Daphne D. Golliher

Ms. Golliher has over 20 years of experience as an attorney in the areas of real estate, construction and business law. Her practice areas include all aspects of civil litigation and dispute resolution in all California State and Federal courts, government hearings, arbitrations and mediations in the areas of business, real estate, and construction law. Ms. Golliher also represents and advises clients in business transactions, construction licensure and compliance, corporate law, real property transactions, and trademark law.

Ms. Golliher has represented clients in a variety of matters, including the following:

Real Estate

  • Successfully prosecuted and defended disputes regarding the title and ownership of real property among joint owners;
  • Negotiated and documented transactions involving real property;
  • Represented owners, lien holders and title companies in title insurance disputes, including: easement and boundary disputes, missed recorded documents, improperly executed or recorded documents, lien priority disputes, fraud and coverage issues;
  • Successfully litigated specific performance of contracts, breach of contract, fraud and rescission cases involving real estate;
  • Successfully represented clients in commercial landlord and tenant disputes;Prepared and completed lot line adjustments for clients, including negotiations with city and county agencies; and
  • Negotiated favorable settlements of retail leases on behalf of the commercial tenants.


  • Advised clients regarding contractors’ licensure issues and regulations of the Contractors State License Board;
  • Prosecuted complaint for $10,000,000 construction claim and mechanic’s lien on behalf of an international construction company seeking payment for work performed in the construction of a major regional hospital and assisted in litigation to a successful out-of court resolution;
  • Defended a major California contractor against multiple lawsuits by businesses near a major public works project, for alleged vibration and earth movement damage to structures and business losses involving aggregate damage claims exceeding $1,000,000, and obtained a successful resolution of each lawsuit;
  • Successfully defended a payment bond claim by a subcontractor against the general contractor and builder of a large multi-unit condominium project through a two and a half week court trial;
  • Represented an international construction company serving as the general contractor in the defense of a multi-party construction defect lawsuit related to an affordable housing development of 36 town homes;
  • Co-prosecuted construction defect suit on behalf of a partnership owning 60 units of rental condominiums resulting in a $1,250,000 day of trial settlement with the builder/general contractor defendant and its insurance companies;
  • Defended numerous contractors and engineering companies against claims of defects in construction, grading and design of residential and commercial structures, earthwork and underground facilities;
  • Achieved a favorable settlement for a heavy engineering contractor from a supplier of specialized fill material that did not satisfy California Department of Transportation specifications in major freeway construction project and had to be removed and replaced by contractor during construction causing delays and expense;
  • Eliminated a fraud cause of action from an amended complaint by a public utility district against an international engineering firm client;
  • Obtained a settlement on behalf of a contractor for the extensive renovation of a commercial historic building;
  • Represented developers, architects, engineers, contractors, sub-contractors, and homeowners in various types of construction defect cases ranging from single family homes to multiple unit subdivisions and from road construction to high rise commercial buildings;
  • Recovered substantial sums of damages on behalf of contractors, subcontractors, architects and engineers in mechanic’s liens, stop notice, payment and performance bond claims;
  • Represented owners, associations, developers, general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, engineers and architects; and
  • Negotiated and prepared construction contracts for all trades for major projects.

Business and Corporate

  • Represented a San Francisco Bay Area university in the negotiation of contracts with the architect and general contractor for the design and construction of a Performing Arts Center on the university campus;
  • Represented a manufacturing supplier in obtaining payment from the bankruptcy estate in a Chapter 11 business bankruptcy for specific unique product manufactured for the debtor;
  • Prepared formations, dissolutions and business revisions for limited liability companies, corporations and partnerships;
  • Represented various types of clients in the purchase and sale of businesses, including, but not limited to, construction, technology, service, retail and real estate businesses;
  • Represented multi-million dollar estate regarding corporate matters;
  • Represented a business in defending against and resolving adversary proceeding in major national bankruptcy action seeking repayment of earnings under completed industrial services contracts;
  • Represented businesses in the formation, financing, acquisition and dissolution of companies;
  • Advised start-up corporations in raising capital through sales of securities within the parameters of registration exemptions, including the reporting of such exempt sales to federal and state agencies;
  • Successfully represented parties in scores of disputes and lawsuits regarding numerous types of business contracts;
  • Advised and assisted corporate clients with corporate compliance and governance; and
  • Represented nonprofit corporations in formations, corporate changes, governmental compliance, transactions and dissolutions.


  • Advised policyholder clients in the assertion and documentation of their first-party claims under various insurance policies; and
  • Represented clients in tendering the defense of various matters to the clients’ insurance companies, addressing numerous insurance coverage and bad faith issues including additional insured endorsements, inception of loss, expected or intended result, cause of damage, duty to defend and duty to indemnify as well as other terms of insurance contracts.

Intellectual Property

  • Represented clients in trademark litigation in Federal and State Courts and in the negotiation and preparation of Trademark Assignments and Domain Name Transfer Agreements.


  • Conducted a winning appeal resulting in the reversal of the trial court’s decision, and remand for new trial on behalf of a client that had been denied leave to amend its complaint to conform to proof at trial; and
  • Prepared writs and appellate briefs on behalf of various parties.


Contact Information:

STE. 325
Walnut Creek, CA 94596
Tel: (925) 933-9800
Fax: (925) 933-9810
email: dgolliher@williams-firm.com

Legal Education:

University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law, Juris Doctorate Degree, May 1985.

Member, 1983-1984 and Research and Books Editor, 1984-1985, Ecology Law Quarterly. Honorable Mention Moot Court Best Brief Competition.

Undergraduate Education:

University of Illinois, Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics, magna cum laude, May 1982; 4.9 out of 5.0 GPA; Dean’s Honor List every semester, 1978-1982; Phi Beta Kappa.

Bar Memberships:

State Bar of California; Bar of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California; Bar of the United States District Court for the Central District of California; Bar of the United States District Court for the Southern District of California; and United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Professional Activities:

Author: Update, Landslide & Subsidence Liability, California Continuing Education of the Bar, 1993, 1994. Director, San Francisco Chapter, 1991-1993 and National Associate Director at Large, 1993-1994, Women Construction Owners & Executives, USA. Member, Legislative Committee, Associated General Contractors, California Chapter, 1996-2000.

Prior Experience:

Prior to joining The Williams Firm in 2000, Ms. Golliher was a partner in the Northern California Office of Dale, Braden and Hinchcliffe; an associate with the Oakland firm of McInerney & Dillon and previously, an attorney in the Law Department of Pacific Gas & Electric Company in San Francisco.