Leading trial lawyers in United States
David Boies - Boies Schiller Flexner LLP With over five decades of experience, David Boies is widely considered one of the leading trial lawyers in the US for plaintiffs and defendants engaged in high-stakes disputes across a diverse range of fields, including financial services and technology. Throughout the course of his career, he has won numerous landmark cases, including United States v. Microsoft (2001), and Hollingsworth v. Perry (2013), a case which invalidated California Proposition 8 banning same-sex marriage. More recently, Boies was defended Harvey Weinstein against a series of sexual harassment suits, although he terminated this relationship prior to Weinstein's recent high-profile conviction. Boies is the recipient of numerous Honorary Doctors of Laws from leading universities across the United States; he is also consistently highlighted by leading journals and media outlets.
Evan Chesler - Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP 'Very well respected' trial lawyer Evan Chesler acts for large corporations in a huge variety of trials and investigations, including major antitrust cases, securities cases and IP disputes. Recently he achieved success in the long-running patent dispute Apple Inc. v Qualcomm Incorporated (2019), in which he represented Qualcomm. Among his ongoing mandates, Chesler is retained by PG&E Corporation in over 145 lawsuits brought by various classes of claimants seeking damages as a result of the company's alleged negligence which plaintiffs assert caused the California North Bay Fires in 2017 and the 2018 campfire.
‘A real talent.’
Sabre Holdings Corporation
Tesla Board of Directors
Daniel Petrocelli - O'Melveny & Myers LLP Based in Los Angeles, Daniel Petrocelli is consistently involved in the most significant and impactful media and entertainment disputes in the market. In one such matter, he secured a victory for AT&T and Time Warner in an action against the DOJ's attempt to block their $85.4bn merger. In addition, Petrocelli is currently acting for plaintiff Twentieth-Century Fox in a claim seeking to prevent Netflix from recruiting Fox executives, the outcome of which is likely to affect the way in which fixed-term employment contracts are interpreted in all fields of employment. Petrocelli has an equally strong presence in the music industry, where he is retained by Kesha to defend against defamation claims brought by her producer, Lukasz Gottwald.
21st Century Fox
The Walt Disney Company
Global Music Rights
- Representing Ariana Grande in connection with her lawsuit against Forever 21 that claims at least $10m in damages after the fashion retailer allegedly stole her persona and intellectual property to promote its brand for free and created the false impression that Ms. Grande endorsed the company.
- Represented and subsequently secured a settlement on behalf of Disney in a case brought by Wind Dancer Production Group, which represents former writers and producers of a well-known television show, challenging Disney’s accounting of net profits from the show.
- Secured a highly publicized victory for client Twentieth-Century Fox in litigation with certain profit participants regarding the hit television drama Bones.
Dan Webb - Winston & Strawn LLP Dan Webb has enjoyed a career highlighted by headline-grabbing commercial, civil and criminal disputes. Among his historical wins, Webb acted as special counsel to the DOJ in United States of America v. John M. Poindexter (1992), successfully prosecuting the retired Admiral for his involvement in the Iran-Contra affair; and in a more recent case he successfully defended General Electric against a slew of price-fixing allegations. Last year, Webb defended Adam Shacknai against a wrongful death claim in San Diego, which was dismissed with prejudice in February 2019, despite the jury finding the defendant guilty in 2018.
Theodore Wells - Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP Based in New York, Theodore Wells ('smart, creative and hardworking') is widely considered one of the finest white-collar criminal defense lawyers in America. His historical work includes United States of America v. Libby, in which he acted for the defendant, Lewis 'Scooter' Libby. Of recent note, Wells is involved in a number of ongoing cases for ExonnMobile, and has already achieved a string of notable victories for the client: for instance, in the District of Columbia in June 2019 he obtained dismissal of all claims that the company was complicit in human rights violations committed by Indonesian soldiers against Acehnese citizens. In the financial services sector, Wells acted in Citigroup's claim for damages arising from the collapse of Italian company Parmalat, where he secured the enforcement of a trial court judgment for over $1bn in damages.
21st Century Fox
Bank of America
Wilkinson, Walsh & Eskovitz
Beth Wilkinson - Wilkinson, Walsh & Eskovitz Washington DC-based 'superstar' Beth Wilkinson is one of the great generalists, with a docket of past and present cases that includes consumer class actions, major antitrust cases, product liability claims, trade secrets, and fraud and securities disputes. Demonstrating her grit, Beth played a major role in the prosecution of the Oklahoma City Bombers following the infamous 1995 attack. In the pharmaceutical sector, Wilkinson obtained a complete defense verdict for Bayer in multi-district litigation arising from alleged side-effects caused by Xarelto, a blood-thinning drug. Crossing over to IP law, she obtained a complete defense verdict for Facebook and a partial defense verdict for several other defendants in a trade secrets case brought by ZeniMax claiming that the defendants wrongfully used their confidential information and intellectual property during the manufacturing process of the Oculus Rift VR headset.
‘An exceptional individual.’
Elkan Abramowitz - Morvillo Abramowitz Grand Iason & Anello P.C. Trial lawyer Elkan Abramowitz cut his teeth as assistant US attorney in the Southern District of New York, where he tried 30 cases before he was 30 years old. Since then, Abramowitz has established himself as a force in white-collar crime and civil trials, where he is often defending CEOs and prominent public figures against allegations that have the potential to be both financially and reputationally damaging. In one of his major historical headline cases, Abramowitz was called on to represent Woody Allen in his courtroom battle with Mia Farrow, starting in 1992. More recently, Abramowitz represented the former Petrobas CEO in a securities class action, managing to reach a settlement with the plaintiffs that is pending the court's final approval.
David Beck - Beck Redden Co-founder of a Houston-based litigation boutique bearing his name and overall 'consummate professional', David Beck is frequently engaged in the defense of large corporates in high-value disputes in the energy sector. In addition to that core area of focus, Beck also has experience in cases spanning patent infringement, antitrust and white-collar crime disputes, to name just a few. In one widely reported case, Beck served as Cameron International Corporation's defense counsel in multi-district litigation filed by claimants alleging that the company was liable for the catastrophic oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010; following the trial, his client was acquitted of all charges. Recent cases include acting for ExonnMobil in claims against Trade Exploration, in relation to two major environmental lawsuits costing the client $39bn.
Karen Dunn - Boies Schiller Flexner LLP Described by peers as 'just terrific', Washington-based Karen Dunn has a thriving trial practice, acting for leading tech companies in significant antitrust and trade secrets cases. Dunn's recent work for Uber is particularly impressive: she recently guided the client to a settlement in the case of Waymo v. Uber (2018), and, even more recently, secured a complete dismissal of an action in Massachusetts by plaintiffs seeking more than $250m in damages based on assertions that Uber illegally entered the market and relied on unfair trade practices in violation of taxi licensing rules in order to gain a competitive advantage. As a testament to her broader expertise, Dunn was instructed as co-lead counsel in an ongoing civil case against the leaders of the white supremacist group believed to be responsible for inciting violent protests in Charlottesville, Virginia; that matter is scheduled to go to trial in October 2020.
Oracle International Corporation and Oracle America
Marc Kasowitz - Kasowitz Benson Torres LLP New York-based founding partner Marc Kasowitz, described as 'one of the most effective litigators in town', routinely represents financial services companies and corporations in high-value white-collar trials. In an ongoing mandate, Kasowitz is representing MBIA Insurance Corporation in its claim against Credit Suisse seeking over $740m as a result of the defendant's alleged breach of contractual warranties in connection with the securitization of mortgage-backed securities. On the defense side, he recently won the dismissal of a $130m RICO claim brought by Bradford Billet against 25 defendants, including the chairman and CEO of MusclePharm, in relation to an alleged long-running conspiracy. Kasowitz is also known for advising high-profile individuals facing allegations of sexual harassment, including Bill O'Reilly.
ACA Financial Guaranty Corp
Harbinger Capital Partners
Douglas Elliman Realty
Keker, Van Nest & Peters LLP
John Keker - Keker, Van Nest & Peters LLP 'Terrific' California-based attorney John Keker has acted as lead counsel in numerous high-profile cases over the last four decades, spanning white-collar crime, antitrust, securities and IP trials. On the plaintiff side, in 2015 Keker secured a substantial $188m award for San Diego County Water Authority in a claim against Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, successfully asserting that the defendant charged the client excessive amounts for water transportation and violated a contract between both parties. On defense, where he has been most active, Keker successfully defended Major League Baseball against a claim by the city of San Jose alleging that the client violated antitrust and state laws; he convinced the US Supreme Court to decline a petition to review the case after obtaining dismissal in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Abbe Lowell - Winston & Strawn LLP Boasting an enviable track record of 27 trial wins and only one loss, Abbe Lowell is a go-to advocate for large corporations, high-profile individuals and government bodies involved in white-collar cases and complex investigations. In one of his most prescient past mandates, he acted as Chief Minority Counsel to the House of Representatives during the attempted impeachment of President Bill Clinton. Continuing to wade into trials involving the indictment of high ranking government officials, in 2018 Abbe led the successful defense of Senator Robert Menendez in New Jersey against allegations that he committed federal bribery offences. Last year, Abbe prevailed in his defense of Senator Hector Martinez Maldonado against bribery charges at first instance and during appeal proceedings, consolidating his strong position in this complex area of law. Although Lowell has a particularly strong track record in representing political figures, he has also developed expertise in acting for companies and CEOs.
Randy Mastro - Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP Leveraging his experience working in the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York where he specialized in organized crime, Randy Mastro is well known for representing major companies involved in white-collar criminal matters. Mastro acted as Chevron's lead counsel in its RICO case against lawyer Steven Donziger for committing fraud in order to obtain an $18bn judgment against his client. In another memorable victory, Mastro successfully defended Patriarch Partners and Lynn Tilton against SEC fraud charges relating to her management of a distressed debt CLO, saving the client over $200m and preventing Lynn Tilton, personally, from being debarred for life as an investment adviser.
Kathy Patrick - Gibbs & Bruns LLP Based in the firm's Houston office, Kathy Patrick is known across the country as a leading plaintiff lawyer for investors in RMBS cases against financial institutions, some of which relate to alleged securities fraud in jurisdictions such as Brazil, Thailand and Indonesia. Since 2008 she has represented 14 institutional investors seeking to recover funds lost as a result of Lehman Brother's bankruptcy; she recently secured a $2.42bn settlement on behalf of these investors, and at present is handling follow-on disputes concerning particular aspects of the payments to creditors. Illustrating her wider expertise, Patrick is acting for Occidental Chemical Corporation in its attempt to gain contributions from over 100 defendants towards the cost of building a dredge-and-cap remedy designed to tackle pollution in the Passaic River. In addition, Patrick is also sought out by large corporates, such as Reynolds and Reynolds, in major antitrust disputes.
Reynolds and Reynolds
Occidental Chemical Corporation
Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP
John Quinn - Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP- Based in California, founding partner John Quinn is one of the leading lawyers in the US for plaintiffs and defendants in corporate disputes. A show of his expertise in IP law and his strong position in the tech sector, Quinn recently served as lead counsel for Samsung Electronics Company in its dispute with Apple regarding alleged patent infringement by Samsung; he managed to reduce damages to 5.5% of the original claim value, and convince the jury that Apple itself was guilty of one count of patent infringement. Quinn is also recognized for his experience in white-collar criminal defense.
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
University of Southern California
Levine Leichtman Capital Partners
Diane Sullivan - Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP Over the course of more than three decades as a trial lawyer, Diane Sullivan has represented numerous large corporates in product liability, mass tort, antitrust, patent and environmental disputes. Her track record of representing large pharmaceutical companies in bet-the-company disputes is particularly impressive. Currently she acting for Johnson & Johnson in a series of nationwide class actions alleging that the company's talcum powder is responsible for causing certain types of cancer; at the time of writing she has secured three consecutive, unanimous jury verdicts. Sullivan acts for companies in large-scale environmental tort cases, a recent example of which saw her acting as lead defense counsel to ExonnMobil in state and federal court cases arising from water contamination allegedly caused by the company's use of MTBE as an additive to gasoline. Sullivan also has a strong reputation in commercial arbitration proceedings.
Johnson & Johnson
Procter & Gamble
- Representing Repsol in litigation involving allegedly more than $1bn in liabilities in connection with the pollution of the Passaic River in New Jersey.
- Representing Sanofi as plaintiff in a high-profile antitrust multi-district litigation centralized in Kansas federal court against Mylan for anti competitive business practices to unlawfully maintain its $1bn EpiPen monopoly.
- Defending Procter & Gamble in an environmental action in New York federal court alleging that the client’s products leached a possible carcinogen into public drinking wells.
Barry Berke - Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP'Phenomenal' New York-based attorney Barry Berke is a distinguished white-collar criminal defense lawyer, with demonstrable expertise in trials involving allegations of securities fraud, RICO and FCPA violations, bribery, bid rigging, embezzlement and various other matters. At the time of writing, Berke is serving as a temporary consultant to the Judiciary Committee of the House of Representatives in relation to Donald Trump's impeachment inquiry. Prior to this high profile appointment, he was active in several of the firm's ongoing trials, including its defense of Michael Cohen in criminal fraud and corruption allegations involving the client's investment activity in Africa.
Richard Clary - Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP Richard Clary has experience in a wide range of areas, including securities, antitrust, bankruptcy and intellectual property. Over the last 17 years, he has acted as lead counsel to Credit Suisse in a number of high-stakes cases arising from Enron's collapse; this has included an appellate victory in the $40bn Enron class action. Acting for Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse, Clary recently won dismissals of claims seeking hundreds of millions in compensation for alleged misrepresentations and common law fraud relating to the failed 2008 Hexion and Huntsman merger.
Robin Gibbs - Gibbs & Bruns LLP From the firm's base in Houston, founding partner Robin Gibbs has core expertise representing oil and gas companies in high-value disputes. However, over the course of a career spanning almost five decades, Gibbs has also built up experience in a huge variety of antitrust claims, securities litigation, IP and trade secrets disputes, and construction disputes, acting both for plaintiffs and defendants. In an ongoing mandate, Gibbs is representing Trustmark National Bank in three lawsuits arising from the collapse of Stanford Financial Group with a total claim value of $5bn.
Sandra Goldstein - Kirkland & Ellis LLP Sandra Goldstein is renowned for her expertise in securities and M&A litigation; a skill set cultivated over the course of more than three decades as a trial lawyer, which included a stint as department head at one of the most highly respected corporate and litigation firms in the market. In the securities space, Sandra recently acted for Pitney Bowes in state court litigation brought under federal securities law, resulting in a precedent-setting judgment determining that The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act's (PSLRA) stay provision does in fact apply in state court as well as federal court.
Barnes & Noble
ArcLight Capital Partners
Arturo González - Morrison & Foerster LLP Arturo González has a very diverse trial practice, spanning copyright infringement, trade secrets and civil rights cases, the last of which he often handles on a pro-bono basis. Looking at his historical highlights, González achieved a landmark judgment on behalf of the plaintiff in the case of Butt v. State of California (1992), reinstating the constitutional doctrine in California that the State must provide financial aid to keep schools open even when a school district runs out of its allocated funds. More recently, González caught the media's attention as lead trial counsel to Uber in the case of Waymo v. Uber (2018). In terms of his pro-bono work, González achieved a significant plaintiff-side verdict in the case of Barajas v. City of Rohnert Park (2018), in which the federal jury ruled that the police unlawfully entered the plaintiff's home, subsequent to which damages were awarded and an injunction was obtained preventing further illegal searches.
Brad Karp - Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP Brad Karp maintains an impressive litigation and advisory practice, routinely representing major banks, financial services companies and large corporates in high-stakes white-collar litigation. In 2019, he secured the dismissal of a $50bn breach-of-fiduciary duty claim against Blackstone Alternative Asset Management. Other standout highlights include representing Morgan Stanley in a nationwide class action; representing Citigroup in several high-value disputes, including commercial and anti-money laundering matters; and acting for Citigroup in the successful resolution of a multi-year global anti-money laundering investigation into the bank's activities in 2017.
Blackstone Alternative Asset Management
Carlos Ghosn, Nissan CEO and Chair
David Lender - Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP In over twenty five years of experience as a trial lawyer, David Lender has represented large corporates in a range of disputes, including fraud, antitrust and IP claims, among other areas. In a recent win, Lender acted for Sears Holdings in a bench trial in New York bankruptcy court, resulting in a $52.bn sale order, ensuring the company avoided liquidation. Lender also continues to represent ExonnMobil in several cases relating to its use of MTBE as an additive to gasoline, and in one recent dispute in Vermont state court, he significantly reduced Exonn's potential damages through a settlement agreement.
Sears Holdings Corporation
C&S Wholesale Grocers
Procter & Gamble
MedImpact Healthcare Systems
Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP
William Price - Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP Based in Los Angeles, William Price is well known for defending large companies in various areas of law, including antitrust, IP and employment, where he is particularly active in sexual harassment or unfair dismissal claims. In 2018 Price secured for Micron Technology the dismissal of a $12bn antitrust claim brought by Rambus, alleging violation of the Cartwright Act. Just last year, Price acted for ResCap Liquidating Trust in RMBS-related litigation, resulting in an award of $68m in favor of his client.
Bartlit Beck LLP
Based in Chicago, Philip Beck specializes in product liability, IP and commercial litigation. His historical cases include Bush v. Gore (2000), in which he served as lead counsel to George Bush's trial team in litigation that established the outcome of the 2000 presidential election; and Newsome v. McCabe (2001), a wrongful imprisonment case in which Beck secured record-setting damages for the plaintiff. On the defense side, Beck's notable work includes serving as Merck's lead trial counsel in five federal cases alleging that the client's drug Vioxx caused heart attacks and strokes; he achieved dismissal with prejudice in four of the trials.
Peter Bricks - Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP Based in New York, Peter Bicks has core strength in product liability cases. In a particularly standout highlight, he is handling the nationwide defense of Johnson & Johnson in a slew of class actions asserting that the company's talcum powder contained asbestos, leading to numerous cases of mesothelioma. Steering away from product liability, he is also representing Oracle in a high-stakes Supreme Court appeal by Google of a judgment issued in favor of Oracle, declaring that Google committed copyright infringement by using the plaintiff's Java technology.
Johnson & Johnson
Keker, Van Nest & Peters LLP
Susan Harriman - Keker, Van Nest & Peters LLP Susan Harriman in San Francisco handles commercial litigation in state and federal courts, covering a variety of industry sectors, including real estate, media and entertainment and pharmaceuticals. Historical highlights include representing Univision Communication in a claim by Televisa, which sought to terminate a long-term licensing agreement. Harriman is also well-versed in commercial arbitration proceedings.
William Isaacson - Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP Commercial litigator William Isaacson acts for plaintiffs and defendants in high-stakes cases, having developed a particularly strong reputation in IP and antitrust disputes. Since 2015, Isaacson has represented Oracle in a string of disputes with Rimini Street relating to copyright infringement. Also of note, he represented Source One in its claim against Benco Dental Supply, alleging that the company was guilty of conspiring with two other dental supply chains to stifle competition; Isaacson achieved a settlement two weeks into the trial.
George Lombardi - Winston & Strawn LLP George Lombardi is among the market's leading patents and product liability specialists. In 2019 he secured a unanimous landmark judgment on behalf of Teva Pharmaceuticals in the US Supreme Court, establishing that the America Invents Act does not narrow the scope of the Patent Act's on-sale bar; this enabled the client to launch its generic version of the drug Aloxi in the US. In the product liability space, Lombardi is defending Monsanto in three separate cases brought by plaintiffs who allege that the company's Round-Up products are responsible for causing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
Gary Naftalis - Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP Over the course of more than 40 years as a trial lawyer, Gary Naftalis has represented clients such as corporations, D&Os and high-profile individuals in a huge variety of civil, criminal and regulatory cases, including major appeals. In one significant historical win, Naftalis secured the dismissal of all claims brought against Kenneth Langone, former chair of the NYSE compensation committee, relating to the compensation package granted to NYSE chairman Richard Grasso.
Berg & Androphy
James Quinn - Berg & Androphy New York trial lawyer James Quinn has a dynamic commercial and white-collar crime practice, with a particular focus on antitrust and securities law, IP and sports disputes. Historical highlights have included acting as ExonnMobil's lead trial counsel in a claim brought by the State of New Hampshire, asserting that the company's use of MTBE as a gasoline additive caused serious environmental harm by polluting natural water sources; and also successfully defended CBS against a putative class action brought by current and former NCAA Division I football and basketball players seeking damages as a result of the defendant's allegedly unauthorized use of their personal information for financial gain.
Keker, Van Nest & Peters LLP
Robert Van Nest - Keker, Van Nest & Peters LLP Based in California, Robert Van Nest specializes in large-scale IP cases, and has additional experience in trials involving securities fraud, commercial contracts and antitrust. Among his past cases, Van Nest represented Google in an action by Oracle alleging breach of copyright law in the integration of its Java code into Android's programming. After a two week trial, the federal jury unanimously found in Google's favor, though the case was recently overturned and is now the subject of an ongoing Supreme Court appeal. Other highlights have included defending SanDisk in patent litigation brought by Round Rock Research in Delaware and California.
Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP
Charles Verhoeven - Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, LLP Patent and IP specialist Charles Verhoeven acts for plaintiffs and defendants in high-profile disputes in federal and state courts, as well as at the ITC. On the plaintiff side, Verhoeven recently acted as Waymo's lead trial counsel in its trade secrets case against Uber, which resulted in a $250m settlement. In the long-running dispute widely referred to as the smartphone wars, Verhoeven acted for Samsung in multiple claims and counter-claims, ultimately managing to prevent Huawei from enforcing two injunction orders issued by a Chinese court on grounds of patent infringement.