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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United States, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for six consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.

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United States > Government > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Overview

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Overview clients in United States using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

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Following the inauguration of President Trump, government contracting is a thriving area of activity, particularly within the healthcare, defense, energy and technology areas. Defense and technology spending has seen a sizeable increase, with a notable focus on tackling cybersecurity matters in the case of the latter. Bid protests remain a key area of work for several firms due to the fiercely competitive nature of the contracting environment, and the number of disputes pertaining to False Claims Act matters, including qui tam actions, continues to increase. Corporate transactional work was another thriving area.

In the government relations arena, the change of administration has meant that more practices are keen to develop their bipartisan aspects, since former senior government officials can make up key components of firms’ practices and provide smooth access to policymakers. Areas facing new regulations, such as the internet, and issues under review, such as tax reform, healthcare and energy, are subject to intense lobbying. Advocacy work remains prominent as firms seek to maintain a continual dialogue with decision makers to increase awareness and raise the concerns of particular industries and/or interests, particularly in sectors where there is growing uncertainty around whether legislative changes will be implemented.

The rankings are more focused on the national and international - rather than state and local - level, so lawyers mentioned are based in Washington DC unless otherwise noted.


Government contracts

Index of tables

  1. Government contracts
  2. Leading lawyers
  3. Next generation lawyers

Leading lawyers

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Next generation lawyers

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Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Government contracts clients in United States using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

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Housing around 30 partners in its government contracts group, Arnold & Porter has the depth to represent clients from across all relevant industry sectors. The team successfully defended Raytheon Intelligence, Information and Services against three bid protests brought by Northrop Grumman pertaining to the award of a $1bn contract by the Department of Homeland Security to provide cybersecurity defense services for all civilian Federal government networks; the challenge pertained to alleged organizational conflicts. In another matter, the team defended L3 Technologies against challenges brought by Boeing and Bombardier concerning the award of an Air Force sole source contract in connection with the Compass Call program. Other key clients include Ernst & Young and Dell. The firm is also noted for its strength in False Claims Act (FCA) matters as well as classified projects and investigations, such as acting for former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in a State Department Inspector General investigation. Government contract transactions feature prominently in the group’s workload, where it draws upon the wider government contract-specific expertise of members of the firm’s intellectual property, employment and corporate teams to handle such matters. Craig Holman chairs the practice, which includes Charles Blanchard and Ronald Lee, both experts in advising IT service providers on protection requirements and regulatory constraints. Paul Pompeo has expertise in cost and pricing matters. Mark Colley is noted for his experience in FCA claims and bid protests. Kara Daniels, Steven Diamond and Dominique Casimir are also recommended.

Noted for its traditional strength in assisting aerospace and defense industry clients, Crowell & Moring LLP’s practice continues to expand into other sectors, particularly technology and healthcare. The group defended Health Net Federal Services in litigation concerning two healthcare contracts worth $58bn for managed care services for the western region of the US. In another example, the team successfully assisted AT&T with the acquisition of a $46.5bn contract to build a nationwide public safety broadband network for first responders. In another matter, the group advised Accenture Federal Services on government contract matters pertaining to its acquisition of three cybersecurity companies. Daniel Forman and Peter Eyre co-chair the practice, which includes David Robbins, who specializes in investigations, suspension and debarment, and Robert Burton, who combines public procurement and public policy expertise. David Bodenheimer and senior counsel Thomas Humphrey are noted for bid protest matters. Senior counsel Terry Albertson stands out for his cost and pricing expertise. Adelicia Cliffe and Lorraine Campos are also recommended. Recent additions to the group include former Department of Homeland Security Chief of Staff Paul Rosen, who has expertise in cybersecurity and procurement fraud matters and joined in May 2017, and Nicole Owren-Wiest, who was a new arrival from Wiley Rein LLP in November 2017.

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Wiley Rein LLP’s client roster includes some of the largest government contractors and it regularly acts for aerospace and defense sector clients, including Orbital ATK, Boeing and DynCorp. The group is representing BAE Systems in a dispute against South Korea concerning a canceled $1.7bn contract to upgrade South Korea’s F-16 fleet; the contract was terminated following an increase in the initial price of the contract. In another matter, the team successfully defended AECOM against a claim for alleged breach of contract and fraud related to a tender for a classified contract with the intelligence community; the US Department of Justice intervened in the matter to assert state secrets privilege and to dismiss the case. Practice co-heads Scott McCaleb and Paul Khoury, along with Jon Burd, who is ‘focused on achieving the best results for the client’, acted on the aforementioned matter. The practice also houses Rand Allen, Philip Davis, John Prairie and Brian Walsh. Nicole Owren-Wiest moved to Crowell & Moring LLP in November 2017.

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP’s government contracts group handles the whole spectrum of matters, with a strong profile for contentious work. Practice head Karen Manos is highly regarded for her expertise in cost, pricing and accounting matters, and is well known for defending contractors against government claims in cases concerning alleged non-compliance with different cost accounting standards. A recent example was successfully defending KBR against a $14.7m government cost disallowance concerning the Emergency Construction Capabilities Contract Worldwide contract awarded by the US Navy for hurricane response work. John Chesley specializes in white-collar criminal enforcement and investigation work, and frequently represents clients before the US Court of Federal Claims and the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals. Joseph West and Los Angeles-based duo Timothy Hatch, who is noted for his experience in FCA and qui tam matters, and litigator James Zelenay are other names to note.

Housing ‘a deep bench of attorneys’, Hogan Lovells US LLP’s ‘excellent’ government contracts practice assists clients across a wide range of industries, with notable expertise in the healthcare, aerospace, defense, technology and education sectors. In the healthcare area, the group defended Optum Healthcare against a bid protest brought by Leidos concerning the award of a $200m Defense Health Agency contract to provide global nurse advice line services. On the aerospace and defense side, Michael Mason defended GE Inspection Technologies in a bid protest filed by Olympus America challenging the US Air Force’s award to the client of a five-year contract for the supply of borescopes. In another matter, the team represents VITA in litigation against Northrop Grumman over performance of a $2.4bn contract concerning the management of state-wide information technology resources. Michael Vernick, who is well known for advising leading universities on grant-related investigations and federal research matters, recently took over the practice lead from senior counsel Thomas McGovern, who remains active. Other key names include Michael McGill, Joy Sturm and Agnes Dover.

The nine-partner team at Morrison & Foerster LLP handles the full gamut of government contracts matters, particularly high-stakes bid protests. Alex Ward led a team representing K2 in a successful challenge to the Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s decision to award a multimillion-dollar contract to a competitor, which was reversed due to the competitor’s failure to comply with regulations. Kevin Mullen and Jay DeVecchio led the team defending ManTech International against a bid protest filed by a competitor challenging the award of a multimillion-dollar contract for technology security services to the client; the competitor had been the original recipient of the award but the decision was reversed due to proposal re-evaluations. Other areas of strength for the team include FCA issues, investigations, intellectual property matters and corporate transactions. David Churchill and McLean-based partners Daniel Chudd, Tina Reynolds, Bradley Wine, Richard Vacura and government contractor transaction specialist Damien Specht are other names to note.

Boutique firm Rogers Joseph O’Donnell is ‘excellent’ in the government contracts-related litigation space. Recent highlights include the ‘responsive’ team representing T.Y. Lin International in litigation regarding the Bay Area Rapid Transit Silicon Valley Extension project, concerning issues of alleged liability and damages during the design and build process. Bid protests remain prominent in the group’s caseload; representative clients include CGI, CBE, Siemens Government Technologies, McKesson and Northrop Grumman. FCA issues are another area of strength. Head of the Washington DC office Robert Metzger has ‘an uncanny ability to have his next several devastating arguments lined up in advance’; Brian Miller, also based in Washington DC, is ‘very knowledgeable’ and ‘knows the industry inside out’. Firm head Neil O’Donnell, Patricia Meagher, Lauren Kramer and Mark Linderman operate from the firm’s San Francisco office. Linderman co-chairs the practice group with Washington DC-based Jeffery Chiow.

Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP’s team is noted for its extensive experience in procurement matters; recent work includes handling bid protests, FCA matters and investigations. Los Angeles-based Bryan Daly leads the group of mostly Washington DC-based lawyers, such as John Chierichella, Anne Perry, Jonathan Aronie and the ‘diligentKeith Szeliga. A recent victory in a bid protest was achieved for SBD Alliant concerning a $47m Defense Health Agency contract to perform independent developmental test and evaluation services, which had been awarded to a competitor. In another matter, the group successfully represented Pacific Pulmonary Services in a FCA suit concerning an alleged bribery scheme.

Blank Rome LLP’s team has excellent experience in litigation and handles the gamut of advisory work, with a recent uptick in transactional matters; an example was successfully assisting Aquilent with its $250m acquisition by Booz Allen Hamilton. The group regularly assists clients from the defense, aerospace, technology, healthcare and maritime sectors. It recently scored a victory defending Columbia Helicopters in a bid protest brought by a competitor concerning the award of a $1bn contract by the Department of Defense to provide and operate rotary aircraft on behalf of US armed forces in Afghanistan. David Nadler leads the team, in which Richard Conway, Justin Chiarodo and Scott Arnold are key names.

Jessica Abrahams leads Dentons’ government contracts practice, which is particularly active in FCA matters; the group represented Shaw Environmental in two qui tam cases concerning alleged failure to comply with Louisiana liquefied petroleum gas laws and alleged wrongful billing in the provision of temporary housing in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. The practice has seen a significant uptick in bid protest work, including recently prevailing in a challenge on behalf of unsuccessful offerors Strategi and VariQ Conviso against awards worth $30m by the US Department of Health and Human Services under Strategic Partners Acquisition Readiness Contract (SPARC) procurement; the clients’ bid protest was successful, resulting in corrective action being taken. In Washington DC, Safety Act applications expert Dana Pashkoff and cybersecurity expert Erin Sheppard are names to note. In Denver, litigator Thomas Lemmer and Steven Masiello are recommended.

Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP provides ‘a superior service’ in the field of M&A transactions for government contractors, notably in the aerospace and defense sectors. The group has an established reputation for handling some of the most high-profile transactional deals; a recent example was advising Jacobs Engineering Group on its successful $3.3bn acquisition of CH2M. Bid protests and FCA cases are other cornerstone areas of expertise for the team; Douglas Baruch, who heads the firm’s False Claims Act practice, defended military container subtractor Advanced Containment Systems in an FCA investigation and qui tam suit concerning allegations of falsely certified quality assurance standards. In July 2017 Jerald Howe left to join Leidos and of counsel James McCullough, who is ‘very precise’, took over as head of the government contracts practice. Michael Anstett is another name to note.

Mayer Brown’s government contracts practice has a solid track record in assisting contractors from a wide spectrum of industries across the entire life cycle of the awarding process and throughout contract performance. The team advises clients on bid protests, litigation, FCA issues, regulatory matters and compliance. It represented QTC Medical Services as an intervenor in a bid protest concerning the award of a $6.8bn contract by the Department of Veterans Affairs for the provision of medical disability examination services. Washington DC-based Marcia Madsen, who heads the practice, Cameron Hamrick and David Dowd are key names. The group also attracts praise for its notable state and local government contracts practices in Chicago and Los Angeles.

From its offices in Los Angeles, Northern Virginia and Washington DC, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP’s government contracts practice provides coast-to-coast coverage of the full range of government contract matters. The group’s workload remains dominated by contentious work; it successfully represented Next Phase and two other offerors in a bid protest challenging the clients’ exclusion from a $25bn award to support the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services SPARC program. McLean-based John Jensen and Los Angeles-based Michael Rizzo lead the team. James Gallagher and Alex Tomaszczuk are names to note in the Los Angeles office, while counsel David Dixon is recommended in the Northern Virginia office.

Steptoe & Johnson LLP’s team provides ‘high-quality advice’ on, among other areas, bid protests, litigation, investigations and contract claims. A recent victory in the bid protest sphere was achieved for longstanding client Humana concerning a $40bn Defense Health Agency contract to perform the TRICARE East Region Managed Care Support services, which was being challenged by multiple competitors. The team also defends CACI against claims brought by Iraqi citizens held by the US at Abu Ghraib prison of alleged mistreatment under theories of co-conspirator liability. The ‘always available’ Paul Hurst, who attracts praise for his ‘deep knowledge’ and ‘keen analysis of the issues’, heads the practice.

Vinson & Elkins LLP’s government contracts practice provides ‘a top-notch service’, with deep expertise in high-value bid protests and claims litigation; FCA issues are another cornerstone area for the group. The team represents Boeing in a bid protest against the US Air Force’s decision to allow L3 Technologies to select the aircraft to replace the EC-130 Compass Call intelligence aircraft, citing alleged unfair conflicts of interest. In the FCA sphere, the team is acting for BAE Systems in a case brought by the government concerning the client’s alleged violation of the Truth in Negotiations Act; the government claims the client failed to provide accurate rates and quantities during negotiations on the price of a contract to manufacture armored tactical vehicles used by the US Army in Iraq. David Johnson and Daniel Graham, who provides ‘great contract advice’, co-lead the team, which includes the ‘experienced, knowledgeable and pragmatic’ duo, of counsel Michael Charness and counsel Jamie Tabb.

Robert Huffman leads the team at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP, which has established expertise in advising aerospace and defense sector clients on bid protests, FCA matters, transactions, contentious matters and intellectual property work. The group represented Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation in a bid protest regarding the US Department of Education’s $417m award to provide debt collection services relating to defaulted student loans.

Led by Brian Waagner, the team at Husch Blackwell LLP handled a workload dominated by bid protests and contentious cases for clients in the healthcare and defense sectors. The group has niche expertise in handling postal service contracting matters; David Hendel leads the advice to the National Star Route Mail Contractors Association on contracting matters relating to the US Postal Service. In another matter, the team is defending Jacobs Field Services North America, a subsidiary of engineering company Jacobs, against three bid protests regarding the award of a $350m contract by the US Army Corps of Engineers for the remediation of nuclear waste. Hal Perloff is also recommended.

K&L Gates has a solid reputation in the government contracts sphere for representing its clients in internal investigations, bid protests, FCA issues and contentious matters. Led by practice head Stuart Nibley, the group successfully defended Fluor against a bid protest filed by incumbent contractor PAE regarding the award of an IDIQ contract to the client to provide logistical support at sites in Germany. Seattle-based Paul Bowen is noted for his expertise in intellectual property matters for government contractors; he assists in-space manufacturing company Made in Space with protecting its technology and handling matters of first impression. Associate Amy Conant is also recommended in the Washington DC office.

Latham & Watkins LLP’s government contracts practice has seen a significant recent uptick in transactional work, while FCA work remains a key area of growth. The group acts for clients from the technology, telecoms and healthcare sectors, and has experience in handling corporate transactions in the defense and aerospace industry. Clients include Cerner Corporation, CA Technologies and American Airlines. David Hazelton leads the team. Anne Robinson, counsel Kyle Jefcoat and associate Dean Baxtresser are other names to note.

Pepper Hamilton LLP is well known for its niche expertise in advising pharmaceutical and medical device companies on biodefense and vaccine procurements. The group has experience in bid protest work, pre- and post-award audits, FCA cases and regulatory issues. Past clients for the team include Noble Supply & Logistics, National Instruments, Tyco International and General Dynamics Mission Systems. Hilary Cairnie heads the practice. Michael Hordell retired in December 2017.

The ‘responsive’ government contracts and grants team at Reed Smith LLP has particular strength in providing ‘practical advice’ to clients in the life sciences sector. In 2016 the group successfully defended a prominent government services provider against two bid protests filed by competitors of the client, concerning a $320m contract for the provision of high-level logistics support to the army. Other recent work included further bid protests, contract performance disputes and FCA cases. Lawrence Block (‘scrupulously detail-oriented and a seasoned negotiator’), Lawrence Sher and construction sector expert Holly Roth are key names.

Venable LLP’s group has notable strength in bid protests and contentious work, with intellectual property litigation for government contractors recognized as a cornerstone area of the practice. The team has an excellent reputation for assisting government contractors from the technology, aerospace and defense sectors; recent highlights include successfully defending ATAP against two bid protests from Raytheon and VSE Corporation challenging the award of United States Marine Corps contracts worth $28m to the client to repair and overhaul mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles. Washington DC houses the majority of the team, including group co-lead Paul Debolt and Dismas Locaria, with other key names located in Tysons Corner - including James Boland and Scott Hommer, who co-leads the team with Debolt - and Baltimore.


Government relations

Who Represents Who

Find out which law firms are representing which Government relations clients in United States using The Legal 500's new comprehensive database of law firm/client relationships. Instantly search over 925,000 relationships, including over 83,000 Fortune 500, 46,000 FTSE350 and 13,000 DAX 30 relationships globally. Access is free for in-house lawyers, and by subscription for law firms. For more information, contact david.burgess@legal500.com.

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Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP’s public law and policy group has an excellent reputation for its expertise in specialty areas such as emerging technology, complex or controversial projects and Cuba law and policy. Other core areas of strength include Native American matters, health, trade, and environment issues. Scott Parven leads the Cuba team, which is well known for assisting companies with entry into the Cuban business markets; past matters have included obtaining an Office of Foreign Assets Control license to authorize a US company’s import of a pharmaceutical product made in Cuba, and acting for a multinational telecoms equipment provider in an internal investigation into several transactions where equipment sold to Cuba was repaired in the company’s US service center without proper authorization. In another matter, Parven led the advice to non-profit organization Rettsyndrome.org on applying for Department of Defense medical research funds worth $300m. Ed Pagano led the team assisting the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers with blocking congressional passage of legislation to prevent its transition from the Department of Commerce. Jeffrey McMillen, Joel Jankowsky and John Jonas are also recommended. In April 2017 G Hunter Bates and Brian Pomper took over as co-chairs of the practice from Donald Pongrace, who remains active.

The ‘extremely responsive’ government relations team at Hogan Lovells US LLP handles a workload dominated by tax, healthcare and financial services matters; aviation policy and international trade cases are other areas of expertise. A substantial amount of the group’s recent work was focused on advocating policy positions in the ongoing tax reform debate, particularly for multinational companies, including American Gaming Association and Xcel Energy. Aviation law expert Lisa Ellman leads the advice to Commercial Drone Alliance pertaining to advocating the continuing development of the commercial drone industry. In another matter, the team is assisting several energy companies with obtaining federal approval to export liquefied natural gas from the US to countries such as China, Taiwan and the Philippines. Of counsel Norman Coleman leads the team, which includes sanctions law expert Robert Kyle and former senior advisor in the US House of Representatives Aaron Cutler. In 2017 Ivan Zapien, former member of the Democratic National Committee, joined the firm. Julie Brill left to join Microsoft.

With around 40 partners in its public policy and regulation practice, Holland & Knight LLP has the strength and depth to assist clients from a broad range of industries. It has notable expertise in lobbying for healthcare entities; clients include the Alliance for Regenerative Medicine and the American Chemistry Council. Recent work for the group includes assisting the PCI Security Standards Council with addressing congressional committees on payment card security matters following high-profile data breaches. On behalf of the National Fisheries Institute, it negotiated with Congress to repeal the US Department of Agriculture’s Catfish Inspection Rule via a Congressional Review Act. Rich Gold and Atlanta-based Robert Highsmith are highly recommended. Paul Bock, tax expert Nicole Elliott, Joel Roberson and Gerry Sikorski are other names to note.

Trusted Advisor - with Finnegan

IP specialist Finnegan detail how their collaborative approach makes for a unique culture which is designed to allow them to work with clients in a way which is cognizant of the challenges facing all companies today.

K&L Gates’ public policy and law group provides ongoing assistance to private mortgage insurance company Radian pertaining to advocacy for the protection and expansion of private mortgage insurance for low-down-payment loans. On behalf of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation, the team advocated for the commercial spaceflight industry in the NASA Transition Authorization Act, and is now assisting NASA with funding issues through the Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies’ appropriations process. The Airport Minority Advisory Council retains the firm for advocacy concerning major airport and aviation legislation. Other representative clients include Pitney Bowes, the Transportation Institute and the Greater Washington Board of Trade. Bruce Heiman leads the team. Paul Stimers, Daniel Ritter, Michael Scanlon, Emanuel Rouvelas, Stacy Ettinger and Karishma Shah Page are other key contacts.

The ‘excellent’ team at Mayer Brown is noted for assisting international, federal, state and local clients with government affairs matters; based in Chicago, where John Janicik and Mitchell Holzrichter are names to note, and Los Angeles, where Philip Recht and Edgar Khalatian are based and singled out for their expertise. Recht leads ongoing advice to the California High-Speed Rail Authority on the development of the high-speed rail network, currently the largest public works project in the US. Alongside Andrew Kugler, Recht advises the Lytton Rancheria tribe on state legislative and regulatory issues pertaining to internet gaming, alongside handling negotiations with Congress to enact legislation to place Sonoma County, the land selected for the tribe’s proposed housing development project, in trust for the tribe. In an example of its international capabilities, the group represented the government of Puerto Rico in advocacy for the development of a US-Puerto Rico tax policy relationship. Michael Kantor, Timothy Keeler and Duane Layton are recommended in the Washington DC office.

Squire Patton Boggs is noted for its experience in lobbying, regulatory advocacy, and public policy due diligence into proposed legislation and regulations with the potential to affect business deals. Past clients include SpaceX, Amazon, Mars, Wake Forest University, California Steel Industries and Gazprombank. Jeffrey Turner, who handles public policy matters relating to tax and trade policy issues, heads the public policy practice. Erin McGrain is a name to note.

Scott Segal and Dee Martin co-chair Bracewell LLP’s ‘forward-thinking and impactful’ government relations group, which attracts praise for its ‘very good understanding of the Washington ecosystem’. Energy policy is a core strength for the team; for example, it is assisting Valero Energy with advocating for reform of the Renewable Fuels Standard, which currently requires that a set amount of renewable fuels be blended into transportation fuels every year. The firm is acting for Air Liquide in advocating for consistent legislative and regulatory control of hydrogen and helium. The group also represents the Electric Reliability Coordinating Council in policy debates pertaining to electricity, energy and environmental regulation. The team regularly advocates on behalf of the FBI Agents Association (FBIAA) before Congress, the White House and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) itself; it successfully advocated on the FBIAA’s behalf for seven FBI agents, who died as a result of health conditions related to the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, to be officially recognised as losing their lives in the performance of their duties. In another matter, the group assists the FBIAA with lobbying Congress to craft statutory language to strengthen legislation on domestic terrorism. Joshua Zive is also recommended.

Following the opening of an office in Sacramento, Dentons’ public policy and advocacy network now reaches across 50 states and also operates at a federal level. The attorney general practice is a core strength of the firm, and provides ongoing assistance to DeVry Education Group pertaining to investigations and multiple claims regarding marketing materials and statements made to prospective students on the subject of graduation and job placement rates. Washington DC-based Gordon Giffin combines public policy and energy expertise to assist the Canadian Electricity Association with providing strategic advice to Congress on Canadian electricity imports into the US. Giffin also leads the advice to Brookfield Renewable on federal energy legislation, including the EPA’s efforts to revise and/or rescind the Clean Power Plan. Other clients include Charter Communications, Northside Hospital and Boy Scouts of America. Daniel Gibb and Michael Zolandz are other names to note in the Washington DC office. Jeffrey Bleich is a key name in San Francisco, while Edward Lindsey and Eric Tanenblatt are recommended in the Atlanta office.

King & Spalding LLP’s group has notable expertise in handling congressional investigations and political law matters, as well as assisting clients drawn from the healthcare, infrastructure, defense and automotive/transportation sectors. The team is also well known for handling regulatory work for foreign corporations with US subsidiaries. In the healthcare area, the firm assisted Adventist Healthcare with securing grant funding for early childhood behavior health projects, and with securing provisions in mental health legislation enacted by Congress. The group also represented MultiCare Health System in lobbying efforts to secure funding for the construction of an inpatient psychiatric facility; the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Treatment Accessibility Act of 2017, which assists hospitals with leveraging federal support, was issued as a result. In another matter, the team represents Equifax before the Senate and the House of Representatives in congressional inquiries pertaining to the company’s high-profile cybersecurity breach in September 2017. Practice head Thomas Spulak, automotive sector specialist Jacqueline Glassman, Ted Hester and healthcare expert C’Reda Weeden are noted. International trade specialist Steve Kupka and counsel Wintta Woldemariam joined the team in 2017.

With a strong reputation in the field of financial services advocacy, Steptoe & Johnson LLP’s government affairs and public policy practice has seen a significant uptick in work relating to tax reform. For example, the group was retained by seafood producer and distributor StarKist to advocate for the extension of a tax rule affecting companies operating in American Samoa. In another matter, the team acts for the Council of Insurance Agents & Brokers (CIAB) in ensuring that US states implement the regulations set by the Dodd-Frank Act, as well as promoting an employer-sponsored healthcare market for US businesses who are clients of CIAB members. Las Vegas Sands is another client. Scott Sinder and Micah Green jointly head the practice. Darryl Nirenberg, James Barnette and of counsel Jason Abel are also recommended.

At Van Ness Feldman LLP, the firm’s core specialisms in environmental, natural resources, energy, and transport matters filter through into its government relations and policy practice. The group’s recent workload includes assisting clients with reforms to regulations affecting clean energy standards, energy infrastructure projects and access to energy resources, particularly Alaska’s natural resources. Firm chair Richard Agnew advises the Alaska Federation of Natives on federal and state legislation designed to recognise and protect hunting, fishing and gathering rights to renewable subsistence resources for Alaska Natives. The team provides ongoing assistance to Clean Line Energy regarding lobbying efforts in support of the wind energy transmission line project Plains & Eastern Clean Line and the Department of Energy’s decision to participate by means of a public private partnership. It was also retained by the Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority to assist with lobbying for expedited federal permitting to allow a land building project, designed to protect and restore the Louisiana coast, to be built at the earliest date possible. Other clients include the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Foundation, Noble Energy, Shell, Los Angeles Department of Water & Power and the city of Houston, Texas. Robert Szabo, Tom Roberts, Alan Mintz and Andrew VanderJack are all recommended.

WilmerHale’s public policy and legislative affairs group has solid expertise in developing advocacy strategies that span multiple branches of government. It is representing the Beer Institute before the Office of the United States Trade Representative, the Department of Commerce and the White House regarding trade matters. Other clients include Brambles and Charter Communications. Another key area of strength is handling the political side of mergers; the team provides ongoing assistance to Monsanto regarding a $62m merger with Bayer. In Washington DC, Jamie Gorelick, Jonathan Yarowsky and Thomas Strickland are key contacts. Ken Salazar is the name to note in the Denver office.

Arnold & Porter is noted for its advocacy expertise in the healthcare, insurance and education sectors, but also acts for clients from technology and environmental industries. On behalf of AT&T, the group provided strategic advice to members of Congress pertaining to communications issues impacting wireless and video policy, among other regulatory matters. In another example, the team assists McGraw-Hill Education with a $200m college completion campaign to engage more directly with education stakeholders and advocate for policy issues in the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act, such as college affordability and use of data analytics to monitor student performance. Kevin O’Neill and Charles Landgraf jointly head the practice.

Tax policy is Miller & Chevalier Chartered’s core specialty, and the team includes many former senior government officials. The firm has seen an uptick in legislative work and is representing a broad range of clients before Congress, the IRS and the Treasury in connection with the comprehensive reform of the Internal Revenue Code. In 2016, the group represented Alaska Native Corporation Shee Atiká before Congress and the US Forest Service in connection with the federal government’s acquisition of 22,000 acres within the Admiralty Island National Monument wilderness; the team continues to assist the client with the multi-phase transaction. Trade associations and large multinational corporations are also clients. Marc Gerson, who was made firm chair in July 2017, is the key name.

Elizabeth Moeller leads Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP’s ‘very responsive’ public policy team, which is well known for handling a lot of international work, such as assisting the Cayman Islands’ Ministry of Financial Services with deepening diplomatic relationships with US leaders overseeing tax and financial services legislation. Cybersecurity expert Brian Finch advises FireEye on legislative defense authorization and funding matters. Former Texas Congressman and senior counsel Greg Laughlin attracts praise for his ‘energy and enthusiasm’. Associate Aimee Ghosh is also recommended.


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    The new anti-money laundering ( AML ) law of the UAE took effect at the end of October 2018. Containing features recommended by the Financial Action Task Force ( FATF ), the new law introduces subtle but important changes to the AML landscape in the UAE. 
  • Confidentiality Under Renewed Focus

    The UAE federal government has recently issued a raft of important legislation, addressing and in many ways updating areas of law that are key to businesses in the jurisdiction. Amongst this legislation is Federal Decree-Law 14 of 2018 concerning the central bank and the organisation of financial institutions and activities (the New Banking Law ) and Federal Decree-Law 20 of 2018 concerning anti-money laundering and anti-terrorism financing (the New AML Law ). Both the New Banking Law and the New AML Law repeal and replace the previous legislation on their respective subjects. Importantly, the New Banking Law and the New AML Law have together enhanced the protection afforded to confidential information under UAE law, in particular where financial and legal service providers and their customers and clients are concerned. 
  • Israel Chapter in The Virtual Currency Regulation Review

    Earlier this year, the Israel Tax Authority (ITA) issued two circulars, one on the taxation of digital tokens and the second addressing the taxation of utility tokens in initial coin offerings (ICOs). Additionally, in March, the Israel Securities Authority (ISA) released a detailed interim report by the Committee for the Regulation of Public Offerings of Decentralized Cryptocurrency Coins (Report) (with a follow-up report due to come out around October 2018). Moreover, it is expected that before the end of 2018, legislation will come into force that for the first time will see Israeli primary legislation define virtual currencies as financial assets and mandate licensing for related services, as is later discussed in detail.

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