Hon. Jay J. Shin '07

Adjunct Associate Professor of Law / Administrative Law Judge, California Department of Social Services

B.A., Political Science, cum laude, 1997, University of California, Irvine; M.A., International Trade, Yonsei University, Seoul, South Korea; J.D., 2007, Southwestern Law School

Member, California Bar

Joined Southwestern: 2019

For over a decade, Jay Shin worked tirelessly as a debtors’ rights, tenants’ rights and workers’ rights attorney in private practice and for nonprofit organizations. Three months after Mr. Shin became a licensed attorney, he quickly delved into consumer debtor advocacy as defaults and bankruptcy filings skyrocketed in the wake of Lehman Brothers and AIG's collapse during the fall of 2008. 

For seven of those years, Mr. Shin enforced unpaid wage judgments as a staff attorney for the Wage Justice Center, a nonprofit legal services organization that served as outside counsel for the California Labor Commissioner. One of the many hard-fought legal victories to which Mr. Shin contributed involved the misclassification of truck drivers. The drivers were creditors of reorganizing trucking companies in several chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings during an industrywide, litigation-driven restructuring. While the contested matter (bankruptcy litigation) differed for each of these reorganization proceedings – including extensive litigation over the valuation of siphoned-off going concerns or the equitable consolidation of non-debtor assets and liabilities into the estate – each involved individual accountability for the acts of corporate shells. Mr. Shin also recovered unpaid wages through state court corporate shell litigation, liens, levies and expedited day labor litigation using mechanic’s liens. 

Since the summer of 2019, Mr. Shin has been an administrative law judge presiding over California state hearings involving public benefits. Although no longer an advocate, he continues to contribute to an effort that safeguards the due process rights of the working poor and other vulnerable populations accessing the legal system. In July 2020, Mr. Shin is looking forward to teaching his third Intersession course at Southwestern while expecting to hear a large spike in public benefits cases triggered by another abrupt economic downturn.