O’Melveny Worldwide

Leah Godesky is a first-chair trial lawyer who leads winning teams, taking on multibillion-dollar cases for clients across an array of industries, including entertainment, insurance, health care, airlines, and banking. The National Law Journal included Leah on its “Winning Litigators” list, which honors trial lawyers for their victories in high-stake cases. She was also recognized as an “agent of change” with her inclusion on The National Law Journal’s list of Sports, Gaming, and Entertainment Trailblazers.

Leah has been honored as one of music’s top litigators (Billboard), and Chambers USA recognizes Leah in Media & Entertainment: Litigation in California. Within O’Melveny, Leah is the recipient of the Warren Christopher Values Award, an honor bestowed on those who exemplify the firm’s legacy of excellence, leadership, and citizenship.

Leah also maintains an active pro bono docket, regularly partnering with lawyers at reproductive-justice organizations to challenge laws that restrict access to women’s health care.

  • Lead counsel in US$20 million jury trial involving coverage and bad-faith dispute; won complete defense verdict.
  • Lead counsel in copyright-infringement jury trial relating to software license; successfully defended US$21 billion disgorgement claim.
  • Successfully defended The Walt Disney Company in copyright infringement lawsuit over blockbuster film Frozen II; obtained pleading-stage dismissal of sound-recording infringement claims.
  • Successfully resolved for NBCUniversal trademark-infringement claims arising out of a blockbuster film franchise.
  • Co-led jury trial team representing leading insurer in property-damage coverage dispute; won complete defense verdict.
  • Defending Planned Parenthood Federation of America in US$1.8 billion False Claims Act litigation pending in Texas.
  • Represented pop music star Kesha in defamation litigation and obtained landmark victories at New York Court of Appeals on public-figure and litigation-privilege issues.
  • Represented Universal City Studios LLC in retrial of a profit participation dispute arising out of the television show Columbo.
  • Represented leading insurer in builders-risk coverage disputes arising out of California rainstorms.
  • Representing leading insurer in coverage litigation arising from COVID-19 pandemic business-interruption claims.
  • Defended The Walt Disney Company in actress Scarlett Johansson’s lawsuit over distribution of the film Black Widow.
  • Represented Warner Bros. in litigation with co-financer over distribution of The Matrix Resurrections and other films.
  • Represented Klarna Inc. in consumer fraud litigation over Klarna's point-of-sale financing service.
  • Obtained summary-judgment-stage injunction for Twentieth Century Fox in employee-poaching dispute with Netflix over the enforceability of California fixed-term employment contracts.
  • Representing insurance company in litigation over environmental-pollution investigation and remediation costs.


Bar Admissions

  • California
  • Connecticut
  • New York

Court Admissions

  • US Court of Appeals, First, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Eighth Circuits
  • US District Court, Central District of California, Southern District of California, Northern District of California, Connecticut, New Jersey, Southern District of New York, and Western District of Wisconsin


  • Columbia University, J.D.: James Kent Scholar; Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar
  • Colgate University, B.A., Political Science, Religion: magna cum laude

Honors & Awards

  • Ranked by Chambers USA for Media & Entertainment: Litigation (2023-2024)
  • Named to Top Music Lawyers List by Billboard (2019-2024)
  • Recommended by The Legal 500 US for Media and Entertainment: Litigation (2022, 2024)
  • Recommended by The Legal 500 US for Insurance: Advice to Insurers (2024)
  • Honored as ACLU Pro Bono Attorney of the Year (2022)
  • Named to Variety’s Legal Impact Report (2020-2022, 2024)
  • Named a Sports/Gaming/Entertainment Trailblazer by The National Law Journal (2021)
  • Recognized by The American Lawyer as "Young Lawyer of the Year" (2021)
  • Recognized by New York Law Journal as a “Rising Star” and “New York Trailblazer” (2020)
  • Received the American Bar Association’s Pro Bono Publico Award (2020)
  • Named to Crain’s New York Business “Notable Women in Law” (2019)
  • Selected as a “Winning Litigator” by The National Law Journal (2019)
  • Named to the 40 & Under Hot List in General Commercial & Securities by Benchmark Litigation (2018-2022, 2024)
  • Shortlisted by Chambers Women in Law Awards: Future Leader –– Gender Diversity (2018)


Professional Activities


  • “State Attorneys General and Contingency Fee Arrangements: An Affront to the Neutrality Doctrine? The Underlying Legal Theories and a Novel Proposal for Reform,” Columbia Journal of Law and Social Problems (May 2009)


  • Leadership Council on Legal Diversity