The Legal 500

Arent Fox LLP

1717 K STREET, NW, WASHINGTON DC 20036-5342, USA
Work +1 202 857 6000
Fax +1 202 857 6395

United States

Top-tier recommendations


  • United States: Real estate and construction > Construction
  • United States: Real estate and construction > Real estate

United States: Finance

Within Corporate restructuring (including bankruptcy), tier 6

Widely considered to be ‘among the best for distressed local government work and Chapter 9 bankruptcies’, Arent Fox LLP also has a strong corporate practice that continues to gain in profile. Lawyers are praised for their ‘highly professional and commercial approach to the law’ and New York-based Andrew Silfen heads a national team that includes Mette Kurth, who is recommended for ‘anticipating the next step beautifully’. In a major coup, the firm was instructed to represent the creditors’ committee in the $5.8bn bankruptcy of Cengage Learning.

[back to top]

Within Municipal bankruptcy, Arent Fox LLP is a first tier firm,

With an ‘outstanding track record’ in Chapter 9 and Chapter 11 cases, Arent Fox LLP has been a ubiquitous presence amid the US’ recent wave of municipal bankruptcies. An additional strength is its specialist expertise in municipal bonds, tax-exempt bond financing, new market tax credits, and local tax subsidies. New York-based David Dubrow is ‘a great lawyer’, ‘very active’, and highly regarded for his creditor work; he continues to act for Ambac Assurance Corporation (Ambac) in the City of Detroit’s Chapter 9 proceedings; the client, which insures $171m of Detroit’s general obligation debt, opposed the City’s cease on payments on $2bn in unsecured debt. Dubrow also acted alongside LA-based Mette Kurth for Wells Fargo and Ambac in restructuring San Bernardino’s bond debt, in a matter which has not reached court proceedings. Dubrow is also acting alongside Carol Connor Cohen and Caroline Turner English in protecting Ambac’s interests in various other national public and municipal restructurings.

[back to top]

Within Not-for-profit, Arent Fox LLP is a third tier firm,

Arent Fox LLP’s 15-lawyer team sits across New York, Washington DC and Los Angeles, within the firm’s ‘strong’ tax practice. It is ‘really one of the national go to-places for non-profit real estate issues’ and DC-based lawyer and practice head, the ‘outstanding’ Richard Newman, is particularly recommended in this field. The team is distinguished by its ‘standout’ public finance capabilities and the healthcare sector has traditionally been an area of strength for the firm. Other areas of focus include political and advocacy issues affecting exempt organizations, including electoral law requirements. Recent clients include the American Psychological Association, the AAMC and Sidwell Friends School.

[back to top]

United States: Industry focus

Within Healthcare: service providers, tier 4

Arent Fox LLP’s healthcare capacity spans its New York, Washington DC, Los Angeles and San Francisco offices. Michael Anderson, based in the capital, has been assisting longstanding client Sunrise Senior Living on various state-by-state regulatory issues, and assisted the same client in its $844m acquisition by Healthcare REIT in 2012. Further demonstrating its credentials in long-term care, Michael Blass and Jill Steinberg, both based in New York, have been assisting Fundamental Long Term Care on its joint venture with a Nevada-based hospital system. The firm continues to assist Broward Health with ongoing False Claims Act and Stark Law-related government investigations, where Linda Baumann is leading the advice. Los Angeles-based Lowell Brown heads the department, with all other lawyers named based in Washington DC unless otherwise stated.

[back to top]

Within Sport, Arent Fox LLP is a third tier firm,

Arent Fox LLP’s group is led by Richard Brand, who is singled out for his ‘wealth of knowledge and experience’ in sports matters and who, in May 2013, relocated to the firm’s new office in San Francisco. That new office has drawn the practice closer to its existing West Coast clients, which include the Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Kings and AEG. Television media deals, media rights and sponsorship agreements generate a significant stream of instructions for the 34-strong group, which has also developed a leading practice in professional sports franchise acquisitions. It represented the San Francisco 49ers in a high-value naming rights and sponsorship transaction with Levi Strauss & Co. It also advised the NHL’s New York Islanders on the franchise’s relocation to the Barclays Center; and acted for Tennis Channel on rights agreements with the USTA. New York-based Matthew Pace is another name to note.

[back to top]

United States: Intellectual property

Within Copyright, tier 5

Arent Fox LLP’s Paul Fakler and Ross Charap, both based in New York, act for content and rights owners on copyright licensing, transactional, regulatory and litigation matters, with particular experience in the music industry sector. The practice has been acting for Music Choice in royalty rate-setting litigation, advising Adage Classics on the acquisition and sale of song catalogs as well as representing the heirs of Aldous Huxley on negotiating publishing arrangements. It has also been defending MediaNet against alleged copyright infringement claims brought by music artist Aimee Mann in relation to the client’s streaming of the plaintiff’s songs on its digital music service. Anthony Lupo advises clients such as Diesel, Discovery Communications and Pixar. Other key clients include HBO and Mars.

[back to top]

Within Trademarks: non-contentious (full coverage), Arent Fox LLP is a second tier firm,

Operating mainly from Washington DC, Arent Fox LLP’s team advises on the acquisition and commercial exploitation of IP rights and assets. It has particular strength in the media and entertainment sectors, including TV and film, and fashion; and the food and hospitality industry is another area of expertise. Ricard Fischer heads the group, which includes the highly respected Anthony Lupo, who regularly oversees trademarks and global branding initiatives for Discovery Communications. The firm assists Warner Bros in the protection of its trademarks and also manages Burger King’s extensive worldwide portfolio, handling the full range of work from brand development to protection and enforcement. Well-regarded litigator Michael Grow is active for clients in the entertainment industry.

[back to top]

United States: Labor and employment

Within Employee benefits and executive compensation, tier 5

Arent Fox LLP is a hit with clients owing to its team of ‘exceptional problem solvers’. The group is known for its expertise in fixing broken employee benefit plans. Clients include Choice Hotels and Par Pharmaceutical. The team practices in highly technical areas and has the ‘ability to understand clients’ needs and provide practical advice from a business standpoint’. Group head Quana Jew and William Charyk, both in Washington DC, are considered by some to be the ‘best in the business’.

[back to top]

Within ERISA litigation, tier 4

Arent Fox LLPprovides the highest level of service possible in complex litigation, so the value received for the fees charged is phenomenal’. Clients report feeling ‘confident in and satisfied with their guidance’. The firm is known for its expertise at the intersection of employee benefits and bankruptcy, and for its handling of ERISA issues in the context of class action defense. Clients include the Official Committee of Retired Employees of Eastman Kodak Company and the ESOP Committee of The SCOOTER Store. Carol Connor Cohen is ‘an outstanding attorney’, Caroline Turner English is ‘excellent’, and Nancy Heermans is also recommended; all are based in Washington DC.

[back to top]

United States: Litigation

Within International trade, Arent Fox LLP is a third tier firm,

Noted for its ‘excellent and accurate advice’, Matthew Nolan’s Washington DC-based team at Arent Fox LLP continues to enjoy market share in traditional trade litigation. The firm’s recent record includes acting for NatureSweet in an ongoing trade dispute over imports of Mexican tomatoes; and securing victory for CP-Kelco at the US International Trade Commission in an anti-dumping duty petition over the import of xanthan gum from Austria and China. The team is also an active force in export controls, economic sanctions, and anti-boycott compliance. David Hamill, who ‘goes out of his way to keep his clients informed’, is advising meat and food company Hillshire Brands on import and export compliance matters. Also well known in the field are Nolan and Kay Georgi, who assist clients such as National Oilwell Varco, G4S International and TRW. John Gurley, Matthew Clark and Matthew Kanna are also recommended.

[back to top]

Within Leading trial lawyers Leading trial lawyers

[back to top]

United States: Media, technology and telecoms

Within Telecoms and broadcast: regulatory, Arent Fox LLP is a third tier firm,

Arent Fox LLP’s 12-strong telecoms group in Washington DC typically represents the market’s pioneers and innovators; it has a particular focus on advising startups, assisting them with mobile issues and handling government relations. Litigation accounts for about 60% of the practice, with the rest split evenly between regulatory and transactional work. Group leader Ross Buntrock regularly advises the App Developers Alliance and other trade associations, and he recently defended new client Jesta Digital (formerly known as Fox Mobile Group) against four challenges alleging violation of the TCPA; one was successfully defeated, one was settled, and two are ongoing. Michael Hazzard is advising Australian company LeadBolt, Alan Fishel continues to advise not-for-profit organization Internet2, Stephanie Joyce is assisting IntelePeer with issues regarding regulatory compliance matters and FCC policy proceedings. Jonathan Canis is also recommended. Other key clients of the group include CallFire, DecisionQ, the Mobile Internet Content Coalition, the American Library Association, The Conference Group and Twilio.

[back to top]

Within Telecoms and broadcast: transactional, Arent Fox LLP is a third tier firm,

Arent Fox LLP’s 12-lawyer practice in Washington DC is led by Ross Buntrock. It typically represents smaller carriers and start-ups in negotiations with content providers (as well as in disputes with the large telecoms operators and incumbents). Particular strengths of the group are advising on mobile marketing issues, including TCPA legislation and FTC investigations into consumer advertising and the development of application programming interfaces (APIs). Michael Hazzard’s key active clients include cloud communications company Twilio and Australian mobile advertising company LeadBolt. Stephanie Joyce is transactional counsel for DecisionQ, creator of mathematical programs for data analysis and predictive modeling. Alan Fishel represents Internet2 and, together with Jonathan Canis, is advising new client the American Library Association. Other clients include Securus Technologies, IntelePeer and the Application Developers Alliance.

[back to top]

United States: Mergers, acquisitions and buyouts

Within M&A: middle-market (sub-$500m), tier 4

Arent Fox LLP is ‘extremely knowledgeable, competent, practical and responsive’, and stands out for its strength in sports and hotels/hospitality, as well as acting for clients in areas such as technology, manufacturing, entertainment, consumer products, pharmaceuticals, healthcare and government contracts. The team advised Hi Tech Pharmacal on its $640m merger agreement with generic drugmaker Akorn Pharmaceuticals; acted for RapidAdvance on its $100m sale to Detroit-based Rockbridge Growth Equity; assisted Climax Metal Products Company, an industrial components manufacturer for the transmission industry and the maintenance, repair and operations markets, on its sale to RBC Bearings; assisted private equity firm RLJ Equity Partners on the acquisition of R Thompson Trucking from Capital Partners; and acted for Paladin on its public merger with Resource Real Estate Opportunity REIT, both entities being SEC-registered, non-traded REITs. Washington DC-based corporate and securities group head Steven Cohen, Amy Donnelly and Deborah Froling are highly rated, with Froling noted for her ‘industry knowledge and creative problem solving, which are second to none’. Richard Gale, Jay Halpern, Carter Strong and Jeffrey Jordan, an ‘experienced and thorough practitioner’, also attract praise.

[back to top]

United States: Real estate and construction

Within Construction, tier 4

Arent Fox LLP provides ‘efficient and economical service’ through its integrated and full-service three-partner team, which handles litigation and transactional matters for owners, developers, architecture and design firms, contractors and public authorities. Contentious matters comprise the bulk of the workload, although the practice has experienced an uptick in construction-related M&A at a domestic and international level. Other areas of expertise include drafting and negotiating broad construction management contracts and green building projects. Practice head James Frankel is ‘one of the finest lawyers in New York City specializing in design, construction and real estate matters’, and seasoned litigator Mark Bloom is commended for his ‘good industry experience’. They are leading advice to Nuprecon on the $1.8bn renovation of the United Nations site in New York. On the transactional front, Andrew Ross is handling Tishman Speyer’s construction portfolio.

[back to top]

Within Real estate, Arent Fox LLP is a third tier firm,

Arent Fox LLP’s ‘exceptional’ group has more than 40 real estate lawyers across Washington DC and New York, and has now expanded into San Francisco. It is recommended for its experience in real estate acquisitions, finance, and dispositions across the country. Goldman Sachs has instructed it on a number of investment and financing activities, including the $1.56bn acquisition and financing of multi-family assets from Equity Residential; the work was led by Mark Katz (‘excellent for real estate finance’), Eleanor Zappone and Dan Kirsch. David Dubrow was the key lawyer advising Fannie Mae on the $7bn loan restructuring of the Archstone portfolio. Other highlights included advising Forest City Ratner Companies on the development of 8 Spruce Street (aka Beekman Tower), a 76-story, commercial mixed-use construction project in Manhattan; the matter was led by Karen Candreva. The firm is also noted for its expertise in the hospitality and leisure sector and has recently acted for Marriott International and its affiliates on a variety of transactions including the development of Marriott hotels in Manhattan and Miami Beach; these were led by the ‘brilliant’ Kimberly Wachen. The firm was also instructed by Quadrangle Development Corporation on the development of the $520m Washington Convention Center headquarters hotel and also represented the client in the $400m sale of the Grand Hyatt hotel to Host Hotels & Resorts, led by Michael Leahy and Thomas Castiello. Department head Kenneth Jacob is ‘an excellent real estate attorney’ and is particularly noted for his experience in the healthcare and senior living sector alongside Wachen. Richard Newman has ‘strong expertise’ in tax-exempt bond financing and David Martin ‘consistently delivers exceptional service’.

[back to top]

Legal Developments worldwide

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to
  • The Constitutional Court abolished the Article 16/5 of the Decree Law numbered 556

    The Constitutional Court abolished the Article 16/5 of the Decree Law numbered 556.
  • Assignment of Trademarks and Licensing of Trademarks in Turkey

    I. Introduction
  • Austria: Amendments to Chemicals Act and Biocidal Products Act

    On March 5 2015 Austria's agriculture, forestry, environment and water economics minister presented a draft law to amend the Chemicals Act and the Biocidal Products Act. The proposed amendments are the last steps towards the final standardisation of the classification, labelling and packaging of substances and mixtures in accordance with EU Regulation 1272/2008 (the 'CPL Regulation'). The amendments simplify the term 'toxin' and shift the existing toxin purchase permit system to a simplified system of toxin purchase certificates. Read more...
  • Poland: Traders' Obligations under the New Consumers Protection Act

    The new consumers protection act (" Act ") which came into force on 25 December 2014 changed the obligations that traders (entrepreneurs) have with regard to the execution of sales contracts with consumers (relating to both goods and services) and warranty rules relating to the provided goods. read more...
  • Tax Legislation Overhaul Proposed in the Republic of Srpska

    Significant changes to the tax regulations in the Republic of Srpska (“RS”) are expected in the coming months. On March 6, the National Assembly of RS passed amendments to the Law on Fiscal Cash Registries. In addition, Parliament approved the Government’s proposals on amendments to several important tax laws, including corporate income tax, personal income tax, social security contributions and property tax. Proposed changes to the laws governing accounting and financial audits have also been approved. These changes are intended to clarify and strengthen existing tax rules, widen the tax base and introduce more discipline in the payment of tax, but also to reduce the tax burden for businesses in order to stimulate economic growth.
  • Careless limit values threaten the Mining Industry

    By lawyer/partner Pia Pehrson and associates Pelle Stubelius and Ludvig Gustafson, Foyen Advokatfirma
  • Wage moderation - The Act providing the new remuneration margin has been published

    On Thursday 30 April 2015, the Act establishing the maximum margin for the evolution of remuneration costs for 2015 and 2016 was published in the Belgian Official Gazette and entered into force.
  • Installment Sales

    The Regulation About Installment Sales ( "The Regulation" ) entered into force by being published in the Official Gazette on 14 th  January 2015. Although the title is 'installment sales'; the main subject of the Regulation is financial leasing agreements. It is important to be careful not to confuse the installment sales with the prepaid sales. In prepaid sales the buyer have the possession of the sold movable property after completing the payment. However in installment sales the buyer gets the property immediately and then makes the payment. Moreover the sales made by credit cards are not the subject of this Regulation.
  • Protection of Creditors and Employees and Personal Liabilities of Shareholders in Mergers

    Synergies and increase in the assets of the merging companies are aimed at mergers. However, a merger may at the same time result in the increase of the liabilities of the merging companies. Further, in some cases the financial standing of the absorbed company in a merger may not even show positive figures thus such a merger may present a potential risk on the creditors of especially the surviving company. Due to the fact that creditors of the merging entities do not have a veto right against a merger, there arises the need for a specific protection tool for the creditors. A merger may also negatively affect the employees of the merging entities, again especially the ones of the absorbed company. On the other hand, "over-protection" may defeat the purpose of the merger concept so a fairly balanced protection mechanics is essential. This article focuses on the means of protection of creditors and employees, and personal liabilities of shareholders in mergers, as regulated by the Turkish Commercial Code ("TCC").
  • The Gas Pipelines, the Cold War and the Black Sea Region

    Since the end of the Cold War, the Black Sea region has gained even greater political and economic importance and has become the subject of a dominance battle between world powers including the United States of America, Russia and the most influential member states of the European Union. While these world powers battle for dominance, local players such as Turkey and Ukraine have also gained importance and have used their geopolitical position to promote themselves as key international policy players.