Philip Emerson

E-mail MePhilip Emerson

Bend, Oregon

“I am a second generation Oregonian, born in Portland.   I first got to know Bend in the ‘70s.  I loved it then and the best parts of Bend really haven’t changed.   I graduated from the University of Oregon with a double major in Government  (it’s called Political Science now) and Economics and  went to work as a newspaper reporter and magazine writer in Portland.    I moved to Colorado, and continued to write;  I had a weekly newspaper column and produced several bad novels and some very tiresome short fiction as well.   My day job  was as  a ski instructor and racing coach.   In the summers I was  a professional bicycle racer.   I completed law school at Lewis and Clark College, Northwestern School of Law in 1990. 


I had various clerking jobs in and after law school.  One of them  was for a United States District Court judge.   That job helped me to decide to be a trial attorney, a career path I have followed ever since.   My first litigation job was with a union-side labor law firm in Portland,  where my clients were unions and union members.  I represented injured workers in workers compensation cases, workers with civil rights claims, and individuals injured due to the wrongful conduct of others.   I moved to Bend in 1996 to take a job with Brothers and Associates, the predecessor of this law firm.  I left in 2002 to start my own practice,  and have recently returned to the familiar and comfortable surroundings here at 974 NW Riverside.


I love the mountains, the rivers and the desert.   In my spare time over the years I have coached high school skiing (Mt. View;  Oregon State Overall Champions 1998) played trumpet and trombone in a few local bands, and spent many happy hours in the backcountry.  My mobility was compromised by a fairly severe skiing injury in 2009: I broke my femur, pelvis, several ribs, a collarbone and punctured both lungs.   My long and painful recovery has given me insight into my  clients’ problems that I could not have gotten any other way.


I practice in the fields of Workers Compensation, Labor and Employment and Personal Injury.   These separate disciplines naturally complement one another, and certain cases require thorough knowledge of all three areas.   The law is a wonderful profession and offers the opportunity to help people, particularly people who are in a tough spot and really need it.   This job allows me to speak the truth to power,  and to learn new things every day.   Good lawyering requires empathy, curiosity, creativity and diligence.    I feel fortunate to never have trouble getting motivated to come in to work.


Areas of Practice

  • 40% Workers Compensation
  • 30% Employment
  • 30% personal injury

Litigation Percentage

  • 90% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Oregon, 1990
  • U.S. District Court, 1990


  • Lewis and Clark Law School, Portland, Oregon
    • J.D.

Past Employment Positions

  • Philip Emerson, Attorney, PC, Attorney, 2001 - 2009
  • Bryant, Emerson LLP, Attorney, 2009 - 2016