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If international arbitration is ‘the dispute resolution method of choice in a globalising world’, then the burgeoning workload is the subject of ever increasing competition. More and more firms are focusing on the sector, increasing the competition for talented and experienced practitioners, even as novel funding models, such as third party financing, continue to drive overall volume. In the US, the imminent retirement of many key players of the generation that saw the practice comes to prominence is likely to cause shifts in the market.

The majority of firms active in the area of international trade have Washington DC-based teams located in the District and centered around the US branches of federal government. Indeed several practitioners at the leading firms have experience of working for government agencies and trade institutions and are particularly esteemed for their contacts and insider knowledge. Additionally, a number of the firms have established trade centers operating outside of the US, focusing on EU competition issues and WTO matters in Geneva and trade remedies in China. International trade is a broad practice area and encompasses trade litigation and export controls, CFIUS expertise, the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and OFAC sanctions.

With regard to WTO matters, firms have highlighted a tendency to move away from public arbitration to private proceedings and have noticed an increase of activity in this area following Russia’s accession to the WTO in August 2012. Elsewhere, firms have reported an increase in activity in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Work in the area of export controls remains buoyant due to the escalation of sanctions placed on Syria and Iran by both the US and the UN. The US government has actively enforced sanctions through criminal and civil penalties and firms have noted an increase in instructions received from corporate clients in relation to compliance advice. On the anti-dumping side firms remain heavily involved in the solar panel litigation between the US and China.

Firms active in mass tort are situated across the US enjoy a national reputation and have experience co-ordinating parallel state and federal cases for individuals, class actions and multidistrict litigation (MDL). Within the team, the firm will usually have a designated trial lawyer to lead on cases that proceed to trial. Of concern in the area of labor and employment is the extent to which employers are able to immunise themselves against class actions and this remains an important issue to be tested. A further issue which has come to the fore in labor and employment are qui tam or whistleblower cases and firms are increasingly active representing whistleblowers. Firms specialising in toxic tort remain involved in asbestos litigation and have continued to diversify their practices to include cases relating to environmental pollution and, in particular, fracking. Additionally, a number of firms are involved in the National Football League (NFL) concussion litigation, a controversial case and one that remains at the initial stages. Within the antitrust arena, firms concentrate on price-fixing, monoploization and market allocation. Prominence in the table has been given to firms that are repeatedly appointed to act as lead counsel, co-lead counsel or to serve on plaintiffs’ steering committees.

The rankings for product liability and mass tort defense are sub-divided into industry sectors, in an attempt to reflect the structure of leading product liability practice groups. An uptick in consolidated litigation meant that many of the country’s most prominent teams took lead roles in large multi-district litigation, which played to the strengths of those practices with national coverage. There was also a marked increase in investigations by government agencies into consumer products sector, particularly in relation to false advertising and labelling claims, but disputes concerning Master Settlement Agreements kept traditional tobacco-focused practice busy. In the pharmaceutical and medical devices sector, mass tort claims connected with Merck & Co’s Vioxx product continued to provide instructions for product defense groups, as did the new wave of personal injury lawsuits linked to its Fosamax product. The strongest practices continued to win roles as lead national counsel for clients including GlaxoSmithKline, Bayer and Pfizer. Asbestos-driven litigation appeared to be tailing off, as a significant number portion of toxic tort lawyers focused on environmental issues ranging from climate change to oil spills and exposure to benzene. Another notable trend during 2012 was the rise to prominence of the ‘virtual law firm’, where clients handpick numerous local counsel to work together in nationwide mass tort and product liability defense.

The leading trial lawyers section is an elite list made up of lawyers who have tried many cases over a long period of time. Many of these lawyers are also name partners in major firms, and all have built superb reputations by successfully conducting high-profile trials. Some lawyers specialise in a particular area - there are recent trends towards West Coast IP trial specialists or lawyers with securities-oriented dockets, particularly in New York - but many can pick up a matter on short notice and use honed skills to try a case. As a result, most of these lawyers enjoy eclectic and interesting careers, spanning both white-collar and civil work. Some are also retained for high-level appeals work after the original trial; the chapter encompasses this work as well.

Undoubtedly, financial services litigation post-2008 (including subprime and Madoff-related cases) continues to be the most active area for firms handling securities: shareholder litigation, although merger clearance litigation generally is also on the rise as shareholders look to put additional pressure on transactions to try to take financial advantage of regulatory reforms. Among the new developments that firms are gearing up for is the expected onslaught of litigation involving US-listed Chinese entities; firms are already recording an uptick in instructions and this type of work is expected to dominate caseload in 2012. In an ongoing trend, firms continue to ramp up their enforcement capability to keep on top of the new regulatory scrutiny aimed towards their clients. Weighting in this table is given to firms with the capacity to handle the full array of instructions, whether it is from issuers, underwriters, directors, accountants or officers. Many of these practices ranked in this table have significant white-collar and SEC capabilities due to the close ties between private litigation and SEC investigations, however, we do have different rankings to address competence in the area of white-collar criminal defense (as well as other related disciplines).

The Supreme Court section is concerned with the small number of elite firms that regularly conduct arguments before the highest court in the US. The Court now hears on average about 70 cases on the merits each year, and with 30 or so of these being criminal, the competition for big civil representations is fierce. One trend in recent years has been the Court’s willingness to give time to certain extraordinary instances such as campaign finance reform, immigration and, famously in 2012, the constitutionality of President Obama’s healthcare reforms. Meanwhile the appellate table - although it consists of many of the same firms - covers a far larger amount of work across the country; the firms in this table can point to truly national dockets. Lawyers in this specialised area of practice report that they are beginning to be consulted more frequently at the trial stage of a matter, in case the matter should end up on appeal. There have also been increases over the last years in IP and environmental litigation.

Employee mobility is a key vector in the transfer of trade secrets from one company to another. As the US economy is starting to show signs of recovery, so too is the country seeing increased activity in certain of its labor markets. This has resulted in an increase in trade secret cases being tried and settled. Businesses are becoming increasingly sensitized to trade secret issues and are, as a result, developing safeguarding mechanisms while actively enforcing non-compete clauses and restrictive covenants further increasing the potential for trade secret litigation. Moreover, the US federal authorities are increasingly active in enforcing the Economic Espionage Act and this has resulted in more overlap between civil and criminal cases. The government’s actions are linked to the increasing internationalization of cases, with a wide number of alleged offences originating from East Asia. On top of these issues, law firms are having to contend with the impact recent technological changes have had on the means of protecting confidential information, transferring this information and uncovering any misappropriations. Lawyers are becoming increasingly dependent on the work of computer forensic experts and some practices have sought to increase their technical capabilities in this domain.

The government’s crusade against white-collar criminals continues apace, particularly since the Obama administration entered its second term. Subsequently, law firms with solid defense practices are experiencing an extremely buoyant market, with those at the top-end handling the full range of criminal matters within the corporate world; namely fraud, bribery and embezzlement. The ability to compete on an international scale is increasingly important, given the continuing prominence of FCPA, the UK Bribery Act, and cartel cases. Insider trading, particularly within hedge funds, remains rife, and the LIBOR scandal spawned an abundance of high-stakes cases. Large corporate ‘powerhouses’ are often best placed to handle big-ticket securities litigation as these are able to draw upon the resources needed to handle multi-jurisdictional matters that often require input from other departments. This holistic approach is also beneficial where a case proceeds on numerous fronts; for example an investigation that involves parallel civil class actions. Meanwhile, there are a number of excellent litigation boutiques that tend to focus on representing high-level individuals. These practices are likely to have a deep bench of trial lawyers (when representing a corporation the stakes are often too high to risk trial). New York is the main hub of activity for the financial-related matters, while many West Coast practices are heavily involved in healthcare fraud. Washington DC is also a prime location for white-collar work, given its closeness to the regulatory agencies.

International arbitration

Index of tables

  1. International arbitration
  2. Leading lawyers

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP’s 68-strong international dispute resolution group is ‘definitely one of the best’ and ‘covers the waterfront’, undertaking both arbitration and all associated litigation and public international law matters. ‘Well organised, with high service levels, and demonstrating professionalism, experience and deep industry knowledge’, the practice acts for clients such as Exxon Mobil, General Electric and GlaxoSmithKline. Results speak for themselves: last year saw the team win a $1.8bn ICSID settlement on behalf of Occidental. Other investor-state work has seen the team acting on behalf of: Perenco against Ecuador; Exxon Mobil against Canada (in a case under NAFTA regulations); and Tethyan Copper against the Republic of Pakistan in a case with both ICSID and ICC aspects. On the commercial side, the current caseload includes representing a major retail business, Grupo Diniz, and investment group GLG Partners, in separate ICC cases seated in Sao Paolo. Group co-chairs Donald Francis Donovan and David Rivkin have reputations that precede them: ‘they are both such extraordinary lawyers, they really are people to be reckoned with: pound-for-pound - superb’. Mark Friedman is ‘very good, deeply experienced and attentive to every detail’. He splits his time between London and New York. ‘One of the brightest lights’ of the younger generation Catherine Amirfaris an extraordinarily good technical lawyer and advocate’, who ‘quietly decimates witnesses without their ever knowing it’. Primarily Asia-focused Christopher Tahbaz splits his time between New York and Hong Kong, and Dietmar Prager, who was recently promoted to the partnership, has a strong Latin American - and more specifically Brazilian - aspect to his practice.

Clearly an industry leader in the field of international arbitration’, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLPprovides excellent service in this area’. The firm handles a significant number of sizeable commercial cases but is best known for its capabilities on either side of investor-state cases, frequently in the energy and infrastructure sector and particularly in relation to Latin America. On the investor side, it is currently undertaking the damages phase of proceedings on behalf of Total; and representing BG Group in the US Supreme Court following a decision by the Washington DC Appeals court to vacate an award - both cases are against Argentina. Elsewhere it is representing: Bureau Veritas against Paraguay ($70m), Rurelec against Bolivia ($140m), Burlington Resources against Ecuador ($500m), GDF Suez in a pair of cases against Argentina ($1.3bn); and Crystallex International against Venezuela ($2.3bn). On the state side, it recently successfully defended Guatemala against a $185m BIT claim brought by Iberdrola Energía, and is representing the same defendant in a $285m DR-CAFTA case brought by TECO. It is also representing the governments of St Lucia and Granada in (separate) cases involving RSM Corporation. Elsewhere, the team is handling cases in Brazil, Europe and Africa. Head of both the US and Latin American international arbitration practice groups, the ‘excellent’ Nigel Blackaby displays ‘very fine judgement’ and has ‘truly excellent advocacy skills’. With the relocation of Lucy Reed, co-head of the firm’s global arbitration group, to the Hong Kong office, he leads a team that is over 40-strong. Clients report ‘a strong bench’ and ‘a very good bedside manner’ which makes it ‘easy to work with the firm’. Beyond Blackaby, key figures include the ‘supremely prepared and hard-working’ Brian King, who is ‘clearly comfortable in the arbitral forum’; and Alex Yanos who has ‘a deep knowledge of international arbitration and US appellate strategy, and is able to convey that knowledge in a clear and concise manner’. Recently appointed counsel, both Noiana Marigo and Alex Wilbraham are emergent figures of note in a team that has ‘enormous experience, is technically and practically first rate, and impresses with its pro-activity, attention to detail, commitment and availability’.

With ‘excellent service levels and fast response-times’, and ‘the ability to work well’ with co-counsel and local firms, King & Spalding LLP is an impressive proposition: ‘it is excellent on hearings, emergency issues, whatever it may be - it always gets really positive results’. Moreover, despite generally beings associated with the oil and gas sector, the team has ‘the broad range of knowledge and experience across different industries and fields that is crucial to winning cases’ and is ‘always looking ahead and planning its next moves’. With a caseload of some 60 pending arbitrations (valued at over $60bn), the last 12 months has seen the team secure a $440m settlement in favour of client Exterran against Venezuela; obtain a favourable jurisdictional decision for Teinver in its ICSID case against Argentina; and, on the commercial side, defend the Republic of Turkey in a $70m ICC case brought by Temzet Elektrik Ürestim Iletim Anonim S¸irketi. Moreover, clients report the firm as ‘more cost effective than most of its peers’. The ‘experienced and charming’, R Doak Bishop is ‘an outstanding attorney and an amazing arbitration lawyer’ according to clients, one of whom suggests ‘no attorney has more experience or better command of investor-state arbitration than Doak’. Credited with having done ‘a phenomenal job in building this practice’, he is supported by a phalanx of other capable partners in the Houston office including John Bowman, Craig Miles, Roberto Aguirre Luzi, Reginald Smith and Jennifer Price. While ICCA vice-president Guillermo Aguilar Alvarez is today primarily dedicated to sitting as an arbitrator, his colleague in the New York office, ‘the very capableEdward Kehoe, remains focused on acting as counsel and has ‘an admirably broad practice’. He is noted for his ‘grasp of the potential implications of an issue or of a parallel litigation’. The firm has also strengthened its bench. The New York office incorporated Henry Burnett, ‘an amazing lawyer: intelligent and hard-working, he delivers results’, and James Berger, a commercial disputes specialist, and saw Caline Mouawad promoted to partner. In Houston, litigator Kevin Mohr and ‘great up-and-comerWade Coriell both joined the international arbitration team as partners, and Erika Serran Toussaint came over from White & Case LLP as counsel.

With a practice that is split more or less equally between investor-state and commercial work, White & Case LLP has some 60 US-based international arbitration practitioners. On the state side, the practice is currently representing: Bulgaria in a number of ICSID cases arising from both bilateral investment treaties and the Energy Charter Treaty; the Philippines in ICSID cases including the cancellation of a $500m concession relating to Manila International Airport; Peru in multiple cases including a $800m case brought by The Renco Group and a $250m case brought by DP World; and Uzbekistan in a pair of cases with a total value of over $1bn. On the investor side, the team’s caseload includes representing Canadian mining group Gold Reserve in its $2bn expropriation case against Venezuela, and Florida-based electricity company TECO against Guatemala. Other recent highlights include securing a $58m award for unpaid fees and interest against Paraguay, of note since it was brought under an ‘umbrella clause’ in the Paraguay-Switzerland BIT. The US-based practice has ‘a front line of true breadth’. Global practice head Paul Friedland is ‘fantastic’ and ‘a very fine lawyer’; Carolyn Lamm is increasingly active as an arbitrator as well as acting as counsel; and Jonathan Hamilton heads up the firm’s well-established Latin American practice. With ‘a profound knowledge of the practicalities of representing sovereign governments’, Abby Cohen Smutny’s practice has a strong inflection towards banking and finance matters, including project finance. The ‘very impressive’ younger partners Andrea Menaker and Ank Santens are also recommended.

Providing ‘outstanding service at reasonable cost’, Covington & Burling LLP has ‘complete command of both international commercial and investor-state arbitration’ and ‘consistently gives sound comprehensive, and in-depth advice’. The team has extensive work in the oil and gas sector, where, along with its commercial docket, it is presently representing: Spanish investors against Yukos; ExxonMobil against Venezuela; and both Hess and Tullow against Equatorial Guinea at ICSID. Beyond oil and gas, the practice is particularly known for its expertise in insurance, sports and pharmaceuticals, among others sectors, and manages a caseload split evenly between commercial and investor-state matters. In other work, the team is representing: subsidiaries of Emmis Communications and Marquard Group in a case against Hungary arising from the expropriation of broadcast license investments; Metal-Tech against Uzbekistan, also at ICSID; and successfully defended its client in an ICC case relating to the maritime sector. ‘Calm but passionate about his work’, Oscar Garibaldi ‘is a strong intellectual leader and an excellent practitioner’. English/Spanish-bilingual and educated in both civil and common law, his advocacy is ‘thorough, convincing, sophisticated, and eloquent’, and he displays ‘complete knowledge of the sector right across the board’. ‘An outstanding strategist’, Eugene Gullandsees the angles and arguments before others’ do; and practice co-chair Allan Moore brings insurance expertise to the team. Miguel López Forastier’s ‘thorough analysis, insightful and persuasive advocacy and consistently reliable judgement’ is seeing him ‘rapidly make his way to the top echelons of international arbitration lawyers’. Marney Cheek and Thomas Cubbage are noted among a team of lawyers praised for being ‘as effective on their feet as on paper’.

With ‘brilliant and hardworking attorneys that provide consistently good service and feedbackHughes Hubbard & Reed LLP provides ‘timely and extremely reliable client-oriented legal support’: ‘it listens and then it gives us what we want’. A ‘longstanding and broad practice’ with ‘a strong commercial element’, it has experience under almost every set of international commercial arbitration rules, as well as in public international law, at forums including the ICSID and the US-Iran Claims Tribunal, and under NAFTA and BIT regulations. On the sovereign-side, the team’s caseload includes representing the Republic of Lithuania in an investor-state case under UNCITRAL rules; and Canada, in a $500m LCIA case brought by the US Government under the Softwood Lumber Agreement (SLA). In other work, the team is defending a Swedish telecom operator in an ICDR case against a motion to vacate an award brought by DigiTelCom; representing Forest Laboratories in a drug-licensing related AAA arbitration; and advising Turkish oil exploration and development company TPAO in an ICSID arbitration against the Republic of Kazakhstan. With ‘his extensive experience in international disputes both as an advocate and as an arbitrator’, clients ‘single out’ John Townsend as ‘one of the very best’: he ‘knows how to navigate the procedural thicket of international arbitration very well’. ‘An excellent advocate and a fine lawyer’, the New York-based John Fellas is co-chair of the firm’s practice group and a ‘deeply experienced practitioner’, particularly in AAA arbitration. ‘Always willing to go the extra mile’, Christopher Paparella is ‘brilliant, hard-working, and a true partner’. The ‘experiencedSteven Hammond and Daniel Weiner, who’s ‘very good when it comes to pharma-related work’, are both also noted.

With ‘top-level industry knowledge’ and ‘excellent service’, Sidley Austin LLP has ‘extensive capabilities’ of both investor-state and international commercial arbitration at an array of arbitral institutions. A varied caseload includes representing sovereigns such as Costa Rica, Peru and Turkey; and on the investor side, US and Canadian investors against Poland (among other mandates). On the commercial front, representations include a number of arbitrations on behalf of UCR at the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce (SCC); a Korea-based multinational in a case arising from a long-term supply agreement; and the developer of a Latin American biofuels project in a dispute with a contractor to be heard under ICC rules. Other work includes cases in the hydrocarbons, manufacturing and finance sectors. Coupling his ‘deep knowledge and experience in the area of bilateral investment treaty litigation’ with his ‘particular understanding of state-owned organisations in developing countries’, the ‘prompt and efficientStanimir Alexandrovacts as if the clients concerns were his own’. Also an experienced arbitrator, he is ‘supported by a capable team’ that includes the noteworthy Jennifer Haworth McCandless and Marinn Carlson, ‘both of whom demonstrate in depth knowledge of the subject law’. With a further two arbitration-dedicated partners (plus one counsel) in the Washington DC office, along with international commercial arbitration team members in the Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and Palo Alto, the team has ‘sufficient depth to ensure timely continuity’ in the handling of matters. It’s ‘a very good outfit with very good lawyers - they are brilliant’ comment clients.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP has built ‘an important and predominantly commercially-oriented practice’ in the international arbitration sector. ‘Particularly impressive on multi-jurisdictional work’, the team inspires ‘great confidence’. Recent commercial work includes an UNCITRAL case in the telecoms sector; the defence of private equity company Castle Harlan against fraud claims relating to the 2011 sale of a Quebec-based mining-products company; representing Indian company Devas Multimedia in a contract cancellation dispute with a company owned by the Government of India at the ICC; and advising Mainland Ventures (and certain affiliates) in an ICDR/AAA arbitration. On the investor-state side, it is advising Barbados-incorporated investor Gambrinus in expropriation-related ICSID proceedings against Venezuela. The practice also has a case in the sports sector, where it is representing Traffic Sports International and Traffic Sports USA in a dispute with the Confederación Sudamericana de Futbol (‘Conmebol’), concerning the alleged interference with/breach of an exclusive rights contract concerning the 2015 Copa América soccer tournament. As befits its commercial leaning, the practice is largely New York-based, and is led by the ‘deeply experienced’, and ‘very knowledgeable’ Tim Nelson. ‘Very friendly and fun to work with’, he’s held in ‘high regard’ by his peers and ‘has worked with investors, states, and commercial entities’. Other key practitioners include the ‘very impressive’ Marco Schnabl and the ‘very good’ Julie Bédard, who is ‘ever more prominent in Latin America’.

With a recent success on behalf of Hungary in an Energy Charter Treaty case against Electrabel, Arnold & Porter LLP took its tally of successive sovereign-side victories, stretching back as far as the year 2000, to fourteen. These cases include representing Chile in the long running $800m Victor Pey Casado case and Guatemala against Railroad Development Corporation, as well as cases on behalf of Panama, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador and other Latin American states. Despite its reputation for sovereign-side work, the practice also undertakes investor-side representations, such as Mercer International against Canada (a NAFTA Chapter 11 case); and has been seeking to boost its involvement in commercial cases, where it is presently representing engineering company Von Ardenne Anlagentechnik in a $70m ICC case against a Californian solar cell company. With considerable work across the energy sector, it also has extensive experience in TMT, communications, and construction, and increasingly, with the return of Whitney Debevoise from the World Bank in 2012, in banking and finance related cases. ‘A great practitioner at a great firm’, Washington DC-based Paolo Di Rosaleads from the front’, particularly on Latin American-related investment cases. ‘A fabulous practitioner’ with extensive experience in both commercial and investor-state work, Jean Kalicki today splits her time 50/50 between acting as counsel and sitting as an arbitrator. Latin America-focused partner Gaela Gehring Flores is ‘a noted practitioner’; senior counsel Maria Chedid brings Middle Eastern experience and knowledge to the practice, and Costa Rican national Patricio Grané adds trade-related expertise. The firm lost David Orta, who has left for the emergent practice at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP.

Perceived by competitors as ‘hyper-focused on oil and gas’, Baker Botts L.L.P. is undoubtedly best known for energy matters. However, with a current docket of active matters in excess of $120bn, it also has considerable arbitral involvement in the pharmaceutical, telecoms, construction, finance, intellectual property and life science sectors. With the firm’s ‘very reasonable fees’ and ‘high levels of service’, and a team characterised as ‘responsive, well-organised, thoughtful and experienced’ (as well as ‘level-headed under stress’), many clients ‘would include the practice on a list of candidates for any commercial arbitration’. Recent instructions include expropriation-related matters in central Asia, South America, Russia and Eastern Europe; oil concessions in Iraq and Africa; shipping disputes in Indonesia and the Philippines, software disputes in India, technology research and development disputes in the UK, and a variety of other contentious commercial, financial and energy-related matters around the world. The practice espouses a philosophy of maintaining a broad group of ‘first chair’ lawyers, foremost among them being Michael Lennon, who has just concluded the merits stage of major case in Brazil, and Michael Goldberg, co-chair of the firm’s international arbitration practice. ‘Bringing their ample experience to bear’, Lennon and Goldberg provide ‘very sound analysis of substantive and procedural matters’ and make ‘well thought out and sensible tactical judgements’. The ‘talented and experiencedJennifer Smith is ‘a key member of the practice’, and Ryan Bull is ‘very sound, smart and organised’ and ‘a very focused and logical thinker’. A Russian speaker, he has tried cases in a number of former CIS states as well as in Asia.

Chadbourne & Parke LLP’s clients profess to ‘having the feeling that we’re in good and capable hands’. Its arbitration team is comprised of ‘very competent professionals’, who, above-and-beyond their legal and technical knowledge, ‘are prompt, endowed with good sense, very objective in their opinions and firm on the counselling of the strategy to follow’. With a growing practice in the emerging markets, the practice has experience across the arbitration spectrum including experience in gas revision disputes and a growing focus upon the technology and pharmaceutical sectors. With clients including AES, Bechtel, Pfizer, PEMEX, ENEL and Oiltanking, the practice is currently handling numerous cases at the ICC, ICDR, and under UNCITRAL rules; as well as a public international law case under the Alien Tort Statute and Torture Victim Protection Act. ‘Always thinking a few steps ahead’, the very ‘experienced and knowledgeableOliver Armas provides ‘key strategic advice’, and the ‘highly analyticalThomas Piepersweats every detail’. The two of them ‘have a deep understanding of the international arbitration process, are always well-prepared, keep us informed at all times and are responsive to our inquiries’. Moreover, the practice has recently brought over Mark Beckett and Rachel Thorn from Latham & Watkins LLP. Providing ‘advice that never misses the mark’, the pair have ‘amazing attention to detail while always keeping the main ‘themes’ of defence in mind’. David Raim brings insurance industry-related expertise to the practice and recently led on a successful $275m claim brought by St Paul Reinsurance. While the team recently lost Ignacio Suarez Anzorena who returned to his former firm, it can also call on Luis Enrique Graham who splits his time between the firm’s New York and Mexico City offices.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP favours a pure lock-step structure that minimizes internal competition for clients and thereby facilitates the process of forming trans-national, multi-office teams that is so essential to international arbitral practice. Representing investors and sovereigns in both investor-state and commercial arbitration, the practice has accrued ‘huge experience across the entire sector’. On the sovereign side, the firm continues to represent Argentina in the ‘Abaclat’ case, the controversial mass claim before ICSID; act for the Russian Federation, in three parallel UNCITRAL arbitrations brought by former majority shareholders in Yukos, as well as in a case brought by Yukos minority shareholder RosInvestCo at the SCC; and act for Iraq in a case brought by the German state-owned company, Transportmaschinen Handelshaus. It has also recently represented Sierra Leone and the Dominican Republic in ICC cases, and on the investor side, is representing Adria Beteiligungs in an UNCITRAL cases against Croatia. In commercial work, where the firm has ‘developed an excellent and specialised practice’, the team has extensive experience in gas contract price revision matters (including representing ENI and Promgas), and in the telecommunications sector, where it has defended Telecom Italia in a number of ICC cases. Senior partner Jonathan Blackman splits his time 50-50 between London and New York and is ‘a significant and impressive player’. Handling cases across the globe, the ‘savvy and experiencedHoward Zelbo is a lead lawyer of ‘great expertise’. Matthew Slater has led on many of the team’s sovereign side representations; and Jeffrey Rosenthal works on much of the firm’s commercial work. Younger partner Carmine Boccuzzi Jr is also noted. The deeply experienced William McGurn is now a senior counsel at the firm.

Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP’s policy of only representing sovereigns in investor-state work sets it apart from the vast majority of its competitors and has seen it carve out a notable practice with extensive activity in Africa, Latin America and the former CIS states. Recent work includes advising Uganda on a $425m case brought by Heritage Oil & Gas; representing Venezuela in two cases against Mobil (in the first to be settled, the plaintiff was awarded $750m of its $12bn claim), and one against ConocoPhillips; and acting for Kazakhstan against Caratube in a $2bn case which was dismissed on jurisdictional grounds with costs awarded to the defendant. In commercial arbitration, the firm also works with investors but presently has a number of sizeable ICC cases where it is representing states. The 80-strong practice includes ‘many multi-lingual senior lawyers and associates. They can handle Spanish, French and Arabic, for example’, and demonstrates technical expertise ‘outside the usual skill-sets of lawyers’, which ‘help in the cross-examination of the other side’s experts’. Currently managing more than $100bn in claims, the group is applauded for being ‘superb at creating real teams’ in conjunction with its clients, and for providing ‘unrivalled service’. A ‘truly remarkable advocate and orator with total control of his material’, George Kahale III is ‘the soul of the firm’ and, ‘from a leadership standpoint, the strongest’. Mark O’Donoghue and Benard Preziosi Jr are also ‘excellent’: Preziosi is ‘always incredibly engaged, especially on the economic side of matters’, and O’Donoghue is ‘outstanding’ and ‘a delight to work with’. Miriam Harwood is also noted and is currently leading on a pending Turkmenistan case at ICSID.

Fulbright & Jaworski LLP’s Houston-based practice has a hugely impressive clientele in the oil and gas sector, including ConocoPhillips, El Paso, Yukos, Noble Energy, and Transierra (a joint venture whose members are Petrobras, Repsol and Total). The team is currently handling cases involving unilateral changes to the tax and royalty regimes governing the licenses under which its client undertook exploration activity; damages claims arising from alleged faulty manufacture (claims likely to generate a number of associated ICDR cases); the pre-arbitral preparations and strategy for a probable ICSID case resulting from a sovereign’s breaches of applicable BIT clauses; and representing the hydrocarbons unit of a major multinational in multiple ICDR cases arising from the termination of distribution contracts. Other matters include cases relating to price determination, a deferred payment agreement, contractual and domain name arbitrations, and one of the first cases under the under the new 2012 ICC Rules. Moreover, with the firm’s long-planned merger with Norton Rose LLP coming in to effect mid-year, the practice will gain an even greater global footprint. Co-head of both the firm’s international department and its arbitration and ADR practice group, the ‘hugely experiencedC Mark Baker has ‘a terrific reputation and expertise’. Another very experienced practitioner, Kevin O’Gorman recently led on the successful defence of a client against damages claimed for alleged breaches of an EPC contract. Recently relocated to the firm’s New York office, Aníbal Sabater has a primarily Latin America-oriented practice and increasing engagement with finance-related arbitration work.

Lauded by clients as a ‘premier firm’ with ‘extraordinarily talented lawyers’, albeit at ‘the upper end of the price scale’, Shearman & Sterling LLP has a ‘very strong reputation in international arbitration’. ‘It’s the best US firm we’ve worked with because of the quality of satellite offices; it has done the best job at globalizing its service’, say clients. The practice has strong experience in the construction, chemicals and mining sectors, in particular, and has developed an affinity for handling politically freighted cases, such as its successful representation of Dow Chemical in a $2.5bn case against Petrochemicals Industries Company (PIC), an entity wholly-owned by the Kuwaiti state. In other work, the team is representing: Venezuela in three investor-state cases at ICSID; a Middle Eastern contractor against an African mining company in a case seated in Toronto; and is challenging a number of ICC arbitration awards on behalf of Abengoa. ‘A very practical person who is always looking at how best to obtain a result’, the ‘hugely experienced and very impressiveHenry Weisburgalways has his strategy clearly defined’. Jonathan Greenblatt has ‘notable construction sector dispute experience’, Christopher Ryan brings treaty-side expertise, and counsel Katia Yannaca-Small, who was formerly at the OECD, the perspective of a multilateral and considerable knowledge of public international law.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP operates ‘a truly broad international arbitration practice’ that ‘impresses’ with its ‘proactive and trial-ready approach’. With experience of all the major arbitral institutions and rules, and active across the full-spectrum of industry and commercial sectors, the team is increasingly involved in both Asia and Latin America, and is actively growing its engagement in the IP, construction and pharmaceutical sectors. It is also set apart by a ‘marquee’ practice in the insurance and reinsurance sectors where it has represented many of the industry leading players in cases relating to asbestos, hazardous waste, residual value insurance, and healthcare and computer warranty programs. The team’s current caseload includes an IT-related case in UNCITRAL ad hoc proceedings seated in London; a private equity-related case under ICDR rules, and a $500m pharmaceuticals case. One recent victory saw the team successfully defend MatlinPatterson against the US enforcement of a $55m ICC award handed down in Brazil. Co-chair of the firm’s international arbitration and dispute resolution practice, Robert Smit is universally recognised by his peers as ‘the lead man’, and ‘a very strong practitioner’. His recent mandates have included Hanwha Group and ORIX Corporation in a $1bn ICC case arising out of the sale of Korea Life Insurance Company; and acting for General Electric and Bechtel in ICC and AAA arbitrations stemming from India’s expropriation of the Dabhol Power Project in Maharashtra state. The Washington DC-based Peter Thomas’ recent mandates include a successful ad hoc oil and gas royalties arbitration in Melbourne, and representing the Dominican Republic in a pair of ICSID cases and a related ICC case stemming from the privatisation of the country’s electricity sector. Having spent the last two years at ICSID, Janet Whittaker returns to firm as counsel with up-to-the-minute investor-state experience. Barry Ostrager leads on insurance-related matters.

At the top of the league’, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP is ‘commercially-minded, highly responsive, pragmatic and skilful’. With particular prestige in commercial matters and solid knowledge of investor-treaty work (solely on the investor-side), the ‘exceedingly hard working’ team provides ‘outstanding service in all respects’. A genuinely broad practice, but nevertheless one perhaps best known for finance-related matters, it has experience at all the major arbitral institutions: AAA, ICC, LCIA, UNCITRAL and ICSID, the Stockholm and Zurich Chambers of Commerce and the Singapore International Arbitration Centre, as well as NAFTA investment disputes and ad hoc arbitrations. An impressive clientele includes AB InBev, Bancolombia, Goldman Sachs, Grupo Techint, Microsoft, Occidental Petroleum, Philips, Standard Chartered Bank, Telefónica and UBS Securities. The current caseload includes advising the Canadian owners of a mine in a former Soviet state in relation to the government’s demands to renegotiate the concession; counsel to a project development company in relation to measures taken by an African sovereign that suggest gradual expropriation; and representing a European-headquartered bank in regard to three separate ICDR cases brought by Latin American investors in relation to the $60bn Madoff Ponzi scheme. ‘The quintessential arbitratorJoseph Neuhaus is ‘absolutely first rate - very smart, very capable, very knowledgeable and very careful’. John Hardiman has extensive experience in telecoms-related disputes and has represented TeliaSonera in a series of arbitrations against Cukurova for control of Turkcell, culminating in a $932m award, one of the largest commercial settlements to date. Ted Rogers and Rick Fessel ‘work as a great team: focused, dedicated and responsive. Veterans in this field, they’re very enjoyable to work with’.

Formidable and respectable opponent’, Allen & Overy LLPachieves results’ and is a ‘first-rate advocate in arbitration proceedings’. The practice currently handles a predominantly commercial caseload, but nevertheless has extensive experience in investor-state work where it represents sovereigns and investors equally. Recent ICSID work includes representing claimants OPIC et al against Ecuador in the Quito Airport dispute, and defending Peru against claims brought by Chinese company Tza Yap Shum. Current work includes representing Trinidad and Tobago’s state hydrocarbons company, Petrotrin, in ICC and LCIA claims totalling some $300m against World GTL; and acting for Belize Social Development Limited in the US enforcement of an LCIA award against the state of Belize. Other cases concern the liquefied natural gas, mining and power generation sectors, and arising from issues such as contract and concession cancellations and expropriation. While the firm is growing its US practice, the small team has benefited from its stability: its members ‘know each other well’, ‘work very closely together’ and can ‘integrate others as necessary’, fostering the development of ‘very good relations with clients’. ‘The undoubted leader of the practice’, Louis Kimmelman is ‘a superb trial counsel for international arbitrations’. A ‘great strategist’ with a ‘creativity borne of experience’, he ‘views arbitral cases in their greater global context, which is as important as the result itself when one is looking at a business moving forward’. Moreover, he has ‘continued building and forming his team over the last ten years’ so that his more junior colleagues ‘have developed into independent practitioners’. With a broad practice across a number of international markets, ‘impressive’ senior counsel Dana MacGrath is ‘totally meticulous’ and ‘has a clarity in her writing that is enviable’. With both civil and common-law training, Nicole Duclos is ‘one of the best prepared international arbitration lawyers one is likely to meet’, and ‘exceptionally intelligent, she is exhaustive, absolutely indefatigable, and leaves no stone unturned’.

Traditionally a commercial international arbitration practice, Baker & McKenzie has a growing participation in investor/state treaty work, albeit primarily on the investor side. With practitioners spread across seven US offices - New York, Miami, Chicago, Houston, San Francisco, Palo Alto, and Washington DC - the firm has impressive domestic US coverage in conjunction with its network of more than 60 foreign offices. The team is currently handling arbitration cases in Asia, Latin America and Europe. Its recent work includes the successful defence of Petrobras and leasing company BCLC in an ad hoc arbitration under UNCITRAL rules concerning an EPC contract; representing investors in Longreef Investment in a $500m ICSID case concerning the expropriation of a coffee company; and the representation of Grupo Eulen in a consolidated ICC case involving material misrepresentation and fraud by the sellers of an acquisition target. Other matters included cases arising from corporate acquisitions, power and gas projects, and royalties and supply contracts. Co-chair of the firm’s global international arbitration practice group and also head of the 38-strong international arbitration practice for North America, Grant Hanessian is ‘a great practitioner’ with a ‘strong commercial profile’. Brendan Cook and Donald Hayden are also noted and the team can also call on the hugely experienced senior counsel Lawrence Newman.

With ‘service levels commensurate with the top Wall Street firms’, the ‘excellent’ boutique firm Chaffetz Lindsey LLPpunches above its weight’. Having carved out a niche handling (predominantly commercial) matters that are uneconomical for larger firms (and ‘having done a great job of doing so’), it is ‘also one of the few top-tier firms in New York to be really flexible in terms of different kinds of fee arrangements with clients’. In present work, the team is, in conjunction with local co-counsel, representing a major Turkish company in a $1bn dispute arising from failed negotiations to sell a controlling stake in a Turkish telecommunications company; representing Iran in a second (pending) case to be heard before the Iran-US Claims Tribunal (IUSCT); and representing Liberia in a $750m case brought by Diamond Fields for an alleged breach of a mining license. Other work includes ICC and ICDR cases, either as lead or co-counsel, in the finance, energy and construction sectors, and concerning issues such as international sales contracts and joint ventures. The firm’s boutique format also limits conflict issues, freeing the partners to provide expert opinion on questions of arbitral law and procedure, and second opinions on the advice proffered by other firms. With ‘knowledgeable and hard-working’ lawyers who are ‘quick to respond to the clients’ needs’ and ‘give sensible, business-oriented, and practical advice’, it is ‘the depth of its team that is a key strength of the firm’. Head of the international arbitration practice at Clifford Chance until 2009, founding partner David Lindsey is ‘a leader in the area’ and clients ‘like knowing he is available if the need arises’. ‘A very measured counsel’, the ‘extremely responsive’ James Hosking ‘picks up on business specifics quickly’, ‘explains things very clearly and concisely’ and displays ‘excellent business judgement’. Counsel Jennifer Gorskie completes a trio whom peers describe as ‘outstanding international arbitration practitioners’. ‘Smart and responsive’, she exemplifies the ‘expertise and young talent’ in a firm that has ‘a bright future’.

Over time, I’ve worked with quite a number of law firms in the United States but I keep going back toFried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP, comments one client: ‘I value our relationship because of the lawyers’ reactivity, and business and industry knowledge’. The team is representing: a large French company in an ICC case in London arising out of a patent licensing agreement; a Middle East energy joint venture in a variety of on-going disputes under ICC rules; and Total in ICC arbitration with a South American state entity in a breach of contract case. It also recently successfully defended a large French aerospace company in a $350m ICDR damages-claim arising from a satellite purchase agreement. Head of the firm’s international arbitration practice group, the ‘first rateElliot Polebaum is lauded for his ‘availability and appropriate advice’ and clients note the value of his fluency in French when working in francophone jurisdictions. Moreover, in Douglas Baruch and younger partner Joseph LoBue, both of whom have experience acting as ‘first chair’, ‘he has gathered around him a team of real quality’ whose ‘expertise and experience imbues clients with confidence’.

With established strength in energy, oil & gas, hospitality and mining, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP’s arbitral practice is growing its involvement in the technology and pharmaceutical sectors. As well as its broad engagement in commercial and treaty work, the practice also has a notable specialisation in political risk insurance arbitration, where it works extensively with multilateral agencies such as OPIC and MIGA, as well as with private insurers. The team’s current caseload includes representing: California-based real estate firm H&H Enterprises in a pending ICSID dispute relating to a multi-hundred million dollar investment in the Egyptian tourism sector; Pac Rim Cayman in a $700m case against El Salvador; and a $500m case against the Sultanate of Oman arising from the expropriation of a major limestone quarry. On the sovereign side, the team is presently working with the governments of Canada, the Czech Republic and Hungary. Co-chair of the firm’s international arbitration practice, Arif Ali is ‘a well-known figure in arbitration circles’, ‘deeply experienced’ and ‘a very strong lawyer’. His fellow Washington DC partners Alexandre de Gramont and Ted Posner, arrived with him from Crowell & Moring LLP in early 2012 and ‘the practice is now is now beginning to fire on all cylinders’. Charles Roh and the ‘very experiencedEric Ordway recently won a $400m settlement on behalf of The Williams Companies in an ICSID case against Venezuela. ‘A great up-and-coming lawyer’, the New York-based Samaa Haridi also came over from Crowell & Moring LLP; fluent in French and Arabic, she is equally at home in both civil and common law traditions.

Repeatedly applauded for excellence on ‘response times, business acumen and industry knowledge’, and for ‘providing appropriate advice and value for money’, WilmerHaleis a great firm’ and ‘clearly world class’. The US-based disputes team has recently handled matters for clients from around the globe, and at all the important arbitration venues, in the electronics, finance, insurance, medical, hydrocarbons, pharmaceutical, technology, telecoms, and transportation sectors. With its ‘significant experience in international arbitration’, ‘well-considered procedural tactics’ and ‘deep knowledge of the economic aspects of the business’ in question, the ‘highly professional’ team is characterised by ‘excellent service levels’. Vice-chair of the firm’s international arbitration practice, the ‘excellent’ Rachael Kent is regarded as ‘top in the field’. Arriving recently from Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, James Carter is ‘a very good guy indeed’ and ‘an extraordinary practitioner’, but is increasingly dedicated to sitting as an arbitrator rather than as counsel. John Pierce and John Trenor split their respective New York and Washington DC practices with time in the firm’s London office.

With the arrival of Aldo Badini from Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, and Joseph Tirado from Norton Rose LLP at the firms New York and London offices respectively, Winston & Strawn LLP is ramping up its resources in this practice. Clients report ‘an experienced, responsive and client-focused team made up of talented international advocates of a very high quality: it’s astute, strategically gifted and acts as if the clients concerns were its own’. With ‘extremely impressive experience’ in the investor-state treaty work that constitutes the bulk of its caseload, and ‘a wide and appropriate knowledge of US law and the US legal system’, one peer comments the team would be ‘our first choice of co-counsel’. The team is representing: a Middle Eastern government in competing proceedings under ICSID and ICC rules and stemming from construction and public tender matters; Mckesson Corporation, in a long-running case against Iran at the IUSCT; and Ecuador in its long running case against Chevron & Texaco, under UNCITRAL rules. It also recently obtained an ICSID counterclaim win on behalf of a European state. Global co-chair of the international arbitration practice Mark Bravinis one of the most knowledgeable investor-state arbitration lawyers practising today, with exceptional knowledge of and enormous experience in state responsibility and investment treaty protection’. ‘The experience, knowledge and gravitas that Mark brings to the table are extremely valuable’. ‘A knowledgeable and strategically gifted attorney’, John Roesser’s hands-on approach and good availability make him a client favourite, as does his ability to ‘see the path to a resolution and achieve it in minimal time’. Senior counsel C MacNeil Mitchell, and Eric Bloom and Tomás Leonard, are all recommended. Of counsel Maria Kostytska, who works out of both the Washington DC and Paris offices, ‘is younger but already has experience sitting as an arbitrator and is very promising’.

International trade

Index of tables

  1. International trade
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Covington & Burling LLP continues to focus its practice on Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) issues, economic sanctions, export controls, compliance and regulatory matters and developing its expertise in US-China trade relations. The firm is currently advising a non-US oil company on the application of US sanctions against Iran and the application of the Iran Threat Reduction and Syria Human Rights Act of 2012, as well as on various Executive Orders. Mark Plotkin and David Fagan advised BAE Systems on national security matters regarding its potential merger with EADS NV. Co-chair of international trade John Veroneau is leading regulatory advice to the Economic Cities Authority of Saudi Arabia, a long-term and broad project, which ranges from telecommunications to governance structures and aims to attract investment and create jobs in Saudi Arabia. Senior of counsel Steven Shaw, New York-based Lynn Neils and Robert Nichols joined the firm in 2012 and Jonathan Gimblett was promoted to the partnership. Co-chairs of international trade Peter Lichtenbaum and Stuart Eizenstat are key names and Peter Flanagan is an ‘expert’ export controls lawyer.

Hogan Lovells LLP’s ‘very professional’ and ‘proactive’ practice is ‘highly client-responsive’ and is valued for its ‘expertise in litigation’ and ‘expert advice on trade relations’. The firm acts for governments and corporations and advises on areas including export controls, economic sanctions, trade remedies, WTO disputes, CFIUS representations, anti-corruption compliance and customs compliance. Deen Kaplan, who is ‘valued as a legal tactician’, and Mark McConnell, a ‘super litigator’ and a ‘strategist and statesman’, make a ‘formidable combination’ and, along with the rest of the team, ‘bring a distinct gravitas to international trade disputes that serves the client well’. Kaplan and McConnell continue to lead advice to the Chinese government in the countervailing duty and antidumping investigations in the solar panels dispute. The pair, in conjunction with the firm’s Moscow office, are also defending Ford Motor Company’s Ford Ortosan joint venture in the Russian antidumping investigation into light commercial vehicles (LCV) from Poland, Italy and Turkey. Craig Lewis is ‘exceptional’ at guiding clients through antidumping trade laws and forms a ‘great team’ with T Clark Weymouth. Anthony Capobianco was promoted to the partnership in January 2013. Beth Peters, who does a ‘great job’, and Ajay Kuntamukkala have ‘extensive industry knowledge’ and are ‘on point’.

Traditionally strong in WTO matters, the ‘excellent’ and ‘extremely responsive’ practice at Sidley Austin LLP also advises on trade remedies, export controls, economic sanctions, CFIUS and customs issues. Richard Belanger is ‘an outstanding customs and trade attorney’ and ‘a strategic thinker who can operate effectively at any level - with customs officials, senior trade staff in both the House and Senate, and with trade professionals in the private sector’. James Mendenhall is representing Loral Aerospace on CFIUS matters and the ‘proactiveLisa Crosby continues to advise a number of multinationals on export controls and economic sanctions. ‘Superb’ and ‘energetic’ team head Andrew Shoyer is representing Grupo Transmerquin in the use of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and other treaty-based protections to address the alleged unfair treatment of US exports of caustic soda in Mexico. The firm’s Geneva office continues to be crucial in its WTO work, with the Washington DC and Geneva offices recently collaborating on work for Airbus. Richard Weiner and Neil Ellis are recommended. Rajib Pal was promoted to counsel in January 2012.

Clients praise Steptoe & Johnson LLP for its ‘excellent responsiveness, wonderful business acumen and subject knowledge and insight’. The firm provides ‘great client care’, ‘represents good value for money’ and gives ‘dependable advice’. Department head Susan Esserman has a particular focus on China and extensive experience of representing clients in China-based trade investigations, trade policy and market access and regulatory matters. In addition to the firm’s increasing focus on China, the firm has also targeted the Latin American market and has strengthened that practice with the additions of Brigida Benitez and Brazil-trained lawyer Pablo Bentes; both are based in Washington DC. Richard Cunningham is ‘widely respected by both friends and foes in Washington trade circles’ and has an ‘excellent track record of nurturing talent’. Thomas Trendl, Mark Moran, Joel Kaufman, Alice Kipel and of counsel Gregory McCue are also recommended.

WilmerHale’s ‘seasoned’ team has extensive experience in the technology sector and has recently focused on cloud computing issues in connection with international trade. The team’s 18 fee-earners have experience in WTO disputes, trade remedies litigation and export control matters. The firm is currently representing The Boeing Company in a high-profile case challenging the EU’s failure to comply with a WTO ruling regarding subsidies to Airbus. Chair of the international trade practice Charlene Barshefsky and Naboth van den Broek, who was promoted to special counsel in January 2012, are representing the Alliance for Clean Technology Innovation on WTO, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) debates. Elsewhere, the firm has also represented a government in a WTO dispute involving China’s raw materials trade policy and assisted the complainant in a dispute before the WTO panel and WTO appellate body. David Weller and Robert Novick are recommended.

Valerie Slater’s team at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP has experience in trade remedies, trade compliance and OFAC regulations. Key highlights included acting for Samsung Electronics Company before the ITC. The firm defended Samsung against a petition filed by a competitor and achieved a vote of 5-0 in Samsung’s favour, rejecting the imposition of antidumping duties. Elsewhere, the firm acted for P&H Mining in trade controls enforcement litigation with assistance in securing a no-action letter from OFAC and advised Savelovskiy in its removal from the US Trade Representative’s (USTR) notorious markets list. Wynn Segall, who is recommended, focuses on export controls, economic sanctions and anti-bribery matters.

With a number of former government advisers in the ‘excellent’ team at Arnold & Porter LLP, the firm has an excellent relationship with departments of state and has a number of personnel with a high level of security clearance. The team, numbering 12 partners and 35 attorneys, is led by the ‘superb’ John Bellinger and John Barker. The firm’s CFIUS practice remains a key strength and the team acts for foreign and domestic clients in sectors including aerospace, energy and defence. Lawrence Schneider, head of the trade remedies and trade policy practice, continues to advise longstanding client, the government of Israel, on a range of international trade matters. The firm is representing Giorgio Foods Inc and PS Chez Sidney. Michael Shor, arguing the case before the Federal Circuit, raised novel and constitutional challenges to the Byrd Amendment on the eligibility of subsidies and successfully argued that PS Chez Sidney could not be denied subsidies. Barker, head of export controls and economic sanctions, heads a team that acts for clients including BAE Systems, Almenia Aeronautica and Corning International.

Operating from offices in Washington DC, New York, Chicago and San Francisco, Baker & McKenzie has endeavored to nationalize its practice to service clients across the US. Clients value this national and global reach as it enables them to ‘resolve matters expeditiously’. The firm ‘strives to see issues from the business perspective’, displays a ‘tremendous depth of knowledge’ and delivers ‘fantastic service’. The firm is active in export controls and economic sanctions, customs compliance, WTO, anti-bribery, anti-corruption and FCPA and trade remedies. Robert Eisen, who is ‘concerned with delivering value’, provides global customs and supply chain planning and advice to clients such as Coldwater Creek. Jonathan Poling joined the firm in April 2012 from the Department of Justice and is viewed as ‘a top practitioner in our field’ by peers and is well respected for his ‘knowledge of the law and his professionalism’. Clients view Michael (Ted) Murphy as ‘a "go-to" attorney’ for customs strategy issues, and Nicholas Coward and Sylwia Lis are also recommended.

Crowell & Moring LLP advises clients on export controls, trade litigation, customs, CFIUS, OFAC, economic sanctions and WTO issues, and free trade agreements. Usefully, the firm has an office in Brussels and is able to advise globally on trade litigation matters and on parallel US and EU antidumping and countervailing/anti-subsidy investigations. The firm advises national governments, trade associations and corporate clients on trade remedy matters and has experience in advising producers, importers and exporters on the FCPA, Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). Clients include Alcoa, DuPont, Caterpillar, General Motors, Mazda, Electrolux and Bosch. International trade department head Jeffrey Snyder is ‘excellent’.

Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLPbrings real expertise matched by a good solid litigation strategy’. Following on from the practice’s expansion last year, with the recruitment of Joanne Osendarp and John Ryan, the team has recently been bolstered by the arrival of Matthew Nicely, who was formerly head of international trade and customs at Thompson Hine LLP. Nicely is ‘first rate’, a ‘thoughtful guy and aggressive advocate’, whose chief strength is in trade remedies, customs and FCPA work. Key highlights included advising Cree on the President’s Export Control Reform Initiative. Elsewhere, Kenneth Pierce, head of the international trade remedies and customs group, is leading advice to HBO Latin America with regard to foreign market access. Osendarp, John Townsend and John Wood continued to represent the Canadian government in an arbitration under London Court of Arbitration rules concerning the Softwood Lumber Agreement (SLA) between the US and Canada. The claim brought by the US was rejected and the tribunal agreed with Canada that the US had failed to show a breach of the SLA. Amanda DeBusk, who chairs the international trade group, has ‘a professional and expert manner’ and co-counsel describe a ‘very positive experience working with her’. Osendarp is ‘a senior experienced trade lawyer of international repute blessed with superb judgment’. Eric Parnes has ‘unrivalled attention to detail’.

King & Spalding LLP has a strong expertise in WTO disputes, and this is underpinned by an office in Geneva. In addition to its WTO practice, the team also represents clients in trade remedies, trade compliance and FCPA matters, and has a growing practice in export controls and economic sanctions and foreign direct investment investigations before CFIUS. The group provides ‘excellent response times, service and results’. Recent instructions include representing US Magnesium LLC, as petitioners, in antidumping proceedings on imports from China and Russia. Other clients include NBCUniversal, Dow Chemical and Lafarge. Stephen Orava, who divides his time between Washington DC and Geneva, ‘combines excellent business understanding with world-class legal expertise in the international trade area to deliver practical, actionable advice’, and ‘strives to ensure that his entire team delivers value and satisfies the client’s needs’. The ‘articulateJoseph Dorn has ‘substantial experience in international trade matters’. John Richter rejoined the firm in August 2012 from his position as vice president and deputy general counsel at WellCare Health Plans and, in October 2012, counsel Joseph Laroski joined from the Office of the United States Trade Representative.

Latham & Watkins LLP’s practice focuses on export controls, sanctions and customs, FCPA, anti-corruption and CFIUS. The firm has deliberately chosen to distance itself from traditional international trade work, including trade remedies, and has focused the practice as an extension of the firm’s robust white collar litigation department. This approach has been successful for the firm, as it has recently seen an increase in instructions relating to trade and economic sanctions against Iran and Syria by the US and the UN. The ‘absolutely outstandingWilliam McGlone, a ‘superb practitioner in export and sanctions’, leads a team of over 30 attorneys and continues to specialize in ITAR and EAR cases. Edward Shapiro focuses his practice on CFIUS matters and Les Carnegie advises on export controls. Recent work for the firm includes advising on the voluntary disclosure of a violation of US export control laws, advising on compliance with US sanctions and representing a multinational company in multiple criminal and administrative proceedings.

Traditionally a petitioner-side firm, Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP continues to focus its practice on trade remedies and particularly administrative reviews and sunset reviews. Key industry focuses include manufacturing and technology. CFIUS expert Ivan Schlager and counsel Malcolm Tuesley are advising Toshiba on its acquisition of a 20% stake in Westinghouse Electric Company LLC from Nuclear Energy Holdings LLC, a subsidiary of the Shaw Group. This stable, compact team also includes the recommended Robert Lighthizer, Jeffrey Gerrish and James Hecht.

Clients praise Arent Fox LLP for its in-depth knowledge of international trade, understanding of clients’ businesses and its ‘customized’ and ‘effective’ advice. Matthew Nolan oversees a team that provides an ‘excellent’ level of service and advises on trade litigation, export controls, customs law and trade policy. The firm has recently received a number of new instructions from Argentina as well as NatureSweet, a Mexican tomato producer. The firm is involved in the high-profile issue of solar panel subsidies and John Gurley is leading advice to Trina Solar, a Chinese manufacturer of photovoltaic modules, used in solar panels. Kay Georgi is providing global compliance advice to 3M regarding export and import controls and anti-boycott compliance. The firm usually acts on the side of respondents, but notably managing partner Matthew Clark and Matthew Kanna are representing CP-Kelco in antidumping petitions before the ITC. The case alleges that imports of xanthum gum from Austria and China have caused material injury to the US xanthum gum industry. Michael Burton left the firm to establish a boutique practice in January 2013.

Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP recruited an international trade team from Winston & Strawn LLP in January 2012. Although, this is a new practice area for the firm, the majority of the team has been together for 25 years and has substantial ‘clout’ in the market and clients have followed the team in its move. Key strengths are in trade remedies and WTO work, and, geographically, the group has significant experience in Brazil and East Asia. Indeed, the experience of department head William Barringer and Daniel Porter in East Asia makes a good fit with the wider firm’s attempts to grow its business in the region. Porter and James Durling share a ‘great dynamic’ and have ‘strong knowledge’; clients single them out as ‘two of the top trade lawyers’. This ‘very professional’ team is ‘willing to get down and dirty in the details’, and a key highlight for the firm is its work in GPX International Tires v United States. Following a 2011 victory on behalf of the client at the US Court of Appeal for the Federal Circuit, the team is now in court concerning alleged unconstitutional legislation.

Judith Lee chairs Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP’s 13 fee-earner international trade practice group. With offices across the US and Europe, the firm is well placed to advise on import and export issues, transnational and investment control compliance, WTO disputes, NAFTA and commercial trade litigation and policy. Lee and colleagues have provided economic sanctions advice to companies including AECOM Technology Corporation, Facebook, National Bank of Abu Dhabi, and Isis Mobile Wallet. Donald Harrison and John Christopher Wood are the key names for customs and trade remedies, and have provided advice to a raft of clients. The firm has a longstanding relationship with American Honda with Harrison and Wood advising the client on a range of customs issues, including classification, valuation and country of origin marking. Harrison and Wood are currently representing the same client in ongoing Chinese government antidumping and countervailing duty investigations of exports of automobiles from the US.

Primarily acting for petitioners in the domestic industry, Kelley Drye & Warren LLP’s ‘outstanding’ team is praised for its ‘respect, integrity, commitment, hard work and team work’. Clients appreciate the firm’s strong team ethos and winning mentality and rate the firm ‘very highly’. In 2012, R Alan Luberda and the ‘knowledgeable and aggressive’ Michael Coursey advised the American Honey Producers Association and Sioux Honey Association to defeat Chinese schemes to circumvent an antidumping order. Other recent highlights include advising the Flowserve Corporation on an ongoing voluntary self-disclosure process before OFAC and BIS, including advising on an export controls and economic sanctions audit. Trade remedies practice head Kathleen Cannon ‘has an engaging personality that sets a good environment for accomplishment’; export controls practice head Eric McClafferty has ‘excellent "big picture" wisdom’; Jeffrey Beckington ‘asks excellent questions and listens well’; and Paul Rosenthal is ‘a leading light’. Although less active in this area than previously, ‘respected leader’ David Hartquist is valued by clients for being able to ‘pull people together to achieve the desired outcome’. John Herrmann was promoted to the partnership in 2012. Darryl Jackson left the firm in July 2012.

Head of the global regulatory practice and international trade practice Carolyn Gleason heads the team at McDermott Will & Emery LLP. Notably, the firm opened a new office in Seoul in February 2012 following a loosening of the restrictions allowing US firms to operate in South Korea. The team, led by Gleason and Pamela Walther, continues to be active in the longstanding ‘Banana Wars’ dispute, where it acts for Chiquita Brands International. Following on from assisting in negotiating settlement agreements, the firm has organized a coalition of interests to fight new export restrictions mandated by the EU, which allegedly violate WTO rules. The firm traditionally acts for a number of agribusiness clients and is currently advising a coalition of US agribusiness interests in pursuing steps under WTO bodies and US laws to investigate and redress the allegedly unfair sales of Chinese agricultural products in the US and other markets. Jay Eizenstat, who joined the firm in January 2012 from Miller & Chevalier Chartered, has particular expertise in Asia and is currently advising the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) on market-access disputes in Indonesia and the Philippines.

The team at Miller & Chevalier Chartered advises on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), anti-corruption, export controls, economic sanctions and global compliance. Kathryn Cameron Atkinson heads the international department, while John Davis coordinates the FCPA practice and Larry Christensen coordinates the exports team. David Resnicoff joined the firm in October 2011 from a compliance role at Baxter International. Barbara Linney, who joined in June 2012 from Blank Rome LLP, has strong expertise in the export controls area and the maritime industry. Senior associate Jian Bin Gao joined the firm’s Washington DC office in February 2012, after moving from the San Francisco office of Morrison & Foerster LLP, and Matteson Ellis has rejoined the firm’s anti-corruption practice as special counsel. Laura Billings and David Hardin were promoted as new members in January 2013. Homer Moyer is recommended.

New York-based Palmina Fava and Washington DC-based Morgan Miller co-chair the global compliance and disputes team at Paul Hastings LLP. Within the team, Timothy Dickinson heads the FCPA and anti-corruption practice and Hamilton Loeb and Scott Flicker lead the global trade controls practice, while the firm is also active in trade remedies. Traditionally, the firm has strong experience in representing clients in the pharmaceuticals industry. The firm is currently advising The Limited Brands on compliance with anti-corruption laws and regulations and serves as principal outside counsel to the Embassy of the United Arab Emirates, providing advice on free trade agreement negotiations, trade remedy matters and government immunity issues. Behnam Dayanim joined the firm in October 2012 from Axinn Veltrop & Harkrider and Corinne Lammers was promoted to the partnership in February 2013.

Washington DC-based Stewart and Stewart is a specialist international trade practice. The firm advises clients on trade remedies, WTO disputes, customs, international trade agreements, and government subsidies. ‘Excellent’ managing partner Terry Stewart heads the practice, which acts for clients including US and international companies, farmers and ranchers, governments, trade associations, unions and non-profit organizations. The majority of the firm’s work is on behalf of domestic parties in the US that face unfair competition from exporters. Wesley Caine, William Fennell, Geert De Prest, Alan Dunn and Eric Salonen are key names in the practice.

Clients appreciate the ‘global’ reach of White & Case LLP’s practice, which is established across a number of jurisdictions and collaborates as ‘a single trade group’. The firm is ‘always accessible’, provides ‘great advice’, has a ‘deep bench’ and the quality of its lawyers is ‘consistently high’. International trade group head Walter Spak and David Bond, who divides his time between Miami and Washington DC, are advising new client Hyundai Heavy Industries and its US importer, Hyundai Corp, in an antidumping case before the US Department of Commerce and US International Trade Commission (ITC). The firm is also representing the same client in a companion dumping case in Canada. In April 2012, the firm obtained a negative injury determination from the ITC in an antidumping case involving imports of galvanized steel wire from Mexico, on behalf of Deacero S.A. de C.V. and Deacero USA. Bond has a ‘creative and practical’ approach to finding solutions; he and counsel Jay Campbell have a ‘win-win mindset’ and ‘decades of experience in the international trade field’.

Providing ‘outstanding value for money’, the ‘first-rateWiley Rein LLP is praised by clients as being ‘proactive, realistic and responsive in providing judicious, sober advice while making sure to manage our expectations’. The practice encompasses areas including import relief, unfair trade proceedings, market access, economic sanctions, export controls, FCPA, anti-boycott, trade policy, customs law and compliance, and CFIUS issues. The firm acts for petitioners on the trade remedies side and, in 2011-12, represented the Wind Tower Trade Coalition in petitioning for antidumping and countervailing duty investigations into Chinese imports of utility-scale wind towers as well as anti-dumping investigations into utility-scale wind towers in Vietnam. Chair of the international trade practice Alan Price is ‘knowledgeable, efficient and client focused’, and is viewed by clients as ‘a "go to" lawyer’. Timothy Brightbill, Adam Gordon and Robert DeFrancesco are ‘at the very top of their game’, and John Shane is also recommended. Serena Moe joined the firm in July 2012 from Citigroup and John Reynolds left the firm for Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP in January 2012.

Leading trial lawyers

David Beck, Beck Redden: David Beck is a ‘very, very good lawyer’ who has a reputation for expanding his docket even though he might be considered as heading towards the twilight of his career. Beck recently represented ExxonMobil Corporation in a multimillion-dollar breach of contract suit brought by a former executive, in which instance he secured a complete defense verdict on behalf of his client. Beck - who is ‘often found in the big cases’ purveying a ‘folksy, low-key style’ - is also known for major patent litigation, such as his 2011-13 representation of Becton Dickinson in its defense of a $425m infringement claim made by Retractable Technologies in respect of retractable syringes. In that matter, a very favourable result was achieved: the client’s damages were limited to $5m, and the infringement was ruled not to have been willful. Beck is also ‘typified by a homespun effective approach, and by his courage. He is not afraid to go and try any order-of-magnitude defense case.’

David Boies, Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP: David Boies is a ‘legendary figure’ and a ‘great and revered trial lawyer’. In 2012, Boies was ‘truly, truly wonderful’ before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in Hollingsworth v Perry, a landmark case about the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the 2008 ballot initiative which amended the state constitution to restrict gay marriage in California. After victory at the appeals level, the matter has now been granted certiorari by the Supreme Court. Boies continues to spread himself over a large number of trials. In September 2012 he represented a group of tobacco companies - Philip Morris USA, RJ Reynolds Tobacco and Liggett Group LLC - in their appeal of a $2.5m Tampa jury verdict in relation to the death of smoker Charlotte Douglas before the Supreme Court of Florida. Boies is also currently representing Starr International in its $25bn lawsuit over AIG’s bailout. Although it is rare nowadays to find Boies conducting openings and closings, he nevertheless ‘adds value in everything he touches’. Other clients over the years have included National Football League, Oracle, and famously, Al Gore.

Evan Chesler, Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP: Evan Chesler is the first lawyer to be appointed chairman of the firm, and is known both for trial work and for managing ‘a very knowledgeable and thoughtful department, which provides very sound and constructive legal advice’. Chesler is particularly active in securities litigation; he continues to preside over the firm’s role as national coordinating counsel of JPMorgan Chase’s residential mortgage-backed securities litigation. This representation amounts to 30 distinct lawsuits in respect of purported class actions and assert claims, the alleged violation of federal and state securities laws, and common law fraud and negligent misrepresentation; Chesler is also noted for his work for Washington Mutual on a similar basis. His representation of NCR Corporation in several environmental actions brought under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act is another string to his bow.

Robin Gibbs, Gibbs & Bruns LLP: Robin Gibbs is ‘excellent on all fronts’ and considered an ‘excellent trial lawyer’ for work ranging from energy and securities, to general commercial litigation. In 2012, Gibbs was active alongside the widely respected Grant Harvey in Noel v Trevor Rees Jones, in which instance the judge concurred with a previous Houston jury verdict, and upheld a $196m judgment in favour of the firm’s client D Bobbitt Noel, in respect of damages for fraud and breach of fiduciary duty. In 2012, Gibbs also represented plaintiff ERG Resources in its contractual dispute with diverse oil and gas interests; this ‘superb’ lawyer also defended healthcare services provider DaVita in a large qui tam matter, in which instance the firm achieved a favourable settlement.

John Keker, Keker & Van Nest, L.L.P.: John Keker is the standout figure even in a firm deemed ‘one of the best in the industry’; Keker himself continues to be active in a rich array of matters. In Securities and Exchange Commission v Brian Stoker, Keker represented former Citigroup director Brian Stoker in respect of $1bn collateralized debt obligations, in which a federal jury rejected the government’s case, holding that Stoker had not misled investors. In another high-profile matter, Keker was hired by Frederick Scott Salyer, the former owner of a California-based agribusiness company, to defend him against antitrust, mail fraud and bribery charges brought by the US Attorney’s Office in Sacramento. Keker also continues to represent 30,000 Ecuadorian citizens in its continued litigation with Chevron. In October 2012, the US Supreme Court rejected Chevron’s attempt to block enforcement of a $19bn dollar judgment against it; the case is expected to go to trial in 2013.

Gary Naftalis, Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP: In 2012, ‘wonderful courtroom lawyerGary Naftalis enjoyed another strong year, centered around his representation of former McKinsey’s managing director Rajat Gupta, in which respect Naftalis was active in both a criminal prosecution, and a civil enforcement action brought against Gupta by the SEC. After a trial full of media interest, Gupta was acquitted on two counts of the indictment, although he was convicted on certain other counts. In another highlight, Naftalis successfully won summary judgment for Sirius XM Radio dismissing with prejudice a breach of contract action brought by Howard Stern, in which Stern had been seeking $330m in damages.

Daniel Petrocelli, O’Melveny & Myers LLP: In 2012, Daniel Petrocelli had a whirlwind year which saw him try a slew of different matters back-to-back across various industries. These included his representation of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association against Dick Clark Productions in a battle over the broadcast rights to the Golden Globe Awards Show (Petrocelli is now handling the client’s appeal); a trial on behalf of Botox-maker Allergan, in a case for misappropriation of trade secrets, in which instance this ‘excellent, excellent trial lawyer’ secured a rare “head start" injunction; and the defense of fashion corporate Guess in the Manhattan federal court against claims of trademark infringement by rival designer Gucci totalling $300m. Petrocelli also obtained an extremely favorable settlement on the eve of trial in a high-profile lawsuit by the developers of Call of Duty, a video game franchise. In an extraordinarily busy year, Petrocelli, also secured early dismissals and judgments on behalf of The Walt Disney Company, Warner Bros, and Time Inc.

John Quinn, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP: ‘Absolutely terrific’ John Quinn continues to represent Samsung in its ongoing patent litigation with Apple in the District Court for the Northern District of California. Quinn - whose team also consists of the esteemed Charles Verhoeven - examined the Samsung witnesses in this high-profile matter. The litigation is complex: when the court entered a preliminary injunction against a Samsung Smartphone after Apple claimed the infringement of its ‘unified search’ patent, Quinn argued the appeal in the Federal Circuit, securing a reversal of the injunction. Although the court found for Apple in the San Jose trial, Quinn also entered post-trial motions ensuring that no injunction would be entered against Samsung’s continued sale of its products. Quinn is also involved in an ongoing basis in multibillion-dollar claims brought by the Estate of Lehman against JPMorgan Chase; the case is scheduled for trial in 2014. In 2012, he also represented Activision in No Doubt v Activision, a matter related to the alleged misuse of the No Doubt avatars, in which instance Quinn secured a favourable settlement on the eve of trial.

Dan Webb, Winston & Strawn LLP: Dan Webb is known for being ‘first rate in all respects’ and ‘a very talented lawyer’, and the team he leads - which also includes George Lombardi (‘as good a "bet-the-company" trial lawyer as there is: excellent judgment and great courtroom presence’) - is ‘incredibly responsive and dedicated’. The variety of Webb’s docket impresses: in 2012, Webb scored a notable victory in an arbitration on behalf of Health South, a matter worth $3bn; he also represented William Cellini, in a white-collar federal criminal charge, securing acquittals from the two more serious charges. Webb also teamed up with Thomas Kirsch in defending Dr Arvind Ahuja from conspiracy and tax violation charges, winning acquittal from two out of 11 counts. This ‘remarkable lawyer’ was recently retained by Microsoft in respect of a large pending patent trial.

Theodore Wells, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP: Litigation co-chair Theodore Wells continues to be ‘extremely active’ in high-stakes litigation across a slew of areas, from white-collar criminal defense work to SEC regulatory representations, FCPA investigations, and class action litigation. In 2012, Wells successfully settled claims made by the SEC in connection with client Bank of America’s acquisition of Merrill Lynch in 2008, a settlement which effectively saved the company $30bn; the US District Court for the Southern District of New York approved the settlement. Wells also successfully resolved criminal and civil charges brought by the SEC arising out of the sale and marketing of Vioxx. He is also scheduled to represent Merck in a putative class action worth $10m in relation to the cholesterol-lowering drug Vytorin in 2013. Wells’ client roster speaks for itself: it includes Citigroup, ExxonMobil, Mitsubishi Corporation, and Philip Morris Corporation. One peer enthuses: ‘Superb lawyer. Always has been’.

Philip Beck, Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP: Philip Beck is ‘quick on his feet, and a very aggressive and focused lawyer’. Beck is known for a range of work including IP cases (Haney v CRL Industries; Sportvision v Princeton Video Image); commercial matters (Westinghouse Uranium’s contract litigation, currently awaiting verdict); and bet-the-company mass tort suits on behalf of clients such as Vioxx and Baycol. Beck is also known for ‘an underrated quality: he gives clients good advice as to what is worth litigating and what is not. Beck says what he thinks to the client face-to-face, which makes matters easier for general counsel’. This is also the firm of less-active ‘senior statesman’ name partner Fred Bartlit, who ‘has demonstrated in his career a willingness to try very complicated and dangerous cases’.

Richard Clary, Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP: Richard Clary is a crucial part of a trial lawyers offering, which is ‘one of the best’. Clary’s practice is based around his residential mortgage-backed securities work; Clary currently leads in 40 different suits for flagship client Credit Suisse. This ‘very effective courtroom lawyer’ also handles similar instructions for Citigroup, for which he is national strategy advisor. This work tends to be New York-based; but additional instructions in Texas and on the West Coast makes for ‘an enormous docket around the country’. Clary is an ‘unflappable, solid, and very insightful trial lawyer. He is a prodigious hard-worker’. A peer adds: ‘If you were to go to central casting and cast the cross-examiner who is also a deadly advocate, it would be Clary’.

Jay Cohen, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP: Jay Cohen is held in ‘very high regard’. Cohen is ‘a key player’ on trial teams for major multibillion-dollar matters, and is often victorious in this respect. In 2012, Cohen acted for Citigroup successfully defending a $7.5bn arbitration with ADIA; Cohen also defended Citigroup against Terra Firma’s $8bn claim that it was defrauded by the bank into buying EMI. Cohen is one of the ‘go-to people for any litigation matter that is high-stakes, especially if it is likely to go to trial. He is equally strong on the papers and on his feet—a rare combination’. Other clients include Time Warner Cable and National Music Publishers Association.

Sandra Goldstein, Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP: Sandra Goldstein has a particular strength in special committees-related work. Goldstein, who is a ‘very impressive lawyer’, is currently representing six directors - two former, four current - of Duke Energy Corporation in respect of issues arising out of the company’s $32bn merger with Progress Energy. Goldstein is also representing independent directors of Par Pharmaceuticals in purported shareholder class action in New Jersey and Delaware, a matter relating to the $1.9bn acquisition of Par by TPG Capital.

Marc Kasowitz, Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman LLP: Marc Kasowitz is known for complex litigation in intricate matters such as bank finance leveraged buyouts, and trade secrets misappropriation. Kasowitz is currently representing monoline bond insurance entity ACA Financial Guaranty Corporation in a fraud and unjust enrichment suit against Goldman Sachs; Goldman Sachs’ motion to dismiss was defeated, and the case is now in discovery. Kasowitz also recently represented 2015 Lyondell Noteholders in a $1bn action against Bank of New York Mellon. This ‘superbly talented lawyer’ is also ‘very much at the center’ of the current spate of mortgage-backed securities litigation, particularly on behalf of client MBIA.

Stephen Neal, Cooley LLP: Stephen Neal and colleague Michael Rhodes are ‘highly experienced trial lawyers on major cases, both commercial and patent’; and are known as ‘exceptional strategists, who are very effective in the courtroom’. In 2012, Neal joined forces with respected colleagues Michelle Rhyu and Mary Schenker in representing Onyx Pharmaceuticals in a flagship IP contract dispute; the matter resulted in a significant stake in a promising cancer compound and a large payout for the client. Also recommended at this ‘best in San Diego’ firm are: Steve Strauss (‘great preparation and courtroom presence’); William Schwartz (‘expert in white-collar defense’); and Jonathan Bach (‘invaluable’). Michael Attanasio and patent litigation specialist Thomas Friel also have superb reputations.

Barry Ostrager, Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP: Even in a firm which ‘has deep experience and expertise, and which consistently delivers superior results’, Barry Ostrager’s record stands out. In 2012, Ostrager represented Ingersoll Rand on a major class action suit brought by 130 employees who claimed bonuses under an incentive plan. Ostrager also tried a private arbitration on behalf of Aerotel. Ostrager’s docket in 2013 includes a multi-week Manhattan trial in respect of Dish Network in its fight with ESPN; he is also retained as lead counsel for Bank of America in a put-back case against MBIA, a very significant matter in which claims aggregate to nearly $5bn.

Kathy Patrick, Gibbs & Bruns LLP: Kathy Patrick specialises in financial crisis hangover work, particularly on the bondholder side. In 2012, after a group of investors called Walnut Place removed the proposed $8.5bn settlement between itself and other investors with Bank of America to federal court, Patrick succeeded in obtaining an expedited appeal from the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. The case is set to be heard by the New York Supreme Court in 2013. In 2012, Patrick achieved a similar agreement between 17 institutional investors and Residential Capital and its affiliated debtors, an agreement comprising $8.7bn across 392 residential mortgage backed securities trusts: ‘There is no doubting the material nature of the work Patrick handles’.

William Price, Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP: William Price is an ‘active and very significant’ West Coast lawyer who enjoys a particular niche in high-value work in the IP space. Price recently secured a complete defense verdict for Micron in Rambus Inc v Micron Technology, Inc, a matter worth $12bn; Price also cross-examined several witnesses in Apple v Samsung. All in all, there is a mounting sense that Price is the firm’s go-to trial lawyer.

James Quinn, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP: Having recently stepped down as chair of litigation, James Quinn is now redoubling his focus on trial work on behalf of clients such as Disney, Vivendi and CBS. He is particularly known for his $417m verdict on behalf of ExxonMobil, and his complete defense verdict for Procter & Gamble in an $80m false advertising claim brought by Colgate-Palmolive. In 2012, Quinn was active obtaining a $100m defense verdict for ESPN, eradicated numerous shareholder claims on behalf of Vivendi, and also resolved major disputes on behalf of players in the NFL and NBA.

Robert Van Nest, Keker & Van Nest, L.L.P.: Momentum is with Robert Van Nest after his much talked about representations on behalf of Intel and Google. In Oracle v Google, Van Nest succeeded in winning a reduction of damages from a projected $6bn down to a mere $10m, as part of a landmark ruling in respect of open-source software development which will significantly impact the computer industry. In addition, Van Nest also secured notable victories for client Intel in State of New York v Intel Corp; and served as lead counsel for HTC, a Taiwan-based manufacturer of handheld devices in Apple v HTC – a rare settlement from Apple. Van Nest is now managing further smartphone litigation on behalf of HTC, calibrating arguments across a variety of forums including the Trade Commission and in a slew of European courts. Clients hail him as ‘one of the best trial lawyers’.

Morgan Chu, Irell & Manella LLP: Morgan Chu does a ‘very good job, and is active trying cases’. Chu recently tried Linear Technology v Novellus Systems before the California Court of Appeal, in which instance he achieved a win for his client - including a $5m legal fees award - when an earlier jury verdict was affirmed. Chu is ‘extremely direct with jurors, and is careful; he sticks to the key themes’.

Arturo González, Morrison & Foerster LLP: ‘Excellent’ Arturo González has a reputation for bet-the-company litigation for corporate clients with matter values often stretching into the billions. In addition to securing a significant trademark verdict in the medical products space in the Ninth Circuit, González successfully represented the successor-of-interest to Steven Anthony Vargas; Vargas was killed by a Fresno police officer who claimed he fired to protect himself.

Susan Harriman, Keker & Van Nest, L.L.P.: Susan Harriman’s year was dominated by her comprehensive representation of the defendant in Robin Antonick v Electronic Arts, in which Antonick claims that Madden Football videos are derived from his own programming source code. A jury trial is scheduled for 2013. Other clients of the ‘brilliant’ Harriman are founders of Marvell Technology Group, Music Concourse Community Partnership and Genentech.

Abbe Lowell, Chadbourne & Parke LLP: Abbe Lowell has a superb record as a criminal defense lawyer, and is also well known for handling high-profile matters for clients in the media such as former Presidential candidate John Edwards. In that matter, Lowell was successful in defending Edwards, the jury returning a not-guilty verdict on illegal use of campaign spending, with mistrials declared on all other counts. Other clients include New York Senate majority leader Joseph Bruno, ApothéCure and Hector Martinez.

Randy Mastro, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP: Randy Mastro continues to handle the bitter Lake Agrio litigation on behalf of Chevron. Mastro is aggressively defending the client against enforcement of a $19bn judgment awarded by an Ecuadorian court. Mastro also successfully represented Chevron in securing a DC Circuit win in defense of Patton Boggs’ claims of tortious interference.

William Pratt, Kirkland & Ellis LLP: William Pratt is known for his ‘great courtroom presence’. In one highlight, Pratt is representing Cigna Corporation in Franco et al v Connecticut General Life Insurance Co et al, a putative class action brought by employees alleging that the client’s reimbursements policies were improper; in this instance Pratt - who is also ‘ten out of ten’; ‘phenomenal’ - succeeded in having most of the claims thrown out for lack of standing.

Stephen Susman, Susman Godfrey LLP: Recent highlights for Houston-based litigator Stephen Susman include the fraud arbitration Jefferies & Company v The NASDAQ OMX Group; as well as a contract dispute arbitration on behalf of Glazer’s Wholesale Drug Company. Fellow name partner H Lee Godfrey also has a superb reputation and is arguably ‘the firm’s go-to lawyer for complex litigation’; Godfrey ‘is very active trying cases’.

Beth Wilkinson, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP: Beth Wilkinson is a ‘very real presence on the trial scene’. In 2012, Wilkinson scored her fourth consecutive victory for Pfizer in its Prempro hormone replacement trials. Wilkinson also represented Philip Morris USA in the company’s first “Lights” class action to reach a jury, which resulted in a mistrial and no liability for the client. Wilkinson is also currently representing the NFL in concussion lawsuits brought by thousands of former NFL players alleging that the League is liable for failing to protect the players from the effects of concussions.

Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - antitrust

Index of tables

  1. Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - antitrust
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

    • David Boies - Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP
    • Eric Cramer - Berger & Montague, P.C.
    • Michael Hausfeld - Hausfeld LLP
    • William Isaacson - Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP
    • Megan Jones - Hausfeld LLP
    • Richard Koffman - Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll LLP
    • H Laddie Montague - Berger & Montague, P.C.
    • Brian Ratner - Hausfeld LLP
    • Hollis Salzman - Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi L.L.P.
    • Stephen Susman - Susman Godfrey LLP

Berger & Montague, P.C.’s ‘excellent’, ‘strong’ practice is concentrated on consumer fraud actions in the pharmaceuticals industry and credit cards, although it does have broader scope. The ‘superb’ Eric Cramer and David Sorensen were named as interim co-lead counsel representing a class of direct purchasers of Pfizer’s against Pfizer and generics manufacturer Ranbaxy, in which plaintiffs are seeking to recover overcharge damages incurred as a result of the alleged delayed market entry of a less expensive generic version of Pfizer’s Lipitor prescription drug after alleged collusion between the defendants. As co-lead counsel, the firm negotiated a $20m settlement in In re Metoprolol Succinate Direct Purchaser Antitrust Litigation, on behalf of a class of direct purchasers of the prescription beta blocker Toprol XL. The firm is also currently acting as co-lead counsel to direct purchasers in In re Chocolate Confectionery Antitrust Litigation against defendants Hershey, Mars and Nestlé, in a case alleging conspiracy to fix prices. In December 2012, the court granted plaintiffs’ motion for class certification and denied defendants’ motion to exclude the testimony of plaintiffs’ experts. Co-chairs H Laddie Montague, president of the firm, and Merrill Davidoff are recommended. Senior associate Dan Walker joined the firm in 2012 from Susman Godfrey LLP.

Absolute powerhouseBoies, Schiller & Flexner LLP has a national practice, operating from ten offices including Miami, New York, Washington DC and Oakland, and both prosecutes and defends antitrust cases. The firm negotiated a $10.5m settlement in May 2012 on behalf of a class of direct and indirect purchasers in a price-fixing action against Chinese producers of vitamin C. The firm had been handling this litigation for a number of years and this was the first settlement of a US civil antitrust claim by a Chinese company. Managing partner Donald Flexner is representing DuPont in its claims that Monsanto monopolized the market for genetically modified soybeans and corn. William Isaacson and David Boies are recommended.

Preeminent’ firm Hausfeld LLP is ‘a thought leader on the plaintiffs’ side of the bar’, as well as ‘highly professional’, ‘extremely focused and result-oriented’. The firm is currently involved in 38 class actions, including the ongoing case, In re Air Cargo shipping services antitrust litigation, involving 30 defendants against claims of a worldwide conspiracy. In August 2012, the court approved eight settlements totaling $200m. Elsewhere, the firm is representing the Mayor and City Council of Baltimore and the City of New Britain Firefighters’ and Police Benefit Fund in In re LIBOR-based financial instruments antitrust litigation, alleging that the defendants manipulated the LIBOR. The firm was appointed as interim class counsel and has worked in conjunction with its London office on the case. At present, plaintiffs are awaiting the court’s verdict on the defendants’ motion to dismiss. Name partner Michael Hausfeld is ‘the most creative lawyer on the plaintiffs’ antitrust bar, both in terms of legal theory and settlement strategy’, and is ‘the very best of his class’. ‘Brilliant lawyer’ Brian Ratner is ‘a very smart and business-oriented negotiator’.

The ‘excellentHeins Mills & Olson, PLC has ‘top-level skill across the board with a deep bench’ and is ‘comprised of excellent attorneys, many of whom are highly experienced and all of whom provide superlative client service’. The firm is well known for its extensive resources and for being able to ‘stay the course’ in litigation such as price fixing, monopolization and market allocation cases. Renae Steiner - who is ‘hardworking’, ‘highly professional’ and shows ‘sound judgment’ - has assumed a leadership role in In re NCAA Student-Athlete name & likeness licensing litigation. The case alleges that the NCAA unlawfully prevented former players from receiving compensation related to the use of their images and likenesses, thereby violating federal antitrust laws by conspiring to fix at zero the compensation athletes can receive. At present, Steiner is serving as interim co-counsel and is coordinating discovery in the case and conducting depositions. Elsewhere, the firm continues to serve as co-lead counsel in Fond du lac Bumper Exchange v Jui Li Enterprise Col, Ltd. Department head Vincent Esades displays an ‘exemplary work ethic and advocacy’ and ‘impressive creativity’, and David Woodward has a ‘first-class legal mind’ and is ‘devoted to clients’.

The ‘excellentSusman Godfrey LLP is traditionally headquartered in Houston, but also operates from offices in Dallas, Seattle, Los Angeles and New York. The firm is currently serving as interim co-lead counsel for direct purchaser plaintiffs in antitrust litigation regarding eggs. Terrrell Oxford is leading on this case, which alleges that the defendants conspired to raise and maintain the price of whole eggs and egg products by agreeing to limit production. Among other matters, Bill Carmody, Marc Seltzer and Arun Subramanian are leading the team in representing the class of purchasers of municipal derivatives in connection with allegations of bid rigging in the municipal derivatives industry. In addition to class action work, the firm is handling an increasing number of opt-out cases, including representing opt-outs in a case alleging a ten-year price-fixing conspiracy among manufacturers of LCD panels. James Southwick and Stephen Susman are also recommended.

Philadelphia-based Fine Kaplan & Black is a ‘boutique firm with very good attorneys’. It represents plaintiffs and defendants and its expertise spans class action representation and criminal antitrust litigation, complex discovery management, antitrust economics, and expert preparation. Ongoing work includes serving as co-lead counsel in Standard Iron Works v Arcelor Mittal et al, which alleges conspiracy to artificially restrict the supply of new steel. The firm continues to serve as co-lead counsel in a pending multidistrict price-fixing action for a class of direct purchasers in In re Urethane (Polyether Polygols) antitrust litigation. Standout names at the firm include Allen Black and the ‘very well respected’ Roberta Liebenberg.

Clients appreciate Labaton Sucharow LLP’s ‘deep team of highly qualified lawyers’, who have ‘a wealth of knowledge and do their jobs effectively’. The firm’s work is ‘consistently and uniformly excellent’ and a key highlight for the firm was its recent appointment as co-lead counsel in In re Automotive Parts antitrust litigation, led by Hollis Salzman and Bernard Persky. The plaintiffs allege that the defendants fixed prices for various auto parts sold in the US in separate conspiracies. Salzman is ‘bright’ and ‘knowledgeable’, Persky is ‘a very impressive lawyer who brings his considerable intellect to bear on his clients’ problems’. Jay Himes is ‘an excellent attorney’ and Kellie Lerner is also recommended. (Since the reseach finished, Salzman, Persky and Lerner have left the firm.)

Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP is ‘a big player in antitrust cases on the West Coast’ and is ‘held in high regard’ in the profession. It has a strong focus on intellectual property matters within antitrust and, following the departure of Joseph Saveri to found his own practice, Eric Fastiff was promoted to chair the antitrust and intellectual property practice. Key instructions included serving as co-lead counsel in In re TFT-LCD (flat panel) antitrust litigation, with Richard Heimann leading the team in this litigation, which alleged conspiracy to raise and fix prices of TFT-LCD panels. The litigation against the final defendant was concluded in July 2012. The firm is currently serving as interim lead counsel in In re High-Tech Employee antitrust litigation, in which the plaintiffs allege that the defendants conspired to suppress employees’ pay.

One of the premier plaintiff-side antitrust firms’, Zelle Hofmann Voelbel & Mason LLP is ‘an industry leader in indirect purchaser cases’ and its ‘senior lawyers are leaders of the bar’. In January 2013, the firm expanded its scope by opening an office in London, UK; the office’s antitrust work will concentrate on EU cartels. In the US, ‘nationwide leader of the plaintiff antitrust bar’ Francis Scarpulla led in TFT-LCD (flat panel) antitrust litigation, which settled in July 2012 for $1.082bn. The ‘pragmatic’ Christopher Micheletti, who is a ‘determined and highly skilled litigator’, and Craig Corbitt - who is a ‘gentleman’ in federal court while ‘simultaneously being a zealous and outstanding advocate for his clients’ - are leading representation in Sullivan et al v DeBeers et al. ‘Up-and-comer’ Judith Zahid is ‘a great case organizer and determined advocate’, and Daniel Mason is also recommended. Michael Christian was promoted to the partnership in January 2013.

Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll LLP is a ‘fine firm’ and is involved in both plaintiff and defendant antitrust work. It is serving as plaintiffs’ co-counsel in In re Electronic Books antitrust litigation, in which plaintiffs allege that they paid supra-competitive prices as a result of publishing houses and an e-book publisher conspiring to impose an agency model granting publishers exclusive control over the pricing of e-books. The firm has so far defeated two motions to dismiss in the case. Co-chair Kit Pierson is ‘superb’ in class action and plaintiffs’ antitrust cases, and fellow co-chair Daniel Small is ‘extremely responsive and knowledgeable in the area of antitrust’. Brent Johnson was promoted to the partnership in January 2012.

The ‘excellentKaplan Fox & Kilsheimer is ‘well versed in antitrust and class action issues’. The firm is currently co-lead counsel in In re Air Cargo antitrust litigation, a price-fixing action alleging a global conspiracy by airlines. Sixteen defendants have settled and litigation is ongoing with another 11 defendants. In 2012, the firm was selected as co-lead counsel in proceedings concerning ductile pipe fittings and allegations of price-fixing and monopolization. The ‘stellarRobert Kaplan leads the team and is ‘senior statesman of the plaintiff class action bar’. Gregory Arenson has an ‘extremely good legal mind’ and is ‘diligent in his work, a team player and respected by his adversaries’.

The ‘very ableKohn, Swift & Graf P.C. has experience of representing plaintiffs in matters involving unfair and anticompetitive trade practices, abuses of monopoly power by large corporations, price fixing, group boycotts and market allocation. Douglas Abrahams and Joseph Kohn are currently leading in In re Fasteners antitrust litigation, in which the firm is co-lead counsel for a proposed class of direct purchasers alleging a conspiracy to fix prices and allocate customers and markets in the US and worldwide. Although a settlement was reached with one defendant in 2010, litigation continues against the remaining defendants and the case is currently at the discovery stage.

Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP represents plaintiffs and defendants in antitrust cases. Stephen Neuwirth, who chairs the national antirust and competition law practice, is leading the team in In re Rail Freight Fuel Surcharge, in which the firm has been appointed co-lead counsel in a case alleging that four US railroads conspired to use fuel surcharges as a pretext to impose an across-the-board price increase and is currently at the discovery stage. The firm is also active in In re Processed Egg Products antitrust litigation, an alleged supply reduction and price-fixing scheme. John Neukom joined the San Francisco office from Mayer Brown in May 2012.

Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - labor and employment

Index of tables

  1. Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - labor and employment
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

    • David Borgen - Goldstein, Borgen, Dardarian & Ho
    • Eve Cervantez - Altshuler Berzon
    • James Finberg - Altshuler Berzon
    • Adam Klein - Outten & Golden LLP
    • David Lowe - Rudy, Exelrod, Zieff & Lowe, LLP
    • Michael Rubin - Altshuler Berzon

Altshuler Berzon’s ‘excellent’ team numbers 26 attorneys, including 14 partners, and is recognized as an industry leader. The San Francisco-based firm’s attorneys have appeared in federal and state courts in California and across the country as well as appearing before the National Labor Relations Board. The firm has increased its work in class actions and widened its client base, which traditionally includes labor federations, international and local labor unions, workers, consumers, and public interest organizations. Michael Rubin and Peder Thoreen recently acted in two parallel cases against DR Horton and 24 Hour Fitness and were successful in establishing that workers cannot be forced to give up their right to pursue work-based claims on a class action or joint action basis. Michael Rubin appeared before the California Supreme Court in Brinker Restaurant Corp, et al v Superior Court on behalf of Brinker restaurant workers in a meal and rest case. The issue in the case concerned whether an employer is only required to provide employees with a meal break or whether an employer has an obligation to ensure employees take meal breaks. James Finberg, Eve Cervantez and associate Jennifer Sung reached a $3.55m settlement on behalf of plaintiffs in Hines v KFC, a wage-and-hour class action. The plaintiffs alleged that KFC failed to provide its employees proper consideration for missed meal and rest break and work performed off the clock. The firm is rated as a ‘great firm’ by co-counsel.

The ‘fantastic’ Kelly Dermody leads Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP’s team across offices in San Francisco and New York. The firm advises on gender and race claims, wage-and-hour disputes, overtime claims, and Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) cases on behalf of employees and retirees for pension plan abuses, and whistleblower cases. Dermody and Daniel Hutchinson are leading in Ellis v Costco Wholesale Corp, in which the firm is representing female workers in alleging that Costco discriminates against women in promotion to management positions. The court granted the plaintiffs’ motion for class certification in September 2012 and two classes were certified: one for injunctive relief and the other for monetary relief. Elsewhere, the firm is representing plaintiffs in a gender discrimination class in Chen-Oster v Goldman Sachs. Dermody is co-lead counsel in the case, which is currently at the discovery stage and in which plaintiffs allege that female professionals were paid less than male colleagues and that Goldman Sachs discriminates against female employees in terms of promotional and business opportunities. New York-based Rachel Geman is noted for her expertise in employee whistleblowing claims.

Outten & Golden LLP is the ‘premier plaintiffs’ employment firm in New York and at the very top of the premier firms nationally’. The firm has ‘smart, tenacious’ and ‘effective lawyers’ and is primarily based in New York, with additional offices in Connecticut, Illinois and California. The firm acts for plaintiffs, including executives and partners, from all industries, but has specialist expertise in the media and production industry and represents clients in matters involving former or current employers and potential future employers. Founding and managing partner Wayne Outten, co-chair of the executives and professionals practice group, is ‘considered to be one of the deans of the plaintiffs’ employment bar nationally’. Adam Klein, chair of the firm’s class action practice group, is ‘one of the best and most knowledgeable employment class litigators in the country’ and is currently serving as co-lead counsel in Chen-Oster v Goldman Sachs. The firm is also representing interns against Hearst and Fox for unpaid internships. The ‘excellent’ Justin Swartz is currently representing workers in overtime lawsuits against employers including CVS, Boston Market, Bovis, Family Dollar, TD Ameritrade, Starbucks and JPMorgan Chase. Wendi Lazar, co-chair of the executives and professionals practice group, is recommended.

Goldstein, Borgen, Dardarian & Ho is the new name of the former Goldstein, Demchak, Baller, Borgen & Dardarian following the retirement of Teresa Demchak and Morris Baller and Roberta Steele adopting of counsel status. The firm is active in employment discrimination cases and wage-and-hour litigation, including issues over overtime pay, failure by employers to provide meal and rest breaks, illegal tip pools and Californian law and the vacation policy. The firm is acting alongside two other firms in Vasich v City of Chicago, a class action lawsuit against the City of Chicago challenging the physical abilities test that has a lower pass rate for female firefighters than males. The claim alleges that the test discriminates against women and is unlawful as it is not related to job performance. Laura Ho focuses her practice in California and is active on federal wage-and-hour class and collective actions and has represented non-profit organizations as amici curiae in a number of cases affecting Californian employees in the California Court of Appeal, the Supreme Court of California and the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

San Francisco-based Rudy, Exelrod, Zieff & Lowe, LLP is an ‘excellent’ firm. The firm represents employees nationwide and globally, including cross-border employees and military personnel deployed overseas. The firm advises on matters such as retaliation, sexual harassment, race discrimination, age discrimination, violation of family or medical leave laws, and wrongful termination in violation of public policy. It also negotiates and litigates claims relating to employee stock options, unpaid incentive compensation, breach of contract and violation of the WARN Act. David Lowe is ‘terrific’ and Mark Rudy is recommended for his mediation skills.

Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - pharmaceuticals and medical devices

Index of tables

  1. Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - pharmaceuticals and medical devices
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Burg Simpson Eldredge Hersh & Jardine, P.C. is valued by clients for providing the ‘highest level of service’ of ‘law firms representing consumers in the US’. Department head and founding partner Michael Burg is ‘a superb practitioner’ and leads a team of 36 attorneys across offices in Colorado, Wyoming, Arizona and Ohio. The firm was instrumental in the discovery phase of the Yaz/Yasmin birth control pill litigation and Michael Burg served as co-lead counsel in the case, with Seth Katz and Janet Abaray appointed heads of discovery and science, respectively. In 2012, the defendant, Bayer, entered into settlement negotiations with thousands of plaintiffs in relation to blood clot claims. Seth Katz was recently appointed as co-lead counsel in the multi-district litigation, In re: Pradaxa (Dabigatan Etexilate) products liability litigation. Janet Abaray served on the plaintiff steering committee in In re Heparin products litigation, which concluded in 2012. Michael Burg, Peter Burg, managing partner Kerry Jardine and Seth Katz have a ‘high level of experience and competence’. Associate Stephen Burg is also recommended.

The ‘brilliantHerman, Herman & Katz LLCranks with a small cadre of the best class and multi-district litigation plaintiffs’ litigators in the United States’, and is not only valued for its legal ability but also its ‘integrity and ethics’. The firm is recognized by fellow counsel as a ‘"go-to" firm for cases litigated in New Orleans’. The firm handles cases including pharmaceuticals product liability, claims involving failure to diagnose spinal injury resulting in quadriplegia, defective medical products, and medical liability cases. The firm is part of the executive committee in the Vioxx multi-district litigation (MDL) against Merck & Co for alleged defects, and is also heading the negotiating team in the ‘Group 10’ cases against several defendants for alleged defects in Rezulin. Soren Gisleson is on the leadership committee in In re Budeprion XL marketing & sales practices litigation, a consumer protection claim against Teva Pharmaceuticals USA for allaged defects with the Budeprion product. Senior partner Russ Herman is recognized for his ‘strength in trial and appellate advocacy’, and Leonard Davis’ ‘strength is in managerial skills as liaison counsel for plaintiffs’ steering committees in multi-district litigation’.

The ‘top-notch’ practice at Pensacola-based Levin Papantonio Thomas Mitchell Rafferty & Proctor, P.A. has represented clients in litigation involving Actos, Fosamax, NuvaRing and transvaginal mesh products. This ‘excellent’ firm has a long history of handling defective orthopedic device cases and of counsel Ben Gordon is serving as co-chair of plaintiffs’ science and expert committee in In re: DePuy hip implant litigation. Troy Rafferty ‘performed extraordinarily well’ on the committee for Vioxx and is serving as co-lead counsel in In re Gadolinium-Based Contrast Agent litigation, currently pending in the US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. ‘Excellent trial lawyer’ Mike Papantonio is ‘a great leader for litigation’.

The Lanier Law Firm has four offices across Texas, California and New York. Recent instructions include litigation regarding DePuy hip replacements, Yaz/Yasmin, Chantix, Paxil and Levaquin. ‘Excellent’ founding partner W Mark Lanier, has represented numerous clients in the Vioxx MDL. Richard Meadow, managing attorney of the firm’s New York office and chair of the pharmaceutical litigation division, is a ‘renowned’ trial attorney and has served on the plaintiffs’ steering committee of several national litigation cases. Meadow is currently serving as co-litigation counsel for the Levaquin litigation in New Jersey.

Philadelphia-based Levin, Fishbein, Sedran & Berman is ‘out in front’ and has experience in coordinating parallel state and federal cases for individuals, class actions and multi-district litigation. The firm is currently representing plaintiffs in GranuFlo, Tyenol and transvaginal mesh litigation. Arnold Levin enjoys a ‘significant reputation’ for his work for plaintiffs in diet pills litigation and the ‘excellent’ Michael Fishbein is serving as lead counsel and liaison counsel in the diet drug (fen-phen) class action with 600,000 members nationwide. Arnold Levin is ‘heavily involved’ in Vioxx litigation and was appointed to plaintiffs’ negotiating counsel committee. Frederick Longer is also recommended.

Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein, LLP is commended for its ‘good work’ and represents purchasers of drugs in alleged economic loss claims and patients who have taken drug products and suffered adverse effects. The firm is currently active on litigation concerning DePuy ASR artificial hip implants; Wendy Fleishman has been appointed to the plaintiffs’ steering committee in litigation in the federal court and Robert Nelson is serving on the plaintiffs’ steering committee in coordinated proceedings in California state court. The firm is also active in cases including Yaz/Yasmin litigation, Medtronic Infuse bone graft litigation and Actos bladder cancer treatment litigation. The firm is representing plaintiffs in proceedings against the New England Compounding Center for an alleged nationwide fungal meningitis outbreak, a case that was recently referred back to the Massachusetts state court by a federal judge. Department head Elizabeth Cabraser, who is based in San Francisco, has a ‘national reputation’ and the team works from offices in San Francisco, Nashville and New York. Donald Arbitblit is ‘very strong’ on science issues and is known for heading science committees in litigation. Lexi Hazam and Paulina do Amaral are also recommended.

The ‘very goodSeeger Weiss LLP has offices in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Co-founder Christopher Seeger is experienced in representing large classes of plaintiffs and individuals and was appointed to the plaintiffs’ steering committee in the Actos MDL. Seeger is also leading the firm in its position as co-lead counsel in a concussion lawsuit against the National Football League (NFL), filed by eleven former professional players alleging that the NFL failed to take the necessary precautions to protect players from long-term brain injuries and highlights the use of Toradol, which, it is alleged, can mask symptoms of serious head injury while inducing dangerous cerebral bleeding. David Buchanan is ‘excellent’ on discovery and the preservation of electronic information.

Ashcraft & Gerel LLP has seven offices across Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia. Michelle Parfitt, head of the mass tort practice, has represented individuals in various state and federal courts against pharmaceuticals and medical devices manufacturers and continues to act on the plaintiffs’ steering committee, science, discovery and expert committees in the gadolinium-based contrast agent litigation. James Green is recommended.

Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, P.C. is based in Montgomery, Alabama, and advises on defective drugs, unsafe medications, malpractice, surgically implanted medical devices, retail or prescribed devices, prescription and over-the-counter drugs, and surgically or clinically administered drugs. Of counsel Ted Meadows is currently handling hormone replacement therapy (HRT) cases and is serving on the plaintiffs’ steering committee in the Prempro MDL. The firm recently acted on behalf of a plaintiff awarded $5.1m in an HRT case alleging a link between hormone replacement drugs and breast cancer in a case before a federal jury in Utah, in conjunction with James Esparza Law Firm. In April 2012, P Leigh O’Dell was appointed as a member of the plaintiffs’ steering committee for four cases in the consolidated transvaginal mesh MDL. Andy Birchfield heads the mass tort department and is recommended.

Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - securities

Index of tables

  1. Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - securities
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossmann LLP is a ‘leader in the field’ and provides ‘outstanding’ service and responsiveness. Salvatore Graziano and managing partner and department head Max Berger are ‘particularly effective in the prosecution and handling of cases’. Berger, Steven Singer, Hannah Ross and Mark Lebovitch served as co-lead counsel in In re Bank of America Corp Securities, Derivatives and Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). This long-running case settled in the weeks prior to trial when Bank of America agreed to pay $2.425bn and to implement corporate governance reforms to resolve the claims. Elsewhere, Lebovitch served as co-lead counsel in representing Delphi’s public shareholders in litigation concerning the conduct of the Delphi Financial Group’s board of directors, senior officers and Delphi’s founder and controlling shareholder in their efforts to sell the company to Tokio Marine Holdings. A $49m settlement was reached, which amounted to 90% of the recoverable class damages sought. The firm is currently acting in litigation alleging that Facebook and its underwriters misrepresented the challenges facing Facebook prior to its IPO. John Rizio-Hamilton was promoted to the partnership at the end of 2012. Singer is ‘excellent’ and Gerald Silk is also recommended.

Wilmington-based Grant & Eisenhofer P.A. is ‘very good’ and has a national reach and regularly serves as lead counsel in national class actions on behalf of public and private investors. The firm is currently advising the California State Teachers Retirement System in a case that is being tried in Paris. The firm has taken on the role of overseeing the case and is currently managing the litigation and conferring with local counsel. Elsewhere, the firm is involved with the Citigroup opt-out cases and brought individual consolidated actions rather than a class action in order to allow additional claims otherwise prevented under class action law, including claims under UK law. The equity securities action has settled, pending approval, and the bond action is close to settlement. In addition to its work in the securities area, the firm is also active in corporate governance, whistleblower, false claims, antitrust and bankruptcy litigation. Founding partners, the ‘excellent’ Stuart Grant and Jay Eisenhofer, are recommended.

Class actLabaton Sucharow LLP has ‘a highly dedicated team of lawyers with a considerable understanding of the market and the instruments involved’. The firm is ‘excellent is all respects’ and is praised for being ‘innovative, diligent, hardworking and very responsive’. The firm has recently advised the shareholders on In re El Paso Corporation Shareholder Litigation, with plaintiffs alleging that the board breached its fiduciary duties to El Paso’s shareholders, following Kinder Morgan’s acquisition of the outstanding shares in El Paso. The plaintiffs have also brought claims against Kinder Morgan, alleging aiding and abetting. The firm, which is co-lead counsel in this matter through Ira Schochet and Christine Azar, reached an agreement in principle to settle and release all claims asserted in the action for $110m in July 2012. Thomas Dubbs, Martis Alex and Louis Gottlieb advised the Ohio Public Employees Retirement System, State Teachers Retirement System of Ohio and Ohio Police & Fire Pension Fund in securing a $725m settlement with AIG concerning allegations of bid rigging and accounting fraud. The firm also secured a $275m settlement on behalf of The Michigan Retirement Systems in a case alleging that investment bank, Bear Stearns, made misleading statements about its financial health. Practice chair Lawrence Sucharow, is an ‘excellent securities lawyer’, and Jonathan Plasse. Joel Bernstein and David Goldsmith are also recommended. Kellie Lerner and Stephen Tountas were promoted to the partnership in January 2012. (Since the research finished, Lerner has left the firm.)

Clients consider plaintiffs’ firm Bernstein Liebhard LLP to be ‘among the best we have encountered’. The firm has recently advised the public shareholders of Great Wolf Resorts, Inc on In re Great Wolf Resort, Inc. Shareholders Litigation. The clients sought equitable relief from both Great Wolf’s board of directors and Apollo Global Management for an alleged breach of fiduciary duty by the directors and Apollo’s aiding and abetting in this alleged breach. The firm secured a settlement on behalf of the plaintiffs. Elsewhere, the firm is currently representing the plaintiffs in an individual securities action, Public Employees Retirement Association of New Mexico v Clearland Securities f/k/a Wachovia Global Securities Lending. Plaintiffs allege that the defendant breached its contractual and fiduciary duties and failed to conduct due diligence into two structured investment vehicles that later became insolvent and is seeking recovery of $100m. Stephanie Beige and Michael Bigin were promoted to the partnership in January 2013 and senior associate Laurence Hasson joined the firm in June 2012 from Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossmann LLP. Rebecca Katz joined Motley Rice LLC in 2012.

The ‘extremely professionalKaplan Fox & Kilsheimer provides ‘excellent’ overall service, is highly regarded across the profession and is viewed as a ‘capable adversary’ by opposition counsel. The firm is co-lead counsel in the Federal National Mortgage Association (‘Fannie Mae’) litigation, where it is representing the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System; the case is currently at the discovery stage. New York-based Joel Strauss is leading advice to the Los Angeles City Employees’ Retirement System in the securities class action against Gentiva Health Services and other related defendants in connection with Gentiva’s disclosure that it had materially misrepresented its financial results. Jeffrey Campisi and Melinda Campbell were promoted to the partnership at the end of 2011. Robert Kaplan and Frederic Fox are also recommended along with Laurence King, who is managing partner of the firm’s San Francisco and Los Angeles offices.

Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check, LLP’s ‘excellent’, ‘respected’ practice is currently acing as court-appointed lead or co-lead counsel in federal courts across the US. For example, it was appointed as co-lead counsel in In re Bank of America Corp. Securities Litigation, a case arising from the merger between Bank of America and Merrill Lynch. The parties in this consolidated class action reached an agreement to settle for $2.425bn with Bank of America agreeing to institute certain corporate governance policies. At present, the parties are seeking the preliminary approval of the court. Darren Check is recommended.

Traditional securities firm Milberg LLP has broadened its practice to serve a number of practice areas, but remains strong in the securities field. The firm has offices in New York, Los Angeles and Detroit. The firm served as co-lead counsel and represented investors in Washington Mutual in South Ferry #2 v Killinger, et. al. Following almost seven years of litigation, the court approved a $41.5m settlement of the case in June 2012. Recent work includes its involvement in the Oppenheimer Fund cases, in which plaintiffs have filed a motion for class certification and discovery is underway. The firm also acted in In re Goodrich Shareholders Litigation, challenging the merger of Goodrich with United Technologies; a settlement has been negotiated and is currently awaiting court approval. Lori Feldman, Matthew Gluck, Sanford Dumain, Robert Wallner and Ariana Tadler are recommended.

The ‘aggressiveRobbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP has offices in San Diego, New York, Boca Raton, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Manhattan, Washington DC, Atlanta and Chicago. Attorneys at the firm are currently serving as lead or named counsel in securities class action and institutional investment cases nationwide. In December 2012, the firm successfully defeated the defendants’ motion to dismiss in Smilovits v First Solar, Inc, and recently also commenced a class action on behalf of purchasers of Zillow, Inc common stock during the period of February to November 2012. San Diego-based Michael Dowd is ‘very good’ and a ‘notable’ name.

Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - toxic tort

Index of tables

  1. Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation - toxic tort
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

    • Russell Budd - Baron & Budd PC
    • Robert Gordon - Weitz & Luxenberg PC
    • Perry Weitz - Weitz & Luxenberg PC

Baron & Budd PC’s ‘excellent’ team comprises 40 attorneys including nine partners and represents individuals and entities nationally. The team provides ‘outstanding’ levels of service throughout the litigation cycle. Having originally developed its reputation specializing in asbestos cases, the firm now has a diversified practice in toxic tort including water contamination, oil spill and Chinese drywall cases. The firm remains strong in litigating asbestos-related mesothelioma cases and trial attorney John Langdoc recently achieved a $48m verdict on behalf of a mesothelioma patient and his family, including $18m in punitive damages. Scott Summy, who heads the water contamination practice group, recently served as lead counsel in litigation concerning the contamination of groundwater with atrazine. In May 2012, preliminary approval was granted for a proposed settlement of $105m granted to public water providers found to have atrazine in their source water. Russell Budd and Steve Baron are key figures in the practice.

Napoli Bern Ripka, LLP is noted for ‘tackling difficult cases’ and is ‘respected’ by co-counsel. It has increased its geographical profile with the opening of new offices in Delaware and Maryland and an additional office in Orange County in 2012, and now has a total of 11 offices nationally. All offices are able to handle asbestos-related mesothelioma claims and the New York, Colorado and Florida offices also handle environmental toxic tort claims. The ‘excellent’ Paul Napoli and Marc Bern achieved a $10m oil spill settlement against several oil companies for personal injury and property damage on behalf of over 300 Brooklyn residents. Marc Bern was appointed to the plaintiffs’ executive committee to oversee a $7m class action settlement for MTBE contamination, which was approved by the court in June 2012. The firm remains active on ‘fracking’ cases, where it is currently handling a number of cases for individuals. Ethan Horn, who joined the firm in 2012, acts almost exclusively in asbestos claims and heads the Orange County office.

New York-headquartered Weitz & Luxenberg PC represents victims and families in states including New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The firm has a strong reputation in mesothelioma cases and represents client in environmental litigation including ‘fracking’, lead or mercury poisoning, arsenic contaminated tap water, exposure to benzene, landfill odors, and property damage caused by toxins. The firm’s chief trial lawyer, the ‘superb’ Robert Gordon, represented individuals and businesses affected as a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Of counsel Robin Greenwald heads the environmental toxic tort litigation group and has represented clients in MTBE groundwater contamination cases. Founding partners Arthur Luxenberg and Perry Weitz are key names and Weitz is well known for his expertise in settlement negotiations.

Motley Rice LLC has offices in South Carolina, Rhode Island, Louisiana, Connecticut, New York, West Virginia, Washington DC and California. The firm has a ‘renowned’ practice in asbestos-related mesothelioma claims and represents victims across the US and Canada. The firm’s natural resources damages practice represents state agencies in disaster cases following environmental contamination after the release of oil and other hazardous materials. The 22-attorney environmental team litigates property damage and personal injury claims and the firm continues to be active in childhood lead poisoning cases. Fidelma Fitzpatrick is currently litigating nuclear contamination cases on behalf of Pennsylvania and Tennessee residents who allege that local nuclear facilities exposed them to hazardous levels of toxic or radioactive material in the surrounding air, soil and water. Founding partner, Ronald Motley is an ‘excellent’, experienced trial lawyer in asbestos and tobacco cases.

Richardson, Patrick, Westbrook & Brickman, LLC has continued to focus its practice on groundwater contamination cases involving trichloroethylene (TCE) and benzene vapors. Additionally, in 2012, Jerry Evans and of counsel Gordon Rhea negotiated a settlement on behalf of over 70 former workers exposed to toxic dust generated during the oil refinery process at the Hovensa Oil Refinery in St Croix, US Virgin Islands. Michael Brickman and J David Butler are recommended for asbestos-related claims.

Product liability and mass tort defense: aerospace/aviation

Index of tables

  1. Product liability and mass tort defense: aerospace/aviation
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Condon & Forsyth LLP is home to a ‘significant’ and senior team of ‘terrific’ lawyers. It excels in insurance-based cases and advising aircraft manufacturers and carriers in investigations conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). David Harrington has significant experience representing parties during NTSB investigations and is also lead counsel for Colgan Air in the litigation arising from the 2009 Bombardier Q400 accident outside Buffalo, NY. The team’s excellent reputation is partly founded on its representation of American Airlines in litigation following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Desmond Barry specializes in multi-district litigation and has acted for airlines across the US in claims arising from aviation accidents. Christopher Christensen also handles large-scale air accidents for helicopter manufacturers, as well as general aviation disputes and commercial litigation. Clients ‘think highly’ of Frank Silane in the Los Angeles office, whose long track record in personal injury and wrongful death cases makes him a reliable choice for mass tort defense. The firm often acts in cases involving the defense sector, where Marshall Turner advises manufacturers, suppliers and distributors of military products. Diana Gurfel Shapiro and Michael Holland are also recommended.

Morrison & Foerster LLP’s ‘excellent’, ‘highly competent’ and ‘fully responsive’ team produces ‘excellent results’ for clients including Cessna Aircraft, Global Aerospace and Alaska Airlines. The experienced San Diego-based attorneys Don Rushing and James Huston jointly head the group, which is praised for ‘superior analytical skills’ and ‘strong advocacy’. Honeywell International instructed the team to defend it in litigation following an eight-fatality helicopter crash allegedly caused by engine failure. Rushing and of counsel William Janicki acted as national coordinating and trial counsel for Cessna in personal injury and wrongful death cases involving its Cessna Caravan 208 series aircraft. The team of ‘superb lawyers’ demonstrates ‘excellent client-management skills’ and regularly ‘exceeds expectations to obtain top-drawer results’. Linda Lane recently acted for Columbia Helicopters in litigation following the crash of a Sikorsky S-61 helicopter in the Shasta-Trinity National Forest. William O’Connor acted for Honeywell International (and its insurer) during the investigation into the high-profile crash of Air France Flight 447, in which 228 passengers and crew members died. Mark Zebrowski is also recommended.

Noted for its ‘excellent work’ in the field, Perkins Coie LLP is a ‘great advantage’ for companies in the aviation and aerospace sectors and has a long history of acting as product liability counsel in global litigation. ‘Dean of the bar’ John Dillow heads the practice, which is famous for its longstanding representation of Boeing. Other clients include Honeywell and Turbomeca. With the assistance of Mary Gaston and Thomas McLaughlin, Dillow has acted in major lawsuits concerning personal injury and fatalities resulting from terrorist attacks. Bruce Campbell defended a client in lawsuits stemming from an aircraft accident in Europe, helping to obtain a forum non conveniens motion before a district court and later at appellate level. In addition to general aviation disputes, the team has demonstrable experience in satellite-related litigation. Steve Koh recently represented a client and its insurers in arbitration concerning the alleged willful misconduct, gross negligence and breach of contract concerning loss of a satellite, as part of which it also handled issues pertaining to International Traffic in Arms Regulations rules. Steve Koh is a ‘standout’ advisor, and V Woolston, Phoenix-based Anthony Marks and Chicago-based Bates Larson are also recommended. All lawyers are based in the Seattle head office, except where noted otherwise.

Cozen O’Connor is best known for its representation of insurers in major aviation accidents, including wrongful death claims arising from mid-air collisions, terrorist attacks and military incidents. However, its competence extends to defending clients in other disputes, such as those concerning the tarmac delay rules. Miami-based Richard Dunn, who frequently defends airlines and the producers of aircraft components, is highly respected across the market. Philadelphia-based Ann Thornton Field is ‘very much the real deal’, and advises clients ranging from aircraft owners to components manufacturers. Vice-chairman Patrick O’Connor in West Conshohocken is a proven trial lawyer with broad courtroom experience and expertise in aviation-related contractual litigation. Other areas of specialization include disputes arising from product recalls and property damage claims concerning aircraft and aviation facilities. Philadelphia-based Catherine Slavin is also recommended, as are New York-based James Campise and Christopher Raleigh.

Hogan Lovells LLP has a distinct focus on product integrity advice. The team has seen an increase in instructions on matters based outside the US, including litigation arising from foreign accidents. Houston-based Thad Dameris acts as national counsel for major aircraft manufacturers including Airbus. He recently represented it in litigation stemming from the crash of an A310 freight aircraft, operated by a Central American cargo company. Dameris also represented the same client in litigation following the crash of Air France Flight 447. Seasoned litigator Bruce Oakley is notably experienced in questioning expert witnesses, and Christopher Odell is particularly strong in cases involving third parties and co-defendants. The pair recently defended Airbus against personal injury claims brought by non-US passengers, allegedly caused by turbulence. Trevor Jefferies is vastly experienced in electronic discovery processes, whereas Washington DC-based David Weiner focuses on legal briefing. The team’s experience also extends to runway-overrun incidents. Other clients include Vector Aerospace, Eurocopter and Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty.

Holland & Knight LLP’s ‘very good’ team has encountered an uptick in domestic litigation and has an increased focus on mass torts. It is well regarded for its ‘good-value’ advice on the regulation of passenger liability cases and continues to represent clients in high-value mediations and settlements. Answers and legal statements are ‘provided in a short time’, and cases are handled sensitively. Air France recently instructed a team including Christopher Kelly and the ‘excellent’ Alan Reitzfeld to act as lead counsel in litigation concerning the crash of Air France Flight 447. Turkish Airlines instructed the practice, again as lead counsel, to defend it against personal injury complaints connected with the crash of Turkish Flight 1951 in Amsterdam. Miami-based Lyndall Lambert recently defended Aerovias de Integracion Regional in several personal injury and wrongful death cases arising from the crash of a Boeing 737 at San Andres airport in Colombia. Randal Craft (New York) and Gary Halbert (Washington) are acting for UPS as lead counsel in an ongoing investigation into the crash of UPS Flight 6 in Dubai. Judith Nemsick frequently handles air crash investigations and also recently acted for an airline in litigation arising from the mental breakdown of a pilot.

Nixon Peabody LLP represents airlines, manufacturers and their insurers in negligence claims and disputes concerning aircraft accidents and fatalities. Based in San Francisco, Eric Strain and practice head Stephen Johnson recently defended American Eurocopter Corp in $25.5m insurance recovery litigation following a helicopter crash. The duo also defended an aircraft manufacturer and distributor against a wrongful death and personal injury claim. Boston-based Christopher Allen achieved a defense verdict for Alaska Airlines before the Eastern District of Massachusetts, after a passenger brought a negligence claim concerning an injury to her arm. The team also recently acted for EADS to obtain the complete dismissal of multiple death air crash litigation in Massachusetts. Brian Dalrymple and Los Angeles-based William Robinson have vast experience in handling fatal aircraft accident litigation.

Reed Smith LLP’s ‘terrific’ team of 12 handles multi-district litigation concerning catastrophic aviation accidents. It often acts as preferred and national counsel to Cirrus Design, and assisted it in overturning a plaintiff verdict concerning the alleged duty of an aircraft manufacturer to provide training to pilots. New York-based practice head Patrick Bradley is a ‘serious worker’ who achieved ‘spectacular success’ in securing a defense verdict in Lidle v Cirrus, a wrongful death case following an airplane crash in Manhattan. Other notable work for the same client saw the team defend it in fatal crash litigation and wrongful death claims. KS Bearings sought representation to defend against claims for wrongful death and survival damages, following the alleged failure of an engine bearing. Elsewhere, Oliver Beiersdorf acted as defense counsel to Continental Airlines before the US District Court for the Western District of New York in litigation concerning a 50-fatality airplane crash. Washington DC-based counsel Courtney Bateman recently acted for Piper Aircraft in litigation arising from the crash of a 2006 Piper PA-46 aircraft, which resulted in three fatalities.

Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP’s Denny Shupe is ‘very good’ for complex litigation involving the lease or purchase of aircraft, fatal accidents and, particularly, disputes relating to avionics. Philadelphia-based Ralph Wellington is an experienced appellate lawyer and has represented aviation insurance companies, corporate aircraft owners and engine manufacturers in a range of disputes. Jerry Tanenbaum and aviation co-chair Jonathan Stern advised Independence Air in a negligence claim that alleged defective design of an airplane’s staircase. The firm has also acted for clients such as Motorola, Leach International and Freescale Semiconductor.

Praised for its ‘excellent work’, Chicago-based Adler Murphy & McQuillen represents air carriers, component manufacturers and helicopter operators in litigation ranging from wrongful death cases to personal injury claims. In addition to corporates, the firm also advises individuals including US and non-domestic aircraft owners. Name partner John Adler is a highly experienced advocate with experience in both military and commercial aviation, and has acted in a number of complex uninsured cases, collisions and major crashes. James Murphy is a class action specialist with arbitration experience, and Michael McQuillen is recommended for his track record of representing airlines and aviation insurers in cases at trial and appellate levels. Clients of the team include United Airlines and Great Lakes Airlines.

Bryan Cave LLP is a well-established player in aviation product defense. It represents clients including avionics and commercial aircraft manufacturers and fixed base operators. Notable mandates have seen the team defend international and US airlines in personal injury and wrongful death litigation arising from aviation accidents including major disasters. It has been longstanding counsel on all aerospace and aviation cases in the McDonnell Douglas portfolio (part of Boeing), including national counsel instructions. The team has also represented clients in litigation stemming from the failed deployment of satellites and failed rocket launches. Jeffrey Morof in Chicago and of counsel Douglas Winter in Washington DC are the key contacts.

Jones Day’s small team is well regarded for its knowledge of NTSB regulations and disputes concerning component parts manufacturing. It represents clients ranging from technology providers to passenger and cargo airlines in product liability litigation in the US and internationally. Pittsburgh-based John Goetz was instructed to defend Pilatus Aircraft and Pilatus Business Aircraft in several lawsuits in Los Angeles and Montana, concerning wrongful death claims arising from the crash of a Pilatus PC-12 aircraft in March 2009. The team also successfully assisted Doncasters Group in vacating a $28m damages award against it by the Missouri Court of Appeals, following a fatal aviation incident. Cleveland-based Richard Bedell assisted TECT Aerospace during an investigation carried out by the Department of Justice (DoJ) into the properties and performance of wing spars on the T-6 Texan aircraft, which is used to train US Air Force and Navy pilots. Other mandates included acting for a motion and control company in litigation concerning aircraft components, and advising a parts distributor on its responding to a Notice of Proposed Civil Penalty from the Federal Aviation Administration. Kevin Boyce andDavid Monde are other names to note.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP provides an ‘excellent service’ in product liability litigation and is noted for its ‘very good team of fast learners’. In particular, the group is regularly instructed to take over cases at appellate level due to its reputation for ‘infallible’ written work and legal analysis of complex legal issues. It continues to benefit from a fruitful relationship with Boeing, which it advised in litigation arising from the crash of Turkish Airlines Flight 1951 in The Netherlands. The same client instructed the team to defend it in a lawsuit stemming from the crash of Dana Airlines Flight 992 in Nigeria. Other clients include Delta Air Lines, EVA Airways and Honeywell International. Equally strong for defense representation in commercial and products litigation, the practice is commended for ‘valuing the opinions of clients’ lead insurers’ before making key decisions. Washington DC-based Matthew Papez is ‘unique in his acceptance of challenges’ and has remarkable ‘legal talent, personality and determination’. In the same office, Craig Primis shows ‘clarity of legal thought’ and ‘strategic acumen’. Members of this ‘diligent’, ‘responsive’ group demonstrate a ‘high degree of knowledge’ about aviation products liability and impart ‘well thought-out solutions’.

Product liability and mass tort defense: automotive/transport

Index of tables

  1. Product liability and mass tort defense: automotive/transport
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Bowman and Brooke LLP’s team of ‘outstanding’ product defense specialists handles an extensive range of automotive liability cases covering road automobiles, motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles, and often acts as US national counsel for international manufacturers. The practice is valued for its deep bench of trial lawyers and coast-to-coast presence. Columbia-based Joel Smith and ‘tremendous trial lawyer’ Vincent Galvin often act for Japanese clients. For example, they recently defended Toyota against wrongful death and personal injury claims in its ‘unintended acceleration’ litigation. Phoenix-based Paul Cereghini is highly rated and is acting as lead counsel for Honda in national consumer class action concerning alleged window regulator defects. He also successfully defended Yamaha in litigation concerning its Rhino off-road vehicle. The team has a solid presence in Minneapolis, where David Kelly advised Mazda in a forum-shopping case in which the plaintiff sought a sympathetic jurisdiction. The matter concerned the design and manufacture of one of Mazda’s vehicles, and the firm successfully prevented the plaintiff from challenging the forum in which the case was being heard. Paul Carver retired from private practice in 2012.

The ‘outstandingWheeler Trigg O’Donnell LLP, ‘one of the icons of defense practice across the US’, continues to handle automotive cases at the ‘highest level’. Edward Stewart acted for Ford Motor Company to overturn a plaintiff verdict before the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals, in a case concerning a rollover incident that rendered an individual quadriplegic. The team successfully defended the same client in an appeal against a jury verdict in an electronic throttle defect case. ‘Terrific’ in all respects, this ‘high-caliber’ practice includes a number of ‘fine lawyers’, and is led by the exceptional Malcolm Wheeler.

Widely recognized as a ‘go-to firm for significant trials’, and considered to be among the ‘very best’ for personal injury and product liability advice, Campbell Campbell Edwards & Conroy P.C. has some ‘outstanding’ practitioners. Its ‘excellent trial attorneys’ include Philadelphia-based William Conroy and Tiffany Alexander, as well as Boston-based David Rogers, Trevor Keenan and ‘experienced’ partner James Campbell, who ‘knows what important at trial’ and is highly regarded for ‘efficient, effective representation’. Campbell recently defended Ford Motor Company in a wrongful death case involving asbestos in automotive brakes. The team also played an active role in three class actions concerning the fuel economy of cars. New clients include Tesla.

McGuireWoods LLP regularly acts as lead trial counsel for Ford Motor Company, including defending it against wrongful death claims alleging defects in its automotive products. Samuel Tarry and practice head Tracy Walker have been handling appeals in cases relating to asbestos brakes. For example, the duo recently acted as lead appellate counsel for the client in Lokey v Ford Motor Company, a wrongful death action involving an individual who was alleged to have contracted mesothelioma after exposure to asbestos brake products in Ford vehicles. Perry Miles recently acted in Gartman et al v Ford Motor Company, and successfully obtained a defense verdict for Ford.

Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP is a ‘great firm’ with a ‘very deep bench of talented lawyers’. Robert Adams leads the practice, which is trial counsel for Kia Motors and also acts as product liability counsel to Isuzu Motors America. Tyco recently instructed the team to act as national counsel in its automotive and general liability litigation. The firm is also acting for Toyota in certain product liability litigation and a number of class actions. Elsewhere, the team acted for a mid-sized bus dealer in litigation in California arising from the death of seven tourists following a bus crash.

Snell & Wilmer LLP’s ‘tremendous’ team is co-headed by Vaughn Crawford and the ‘terrific’ Warren Platt, who is ‘a great lawyer’ and remains ‘one of the icons of the defense community’. Its busy trial practice sees senior litigators Robert Gibson and Timothy O’Neill frequently represent automotive clients as national local and discovery counsel in class action and mass tort cases across the US. The team also has a superb reputation for pre-litigation counseling and advice on litigation avoidance.

At Bryan Cave LLP, consumer class action specialist Peter Herzog is recognized as a ‘long-time player’ in the automotive sector. He has an excellent record of defending companies including Mercedes-Benz and Ford Motor Company in consumer class actions across the US, and has also achieved the dismissal of putative class actions for clients including American Honda. Bruce Duffield, who is recommended for class action defense and complex issues of product design, has acted as sole counsel for General Motors in product liability jury trials.

DLA Piper’s automotive practice is led by Loren Brown, William Kiniry and Christopher Young. Kiniry acted for Porsche Cars North America to achieve dismissal of a putative class action concerning allegedly defective engines installed in 1999 Porsche 911 Carrera Coupes. James Brogan led a team that represented Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co in the US Supreme Court, which was a precedent-setting case concerning the exercising of personal jurisdiction following a bus accident in Paris that killed two US citizens from North Carolina. Toyota Motor Sales has instructed the team to act as regional trial counsel in a suite of personal injury cases arising from alleged instances of unintended acceleration in Toyota vehicles.

King & Spalding LLP is a ‘powerhouse’ in catastrophic injury and wrongful cases for clients in the automotive and transport sectors. Among its shipping and logistics clients are Freightliner and Allied Holdings. It also advises car manufacturers including Kia, General Motors and Toyota, as well as automotive component parts manufacturers including Delphi, Bosche and Fujikura. Philip Holladay recently acted as lead counsel for General Motors Canada, winning summary judgment for the defense in a wrongful death case concerning a crash in 2001. The team is held in high regard for its handling of nationwide discovery and Andrew Bayman continues to act for Toyota as its national discovery counsel in the series of unintended acceleration cases. Atlanta-based Chilton Varner is a highly venerated litigator with a broad base of litigious expertise.

Esteemed class action lawyer Richard Goetz leads the practice at O’Melveny & Myers LLP, which continues to act as national class action counsel for longstanding client, Ford Motor Company. Washington DC-based Brian Anderson recently defended the same client in a class action concerning alleged defects in its six-liter engines. Jonathan Hacker, chair of the firm’s Supreme Court and appellate practice, achieved a significant result for Viad Corp in the US Supreme Court case, Kurns v Railroad Friction Products Corp, which concerned questions of preemption and claims concerning asbestos in locomotives.

Ballard Spahr LLP’s small team combines expertise in both commercial litigation and quasi-criminal proceedings relating to product performance. It recently advised several car manufacturers on attorney general investigations into workplace accidents and continues to advise AM General on both regulatory and contentious issues linked with its vehicles. Roger Thomasch often acts as lead trial counsel for Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co, and has represented it in eight tire liability cases at federal and state level. The arrival of former New Jersey Supreme Court Justice Roberto Rivera-Soto adds significant trial and appellate expertise. Alongside practice head Neal Walters, Rivera-Soto recently defended Kia Motors in post-trial actions for legal fees and damages after the firm had helped the client to achieve class decertification.

Texas-based boutique Hartline, Dacus, Barger, Dreyer L.L.P acts for its broad spread of automotive manufacturer clients, which it represents in class actions and other multi-party disputes concerning defective products, warrantee claims and franchise litigation. Founding partner Vernon Hartline has substantial courtroom experience in automotive and tire liability cases. In the Corpus Christi office, Richard Crews is the go-to trial lawyer for component part suppliers and car manufacturers. Clients of the team include BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Subaru.

Hogan Lovells LLP’s main focus is on providing class action defense representation for various automotive manufacturers, and the practice is underpinned by the firm’s significant regulatory expertise. The team recently represented a major US car company in multi-district litigation concerning allegedly defective vehicles, which was heard before the US District Court for the Central District of California. Michael Kidney, who is highly recommended for cases concerning the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), recently advised an Asian automotive client regarding a putative nationwide class action, helping it to achieve a favorable settlement. The practice also represented a client in the US District Court Western District of New York, in a putative class action alleging defects in brake rotors and calipers. Hyundai Motor America is also a client, as is Carnival Corporation, which Houston-based Thad Dameris is representing in all US litigation arising from the grounding of the Costa Concordia cruise ship.

Pittsburgh-based John Goetz and Paul Pohl are Jones Day’s key contacts for representation in class action litigation. The team represents automotive manufacturers and component part suppliers across the transport and aviation sectors. Joseph Finley, Traci Lovitt and David Monde led the defense of Yamaha in product liability litigation at the Georgia Court of Appeals concerning its Rhino off-road vehicle. The team has also handed several other Rhino-related cases, and has obtained eight out of nine defense verdicts in those cases that have gone to trial.

Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP’s ‘very versatile’ team ‘can respond to a variety of different cases’ but is best known for non-class action automotive litigation. The group has demonstrable expertise in bad faith litigation and has acted for clients including Michelin. Melissa Foster Bird has experience advising rail and trucking companies. Robert Massie and Huntington office managing partner Marc Williams are the names to note.

Traditionally strong’ and ‘very deep’, Sidley Austin LLP is well regarded for its ability to handle large-scale multi-district litigation. Eric Mattson and Michael Andolina recently represented Honda in five vehicle class actions. They also defended the same client in a consumer fraud claim concerning the paint used on Honda’s cars and advised it in US and Canadian litigation concerning the company’s lawnmower products.

Thompson Coburn LLP provides ‘excellent’ and ‘inexpensive’ advice to automobile manufacturers and their financing companies, both in warrantee litigation and product liability class actions. St Louis-based Richard Mueller is an experienced trial lawyer who acts as product liability counsel for Kawasaki Motors Corp. Kathy Wisniewski is Chrysler Motors LLC’s national class action counsel and successfully defended it against in cases alleging defective vehicle parts. Other clients include Volkswagen of America and DaimlerChrysler Financial Services Americas LLC.

Product liability and mass tort defense: consumer products (including tobacco)

Index of tables

  1. Product liability and mass tort defense: consumer products (including tobacco)
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Arnold & Porter LLP is a ‘terrific law firm’ that fields a ‘top-notch’ team of ‘excellent legal strategists’. The practice has a key focus on consumer safety litigation, and acts as national counsel to Philip Morris in product liability and consumer fraud cases. It has been representing the tobacco giant in a series of class actions concerning light tobacco products. Ingo Sprie and Washington DC-based Geoffrey Michael are ‘brilliant legal minds’ but also ‘very practical’. The firm defended Phillip Morris against a number of Engle progeny litigation personal injury claims (derivative actions following the Florida Supreme Court’s vacation of the Engle damages award and class decertification), and Philip Curtis and John Massaro achieved the decertification of a class of purchasers of Malboro Lights before the New Hampshire Supreme Court. In other work, Trenton Norris continues to advise a number of prominent US restaurants in a dispute with an animals rights group, concerning Proposition 65 warning for a natural chemical by-product of grilled chicken products. Other clients of the practice include BP Products North America and Applebee’s. This ‘very bright’ team also includes Jonathan Stern, whose background as a public defender is a major asset to the team, and Eric Rubel, whose in-house experience at the Consumer Product Safety Commission is also a boon. Rubel and Anand Agneshwar co-head the practice. New York'sPhilip Curtis and Nancy Milburn are also recommended.

Jones Day is a ‘go-to’ firm for prominent consumer product manufacturers and has ‘a terrific reputation’ across the market. Its trial practice is extremely busy but has the necessary critical mass to handle major multi-district litigation throughout the country. A team including John Walker and David Monde recently obtained a defense verdict for RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company in an Engle progeny lawsuit before a federal court. Cleveland-based Mark Belasic and Dennis Murphy successfully defended the same client in a wrongful death claim brought by the widow of a deceased victim of lung cancer. The group also has a long-term client relationship with The Sherwin-Williams Company, for which it is national counsel in litigation concerning lead paint and pigments, and, in 2012, practice head Paul Pohl helped the client to achieve class decertification in Illinois. Boston-based Dana Baiocco and Christopher Morrison represented footwear company Vibram USA as nationwide defense counsel in putative class actions and false advertising disputes. Theodore Grossman heads the litigation team in Cleveland and has played a key role in several large class actions.

Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP’s ‘superb’ team is a leading player in tobacco litigation, and is widely sought for its deep bench of ‘excellent first chair trial lawyers’. This ‘excellent’ yet ‘inexpensive’ group is widely regarded as being one of the ‘best in the world at trying products liability cases’. This ‘tremendous’ team of trial attorneys includes Kansas-based Walt Cofer, who is the firm’s lead adviser to Phillip Morris and is chair of the global product liability group. San Francisco-based Lucy Mason and Miami-based Bill Geraghty and Kenneth Reilly have had notable successes for Phillip Morris as lead counsel in Engle progeny litigation, having obtained four defense verdicts since February 2012. Annie Chuang in San Francisco and experienced litigator Stanley Davis in Kansas City advised Phillip Morris in litigation concerning ‘light’ tobacco products. Beyond its tobacco practice, the team also defended several gas and convenience stores, including 7Eleven and QuikTrip Corp, in multi-district litigation concerning consumer protection rules pertaining to the sale of gasoline without accounting for or highlighting temperature expansion. The practice also handles all US product liability litigation for Tyco - a wide-ranging brief that has included successfully defending the client against defective product claims. The team recruited William Yoder from an in-house role in June 2012, and received a significant boost when Sean Wajert joined the firm from Dechert LLP in May 2012. Former global head of product liability Gary Long retired in 2012.

Chadbourne & Parke LLP’s New York based team suffered a setback when key partners Thomas Riley, Gregory Loss and David Wallace joined Herbert Smith Freehills in August 2012, taking the tobacco practice with them. However, the practice remains able to provide ‘top-notch service and support’ and is a trusted adviser to clients in high-risk and high-value matters. Practice co-heads Phoebe Wilkinson and Mary Yelenick are highly regarded for their ‘precise work’ and ‘very good knowledge’ of the product liability practice area. The pair represented a European appliance manufacturer in a putative consumer fraud class action alleging design defects in one of its household products. The firm maintains a longstanding client relationship with Beam Global Spirits & Wine, which it represents in litigation concerning its beverage alcohol products. Donald Strauber - ‘the dean of the US beverage alcohol liability defense bar’ - is considered to be among the ‘best in the business’. Alongside Yelenic, he recently defended Beam Global Spirits & Wine in putative consumer fraud class actions concerning alleged misleading advertising of its Skinnygirl Margarita beverage. LG Electronics sought the practice’s representation in consumer fraud class action certification proceedings before the US District Court for the District of New Jersey, which concerned alleged non-compliance with the state’s Energy Star program.

Overall service is outstanding’ at Goodwin Procter LLP, where the team attracts praise for its ‘very high level of industry knowledge’. The practice has ‘a very good reputation’ for providing comprehensive product liability advice that extends to labeling risks, product launches and countrywide litigation strategy. It has seen an increase in instructions from food and dietary supplement companies, seeking representation in consumer product and personal injury claims, an area in which practice head Joanne Gray has significant experience. She continues to represent Herbalife International of America in mass tort litigation and recently defended it in all federal litigation concerning natural ephedra, cases that were consolidated in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York. Forrest Hainline is the team’s standout trial lawyer, and is representing Bumble Bee Foods in a labeling class action in San Francisco in addition to disputes with several District Attorneys across California.

Noted for ‘excellence’ across the country, Latham & Watkins LLP achieved a coup when it boosted its product liability expertise in Boston by recruiting Kenneth Parsigian and Gwyn Williams from Goodwin Procter LLP in October 2012. Williams is ‘a very strong team leader’ and provides ‘quick, clear and thoughtful’ advice, ensuring that ‘nothing falls through the cracks when she is responsible’. ‘Truly the full package’, Parsigian has a breadth of experience in tobacco work and long history of advising both Philip Morris USA and Philip Morris International as lead counsel in multiple mass torts across the country and internationally. Praised for his ‘unparalleled success rate’, he is ‘a world-class trial lawyer’ and ‘master strategist’ who puts together ‘highly effective’ teams. Parsigian was recently appointed as chair of the Boston office’s litigation group. In Washington DC, William Rawson and Christine Rolph represented Playtex in alleged consumer fraud and warranty claims in the form of putative class actions across 20 states. Elsewhere, Aurora Organic Dairy instructed Mark Mester in a dispute concerning product labeling issues under Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 anad National Organic Program regulations. ConocoPhillips, Monsanto and Georgia-Pacific are also clients.

Led by San Diego-based Erin Bosman, Morrison & Foerster LLP’s team continues to focus on non-tobacco industries and has exceptional depth on the West Coast. It acts for consumer electronics manufacturers, material producers and industry associations in litigation concerning defective goods, toxic substances and issues concerning US Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act. In San Francisco, ‘leading lawyerMichèle Corash is a ‘really good’ source of advice for California Proposition 65 matters. Alongside Robert Falk, she is defending a club of 21 food and drink producers (including Dole and Del Monte) in federal and state class actions concerning levels of arsenic and lead in their products. The team was also instructed by a group of coffee producers, including Illy and Kraft, to defend it in the Los Angeles Superior Court against allegations of the presence of acrylamide in the parties’ produce. William Stern defended Monier against a false advertising class action claiming aggregated damages of over $450m. Other notable clients include Cytec Industries, Mattel and Lucasfilm.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP represents a spread of clients in the consumer electronics, pharmaceuticals and automotive industries, and often acts as lead counsel in multi-district litigation concerning product defects and personal injury claims. John Beisner is ‘a great lawyer for complex litigation’. He and Jessica Miller, both based in Washington DC, successfully defended Nissan in class actions concerning alleged defects in its automatic transmission system that caused cars to roll away after drivers left them. Thomas Nolan in Los Angeles and Stephen Robinson in New York led a team acting as lead trial counsel for Toyota in multi-district litigation pending in the US District Court for the Central District of California, involving claims of unintended acceleration. Beisner and ‘distinguished industry leader’ Russell Jackson defended Electrolux in numerous class actions alleging defects in the client’s front-loading washing machines. Highly venerated product liability strategist Sheila Birnbaum is ‘second to none’.

Despite some big-name departures, Dechert LLP’s product liability practice retains a ‘great reputation’ and a team of excellent attorneys. After Sean Wajert joined Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP to head up its new Philadelphia office in May 2012, Ben Barnett was appointed to head the practice, which continues to receive instructions from tobacco producer Philip Morris. Steven Weisburd and antitrust specialist Joseph Escher led the team that successfully defended Time Warner Cable in consumer class action under Californian competition law. Alongside white-collar crime litigator Matthew Larrabee, Weisburd acted in two putative class actions for Google concerning the alleged failure of one of its smartphones to maintain connectivity with 3G wireless networks. The practice successfully defended the same client against all of these claims, including a consolidated amended complaint before the US District Court for the Northern District of California. Ezra Rosenberg provides ‘first-rate service’ and is ‘a master of class action law’ with ‘phenomenal litigation judgment’. He often represents major tobacco companies in class actions and proceedings before the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or the Tobacco Products Scientific Advisory Council.

Wonderful product liability firmKirkland & Ellis LLP is ‘a national player’ with broad coverage across the spectrum of product defense work. Washington DC-based Eugene Assaf and Craig Primis continue to defend Honeywell International in a case brought by the Department of Justice before the US District Court for the District of Columbia, concerning allegedly defective body armor. In Chicago, practice head Andrew McGaan leads advice to longstanding client RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company, which the team recently represented in multi-state arbitration regarding adjustments to the Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement. In Chicago, Terrence Dee and Michael Slade won summary judgment for Motorola in a long-running case in Washington DC Superior Court concerning potential health risks of cellphones. Michael Jones and Jennifer Levy are also recommended.

Sidley Austin LLP has an active product liability practice in Chicago and Los Angeles, and also earns praise for its advice in FDA-related matters, which is an area of expertise for the firm. Bayer provided the practice with a number of new instructions in consumer fraud cases and recently also sought guidance in class action litigation concerning alleged false advertising of a probiotic supplement. Kara McCall led the defense of NBTY against similar claims pertaining to the marketing of its joint-comfort glucosamine supplement. McCall and practice head Michael Davis represented Owens Corning in the US Supreme Court to defend against defective design, warranty and advertising-related claims relating to its shingle business. The team also has a substantial roster of pharmaceuticals clients including AstraZeneca, which Mark Haddad and Paul Zidlicky advised in appellate litigation before the Kentucky Court of Appeals concerning an alleged drug fraud.

Denver-based Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell LLP’s ‘terrific’ consumer products practice is limited in scale but has a ‘very good’ reputation for class action litigation and mass tort defense. Its client base includes manufacturers of children’s products, footwear and household appliances. John Fitzpatrick recently obtained a complete defense verdict for Evenflo before the US District Court for the District of Colorado against a $20m claim concerning brain injuries sustained by a child following a car accident involving a car seat manufactured by Evenflo. Malcolm Wheeler is a ‘superb’ advocate, and fellow name partner John Trigg is also recommended. Michael Williams is another name to note, but Julie Walker left the firm in May 2012.

DLA Piper’s ‘very good’ team has a ‘good reputation’ for consumer product defense, especially in California, and is particularly recommended for ‘big-dollar cases’; the group ‘gets results’ and ‘works well with others’. Loren Brown, William Kiniry and Christopher Young co-head the practice, which ‘travels well to other jurisdictions’ and contains lawyers that ‘know their way around a courtroom’. Clients have ‘full confidence’ in San Diego-based Brian Foster and William Boggs, who are both representing Lorillard Tobacco Company in product liability disputes in Florida and California. In September 2012, the duo achieved significant success for Lorillard by gaining dismissal of all consumer fraud class actions brought against it under California’s consumer fraud statute. In Maryland, the firm represented Live Nation Entertainment in class action claims relating to ticketing service charges and an alleged violation of Baltimore City’s ‘anti-scalping’ law to prevent the charging of administration fees during ticket sales. The practice also defended Olympus Imaging America and Olympus Corporation in consumer class actions alleging false advertising of its camera products and alleged defects in their design. Other clients include Sony Computer Entertainment America, Defiance Metal Products and Groupon.

Excellent’ in New York and Miami, Greenberg Traurig LLP is ‘responsive’ and ‘provides timely legal advice while taking into account the specifics of clients’ businesses.’ Robert Herrington, David Ross and ‘strategic thinkerFrancis Citera co-head the practice. Citera imparts ‘timely’ advice and ‘makes himself available no matter how busy he is’. The team fields ‘top people’ who are ‘very good at what they do’, and has a strong reputation for appellate work in Florida. Senior partners staff cases leanly and endeavor to ‘consider long-term strategy, not just the short term’. Hilarie Bass and Mark Salky are acting as lead counsel for several public and private homebuilders in actions concerning allegedly defective drywall manufactured in China. The team also defended a global electronics manufacturer in litigation concerning an allegedly defective component part it supplied, which led to a product recall. Gretchen Miller provides ‘superior’ representation in Chicago, and New York-based Alan Mansfield is an ‘excellent lawyer’ with a ‘terrific’ set of skills.

A ‘very fine firm overall’, King & Spalding LLP’s large practice is ‘good to work with’ and its attorneys are ‘great team players’. The firm has broad national coverage with offices on both coasts and has a dedicated science practice group that provides additional regulatory support in complex cases. The practice has a key focus on tobacco litigation defense. ‘Great trial lawyerJeffrey Furr has acted as lead counsel to RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company in major litigation for over 15 years. With the assistance of Ursula Henninger and Ray Persons, he recently represented RJ Reynolds in Engle progeny cases in Florida. Atlanta-based Richard Schneider formed part of the team that achieved a significant victory for RJ Reynolds in an appeal before the Florida First District Court of Appeal concerning limitation periods for Engle class members. William Durham and Randy Bassett are other recommended figures in Atlanta.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP’s New York-based consumer products team is applauded for its ‘commercial approach’, ‘in-depth knowledge of complex matters’ and its ability to ‘retain sight of the big picture’. David Ichel has a broad practice and extensive experience in alcoholic beverages litigation. He continues to act as lead defense counsel to producers of beer, wine and spirits, and recently defended Heineken, among others, in class actions concerning its marketing strategies. Together with Joseph McLaughlin, Ichel also defended Ducati in nationwide consumer class action concerning alleged defects in its thermoplastic fuel tanks. The practice also acted for Sirius XM Radio in relation to a putative class action claiming false advertising and alleged breaches of New York’s consumer protection laws. Other clients include Blackstone, Travelers and Vivendi. The practice is widely praised for its ‘fantastic response times’ and ‘ability to explain the law in lay terms’. Barry Ostrager is ‘blessed with gravitas’ and Mary Elizabeth McGarry is also highly regarded.

Winston & Strawn LLP benefits from a longstanding relationship with pharmaceuticals and tobacco clients and is a ‘trusted’ adviser in major class actions. George Lombardi is ‘a bet-the-company trial lawyer’, and has acted as lead counsel for Phillip Morris in litigation brought by the federal government. Lombardi is ‘extremely easy to work with’ and strikes up a ‘great rapport with juries’. The team’s senior advisers are supported by ‘first-rate junior partners’ that consistently show ‘tremendous knowledge and judgment’. Alexander Shaknes has played an important role in advising Phillip Morris in arbitration concerning the 1998 Master Service Agreement, and senior litigator Dan Webb - the firm’s chairman - has a ‘well-deserved reputation’ for successfully trying cases. Thomas Quigley heads the practice group, which ‘matches up well against other go-to firms for bet the company litigation’. John Moss recently represented LG Electronics in national class action concerning its microwave ovens, which were sold under the General Electric brand. Other names to note include Jennifer Malin and Luke Connelly in New York, as well as Lawrence Desideri and Scott Glauberman in Chicago.

Product liability and mass tort defense: pharmaceuticals and medical devices

Index of tables

  1. Product liability and mass tort defense: pharmaceuticals and medical devices
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Kaye Scholer LLP is an ‘industry leader’ and ‘the ideal firm’ for guiding clients through the life science product lifecycle and, as part of this, the team continues to represent clients in product liability and mass tort cases. It is global strategy counsel to Pfizer subsidiaries Wyeth Pharmaceuticals and Pharmacia & Upjohn, and also acts as their national counsel to in hormone replacement therapy litigation. James Herschlein defended Pfizer in litigation concerning the medication, Lybrel. The plaintiff claimed to have developed deep vein thrombosis after taking the medicine, but the team gained a full dismissal of all product liability claims. Leading trial lawyer Pamela Yates recently represented Qualitest Pharmaceuticals and Endo Pharmaceuticals in putative class actions concerning alleged issues with the packaging of oral contraceptives. New York-based Lori Leskin co-chairs the practice alongside Arthur Brown. William Hoffman is ‘terrific in this space’, and attracts significant praise.

Widely regarded as ‘leaders in the industry’, Reed Smith LLP’s attorneys regularly act for major pharmaceuticals medical devices companies in mass litigation and complex product liability cases. Thomas Yoo and Melissa Geist are national coordinating counsel to Merck in litigation concerning hormonal contraceptive, NuvaRing. In May 2012, the Philadelphia team received a significant boost following the arrival of Stephen McConnell and counsel James Beck from Dechert LLP. Another notable highlight saw John Hooper and Los Angeles-based Michael Brown act as national coordinating and trial counsel to C. R. Bard in multi-district litigation concerning its Avaulta surgical mesh products. The same client also sought the firm’s representation in a class action involving Bard Inferior Vena Cava filters, where plaintiffs alleged risk of future harm following their use of the product. Elsewhere, American Medical Systems retained a team led by Barbara Binis to advise it as national counsel in litigation concerning its transvaginal mesh product, defending it against personal injury claims. GlaxoSmithKline is another key client, which the team has defended as trial counsel in product liability litigation concerning medication for diabetics.

Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP’s ‘exceptional lawyers, strategists and counselors’ are ‘extremely responsive’ and instill confidence in clients by imparting ‘stellar legal advice’. In Washington DC, practice head Madeleine McDonough demonstrates ‘first-rate’ legal expertise, and places the satisfaction of her clients at the ‘top of her priority list’. The ‘practical’ and ‘savvy’ Harvey Kaplan has ‘a wealth of experience’ and provides ‘tremendous credibility’ in court. McDonough and Kaplan are national counsel to Mylan Pharmaceuticals in over 1,300 lawsuits concerning Digitek, a drug used to treat heart failure and arrhythmia. One notable appellate instruction saw Houston-based Gene Williams and Manuel López act for Centocor before the Texas Supreme Court. Marie Woodbury defended Bausch & Lomb in consolidated litigation and multi-district litigation seeking damages for infections allegedly caused by contamination of ReNu and MoistureLoc contact lens products. Other clients include GlaxoSmithKline, Bayer and Boston Scientific.

Sidley Austin LLP’s ‘excellent’, ‘highly experienced’ team gives ‘terrific’ advice on litigation strategy. Team members demonstrate ‘good industry knowledge’ as well as ‘deep expertise’ in the growing area of consumer fraud. Among the area’s ‘best attorneys’, Maja Eaton has a track record of handling asbestos claims for major healthcare clients, and acting for GE Healthcare in litigation concerning Omniscan, an injectable contrast agent used in MRI scans, which allegedly caused patients to develop nephrogenic systemic fibrosis (NSF). Eaton recently helped the client win dismissal of a number of long-running multi-district claims against it. One significant appellate matter saw the team assist Schering Corporation with gaining affirmation of a favorable summary judgment pertaining to a prescription medicine. Debra Pole is a highly regarded trial attorney alongside ‘experienced litigator’ and tactician Sara Gourley, who recently advised Grunenthal International in potential thalidomide litigation, and also acted for Armour Pharmaceutical Company in litigation concerning blood derivative products used to treat hemophilia. Eugene Schoon, Catherine Valerio Barrad and Rebecca Wood were key figures in a team instructed to defend Bayer HealthCare at state and federal level in litigation relating to Trasylol. Other clients include AstraZeneca and Merck Sharp & Dohme.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP is defending Endo Pharmaceuticals and several of its subsidiaries in personal injury litigation concerning generic medications containing propoxyphene and metoclopramide. Key partner Mark Cheffo has an active medical device practice and recently defended Intuitive Surgical against personal injury claims concerning an allegedly faulty surgical assistance robot. John Beisner and Jessica Miller, both based in Washington DC, acted as lead counsel to Johnson & Johnson (and several of its subsidiaries) in multi-district litigation relating to its Pinnacle Acetabular Cup System hip prosthesis. The pair also continues to act for Merck in federal and state court litigation involving Vioxx, and recently advised the same client in connection with cases pertaining to Fosamax and NuvaRing. A notable highlight saw the team successfully appeal against certification of a consumer class during Vioxx litigation before the Appeals Court of Kentucky. The highly respected Sheila Birnbaum acted as national counsel to Pfizer in class actions and individual personal injury cases concerning Wyeth’s hormone therapy products.

Lauded for its ‘strong bench’, the Washington DC-based team at Williams & Connolly LLP provides ‘consistently excellent response times’ and shows ‘extensive experience in the area of mass tort defense’. Praised for ‘adding value’, the team is highlighted for its analytical skills and ability to deliver services ‘efficiently’ and ‘economically’. Heidi Hubbard and Joseph Petrosinelli continue to represent Pfizer as co-lead national counsel in litigation concerning Chantix smoking cessation aid. Bayer instructed the team to act as coordinating counsel and trial counsel in litigation stemming from its birth control products. ‘Brilliant lawyer and strategist’ Douglas Marvin is ‘wonderfully adept at handling bet-the-farm cases’. Ryan Scarborough defended Wyeth in numerous state and federal lawsuits regarding hormone therapy drugs. Stephen Raber is an ‘excellent trial lawyer’ and acts as national counsel to Genentech in litigation relating to Raptiva, which allegedly caused some patients to suffer fatal brain infections. Kannon Shanmugam is a ‘wonderfully talented’ appellate attorney and US Supreme Court advocate, while F Lane Heard III is recommended for coordinating national defense strategy.

Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP is home to a team of ‘top-notch’ lawyers that get ‘good results’ for their clients. The firm attracts particular praise for its key role for Merck in the sprawling Vioxx litigation. ‘Outstanding’ name partner Philip Beck is ‘very talented’ and ‘a really good trial lawyer’, and has played an important role in the Vioxx saga. Chicago-based Katherine Minarik, Michael Valaik and Katherine Swift acted for Bayer to defeat a lawsuit brought by a former employee under the False Claims Act, concerning cholesterol-lowering drug, Baycol.

Peers have the ‘highest regard’ for DLA Piper’s team of ‘top people’. Loren Brown has ‘an excellent scientific mind’, ‘thinks through things from new angles’, and is ‘very good’ on case strategy. As co-national counsel, she oversaw the defense of Pfizer against over 2,500 personal injury claims relating to Chantix, achieving a summary judgment in the multi-district litigation, which led to the dismissal of several hundred cases. ‘Big thinkerJohn Dougherty provides clients with ‘creative solutions’ and continues to advise Pfizer regarding its exposure in the long-running hormone therapy litigation. A San Diego-based team including Shirli Fabbri Weiss, Christopher Young, and Julie Hussey represented Bayer Healthcare and Bayer Corporation in consumer litigation across California regarding weight-loss tablets). It recently acted as national counsel for the same clients in litigation concerning One-A-Day Men’s Multivitamin products. Another notable instruction saw GE Company and GE Healthcare instruct the team as national litigation counsel in mass tort litigation arising from its gadolinium-based contrast agent, Omniscan. The team also represented DJO Global in nationwide lawsuits concerning cold therapy medical devices. Philadelphia-based William Kiniry is also recommended.

Dechert LLP lost more key figures in 2012, including Sean Wajert to Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP and Stephen McConnell to Reed Smith LLP. However, the practice continued to focus on class actions and personal injury cases for major pharmaceuticals companies. Robert Heim acted for Pfizer before the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania in a complex case concerning punitive damages relating to hormone therapy. Together with strategist Judy Leone, Heim is representing Pfizer in multi-district litigation concerning Zoloft and its alleged link to birth defects. In Philadelphia, Richard Berkman and Will Sachse defended Baxter Healthcare and Wyeth against personal injury claims stemming from the use of Reglan heartburn medication. Ezra Rosenberg defended Pfizer in New Jersey against negligence claims brought by plaintiffs who used a metoclopramide generic equivalent to Reglan. Austin-based Steven Weisburd maintains a busy appellate practice, and counts HealthTronics among his clients. Ben Barnett heads the practice.

Excellent’ litigation boutique Goldman Ismail Tomaselli Brennan & Baum LLP fields highly experienced trial attorneys with specialist knowledge in product liability and mass tort litigation involving medical devices and pharmaceuticals; it has ‘impressive industry and company knowledge’. Medtronic sought the team’s representation in multi-district litigation over its Sprint Fidelis heart-defibrillation leads, consolidated before federal court in Minnesota. The team is praised for its expertise in scientific evidence, which is bolstered by the presence of two medically trained attorneys. Recent experience includes defending large pharmaceuticals companies, including Merck, in class actions and various actions initiated by state governments. Andrew Goldman continued to act as national trial counsel to Merck in in multi-district litigation concerning the risk of femur fractures in long-term use of Fosamax osteoporosis treatment. Tarek Ismail has played a key role in defending Merck against attorney general actions seeking reimbursements for Vioxx-related MedicAid costs. The team also acted as national counsel to Bayer HealthCare in over 500 lawsuits concerning Magnevist and its alleged link to nephrogenic systemic fibrosis. Kenneth Baum, Joe Tomaselli and Sean Brennan are also recommended. Overall, the practice’s advice is ‘consistently superb’, and work is ‘impressively cost competitive’ as well as ‘timely’ and ‘responsive’ in all respects.

Traditionally strongest in the South, King & Spalding LLP is steadily growing a countrywide practice through its offices in Washington DC and San Francisco. The group attracts praise for its ‘excellent’ response times, as well as industry knowledge and considerable bench strength. It continues to act as both national coordinating and lead trial counsel to GlaxoSmithKline in litigation involving antidepressant drug, Paxil. AstraZeneca, Merck and Johnson & Johnson are also clients. In Atlanta, the ‘terrificChilton Varner is ‘one of the finest trial lawyers in the country’ and ‘dean of the product liability Bar’. The ‘remarkably talented’ Andy Bayman is ‘just as capable in the courtroom as he is in the backroom strategizing’. Houston-based Bruce Hurley is acting for DePuy Orthopedics as trial counsel in litigation concerning its Pinnacle hip implants. Stephen Devereaux is ‘a master strategist’ and ‘creative thinker’, and Robert Woo has the ‘perfect demeanor’ to go along with his ‘extraordinary insights and intelligence’. Theodore Hester is a ‘wonderful’ adviser: his judgment, attention to detail and knowledge of the inner workings of Congress ‘are matched only by his extraordinary integrity’.

Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP is held in ‘high regard’ for its courtroom experience and is widely considered to be ‘fantastic at trials’. The esteemed David Dukes and Mark Jones are ‘people you really want to have on your trial team’. The firm’s ‘solid bench’ also includes the ‘excellent’ John Kuppens, who is ‘very responsive’ and ‘a joy to work with’. The practice was reinforced in October 2012 when it hired of counsel Pam Ullman from an in-house role at Aventis. A recent victory saw the group achieve a defense verdict in Philadelphia for a pharmaceuticals company in a high-profile case concerning hormone therapy litigation. Clients of the firm have included CR Bard, Wyeth and Eli Lilly.

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s ‘very responsive’ product liability defense practice has ‘a deep bench of good trial lawyers’, and works mainly in the South and Southwest of the country. The team has an excellent track record of representing Merck in difficult venues in Texas. Stephen Tipps recently achieved a significant victory for Merck before the Texas Supreme Court reversing liability for the death of a 71-year-old patient, which was allegedly caused by Vioxx. Travis Sales and the ‘smart’ and ‘practicalRichard Josephson have played a key role in a number of third-party payer cases. Sales recently acted as co-counsel to Merck in a consumer class action brought against it on behalf of all purchasers of Vioxx in Missouri. Practice co-head Earl Austin led advice to AstraZeneca in Seroquel litigation involving over 30,000 personal injury claims. The practice also represented Novartis Vaccines and Diagnostics, and Gen-Probe in a multi-defendant personal injury case in which a patient contracted HIV, allegedly after a corneal tissue transplant operation linked to contaminated contact lens solution. Fellow practice co-head Steve Scheve is also recommended.

Lauded for providing an ‘outstanding level of service’, Bowman and Brooke LLP has leveraged its automotive product liability expertise into a growing practice providing superb support to pharmaceuticals and medical devices companies. The team is ‘extremely responsive’ and has ‘real expertise’. Managing partner Kim Schmid is ‘very focused on bringing value’ to her clients and staffs cases with ‘efficient, high-value attorneys’. Schmid acted as national coordinating counsel for Breg in litigation concerning a pain pump product. Elsewhere, the team acted for H & P Industries and Triad Group in mass tort litigation concerning alcohol prep pads, defending the clients against numerous wrongful death and personal injury claims across the country. In pharmaceuticals, mandates included Austin-based Kelly Kimbrough acting as lead counsel to Alaven Pharmaceuticals in countrywide litigation concerning the alleged side effects of Reglan. Randall Christian is another name to note. The team provides top-notch advice and is ‘a pleasure to work with’.

Mississippi-based Butler, Snow, O’Mara, Stevens and Cannada, PLLC fields a small but robust team of ‘practiced trial lawyers’, and litigates a large number of cases across the US. It acts for major pharmaceutical companies including Ortho-McNeil Janssen and Johnson & Johnson. Its track record in high-stakes pharmaceuticals litigation includes cases involving prescription cholesterol medication, birth control products, influenza vaccines, and Vioxx arthritis pain reliever. Orlando Richmond and Christy Jones are ‘exceptional’ trial attorneys.

Covington & Burling LLP’s team of ‘strategic thinkers’ have good regulatory insight, and achieve ‘great results in appeals’ at federal and state court level. The practice is heavily immersed in handling investigations, but also achieved a number of trial wins in 2012. Mike Imbroscio and Paul Schmidt played a key role for Roche in litigation concerning inflammatory bowel disease, allegedly caused by use of Accutane. Other clients include Merck, Pfizer and a number of prominent pharmaceuticals trade associations. Washington DC-based Mike Brock is an ‘outstanding trial lawyer’ and has earned a number of defense verdicts for clients in prominent pharmaceuticals litigation including cases pertaining to Vioxx, Fosamax and Seroquel. Life sciences specialist Patrick Davies is also recommended.

Greenberg Traurig LLP is home to a ‘strong trial team’ with a distinct focus on product liability cases concerning medical devices. The practice continued to receive a number of instructions from Medtronic and Medtronic MiniMed, and acted as national counsel in litigation surrounding cardiac, surgical and neuromodulation operations. Medtronic also instructed the firm to defend it in litigation alleging that its insulin pump was defectively labeled, which allegedly resulted in brain injury. ‘Highly regarded’ practice head Lori Cohen is a ‘pleasure to work with’ and is ‘a true life science product liability lawyer’. She recently acted as lead national counsel to Sandoz in consolidated state court lawsuits across California, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, concerning metoclopramide, a generic version of Reglan heartburn medication. Teva Pharmaceuticals USA instructed the team to defend it against personal injury and negligence claims concerning propoxyphene products. Other clients include I-Flow and Sun Pharmaceuticals Industries. Ginger Pigott in Los Angeles and Atlanta-based of counsel Beth Toberman are also recommended.

Hogan Lovells LLP’s firm-wide experience in life sciences industries underpins its product liability offering, and it attracts praise for its combination of regulatory lawyers and product liability trial attorneys. The team handles lawsuits nationally, as well as FDA investigations and litigation under the False Claims Act. The group recently attracted several new clients to its roster and continued to act as national product liability counsel to a major US biopharmaceuticals company and an Asian medical devices manufacturer. Notably, the firm hired life sciences expert Barry Thompson from Reed Smith LLP to join the Los Angeles office in 2012. Washington DC-based practice head Michael Kidney is recommended, as is Lauren Colton in Baltimore.

Robb Patryk and Diane Lifton co-chair the New York-based practice at Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP, which provides national coverage for its clients, whom it advises on countrywide recalls and product defense. Ted Mayer continued to act in the Vioxx litigation together with Charles Cohen and James Fitzpatrick. William Beausoleil continues to advise New York Blood Center as lead counsel in various cases, including litigation concerning alleged hepatitis and HIV contamination of its blood products. Elsewhere, the team acted as trial counsel to Novartis Pharmaceuticals in hormone therapy litigation before a New Jersey court. Merck & Co and Pfizer are also key clients.

With teams in its Chicago, New York and Washington DC offices, Kirkland & Ellis LLP continued to expand its pharmaceuticals and medical devices practice, winning new instructions from clients including Baxter Healthcare and Teva Pharmaceuticals. The firm has a ‘strong bench’ of attorneys and clients are ‘exceptionally pleased’ with advice provided. Highly regarded trial lawyer Michael Foradas represented Abbott Laboratories as nationwide counsel in litigation concerning its arthritis and Crohn’s disease treatment, Humira. Leslie Smith produces ‘outstanding work’ and ‘manages her team well’. New York-based Jay Lefkowitz acted for Baxter Healthcare in a large number of lawsuits arising from an outbreak of hepatitis in Las Vegas in 2008, allegedly as a result of using propofol anesthetic products. The team also saw an uptick in government investigations stemming from misbranding and promotions of off-label uses.

Morrison & Foerster LLP is a ‘go-to firm’ for high-stakes class action and mass tort litigation, and provides a ‘Rolls-Royce service’. Although its practice is rooted in San Francisco, the firm also provides ‘outstanding service’ from its offices in San Diego and Los Angeles. The firm acted as national counsel to Fresenius Kabi USA in litigation over a local anesthetic product used in pain pumps. The team is praised for its lean staffing and response times that are ‘always great’, as well as its consistent ability to provide ‘key knowledge resources for any circumstance’. James Huston and San Diego-based practice head Erin Bosman recently acted for APP Pharmaceuticals in multi-district litigation proceedings, achieving dismissal of many plaintiff personal injury claims pertaining to its cancer drug, Aredia. The team also has an active consumer fraud practice and recently defended Mylan Laboratories in a False Claims Act case in Massachusetts. Arturo González and William Tarantino are ‘strongly recommended’.

Pepper Hamilton LLP’s Nina Gussack is a widely recommended figure in the product liability defense market. Her team has been extremely active in defending against attorney general actions across the country. The practice also works closely alongside the firm’s white-collar crime department to advise its clients during government investigations. Gussack and colleagues continue to act as national counsel to GlaxoSmithKline in multi-district litigation concerning its diabetes medication, Avandia. Together with settlement strategist George Lehner, Gussack also acts for Eli Lilly as national counsel in litigation concerning various products including Prozac, Byetta and Zyprexa. Murray Levin and Sean Fahey are acting as national counsel and national trial counsel to Medtronic in litigation stemming from several of its medical devices. Anthony Vale is also recommended.

The pharmaceutical product defense practice is a key area of activity for Tucker Ellis & West, which is recognized as a ‘very good firm’ for high-value trials. Longstanding client Johnson & Johnson continued to provide the team with a steady flow of product liability instructions pertaining to various subsidiaries. Dustin Rawlin and John Lewis recently acted as national counsel to Mentor Worldwide in litigation arising from its saline and silicone gel breast implants products. Rita Maimbourg is acting as lead counsel to subsidiaries of Johnson & Johnson in litigation pertaining to Duragesic pain reliever. Richard Dean represented Actavis as a co-defendant in winning summary judgment in Lyman et al v Pfizer et al, and was also instructed by AmeriDOSE to advise on litigation stemming from the alleged contamination of steroid injections. Michele Anderson counts Takeda Pharmaceuticals among her clients. Jeffrey Healy heads the practice.

Levels of service are ‘excellent’ at Venable LLP where the team acted as national counsel to Merck in the Fosamax litigation, defending it against claims that the drug allegedly causes osteonecrosis of the jaw and atypical femur fractures. Bruce Parker, who is highlighted for his ability to handle complex scientific cases, recently acted for Takeda in national litigation involving Actos. Together with Jason Rose, Parker also acted as national counsel to Boehringer Ingelheim in federal lawsuits pertaining to Mirapex, a drug used for the treatment of Parkinson disease. ‘Excellent trial lawyerPaul Strain is considered to be among the ‘top tier of product liability defense lawyers in the country’. He is ‘fiercely loyal to the client’ and ‘tough when he has to be’. Stephen Marshall is also ‘very good’ and Dino Sangiamo is also recommended.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP significantly reinforced its practice when it hired ‘highly regarded’ and ‘very accomplished trial lawyerDiane Sullivan from Dechert LLP in 2012. The team acts for a range of pharmaceuticals and biopharmaceuticals companies in contentious marketing and product development disputes, in addition to international arbitrations concerning medical products. Ortho-McNeil Pharmaceutical, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, instructed the firm to act as lead trial counsel in over 50 instances of hormone therapy litigation. The team also acted as lead counsel to defend Avantor Performance Materials against negligence, fraud, and civil conspiracy lawsuits concerning thalidomide.

Wheeler Trigg O’Donnell LLP’s modestly sized practice attracts praise for its representation of Pfizer, for which it is acting as national trial counsel in wrongful death and personal injury litigation concerning Zoloft, Neurontin and hormone replacement therapies. Habib Nasrullah and name partner Michael O’Donnell are serving as national counsel to Northstar Rx in litigation concerning some of its generic products; the team has recently achieved the dismissal of 115 claims across ten states. On the medical devices front, the firm acted as national coordinating counsel to Advanced Bionics in litigation arising from its cochlear implants. A team including John Fitzpatrick acted as national trial counsel for General Electric in disputes arising from its gadolinium-based contrast agent, Omniscan.

Winston & Strawn LLP is best regarded for its representation of Pfizer’s subsidiaries. Dan Webb and John Moss acted for Wyeth and Pharmacia & Upjohn in hormone therapy litigation encompassing 10,000 personal injury claims, arising from patients’ use of Prempro, Premarin, and Provera. Nathan Hoffman won a significant federal court trial for Wyeth Pharmaceutical, clearing its client of any liability in a hormone therapy case. Abbott Laboratories and Anchen Pharmaceuticals are other key clients. Thomas Quigley heads the practice, which includes newly promoted partner Nicole Wrigley.

Product liability and mass tort defense: toxic tort

Index of tables

  1. Product liability and mass tort defense: toxic tort
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Pittsburgh-based Charles Moellenberg and ‘leading litigator’ Paul Pohl oversee the group at Jones Day, which acts for Sherwin-Williams as national counsel in litigation flowing from the sale of lead paints and pigments. One notable work highlight saw the team obtain class decertification in Illinois, after parents brought claims to recover the cost of children’s blood tests for lead poisoning. Elsewhere, the firm has represented the same client in over 160 personal injury claims in Wisconsin, at both state and federal court levels. Mary Ellen Powers in Washington DC and Houston-based Nancy MacKimm defended IBM in nine property damage and personal injury lawsuits in New York state arising from alleged instances of air pollution and other environmental damaged linked with an old IBM factory. Boston-based Traci Lovitt is one of several advisers to ExxonMobil in a high-profile appeal concerning the alleged presence of methyl tertiary butyl ether in Queens, New York. Other clients include National Semiconductor Corporation and Xcel Energy.

King & Spalding LLP’s ‘premier practice’ is ‘consistently high in quality’ from partners to associates, and has an excellent reputation for matters involving high financial risk and complex precedential issues. This ‘responsive’ and ‘practical’ group advises clients including Halliburton, Akzo Nobel Paints and The Lincoln Electric Company, and has particularly strong teams in California, Georgia and Texas. It is national counsel to Chevron in MTBE litigation brought by various utilities companies, concerning alleged contamination of public drinking water. The ‘outstandingKevin Buster shows an ‘extraordinary knowledge of the law and science’, and ‘understanding of clients’ objectives’. San Francisco-based Peter Strotz is ‘an excellent trial lawyer’ who can ‘think on his feet’ and attracts high praise for building good relationships with judges and juries. Appellate attorney Paul Johnsonwrites with lucidity’ and explains cases to judges in ‘a succinct but clear way to reinforce points’. Strotz and Johnson successfully acted as lead trial counsel to UOP in an asbestos exposure case.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP acts for some of the world’s largest chemicals and materials companies, often serving as lead counsel in major class actions, multi-district litigation, and investigations into product recalls or defects. This ‘highly responsive’ team has a longstanding relationship with BP America, which Richard Godfrey is representing in litigation and government investigations arising from the catastrophic Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Well regarded for its ‘very high quality service’ and ability to ‘handle the most complex matters’, the firm shows an ‘almost military ability’ to deploy resources on a large scale. Kevin Van Wart acted for E.I. Dupont De Nemours & Company in thousands of personal injury claims, following alleged exposure to radiation. In New York, Lee Ann Stevenson is lead liaison counsel for Verizon New York regarding claims brought by workers involved in the reparation and cleaning of Manhattan after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Matthew Regan, Hariklia Karis, Andrew Langan and Wendy Bloom are also recommended.

Arnold & Porter LLP is at the forefront of new public nuisance issues and continues to defend Atlantic Richfield against claims throughout California. The team is also representing the same client in lead pigment litigation and pre-trial motions, and has won a significant number of defense verdicts in state Supreme Courts across the country. Nancy Milburn handles a broad variety of toxic tort cases including lead poisoning, temperature correction and climate change. She recently advised Atlantic Richfield in public liability claims brought by 130 plaintiffs in Pennsylvania alleging exposure to radiation. Proposition 65 litigation is another area of strength for the group, where Trenton Norris is an expert. Philip Curtis and William Voth are names to note in New York.

Strongest in the Northeastern US, Goodwin Procter LLP is ‘excellent’ for defending complex asbestos cases and its attorneys are lauded for ‘excelling in everything clients ask them to do’. CertainTeed Corporation instructed the team to represent it as national coordinating counsel in numerous asbestos personal injury claims. The team also acted for Cumberland Farms and Gulf Oil Limited Partnership in MTBE litigation in New York. CIRCOR International and Arrowood Indemnity are other clients. ‘Marvelous attorney’ Bill Hanlon has ‘exceptional people skills’ and ‘excels at solving complex legal matters in a prompt and cost-effective manner’. The ‘exceptionally good’ Elizabeth Geise in Washington DC is ‘very tenacious’ and hardworking. The team is also ‘responsive’, shows ‘good judgment’ and bills fairly.

Latham & Watkins LLP’s toxic tort group works closely alongside lawyers from the environmental litigation practice, defending major engineering companies, energy sector clients, and manufacturers. Georgia-Pacific instructed Chicago-based Mary Rose Alexander and Karl Lytz in San Francisco to defend it in a $1.5bn CERCLA allocation case concerning polychlorinated biphenyls. Thomas Heiden defended Nalco Company, a water treatment company, in class actions and personal injury claims arising from the use of its dispersant products during the Deepwater Horizon spill. Christine Rolph and Robert Howard are also recommended.

Morgan Lewis has taken a lead role in litigating cases involving asbestos, benzene silica and groundwater contamination. Managing partner James Pagliaro has in-depth experience in harmful exposure cases. With the help of Thomas Sullivan and Kristofor Henning, Pagliaro acted for National Gypsum in litigation concerning the allegedly hazardous nature of its drywall products. Another key instruction for the team saw it act as national coordinating counsel for Sandvik, defending the client against claims brought by former welders who alleged that exposure to welding fumes caused them neurological injury. Proposition 65 law is another area of expertise.

Morrison & Foerster LLP provides ‘the most outstanding legal services’ and leverages the firm’s strong environmental expertise to handle toxic tort litigation. It attracts praise for its expertise in air quality regulation and also represented The Newark Group in Resource Conservation and Recovery Act litigation, helping achieve an environmental cleanup injunction for the cleanup of an industrial area in California. Other clients include ExxonMobil and Del Monte. Peter Hsiao is ‘outstanding in every way’, ‘never forgets anything’, and has ‘excellent people skills’. Senior toxic tort specialist Michèle Corash is an environmental law expert, as is Robert Falk, who also focuses on Proposition 65 cases.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP attracts praise for its representation of The Dow Chemical Company and its subsidiaries. Commercial litigator Peter Bicks and James Stengel, who is the team’s go-to adviser for mass tort defense, recently defended the client in a multiple plaintiff mass tort case that alleged exposure to chemicals in float-sink testing. Siobhan Handley represented the same client in a dispute with a water authority concerning the alleged contamination of soil and groundwater near its 300 wells. Another notable mandate saw the team act as national coordinating counsel for Union Carbide in all of its asbestos-related personal injury litigation. New York-based Laurie Strauch Weiss heads the practice, which also notably includes Christopher Vejnoska in San Francisco.

Reed Smith LLP represents a variety of utility companies, manufacturers and pharmaceuticals companies in cases concerning allegedly harmful substances across the US. Philadelphia-based Marilyn Heffley and William McDonough represented Sunoco as national counsel in product liability litigation concerning asbestos and benzene. Practice head John Hooper acted as national coordinating counsel in leading the defense of Mine Safety Appliances in thousands of asbestos and silica cases. Johnson Controls is another client of the firm in asbestos litigation, and Brett McClure has defended BASF against wrongful death and negligence claims concerning certain chemical substances. Other notable clients include the Product Liability Advisory Counsel and York International Corporation.

Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP does ‘a tremendously effective job’ in complex litigation, and is particularly recommended for defending clients in Superfund cases and third-party environmental liabilities, where team members ‘keep clients fully informed’ and ‘effectively respond to attacks by third-party plaintiffs’. Mark Anstoetter leads this ‘extremely responsive’ practice, which takes a ‘focused’ and ‘effective’ approach to appeals, and is ‘efficient’ and ‘practical’ in its management of cases. Miami-based Thomas Sherouse recently represented DuPont in a toxic tort case concerning Benlate fungicide. The practice also defended Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company in personal injury lawsuits concerning alleged exposure to hexavalent chromium. ‘Terrific litigator’ David Erickson ‘keeps an eye on the real issues’ and controls costs effectively.

Sidley Austin LLP advises major energy companies and chemicals producers in mass tort and class action litigation over contamination, harmful exposure and remediation. David Buente and Timothy Webster were part of a team that advised Coronet Industries on a mass joinder toxic tort suit in state court in Florida. Robert Olian, William Dickett continued to represent BP in state and federal court enforcement litigation under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act with regard to alleged contamination at a refinery in Illinois. Duke Energy and General Electric are other notable clients.

John Beisner is the key figure in Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP’s practice, which represents a range of manufacturers in mass torts across the country. Lincoln Electric instructed the team to represent it as lead counsel in federal multi-district litigation claims brought by parties who allegedly incurred injuries after inhaling manganese.

Cleveland-based Jeffrey Healy heads Tucker Ellis & West’s ‘responsive’ and ‘very cost effective’ team, which is praised for building ‘trusting relationships’. The practice regularly wins instructions as national and local counsel in asbestos litigation and is, for example, local counsel to Invensys in asbestos litigation across California. American Optical continues to instruct the team in cases concerning silica, coal dust and other potentially hazardous substances. Jonathan Cooper does ‘an excellent job of monitoring the pulse’, and counsel Frank Garritano is a ‘very strong’, ‘effective advocate’.

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s ‘smart’ and ‘practical’ group is noted for its ‘deep bench’ of ‘good trial lawyers’. It represents clients in the energy sector in cases involving environmental exposure and benzene contamination cases. David Cohen continued to lead advice to the Welding Rod Industry Defense Group during lengthy litigation concerning welding rod fumes. Union Carbide has instructed the group in asbestos litigation, and ExxonMobil often seeks advice in toxic exposure disputes. Tynan Buthod oversees this ‘very responsive’ group, which also includes highly recommended trial lawyer Kevin Jordan.

Dechert LLP lost a key figure when Sean Wajert joined Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP in April 2012. However, the team retained involvement in some key toxic tort litigation on the West Coast. William Oxley recently represented Union Carbide in asbestos liability litigation across California, helping to achieve favorable settlements for his client.

Tampa-based David Weinstein chairs the team at Greenberg Traurig LLP, which handles a range of novel toxic tort litigation and environmental proceedings, spanning wrongful death and personal injury claims to first-party permit appeals and enforcement of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act. The team has an excellent relationship with PH Glatfelter Company, which it defended before the US District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin against a $45m claim for costs following a prior consent decree. The firm also acted as lead counsel to PH Glatfelter Company in a Superfund case concerning the presence of PCBs in a river and tributary in Wisconsin. The team also defended Mosaic Fertilizer in a putative class action after 65 million gallons of polluted water escaped from one of the client’s facilities into Hillsborough Bay. El Paso Natural Gas and Coronet Industries are also clients.

New York-based Robb Patryk co-chairs the team at Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP alongside highly experienced managing partner Theodore Mayer. The practice ably defends clients in complex mass toxic tort litigation relating to petroleum products, asbestos and specialty chemicals. Notable instructions included advising Chemtall in a class action concerning polyacrylamide; and defending Chemical Specialties in class actions and individual cases involving wood treated with chromated copper arsenate.

Mayer Brown’s ‘incredibly responsive’ team is ‘highly knowledgeable’ on the substantive areas of toxic tort law, and is praised for its ‘excellent’ representation at both at trial and appellate level as well as its ‘well-reasoned’ advice and ‘good value’. Michael Olsen and Daniel Ring continue to represent Union Carbide and Amchem Products as co-national counsel in asbestos litigation, largely concerning its Bakelite product. The team also defended NXP Semiconductors USA and Philips Electronics North America in litigation brought by former employees of Signetics Corporation concerning alleged exposure to toxic chemicals and substances. Henninger Bullock heads the practice.

Michael Pope leads McDermott Will & Emery LLP’s ‘cost-effective’ and ‘knowledgeable’ team, which attracts praise for its handling of personal injury claims across the country arising from toxic products, and its team members ‘go above and beyond the call of duty’. Celebrated for providing ‘sound and proactive guidance’, the team is national coordinating counsel to Honeywell International in personal injury and wrongful death claims arising from toxins. Miami-based Anthony Upshaw is a highly recommended trial attorney in product liability litigation, and, in Chicago, ‘excellent lawyer’ Geoffrey Vance is ‘very good at dealing with difficult situations and difficult lawyers’.

McGuireWoods LLP has a broad toxic tort practice, but one with particular specialist expertise in litigation concerning asbestos, lead paint, benzene and solvents. Practice head Steven Williams attracts particular praise for defending large corporates in novel public nuisance litigation. He continues to defend E.I. du Pont de Nemours and Company as national coordinating and trial counsel in lead paint litigation. Universal Corp instructed the team to defend it against actions brought by the families of 87 Argentine children concerning alleged exposure to harmful herbicides and pesticides that caused birth defects. Samuel Tarry is assisting CSX Transportation in bringing RICO and common law claims against two lawyers concerning a plan to mount allegedly fraudulent asbestos claims.

Nixon Peabody LLP focuses on health effects litigation, and advises clients ranging from the producers of consumer products to petrochemicals. Ford Motor Company instructed the team to act in a number of key toxic tort cases regarding alleged exposure to asbestos, benzene and zinc. Boston-based Samuel Goldblatt recently represented Cummins in consolidated litigation brought by New York bus workers alleging harmful effects from diesel exhaust fumes. New York-based Joseph Ortego is an excellent trial attorney, as is Barbara Lukeman, who has recently focused on pesticide cases. Ronald Lopez and Vivian Quinn are also recommended.

Securities: shareholder litigation

Index of tables

  1. Securities: shareholder litigation
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, ‘the best legal firm we have ever used’, represents corporate and financial institutional defendants, and their officers and directors, in class and large individual securities litigation. The firm’s lawyers have appeared in leading roles in headline securities actions including Enron Vivendi, Xerox and AIG. Key client attractions include ‘effective, collegial teamwork’ nationally and internationally, superb response times, and access to ‘the sharpest, brightest legal minds around’. New York-based, the group houses a wealth of experienced talent, which was expanded by two internal promotions to partner during 2012. Also, Sandra Goldstein has taken over from Richard Clary as the firm’s head of litigation. Cravath’s chairman Evan Chesler is an outstanding litigator currently defending the Alcoa board of directors in connection with shareholder derivative actions pending in the Pennsylvania courts. Chesler is also working with litigation department managing partner Robert Baron and Daniel Slifkin, a very strong litigator who also handles complex international arbitrations, to act as national coordinating counsel for JPMorgan Chase in extensive residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) litigation which includes approximately 30 separate lawsuits pending in state and federal courts throughout the USA. Nominated by clients as a younger partner destined for the top, Lauren Moskowitz acted for Credit Suisse as national coordinating counsel in more than 40 lawsuits filed in state and federal courts across the country relating to RMBS securities.

Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP’s 35-partner litigation group, chaired by Carey Dunne, houses an elite cadre of lawyers who are ‘wonderful deep thinkers, very creative problem solvers, and always six steps ahead’. The firm’s clients include leading financial institutions and corporations, auditors and officers and directors. The firm acts in litigation and securities enforcement and compliance matters at the highest level and continues to work through the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. Clients comment on ‘top level work and results’, ‘high-level service and responsiveness’, and ‘really smart lawyers who are a pleasure to deal with’. In June 2012, Lawrence Portnoy and Edmund Polubinski, who ‘gets the job done and communicates really well and often’, were granted a defendant’s motion to dismiss by the US District Court of New Hampshire of a major securities fraud class action for clients CVS Caremark and three former senior CVS executives. James Rouhandeh and Charles Duggan won one of 2012’s key instructions when the firm was appointed to defend each of the 33 underwriters, including Barclays Capital, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan Securities against various securities law claims brought by Facebook shareholders in more than thirty putative class actions following the 2012 Facebook IPO. Clients also recommend ‘creative problem solver’ James Windels. Clients include Credit Suisse, ExxonMobil, E*TRADE and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP is ‘superb, truly excellent - a lot of law firms have one or two good litigators, but it is unique - the depth of talent is unmatched’. The firm had an impressive 2012; for just one client, Citigroup, the run of successes included a multibillion-dollar victory against ADIA, and the dismissal of claims brought by Norway’s Terra Securities and Italy’s Banca Carige. Brad Karp, the firm’s chair, is ‘a superb relationship manager, and an excellent lawyer’ who has established a culture of ‘extreme attention to detail and effective junior lawyer support which produces far fewer errors than elsewhere’. The group, co-chaired by Charles Davidow, Daniel Kramer and Richard Rosen currently numbers 23 partners and 140 lawyers. The breadth of the securities practice is underlined by the firm’s defense of Merck and Schering-Plough in defending claims of breach of fiduciary duty and ERISA violations by investors in connection with a stock price drop following study results for the cholesterol-lowering drug Vytorin. Client recommended attorneys include Bruce Birenboim and Susanna Buergel, ‘a secret weapon - unbelievably good’, who was a key member of the team which secured a highly favorable result for Citigroup in a long running putative class action filed on behalf of purchasers of Citigroup common stock, when the claim was narrowed down to a negotiated settlement of some $590m.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP, ‘one of the handful of firms you can go to with confidence’, continues to represent defendants in virtually every major litigation arising from the financial crisis. The securities/shareholder litigation group has also recently been instructed by JPMorgan Chase to defend all individual and putative class actions alleging conspiracy to set the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) interest rate to their own advantage between 2005 and 2010. The 20-partner team is substantially based in New York, with a smaller team on the West Coast, principally in Palo Alto. The group is co-chaired by Paul Curnin who, as well as being a highly skilled litigator, ‘has a singular ability to bring calm to a boardroom in difficult situations’, and Peter Kazanoff, ‘terrific at helping clients, he clears the issues down to those that really count’. Paul Gluckow is also recommended. Clients include Deutsche Bank, a recent win, Morgan Stanley, and ZelnickMedia. The firm is arguably the leader in the private equity sector, in which litigation has been conducted for leaders including Apax Partners, First Reserve and Hellman & Friedman. In mid-2012, five Blackstone funds appointed highly respected Bruce Angiolillo and Jonathan Youngwood, ‘really top notch and heading for a very prominent career’, to defend four putative securities class actions alleging fraudulent investor inducement in connection with Kosmos Energy.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP’s ‘highly commercial’ shareholder/securities litigation group handles crucial, bet-the-company securities matters for many of the world’s largest financial institutions, and also for a diverse group of public companies, directors and officers worldwide. Led from New York by Jay Kasner, most group partners are located on the East Coast with representation on the West Coast and in Texas. Partners singled out for client commendation include Susan Saltzstein, and Charles Schwartz who is ‘deft with dealing with corporate boards’. Colleen Mahoney heads the securities enforcement and compliance practice and is a valued advisor in the numerous cases which involve simultaneous SEC investigation and shareholder litigation. In a busy 2012 for the firm, Boston-based and highly recommended James Carroll represented Roth Capital Partners to secure the dismissal in the District of Massachusetts Court of a putative securities class action, arising out of Roth’s role as the underwriter in an offering of common stock by Princeton Review. In another representative instruction Jay Kasner and Scott Musoff from New York joined with Washington DC-housed Jennifer Spaziano, ‘a work horse - dedicated and smart’, to defend Computer Sciences Corporation and certain directors in a securities class action complaint and related shareholder derivative litigation filed in the Eastern District of Virginia. The firm has acted for Permira Advisers, Sprint Nextel, WilmingtonTrust and Research in Motion.

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP has ‘tremendous expertise in US securities law, familiarity with the Federal Courts, and superior strategies and written advocacy’. The securities litigation group is co-ordinated from New York by Robert Giuffra, an ‘excellent litigator, creative, and brilliant when presenting a case in court’. It is one of the leaders in financial sector litigation with a blue chip client list including Goldman Sachs, UBS, Barclays, JPMorgan and Moody’s. Well co-ordinated nationwide, with ‘very good response times’, the group quickly brings together the teams required for the largest and most challenging instructions. Robert Giuffra heads the five partner, multi-office team serving as lead counsel to 18 of the world’s leading financial institutions in their challenge to MBIA’s February 2009 restructuring of MBIA Insurance. Among other ‘stand-out practitioners, head and shoulders above others’, are New York’s Richard Pepperman, and Washington DC-based Daryl Libow, who is representing BP and its directors in federal securities fraud and ERISA litigation relating to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill, and recently secured dismissal of the derivative litigation against BP’s directors. Also in New York Richard Klapperthe firm’s dean’, Suhana Han, ‘very well organized - gives structured advice with oversight on all relevant issues’, and Sharon Nelles who, with Diane McGimsey from Los Angeles represented Standard Chartered Bank in cases involving claims brought by customers who lost money invested in Madoff feeder funds.

Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP’s securities litigation group is ‘excellent - some of the junior partners in particular are very hard working and smart’. The firm’s established reputation for handling complex technical cases continues to attract key mandates, such as the representation of Morgan Stanley, Deutsche Bank Securities and Jefferies & Company, the underwriters of a stock offering by American Superconductor, in a shareholder class action alleging material misrepresentation and omissions from financial statements. Clients consistently recommend joint head of group Gregory Markel, ‘a superb lawyer - a terrific elder statesman who carries great credibility’. Markel is working with Martin Seidel, ‘excellent, and a pleasure to work with’, representing the CEO and chairman of Quest Software in shareholder litigation alleging breach of fiduciary duty. Other attorneys highly rated by clients include Jonathan Hoff, who ‘brings a keen commercial awareness to his advice’, recently promoted partner Peter Isajiw, who has ‘terrific attention to detail and subject matter knowledge’, and Jason Halper who ‘brings a very contemplative and calming approach’.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP’s New York-centered securities litigation group acts for numerous major financial institutions and corporations in securities matters. In the financial sector, the firm continues to play a leading role in matters relating to the collapse of Lehman Brothers and arising from the Madoff fraud, winning four court victories in Madoff-related matters in the past year. Mitchell Lowenthal and David Brodsky are key members of the team representing over 40 financial institutions, including Bank of America, Caja Madrid, Citigroup, HSBC, ING, and Wells Fargo, in class and individual securities actions arising out of the collapse of Lehman Brothers. Lewis Liman, who has represented numerous public companies, reached agreement on behalf of IMAX in a class action alleging improper revenue recognition on theater system installations. Jennifer Kennedy Park is currently representing Citigroup in a Securities Act class action involving mortgage pass-through certificates, in which she has won the dismissal of claims against 16 of the 18 offerings at issue. Thomas Moloney is highly recommended and ranks as a leader in derivatives litigation.

Latham & Watkins LLP provides ‘better value in litigation than the other large international firms’. The firm’s US national securities litigation practice, which spans eight offices, is co-chaired by William Baker in Washington DC, Patrick Gibbs in Silicon Valley and Jeff Hammel in New York. One client rates the team as ‘simply the best complex litigation group I’ve ever worked with - and I’ve worked with several of the most visible practices in New York and worldwide’. The firm has built a significant share of the crossover market between securities class actions and auditor’s liability; it acts for all four of the major accounting firms and achieved impressive results for Ernst & Young and Deloitte in securities class actions related to the first and second-largest bank failures in US history - Washington Mutual Bank and IndyMac Bancorp. ‘Great team leaderJeff Hammel in New York and ‘litigation geniusPeter Wald from San Francisco are representing SLM Corporation (Sallie Mae), the educational loan originator, and certain of its senior executives, in a securities class action alleging, inter alia, misleading disclosures and accounting relating to Sallie Mae’s student loan portfolio.

Shearman & Sterling LLP’s securities litigation group, is ‘a very strong team which delivers top-quality advice’. Led from New York by Adam Hakki, ‘a great lawyer with a practical bent that is somewhat rare‘, the group represents both banks and corporations in the defense of securities claims. The firm currently acts as national counsel to Countrywide Financial in numerous cases with a total docket value of $19bn being pursued nationwide by institutional purchasers of private-label residential mortgage-backed securities. The firm’s well developed international network, has stimulated a flow of instructions from defendant Chinese companies, which the ‘astute and highly commercialJerome Fortinsky, leader of the Chinese litigation practice has developed. Representative Chinese corporate clients include China Electric Motor, JinkoSolar Holding and China Media Express. The niche has developed, to a lesser extent, into a wider practice where Chinese companies are involved; Adam Hakki is representing Credit Suisse and Merrill Lynch as underwriters in a securities class action involving Sino-Forest, a Chinese issuer that has filed for bankruptcy.

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, ‘a fantastic firm’, has a significant market share in high-stakes securities litigation. Lawrence Pedowitz heads the white-collar and regulatory practice group. The firm is smaller than most of its rivals, but the quality of the legal talent on offer is second to none. Experts in securities actions include George Conway, who, acting for National Australia Bank, was instrumental in the precedent "Morrison decision". Shareholder litigation arising from mergers and acquisitions is a specialist area of expertise in which Eric Roth is highly recommended. In a representative instruction, John Savarese led for JPMorgan Chase in the $19bn litigation brought against it by the trustee for the liquidation of Bernard Madoff’s failed firm; he managed to remove the case from bankruptcy court to federal district court and have the majority of claims dismissed.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP’s securities litigation group is led from New York by the experienced duo Joseph Allerhand and former federal prosecutor Jonathan Polkes. The latest recruit, Christopher Garcia was previously chief of the Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force in the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. Garcia joined with fellow New York partners Greg Danilow and Paul Dutka for the final stages of litigation involving General Electric and its senior officers; the Weil team won the dismissal, with prejudice, of two federal securities class actions. The firm was appointed nationwide lead counsel by AIG in connection with numerous shareholder, derivative and ERISA litigations, running to tens of billions of dollars, stemming from subprime losses and the federal rescue. Client recommended attorneys include co-chair of global litigation James Quinn and John Neuwirth, who is representing Providence Equity in shareholder class action litigation arising out of Providence’s $1.64bn acquisition of Blackboard.

WilmerHale provides ‘superior levels of service response time, business acumen, securities law expertise, and strength and depth of team’. The securities litigation group frequently works with the Washington DC securities enforcement practice led by William McLucas. The firm’s broad clientele includes accounting firms, financial services companies, hedge funds, and broker-dealers, as well as their managers, officers and directors. Lawyers who bridge the two groups include Andrew Weissman who ‘does a fantastic job leading his team of deep and experienced litigators’, and John Valentine, ‘a brilliant guy who does a fantastic job of preparing his clients for depositions, testimonies, etc’. On the West Coast, Jonathan Shapiro in Palo Alto, combines a regulatory and litigation practice; he is currently representing a leading venture capital firm in connection with an SEC inquiry regarding the distribution and disposition of large equity positions following IPOs of top social networking and other internet companies. Shapiro also successfully defended a federal securities fraud class action involving Thornburg Mortgage.

Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP made a rare lateral hire, Herbert Washer, who joined from Shearman & Sterling LLP in June 2012. Well connected with financial institutions including Credit Suisse, and Deutsche Bank, the firm is well placed to take market share in a fee-pressured market which is pushing banks toward smaller, high-quality, firms. Its senior litigators include the highly esteemed Floyd Abrams who, with Charles Gilman and Adam Zurofsky, has been successfully representing McGraw-Hill and its Standard & Poors (S&P) subsidiary in extensive national litigation arising from S&P’s ratings of securities backed by subprime mortgages. Thomas Kavaler is heading the defense team for Household International and certain of its former officers in a significant securities fraud class action, and one of only a handful to be tried since the enactment of the PSLRA.

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP has ‘a great team of litigators - totally professional and client-oriented’. The securities litigation group is co-chaired by New York’s Edwin Schallert and Washington DC-based Colby Smith, who achieved the dismissal of securities claims against Russian mining and metals company Mechel. The group has excellent cross-border case management and has a strong following of both national and international corporations and financial institutions. Expertise in the insurance sector is particularly well-developed; clients include MetLife, which New York’s Maeve O’Connor has represented in numerous securities class actions and derivative suits concerning accounting practices for unclaimed life insurance benefits. Andrew Ceresney who ‘never misses an issue, turns out outstanding work product, and manages to project a sense of gravitas well beyond his age’, is one of several partners who combines SEC investigation expertise with securities litigation. Clients also recommend Gary Kubek.

The New York-based team at Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLPprovides excellent service - it gives great advice, on both legal and practical issues’. The securities litigation group acts for major financial institutions and has a significant hedge fund practice. Douglas Flaum worked with Israel David, ‘a brilliant lawyer with a full command of the law’ to secure victory on behalf of Wells Fargo, Wachovia Corporation and Wachovia’s former officers and directors in class action cases with a total exposure exceeding £100bn. Litigation chair William McGuinness, ‘very smartDavid Hennes, and Stephanie Goldstein, ‘extremely responsive - the quality of her work is unparalleled’, won a precedent case before the United State Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit which affirmed the defeat of class certification in a securities class action involving some $9bn of residential mortgage-backed securities on behalf of Goldman Sachs, UBS and Citigroup.

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP’s nationwide practice is co-ordinated by joint chairs Thad Davis in San Francisco, Meryl Young in Orange County and Jonathan Dickey and Robert Serio, both in New York. A strong financial sector practice, and a solid corporate following, is extended by a reputation for auditor and law firm representation. Key recent mandates include the defense of Wal-Mart and its directors and officers in civil litigation filed across the country by shareholders relating to alleged corruption in Mexico, and appointment by UBS in numerous class action lawsuits and individual actions alleging that it and other banks unlawfully manipulated LIBOR and other benchmark rates. Lawrence Zweifach in New York and Dean Kitchens in Los Angeles are recommended.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP achieved a significant victory for the financial sector when Christopher Landau from the Washington DC office appeared before the Supreme Court in Credit Suisse v Simmonds on behalf of client Morgan Stanley and obtained a decision that confirmed the statutory two-year time limit for filing actions under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The securities litigation group is some 50 partners strong, located one third in New York, and the remainder nationwide. Clients comment on ‘very good lawyers, and pleasant people to work with’, and ‘we’re always impressed by the industry knowledge, we get practical advice not maybes’. In New York, Andrew Clubok, ‘an excellent strategist, organized and effective’, is leading the team representing Facebook in over three dozen putative class action lawsuits and related shareholder derivative claims relating to Facebook’s IPO. In the same office Peter Doyle is an expert litigator and arbitrator, and Yosef Riemer is also an excellent trial and appellate advocate.

Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy LLP has a very strong regulatory team and the securities litigation handled is frequently linked to investigations by the SEC or other regulatory bodies. James Benedict heads the practice and, with vice chair Scott Edelman, takes credit for shaping ‘a very efficient litigation department which compares favorably to most big firms’. The diverse practice, with an excellent following of financial institutions and banks including AXA, Credit Suisse and Citigroup, has built a strong reputation with investment and mutual fund advisors. New York’s Sean Murphy, a leader in the mutual sector, is ‘a wonderful litigator, very articulate, and provides impeccable analysis’. A younger partner destined for the top is David Gelfand currently working with Benedict and Murphy to represent Rabobank, a defendant in various class actions that assert claims arising from the bank’s LIBOR submission process.

O’Melveny & Myers LLP’s 22 partner group divides more or less equally between East and West Coast offices. Washington-based Jeffrey Kilduff, ‘a phenomenal lawyer and trusted advisor’, leads a team of ‘thoughtful, business-minded counsel who are active partners with us on all matters’. Kilduff is lead partner in the team’s representation of Fannie Mae in a consolidated securities class action case alleging that the company knowingly misrepresented Fannie Mae’s capital condition to investors. The group, with a Beijing resident partner, has achieved an impressive share of the wave of litigation engulfing China-based US-listed companies. In New York Jonathan Rosenberg is ‘very smart and very good at managing a large team’, and in Bradley Butwin there is ‘no better litigator on the planet in my opinion - we never lost a case’. In Washington DC, Robert Stern is ‘very smart and capable’.

Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP ranks as America’s preeminent plaintiff-side firm in securities litigation and as such is difficult to position in a market dominated by defense firms. Despite ‘an aggressive approach’ the firm garners respect from opponents, and impressive support from clients who find ‘excellent overall levels of service’, and ‘diligent, responsive, intelligent and creative lawyers who are skilled advocates as well’, and ‘exceptionally strong bench strength with task allocation to the appropriate level of lawyer in an efficient and cost-effective manner’. The practice is co-chaired by Philippe Selendy in New York and, in Los Angeles, Harry Olivar who ‘in addition to being an excellent lawyer, is very practical and has excellent judgment’. Client commended are, in New York, insurance sector specialist Jennifer Barrett for ‘industry knowledge, responsiveness and business acumen’, in Los Angeles, Molly Stephens for ‘immediate responsiveness, advocacy, business acumen, and rapport with opponents’, and ‘the terrific’ founding partner John Quinn. Representative clients include monoline insurers, including Assured and MBIA, Pitney-Bowes and Vivendi/Universal.

Sidley Austin LLPis among the top law firms in the country - its lawyers are smart, strategic, efficient, creative, thorough and professional’. Securities litigation group lawyers are housed in offices nationwide; Chicago takes the lead in issuer cases and New York tends to take financial services instructions. The firm has a strong regulatory group and a specialist team handles accountancy firm representation. Building on the firm’s solid track record of assisting China-based companies, co-chairs Sara Brody in San Francisco and Robert Pietrzak in New York, are currently representing China Green Agriculture in a consolidated securities class action alleging securities fraud. Highly rated Andrew Stern in New York is leading the defense for Japan’s Norinchukin Bank in consolidated class action suits alleging illegal collusion to manipulate LIBOR. Gary Bendinger provides ‘strategy, presentation style and persuasiveness’, and Hille Sheppard, recommended for directors’ defense, is ‘thorough, analytical and persuasive’.

Vinson & Elkins L.L.P.’s New York-based Steven Paradise co-chairs the firm’s securities litigation and enforcement group with Michael Holmes, who divides his time between Houston and Dallas. The firm has a particularly strong suit in energy sector merger challenge cases within a wider practice which brings in the full range of shareholder class action lawsuits and related litigations for financial institutions, companies, and master partnerships. Karl Stern in Houston is leading the defense for the Black Elk Defendants, comprising Black Elk companies and certain officers and directors, in a suit alleging deliberate stock value dilution. John Wander in Dallas, continues to act for MoneyGram International in a class action and derivative complaint brought by the shareholders alleging, inter alia, breach of fiduciary duty. In New York, Clifford Thaubrings commercial nous to his legal advice’.

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s lawyers ‘have a lot of business and legal acumen, know their subject matter well, staff engagements correctly and do not overbill’. Led from Houston by David Sterling, the group includes New York and Dallas-housed lawyers and ‘provides highly responsive service’. The firm generally acts for defendants but in a significant claimant matter, Washington DC-based Michael Calhoon has been leading the representation of Liberty Media in its securities fraud and breach of warranty suit against Vivendi Universal, and achieved a jury award of €765m; Vivendi was represented by Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP. Robb Voyles, who heads the litigation department from Dallas, is ‘highly organized and knows how to resolve a matter in the most efficient manner’.

Bingham McCutchen LLPstaffs cases sensibly, with leading partners who are truly expert in the field’. The firm provides securities litigation support for financial institutions and insurers, as well as accounting firms such as KPMG and Deloitte. The group is co-chaired from New York by Jeffrey Smith and Jordan Hershman. Hershman worked with Jason Frank to successfully represent Freddie Mac in a multibillion-dollar series of securities class actions and derivative lawsuits, alleging false and misleading statements about exposure in subprime mortgage markets. In the West Coast offices clients recommend Charlene Shimada, ‘a tough lawyer, but a great negotiator at the same time’, John Pernick who ‘delivers multiple and consistent wins’, David Balabanian and Dale Barnes.

Covington & Burling LLP’s ‘overall levels of service, professionalism and skill from the whole team, from senior partner to associate, are outstanding’. New York chair of practice William Phillipshas every quality needed, judgment, decisive and clear decision making, and uncompromising integrity’. The group is instructed by major financial institutions and leading corporations including Johnson & Johnson, and Del Monte. A key recent mandate for San Francisco–based David Bayless and Tammy Albarrán was the successful defense of Charles Schwab’s former chief investment officer of fixed income in a number of related civil actions related to the collapse of a $13.5bn ultra-short bond fund. New York’s Mark Gimbel, ‘outstanding in every area’, is representing AstraZeneca in shareholder litigation arising from its $1.3bn acquisition of Ardea Biosciences.

Dechert LLP’s ‘lawyers are practical, business-focused, litigation savvy and efficient’. The firm’s securities litigation practice is co-chaired by Michael Kichline in Philadelphia, Benjamin Rosenberg in New York, and, in Chicago, David Kistenbroker, the former chairman of Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP’s litigation practice, who brought a strong team to the firm in 2012. Confirming the expansion strategy, 2012 brought ‘super smart’ Linda Goldstein from Covington & Burling LLP. New York’s Andrew Levander, ‘confidence inspiring - a brilliant strategist and excellent trial lawyer’, has led the defense of the independent directors of Lehman Brothers through the numerous litigations initiated in the wake of the collapse of Lehman in September 2008. Adam Wasserman is also recommended. Practice clients include Bank of America, Fidelity Funds and UBS.

Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP has established a very solid defense practice based on a reputation for effective litigation. With a partner-heavy 16 lawyers, the team is not large in New York terms, but Gary Naftalis chairs a ‘well-chosen group, leanly staffed and efficient’ as well as ‘extremely responsive and accessible to clients, and providing first-rate paperwork’. The firm regularly defends issuers, underwriters, lawyers and financial services clients, and individual offers and directors in all types of securities litigation. In representative cases, Michael Dell is leading the defense for Deloitte against the RGH Liquidating Trust’s fraud claims for more than $1bn arising out of the liquidation of Reliance Insurance, and Arthur Aufses is acting for the independent trustees of several mutual funds in a range of investor driven federal court litigations. Alan Friedman is recommended as a highly effective advocate.

Mayer Brown’s New York office houses several key members of a group which has impressive nationwide and global representation. Co-chair Joseph De Simone is ‘knowledgeable, insightful, effective, and focuses on results for the client and not on excessive billing’, and Steven Wolowitz is ‘a seasoned litigator whose experience is invaluable’. De Simone and Richard Spehr, ‘highly intelligent, thorough, personable and tenacious’, are leading the team which represents several senior officers and directors of AIG in high-profile $30bn securities and derivative actions brought against AIG and several other defendants in the Southern District Court of New York and the Delaware Chancery Court. In Houston Mark Manela is ‘extremely smart, tactical, careful, ethical and responsive’, and Chicago-housed Mark McLaughlin’s ‘written work and oral presentation skills are superb’. Associate Bradford Jealous, in New York, is noted by several clients as ‘an outstanding young talent’.

Morrison & Foerster LLP’s ‘quality and efficiency is tremendous, and it is always cost conscious’. The firm’s securities litigation and enforcement group fields 63 partners across 15 offices nationwide, and in Asia and London. Clients comment that the ‘international presence is a clear advantage and asset’. The practice is co-led by Randall Fons in Denver, Joel Haims and Carl Loewenson in New York, and Jordan Eth in San Francisco. Eth and Judson Lobdellwho ‘make a formidable team, their advice is spot on’, are defending the Cooper Companies, and certain current and former officers and directors, in a securities fraud class action and a related shareholder derivative action pending in the Northern District of California. Clients recommend Darryl Rains from Silicon valley, currently defending pharmaceutical company, NeurogesX and certain of its officers in a securities class action case in New York, and the New York head of litigation, Jamie Levitt.

Paul Hastings LLP’s securities litigation and enforcement group ‘staffs teams well - tight and focused’. The group has long experience of defending issuers and their officers and directors in securities class actions and derivative lawsuits and more recently cases involving bankrupt corporations and the complex cross-over between securities and securities law. New York chair Barry Sher worked with a team including Maria Douvas to secure victory for UBS against HSH Nordbank AG, a German landesbank, in a New York state case concerning a synthetic CDO transaction; the decision has been cited as authority on New York law for the interpretation of complex transactions between sophisticated counterparties. Highly recommended in a talented group are Los Angeles-based global head of litigation William Sullivan and, in New York for regulatory matters, Jodi Kleinick and former federal prosecutor Kenneth Breen.

Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP’s ‘diverse and premier client base gives the firm cutting edge institutional knowledge on almost any issue’. The group, although fairly small consistently attracts complex, high-value instructions. The Washington DC-based Howard Schiffman’s ‘industry knowledge and business is top notch’. In New York, fellow co-chair Martin Perschetz is ‘very capable and good to work with’, and Gary Stein is ‘accessible, available, and makes our company his number one priority’. Another client notes, ‘where we employed multiple firms on particular issues, we found it to be superior and have transferred the vast majority of our legal work, particularly in litigation’. Richard Morvillo left for Morvillo Law. Practice clients include National Westminster Bank, Tontine Capital Partners and H&R Block.

DLA Piper provides ‘outstanding service in all regards - the best firm I have ever used’. Perrie Weiner in Los Angeles and Robert Brownlie, ‘expert and highly competent’, in San Diego co-chair the practice. Weiner, working with Beijing resident partner Sammy Fang has recently focused on defending class-action suits and regulatory actions against Chinese-based companies that entered the US markets through reverse mergers. In Los Angeles, Nicolas Morgan, who also handles regulatory matters, recently represented E*TRADE to successfully resolve a number of proceedings concerning customer purchases of auction rate securities, and San Diego partner Shirli Fabbri Weiss is leading the defense of Finisar Corporation and certain directors and officers in shareholder class action and derivative litigation arising from alleged omissions in its SEC filings.

Greenberg Traurig LLP’s securities litigation group is ‘very responsive and knowledgeable, with reasonable rates and billing practices’. The practice, co-chaired by four shareholders including Bradford Kaufman in Palm Beach and Karen Bitar in New York, includes several with prior experience as senior SEC staff lawyers. Miami-based David Coulson represented Stiefel Laboratories, and former officers in shareholder securities fraud and ERISA litigation brought by employee-shareholders who sold stock held in an Employee Stock Bonus Plan for an amount per share substantially less than the acquisition price by GlaxoSmithKline shortly later. In Chicago, Steven Malina is highly recommended by clients; Malina acted for Morgan Stanley in a state court action and Indiana Securities Division investigation regarding financial advice and management services provided - the case settled during 2012.

Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP’s 40 lawyer securities litigation group is mainly housed in the East Coast offices and Chicago, with a three attorney presence in Los Angeles. A ‘strong group with some excellent lawyers’, bench depth has been dented somewhat by the departure of Chicago managing partner David Kistenbroker and a team to Dechert LLP. In New York, Bruce Vanyo and William Regan are very highly rated; they have worked together on several matters for RBC including Sher vs RBC Capital Markets, a complex litigation involving RMB securities and a bankrupt mortgage company. Practice clients include HSBC, iStar Financial and Ormat Technologies.

King & Spalding LLP’s securities litigation group provides ‘excellent support and service’. The 36 partner practice, particularly known for trial capability, has a broad practice with active clients including PricewaterhouseCoopers, Caremark and Morgan Stanley. Atlanta-based Jeffrey Cashdan was instructed in one of the more unusual cases of 2012; he served as lead counsel for The Coca-Cola Company in an action filed in Delaware Court of Chancery claiming that a 1917 stock certificate for Palmer Union Oil Company should be converted to Coca-Cola common stock. Richard Cirillo, in New York, is commended for ‘legal knowledge, business acumen and attentiveness’; Cirillo recently defended a Big Four accounting firm against allegations of audit malpractice, and succeeded in having all claims dismissed and the full award of the counterclaim for unpaid audit fees.

Morgan Lewis continues to recruit to its strong national securities practice, adding experienced partners in Philadelphia and San Francisco. It has broad expertise including issuer defense across a wide range of industries and the financial sector. In a key mandate, Marc Sonnenfeld, Philadelphia-based head of group, is leading a team acting on behalf Hewlett-Packard in multiple cases class and derivative actions alleging that HP’s directors breached their fiduciary duties and wasted corporate assets; the cases are linked to the drop in HP’s stock price following the announcement of a change of direction for the company. Clients include Zimmer Holdings, CardioNet, Citigroup and Danaos Corporation.

Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello unique in that is has the stature of the New York mega-firms but is more nimble and can adapt to unique situations’. The 44 lawyer firm’s regulatory offering is somewhat diminished by the January 2013 defection of a small team to Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP, but the talent on offer remains impressive with Richard Weinberg, who ‘does a fabulous job for his clients’, and Lawrence Iasona true expert in SEC matters’. Judith Mogul who ‘gets great results’ and Edward Spiro, ‘thoughtful, experienced, and reliable’, led the representation of former officers and directors of pharmaceutical company Merck in derivative litigation arising from allegations that disappointing results of clinical drug trials were delayed.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP’s clients are ‘impressed with the group, it is exceptionally good, and perceptive in securities litigation’. With 16 partners dedicated to the practice, the firm is well placed to handle large and complex actions. Practice leader, San Francisco-based Michael Torpey worked with James Kramer to represent NVIDIA and its CEO against allegations that they misled shareholders by failing to account for anticipated costs associated with product defects. New York’s Joseph Frank currently represents a major investment bank in connection with a number of mortgage-backed securities litigations, including cases brought by the Federal Home Loan Bank of Chicago. Kenneth Herzinger, in the San Francisco office, ‘will be among the few top securities litigators nationwide in the next ten years’.

Proskauer Rose LLP’s May 2012 hiring of a four partner group of securities litigation specialists from Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP adds considerable weight to the practice. Co-chaired by Sara Gold, Gregg Mashberg and new arrival Ralph Ferrara the New York-based group has global, as well as national reach. In a recent matter, Jonathan Richman and Ralph Ferrara, who ‘are excellent strategists and analysts’, represented Zurich Insurance Group in a landmark settlement in the Netherlands which resolved the claims of non-US persons who had purchased Converium Holding securities; a global class action pursued in the US Courts excluded non-US stock purchasers, whose claims were approved by the Dutch Courts. Gregg Mashberg, who has led on two Madoff-related litigation matters, is recommended.

Squire Sanders’ head of practice, Cleveland-based Joseph Weinstein, and Amy Brown in Washington DC led the team which successfully represented BB&T Corporation in connection with litigation brought by investors to halt the $5.4bn sale of certain assets of BankAtlantic Bancorp to BB&T. The nationwide practice’s other key members are Mark Dosker in San Francisco and Lewis Murphy, an insurance sector expert, in Miami. Murphy is currently leading the representation of certain former members of the board and officers of a protective body armor company, including the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, in an action that alleges financial loss as, inter alia, the defendants failed to properly supervise Foreign Corrupt Practice Act compliance. Practice clients include Computershare Trust, Oppenheimer and Horizons North.

White & Case LLP regularly advises financial institutions, corporations, sovereign governments and executives and directors in securities litigation including shareholder class actions, shareholder derivative disputes and transactional-related litigation. In recent mandates, global litigation head Glenn Kurtz worked with Douglas Baumstein to lead the representation of Pitney Bowes, its CEO and former CFO, in connection with securities class action alleging fraudulent quarterly projections for the third quarter of 2007; and Scott Hershman secured a victory for TNK-BP Limited and OAO Tyumen Oil, when the New York Supreme Court dismissed Norex Petroleum’s complaint alleging misappropriation of Norex’s interest in a Russian oil company.

Winston & Strawn LLP’s ‘advice is always timely, appropriate and well-reasoned’. The securities litigation group is chaired in New York by the May 2012 hire from Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, James Smith, ‘a very polished, experienced and articulate advocate, able to distill complex issues into simple terms’. Chicago’s Caryn Jacobs leads the firm’s substantial auditor defense practice. Jacobs, with firm chair Dan Webb continues to work on the Navistar International Corporation vs Deloitte & Touche case, which succeeded a federal shareholder class action. In another representative case, New York’s Richard Reinthaler is working with John Schreiber from the Los Angeles office, to represent certain current and former officers and directors of Omnicare in a complex shareholder derivative action alleging, inter alia, breach of fiduciary duty, and unjust enrichment. Also recommended by clients, in Los Angeles Neal Marder is ‘very efficient and smart, he pinpoints the arguments without needing to raise obscure defenses’.

Cohen & Gresser LLP provides ‘the same quality as higher priced firms but without the crazy rates’. The boutique’s strategy is to hire top talent from leading firms, and to deploy them in small effective teams, providing the quality financial institutions expect but at a lower pricing point. Founder partner Larry Gresser is ‘spectacular’, and Mark Cohen and Daniel Tabak ‘really work as a well oiled, cohesive unit start to finish’.

Cooley LLP securities litigation group continued to expand with 2012 seeing the recruitment of Scott Balber, formerly with Chadbourne & Parke LLP to the New York office and Lyle Roberts, formerly with Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP to Washington DC. Roberts recently represented include Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks, in an SEC insider trading case. New York-based William Schwartz is representing Credit Suisse in a multi-district securities fraud case, based in Ohio, relating to the collapse of NCFE, a major health care services finance company. Representative clients include Credit Suisse, Micromet and Smith Micro Software.

Herrick, Feinstein LLP’s attorneys are ‘focused on the resolving the client matter in the most cost effective, diligent manner’. Co-chairs of practice are Therese Doherty whose ‘depth of industry knowledge, and the ferocity with which she represents clients make her my go-to litigator for significant matters’ and Arthur Jakoby, recommended for ‘any matter requiring intelligence, perseverance and litigating and negotiating skills’. The firm focuses on derivatives, futures and securities in civil litigations, including class actions and arbitrations. The firm has been representing two of the Madoff Feeder Funds in the aftermath of the Madoff fraud, and is finalizing two settlements in which over 500 investors will recover all of their Madoff losses plus a small profit.

Richards Kibbe & Orbe LLP’s ‘is defined by an independence of big firm mentality, it thinks through the problem, interprets it and goes and does it’. Securities and enforcement litigation teams divide between New York and Washington. The constructive overlap of practices allows such matters as Michael Mann’s representation of foreign financial trustees in SEC, DOJ, congressional investigations, and related securities litigation relating to trading in US markets to be handled ‘less expensively than the big firms, but to the same standard’. New York-based Brian Fraser is acting for a monoline insurance company in multiple litigations alleging that bond insurers colluded with credit rating agencies.

Seward & Kissel LLP’s litigation practice is comparatively small with just ten partners. However, the firm has managed to attract instructions from some large and sophisticated companies and institutions, which report ‘the highest quality of legal services in high-level securities litigation’. The group has achieved national and international reach. Recent cases include working with WilmerHale attorneys on the successful representation of DryShips, the Athens-based Marshall Islands registered shipping company, in a derivative action decided in the Marshall Islands Supreme Court. Key partners include shipping sector expert Bruce Paulsen, ‘a true professional, organized, prompt and able to take the long view’, and Mark Hyland, ‘the perfect blend of super-sharp litigator and gracious gentleman’.

Supreme Court and appellate

Index of tables

  1. Supreme Court
  2. Appellate
  3. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Bancroft PLLC is the ‘top tier’ vehicle for Supreme Court ‘superstar’ former solicitor general Paul Clement. Clement’s docket speaks for itself: he conducted six arguments in 2012; most famously Clement argued on behalf of the plaintiffs in National Federation of Independent Business v Sebelius about the constitutionality of President Obama’s healthcare reforms. Although this matter resulted in the individual mandate being upheld in a close 5-4 decision, Clement made ‘a phenomenal argument, the best that could have been made, and it showed the variety of his skills’. In 2013, this ‘fabulous advocate’ will represent the guardian in Adoptive Couple v Baby Girl, a high-profile Supreme Court case about adoption rights and child custody. Clement is also active in appellate courts; he argued in favour of the preservation of Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act in the First Circuit; although his argument was ultimately unsuccessful, his skills were widely praised. Clement’s is a ‘conversational style, a style that comes with having had so many arguments’. Founding partner Viet Dinh is another point of contact.

Upper-echelonGibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP fields an enviable Supreme Court team including ‘star lawyers’ Theodore Olson in Washington DC and Los Angeles-based Theodore Boutrous, as well as other superb practitioners such as Miguel Estrada (‘stands in a class by himself’); Mark Perry (known for federal preemption and complex commercial appeals); and Dallas-based former solicitor general of Texas James Ho. Recent highlights in this firm’s active Supreme Court docket include Boutrous’ representation of The Travelers Companies in the Class Action Fairness Act case The Standard Fire Insurance Co v Knowles; Olson’s argument on behalf of the respondent in Kirtsaeng v John Wiley & Sons in relation to extra-jurisdictional aspects of copyright law; and Comcast Corp v Behrend, argued by Estrada on behalf of the petitioner. On the appellate level, the firm is noted for its national presence, and handles landmark matters such as the Ninth Circuit case Perry v Brown, in which instance Olson famously teamed up with David Boies in challenging the constitutionality of gay marriage clause Proposition 8. The firm is also known for major patent appeals such as Thomas Hungar’s successful defense of Facebook in a patent infringement case in the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, as well as complex appeals in the energy industry such as Ho’s recent representation of Oncor Electric Delivery before the Texas Supreme Court.

At Latham & Watkins LLP, practice head Gregory Garre is ‘terrific and his handling of the recent Fisher case was a very big deal’. This refers to US Supreme Court case Fisher v University of Texas at Austin, a very high-profile Fourteenth Amendment matter, in which the Court considered whether the University is permitted to consider race in its undergraduate admissions decisions; Garre argued the case - in which nearly 100 amicus briefs were filed - in October 2012. Garre also secured a big win in $1bn tax case United States v Home Concrete, a landmark instance involving the limits of the government’s ability to collect tax deficiencies. Garre was also successful on behalf of Cory Maples in the bellwether death penalty case Maples v Thomas. The firm’s appellate division has a national footprint: in 2012 it scored a big win on behalf of Ford Motor Company in a significant preemption case in South Carolina Supreme Court; the firm also won a preemption case on behalf of client Clear Channel in the US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. Richard Bress and Scott Ballenger also have superb reputations, and are important components of a firm which ‘had a terrific year following previous great years’.

Known for its provision of ‘unsurpassed quality’, Mayer Brown continues to enjoy market share in the Supreme Court. The firm is particularly known for its deep bench; 45 of its lawyers have collectively argued 225 cases in the Supreme Court. In one recent highlight, a team led by revered practitioner Stephen Shapiro secured a big win on behalf of the claimant in Mayo Collaborative Services v Prometheus Labs; the Court held that Prometheus’ patents failed to claim patentable subject matter. The firm is also handling an increasing amount of securities-related appeals work. The firm represented Siemens in the third circuit ERISA case Shaver v Siemens Corp, a case involving claims for early retirement benefits by former employees; the court entered judgement in respect of all 227 class member plaintiffs in favour of the client. Numerous lawyers from this firm attract praise: Charles Rothfeld is ‘a serious player’ with 28 wins to date in the Court; Timothy Bishop also has ‘an extensive Supreme Court practice’; Andrew Pincus is ‘one of best Supreme Court advocates in the country’ and a ‘brilliant strategist’; Evan Tager, Archis Parasharami, and Donald Falk are ‘outstanding writers, fine oralists, and excellent strategists’. Kevin Ranlett is an ‘extremely thorough researcher and analyst; a future star’.

ExcellentSidley Austin LLP has had a superb year both before the Supreme Court - winning five out of six cases, and scoring a solid result in the sixth - and in the appellate space, with wins in a range of industries including healthcare, energy, and IP. Carter Phillips is a ‘superstar’ whose ‘strength is delivering excellent results’. Phillips recently handled his 100th appeals case; he has also conducted 76 arguments before the US Supreme Court. Phillips’ recent arguments - each of them wins - include: Southern Union Co v United States, a Sixth Amendment case in which the firm represented the plaintiff; FCC v Fox Television Stations, in which the Court decided the defendant client had fallen foul of unconstitutionally vague indecency standards; and Salazar v Ramah Navajo Chapter, a landmark win for the contractual rights of Indian tribes. Appeals-wise, Phillips teamed up with Joseph Guerra - ‘one of the best’ - to represent three former executives of the Purdue Pharma Company in the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit in Friedman v Sebelius, in which it was ruled that the US Department of Health and Human Services had wrongly excluded the firm’s clients from federal healthcare programs; the firm’s regulatory expertise makes it ideal for such instructions. The firm is also pushing hard in the energy space, and recently opened a new office in Houston in order to service an increase in petroleum clients. Mark Haddad is known for healthcare work; Constantine Trela is respected for IP instructions; Peter Keisler is widely well-regarded for energy and environmental work. One client states, ‘you simply cannot get better than this’.

WilmerHale’s ‘excellent in every respect’ Supreme Court offering is built around the ‘thoroughly competent, committed, tenacious, and effective’ Seth Waxman. Waxman argued an impressive six arguments in the US Supreme Court fall term: he successfully represented The Walt Disney Company and its subsidiary ABC in FCC v Fox Television Stations, a case related to the Federal Communications Commission’s broadcast indecency rules. Waxman was active on behalf of Amgen in Amgen v Conn Retirement Plans, a putative securities fraud matter; and also represented the respondents in FTC v Phoebe Putney Health System, Inc, a case which addresses the extent to which the federal antitrust laws apply to decisions of state and local governmental entities under the state-action doctrine. Also recommended is Danielle Spinelli, who is ‘a great lawyer in every sense. She has superb legal acumen, is a very effective oral advocate, and provides an excellent written product’. Spinelli is particularly active in the appellate courts: in 2012 she successfully argued before the Third Circuit on behalf of The Hartford in In re American Capital Equipment (2012), a case involving the validity of a Chapter 11 plan filed by a defunct entity. Paul Wolfson, Daniel Volchok. Mark Fleming, Edward DuMont all have superb reputations as part of ‘the A-team’.

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is ‘enormously regarded in the community’, and Patricia Millett - who has an impressive reputation - is ‘very effective’. Millet can point to over 30 arguments before the Court such as 2012’s representation of the petitioner in Gonzalez v Thaler, a Sixth Amendment case in which the Court held that a certificate of appealability under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act is mandatory, but not jurisdictional. Other notable Supreme Court arguments by Millett include Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians v David Patchak and Filarsky v Delia. The firm’s appeals group includes a former state appellate court judge and a former long-term assistant to the solicitor general. The firm is also particularly noted for labour appeals, as well as intricate IP and constitutional matters.

Arnold & Porter LLP’s Supreme Court presence is centred on the standout win-loss record of Lisa Blatt who has a ‘superb track record’ and is ‘highly effective’. In April 2013, Blatt argued on the merits on behalf of an adoptive couple in a case involving adoption rights and custody of a child in Adoptive Couple v Baby Girl; in the same term she represented Oklahoma state officials in a water rights dispute with a Texas water agency in Tarrant Regional Water District v Herrmann. At the appeals level, the firm has ‘a national footprint and a great depth of bench’. In addition to Anthony Franze - who is well known for civil racketeer and price-fixing cases, and counsel Dirk Phillips - the firm also draws on the legal skills of Robert Katerberg (highly regarded for First Amendment and for contraception cases) and Christopher Rhee, whose docket includes major securities work and gay marriage cases. The firm is particularly active in the Ninth Circuit and Federal Circuit.

The ‘knowledgeable and efficient’ practice at Hogan Lovells LLP is based around the complementary talents of former acting solicitor general Neal Katyal - who clients ‘think the world of’ - and the highly esteemed Cate Stetson; the pair joint-head the team. The firm represented the petitioners before the Supreme Court in Diane Knox v Service Employees International Union, a First Amendment case about an undisclosed mid-year fee imposed on union members and non-union members. Katyal and Stetson also recently joined forces in representing US Airways on an important ERISA matter. At the appellate level, the firm is known for its ‘bottom up’ approach - the firm’s associates regularly argue appeals - and also for the scope of its work from death penalty matters, to obscure environmental challenges, and nuclear agency instructions. Signature appellate clients include National Port Authority of Liberia, Ford Motor Company and Google.

Jones Day is known for its ‘outstanding people’; the firm’s lawyers ‘really listen, so that they understand the issues and objectives that are important to the client’. The work speaks for itself: this was the only firm to have two lawyers arguing on 2012’s ‘Obamacare’ challenge. The firm’s lawyers were successful on both counts it argued: Michael Carvin handled the tax and spending clause argument in DHS v Florida, and Gregory Katsas took the lead on the anti-injunction argument. In 2012, a team led by Michael Fried won another Supreme Court victory on behalf of client Kouichi Taniguchi in Taniguchi v Kan Pacific Saipan, a case about the costs of translating documents. In April 2013, the highly recommended Gregory Castanias was retained by Myriad Genetics to argue The Association for Molecular Pathology v United States Patent and Trademark Office, where the Court will consider fundamental issues of patent eligibility of isolated DNA molecules. The firm also fields an impressive bench: since 2004, 14 lawyers from the firm have argued 23 arguments before the Court. The firm is also impressive on the appellate front, with Noel Francisco’s government regulatory practice particularly well regarded. Francisco secured a favourable ruling on behalf of Reynolds Tobacco, after the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit ruled that the US Food and Drug Administration’s proposed graphic warning labels on cigarette packs are unconstitutional. Castanias is also known for a strong Federal Circuit-oriented practice. Practice head Glen Nager is ‘outstanding as a high-level strategist and counselor, and a technically excellent attorney’.

At ‘fabulousKellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd, Evans & Figel, P.L.L.C. David Frederick is ‘the predominant force’. In October 2012, Frederick argued Fane Lozman v The City of Riviera Beach, Florida in which the firm represents the City of Riviera Beach in respect of its claims that Lozman’s houseboat was a "vessel" and thereby subject to federal maritime jurisdiction; this was Frederick’s 38th argument before the Court. Frederick also achieved a significant 9-0 win in January 2012 in Pacific Operators Offshore, LLP v Valladolid on behalf of Luisa Valladolid; the Court ruled the client was entitled to compensation after her husband died in a forklift truck accident at a site owned by Pacific. The firm also litigates extensively at the appellate level, where it is particularly well known for patent and telecommunications appeals. Name partner Mark Hansen is a ‘first-rate lawyer, a deep thinker, excellent writer and gifted oral advocate and cross-examiner of witnesses’.

At Kirkland & Ellis LLP, Christopher Landau is ‘a very smart and a very capable appellate advocate’. The firm recently won two significant Supreme Court victories. In Credit Suisse Securities v Simmonds, Landau led in briefing and arguing the case on behalf of underwriters which led to a favourable ruling restoring equitable tolling limits. In CompuCredit Corp v Greenwood, Michael McConnell’s argument led to a successful 8-1 verdict in favour of client CompuCredit Holdings Corporation, a ruling which established the enforceability of an important arbitration agreement. The firm is also active nationally in appeals courts. Jay Lefkowitz is noted for his extensive pharmaceuticals practice; a team led by Edwin U also won a notable victory in 2012 for Teva Pharmaceuticals’ Barr Laboratories Unit in a California antitrust class action, a rare reversal of a prior precedent on a constitutional matter.

O’Melveny & Myers LLP conducts an eclectic mix of work before the US Supreme Court. Jonathan Hacker - ‘very strong, great written product, and very bright’ - recently won a victory in Kurns v Railroad Friction Products Corp on behalf of client Viad, a federal preemption case with potentially significant consequences for preemption of asbestos-related tort claims. The firm also drafted significant briefs - whose reasoning the Court followed in its decision - on behalf of client CompuCredit Corporation, a significant matter concerning the enforceability of agreements to arbitrate federal statutory cause of actions. On the appeals front, the firm secured a significant $2bn reversal on behalf of Ford Motor Company when the Ohio Court of Appeals vacated a prior class action jury verdict brought by Ford authorized truck dealers. The firm also secured a significant verdict on behalf of DC Comics, Warner Bros before the Ninth Circuit in respect of the Superman franchise. This ‘excellent’ firm is also witnessing a trend toward more insurance appeals and financial services-related work.

Solid as can be’, Robbins, Russell, Englert, Orseck, Untereiner & Sauber is particularly well known for the skills of name partners Larry Robbins and Roy Englert, both formerly of the office of the solicitor general; it also has strength in depth with Alan Untereiner and Leif Overvold also attracting praise. The firm was recently granted certiorari in American Trucking Associations v City of Los Angeles, in which the firm’s client is challenging restrictions imposed by the Port of Los Angeles on trucks that transport cargo; Englert will argue the case in 2013. The firm is also active across the country’s appeals courts and is noted for pro bono appeals in the eleventh circuit. The firm recently filed a high-profile amicus brief in support of NFL Players in its Eighth Circuit lockout appeal.

Williams & Connolly LLP is led by ‘awesome’ Kannon Shanmugam who has built on ‘really strong experience in government’ to become ‘a rising star, if not already a star’; Shanmugam is ‘a fantastic lawyer, fantastic advocate and has a great practice group’. The firm is particularly well known for pro bono criminal work before the Court such as 2012’s Smith v Cain, in which the firm succeeded in achieving the vacation of the client’s death sentence; the firm also handled the scope of police authority case Bailey v United States, as well as filing a significant certiorari petition on behalf of Merck. Shanmugam will argue Fourth Amendment matter Maryland v King regarding the constitutionality of DNA testing of arrestees, which will have huge ramifications for arrestees across the country. On the appellate level, the firm is particularly active in the Ninth Circuit; the firm also recently won a Fifth Circuit victory for client Pfizer in Demahy v Schwarz Pharma. Adam Perlman wins praise for his patents practice, on behalf of clients such as Alice Corporation and Eli Lilly & Co.

Covington & Burling LLP’s widely respected Robert Long argued on the first day of the landmark Obamacare case; Long addressed the question of whether the so-called individual mandate was a tax under the constitution, a matter which proved of key importance to the eventual outcome. The firm also submitted a crucial due process brief on behalf of clients CBS Television Network Affiliates and NBC Television Affiliates in Federal Communications Commission v Fox Television Stations. The firm’s appellate practice recently vacated an adverse $200m judgment on behalf of Wells Fargo in the Ninth Circuit, a matter involving overdraft charges. Meanwhile the esteemed Paul Schmidt continues to be successful across numerous circuits on behalf of Hoffman-LaRoche, in litigation arising from allegations that the company’s acne medicine Accutane caused plaintiffs to develop a severe gastrointestinal condition. Patent specialist George Pappas is ‘an excellent lawyer, always well prepared, a man of unquestionable integrity’.

Uniformly excellentJenner & Block LLP is known for its attractive brief-writing, and also for its ‘deep understanding of the client’s business, and how to advance the client’s interests through the appellate process in a cost-effective manner’. In addition to its impressive rate of delivering arguments - the firm has racked up 23 Supreme Court arguments in the last ten terms - it also has a lively amicus practice before the Court. Paul Smith is ‘a first-rate Supreme Court and appellate advocate’; Smith is ‘creative but practical in his approach; he produces written work product of the highest caliber, which is clear, fully supported in law and fact, and rhetorically powerful. He is also a superb oral advocate, able to handle the unexpected and to make superb strategic judgments on his feet’. In one recent highlight, the firm - which is ‘one of the elite appellate practices in DC’ - secured a significant win in the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit when it reinstated Viacom’s $1bn copyright infringement case against YouTube and Google. Other clients include CRST Van Expedited and Dow Chemical Company.

ExcellentKing & Spalding LLP calls on the talents of patents guru Daryl Joseffer, who is the ‘cream of the crop’ of a younger generation of Supreme Court practitioners; Jossefer has ‘already built a successful practice’. The firm’s recent Supreme Court docket includes acting as co-lead counsel with Paul Clement in PPL Montana, LLC v Montana; after securing victory in this matter on behalf of the petitioner, a team led by energy specialist Ashley Parrish has been retained to argue a complex tax matter before the Court. Appeals-wise, the firm is particularly well known for Jossefer’s work in the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, for clients such as McKesson Technologies and Allergan; and for Jeffrey Bucholtz’s FDA and life sciences docket representing clients such as Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America and RJ Reynolds Tobacco.

McDermott Will & Emery LLP’s appeals work spans the Sixth Circuit, major East Coast litigation, and cutting-edge Ninth Circuit instructions. The firm recently represented Static Control Components in the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in respect of its long-running litigation with Lexmark International in which the court held the firm’s client did not infringe Lexmark’s toner cartridge patents. This led to a second ruling reinstating the client’s multimillion-dollar false advertising claims against Lexmark; widely esteemed department head Miller Baker led. The firm is also an active force in the US Supreme Court, particularly on an amicus basis for clients such as the US Chamber of Commerce.

Morgan Lewis’ ‘appellate section is simply at the top level in the country’ according to clients; Dallas-based Allyson Ho particularly attracts praise. In one highlight, a team including Ho, and Los Angeles-based Kathleen Macfarlane Waters and Brian Jazaeri won a victory for JPMorgan Chase in the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, in a RMBS case where the court held that the plaintiff Washington Mutual Bank had no enforceable rights under the agreement and therefore lacked standing to sue. Mid-western labour and employment head Charles Jackson is active in the Seventh Circuit in the ERISA space; and Jonathan Fritts - known for his representation of United States Chamber of Commerce in litigation against National Labour Relations Board - is a serious player in Washington DC. The firm also has a history of merits arguments before the Supreme Court, although Ted Cruz left the firm for the US Senate in 2012.

ExcellentMorrison & Foerster LLP is known for its ‘absolute responsiveness and stellar execution’. Former assistant to the solicitor general Deanne Maynard has argued 13 cases in the US Supreme Court. In April 2012 Maynard argued RadLAX Gateway Hotel LLC v Amalgamated Bank on behalf of Amalgamated Bank, a high-profile bankruptcy case which led to an 8-0 victory for the client, with the Supreme Court holding that secured creditors have the right to ‘credit bid’ in certain circumstances. In one appellate highlight, the firm represented Nuvasive in Neurovision Medical Products v Nuvasive before the Ninth Circuit, scoring a complete reversal of a jury’s $60m trademark on behalf of the client. Brian Matsui is well regarded for patents litigation and for amicus brief writing; Miriam Vogel continues to be very active in state courts in California. This ‘top of the list’ firm’s appeals docket continues to mirror its core strengths in IP, bankruptcy and securities.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP displays momentum in IP instructions, and is now one of the go-to firms for large corporate entities embroiled in the so-called ‘Smartphone wars’; in particular the firm is handling two very important appeals on behalf of Apple against Motorola. Joshua Rosenkranz - described as ‘a Superman’ - is the firm’s most high-profile lawyer, and counts DISH Network, Facebook and Nintendo among his clients. Mark Davies is well known for Federal Circuit appeals work clients such as DowAgro Sciences. The firm is also seeing growth trends in aviation, copyright, and communications law. Other clients include UBS and L3 Communications.

Edward Brill, Mark Harris and Charles Sims are the names to know at ‘impressiveProskauer Rose LLP. In 2012, Harris led on the firm’s co-counsel representation of Corey Hill in Corey A Hill v United States, a significant criminal matter in which the firm convinced the Court by a 5-4 ruling that the Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 applies to all defendants who were sentenced after its enactment. Meanwhile, Sims represented the Football Association Premier League before the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in a landmark copyright infringement case relating to audiovisual clips played on YouTube, securing a reversal on behalf of class plaintiffs which will lead to further proceedings. Other clients include Church of Scientology International and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP.

At Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP, team leader Kathleen Sullivan ‘wins cases’. The firm has made significant gains in its Supreme Court presence, arguing twice for the respondents in Kiobel v Royal Dutch Petroleum, a case about the application of the Alien Tort Statute to corporations. The firm’s appellate practice is growing and national; the firm has strength in the Second Circuit, Ninth Circuit, and has particular momentum in the Federal Patents Circuit. It is also noted for trying large state cases. The firm was recently retained by client Oracle after the firm argued Oracle Corp v SAP AG, successfully winning an unprecedented $1.3bn in damages in respect of copyright infringement. Managing partner John Quinn is also active at the appellate level for client Samsung.

Vinson & Elkins L.L.P.’s revered Marie Yeates made her 100th oral argument in November 2011, and in 2012 successfully handled several major appeals for a major products manufacturer in Texas and Alabama. Yeates also won a significant victory on behalf of The Port of Houston Authority in a $23.4m contractual dispute. Meanwhile Tom Leatherbury made three arguments before the Texas Supreme Court in 2012, including a personal injury case for a trucking company, and a representation on behalf of The Episcopal leadership in the Diocese of Fort Worth, a matter involving church property. Meanwhile, Washington DC-based John Elwood leads the firm’s Supreme Court offering, carrying out amicus briefs on behalf of the Chamber of Commerce and American Farm Bureau.

In 2012, Winston & Strawn LLP’s Jim Hurst and Steffen Johnson won a significant 9-0 victory before the US Supreme Court in Caraco Pharmaceutical Laboratories v Novo Nordisk, in which it was held that the firm’s client could force a correction when the brand submits misleading patent information to the FDA, a decision which is likely to save billions for consumers through lower-priced consumer drugs. The firm is also representing Grant Thornton LLP on an ongoing basis in its mammoth criminal fraud Refco litigation, in which the firm has won a series of victories, including a $2bn dismissal of a suit brought by the Refco litigation trustee. The firm is also experiencing momentum in False Claims Act and securities work, as well as a growth in matters before the Ninth Circuit. William Ferranti was promoted to the partnership in 2012.

Although Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP is best known as a transactional firm, it fields a remarkable team of litigators including firm chairman Evan Chesler, ‘dean of the New York trial barRichard Clary, and the ‘excellentSandra Goldstein; this is a firm well capable of handling major appellate work. The firm is currently representing American Express in multiple putative class actions in the Southern District of New York against allegations that the client had acted unlawfully in respect of credit card arrangements in violation of the Sherman Act. Other clients include Huron Consulting Group, Morgan Stanley and Mylan Inc.

At Dechert LLP, ‘the overall level of service is outstanding’, and the firm is noted for its ‘extremely collaborative and client-focused approach’. The firm is representing Ad Hoc Group of Vitro Noteholders in a complex Fifth Circuit bankruptcy matter involving ancillary proceedings, an injunction and a stay order. Arguably the most notable lawyer in the firm is bankruptcy specialist Eric Brunstad who is ‘superior in every respect’; Brunstad and white-collar and securities litigation specialist Steven Feirson also have experience of conducting arguments before the US Supreme Court. Other clients of this ‘premier’ firm include DHL Express and Pfizer.

Across its 29 offices, Greenberg Traurig LLP provides ‘excellent analysis and guidance’ and teams which are capable of ‘unpacking the opposition’s legal arguments, to demonstrate their flaws’; its approach can lead to ‘extraordinary decisions in favour of the client’. The firm has expertise in state courts work: Scott Bertzyk is well known in the California state court for commercial and real estate appeals; Michael Nicodema is a noted IP appellate specialist; Henry Greenberg is noted for work in Albany; and Gregory Ostfeld conducts numerous appeals in Chicago. In one 2012 highlight, Bertzyk led in the successful representation of LA Pacific Center in which the California Court of Appeal upheld a trial court order affirming a $144m arbitration award in favor of the client. Other clients include Genesis HealthCare Corporation and Citigroup.

Nixon Peabody LLP’s ‘exceedingly able’ David Tennant has a sophisticated niche practice in Indian law work. The firm recently represented Madison and Oneida Counties in Madison County and Oneida County v Oneida Indian Nation of New York, a case which addresses the right of counties to collect certain property taxes imposed on tribally-owned properties; the firm petitioned the Second Circuit for certiorari in November 2012. The firm - which also benefits from Thaddeus Stauber’s art practice - ‘does a fine job’ and is ‘instrumental’ in achieving results. Other clients of this eclectic division include Republic of Hungary and Department of Energy.

Paul Hastings LLP continues to combine its strength in labor and employment law with high-profile pro bono work. The firm is currently representing Carols Martinez Gutierrez in the immigration case Holder v Gutierrez in the Supreme Court of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The Supreme Court will decide whether Martinez Gutierrez, who came to the United States as a child, can use his father’s lawful permanent residence to become eligible for relief from removal from the country. Paul Cane and Stephen Kinnaird are the names to note.

Reed Smith LLP’s ‘excellent’ 18-attorney group is particularly active in the Ninth Circuit, and the importance of the matters it handles there often leads to involvement in Supreme Court matters, particularly on a briefing basis. A 2012 case in point was the firm’s involvement on behalf of Railroad Friction Products in Kurns v Railroad Friction Products Corp, in which the firm drafted the merits brief and also worked closely with co-counsel on strategy. This is a firm in which Paul Fogel and Raymond Cardozo ‘stand out for their legal advocacy and strategic thinking’, which is ‘second to none’. Other clients include Bank of America and Roman Catholic Diocese of Oakland.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP conducts numerous appeals to a ‘very high standard’. The firm recently achieved a very favourable string of results on behalf of the Fidelity family of insurance companies in 15 class actions brought across 12 states, an intricate matter stretching back to February 2008. In another highlight, the firm won a victory for Travelers in a landmark asbestos case in the New York appellate division, in which a summary judgment award of over $420m was affirmed. Team leader Barry Ostrager is ‘a terrific lawyer, and a very strategic thinker’; Mary Kay Vyskocil also has a superb reputation for oral argument.

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP is a financially oriented practice, which is immersed at all levels in bank regulatory matters. Although the firm does not structure itself along strict appellate lines, it frequently finds itself conducting appeals, usually with a securities aspect for flagship clients such as JPMorgan Chase, Barclays and Goldman Sachs. The firm has also seen an uptick in bankruptcy and restructuring work; it was recently instructed by client Fiat in respect of its acquisition of Chrysler, and is also representing Eastman Kodak as a debtor.

Steven Reiss’ team at Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP is ‘excellent’ for appeals work. Reiss is currently representing the European Union on an amicus basis in support of neither party in Supreme Court Alien Tort Statute case Kiobel v Royal Dutch Petroleum. The firm also won a victory on behalf of The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in respect of the client’s liability in connection with the 1993 terrorist attack on the World Trade Centre, in which instance it won a crucial reversal of an adverse jury verdict thus saving the client hundreds of millions of dollars in damages. Former assistant solicitor general for New York State Gregory Silbert is another name to note.

Trade secrets

Index of tables

  1. Trade secrets
  2. Leading lawyers

Leading lawyers

Kirkland & Ellis LLP’s sizeable global network enables it to bring to bear broad trial experience, as well as a track record on high-profile, "bet-the-company" cases. It represents large corporate clients and startups across a range of industry sectors. Joseph Serino, Eric Leon, Mark Rasmussen and Claudia Ray represented TechForward in a claim brought against Best Buy, which involved allegations of misappropriation of trade secrets and projections regarding customer behavior relating to the development of a consumer electronics buyback program. A trial jury found in favor of TechForward, holding Best Buy liable for wilful and malicious misappropriation of trade secrets. In another highlight, Craig Primis, John O’Quinn and Matthew Papez are defending Boeing against claims of unjust enrichment and conversion of intellectual property brought by former business partner Alabama Aircraft Industries.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP regularly acts in high-profile trade secrets cases for a client base that includes Fortune 500 companies, startups and foreign multinationals, and advises clients on strategies to safeguard valuable confidential information and materials. The team recently obtained a $65m settlement for Canadian Pharmaceutical firm Tekmira in a multi-jurisdictional patent, licensing and trade secret dispute against competitor Alnylam Pharmaceuticals involving a $2bn product. The firm also handles forensic investigations. Silicon Valley-based Neil Chaterjee, who co-chairs the firm’s intellectual property group, is recommended.

Under the leadership of global trade secrets practice chair Victoria Cundiff, Paul Hastings LLP’s 12-partner team handles the full spectrum of matters, including assisting clients in the identification of potential issues and successfully obtaining remedies in high-profile cases. In Washington DC, newly appointed partner Carson Sullivan represented a defense contractor in a matter concerning the departure of several high-level employees for a competitor, which involved the enforcement of restrictive covenants in the former employees’ contracts and a claim for trade secret misappropriation against one employee. Palo Alto-based Bradford Newman is also recommended for ‘ensuring clients’ interests come first’.

The lawyers at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP are praised for their ability to ‘customize their vast legal knowledge to specific business needs’. The firm leverages its offices in the US, Germany and Japan to field a team with an international scope that attracts a multinational client base that includes a number of household names. David Quinto, who is recognized for his ‘great litigation management skills’, is defending a Korean garment manufacturer against a claim for fraudulent acquisition of trade secrets by an operator whose factory was acquired by the client. The team also has experience defending clients in criminal cases brought by the US government, and is currently representing a large Chinese steel company against claims by the US government that it knowingly purchased blueprints containing trade secrets regarding manufacturing processes.

Covington & Burling LLP’s 40-attorney practice, which is spread across various practice groups and offices, adopts a multi-disciplinary approach to trade secrets cases. It is co-headed by Kurt Calia, who acts as vice chair of the trade secrets committee of the Intellectual Property Owner’s Association, and Michael Plimack, who chairs the firm’s electronics and information technology industry group. In a reflection of the increasing internationalization of trade secrets issues, the team defended the CEO of Ambow Education Holding in a case filed by Mintel Learning Technology involving computer software used for the purposes of teaching English to students in China. The Superior Court of California granted the motion to quash the claim for lack of personal jurisdiction, and for failure to properly serve the summons.

Keker & Van Nest, L.L.P.’s ‘terrific trial lawyers’ conduct a significant amount of trade secret litigation, and ‘get right to the heart of the issues’. The San Francisco-based firm obtained a favorable settlement for client SBM Site Services in its claim against Ables Services and various former employees, which involved allegations of misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of covenants, and violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. It also benefits from its track record as a criminal defense firm, and acts for a range of clients on civil and criminal trade secret matters across numerous jurisdictions. Highlights included defending an engineer under indictment for attempted economic espionage, a technology firm, and a venture fund company. Key contacts include firm co-founder John Keker and head of trade secrets team Jeff Chanin.

McDermott Will & Emery LLP’s multi-disciplinary approach encompasses disputes over enforcement rights and the implementation of safeguarding mechanisms for trade secrets, as well as a particular strength in assisting clients on the overlapping issues between trade secret misappropriation claims and antitrust law. It also advises clients on the potential trade secret implications of mergers, joint ventures and licensing agreements. Los Angeles-based Eric Hagen represents a diverse set of high-profile clients, including Fortune 500 companies, on trade secret-related matters.

The trade secrets team at Morrison & Foerster LLPdelivers services at the highest level’. Co-led by ‘true expert’ Daniel Westman and respected lawyer Bryan Wilson, the team leverages its wider practice area expertise, principally the IP and employment groups, and continues to act for plaintiffs and defendants in a wide range of employee movement cases. It recently settled a case on favorable terms for the US subsidiary of Australian recruitment specialist NGA.NET, which involved a claim for trade secret misappropriation and breach of non-solicitation provisions brought against it by Monster Government Solutions (MGS) following the hiring by NGA.NET of three former MGS employees and the subsequent award of a recruitment services contract by the US Department of Agriculture. San Francisco-based Arturo Gonzalez is noted for his ‘ability to lay out a brilliant litigation road map’, and Eric Tate draws praise for his ‘ability to manage complex files’.

Darin Snyder heads a 30-lawyer team at O’Melveny & Myers LLP that has the resources to advise defendants and plaintiffs on all trade secrets issues, from investigation to litigation. The team recently showcased its courtroom advocacy skills when it achieved a victory for Botox developer Allergan in a high-profile case against competitor Merz. Allergan was awarded injunctive relief blocking the distribution of rival product Xeomin when it was found that Merz had misappropriated confidential Allergan materials by hiring an Allergan sales representative. Snyder, who also chairs the intellectual property and technology practice, is recognized for his wide-ranging expertise.

Proskauer Rose LLP’s ‘go-to’ trade secrets team ‘can draw upon a deep bench of partners to provide clients the best advice within the US and abroad’. ‘Excellent’ founder and co-head of the trade secrets group Steven Kayman has particular experience in the movement of employees between competitors, and the drafting and negotiation of restrictive covenants. ‘Knowledgeable and excellent litigatorJohn Barry is sought out for his expert advice on hiring executives and other employees subject to non-compete agreements; he is handling 14 non-compete matters for client Sientra filed against 15 of its employees by Mentor Worldwide. The team also has notable strength in the movement of private equity executives, and in 2012 acted for Access Securities in allegations of trade secret misappropriation arising out of its recruitment of three brokers previously at Williams Trading.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP handles the full gamut of trade secrets work. The breadth of the practice’s client base is representative of its wide-ranging capabilities, which has recently seen it act for a medical services company, a defense contractor and a modeling agency. It is serving as national coordinating counsel for Alliant Insurance Services in three lawsuits pending in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles, all involving allegations by Aon of trade secrets misappropriation, aiding and abetting breaches of fiduciary duty, and conspiracy relating to the departure of 60 former Aon employees to Alliant. In the Los Angeles case, it successfully obtained a partial summary judgment rejecting Aon’s attempt to enforce employee covenants. On the advisory side, the team is assisting a large utility firm to minimize misappropriation risks in its joint venture with a Chinese counterpart. Silicon Valley-based Christopher Cox is recognized for his thought leadership on the trade secrets issues arising out of employee mobility.

Boutique trial firm Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP’s trade secrets strength lies in its litigation capabilities. In Chicago, Sean Gallagher defended a life sciences firm against claims for trade secret misappropriation relating to technology used in pathology laboratories for the diagnosis of diseases, which resulted in a complete defense jury verdict for the client. Denver-based Lindley Brenza obtained a favorable outcome for an international seed company in claims against competitors that it had improperly obtained and used certain genetic processes.

Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP’s trade secrets group represents clients from a variety of industries, with particular expertise in the finance and insurance sectors. It also has a considerable track record advising various parties on strategies to avoid trade secret disputes. Trade secrets expert Roger Brooks led a team that acted for Renaissance Technologies Corp as plaintiff in a New York State Supreme Court action involving claims that two of the firm’s former employees used its proprietary and trade secret statistical algorithms to construct an automated statistical arbitrage equities trading system for a rival hedge fund. Having obtained a favorable settlement in that case, Books continues to provide the client with advisory work on the enforcement of the settlement agreement and the ongoing protection of its trade secrets.

Dedicated IP firm Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, L.L.P. fields over a dozen partners with significant experience in identifying, safeguarding and enforcing the protection of valuable confidential information and industry secrets across its Palo Alto, Boston and Washington DC offices. Clients range from startups to Fortune 500 companies, and the team has expertise across a large number of industry sectors including energy, pharmaceuticals, information technology and manufacturing.

The five-partner trade secrets team at Latham & Watkins LLP stands apart for its international footprint and multi-jurisdictional capabilities. Perry Viscounty, co-chair of the firm’s global IP litigation practice group, and newly promoted partner Jennifer Barry receive plaudits for their ‘level of service, attention to detail, quality of writing and sound business advice’. Together they are representing Chinese firm America Chung Nam (ACN) in a misappropriation case following the departure of two key employees for a rival paper exporting company, which centered on allegations that the departing employees contacted key ACN suppliers despite having no prior relationship with those companies. The case involves evidential issues spanning Japan, South Korea, Spain and China. The team also continues to defend Skullcandy in its well-publicized $10m trade secret dispute against Monster Cable.

Mayer Brown fields a core trade secrets team comprising eight partners that includes leading lawyer John Mancini, who co-chairs the firm’s IP practice from the Washington DC office. The team is able to draw on the firm’s global network to assist clients in the US, Europe, and particularly Asia. It advises a diverse client base on company-to-company trade secret cases relating to college football TV networks, door-to-door airport baggage services, and technological innovations in the smart phone market.

The ‘very knowledgeable’ Mark Haligan heads Nixon Peabody LLP’s trade secrets practice, which is composed of lawyers with backgrounds in IP, labor and employment, white-collar crime and commercial litigation, and has invested in building its international client base in China and South Korea. Haligan served as lead counsel for Motorola in a lawsuit against a large Chinese technology company and 13 individuals, which involved violations of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act and trade secrets misappropriation. A favorable settlement was secured for the client, and one of the defendants was found guilty in a separate criminal trial under the Economic Espionage Act. The firm is also lead counsel for defendants Bob Rogers Travel and Brian Rogers in a lawsuit involving alleged violations of non-compete and non-disclosure obligations, unfair competition, and civil conspiracy.

Schiff Hardin LLP wields ‘a devoted team with impressive trial and negotiation skills’. Practice leader Linda Stevens operates out of Chicago alongside three other core partners, with the broader team spread across its other US offices. Matthew Prewitt is commended for his ‘deep knowledge of the law’, as well as his attention to detail. He successfully defended Portuguese multinational Logoplaste against allegations of trade secrets misappropriation by a competitor that had previously been in merger discussions with the firm. In a first under the Illinois Trade Secrets Act, the Circuit Court of Cook County found that the plaintiff had made its claims in bad faith, and ordered that it pay for the client’s attorney fees.

Seyfarth Shaw LLP has ‘a strong national footprint and deep expertise arising out of its track record for large corporate clients’, with a strong focus on high-level executive appointments and departures. The ‘brilliant and incredibly responsiveRobert Milligan acted for client US Foods in an employee-raiding case involving several regional executives departing the client to join chief competitor Shamrock Foods Company. Milligan and his team secured a permanent injunction preventing the former US Foods employees from using alleged trade secrets and confidential information in the course of their new employment. The firm’s 12-attorney e-discovery group has strong technical backgrounds in computer forensics.

Boston-based Choate, Hall & Stewart’s niche practice focuses on advising clients in the life sciences arena on both company-to-company and employee-mobility trade secret cases. Practice co-chair Michael Bunis recently settled a dispute for a leading engineer and manufacturer of medical imagery equipment in a dispute with a former employee who was alleged to have misappropriated confidential information. The practice is also acting for New England Biolabs in a matter involving the theft of trade secrets by former employees who founded a new company. Outside of life sciences, it is currently working with EMC Corporation, a global provider of consulting and IT services, on a claim of theft of data by former employees who went on to found their own company.

The trade secrets team at Dentons has extensive experience handling various trade secrets cases, including company-to-company and employment-related cases, for plaintiffs and defendants. It is defending Vulcan Motor Club in a trade secrets misappropriation case following collapsed merger discussions. Christian Samay is a key contact.

Dorsey & Whitney LLP’s IP litigation expertise forms the backbone of its well-regarded trade secrets group. Illustrating its ability to handle complex trade secrets cases through forward-thinking legal strategies, the team was the first to employ the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act to obtain a preliminary injunction preventing unauthorized entry of a company database through a public website. In another technology-related case, it recently obtained a complete defense verdict for client Cisco Systems in a $400m claim for damages concerning the alleged misappropriation of trade secrets relating to computer storage technology.

Greenberg Traurig LLP’s trade secrets team is co-headed by Kurt Kappes in Sacramento and Rich McCrea in Tampa. It recently settled a case for defendants SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment and Anheuser-Busch, in a claim by former animators of a Fortune 500 company for $350m in damages, alleging that the client had copied their ideas, concepts and drawings for dozens of attractions at multiple parks. On the plaintiff side, it acted for Pyro Spectaculars in a claim against a former employer who had surreptitiously downloaded the client’s documents and handed them to its new employer. A motion for preliminary injunction was granted to Pyro Spectaculars shortly after the complaint was filed.

A substantial portion of Jenner & Block LLP’s trade secrets practice involves non-contentious work advising employers on potential trade secret and non-compete issues concerning new employees, as well as assisting departing employees on similar issues. On the dispute side, Debbie Berman represented the subsidiary of a leading electronic systems developer in a trade secrets misappropriation action against former employees and other individuals. The action was resolved through a series of favorable settlements for the client. The practice has a strong presence in Chicago, and also operates out of offices in Washington DC, Los Angeles and New York.

Commercial litigation outfit Kasowitz, Benson, Torres & Friedman LLP’s track record includes representing defendants and plaintiffs in a number of employee-movement-related trade secrets cases in courts across the US. It obtained injunctive relief for Edelman Public Relations in an action against two former senior executives and their new employer in claims involving the alleged theft of confidential information and poaching of clients. It also represented Avnet, a large distributor of electronic parts, in a claim for trade secrets misappropriation brought against it by a competitor in the New York Federal Court. New York-based Aaron Marks is a key contact.

Based out of Atlanta, Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton’s 16-attorney trade secrets group has particular strengths in trade secrets issues that have arisen from the movement of employees and the breach of restrictive covenants. Practice co-leader Jay Bogan acted for technology firm Digital Generation in litigation involving the departure of a top-level salesperson who diverted a number of the client’s customers towards his new employer. Digital Generation was awarded over $3.5m in damages following successful arbitration proceedings. The practice experienced a growth in the number of clients seeking pre-litigation advice, resulting in an increase in trade secret audits and advice training employees.

White-collar criminal defense

Index of tables

  1. White-collar criminal defense
  2. Leading lawyers

The ‘terrific’ team at Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP represents global corporates and executives to a ‘gold standard’. The firm, which has a longstanding reputation in the market, is an undisputed leader for FCPA work and recently achieved a landmark result for Morgan Stanley in a DOJ and SEC investigation into violations involving the company’s real estate investment operations in China. In an example of the growing pertinence of sanctions compliance work, it successfully defended Italian bank Intesa SanPaolo in a DOJ, Manhattan DA and OFAC investigation into alleged violation of US sanctions and other laws in transactions relating to Iran, Cuba, Libya and Sudan. Other recent highlights include successfully defending Con Edison in a DOJ investigation concerning allegations that it received kickbacks from contractors in exchange for the approval of fraudulent and inflated payments. The team is also busy with various anti-money laundering, healthcare fraud and insider trading cases. Lead partner Carey Dunne is tremendously well respected, as are star practitioners Scott Muller (who is particularly recommended for FCPA matters) and Washington DC-based Linda Chatman Thomsen. Kimberley Harris, who recently returned to the firm from government, and Washington DC-based Raul Yanes, both have a particular focus on congressional investigations. Other key partners include Angela Burgess, Martine Beamon and Jennifer Newstead. All are based in New York except where otherwise stated.

Debevoise & Plimpton LLP is ‘recommended very highly’, and in particular, for ‘large white-collar or securities enforcement matters’. This ‘wonderful practice’ is ‘simply outstanding for timeliness, knowledge, value, and depth of strength across the team’. It was recently instructed by former chairman and CEO of Bank of America Ken Lewis, in a lawsuit filed by the New York Attorney General following the bank’s acquisition of Merrill Lynch. It also represented JPMorgan Chase in investigations conducted by several state and federal agencies into its mortgage acquisition and securitization practices. The group’s expertise is not restricted to the financial arena; having recently advised a well-known technology corporation and, in a separate matter, the independent directors of News Corp, relating to allegations made against the company. It is also active within the healthcare space (where clients include Tenet Healthcare and Merck) and various other industries. The firm ‘has some superstars’, such as Bruce Yannett, who heads the group from its New York headquarters, but saw the departure of one of its stalwarts, Mary Jo White, who was appointed as chair of the SEC in early 2013. The newly promoted Andrew Levine is ‘smart, responsive, collaborative and sharp in his advice’. Also recommended are Andrew Ceresney, Matthew Fishbein and Sean Hecker. Robert Kaplan recently joined the Washington DC office from the SEC.

Phenomenal litigation shopPaul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP is ‘undoubtedly one of the strongest players in this market’. With a white-collar team that is ‘top notch from top to bottom’, it is distinguished from many competitors by the ‘consistency and excellence of its work’, and provides a client service that is ‘second to none’. A diverse remit of instructions saw it representing Citigroup Global Markets Inc (CGMI) in a substantial SEC investigation into the structuring, marketing and sale of CDO securities, and separately, assisting a six-member committee from the NBA with an internal investigation into recent allegations concerning its leadership and business practices. In addition to its corporate client base, the firm is frequently called upon to defend high-profile individuals against allegations of insider trading and other types of misconduct. The ‘outstanding line-up’ of lawyers includes co-chair of the group and one of the market’s leading figures Theodore Wells, as well as Michele Hirshman and Roberto Finzi. The ‘phenomenalMark Pomerantz continues to practice as of counsel.

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP’s practice is often ‘a top choice for financial services clients’, where recent successes include representing Goldman Sachs and its officers: following a DOJ investigation alleging various violations of federal securities laws, it was recently announced that neither the company nor its employees would be prosecuted. It has also been acting for Moody’s in much-publicized matters arising out of its role in the subprime securitization market. It has taken on a key role acting for JPMorgan Chase in its mortgage-backed securities litigation and regulatory matters (which includes litigation arising from securitizations issued by WaMu and Bear Stearns as well as the company itself); over 70 cases are currently pending in multiple state and federal jurisdictions. Other highlights in 2012 included acting for Barclays in the LIBOR investigations, and, for Diageo, successfully resolving a public SEC investigation into alleged FCPA violations arising from its business practices in India, Thailand and South Korea. The ‘very responsive and very knowledgeable’ team provides ‘an excellent overall service’ under the guidance of managing partner Samuel Seymour; he, Karen Patton Seymour, and Nicolas Bourtin are ‘all excellent lawyers with incredible expertise in this area’. Deputy managing partner Steven Peikin is also ‘first-rate’.

Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLPattracts a lot of international work’, such as acting as global coordinating counsel for HSBC in litigation and regulatory inquiries arising from the Madoff Ponzi scheme, which also spawned instructions from Bank of New York Mellon, Citigroup Global Markets, BNP Paribas and others. This ‘superb’ team is also at the forefront of the LIBOR investigations, in which it is representing two major financial institutions. Following on from revelations of the mutibillion-dollar accounting fraud within Olympus Corporation, it has been advising a multinational financial client that did business with the company. For Swiss banking group Julius Baer, it is advising on simultaneous DOJ and IRS investigations into its cross-border business. As one would expect from a team of this caliber, FCPA and insider trading cases also feature heavily. And, while this remains at the heart of the practice, the firm has been broadening its remit with instructions from non-financial clients such as Alpha Natural Resources. Lauded as a ‘great trial firm’, clients are impressed by the team’s ‘immediate response times, very thoughtful answers, and creative approaches to problems’. The ‘excellent team’, which is ‘impressive from juniors to partners’, includes Lewis Liman, who is singled out for his ‘intelligence, judgment and attention to the issues’. Alongside him in New York are recommended attorneys David Brodsky, Lev Dassin and Michael Lazerwitz. In Washington DC, David Becker and the ‘commercial and professionalShawn Chen are also highly rated.

Covington & Burling LLP is ‘absolutely top of the tree’ in its Washington DC stomping ground, where it is ‘extremely strong among its competitors’, while displaying considerable strength in New York and California too. Arguably, its most notable work falls within the life sciences sphere - a recent GlaxoSmithKline drug misbranding case, that resulted in a landmark $3bn settlement, being a case-in-point. This ‘extremely strong and responsive’ group also acts for various financial institutions; it is defending the former CEO of IndyMac Bank, Michael Perry, against allegations of securities fraud relating to its collapse. Within the defense sector, it acted for UTC and its subsidiaries, Pratt & Whitney Canada and Hamilton Sundstrand, in an enforcement action brought by the DOJ over alleged violations of criminal export controls. The team of ‘outstanding advisers and litigators’ is led by Bruce Baird, who has been active in LIBOR-related matters, Ethan Posner, who focuses on pharmaceutical clients, and New York-based Nancy Kestenbaum. Other names to note include James Garland, a ‘strong litigator’ who is ‘bright with a good mix of experience and background’, and West Coast attorneys David Bayless and Tammy Albarrán. Alan Vinegrad (New York) is also recommended. Attorneys are based in Washington DC unless otherwise stated.

The ‘really, really outstanding’ group at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP is ‘terrific, and has a lot of depth’. ‘Exceptional’ Washington DC-based co-chair Joseph Warin receives much of the credit for this ‘tremendous white-collar practice’, as he ‘"owns" the FCPA bar’ and is a ‘rare breed in that he is a strategic thinker with trial skills to back up his depth’. Clients availing of this expertise include Alliance One; the firm is reviewing its anti-corruption compliance controls worldwide as part of a settlement agreement with the DOJ and SEC following an investigation in 2010. It has also been reviewing Siemen’s compliance efforts since 2008. Also a popular choice for individuals, it recently represented a healthcare company’s CFO in an investigation by the California State Attorney General into alleged Medicaid fraud. It is also representing the former head of the West Africa Division of a US oil-drilling company, in an SEC enforcement action over alleged bribes paid to Nigerian officials. The team of ‘first-rate lawyers’ has real national spread, and its other co-chairs are Debra Wong Yang in Los Angeles and Jim Walden in New York.

Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP’s stand-alone white-collar practice is ‘unquestionably a strong player’, and is actively engaged in many of the key trends including insider trading, tax evasion, FCPA and OFAC violations, illegal internet gaming, accounting fraud, and various types of corruption. Somewhat unusually for a large firm, a substantial portion of its clients are individuals; recent examples include former managing director at Intel Rajiv Goel, former Mariner Energy board member Clayton Peterson, former CFO of Bristol-Myers Squibb Frederick Schiff, and former UBS investment banker Doug Lane. It is currently advising Kuwaiti company Agility Logistics in a substantial government contracting fraud case arising from its multibillion-dollar contract to provide a food service to the US military in Iraq; the firm is also acting for its chairman in the related civil qui tam False Claims Act case. For Medtronic, the firm advised on a DOJ investigation into implantable cardiac defibrillators (ICDs) and related Medicare reimbursement. The bulk of the practice is based in New York, where global litigation head David Zornow is widely renowned, as are Lawrence Spiegel, John Carroll and Steven Glaser. Washington DC-based Michele Roberts is also held in extremely high regard.

Williams & Connolly LLP is a ‘fabulous trial and white-collar firm’ and attracts wide acclaim for its ‘tremendous skill and depth’ and ‘consistently strong results’. Operating from a single office in Washington DC, where it is ‘extremely highly thought of’, the firm is extremely active in government and internal investigations and other types of litigation on a national basis, and has also handled extradition matters and criminal investigations abroad. Unlike many peers, it lacks an institutional client base to leverage off, but nonetheless is regularly called upon by businesses and individuals. The firm’s incredible prestige is largely owing to a track record for defending high-profile political figures; these have included executives from a well-known telecoms company, a global investment bank, a major public healthcare company, and a global accounting firm. Repeatedly praised for its ‘quality people’, it counts such stars among its ranks as Brendan Sullivan, ‘someone who is undoubtedly well-known and respected’, and David Zinn, who is noted for his depth of experience and expertise.

Dechert LLP’s ‘effective approach’ and ‘focus on achieving good results’ sees it doing ‘a very good job’. The group’s diverse clientbase includes a number of high-profile organizations and individuals and the list of cases often involves sensitive, high-stakes litigation, with internal investigations and class actions featuring prominently. The firm is assisting MF Global’s former CEO Jon Corzine in light of the company’s collapse; the mandate includes bankruptcy proceedings, regulators’ and other inquiries, customers’ demands, and several shareholder class actions. It is also acting for Irex Corporation, its parent company North Lime Group, and some directors and officers from both companies, in litigation arising out of a merger that took place in 2006. Firm chairman Andrew Levander is repeatedly singled out as ‘a lawyer in his prime’ who has ‘visibility and big-ticket clients’, and practice head Robert Jossen and Benjamin Rosenberg are also highly praised. Hector Gonzalez is ‘an excellent trial lawyer and strategic thinker who won’t waste clients’ time or money’, and Jonathan Streeter was a key addition, having previously been a member of the Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force. All the aforementioned are based in New York, but the group also has partners on the ground in Pennsylvania and Washington DC.

Hogan Lovells LLPranks among the best in the nation’, particularly when it comes to healthcare fraud, leveraging off its esteemed healthcare regulatory practice. The group is ‘strong, broad and nationwide’, enabling it to handle ‘serious and important litigation’, and the team is ‘highly responsive’ with ‘great expertise and proactive strategies’. It recently had two rounds of success for key client Orthofix: a reduced fine following an investigation into violations of US foreign bribery law, and, for its subsidiary Blackstone Medical, a $30m settlement to resolve a qui tam complaint and related criminal investigation, without criminal charges or penalties. United Health group is another institutional client; the firm is advising it in relation to Medicare fraud, among other things. In Washington DC, the names to note are practice leader and ‘major playerPeter Spivack, Robert Bennett, who has a longstanding reputation in this field, and the ‘unbelievably greatTy Cobb. Denver-based Michael Theis is ‘truly an expert in this area of law’, and a ‘great partner and thoughtful strategist’. As to be expected from a ‘big and solid firm’ such as this, the group’s national reach takes in further offices; these are located in Silicon Valley, New York, San Francisco, Philadelphia and Baltimore.

The ‘excellentKramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP’s areas of expertise typify a superior white-collar group practising out of New York, with securities, accounting fraud, money laundering and other financial wrongdoings featuring heavily, as well as matters relating to healthcare, the environment, public corruption and antitrust. A ‘high-quality option for individuals’, the firm is representing the former MD of McKinsey, Rajat K Gupta, in parallel civil and criminal proceedings brought by the SEC in the Galleon insider trading case. Other clients include the former president and COO of MF Global, in investigations and class action lawsuits arising from the group’s collapse, and Muriel Siebert and the investment banking firm of Muriel Siebert and Company, in litigation against its former COO. Recent successes include defending a former Deutsche Bank employee against alleged tax-shelter fraud, in which the client was acquitted on all criminal charges. Corporate clients include Bear Stearns, which the group has been representing since the onset of the financial crisis and its subsequent acquisition by JPMorgan Chase. Gary Naftalis, an ‘exceptional person, lawyer and litigator’, co-chairs the practice alongside Barry Berke, who is highly respected throughout the market. Jennifer Rochon is ‘fantastic - as well as being very smart, she genuinely cares about your case, knows all the details of your situation and is very interested in winning’.

With critical mass throughout the country, Sidley Austin LLP’s ‘top-notch’ group ‘stands out’, particularly in the healthcare arena. For institutional firm client Bayer, it recently obtained two important victories in qui tam cases; one involved the drug Baycol and the other involved YAZ and Yasmin. Other highlights included representing former AIG executive Christian M Milton in a criminal securities fraud case, securing a favorable deferred prosecution agreement. FCPA-related matters included defending a former sales manager of Control Components against alleged conspiracy to bribe foreign officials; an initial prospect of more than 25 years in prison was reduced to three years’ probation. Key partners in Washington DC include Tom Green, who is ‘as good as they get’; he and Karen Popp are ‘very strong’, and Kristin Graham Koehler has ‘excellent judgment, is extremely practical, and a true pleasure to work with, especially in difficult situations’. One client said the team ‘impressed so much that more work has been sent its way’. Elsewhere, Dave Anderson and Joshua Hill (a former federal prosecutor recruited by the firm in 2012) in San Francisco, and Kimberly Dunne in Los Angeles, are also recommended.

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz is a ‘tremendous firm with a worldwide reputation’ and although this ‘fabulous’ group is ‘small and elite’, its lawyers are ‘some of the finest in the business’. The team is best known for domestic work, but also handles international matters when required by its ever-expanding base of large multinational clients. Group head Lawrence Pedowitz is a renowned figure in the market, with extensive experience in internal investigations, corporate governance, and compliance reviews. In recent years the team, like many of its peers, has been busy advising on criminal tax evasion, insider trading, securities and accounting fraud, False Claims Act cases, and conducting special investigations in response to whistleblowers or governmental inquiries. Its New York location means it is deeply entrenched in the financial services market, but the complementary corporate and antitrust practices at the firm mean that it also acts for defense contractors, pharmaceutical companies, law firms and corporate officers. Jonathan Moses, John Savarese and David Anders are recommended.

Notwithstanding the recent departure of Barry Bohrer, Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello P.C. has a ‘top-notch reputation’ and is among ‘the best in the business for the service it provides’. Arguably larger than a standard boutique, the firm comprises a group of specialized litigators and trial lawyers, and ‘stands out due to the successful attorney/client relationship it builds’. It has been busy on numerous investigations (including internal investigations) in the FCPA arena, particularly relating to securities and healthcare fraud. Notable ongoing instructions include acting for former SAIC executive Gerard Denault, who is facing charges of fraud and money laundering for receiving $9m in illegal kickbacks for his work on the overhaul of the New York CityTime payroll system. For another client, it is advising on a pending criminal indictment against the founders of three large poker websites and eight other defendants charged with bank fraud and money laundering for allegedly scheming to circumvent US laws banning online gambling. Robert Anello is ‘beyond efficacy’ and has ‘an amazing success rate - he is excellent at getting potential complaints or indictments dropped’. Elkan Abramowitz is a ‘brilliant trial lawyer’, and Richard Weinberg is a ‘terrific white-collar lawyer for SEC matters’. Jonathan Sack is also highly recommended.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP wins plaudits for myriad reasons such as its ‘thorough prep work’, ‘great knowledge of the industry’, ‘well thought-out advice’, ‘good temperament with other counsel’ and ‘good advocacy’. It has recently represented Abbott in various investigations concerning the drug Depakote; in 2012 the company pleaded guilty to a single misdemeanor violation, and a civil settlement agreement of $1.6bn was reached, while a separate action by the State of Louisiana remains ongoing. Other mandates included Aon, in an investigation by the US and UK governments into alleged illicit compensation, payments, and gifts to foreign officials that violated FCPA and related UK anti-corruption statutes. BP’s highly-publicized Deepwater Horizon case was another coup; the firm has been one of three put together in a "virtual firm" model to defend against the various ongoing governmental investigations. In New York, its stars include Michael Garcia, the ‘excellentAndrew Genser, and Henry DePippo, who is ‘particularly terrific and very strategic and practical in his advice’. In Chicago, Mark Filip has a solid reputation, and Neil Eggleston, who came from Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, was a notable addition in Washington DC, where Laurence Urgenson is also located.

Stand-out performerO’Melveny & Myers LLP has considerable clout given its ability to advise on a broad range of white-collar issues, and a line-up of clients that includes Bank of America, Credit Suisse, eBay, Apple and Caltech. Within the FCPA space, it advises various global financial institutions, Fortune 100 clients, and leading film companies, and it recently conducted a major internal FCPA investigation for the audit committee of a casino company. Antitrust is another stalwart of the group, where, as adviser to Hynix, it is involved in industry-wide criminal investigations and related civil actions in the Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM), Static Random Access Memory (SRAM), and Flash markets. The firm also acted for Honeywell in an antitrust class action alleging monopolization in certain markets. Additionally, it is a sound choice for SEC enforcement matters, having represented former Hewlett-Packard CEO Mark Hurd in the investigation into his highly publicized departure from the company, with ongoing mandates in this area including acting for a semiconductor company in an investigation into revenue recognition practices. The firm’s 17 key partners are spread across multiple US offices, and key names to note include Carolyn Kubota Los Angeles, Michael Tubach in San Francisco, and Richard Grime in Washington DC.

Leading boutiqueRichards Kibbe & Orbe LLP is a ‘good alternative option’ to the traditional New York powerhouses, and prides itself on its excellent knowledge of the financial sector and its experience in parallel criminal investigations. Recent work examples include acting for a national broker dealer in DOJ and SEC investigations into trading by a market access customer, and representing a public company in an FCPA case. It also has a strong track record in defending individuals; for former UBS private banker Christos Bagios, the team resolved a criminal case involving tax evasion on undeclared Swiss accounts, through a plea agreement with an agreed non-incarceration sentence. Notwithstanding the departure of Jeffrey Lehtman to Allen & Overy LLP, the firm ‘does a great job’ under the leadership of Michael Mann in Washington DC, where William Barry, noted for his cross-border expertise, is also based. In New York, name partner Lee Richards leads the team and is ‘especially excellent at dealing with the government in complex investigations’; Richards also ‘really worries about problems so that the clients don’t have to’. MaryJeanette Dee is highly experienced, particularly in internal investigations, and Shari Brandt also has a great reputation. Former federal prosecutor Daniel Stein was a key addition in 2012.

WilmerHale is ‘consistently outstanding’, with ‘a depth of talent that is truly impressive’. When it comes to FCPA work, its ‘service in this high-risk area is excellent’, and ‘hindsight usually proves that the advice was on point’. The group’s geographical spread means it offers the full gamut of white-collar services; the Boston and Washington DC offices attract a number of government and regulatory investigations, often for large banks and major corporates, while the firm as a whole is highly expert in healthcare. Recent successes include acting for former Stryker Biotech sales manager David Ard, obtaining a dismissal of all criminal charges in a federal court trial in Boston. Headline mandates include representing BP in the myriad investigations and legal proceedings brought about following the Deep Water Horizon oil spill. Stephen Jonas heads the group from Boston, where the ‘unflappable’ Karen Green is also based; Green is a ‘focused and natural leader’ who ‘just hammers away at the facts’. Other recommended lawyers include the ‘personable and pleasant’ Boyd Johnston in New York, who has ‘an outstanding record for success’, and Howard Shapiro in Washington DC.

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP saw the departure of Audrey Strauss, who became Chief Legal Officer of the firm’s client Alcoa. William Johnson became chair of the firm’s newly created stand-alone white-collar defense group. Among its attributes are a ‘top-notch service’, ‘strong subject matter knowledge’ and the ability to be ‘practical and commercial at the same time’. The fallout from the financial crisis brought a flow of work to the firm globally, as it is strategically located in the world’s principal financial centers and particularly well renowned in New York. Clients include Wells Fargo, fighting allegations of underwriting and quality misconduct in a $2bn lawsuit brought by the DOJ in connection with its handling of mortgage loans during a 10-year period. The firm is also acting for various hedge funds, brokers, and investment banks and their employees. Carmen Lawrence, Dixie Johnson (Washington DC), and Steven Witzel are recommended.

Lankler Siffert & Wohl LLP is a ‘very important player in New York’; ‘clearly one of the better boutiques’, it has an ‘excellent reputation’, with a number of attorneys ‘generally recognized as being among New York’s finest criminal defense lawyers’. ‘Leading practitioner’ John Wing recently represented the executive vice-president of Lehr Construction Company, Todd Phillips, in a three-month fraud trial in which he was accused of stealing $30m from the firm’s clients; he was acquitted of all charges. Other stars within the group include John Siffert, who is ‘is very good at oral argument’ and whose ‘reputation as a "straight-shooter" gives him additional credibility before both prosecutors and judges’. Daniel Gitner is ‘known to be trustworthy, which wins him a lot of respect from many people, and Frank Wohl has ‘exceptional knowledge of this area of the law’ and his ‘judgment is thoughtful and well reasoned’. Lisa Zornberg recently joined from the US Attorneys’ Office, and ‘her addition only serves to enhance the firm’s reputation’.

Munger, Tolles & Olson is ‘top-notch for both white-collar defense and litigation’, accomplished in all types of financial fraud, FCPA and False Claims Act cases, as well as matters relating to IP, the environment and antitrust. Considered ‘a phenomenal player’ on the West Coast, the group has an abundance of seasoned trial lawyers at its disposal, and its widely acclaimed internal investigations practice is a further boon. The firm is acting for Transocean and some of its subsidiaries, as either owners or operators of the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig, in litigation arising from the BP oil spill; the multi-district litigation and other civil proceedings and criminal investigations are currently ongoing. Other recent mandates include representing a former director of a NYSE-listed public company in an SEC investigation into alleged tipping with insider information. It is also assisting a global aerospace and defense technology company with two civil investigations in Los Angeles, in connection with the severance of a former officer and whether the company’s accounting violated the Federal Acquisition Regulations. Brad Brian is recommended.

Winston & Strawn LLP’s glowing reputation shows no sign of diminishing, following a slew of high-profile instructions, including defending William Cellini in a public corruption case brought by the US Attorney’s Office in Chicago, and acting for former BP CEO Tony Hayward in Deepwater Horizon litigation. It also defended former CEO of Spectranetics, John Schulte, against charges alleging offenses relating to the use of certain medical devices; following trial, he was acquitted of 11 of 12 charges. The scope of the team’s work is wide-ranging, taking in FCPA, money laundering, tax violations and healthcare fraud. Another advantage is its geographical spread, with lawyers on the ground in New York, Washington DC, Charlotte and San Francisco. The ‘excellentDaniel Rubinstein, who recently joined from Greenberg Traurig LLP attracts rave reviews, with multiple clients noting his ‘personal investment in the cases and outcome’, as well as the ‘priceless care that was provided throughout’ by Rubenstein and his team. The ‘highly respectedDan Webb and Tom Kirsch are key contacts.

At Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP, ‘the quality is excellent’ and its leading stars David Kelley and Bart Friedman have a ‘terrific reputation’. Having taken on a series of high-profile cases of late, the group continues to quantify its stature as a prominent player in the market. Audit committees frequently instruct the firm; in the investigation of Wal-Mart Stores by the SEC and DOJ, the firm was tasked with overseeing the global internal investigation as well as carrying out compliance and program modifications. Other similar examples include the audit committee of QualComm, concerning the company’s FCPA compliance, and the audit committee of Diageo, for which it lead an internal investigation of FCPA violations in Korea, Thailand, India and elsewhere relating to an investigation by the SEC. A substantial amount of work comes from major financial institutions, and it is currently advising the special committee of the CBOE in an investigation and parallel litigation. It represented numerous individuals in the New York Attorney General’s so-called "pay to play" investigation, and LIBOR-related matters have also been a significant source of work. Herbert Washer, Adam Zurofsky, Anirudh Bansal and Penny Windle are also recommended. All named attorneys are based in New York, and there are additional resources located in Washington DC.

Keker & Van Nest, L.L.P. is a ‘wonderful small shop, although it is growing’. This ‘fabulous boutique’ is an attractive choice for individuals, given name partner John Keker’s ‘legendary’ status. The firm’s ‘national reputation’ is a testimony to its strength, as it operates out of a single office in San Francisco, and each of its 33 partners is exclusively dedicated to litigation. The firm successfully defended former Citigroup director Brian Stoker in a trial stemming from a $1bn CDO created shortly before the collapse of the US housing market. Current work examples include acting for the former owner of a Californian agribusiness company in relation to antitrust, mail fraud and bribery charges brought by the US Attorneys’ Office in Sacramento. Elliot Peters is defending the director of Full Tilt Poker, Howard Lederer, in a DOJ investigation and civil forfeiture action in the Southern District of New York, alleging his involvement in a Ponzi scheme in which the company paid out $444m of customer money. Jan Nielsen Little and Robert Van Nest are also recommended.

Latham & Watkins LLP’s global practice is headed by David Schindler and Steven Bauer, located in Los Angeles and San Francisco respectively. The practice has gone from strength to strength in recent years, building up expertise in a wide range of areas, with healthcare fraud and FCPA matters being particularly key. Its dexterity in the environmental sphere came to the fore when representing PG&E in an investigation following a pipeline explosion in a residential community; the investigation is ongoing, and the firm is also serving as lead counsel in the correlating regulatory investigation and civil trial, which involves 370 plaintiffs. For SCAN Health Plan, it acted in parallel federal and state criminal and civil investigations alleging overpayments by California’s Medi-Cal program going back to 1985, persuading the government to close the criminal matter with no charges, and obtaining a favorable settlement. Other highlights include successfully defending the City of Vernon against allegations of corruption by the District Attorney and the California Attorney General, and it is currently representing a senior Wal-Mart executive in parallel DOJ/SEC FCPA investigations and myriad civil suits arising out of alleged corrupt payments in Mexico. In addition to Shindler and Bauer, recommended attorneys include Washington DC-based managing partner Alice Fisher, Chicago-based Sean Berkowitz and Zachary Fardon, who chair the litigation practice globally and locally, respectively.

McDermott Will & Emery LLP’s ‘phenomenal team’ is praised for its ‘considerable bench strength’; the ‘very responsive and knowledgeable lawyers’ are ‘spot on’ when it comes to client service, ‘making the client feel theirs is the only matter’, and displaying ‘industry knowledge that exceeds expectations’. The firm’s synonymy with the healthcare industry is a major benefactor, and yields regular instructions from institutional clients such as Amgen (a recent whistleblower suit involving alleged Medicare fraud that was successfully resolved), and DaVita, for which it has secured a number of victories of late. The firm demonstrated its ability to handle complex, cross-border matters, in its role in co-ordinating the response from a Japanese auto-parts manufacturer that is the subject of a criminal antitrust investigation into alleged cartel activities in multiple countries. Securities work is another key area - that group is headed by ‘knowledgeable advocate’ Fredric Firestone in Washington DC, and Michael Kendall leads the global white-collar group from Boston, where Mark Pearlstein is also based. David Rosenbloom and Gordon Greenberg are key contacts in Chicago and Los Angeles respectively.

Morgan Lewis is an ‘excellent firm’, and its relatively large and multi-faceted white-collar practice has ‘strong knowledge’ across a broad range of industries. Adept in all manner of investigations and compliance, and with the faculty to go to trial when necessary, it is a ‘go-to’ choice for many, particularly those in the healthcare sector. It has been representing Triumph Group in the highly publicized trade secrets case brought by Eaton Corporation; all claims were dismissed without prejudice, and the case is currently on appeal. In 2012, the team acted for Oracle in an FCPA investigation, reaching a favorable $2m settlement with the SEC. Other clients include Guthrie Health, Cephalon and AmerisourceBergen. The Washington DC office saw four new additions from government: George Terwilliger III, Matthew Miner, Daniel Levin and Robert Bittman. Leslie Caldwell in New York ‘has a very successful practice’, and Philadelphia-based Eric Sitarchuk is also recommended.

Morrison & Foerster LLP’s white-collar group has an extensive catalog of high-level executives on its client roster, alongside some household name companies and financial institutions. The firm’s critical mass and geographical spread is undoubtedly a boon, and this ability to adopt a multi-office approach was utilized when representing former Barclays’ COO Jerry del Missier and other officials in the LIBOR investigations. Additional mandates included representing a Chinese company in SEC and DOJ investigations into potential financial fraud, and defending founder and former CEO of Vitesse, Dr Louis Tomasetta, in parallel criminal and SEC civil enforcement proceedings over his alleged involvement in a conspiracy to commit securities fraud and other offenses. New York partners Ronald White and Carl Loewenson Jr are ‘very specific on technical details’, and ‘experienced in dealing with both government agencies and private parties’. Joel Haims is also a key contact in this office. Randall Fons in Denver is ‘exceptional - 100% committed and a pleasure to deal with’, and a ‘great problem solver with deep knowledge of the subject matter’. Adam Hoffinger in Washington DC is ‘terrific’, and San Francisco-based Jordan Eth is also recommended.

Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP’s profile continues to rise, buoyed by its recent role in high-profile matters such as the "Africa Sting", in which it represented J Gregory Godsey; Washington DC-based Michael Madigan led on the matter. The group is highly adept when it comes to FCPA issues (both compliance and investigations), and is often called upon to act for audit committees and conduct internal investigations, and for assistance with corporate compliance programs. Noted for its ‘excellent, high-quality and dedicated work from associate and paralegal level through senior partner level’, the team includes a number of former government attorneys and has the advantage of drawing upon the firm’s wider resources, which includes some 300 litigators. Although spread nationally, including partners in New York, the group’s primary stomping ground is on the West Coast. The team is lauded for its ‘amazing trial performance and preparation’, with particular praise reserved for Los Angeles-based Thomas McConville and San Francisco-based Warrington Parker, who are ‘outstanding in the courtroom’. The group’s other virtues include ‘excellent judgment’, and the ability to ‘instil confidence in the client and gain trust from the judge and jury’. Mark Beck (Los Angeles), Walter Brown (San Franciso) and McGregor Scott (Sacramento) are also highly recommended.

Shearman & Sterling LLP is best known for its FCPA investigations and compliance work, which is ‘really, really great’. It has vast experience in private securities class actions, corruption, money laundering and antitrust, for a client base compiled mainly of financial institutions and high-level executives. On the West Coast, key attorneys include Patrick Robbins (San Francisco), who recently led advice to the president of Taiwanese LCD manufacturer AU Optronics in a criminal case concerning the alleged price fixing of flat screen computer monitors, notebooks and televisions; the client was acquitted upon trial. The group serves as national counsel to Countrywide Financial and several of its affiliates in dozens of disputes with institutional purchasers of private-label RMBS. It also represented Galleon Management in its high-profile insider trading case - successfully negotiating a global settlement with the SEC - and continues to deal with investor and employee issues resulting from the outcome, and from the wind-down of its funds. In New York, Adam Hakki heads the litigation group, with Stephen Fishbein and John Nathanson leading the white-collar arm. Philip Urofsky heads the global anti-corruption practice from Washington DC.

Steptoe & Johnson LLP has ‘one of the finest white-collar practices at a major law firm’ according to clients; this ‘outstanding’ group is relatively small, but the prominence of certain attorneys provide extra gravitas. In particular, Reid Weingarten is repeatedly described as ‘one of the most knowledgeable and experienced white-collar lawyers in the country’ following a slew of ‘prominent acquittals’. The firm is a popular choice for individuals, and has recently been advising on numerous antitrust-related matters. Clients regularly call upon the group to avail of its ‘significant trial expertise’; including Level Global Investors co-founder Anthony Chiasson, whom it represented in a securities fraud case, and former congressman Rick Renzi of Arizona, charged with several public corruption offences. Recent successes include defending DOJ attorney Edward Sullivan in an investigation into potential obstruction of justice (Sullivan was cleared of any wrongdoing), and, for the CEO of an Israeli company, obtaining the dismissal of a high-profile foreign bribery prosecution on the eve of trial. Brian Heberlig is a very respected figure in the market, and Chris Niewoehner, a recent addition to the Chicago office, ’has significant prosecutorial trial experience under high-pressure situations, and is outstanding’. All other named attorneys are based in Washington DC.

Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP’s team is ‘very impressive’, with a line-up that includes a number of former prosecutors, among them current co-chairs Steven Tyrrell and Jonathan Polkes in Washington DC and New York, respectively. Descriptions of the group include ‘very responsive’, ‘great service’, ‘very savvy’ and ‘good value for money’, and it ‘can deal with a lot of material very quickly’. Leveraging off the firm’s antitrust practice, the group is representing Simon & Schuster in an investigation into electronic book pricing, windowing and other distribution practices by the DOJ and two Attorney Generals’ Offices; it is also assisting the client in a number of class actions over alleged price fixing. The group’s work for Gentiva illustrates a flair for handling multi-faceted situations; it is representing the client in an SEC Medicare investigation, as well as in a substantial federal securities fraud class action and two shareholder derivative actions arising out of the investigation. It has also been involved in the fallout from the Lehman Brothers’ collapse, advising in the ongoing litigation and investigations that followed. Christopher Garcia recently joined the New York team from the US Attorneys’ Office, and other recommended lawyers include Christian Bartholomew in Washington DC and Christopher Pace in Miami.

Litigation specialist Zuckerman Spaeder has offices in Washington DC, (where it was first founded), New York, Tampa and Baltimore. It earns its place in the ranking following some high-profile wins; most notably, ‘great lawyer’ William Taylor defended former IMF MD Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who was accused of sexual assault in a New York City hotel. Paul Shechtman represented New York Crane Company, which was indicted for manslaughter and other crimes arising out of an accident on a street in Manhattan. With the advantage of a large pool of highly experienced specialists, it can handle a range of matters - it is ‘excellent for FCPA’, and is regularly instructed in relation to tax, government ethics and export control, sanctions regimes, and antitrust. As well as defending clients against various federal agencies, the firm also conducts internal investigations for both public and private companies.

Baker Botts L.L.P.’s white-collar practice is ‘both deep and broad’, with a solid track record among energy and banking clients, and often takes on mandates with a cross-border element. The team has ‘good knowledge of the law’, ‘plenty of agency contacts’ and is ‘very diligent in pursuit of the facts’. Mark Miller is ‘easy to work with but willing to express different viewpoints’, and Bridget Moore, a ‘star litigator with a deft touch with the SEC’, is ‘in the absolute upper echelon. Others singled out for praise include ‘best-in-breed defense lawyersMichael Barta and Alex Bourelly. The firm is representing AIG in the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, in an attempt to halt the release of confidential reports on a 2004 settlement with the SEC and DOJ. For Cobalt, it is providing strategic advice and guidance throughout its discussions with the SEC and DOJ concerning its activities relating to an offshore drilling project in the Republic of Angola. Other clients include former Bank of America CFO Joe Price, Halliburton, Marathon Oil Company and Marathon Petroleum.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP’s litigation practice is relatively young, having evolved out of its arbitration group in the past few years, but already has an impressive list of clients that includes a number of major financial institutions and blue-chip companies. Key to this standing is the fact the firm’s white-collar lawyer complement extends beyond the US, giving it added strength when dealing in international matters. Current mandates include representing a Swiss bank in a DOJ and IRS investigation for allegedly facilitating US customers in avoiding US tax payments, and representing Louis Dreyfus Energy in a False Claims Act investigaion into underpayment of royalties to the US Government. In conjunction with colleagues in the UK, the team is defending Oxford University Press before the World Bank and SFO, in an investigation into alleged corruption in East Africa on World Bank-financed purchases of educational materials. Recent successes include acting for Smiths Group in an internal investigation regarding potential FCPA violations concerning the activities of third-party distributors and competitors; the matter was concluded with no charges being brought. Aaron Marcu heads the practice, which includes Washington DC-based Tim Coleman, Adam Siegel and Benito Romano. The practice recently hired Matthew Freidrich in Washington DC, from Boies, Schiller & Flexner LLP. All attorneys are based in New York except where otherwise stated.

King & Spalding LLP’s credentials in the white-collar field are widely recognized; leveraging off the firm’s ‘huge healthcare defense group’, and a ‘very strong antitrust practice’, it is ideally placed to take on high-stakes criminal cases and parallel civil litigation, and for this is ‘held in very high regard’. In common with many of its peers, it also benefits from having a number of former government lawyers among its ranks. These include Washington DC-based Christopher Wray, whose experience is far reaching, taking in securities fraud, healthcare fraud, FCPA and export violations, bank secrecy and money laundering, public corruption, IP and cybercrime, and RICO. Wray has represented various Fortune 100 financial institutions in DOJ investigations, and acted for a number of leading global pharmaceutical companies in investigations into off-label promotion issues as well as parallel False Claims Act qui tam litigation. Other mandates included assisting a major healthcare company with multiple federal and state regulatory investigations, and acting for a leading telecoms company in multiple investigations into stock options prices. In New York, Andrew Hruska chairs the firm’s special matters and government investigations group, which represents companies, audit and special committees, and individuals in various white-collar and regulatory enforcement matters and internal investigations for large corporates.

Linklaters LLP’s white-collar team is relatively small, but in focusing exclusively on complex and high-value cases, has carved a successful practice representing major banks and corporates. The firm’s global network adds gravitas, yielding numerous cross-border mandates. The team is often called upon for commercial and regulatory advice, both in serious fraud investigations and in criminal antitrust and bribery matters, and regularly advises the firm’s M&A clients on anti-corruption issues. Previous highlights include working with the firm’s London office in representing News Corporation’s management and standards committee in investigations related to the News of the World phone-hacking scandal. The team has picked up a substantial share of FCPA-related work; acting for BAE Systems in the DOJ and SFO investigation into alleged bribery payments is one high-profile example. Joseph Armao heads the group, and Larry Bryne and Paul Alfieri are also recommended.

Using its global footprint to its advantage, Mayer Brown’s white-collar team frequently takes on complex mandates involving multiple government agencies (including those overseas), and provides ‘the highest quality of professional services’. Much of its remit centers around acts of misconduct within financial institutions, and this experience, when blended with a raft of trial expertise, often sees the firm take a leading role in defending prominent individuals. For example, it is representing former labor union president Tyrone Freeman, who has been charged with embezzling union funds, mail fraud, bank fraud, and filing false tax returns; the matter is ongoing and potential damages could exceed $500m. For Orbit Medical, the firm is lead counsel in a parallel criminal and civil DOJ investigation into allegations of fraudulent health care billing practices with potential False Claims Act damages. Recent successes include acting for Academi in a DOJ investigation into alleged violations of export control and firearms law, and alleged FCPA violations; a deferred prosecution agreement was reached and no action was taken. Chicago is the group’s principal location, and key contacts there include James Ferguson, who is a ‘true counselor in the historic sense of the word’, and co-heads Vincent Connolly and William Michael Jr, who are also recommended. Kelly Kramer is the main contact in Washington DC.

The 10-partner team at Proskauer Rose LLP is an excellent choice for internal investigations and for matters pertaining to SEC enforcement. The integration with the firm’s strong appellate practice (via leading white-collar and appellate specialist Mark Harris), is a differentiating factor, as is the fact it has an unusually high number of trial lawyers for a full-service New York firm. Clients include both individuals and companies, and it frequently takes on instructions with an international element, particularly as practice head Robert Cleary has a strong niche in foreign prosecutions. In line with the New York market trends, the team has been busy handling various matters relating to insider trading, ponzi schemes, LIBOR, antitrust, offshore tax and money laundering. Among representative highlights, it defended Cargolux Airlines executive Robert Van De Weg in a DOJ criminal antitrust matter, negotiating a favorable plea bargain on his behalf. It represented Absolute Poker owner Brent Beckley in a criminal case filed in New York, for deceiving banks over the processing of gambling proceeds; potentially facing up to 35 years in prison, he was sentenced to 14 months. The firm also served as co-counsel for petitioner Corey Hill, in a successful appeal challenging his sentence under the Fair Sentencing Act of 2010. Dietrich Snell is recommended.

Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP represents a vast array of national and international companies, and typically competes outside of the financial services space, although it has acted for Morgan Stanley and AIG. Recent highlights include representing Chinese steel company Pangang Group in an ongoing criminal case in the Northern District of California, alleging that the client knowingly purchased blueprints and other information containing trade secrets, as part of the process for manufacturing titanium dioxide. The firm’s successful IP litigation practice served as a springboard in obtaining an instruction from Megaupload founder Kim Dotcom, in its high-profile criminal copyright case pertaining to the alleged worldwide piracy of various copyrighted works; the DOJ cited the case as the largest of its kind in history. The group achieved a substantial victory for Schwab during a multi-regulator investigation concerning the sale of auction rate securities (ARS); the court was unable to show that any statement made by any of the company’s employees regarding ARS was false, and so no criminal charges were brought. A number of former prosecutors reside within the firm, and each has considerable trial expertise. Operating as a cohesive team out of multiple offices across the US, it includes the ‘excellent’ John Potter in San Francisco, Marc Greenwald in New York, James Asperger in Los Angeles, and William Burck in Washington DC.

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP’s ‘growing practice’ is ‘held in high regard’, and New York attorneys Mark Stein and Paul Curnin are awarded particular credit for their role in raising its profile. Representative of this ascendance is the firm’s recent role advising a global financial institution in two SEC investigations relating to its mortgage-backed securities business, and representing a major healthcare company in a DOJ antitrust investigation into allegations of collusion. Individuals also entrust the group on a regular basis; since 2008, it has assisted numerous officers and employees of Lehman Brothers in investigations by the SEC, FCIC, the Lehman Brothers Bankruptcy Examiner, and the SIPC Trustee. A senior executive from one of the world’s largest banks instructed the firm in DOJ investigations concerning allegations of money laundering, violation of OFAC sanctions, and Bank Secrecy Act violations; and it is representing the former general counsel of Bank of America in matters relating to its Merrill Lynch transaction. The team is also favored for matters relating to FCPA and tax fraud. Besides Stein and Curnin, Joshua Levine is a further key contact in New York, while in Washington DC, Peter Bresnan is the name to note. The group benefits from additional resources in Palo Alto and London.

Arnold & Porter LLP’s white-collar practice is contained within the wider litigation group, enabling access to an abundance of large corporate clients from the healthcare, financial and consumer products worlds. The white-collar team acts for a mix of individuals and companies, advising on such matters as government contracts, national security, tax, corporate law, and environmental law. The firm’s preeminence in antitrust is also advantageous. Its deep bench of experienced trial lawyers is utilized where necessary; it includes Marcus Asner, who has recently been representing a Fortune 500 company in an FCPA investigation involving activities in over fifteen countries. Previous highlights included acting for a South African financial institution in an FCPA investigation involving alleged bribery in a tender to provide payment services to South African social grant beneficiaries, and representing an IT company in a False Claims Act investigation. Another stalwart of the team is Craig Stewart, who is experienced in criminal appeals as well as white-collar defense. Both aforementioned are based in New York, while the Washington DC group includes Baruch Weiss.

Bracewell & Giuliani LLP is recommended for financial and securities-related white-collar defense, with clients citing the team’s ‘outstanding’ and ‘superb performance’ when it comes to ‘knowledge of the law, contacts, responsiveness and awareness of business issues’. In particular, lead partner Marc Mukasey and Washington DC-based Richard Beckler are ‘dedicated to clients’ interests’, and both are ‘deeply experienced’. Daniel Connolly and Craig Warkol are both ‘excellent and client focused’. The team’s profile has been on the rise lately, with high-profile instructions coming from Halliburton in federal criminal investigations arising out of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, and from Frank DiPascali, an executive from Madoff’s investment firm. It also represents former head executive of UBS’ municipal reinvestment desk Gary Heinz. Named attorneys are based in New York except where otherwise stated.

BuckleySandler LLP’s white-collar group is made up of a number of attorneys whose previous experience was gained from larger firms. It has proven to be adept when handling government enforcement matters, and has ‘a good name within financial services’, which is where it places the bulk of its focus. These ‘recognized experts’ are considered to be ‘lawyers of the highest integrity’, and the ‘overall level of service and value for money is excellent’. It represented John M Mushriqui in one of the more notable DOJ criminal FCPA investigations, and, following a four-month trial, all charges were dismissed. It also acted for the former controller of Fannie Mae, in internal and governmental investigations related to its 2004 restatement; summary judgement was recently granted and related class actions were dismissed. Currently, the group is representing former CEO of oil and gas outfit Noble Corp, in SEC litigation following an investigation into alleged FCPA violations in Nigeria. Washington DC-based David Krakoff (group head), Christopher Regan and James Parkinson are ‘all extremely bright and on top of changes in the law and government enforcement priorities’, and are ‘respected and trusted by government prosecutors’.

Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP handles the full range of white-collar matters, and has a ‘very strong FCPA bench’; within this space, it recently obtained settlements for Pfizer. It has considerable experience of securities-related matters, and recently achieved a "no action" for jewellery retailer Zale Corporation in an SEC investigation stemming from a 2009 restatement of more than $20m. CSC’s audit committee called upon the firm to conduct an internal investigation into its accounts, advice on related litigation, and in a separate investigation by the SEC. The recent addition of an energy group within the firm yields extra strength in this sector, and Peter Clark was recently part of a broader legal team defending a former Innospec agent for his role in a conspiracy to defraud the UN’s Oil-For-Food program. Raymond Banoun and Kenneth Wainstein head the group from its Washington DC hub, and additional lawyers are located in New York.

Clifford Chance recently welcomed David Raskin, Christopher Morvillo and Edward O’Callaghan; all three are former federal prosecutors, although Morvillo’s most recent role was at Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello P.C. and O’Callaghan’s at Nixon Peabody LLP. The team successfully defended an individual from GSC Group who led a collateral management team accused of allowing a hedge fund to choose risky securities for a $1.1bn CDO; the case, which was brought by the SEC, was subsequently dropped. Ongoing matters include defending Autonomy founder Michael Lynch against allegations of financial impropriety and misrepresentation made by Hewlett Packard - which acquired Lynch’s software company for $11bn - and advising a leading international private banking, wealth management, and custody bank on regulatory compliance and tax matters. Washington DC office managing partner David DiBari heads the group.

Cooley LLP handles a capacious range of issues within the white-collar space, and is comfortable representing the full range of clients, from banks, hedge funds and corporates, to individuals. This ‘breadth of experience is invaluable’, and the team has had some notable successes at trial lately, such as obtaining a complete acquittal for baseball player Roger Clemens in an obstruction of Congress and perjury case brought by the US Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. It also defended former AU Optronics president - a Taiwanese citizen - in a criminal antitrust trial over price-fixing in the thin-film transistor liquid crystal display (TFT-LCD) panel market. Ongoing matters include representing former Mayer Brown senior partner Joseph Collins in a criminal fraud case relating to the collapse of commodities broker Refco; the case has spawned civil litigation and the team has thus far shielded the client from any civil liability. William Schwartz heads the national practice from New York, where vice-chair Jonathan Bach is also based; both attorneys are ‘intelligent and diligent’, have the ‘appropriate combination of common sense and empathy’, and are ‘well respected by their peers’. Michael Attanasio in San Diego is also recommended, along with firm chairman Stephen Neal and John Dwyer in Palo Alto.

Washington DC-based firm Miller & Chevalier Chartered is deeply entrenched in the tax arena, a product of its origins as a specialist tax firm. Having expanded considerably since, its white-collar practice leverages off not just the criminal tax practice, but also the FCPA and international anti-corruption team, and the export controls and economic sanctions group. Representing both individuals and companies, the firm’s cross-border focus belies its size, and its burgeoning trial practice adds another string to its bow. Litigation chair Mark Rochon has conducted numerous internal investigations for corporates, and has a wealth of experience of FCPA, insider trading and various types of financial fraud. David Resnicoff is a choice adviser for regulatory advice within the healthcare sector, and the recruitment of Kevin Downing from the tax division of the DOJ was a coup; Downing focuses on advising international companies on government enforcement and compliance. Barbara Linney is recommended for matters relating to export control, and has a strong core of defense sector clients.

Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP bolstered its practice with some key new recruits, namely G Derek Andreson and William Sullivan Jr from Winston & Strawn LLP. Sullivan, a former federal prosecutor, is ‘highly respected by his peers in the legal community’ and ‘has a strong commitment to his clients and their best interests’. The firm is heavily involved in various FCPA cases for international clients, and also has a strong contingent of both securities fraud and antitrust experts within its fold. The team is ‘extremely knowledgeable, intelligent, informed and experienced’, and provides ‘insightful views’. It is currently being instructed by the American subsidiary of Japanese company N I Teijin Shoji in multiple federal and state False Claims Act investigations (including qui tam actions) alleging fraud in the procurement of bullet-proof vests by state, local, and the federal governments. Gibson Guitar is a high-profile client; it called upon the firm when the DOJ and US Fish and Wildlife Service investigated alleged violations of the Lacey Act pertaining to the importation of exotic hardwoods. New York co-chair Mark Hellerer is a renowned trial lawyer whose practice covers trade sanctions and SEC investigations, as well as allegations of bid rigging of tax-exempt bonds, and antitrust issues. Thomas Hill is also recommended. All named lawyers are based in Washington DC except where otherwise stated.

Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP is highly rated by clients for its ‘exceptional service levels’ and ‘subject matter expertise that is of the highest quality’. Already a credible player, it was given a further boost in 2013 by the arrival of Barry Bohrer, a former name partner of popular boutique Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello P.C.. However, this was shortly preceded by the departure of Richard Morvillo who left to form Morvillo Law. Bohrer is located in the New York office, while the Washington, DC office includes the ‘exceptionalPeter White. Meanwhile, the New York office is home to talented attorneys such as litigation co-chair Martin Perschetz and Sung-Hee Suh. The firm represents various financial organizations both in the US and abroad, and has a number of household names on its roster. Areas of expertise include anti-money laundering, OFAC, antitrust, FCPA, tax and public corruption, and it was recently instructed by Banca Privada d’Andorra (BPA), following the seizure by the DOJ of over $6m of the company’s own funds from its interbank accounts in the US. Other mandates included acting for two Cayman Islands-based investment funds, in SEC enforcement proceedings over an alleged Ponzi scheme.

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  • Austria/Malta: Schoenherr advises Oesterreichische Volksbanken on sale of Volksbank Malta

    Schoenherr, a leading corporate law firm in Central and Eastern Europe, advised Österreichische Volksbanken-AG (OeVAG) on the sale of its fully-owned subsidiary Volksbank Malta Limited to Malta-based Mediterranean Bank plc. On 11 April 2014, OeVAG and Mediterranean Bank signed a Share Purchase Agreement for 100% of the shares in Volksbank Malta. Closing shall take place after the required approvals of the relevant regulatory bodies are received. read more...
  • Austria: Stefan Kuehteubl new head of Employment practice at Schoenherr

    Stefan Kuehteubl will join Schoenherr, a leading corporate law firm in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), as a partner and the head of the firm's Employment practice as of July 2014. A highly-regarded employment law practitioner, Kuehteubl will be returning to Schoenherr, where he previously worked as a member of its employment team between 1999 and 2004. During the past ten years, he worked in a well-known Vienna-based employment law boutique, in which he was a partner since 2008. read more...
  • Proud to continue charitable donations in 2014

  • New Swiss Law on Product Safety

    The Swiss law on product safety ( Produktesicherheitsgesetz, PrSG) is currently scheduled to enter into force on July 1, 2010. This new law aligns Swiss product safety requirements with EU law. It applies not only to manufacturers, but to anyone who commercially or professionally markets products in Switzerland, and it introduces substantial new obligations before and after the sale of a product.
  • Chambers Global has once again recognised Pepeliaev Group's tax practice as the best in Russia

    The Chambers Global 2014 international ratings have hailed Pepeliaev Group's tax practice and the firm's managing partner Sergey Pepeliaev as Russia's best in the area of taxation (band 1 and Star Individuals). Commentators describe Mr Pepeliaev as "the father of Russian taxation." He has an outstanding reputation in tax litigation, for which he is said to be "absolutely brilliant." In addition, Chambers Global  lavishes praise on Rustem Ahmetshin (band 2), one of the firm's senior partners, who has considerable expertise in areas such as VAT and audit advice. Chambers Global sources commend Pepeliaev Group partner Valentina Akimova (band 3) as a "smart tax specialist." She has significant experience in a wide range of tax matters such as VAT, income tax and excise duties. Sources recommend Andrey Nikonov (band 3), another senior partner in the firm, as an authority on VAT, mineral extraction tax and unified social tax.  Chambers Global also rates Mr Nikonov highly for his experience in resolving tax disputes advising on the tax aspects of M&A transactions.

    Dhir & Dhir Associates advised National Housing Bank, wholly owned by Reserve Bank of India, on the Tranche- II of public issue of tax free bonds in the nature of secured, redeemable, non-convertible debentures with benefits under Section 10(15)(iv)(h) of the Income Tax Act, 1961, aggregating upto Rs. 1,000 Crore.

    In a recent landmark judgment of the Hon'ble Andhra Pradesh High Court in the matter of Deccan Chronicle Holdings Ltd. (DCHL) & Ors. Vs. Union of India & Ors ., the Hon'ble Court has laid down an important principal of law to the effect that SARFAESI Action can be taken by an assignee/ successor in interest only if the original lender had SARFAESI power.

    Dhir & Dhir Associates advised National Housing Bank, wholly owned by Reserve Bank of India, on the public issue of tax free bonds in the nature of secured, redeemable, non-convertible debentures with benefits under Section 10(15)(iv)(h) of the Income Tax Act, 1961, aggregating upto Rs. 2,100 Crore.
  • Angel Buzalov from “Popov & Partners” has participated in “Legal Day 2014”of GBICC

    On 20.03.2014 was carried the first part of the annually organized forum "Legal Day" of German-Bulgarian Industrial Commercial Chamber. Representatives of the leading legal companies in Bulgaria and industry representatives also took part in the event.
  • “Popov & Partners” took part in the consultations organized by the German-Bulgarian Industrial C

    On 24.03.2014 a meeting of the Advisory Board "Law" of the German-Bulgarian Industrial Commercial Chamber (GBICC) was held. The event was attended by representatives of the business as well as lawyers from major law firms in Bulgaria, including the law firm "Popov & Partners."