J. Austin Moore, Stueve Siegel Hanson LLP Photo

J. Austin Moore

Partner

Overview

Austin Moore litigates high-stakes cases. He practices in state and federal courts across the country and regularly takes on major corporations in nationwide class actions. In 2019, Austin was one of five attorneys named among Law360’s “Rising Stars” in the field of Cybersecurity and Privacy Law, which recognizes attorneys under the age of 40 whose legal accomplishments transcend their age.

Austin focuses his practice on three primary practice areas:

Data Breach and Privacy Litigation. Austin is a national leader in data breach and privacy cases. He has played key roles representing consumers in many of the nation’s largest data breach class actions, including lawsuits against Target, the Home Depot, Anthem Insurance, Equifax, and Marriott. Austin’s recent successes include serving as:

Consumer Class Actions. Austin represents consumers who have been harmed by corporate misconduct, including false advertising, unlawful debt collection, and credit reporting errors. Austin recently obtained one of the largest recoveries in history relating to inaccurate credit reports, securing $29 million in settlements in two pioneering cases against Experian arising out of the agency’s reporting of delinquent loan accounts. In reviewing one of the settlements, the Ninth Circuit noted that “[b]y any measure, class counsel was successful. According to an expert witness, the settlement was the largest Experian has ever agreed to in a case under the Fair Credit Reporting Act.”

Sexual Abuse Liability. Austin advocates for victims of sexual abuse in civil cases against their perpetrators and other negligent parties. He respects the sensitivity of these cases by working with local counseling centers and adopting a trauma-informed approach to his legal representation. Austin’s recent results include:

  • $8.2 million verdict for sexual assault victim who sued assailant for civil assault and battery
  • $1.5 million settlement in nursing home resident sexual assault case
  • Confidential settlement reached against ridesharing giant Uber after female rider was sexually assaulted by driver
  • Confidential settlement for underage female employee who was sexually assaulted by her manager on premises

Austin has been named a Super Lawyers “Rising Star” in class action law each year from 2015-2020. In 2016, Missouri Lawyers Weekly named Austin an “Up and Coming Lawyer.”

Before joining Stueve Siegel Hanson in 2013, Austin was in private practice in St. Louis, where he primarily defended class action cases. He credits this experience with helping him understand how defense lawyers will approach a case – and helping him craft litigation strategies that secure a courtroom advantage.

Experience

Experience

current cases

Kimberly-Clark Flushable Wipes Litigation (Northern District of Texas) – Austin filed the nation's first class action lawsuit against Kimberly-Clark, owner of toilet paper brand Cottonelle, after a harmful bacteria was detected in Cottonelle’s flushable wipes products. Austin is seeking recovery for economic losses and representing more than 1,000 individuals who suffered personal injuries after using the wipes.

Equifax Data Breach Litigation (Northern District of Georgia) – Austin worked alongside co-lead counsel Norman Siegel representing consumers in multi-district litigation against Equifax following its massive data breach impacting 147 million Americans. In December 2019, the Court granted final approval to a historic settlement that includes up to $505.5 million in cash benefits and requires Equifax to spend at least $1 billion upgrading its security over the next five years.

Marriott Data Breach Litigation (District of Maryland) – Austin is working with lead counsel representing consumers multi-district litigation against Marriott and Starwood Hotels following a four-year long data breach compromising 383 million guest records. Austin served as the primary drafter of the consolidated lawsuit and is responsible for handling substantive briefing in the litigation.

Citrix Data Breach Litigation (Southern District of Florida) – Austin was appointed as co-lead counsel in consolidated litigation against technology company Citrix, Inc. after the company suffered a 5-month data breach affecting nearly 24,000 current and former employees. In June 2021, the court approved a $2.3 million settlement that offers an array of benefits to class members.

OPM Data Breach Litigation (District of Columbia) – Austin is representing government employees and contractors against the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) for a data breach affecting 21.5 million individuals. After the trial court dismissed the case on Article III standing grounds, Austin was part of the appellate team that won reversal before the D.C. Circuit in June 2019.

Recent Litigation Highlights (Sexual Abuse Cases)

$8.2 Million Verdict for Sexual Assault Victim – Austin served as trial counsel on behalf of a sexual assault victim who sued her assailant for civil assault and battery. On June 14, 2019, a Jackson County, Missouri judge awarded the victim more than $8.2 million in damages that included $7.2 million in economic and non-economic damages for her “serious and permanent physical, emotional and personal injuries” and an additional $1 million in punitive damages.

$1.5 Million Settlement for Nursing Home Victim - Austin obtained a $1.5 million settlement on behalf of a client who was sexually assaulted at a nursing home by another resident. The confidential settlement was reached on the eve of trial following extensive fact and expert discovery. 

Confidential Sexual Assault Settlement – Austin represented an underage female employee after she was sexually assaulted by her male manager at work and in the course of her employment. After filing a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the parties were able to reach a confidential settlement that received final court approval in May 2019.

Uber Sexual Assault Lawsuit (Jackson County, Missouri) – Austin filed a lawsuit against Uber on behalf of a young woman who was raped by her Uber driver. An investigation revealed that prior to the assault, the driver had been convicted of attempted murder and sentenced to 16 years in prison and other women had complained to Uber about the driver’s assaultive and harassing conduct. After more than 18 months of hard-fought litigation, the case was resolved to the mutual satisfaction of the parties in February 2019.

Recent Litigation Highlights (Consumer Class Actions)

Experian FCRA Litigation (Central District of California) – Austin was appointed as class counsel in two cases that resulted in settlements totaling $29 million against credit reporting agency Experian arising out of the agency’s reporting of delinquent loan accounts. Austin led all aspects of the cases including devising the novel case theory, conducting fact and expert discovery, and briefing and arguing substantive motions, including a successful motion for class certification and three fully-briefed appeals.

NBEO Data Breach Lawsuit (District of Maryland) – Austin was appointed as class counsel on behalf of optometrists who had their personal information compromised by the national optometry board. Following nearly three years of litigation that included a successful appeal, the court approved an “outstanding” $3.25 million settlement.

Anthem Data Breach Litigation (Northern District of California) – In August 2018, a federal district court granted final approval of a $115 million settlement to consumers whose personal information was hacked from Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield insurance companies. Austin was responsible for overseeing the plaintiff vetting and selection process and subsequent plaintiff discovery efforts.

Academy of Art Data Breach Lawsuit (San Francisco Superior Court) – Austin was appointed as class counsel on behalf of current and former employees of Academy of Art University against the school after their W-2 information, including wage data and social security numbers, was compromised in a “phishing” scheme. In July 2018, the court granted final approval to a classwide settlement.

Home Depot Data Breach Litigation (Northern District of Georgia) – Austin was a key member of the leadership group appointed to represent consumers in multi-district litigation against the Home Depot following a massive data breach affecting more than 60 million consumers. In August 2016, the court approved a final settlement valued at over $29 million. Austin chaired the team of attorneys tasked with investigating the case and handling all substantive briefing in the litigation.

Target Data Breach Litigation (District of Minnesota) – Austin was a member of the leadership team appointed to represent a class of consumers in multi-district litigation against Target over its massive 2013 data breach affecting more than 40 million consumers. In June 2018, the Eighth Circuit affirmed approval of a settlement valued at $23 million that provided for $10 million in cash payments to class members. Austin led nationwide plaintiff vetting and discovery efforts in the litigation.

Appellate Litigation

Reyes v. Experian, No. 20-55909 (9th Cir. 2021) – Obtained reversal of trial court’s reduction of attorneys’ fee award where judge who ruled on fees did not preside over litigation and “settlement was the largest Experian has ever agreed to in a case under the Fair Credit Reporting Act.”

Reyes v. Experian,773 F. App'x 882 (9th Cir. 2019) – Obtained reversal of trial court’s decision to grant summary judgment in favor of Experian in a class action under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, finding novel theory of liability should be weighed by jury.

Hutton v. National Board of Examiners in Optometry, 892 F.3d 613 (4th Cir. 2018) – Obtained reversal of trial court’s dismissal of data breach class action for lack of Article IIII standing against national optometry board that denied responsibility for breach.

Moss v. First Premier Bank, 835 F. 3d 260 (2d. Cir. 2016) – Austin briefed and argued an appeal addressing whether Federal Arbitration Act permits appointment of a substitute arbitrator where the contractually-designated arbitrator declines to hear the case. In a published opinion, the Second Circuit affirmed district court’s decision to deny arbitration.

Parm v. National Bank of California, 835 F. 3d 1331 (11th Cir. 2016) – Obtained affirmance of district court's order declining to enforce tribal arbitration agreement because it required arbitration before “an illusory and unavailable arbitral forum.” 

Flagg v. First Premier Bank, No. 15-14052 (11th Cir. 2016) – Obtained affirmance of district court's order denying arbitration where the arbitrator designated in agreement stopped accepting consumer arbitration claims.

Affordable Communities of Missouri v. Fannie Mae, 714 F.3d 1069 (8th Cir. 2013) – Obtained reversal of trial court’s dismissal of breach of contract claim on behalf of a real estate developer alleging that Fannie Mae subjected it to wrongful loan pre-payment penalties.

Publications

The Impact of Scalia’s Death on Forced Arbitration and Consumer Class Actions, Missouri Lawyers Weekly

Securing Data-Breach Claims, Co-Author, Trial Magazine

Are Parens Patriae Suits Subject to Federal Jurisdiction under CAFA? Co-Author, DRI Feature Article

Resale Price Maintenance After Leegin: Why Treating Vertical Price-Fixing as “Inherently Suspect” Is the Only Viable Alternative to the Traditional Rule of Reason, 36 Wash. U. J.L. & Pol’y 289 (2011)

Honors & Awards

Honors & Recognitions

Law360 “Rising Star” in Cybersecurity and Privacy Law (2019)

Super Lawyers Missouri & Kansas “Rising Star” in Class Action Litigation (2015-2020)

Missouri Lawyers Weekly “Top 5 Judgments or Bench Awards” (2019)

Missouri Lawyers Weekly “Up & Coming Lawyer” (2016)

Community

Community & Professional

The Missouri Bar

Illinois State Bar Association

Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association (KCMBA)

KCMBA Federal Courts Advocates Section, CLE Committee Chair and Jr. Member at Large (2016-2021)

Lawyers Encouraging Academic Performance (LEAP) for Operation Breakthrough

KCMBA Military Matters providing pro bono legal services to military veterans

Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys (MATA)

American Association for Justice (AAJ)

Education

Washington University School of Law in St. Louis

J.D., 2011

  • Honors: Dean's List
  • Recipient of Mary Collier Hitchcock Prize, awarded to one student annually for outstanding legal writing
  • CALI Award for Excellence in Legal Practice II: Advocacy
  • Law Review: Washington University Journal of Law & Policy, Associate Editor

University of Mississippi

B.A., Political Science, summa cum laude

  • Honors:  Phi Beta Kappa; Phi Kappa Phi

Admissions

  • Missouri State Bar
  • Illinois State Bar
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit
Jump to Page