Mary McPherson Tressler LLP

McPherson, Mary E. Partner

McPherson, Mary E. Partner

Practice Focus

Mary McPherson handles complex coverage matters exclusively on behalf of the insurance industry.  She is highly experienced in counseling and representing insurers in complex bad faith, asbestos, construction defect, additional insured, personal injury, environmental and primary/excess coverage issues on a nationwide basis.  Mary is often brought in by insurers to assess and troubleshoot complex coverage issues in high exposure tort cases and assist them in reaching global settlements.
Mary has successfully defended insurers in trials involving advertising injury coverage for trade dress infringement and lost policy issues, as well as prosecuting contribution claims.  She has established California law favorable to the insurance industry in Peerless Lighting Corp. v. American Motorists Ins. Co., 82 Cal. App. 4th 995 (2000) and Century Surety Co. v. United Pacific Ins. Co. 109 Cal. App. 4th 1246 (2003).

Professional Background

A California native, Mary joined Tressler’s Chicago office in 1989 after practicing in Colorado for three years. She opened the firm’s Los Angeles office in 1995, serving as that office’s Managing Partner for 10 years. Mary currently resides in the firm’s Orange County office. Mary was recently selected by her peers in 2021, 2023 and 2024 for The Best Lawyers in America© for Insurance Law.

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Defense Research Institute, Member, Insurance Committee
  • California State Bar Association, Member 
  • Illinois State Bar Association, Member
  • Colorado State Bar Association, Member 

Recent Articles and Blogs


Representative Experience

  • Successful 9th Circuit appeal affirming that insurer is not obligated to indemnify insured for $1 million in “rip-out and replace” costs when insured’s defective product had to be replaced.
  • Negotiated a settlement of a $30 million claim in a complex asbestos coverage matter saving millions on the policy limits.
  • Successfully defended an insurer against an independent counsel/bad faith suit prevailing on an early summary judgment.
  • Counseled insurer and assisted in negotiating settlement in a multi-insurer case
  • Successfully prosecuted a “Buss” reimbursement action arising out of an intellectual property claim resulting in an early settlement with the insurer receiving reimbursement of a portion of its defense fees and costs.

Personal Life

Mary loves to garden (flowers, not veggies!), watch Notre Dame football and Dodgers games, read mystery novels and travel. She delights in spending time with her large extended family and hopes someday to learn how to cook.