Michael J. Quirk


Michael Quirk practices in the areas of consumer rights, class action, mass tort, and appellate litigation.

He currently represents people and families in Flint, Mich., who were impacted by toxic lead in the city’s  contaminated water crisis in In re Flint Water Cases: Carthan v. Snyder; women injured by defective transvaginal mesh devices in In re Pelvic Mesh Litigation; payday loan borrowers in Pennsylvania allegedly paying unjustifiably high interest charges to lenders seeking to evade liability through misuse of Indian tribal immunity in Williams et al. v. MacFarlane Grp, Inc. et al.; and student loan borrowers who faced collection actions on a defunct for-profit trade school’s institutional loans alleged to be fraudulent in Gonzalez et al. v. New Century Financial Services, Inc. as assignee of Med-Com Career Training, Inc. d/b/a Drake College of Business; among other cases.

Prior to joining Motley Rice, he was a partner in two Philadelphia law firms, where he was lead appellate counsel for prevailing plaintiffs in cases involving expert admissibility on causation of a rare and fatal lymphoma by prescription drugs, liability and qualified immunity in a police-on-police shooting, retaliatory employment discrimination under Title VII, women’s breast cancer caused by hormone replacement therapy (HRT) drugs, and enforceability of mandatory arbitration clauses barring class actions in payday lending and other consumer contracts. He also was lead or co-lead trial court counsel for plaintiffs in cases against Wells Fargo, Bank of America, and JPMorgan Chase among others allegedly involving predatory Option Adjustable Rate Mortgage (Option ARM) loans that drained the equity from borrowers’ homes, against rent-to-own companies charging allegedly unlawful interest or add-on fees to low-income consumers, and against credit card issuers for allegedly unlawful charges.

Michael also has represented public interest, consumer rights and public health organizations as amici curiae in support of consumers and other plaintiffs.

Previously, he was a staff attorney and Equal Justice Works Fellow with Public Justice, P.C., a national public interest law firm, and was Supreme Court Assistance Project Fellow with the Public Citizen Litigation Group, both in Washington, D.C.

A frequent public speaker, Michael has contributed to discussions of class actions and other legal matters. Michael serves as co-chair of the Board of Directors of the National Association of Consumer Advocates, a nationwide, non-profit association of more than 1,500 private and public sector and legal services lawyers, law professors, and law students whose primary focus is representation and protection of consumers.

Public Justice, a national public interest law firm, awarded Michael its Access to Justice Award in 2003 for his work as co-counsel in helping win unanimous U.S. Supreme Court decision in Sprietsma v. Mercury Marine, defeating federal preemption and preserving access to justice for a wrongful death claimant.

Published Works

  • Consumer Class Actions, Ninth and Tenth Editions (National Consumer Law Center 2016, 2020) (co-author)
  • Consumer Arbitration Agreements: Enforceability and Other Topics, First through Seventh Editions and annual supplements thereto (National Consumer Law Center and Public Justice Foundation 2001-2015) (co-author)
  • New Jersey Mass Torts & Class Action Treatise (New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education 2015) (peer-review editor)
  • National Association of Consumer Advocates, Standards and Guidelines for Litigating and Settling Consumer Class Actions, 299 F.R.D. 160 (3d ed. 2014) (drafting committee member); 255 F.R.D. 215 (2d ed. 2006) (committee member and co-drafter)


J.D. cum laude, University of Michigan Law School, 1999

M.A. Rutgers University, 1996

B.A. The College of New Jersey, 1992

Licensed In

  • New York
  • Pennsylvania

Admitted to Practice Before

U.S. Supreme Court

U.S. Courts of Appeals for the First, Third, Fourth, Ninth, and Eleventh Circuits

U.S. District Courts for the District of Columbia, Eastern District of Pennsylvania, and Northern District of New York


American Association for Justice

National Association of Consumer Advocates, Board of Directors Co-Chair (Board Member since 2015); Issues Committee

Awards and Accolades

2003 Access to Justice Award