Taki V.
Flevaris

PARTNER

Taki Flevaris is an experienced litigator and advocate for public and private clients and provides public clients with advice on constitutional and municipal law matters.

Taki Flevaris is a litigator and advisor to public and private clients in the Pacific Northwest. He has litigated numerous cases involving federal, state, and local governments across a wide variety of subject areas—including housing, campaign finance, elections, education, free speech, defamation, public records, eminent domain, class actions, contracts, insurance coverage, antitrust, environmental law, real estate, and taxation—often with a constitutional or political dimension.

Taki also regularly advises clients on constitutional, statutory, and regulatory compliance issues, the scope of governmental authority, and internal policy formulation and implementation. Taki provides responsive, efficient, and effective service with an eye toward the client’s particular needs and circumstances. He has extensive experience with various complex legal frameworks and can serve as an invaluable resource to clients aiming to resolve ongoing disputes or to prevent them from arising in the first place.

Taki has developed a breadth of experience and depth of understanding in a variety of subject areas to assist public and private clients with their most pressing and difficult problems. Much of his work focuses on the following five core areas:

  • Housing. Taki represents a wide variety of clients on emerging housing issues, including state housing finance agencies, local housing authorities, cities, and other public bodies. He has litigated successfully against the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development, private mortgage companies, and other participants in governmental housing programs. He advises public clients on navigating federal housing programs and regulations, disability accommodation requirements, and state housing laws. In the midst of a growing housing crisis, Taki has also helped cities across Washington develop, and resolve disputes over, policies and practices for addressing unauthorized encampments on public property.
  • Campaigns, Elections, and Ethics. Taki represents candidates, elected officials, caucus committees, county committees, ballot initiative campaigns, and politically active nonprofit organizations across the state with campaign requirements, electoral rules, and ethics standards. He assists political campaigns with finance activities and reporting, in administrative proceedings, and in litigation. He also advises governmental officials, agencies, and private clients facing complex ethics, reporting, or compliance issues. Taki has successfully defended numerous candidates and political committees in response to citizen complaints, before the Public Disclosure Commission, and in investigations by the Attorney General’s Office. Taki also works with state and local initiatives, including drafting, constitutional analysis, and legal challenges.
  • Education. Taki regularly assists school districts with regulatory compliance, policy development and implementation, and dispute resolution, especially regarding constitutional issues such as freedom of speech or religion. He keeps districts informed of pertinent legal developments and helps update their regulations and procedures over time on varied subjects such as graduation standards, alternative learning experiences, and student journalism. He also advises districts on discrete and complex legal problems as they arise, including compliance with constitutional, statutory, or regulatory requirements and resolving concerns raised by parents, community members, employees, or special interest groups. Taki also helps districts resolve discrete disputes as they arise, early and efficiently when possible, or through litigation if necessary.
  • Speech, Religion, Race, and Gender. Taki has extensive experience litigating and advising on issues related to freedom of speech and association, religious rights, and race and gender in government. He regularly advises clients on a wide variety of complex disputes implicating these issues, ranging from public employee use of social media, to the treatment of religion in governmental aid programs, to policies on preferred names and pronouns. He has successfully defended public agencies against challenges to reasonable regulations of constituent communications, protest activities, and professional licensing. Taki has also litigated extensively on issues of racial bias, discrimination, and equity, and has advised many public clients on compliance with Washington’s statutory requirements for public employment, education, and contracting known as I-200.
  • Public Records. Taki regularly counsels public agencies on managing and responding to requests for public records under Washington’s Public Records Act. He has assisted various agencies develop and implement effective policies for addressing the most complex and burdensome requests. He has also successfully defended agencies against legal challenges arising from such requests. Taki also regularly assists clients to obtain public records.

Prior to joining Pacifica, Taki worked as an Advocacy Fellow at the Korematsu Center for Law and Equality at Seattle University School of Law, as a litigation associate at K&L Gates, and as a law clerk to the Honorable Steven C. González of the Washington State Supreme Court.

Taki is actively involved in pro bono work and civic engagement. He has written and presented regarding equal access and equal treatment in our justice system and in the legal profession, advocated on behalf of various civic organizations acting as amicus curiae in state and federal courts, and litigated on behalf of immigrants seeking asylum from persecution before federal immigration courts, the Board of Immigration Appeals, and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Taki also is active in various professional and community organizations.

Prior to his career in the law, Taki spent time coaching the Reed College speech and debate team and studying flamenco guitar. He now spends much of his time outside the law exploring the wonders of life with his spouse and two young children. He also plays basketball, is an avid fan of his hometown team the Portland Trailblazers, and continues to hold out hope for the return of the SuperSonics to Seattle.

Bar Admissions:
  • Washington
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
Education:
  • Northwestern University, B.A., Philosophy (with honors, Dean’s List, Demoz Prize for Undergraduate Excellence in Linguistics)
  • Harvard Law School, J.D. (Journal of Law and Technology, Submissions Committee, Research Assistant to Professor Martha Minow)
Honors:
  • Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America in the fields of Appellate Practice and Municipal Law, 2022
  • Outstanding Young Lawyer Award, King County Bar Association, 2016
  • Selected for Washington Rising Stars, 2014-2021
Speaking:
  • Can They Say That?: Managing Controversial Employee Speech in a Time of Polarization, Association of Washington Cities Labor Relations Institute Conference, May 6, 2021
  • Civil Unrest Inside and Out: Managing Controversial Employee Speech and Volatile Protesting, Washington State Association of Municipal Attorneys Annual Fall Conference, October 21, 2020, Online Event
  • We the People Panel Discussion—How the Constitution has served marginalized communities, King County Library System, September 22, 2020, Online Event
  • Religion: Toeing the Line, Washington Schools Risk Management Pool, February 6, 2020, Tukwila, WA
  • Refusing the Right of First Refusal, Association of Washington Housing Authorities, November 7, 2019, Vancouver, WA
  • Religion: Toeing the Line, University of Washington, November 4, 2019, Seattle, WA
  • School Districts and Religion: Toeing the Line, Pacifica Law Group Breakfast Briefing, October 24, 2019, Seattle, WA
  • Refusing the Right of First Refusal, Affordable Housing Conference, October 1, 2019, Spokane, WA
  • PDC Pitfalls for the Unprepared: Ballot Measures, Washington State Association of Municipal Attorneys Annual Fall Conference, October 13, 2017, Cle Elum, WA
  • Working With HUD, Association of Washington Housing Authorities Meeting, September 15, 2016, Walla Walla, WA
  • Lessons from Sarbanes-Oxley for Washington’s Cities and Counties, Washington State Association of Municipal Attorneys Annual Spring Conference, April 29, 2016, Stevenson, WA
  • Lessons from Sarbanes-Oxley for the UW, Attorney General’s Office, UW Division, July 15, 2015, Seattle, WA
  • Racial Bias in the Justice System, Washington State Association for Justice Annual Meeting and Convention, July 28, 2013, Coeur D’Alene, ID
  • Biases Matter:  How Does Bias Affect You and the Participants in the Legal System?, Oregon State Bar Association Convocation on Equality, November 4, 2011, Portland, OR
  • Retaining Diversity in the Justice System: Problems and Solutions, Access to Justice and Bar Leaders’ Conference, June 4, 2011, Kennewick, WA
  • Implicit (and Explicit) Bias and the Legal Profession: A Closer Look at Turner v. Stime, Plenary Session, Fifth Annual Statewide Diversity Conference, June 25, 2010, Seattle, WA
  • Turner v. Stime—Recognizing and Attacking Juror Bias, Washington State Bar Association Committee for Diversity and Washington State Attorney General’s Office, May 21, 2010, Tacoma, WA
  • Turner v. Stime—Recognizing and Attacking Juror Bias, Washington State Bar Association Committee for Diversity, March 31, 2010, Seattle, WA
Publications:
  • Public Records Act Deskbook: Washington’s Public Disclosure and Open Public Meetings Laws (2d ed., 2020 supplement), contributing author
  • Understanding Washington’s New General Rule on Racial Bias in Jury Selection, King County Bar Association Bar Bulletin (2018), Thomas M. O’Toole and Taki V. Flevaris
  • Cross-Racial Misidentification: A Call to Action in Washington State and Beyond, 38 Seattle U.L. Rev. 861 (2015), Taki V. Flevaris and Ellie F. Chapman
  • Research Working Group, Task Force on Race and the Criminal Justice System, Preliminary Report on Race and Washington’s Criminal Justice System, 47 Gonz. L. Rev. 251 (2011-12), 87 Wash. L. Rev. 1 (2012), 35 Seattle U. L. Rev. 623 (2012), contributing author and editor
  • Bias in the Courtroom, One Degree Removed, 17 Asian Pac. Am. L.J. 100 (Fall 2011-Spring 2012), Robert S. Chang and Taki V. Flevaris
  • Encyclopedia of the Supreme Court of the United States (David S. Tanenhaus, ed., 2008), contributing author
  • Newberg on Class Actions (William Rubenstein, ed., under contract), contributing author
Community Involvement:
  • Washington Supreme Court GR 37 Jury Selection Workgroup, Member, 2017-2018
  • Your House Boxing & Community Club, Board Member, Vice President, and Administrator, 2011-2016
  • Future of the Law Institute, Mentor, 2010
Professional Organizations:
  • King County Bar Association Appellate Section, Executive Committee, 2011-2018, Chair, 2016-2017
  • Access to Justice Board Technology Committee, Member, 2012
  • Fred T. Korematsu Center for Law and Equality, Advocacy Fellow and Faculty Affiliate, 2009-2011 and 2013-present
  • Task Force on Race and the Criminal Justice System, Member, 2010-2011
Representative Matters:
  • Litigation involving the City of Seattle, the State of Washington, and various political committees, regarding the scope of Seattle’s local power of referendum
  • Litigation between a local public housing authority and the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development regarding the classification and administration of certain housing stock
  • A lawsuit between a municipality and unhoused persons raising federal and state constitutional claims over the treatment of unauthorized encampments on public property
  • A lawsuit between a school district and a parent subjected to special rules for communicating with staff, arising under the First Amendment to the United States Constitution
  • Litigation between a bar association and a licensed attorney over the legality of mandatory bar membership, license fees, and lawyer discipline procedures
  • A lawsuit between a federally approved natural gas pipeline project and certain state officials, arising under both the Supremacy Clause and Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution
  • Assisting electoral candidates respond to a pattern of citizen action complaints before Washington’s Public Disclosure Commission
  • Mediation between a housing authority and landlord over the valuation of certain rental properties within the Section 8 voucher program
  • Constitutional, regulatory, and strategic analysis for a quasi-public organization regarding its legal status, organizational structure, and ongoing programming and planning
  • Assisting a school district to resolve complaints from community members raising concerns over the treatment of free speech and religion on campus
  • Analysis of constitutional and related legal issues for a municipal campaign supporting campaign finance reform
  • Advising a municipality on effective strategies and policies for responding to a wide variety of potential requests under Washington’s Public Records Act