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Covington & Burling LLP

THE NEW YORK TIMES BUILDING, 620 EIGHTH AVENUE, NEW YORK, NY 10018, USA
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Top-tier Firm rankings

Firm Rankings

Firm Rankings


United States: Antitrust

Cartel
Cartel - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP has an outstanding track record in global cartel investigations and associated follow-on actions, including those concerning automotive parts, air cargo and power cables. Michael Fanelli has had a key role in the majority of the firm’s cartel matters since 1996. Thomas Barnett and Deborah Garza previously held leadership positions at the Antitrust Division of the US Department of Justice (DOJ), while San Francisco’s Phillip Warren headed the Antitrust Division’s field office in San Francisco for 12 years. Lanny Breuer, Mythili Raman and Bruce Baird are other names to note in the team.

Leading lawyers

Phillip Warren - Covington & Burling LLP

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Civil litigation/class actions
Civil litigation/class actions - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s antitrust litigation practice, which is co-chaired by Derek Ludwin in Washington DC and Emily Henn in Palo Alto, has a strong reputation for cutting-edge, highly complex matters, and draws work from clients in sectors such as technology, financial services and pharmaceuticals. Ludwin, Gregg Levy and others recently represented the National Football League in two class actions, one of which involved defending the client in multi-district litigation (MDL) concerning its television broadcasting arrangements. In the auto parts arena, Anita Stork (San Francisco), Ashley Bass, Michael Fanelli and others are acting for Alps Electric in a putative class action concerning alleged price-fixing of heater control panels. In addition to managing cases heard domestically, the US group operates as part of a wider network to assist with cross-border matters, including litigation that is connected to government investigations. Thomas Barnett, Deborah Garza and Robert Wick are other highly regarded practitioners. Named attorneys are based in Washington DC except where otherwise indicated.

Leading lawyers

Deborah Garza - Covington & Burling LLP

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Merger control
Merger control - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP handles merger control work for clients from a wide variety of industries, particularly in the life sciences arena. James Dean recently worked with members of the Brussels office to handle a series of Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) reportable transactions for AstraZeneca. In another highlight, Deborah Garza and San Francisco-based Phillip Warren handled the antitrust aspects of ArcLight Energy Partners Fund VI’s acquisition of Gulf Oil from Cumberland Farms. Thomas Barnett acts for clients such as Disney, Expedia and Eli Lilly. James O’Connell, James Dean and John Graubert are also recommended. Named attorneys are based in Washington DC except where indicated otherwise.

Leading lawyers

Deborah Garza - Covington & Burling LLP

Thomas Barnett - Covington & Burling LLP

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United States: Dispute resolution

Appellate: Supreme Court (federal and state)
Appellate: Supreme Court (federal and state) - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

Appellate: courts of appeals - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Robert Long, John Hall and Mark Mosier lead the appellate practice at Covington & Burling LLP. Paul Schmidt, George Pappas and San Francisco-based Clara Shin defended Autodesk before the Federal Circuit in patent infringement proceedings brought by East Coast Sheet Metal Fabricating Corp seeking $800m in damages. Other highlights included serving as co-counsel with Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP to Microsoft in an appeal brought by the US government in the Second Circuit challenging the lack of extraterritoriality of search warrants under the Electronic Communications Privacy Act; the decision effectively barred the government during criminal investigations from accessing emails stored on servers abroad. The group filed an amicus brief on behalf of financial trade associations, including the American Bankers Association, in Spokeo v Robins. Former Deputy Assistant Attorney General Beth Brinkmann joined the Washington DC office.

Leading lawyers

Robert Long - Covington & Burling LLP

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Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense
Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP is a ‘strong’ firm with an excellent reputation for FCPA work and an impressive track record in representing pharmaceutical sector clients. Nancy Kestenbaum in New York and Ethan Posner in Washington DC chair the practice and key partners in the latter office include Lanny Breuer, Mythili Raman and former US Attorney General Eric Holder. Clients have included oil exploration company Hyperdynamics, Valeant Pharmaceuticals, Gilead Sciences and the former chairman of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

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International arbitration
International arbitration - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s ‘expert’ department is ‘a team to be used on critical and complex arbitrations’, and is particularly praised for its ‘remarkable’ cross-firm collaboration. The group is lead counsel for subsidiaries of Tidewater in an ICSID arbitration arising out of the expropriation of certain investments in Venezuela and is also representing Ukraine on a state-to-state dispute with Russia heard under the United Nations Convention of the Law of the Sea. It is also acting for Eli Lilly & Company on a NAFTA investment treaty arbitration against Canada. Marney Cheek and Allan Moore head the team, which includes the ‘detail-orientatedMiguel López Forastier and New York key contact David Pinsky. Named lawyers are based in Washington DC unless stated otherwise.

Next generation lawyers

David Pinsky - Covington & Burling LLP

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International trade
International trade - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Led out of its Washington DC headquarters by Stuart Eizenstat and Peter Lichtenbaum, Covington & Burling LLP’s team provides ‘savvy and sophisticated advice’ that is mindful of both legal and policy concerns. Benefiting from the experience of numerous former high-ranking government officials, including Eizenstat, former US ambassador to the EU, and John Veroneau, a former deputy US trade representative (USTR), the team has ‘excellent connections with all the major players in DC’ and is ‘absolutely superb on trade policy issues’. Praised for its ‘ability to anticipate government concerns’, the team is also a top choice for advice to domestic and international corporates on their trade strategies and in the context of economic sanctions and export controls, where the ‘terrificPeter Flanagan stands out. Corinne Goldstein has ‘a keen understanding of the various regulatory regimes’ and is particularly accomplished at advising clients on the sanctions programs administered by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). Led by David Fagan and Mark Plotkin, the firm’s Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) practice is recognized as ‘among the very best for managing national security issues in very sensitive matters’. In a deal which attracted intense scrutiny, Fagan and Plotkin advised NXP Semiconductors on the $2.7bn sale of its Standard Products business to Chinese government-owned funds. The pair also secured clearance for Altice pertaining to the $9.1bn acquisition of Suddenlink and $17.7bn acquisition of Cablevision. The team is rounded out by counsel Shara Aranoff and Alexander Chinoy on the customs front, and Steve Fagell and Donald Ridings, who jointly head the anti-corruption sub group.

Leading lawyers

Peter Flanagan - Covington & Burling LLP

Peter Lichtenbaum - Covington & Burling LLP

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Product liability, mass tort and class action: pharmaceuticals and medical devices - defense
Product liability, mass tort and class action: pharmaceuticals and medical devices - defense - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Historically known for its strong pharmaceuticals and medical devices practice, Covington & Burling LLP’s Washington DC-based team often advises on strategic issues. Michael Imbroscio, Paul Schmidt and Phyllis Jones obtained summary judgment and termination of 1,225 cases in the Mirena IUD MDL for Bayer, with Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP as co-counsel. Imbroscio, Jones and San Francisco-based Jeffrey Davidson have been serving as national counsel to Eli Lilly in litigation concerning erectile dysfunction drug Cialis. Imbroscio, Schmidt and Shankar Duraiswamy defended Genentech in the company’s first product liability suit regarding its Lucentis eye treatment product. The team includes Keith Teel and Raymond Biagini.

Next generation lawyers

Phyllis Jones - Covington & Burling LLP

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Securities litigation: defense
Securities litigation: defense - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP has ‘an excellent litigation department with very knowledgeable lawyers who are highly experienced but also quick learners’. The firm has ‘great instincts for how judges and opposing counsel will react’. In New York, Mark Gimbel (who is ‘a great listener and his thoughtful approach is of great value’) and William Phillips chair the practice. They are handling a motion to dismiss a class action against SandRidge Energy CEO James Bennett that alleges misrepresentation of the value of oil and gas assets. David Kornblau, Nancy Kestenbaum, Washington DC-based Bruce Baird and San Francisco’s Tammy Albarrán are noted for government investigations and litigation. Gimbel and Robert Wick are advising JPMorgan Securities in an MDL alleging collusion to manipulate the market for US Treasury securities.

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United States: Finance

Capital markets: debt offerings
Capital markets: debt offerings - advice to issuers - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

Capital markets: debt offerings - advice to underwriters - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

Standing out for its ‘high-level professionalism’, Covington & Burling LLP’s service standards and value for money are highlighted as ‘equal to the top-tier firms’. New York-based Donald Murray chairs the group and advised Goodyear on three significant debt transactions including a $1bn senior notes offering. New York-based vice-chair Eric Blanchard is ‘very proactive with deep knowledge of securities law’; he advised Johnson & Johnson on two offerings of investment grade debt securities worth $7.5bn and €4bn respectively. In Washington DC, Michael Riella assisted HealthSouth with a $350m senior notes offering and a private placement of $350m of senior notes. Also in Washington DC, Kerry Burke is another key name in this ‘small group with big experience, knowledge and confidence’.

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Capital markets: equity offerings
Capital markets: equity offerings - advice to underwriters - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s equity practice specializes in underwriter-side mandates. The firm continues to secure a significant amount of work in the life sciences sector but also routinely handles deals in other regulated industries such as healthcare and financial services. From New York, Donald Murray heads the group and acted for Jefferies and Baird in Exact Sciences’ $145m follow-on offering. Department vice-chair Eric Blanchard is also recommended in New York and advised Jefferies and Barclays on a $42m follow-on offering by Alcobra. Among the team’s work for issuers, Washington DC-based Kerry Burke acted for Omeros during its $40m offering of common stock. Washington DC-based vice-chair Keir Gumbs is also a key name.

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Financial services regulation
Financial services regulation - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Led by former Comptroller of the Currency John Dugan, Covington & Burling LLP’s Washington DC-based team provides ‘pragmatic and insightful’ advice to clients on compliance issues related to the wave of regulations that have been ushered in since the credit crisis, as well as on the regulatory aspects of transactions within the industry. Dugan regularly counsels major trade associations on the implications of new legislation affecting the industry and is also adept at helping them respond to potential changes through comment letters; he recently advised the Futures Industry Association on the Basel Committee’s proposals regarding the treatment of segregated margin in leverage ratio calculations. Ed Yingling represents Wells Fargo across a broad range of legislative issues, including housing finance, the Dodd-Frank Act, and bank capital and liquidity requirements. Mark Plotkin and Michael Nonaka have significant fintech expertise and are representing American Express in various financial regulatory projects, including unclaimed property, financial privacy and consumer reporting. The team also includes the vastly experienced senior counsel Stuart Stock - who remains active across a range of strategic bank regulatory matters - in addition to Andrew Smith and Eric Mogilnicki, who co-head the consumer finance practice. Keith Noreika joined Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP in August 2016.

Leading lawyers

John Dugan - Covington & Burling LLP

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Not-for-profit (nonprofit and tax exempt organizations)
Not-for-profit (nonprofit and tax exempt organizations) - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

The Washington DC-based political tax and tax-exempt organizations practice at Covington & Burling LLP has a long history of advising nonprofits on all aspects of their work. Clients include political organizations, sports leagues, trade associations, educational institutions, philanthropic and grant-making organizations, and museums. The firm also works for a number of pro bono clients, such as Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and various non-partisan research organizations and legislative advocacy groups supporting marriage equality. Key names include Robert Gage, Heather Haberl, Susan Leahy, Jeremy Spector and Stuart Irvin.

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United States: Government

Government contracts
Government contracts - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

The ‘very responsive and pragmatic’ team at Covington & Burling LLP is ‘incredibly efficient’, ‘always willing to go the extra mile’ and renowned for its sector expertise in life sciences, healthcare and biodefense. Raymond Biagini led the successful representation of KBR in litigation seeking to recover from the government over $30m of legal fees incurred through tort cases concerning an oil restoration services contract. The ‘strategicJason Carey is ‘excellent at explaining complex issues simply’ and recently led the representation of Optum in protesting the award of a care coordination services contract to a competitor, achieving the reopening of the competition. Scott Freling is ‘always up to date with the latest trends in the industry’ and frequently handles government contractor transactions, such as advising Lindsay Goldberg on selling PAE to Platinum Equity, while the ‘business-savvySusan Cassidy is experienced advising contractors on cybersecurity requirements, particularly in the defense and intelligence sectors. Frederic Levy and Jennifer Plitsch chair the group, which also includes Alan Pemberton and the newly added Peter Hutt II, who joined from Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP in February 2016.

Next generation lawyers

Scott Freling - Covington & Burling LLP

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Government relations
Government relations - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s public policy and government affairs group has outstanding international reach, particularly due to its close cooperation with Brussels-based practitioners. On the US level, the group advised the Protect Trade Secrets Coalition on drafting legislative language and winning over Congress regarding the creation of a federal cause of action for companies to protect their trade secrets, and the provision of remedies for companies whose trade secrets are misappropriated. On behalf of Microsoft, the team regularly handles a multitude of subjects, including data storage, cybersecurity, immigration and tax. Roger Zakheim, who stands out for aerospace and defense work, led advocacy for BAE Systems’ ground vehicle priorities in defense authorization and appropriation bills. Of counsel Brian Smith is highly rated for congressional investigations, while Holly Fechner, John Veroneau, Eric Holder, of counsel Muftiah McCartin and senior of counsel Daniel Spiegel are also recommended. Margaret Richardson left to work in-house.

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United States: Industry focus

Energy litigation: oil and gas
Energy litigation: oil and gas - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

The team at Covington & Burling LLP, which is jointly led by TL Cubbage and Steven Rosenbaum, is best known for representing oil and gas industry players in national and international disputes, including high-stakes arbitration proceedings against commercial counterparties and foreign governments. The team represented BP and various subsidiaries and affiliates in a range of cases and contexts arising from the Deepwater Horizon accident and its resulting oil spill. Most recently, the practice represented the oil and gas company in various aspects of the multi-stage bench trial and related proceedings regarding BP’s civil liability under admiralty law and the Clean Water Act. In arbitration, Cubbage and Miguel López Forastier represented certain subsidiaries of ExxonMobil as the claimant in an ICSID investor-state arbitration against Venezuela arising from uncompensated expropriation of the entirety of the claimants’ investments in Venezuela.

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Energy regulatory: conventional power
Energy regulatory: conventional power - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

With a practice including a former FERC commissioner and a former NRC chairman, Covington & Burling LLP is well equipped to guide its clients through the regulatory framework, leveraging the firm’s finance and transactional know-how as necessary. The team routinely handles FERC and NERC compliance work and contentious FERC representations, such as rate cases and electricity refund proceedings. The team, headed by senior counsel William Massey, also represents companies in non-public FERC natural gas and electricity enforcement and compliance investigations, and defends clients against market manipulation and tariff violation claims. James Dean is another key contact.

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Energy regulatory: oil and gas
Energy regulatory: oil and gas - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Known for its strong FERC practice, Covington & Burling LLP frequently deals with regulatory approval work alongside enforcement and compliance matters. Senior counsel and energy practice head William Massey advised AZ Ocala Ranch - a large Marion County (Florida) landowner - on a FERC application brought by Sabal Trail Transmission Pipeline, which pertains to the construction of a natural gas pipeline through the landowner’s property. The team successfully filed an intervention objecting to the proposed route. Similarly, the practice represented Conrail in intervening and filing comments at FERC in response to two pipeline companies awaiting FERC approval for the construction of pipelines that would run under Conrail’s railroad tracks. James Dean is another key contact.

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Energy: renewable/alternative
Energy: renewable/alternative - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

Active in wind, solar and biofuels, and regularly handling transactional, regulatory and dispute resolution work, Covington & Burling LLP’s practice is headed by Washington DC-based corporate and securities specialist Andrew Jack. Steven Rosenbaum represented Sequoia Pacific and Alta Wind I Owner-Lessor C as plaintiffs in the Court of Federal Claims regarding cash grants owed to them by the US Treasury Department.

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Environment: litigation
Environment: litigation - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Key individuals at Covington & Burling LLP include former EPA general counsels Donald Elliott and Gary Guzy, both based in Washington DC, and practice co-chair Lawrence Hobel, who is based in San Francisco. The firm represented Intalco Aluminum in natural resource damages proceedings before the EPA, the US Forest Service and the Washington Department of Ecology; acted for Mueller Industries in a $10m site cleanup-related matter; and represented Aerojet Rocketdyne in relation to its Superfund site in California, a dispute involving water purveyor claims and property owner damage litigation. Senior counsel Robert Matthews, in Washington DC, also handled a multi-district litigation for KBR regarding injury from exposure to emissions from open-air burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan.

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Healthcare: life sciences
Healthcare: life sciences - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

The ‘top-drawer’ life sciences practice at Covington & Burling LLP is singled out for its ‘fantastic technical ability’, its ‘deep industry knowledge’, and its capacity to ‘draw resources from across its organization and present it as a single team’. It has an exceptional regulatory and corporate practice, regularly acting for major global pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies on a range of commercial agreements supporting a product life cycle. The group’s regulatory capability was enhanced by the arrival of Los Angeles-based Wade Ackerman, who joined from the US Senate Health, Education, Labor & Pensions (HELP) Committee. The team represented a major pharmaceutical company in an investigation by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee regarding alleged off-label marketing of pharmaceutical products. On the transactional front, John Hurvitz advised AbbVie on its global collaboration with Boehringer Ingelheim for an anti-IL-23 monoclonal biological antibody and, in another deal, assisted AbbVie with its $5.8bn acquisition of Stemcentrx and its rovalpituzumab compound for small cell lung cancer. Silicon Valley-based Emily Leonard counts Astellas, Foundation Medicine and Gilead among her clients; she recently assisted Medarex in collaborating with a Japanese pharmaceutical company over the cross-licensing of platform technologies. Senior counsels Richard Kingham, Peter Safir, Peter Barton Hutt, and partners Denise Esposito and Ellen Flannery are the key names to note in the regulatory and compliance space. Patent litigator Jeffrey Lerner and Hatch-Waxman litigation specialist George Pappas are also highly recommended. Named individuals are based in Washington DC unless otherwise stated.

Leading lawyers

John Hurvitz - Covington & Burling LLP

Peter Safir - Covington & Burling LLP

Richard Kingham - Covington & Burling LLP

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Insurance: advice to policyholders
Insurance: advice to policyholders - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP is a market leader in the policyholders sphere, with key offices in New York, Washington DC and Los Angeles. The team handles a full remit of insurance matters, including environmental damage claims, catastrophe insurance matters, asbestos coverage disputes and marine cargo loss claims. Insurance litigation related to data breaches is another growing area of activity for the firm, which has deep experience in fintech and data privacy issues. The team also continues to be involved in the highly publicized NFL concussion litigation. Its clients are typically drawn from pharmaceuticals, private equity and construction industries, among others. Washington DC-based Mitchell Dolin and Benedict Lenhart head the global insurance recovery practice and are recognized for their work representing corporate policyholders in professional liability disputes, shareholder claims and mass tort matters. The recommended Los Angeles-based René Siemens is adept at handling product liability and consumer cases, and San Francisco-based Gretchen Hoff Varner is also well regarded. San Francisco’s Donald Brown, Washington DC-based Saul Goodman, William Skinner and William Greaney, and New York’s Benjamin Duke are other key names. Matthew Schlesinger joined the Washington DC office from Reed Smith LLP.

Leading lawyers

Benedict Lenhart - Covington & Burling LLP

Donald Brown - Covington & Burling LLP

Mitchell Dolin - Covington & Burling LLP

Saul Goodman - Covington & Burling LLP

William Greaney - Covington & Burling LLP

William Skinner - Covington & Burling LLP

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Sport
Sport - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP has a long track record in the sports area and a particularly well-known relationship with the National Football League (NFL). In 2016, Douglas Gibson headed a team that advised the client on its sale of Thursday Night Football rights to CBS and NBC, while in a disputes context Benjamin Razi secured a victory for the league in a disability discrimination claim brought by a 2013 Pro Bowl ticketholder. Outside of football, Derek Ludwin represented the US Olympic Committee in an antitrust claim regarding a prohibition on non-kit sponsorship logos appearing during US Olympic trials brought by a chewing gum manufacturer and an athlete it sponsors. Peter Zern advised Turner Sports on its purchase of National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) men’s basketball tournament broadcast rights.

Leading lawyers

Douglas Gibson - Covington & Burling LLP

Peter Zern - Covington & Burling LLP

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Transport: rail and road
Transport: rail and road - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s transportation group handles litigation and regulatory issues for railroad companies and trade associations. Practice chair Michael Rosenthal in Washington DC represents rail giant Union Pacific Railroad Company before the STB regarding issues such as maximum rate regulations, competitive access, antitrust matters, infrastructure investments and Union Pacific’s relationship with Amtrak and other passenger railroads. Senior counsel Carolyn Corwin (also in Washington DC) was part of a team that successfully prevented Sherwin Alumina from compelling Union Pacific to provide common carrier service to one of Sherwin’s plants during a labor strike at that plant. The team also advises AAR on various regulatory, legislative and rulemaking matters, especially those involving economic regulations.

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United States: Intellectual property

Copyright
Copyright - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s practice is very experienced in online piracy and DMCA liability issues and regularly assists clients with their anti-piracy programs and targeted copyright enforcement. For example, it continues to assist the NFL in combatting the unauthorized re-transmission of game telecasts over the internet. Other recent work includes representing Microsoft in a software copyright infringement suit against Weidmann Electrical Technology and acting for PBS and its member stations in matters before the CRB regarding the distribution of statutory copyright royalties. The practice is chaired by Simon Frankel in San Francisco and of counsel Ronald Dove in Washington DC. Clara Shin, also in San Francisco, focuses on technology-related disputes.

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Patent litigation: full coverage
Patent litigation: full coverage - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s ‘responsive’ team has ‘a deep bench of technical and non-technical IP attorneys’ and the firm is ‘very capable in the policy, trade and pharma spaces’. In Washington DC, George Pappas handles major bet-the-company litigation and Christopher Sipes specializes in all aspects of pharmaceutical litigation under the Hatch-Waxman act; and in San Francisco, Michael Plimack is recommended for technology-related cases and ITC investigations. The group has handled a number of IPR proceedings in the technology and life sciences areas; its cross-sector client list includes AstraZeneca, Huawei and Amarin Corporation.

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Patent litigation: international trade commission
Patent litigation: international trade commission - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s depth of ITC expertise is ‘second to none’; it also stands out for its ability to handle patent infringement investigations in conjunction with federal district court proceedings. The firm’s China presence makes it a popular choice for multinational clients with cross-border IP issues involving China. In a typically prolific year, the team obtained a finding of no violation for respondent Samsung in a ‘100-day’ 337 proceeding filed by Creative regarding a patent relating to displaying playlists, and is representing respondent Baosteel before the ITC in high-profile antitrust-related claims. Sturgis Sobin, Maureen Browne, Alexander Chinoy and Shara Aranoff are the key team members.

Leading lawyers

Sturgis Sobin - Covington & Burling LLP

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Patents: licensing
Patents: licensing - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP has an outstanding record in the life sciences space and advises numerous multinational pharmaceutical companies with their large global collaborations and cross-border licensing deals. The ‘knowledgeableJohn Hurvitz in Washington DC co-heads the life sciences industry team, which assisted AbbVie with its global collaboration with Boehringer Ingelheim to develop and commercialize BI 655066, an anti-IL-23 monoclonal biologic antibody for psoriasis in Phase 3 development, and acted for Allergan in a licensing and collaboration transaction with Heptares Therapeutics. Other names to note are Silicon Valley-based corporate and IP partner Emily Leonard, who focuses on advising pharmaceutical and biotech clients on licensing and technology transfer arrangements, and San Francisco-based Amy Toro, who specializes in technology transactions.

Leading lawyers

John Hurvitz - Covington & Burling LLP

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Trade secrets (litigation and non-contentious matters)
Trade secrets (litigation and non-contentious matters) - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Daniel Johnson chairs Covington & Burling LLP’s group, which also includes George Pappas, Kurt Calia in Silicon Valley and San Francisco-based Michael Plimack. Daniel Spiegel, Richard Hertling and Gina Vetere assisted the Protect Trade Secrets Coalition with its effort to obtain passage of federal civil trade secrets legislation, the Defend Trade Secrets Act. Anthony Herman and Ralph Voltmer secured a victory for Kancor in trade secret litigation against ATC Ingredients. Other highlights included acting for Baoshan Iron & Steel and Baosteel America against US Steel’s allegations of trade secret misappropriation and defending McKesson against a $190m claim of non-disclosure breach and trade secrets misappropriation filed by Devon Robotics and Devon Health Services. Jaxon Engineering & Maintenance is also a client. Attorneys are based in Washington DC unless otherwise stated.

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Trademarks: litigation
Trademarks: litigation - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s practice handles a broad range of contentious trademark proceedings before the federal courts and the TTAB. Highlights included the defense of Expedia against a putative class action by several hotels, which claim that Expedia included them in its search without permission and inaccurately listed them as having no vacancies, constituting trademark infringement and false advertising. On the plaintiff side, the team acts for John Deere in pursuing trademark infringement and dilution claims against a company that is using the widely recognized Deere colors on its towed agricultural equipment. Simon Frankel in San Francisco as well as Neil Roman and of counsel Ronald Dove in Washington DC are recommended.

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Trademarks: non-contentious (including prosecution, portfolio management and licensing)
Trademarks: non-contentious (including prosecution, portfolio management and licensing) - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s practice is particularly noted for its transactional trademark practice and also handles prosecution matters for a broad variety of clients. The National Geographic Society is a longstanding client of the prosecution practice and has recently been advised on negotiating an expanded joint venture and trademark licensing agreement with 21st Century Fox that combines television channels with other media and consumer-oriented assets. Other clients include the American Automobile Association and the Business Software Alliance. Of counsel Kathleen Gallagher-Duff and of counsel Marie Lavalleye in Washington DC are recommended.

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United States: Investment fund formation and management

Private equity funds
Private equity funds - ranked: tier 5

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s ‘excellent private funds team provides a strong combination of expertise, responsiveness and practicality’. Loretta Shaw-Lorello is ‘extremely knowledgeable, a great problem solver and an absolute pleasure to deal with’; she advised HUH Real Estate Partners on the creation of a real estate direct investment platform. In addition to handling sponsor-side work, the firm also handles a significant amount of mandates for investors, with William Sturman and special counsel Kelly Labritz singled out for their ‘thorough and knowledgeable’ advice to investors. The practice also handles a raft of venture capital work: Shaw-Lorello advised UCB on the formation of a €150m healthcare-focused fund-of-funds, as well as acquisitions of limited partner interests. All the named lawyers are based in New York.

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United States: Labor and employment

ERISA litigation
ERISA litigation - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s Washington DC-based team has a strong presence in the US appellate courts, including the Supreme Court, and handles high-profile class action suits at the forefront of ERISA regulation. Experienced litigator and ERISA expert Robert Long advises on issues related to ESOPs and stock-drop allegations. Senior counsel Jeffrey Huvelle specializes in employment discrimination law and counsels on fiduciary breach and prohibited transaction claims in the context of spin-offs and insolvency. Christian Pistilli has represented pension plans, their sponsors and fiduciaries in complex class actions in trial courts and on appeal.

Leading lawyers

Jeffrey Huvelle - Covington & Burling LLP

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Employee health and retirement plans
Employee health and retirement plans - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

The Washington DC-based ERISA team at Covington & Burling LLP regularly represents clients in Department of Labor (DOL) and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) audits and investigations, as well as advising on plan structures and management. Robert Newman led the advice on the termination of 21st Century Fox’s pension plan and also advised the NFL with regards to retirement plans and healthcare reform. Practice head Richard Shea served as lead domestic and global employee benefits counsel to Dow and Solenis. Other notable clients include ERIC, a leading trade association, which Michael Francese represented in connection with the DOL’s new fiduciary rule. Seth Safra moved to Proskauer Rose LLP.

Leading lawyers

Richard Shea - Covington & Burling LLP

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United States: M&A/corporate and commercial

Commercial deals and contracts
Commercial deals and contracts - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

The ‘excellent’ attorneys at Covington & Burling LLPdeliver candid and thoughtful advice and can draw on great strength in depth’. The firm advised AbbVie on its global collaboration with Boehringer Ingelheim for the development of a monoclonal biologic antibody for the treatment of psoriasis, and acted for Allergan in a licensing and collaboration agreement with Heptares Therapeutics, whereby the client acquired a portfolio of novel subtype-selective muscarinic receptor agonists for the treatment of major neurological disorders. Other clients include Blueprint Medicines, for which it acted in the renegotiation of its collaboration with Ventana for the development of companion diagnostic arrays for the client’s therapeutic products. It also acted for Sanofi in connection with the launch of a joint venture with Verily Life Sciences to develop a diabetes management platform. John Hurvitz, senior counsel Richard Kingham, Emily Leonard, Scott Danzis and Matthew O’Connor chair the life sciences industry group, in which key figures also include Catherine Dargan, Michael Riella, of counsel Sarah Hoagland and Van Ellis, who joined from Morrison & Foerster LLP in June 2016. All those named are based in Washington DC, except for Leonard, who works in Silicon Valley. The firm also has a presence in San Francisco.

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M&A: large deals ($1bn+)
M&A: large deals ($1bn+) - ranked: tier 6

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP is widely recognized for its strength in regulated industries and has demonstrated an especially impressive record in sectors such as life sciences and healthcare, financial institutions, energy, aerospace and defense, hospitality and leisure, telecoms and technology. The firm’s M&A standing was enhanced by the arrival of David Schwartzbaum from Greenberg Traurig LLP, who is known for his advice to financial advisers and corporates in M&A transactions. In addition, Tom DeFilipps joined the Silicon Valley office from Sidley Austin LLP to lead the firm’s West Coast corporate practice. Clients include Allergan, AstraZeneca, MidFirst, Illumina, Johnson & Johnson and UCB. In 2016, the firm advised AbbVie on its $5.8bn acquisition of Stemcentrx, and assisted UCB with the $1.23bn sale of its Kremers Urban Pharmaceuticals division to Lannett Company. New York’s Scott Smith and Washington DC partner Catherine Dargan head the M&A practice, which also includes JD Weinberg and Frank Conner in New York and Michael Reed in Washington DC.

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Venture capital and emerging companies
Venture capital and emerging companies - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s practice is led by Ellen Corenswet in New York and Paul Rogers in Washington DC. Corenswet focuses on life sciences, technology and media companies, while Rogers focuses on investments and public and private securities transactions. Tom DeFilipps joined the Silicon Valley office in September 2016 as chair of the firm’s West Coast corporate practice and its venture capital and emerging company practice. Scott Anthony and Ingrid Rechtin are prominent in the technology space, advising on cleantech, e-commerce, predictive analytics and fintech transactions. Recent highlights include advising Propel.vc as lead investor on Guideline Technologies’ $4.6m Series A round and handling numerous investments for Salesforce Ventures, including the Series B financing of BugCrowd, the Series A financing of Amplero, the Series E financing of Quid, the Series A financing of Simplus and the Series D financing of SessionM. IFM Therapeutics, Kit Check, Athyrium Capital Management and Tencent Holdings are all clients.

Leading lawyers

Ellen Corenswet - Covington & Burling LLP

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United States: Media, technology and telecoms

Advertising and marketing
Advertising and marketing - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s ‘amazing’ group provides ‘actionable advice that is always appropriate and delivered in a timely fashion’. John Graubert and Sarah Wilson jointly head the team from New York; Graubert represented Lumos Labs executives in FTC issues and consent negotiations relating to cognitive training claims surrounding the Lumosity online program; and Wilson is part of the team advising Procter & Gamble on an industry-wide CPSC investigation of single-load liquid laundry pods. Lindsey Tonsager in San Francisco is singled out for her ‘ability to quickly and astutely advise on any number of issues that arise domestically and internationally’; she has a focus on data privacy and is advising Facebook on privacy issues surrounding its digital advertising. Digital marketing is a key strength for the firm and the practice also regularly advises on FTC matters, TCPA litigation and consumer class actions; San Francisco-based of counsel David Jolley acts for various clients in a consumer class action regarding slack fill claims.

Next generation lawyers

Lindsey Tonsager - Covington & Burling LLP

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Cyber law (including data protection and privacy)
Cyber law (including data protection and privacy) - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Data protection and data breach response - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s practice is led from the Washington DC office by David Fagan, Kurt Wimmer and James Garland. Garland advises Starbucks on cyber incident preparedness, Fagan advises American Airlines and Eli Lilly on cybersecurity issues, and Wimmer is part of a team which advises a prominent aircraft manufacturer on the development of its information security policies. New York’s Nigel Howard has ‘an excellent understanding of data protection issues associated with technology transactions’ and San Francisco-based Lindsey Tonsager has ‘a firm understanding of data protection compliance issues and astutely advises on domestic and international issues’. Hires in 2016 included of counsel Jennifer Martin in Silicon Valley and special counsel Micaela McMurrough in New York. Margaret Richardson departed for an in-house position at Airbnb.

Leading lawyers

David Fagan - Covington & Burling LLP

James Garland - Covington & Burling LLP

Next generation lawyers

Lindsey Tonsager - Covington & Burling LLP

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Outsourcing
Outsourcing - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

Recent highlights for the team at Covington & Burling LLP include assisting a major sporting association with a software services arrangement with Microsoft 365, advising a cloud-based enterprise software services company on an outsourcing arrangement with TierPoint, and assisting an airline with negotiating its agreement with a provider of in-flight entertainment and other on-board services for the client’s entire fleet. Key contacts include head of the team Nigel Howard and of counsel Stuart Irvin, both of whom are based in Washington DC. Outsourcing arrangements within the pharmaceutical and healthcare space are other strengths of the firm.

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Technology: transactions
Technology: transactions - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP is highly rated for its experience in the air transportation, life sciences, broadcasting and technology sectors, as well as financial services, energy and sports-related deals. The practice is co-led by New York’s Nigel Howard and Washington DC-based John Hurvitz; Howard advised Teva on its strategic partnership with IBM, which enabled Teva to become the first multinational pharmaceutical company to deploy IBM’s Watson Health Cloud as its global technology platform. The team also acted for Malaysia Airlines in its agreement with Amadeus, known for global travel technology, for a new passenger service system; and advised Ascension Health, the largest non profit health system in the US, on its long-term revenues cycle outsourcing agreement. Other recommended advisers include Washington DC-based Lee Tiedrich; Silicon Valley’s Scott Anthony, Emily Leonard and Robyn Polashuk; and San Francisco-based Ingrid Rechtin, Amy Toro and James Snipes.

Leading lawyers

Nigel Howard - Covington & Burling LLP

Next generation lawyers

Adrian Perry - Covington & Burling LLP

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Telecoms and broadcast: regulatory
Telecoms and broadcast: regulatory - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP, which ‘provides excellent service across the regulatory arena’, fields a team of highly regarded practitioners, including Yaron Dori, Mace Rosenstein and Jennifer Johnson. Recent highlights for Dori include advising on the regulatory issues relating to CenturyLink’s acquisition of Level 3 Communications, Berkshire Partners’ acquisition of Masergy Communications and Madison Dearborn Partners’ acquisition of Intermedia.net; Dori has also advised various communications clients on the implementation of the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) net neutrality rules. Johnson, who is co-chair of the firm’s communications and media practice, has notable expertise advising television industry clients, and recently advised several television industry associations on legislation issues such as spectrum allocations, media ownership and broadcast matters. Rosenstein, who is a prominent figure in the industry, successfully represented CBS, Scripps Networks Interactive, The Walt Disney Company, 21st Century Fox and Time Warner, among others, at the DC Circuit in a challenge to the FCC’s policies relating to public disclosure of business information.

Leading lawyers

Mace Rosenstein - Covington & Burling LLP

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Telecoms and broadcast: transactional
Telecoms and broadcast: transactional - ranked: tier 1

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP stands out for its high-profile transactional expertise and counts Univision, CBS and The Walt Disney Company as some of its key clients. Mace Rosenstein, who is co-chair of the firm’s media, internet and technology group, recently advised Altice on its $18bn acquisition of Cablevision Systems and its $9.1bn acquisition of Suddenlink. Other noteworthy names in the department include Yaron Dori, who advises across telecoms, privacy and consumer protection law; Robyn Polashuk in Los Angeles, who specializes in the licensing of television networks and programming across several platform types; and Jennifer Johnson, who is co-chair of the communications and media group and focuses on television-related matters, regularly acting for content distributors, broadcast companies and trade associations. Attorneys are based in Washington DC unless stated otherwise.

Leading lawyers

Mace Rosenstein - Covington & Burling LLP

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United States: Tax

Financial products
Financial products - ranked: tier 2

Covington & Burling LLP

Robert Culbertson and of counsel Kurt Baca in Washington DC are the key lawyers in Covington & Burling LLP’s financial products practice. Baca regularly advises major sports leagues and clubs on the structuring of financing arrangements as well as on tax accounting on debt and financial instruments. Other regular work includes bond structuring, restructuring of hedging programs and representing clients before the IRS. BNP Paribas, ING and Commerzbank are among the firm’s client base.

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International tax
International tax - ranked: tier 3

Covington & Burling LLP

At Covington & Burling LLP, clients recommend head of tax Daniel Luchsinger in Washington DC and capital markets lawyer Bruce Bennett in New York for delivering ‘excellent service in all areas’. The practice focuses on cross-border tax planning and restructuring, compliance and risk management, as well as controversy matters. The key lawyers-Luchsinger, Robert Culbertson, Samuel Maruca, Michael Caballero, William Chip and Dirk Suringa (all based in Washington DC)-advise clients such as Barclays, Commerzbank, General Electric and United Technologies Corporation.

Leading lawyers

Robert Culbertson - Covington & Burling LLP

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US taxes: contentious
US taxes: contentious - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

The timing and quality is outstanding’ at Covington + Burling LLP, where the tax controversy practice is led by Washington DC-based Daniel Luchsinger. The team is advising Boston Bruins on a matter before the US Tax Court involving the deductibility of meal expenses and acted for Shea Homes before the Ninth Circuit regarding the government’s appeal of Shea Homes’ victory before the Tax Court. Bacardi, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Coty and IBM are also clients. In Washington DC, Lee Kelley, Emin Toro, Jeremy Spector, and Sean Akins, who was recently promoted to partner, are recommended. Starling Marshall, a former trial attorney in the US DOJ’s Tax Division, joined the New York office as special counsel.

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US taxes: non-contentious
US taxes: non-contentious - ranked: tier 5

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP’s tax practice acts for multinational corporations and private equity funds in tax issues arising from M&A activity, joint ventures, capital markets transactions and internal restructurings. Dan Luchsinger led the US tax advice to Weyerhaeuser REIT on its merger with Plum Creek REIT, which involved the application of of rules concerning REITs and taxable REIT subsidiaries. It also acted for Allergan on the US income tax aspects of the $40bn sale of its generics business to TEVA Pharmaceutical Industries. Sam Maruca, Robert Culbertson, Michael Caballero and Susan Leahy are also recommended.

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Latin America: International firms

Corporate and M&A
Corporate and M&A - ranked: tier 4

Covington & Burling LLP

Covington & Burling LLP is ‘excellent’ and is widely recognised for its expertise in Mexico-related transactions, particularly in the financial services sector. Life sciences, healthcare and beverages are also key industries for the firm and the Latin America practice. The Latin America team is also frequently involved in corporate restructurings and issues related to compliance, regulation and anti-bribery. Mexican native Rubén Kraiem is hugely experienced, heads the Latin America corporate practice and devotes the majority of his time to the region. Up-and-coming partner Gabriel Mesa, who is Colombian-born, is ‘practical, completely bilingual and incredibly effective and intelligent’.

Next generation lawyers

Gabriel Mesa - Covington & Burling LLP

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