Ernest “Will” Klatte, III — Managing Partner

Ernest “Will” Klatte, III is Managing Partner of Klatte Budensiek & Young-Agriesti, LLP, a specialized labor and employment law firm that places a premium on client care and relationships. As Managing Partner, Mr. Klatte heads up the firm’s litigation practice, which is devoted exclusively to the representation of business and management. For almost 30 years, Mr. Klatte has represented some of the nation’s largest Fortune 500 companies in state and federal court proceedings throughout the state of California.

Prior to starting his own firm in 2012, Mr. Klatte spent almost 26 years at Rutan & Tucker, LLP, the largest full-service law firm in Orange County, most recently as a Senior Partner. He served at various times as a member of the firm’s Executive Committee and the Chair of its Labor and Employment Section.

Over the course of his career, Mr. Klatte has defended his clients against a wide variety of California state and federal claims. His employment litigation experience includes the defense of hundreds of individual employment claims, including actions for wrongful termination, discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. He also has significant experience representing employers in complex wage and hour class actions.

Mr. Klatte’s commercial litigation experience includes the defense and prosecution of claims for misappropriation of trade secrets, unfair competition, interference with contractual relations and prospective economic advantage, and breach of contract. Mr. Klatte also has significant experience representing businesses in the defense of consumer claims under the California Unruh Civil Rights Act.

A native Californian, Mr. Klatte is married to his wife of 36 years. They have three adult children. He speaks French fluently and Spanish conversationally. In his limited free time he enjoys tending his vegetable garden, exercising, and travel.