Michelle Peterson

Shareholder | Seattle | 206.223.3987 |

Areas of Practice

Michelle Peterson focuses her practice in commercial litigation, white collar criminal defense and government investigations. Michelle’s experience includes representing businesses and individuals in all aspects of litigation, including white collar criminal prosecutions, qui tam matters, government investigations and commercial disputes. She also focuses her practice on compliance issues and governmental investigations relating to long-term care and senior housing, including false claims, anti-kickbacks, and Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements.

Michelle serves as the co-chair to the Local Rules Committee for the Western District of Washington Federal Bar Association, where she represents the bar in providing recommendations to the court on proposed amendments to both the criminal and civil local rules. In this capacity, she also co-chaired an electronically stored information subcommittee that was responsible for creating the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington’s Model Agreement Regarding Discovery of Electronically Stored Information, which can be found on the court’s website. Michelle has extensive experience and knowledge of the federal courts having spent over four years as a judicial law clerk in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington and District of Minnesota.

Professional Experience

  • Yarmuth Wilsdon Calfo PLLC, Partner
  • Lane Powell PC, Associate
  • Briggs & Morgan, Associate
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington, Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable James L. Robart
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Richard H. Kyle

Admitted to Practice

  • Washington
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals


  • University of Minnesota Law School (J.D., magna cum laude, 2000)
    • Order of the Coif
    • Dean’s List
    • Minnesota Journal of Global Trade, Managing Editor
  • Seattle Pacific University (B.A., 1997)

Practice Group and Specialty Team Memberships

  • Litigation
  • Long Term Care and Seniors Housing Client Service Team
  • Securities Litigation
  • White Collar Criminal Defense, Regulatory Compliance and Special Investigations
  • Electronic Discovery Committee


  • American Health Lawyers Association Long Term Care Handbook, Editor (February 2014)
  • “Revised Local Civil Rules for the Western District of Washington — Ignore at Your Peril,” Federal Bar Association Western District of Washington Newsletter, Volume 34, Issue 2, Co-author (Winter 2012)
  • “OIG Report Claims Inappropriate Payments to SNFs Cost Medicare More Than $1 Billion a Year,” American Health Lawyers Association Long Term Care, Senior Housing, In-Home Care and Rehabilitation Practice Group newsletter (November 20, 2012)
  • “The Bank is Open: SEC Investor Protection Fund Poised to Pay Whistleblower Bounties,” Seattle Business magazine, Co-author (September 2012)
  • “Lessons From the Failed Prosecution of In-House Pharmaceutical Counsel,” American Bar Association Criminal Litigation Section Newsletter, Co-author (Fall 2011)
  • “What is a Civil Investigative Demand and Why is the Government’s Use of Them Increasing?” Puget Sound Business Journal ADR and Litigation Q&A Column Titled “Ask the Legal Professionals” (August 26, 2011)

Speaking Engagements

  • “Use of Aid and Attendance Benefits for Long Term Care,” Washington Healthcare Association (June 25, 2013)
  • “Controlling Costs of Litigation and the New Local Rules,” 29th Annual Federal Bar Association Dinner and CLE, Panelist (December 5, 2012)
  • “Trial by Agreement and the Local Rules,” Federal Bar Association of the Western District of Washington Continuing Legal Education Luncheon (September 20, 2012)
  • “Understanding Healthcare Information Releases,” Association of Senior Referral Professionals Member Meeting (September 11, 2012)

Representative Matters and Clients

  • Defended W.R. Grace executive in environmental criminal prosecution alleging obstruction of justice and knowing endangerment under the Clean Air Act, arising out of company’s operation of a vermiculite mine in Libby, Mo.; company and individuals acquitted after trial
  • Defended a natural gas pipeline company in Department of the Interior investigation into an alleged violation of the National Historic Preservation Act for failing to disclose an historic shipwreck during surveying of a potential pipeline; matter settled prior to formal proceedings
  • Represented owner of brokerage firm in commercial dispute over sale of business; successfully tried to verdict
  • Defended medical software company in qui tam proceedings arising out of U.S. Commerce Department grant, as well as Department of Labor and federal court proceedings arising out of whistleblower’s retaliation claims; government declined prosecution and company prevailed on summary judgment in federal court

Professional and Community Activities

  • Member, Federal Bar Association
  • Co-chair, Local Rules Committee for the U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington
  • Member, The William L. Dwyer American Inn of Court
  • Member, Federal Pro-Bono Panel, Western District of Washington
  • Pro-Bono Attorney for Veterans Appealing to the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veteran Claims
  • Washington Women Lawyers, King County Chapter, Judicial Evaluations Committee

Michelle Peterson

Shareholder | Seattle | 206.223.3987 |