Firm Profile > Morrison & Foerster LLP > Washington DC, United States

Morrison & Foerster LLP
2000 PENNSYLVANIA AVENUE, NW
SUITE 6000
WASHINGTON, DC 20006-1888
United States

Dispute resolution > Product liability, mass tort and class action - defense: consumer products (including tobacco) Tier 1

Morrison & Foerster LLP specializes in defending class actions and multi-party serial tort litigation, providing a one-stop shop for product manufacturers and resellers. The firm is experienced in pre- and post-market regulatory compliance, product labeling and litigation risk assessment. Additional areas of expertise include product recalls, crisis management, and insurance and indemnification issues. Splitting her time between San Diego and San Francisco, Erin Bosman acts as national coordinating and trial counsel in class action cases and multi-district proceedings. Bosman jointly leads the team with Tiffany Cheung, who has experience defending clients in consumer class actions, particularly in relation to Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) disputes, as well as in matters involving unfair business practices and consumer fraud laws. Also notable is Julie Park, who focuses on multi-jurisdictional litigation in state and federal court for pharmaceutical and consumer product giants. All named lawyers are based in San Francisco unless stated otherwise.

Practice head(s):

Erin Bosman; Tiffany Cheung

Other key lawyers:

Julie Park; James Schurz; Penelope Preovolos; Robert Falk

Key clients

The Hershey Company, the National Confectioners Association and Barry Callebaut USA, Inc.

Fitbit

Coffee Joint Defense Group

Government > Government contracts Tier 1

Morrison & Foerster LLP fields a team of 'phenomenal lawyers', who are widely recognized among the market leaders in high-profile government contract matters. Joint practice chairs Kevin Mullen and Alex Ward are the main figureheads; together they handle a variety of complex and incredibly high-value false claims and bid protest litigation for clients including defense contractors. Northern Virginia based Bradley Wine co-chairs the firm’s litigation department and has over twenty years of experience representing government contractors in various industries. Another key figure is James Tucker, who has experience in large bid-protest work before the Government Accountability Office. The team also handles internal investigations and corporate government transactions, areas where Damien Specht is name to note. Also recommended are former co-chairs David Churchill and Jay DeVecchioDaniel Chudd and Tina Reynolds, who specializes in cybersecurity-related matters.

Practice head(s):

Kevin Mullen; Alex Ward

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘James Tucker is the leading light in the practice, a brilliant legal mind.’

A team of phenomenal lawyers.’

Morrison & Foerster has an exceptional government contracts practice, able to offer a broad range of services well calibrated to the seriousness and difficulty of the issue at hand. David Churchill has a very steady hand, and is adept at synthesizing and presenting issues to senior leadership. He is not alone. I’d particularly cite Kevin Mullen and Alex Ward as well-rounded and skilled partners, capable of handling the most serious matters. Dan Chudd is very strong as a mid-level partner, with a wide range of substantive and skill-based (i.e., bid protest and litigation). Jim Tucker is an associate who will be a superstar. They are my go-to firm.’

Key clients

Accenture Federal Services

Arlington Capital Partners

Behrman Capital

Calspan Corporation

IDEMIA Identity & Security USA

Leonardo DRS

Naval Group

SOS International

Vectrus

Verizon Business Network Services

Intellectual property > Patents: licensing Tier 1

Morrison & Foerster LLP combines a wide geographical footprint with broad sector expertise, making for particular strength in multi-jurisdictional matters for a varied base of stellar technology clients. Semiconductor, software technology and life sciences clients as well as blockchain, fintech, AI and virtual and augmented reality players rely on the group's experience in technology transactions. Matters range from the patent licensing aspects of mergers and acquisitions to the licensing components of the development and commercialization of new products and services. Outsourcing agreements and collaboration agreements also appear in the caseload. Practice head Aaron Rubin in San Francisco is the main contact. Technology transaction specialist Matthew Karlyn joined the Boston office from Foley & Lardner LLP in April 2019.

Practice head(s):

Aaron Rubin

Other key lawyers:

Tessa Schwartz; Paul Jahn; Stephanie Sharron; Rufus Pichler; Vivian Hanson

Key clients

CEVA

Gates MRI

ON Semiconductor

Salesforce

SoftBank

Vista Equity Partners

Walgreens

Media, technology and telecoms > Cyber law (including data privacy and data protection)

Fielding 'talented attorneys specializing in a diverse array of privacy sub-specialties across numerous jurisdictions', Morrison & Foerster LLP's privacy and data security practice is highlighted by clients as 'a top-tier one-stop shop'. New York-based Miriam Wugmeister ('an incredible command of the law') heads the practice group, which was recently strengthened by the addition of Kristen Mathews in New York. Mathews joined from Proskauer Rose LLP, alongside associate Tiffany Quach, and handles a range of complex privacy and cybersecurity issues, with particular expertise in the financial services and technology industries. Other names to note include Julie O’Neill, in Boston, who defends clients in enforcement actions brought by the FTC and non-US data protection authorities; 'exceptional' Washington-DC cybersecurity expert John Carlin, who boasts 'deep and diverse government experience'; and Christine Lyon in Palo Alto who is most active in the technology sector. Recently promoted of counsel Melissa Crespo, in Washington DC, and 'talented' associate Mary Race in Palo Alto have experience advising on issues relating to the HIPPA and CCPA, respectively. Andrew Serwin left for DLA Piper LLP (US).

Practice head(s):

Miriam Wugmeister

Other key lawyers:

Julie O’Neill; Melissa Crespo; Purvi Patel; Christine Lyon; Mary Race; Tiffany Quach

Testimonials

Practical advice given in a timely manner! They listen and provide guidance that can be applied to your actual situation.

Large number of talented attorneys specializing in a diverse array of privacy sub-specialties across numerous jurisdictions. For complex projects requiring multidisciplinary privacy expertise, they are a top-tier one-stop shop. Particularly strong on EU law, financial privacy, employment privacy, and M&A support.

We’ve worked with a few other firms on issues in this area, and Morrison & Foerster’s team has consistently been able to thoroughly understand our unique context, in order to provide expertly tailored and incredibly helpful advice. This has been an evolution over time – looking at the advice they give us now compared to that when our relationship started, it’s so much more bespoke and useful. I suppose that is to be expected, but I can say from experience that not all outside counsel are able to so thoroughly understand such context, and adjust their viewpoint and advice.

Christine Lyon provides clear, cool-headed advice even in stressful situations.

Mary Race is a talented and responsive senior associate.

Their advice has always been practical and practicable – easy to understand and to effect, because of their deep understanding of our organization and its goals.

This team is incredibly responsive and pragmatic. What sets them apart is their ability to provide business-minded advice.

Miriam Wugmeister has an incredible command of the law and can apply it in a business friendly manner. Miriam is also aware of budgetary constraints and does not try to add work just to increase the bill.

The Mofo team has deep experience in both privacy and cybersecurity, and their team covers all regions of the world. They are a true one-stop shop for global privacy and security advice. The team also has deep government experience, which in my view separates it from other firms, particularly in the cybersecurity space. That experience and those connections are invaluable when dealing with law enforcement, state actors, and other high profile incidents. The team also has expertise in our industry.

I’ve also found the team to be very deep and full of strong lawyers, from the senior partners to the junior associates. Unlike with some firms, I am comfortable interacting with MoFo’s junior and mid-level associates and have found them to be knowledgeable attorneys with good judgment.

John Carlin is an exceptional attorney with deep and diverse government experience. He has significant expertise in cybersecurity matters, and his government experience is critical in matters that require working with law enforcement and in high stress crisis management situations. His advice is highly strategic, and he is able to see all sides of an issue. He is also very down-to-earth and accessible, and his level of client service is the same regardless of whether he is speaking with a line in-house attorney, the general counsel, or the Board of Directors.

Alex Iftimie, an of counsel in the practice, has excellent judgment and strong experience, including in the government. He is the lead Mofo attorney on our day-to-day matters, and also takes a leading role in higher profile matters. He is a trusted advisor and counselor.

The team at Morrison and Foerster, at least in my opinion, is unique in that they have privacy experts globally. If we had a specific question for a specific country, they were able to identify an internal resource right away (or appoint an outside firm that was highly recommended). The guidance from all individuals at Morrison and Foerster was consistent and practical. They took the time to learn our business and provide practical guidance that we could easily use.

They were also quick to respond and provided responses in easy to understand format. They also appreciated you challenging their analysis, and they were able to provide legal advice from numerous points of view.

Chris Lyon (Partner) and Mary Race (Associate) were always responsive, and if they didn’t have an answer, they would find someone internally who could answer. Chris also took time to travel to our office to train our new General Counsel and Compliance Officer on GDPR which was very much appreciated.

Mary and Chris were always articulate and to the point with their responses, and never made me feel like their suggestions were the only way to conduct business. They took the time to learn about our business, and provide practical guidance to support our global manufacturing company.

The team has exceptional practitioner experience.

The team has exceptional relationships through out the legal, government and private sector and are able to create communities of professionals.

John Carlin and Miriam Wugmesiter have VERY unique real like experience that they’re able to translate into practical advice for large complicated multi-national companies. They are available and always engaged in matters.

Kristen Mathews is highly-competent, knowledgeable, dependable and accessible.

Key clients

Altaba (formerly Yahoo!)

Marriott

Visa

Samsonite

Interpublic Group

Salesforce

Unity Technologies

Adidas

Target

Dispute resolution > Appellate: courts of appeals / Appellate: supreme courts (states and federal)

Morrison & Foerster LLP's appellate group is jointly led by two former Assistants to the Solicitor General, Deanne Maynard and Joseph Palmore, who also acts as managing partner of the Washington DC office. The team has impressive appellate strength across the country; in the course of six weeks during the reported period, it presented arguments before the Federal, DC, Second, Eight, and Ninth Circuits. Indeed, the group has particular experience at the Ninth Circuit, with the past year being no exception. A team led by Maynard prevailed on behalf of a multinational supply chain management company in four separate appeals concerning alleged RICO violations, False Claims Act violations, and an arbitration clause contained in the client’s terms of service. Further, the group is well-placed to handle matters in California-based courts thanks in part to the experience of senior of counsel Miriam Vogel, who has served as Justice on the California Court of Appeal. Equally well-versed in the US Supreme Court arena, Palmore is leading the team on the representation of the respondents in ARCO v Christian, which raises questions concerning pollution cleanup costs and the federal legislation regarding the so-called Superfund sites. Brian Matsui is also noted for his work on patent appeals.

Practice head(s):

Deanne Maynard; Joseph Palmore

Other key lawyers:

Brian Matsui; Miriam Vogel; James Sigel

Key clients

Balsam Brands

Bank of America

City of Santa Monica

National Abortion Federation

NYS Citizen’s Coalition for Children

Oath

Peabody Energy

Sandoz

Sotheby’s

TouchTunes

Dispute resolution > Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense

Morrison & Foerster LLP's team is composed of former high-ranking federal prosecutors, SEC and DOJ officials, senior government regulators, White House and FBI counsel, providing clients with an impressively deep bench of expertise. The group is particularly noted for FCPA and anti-corruption work, which is jointly led by Washington DC's Charles Duross and James Koukios, both of whom are experienced trial attorneys. Other areas of expertise in the department include matters involving cybersecurity, securities, financial and accounting fraud, national security, AML and FCA. Duross co-chairs the investigations and white-collar defense group alongside Craig Martin in San Francisco and New York's  Ruti Smithline, whose practice has a particular focus on issues arising out of Latin America. New York's Carrie Cohen is the go-to practitioner for c-suite workplace misconduct issues, while Amanda Aikman has notable experience handling monitorships. 2019 was a year of massive expansion for the San Francisco team, which took on, among others: former counsel to the attorney general Alex Iftimie , Bonnie Lau from Dentons and Christine Wong from an in-house position at Fujitsu and Eliot Adelson (with an impressive roster of Japanese and US clients) from Kirkland & Ellis LLP.

Practice head(s):

Charles Duross; Craig Martin; Ruti Smithline

Testimonials

In house accounting expertise excellent; partner engagement excellent

The entire team, especially Craig Martin, is very knowledgeable and responsive.’

The team brings together an amazing group of talent, clearly cultivated and trained in this specialty.’

Ron White has a background of unique and unequaled experience. He is very responsive, empathetic, pro-active, tireless, and develops a strategy of defense few can match

Key clients

Odebrecht monitorship

Michael L. Cohen (Och Ziff Capital Management)

New York City Council

Finance > Restructuring (including bankruptcy): corporate Tier 2

Morrison & Foerster LLP's restructuring and bankruptcy practice's wide offering does not only encompass Chapter 11 proceedings (of which the most notable examples are PG&E and Sears Holding) and a broad array of Chapter 15 cases across the globe (with the main locations being Puerto Rico and Latin America), but also a highly appreciated bankruptcy counsel service, carried out by the firm's mediation group. In its capacity, the team is very active on the debtor side - but has a special affinity with creditor representation. Lorenzo Marinuzzi and former judge James Peck lead the department, Jennifer Marines is a key practitioner.

Practice head(s):

Lorenzo Marinuzzi; James Peck

Other key lawyers:

Jennifer Marines; Dennis Jenkins

Testimonials

‘The Mofo team is always well prepared and thorough in its analysis of the legal matters at hand’

‘Dennis Jenkins (partner) and Raff Ferraioli (associate) are the day-to-day lawyers that make the team what it is. Dennis has a calm demeanor and a sense of getting things done thoroughly and correctly. Raff is detail-oriented and dependable and shows a solid understanding of the specifics of oil & gas law’

Key clients

Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Windstream Holdings and its affiliated debtors

Ad Hoc Group of holders of debt issued or guaranteed by the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico

Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Cloud Peak Energy and certain of its subsidiaries

An ad hoc group of first lien noteholders of Sanchez Energy Corp

Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of aerospace manufacturer The NORDAM Group and affiliated debtors

Ad Hoc Group of holders of EP Energy’s 1.125 & 1.25 lien secured notes

Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors of Westmoreland Coal Company and affiliated debtors

The liquidators of Kingate Global Fund and Kingate Euro Fund in Madoff Clawback Proceedings

Various creditors in the ongoing Chapter 11 bankruptcy cases of Sears Holdings Corporation and its affiliated debtors

Ad Hoc Group of Puerto Rico Ports Authority Bondholders, which currently consists of six alternative asset managers

Three non-debtor affiliates of Sears Holding Company

Ad Hoc Group of Convertible Noteholders and Wilmington Trust

Various creditors and hedge funds, as well the Pacific Forest and Watershed Lands Stewardship Council, and the debtors in the Chapter 11 cases of Pacific Gas & Electric

The Puerto Rico Public Buildings Authority (PBA) Funds

M&A/corporate and commercial > Venture capital and emerging companies Tier 2

Life sciences mandates form the backbone of Morrison & Foerster LLP's practice, with healthcare, technology and fintech matters also prominent in the team's workload. In 2019 the firm opened an office in Boston which houses Ori Solomon, who joined from Proskauer Rose LLP; Solomon represented Lux Capital in its $50m Series C financing of Cala Health. Other highlights include Steve Rowles in San Diego acting for Geneos Therapeutics in its $10m Series A financing. Solomon and Rowles share leadership of the practice with San Francisco-based Murray Indick. In Palo Alto, Timothy Harris is well known for his extensive experience in advising start-ups and investors. In October 2019 Thomas Knox moved to the Washington DC office of King & Spalding LLP.

Practice head(s):

Murray Indick; Steve Rowles; Ori Solomon

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Rakuten Medical

New Enterprise Associates

Aira Tech Corp

Visa

Acea Therapeutics

ARCH Venture Partners

Hambrecht Ducera Growth Venture Management

SoftBank Group

Geneos Therapeutics

Lux Capital

Fuel50

SoFresh

Vetica Labs

Quadrille Capital

Adicet Bio

FanAI

Media, technology and telecoms > Advertising and marketing: litigation Tier 2

Morrison & Foerster LLP has a solid reputation for consumer protection work, acting for a variety of food and beverage manufacturers and distributors and other major consumer products companies in false advertising class actions and MDLs. In addition, the team handles TCPA litigation for publishers, automotive companies and a well-known global medical supplies distributor and healthcare IT company. The firm's class actions and mass tort group is jointly led by David Fioccola in New York and Erin Bosman, who divides time between San Diego and San Francisco. Other key figures in San Francisco include firm-wide litigation co-chair Tiffany Cheung and Claudia Vetesi, the latter of whom won a number of motions on behalf of Unilever in 2019. Los Angeles-based David McDowell jointly chairs the firm-wide litigation group alongside Cheung.

Practice head(s):

Erin Bosman; David Fioccola

Key clients

Unilever

FanDuel, Inc.

Costco Wholesale Corporation

LexisNexis

Fitbit, Inc.

The Kroger Co.

Chobani, LLC

Media, technology and telecoms > Fintech Tier 2

Morrison & Foerster LLP's industry-focused practice group brings together multi-disciplinary expertise in financial services, technology, intellectual property, data protection and cybersecurity to advise its emerging bank and non-bank fintech clients on a full range of issues facing the sector. Key contacts include financial regulatory expert Obrea PoindexterSean Ruff and corporate partner Eric McCrath in San Francisco, and Palo Alto-based Stephanie Sharron.

Real estate > Real estate Tier 2

Home to ‘a deep bench of seasoned lawyers’, Morrison & Foerster LLP has a ‘solid reputation' built on a 'very client-focused’ approach and extensive experience of real estate finance deals. The group has broad core strengths in equity finance, large syndicated lending, construction loans and deals involving multiple forms of debt. The structuring and formation of joint ventures and real estate funds for the operation, development and ownership of real estate is a further strength. New York-based Mark Edelstein (‘always available') heads the department. Thomas McGovern is Boston is also recommended; his workload encompasses various restructurings and workouts of troubled real estate loans. The practice group has experience in all major asset classes including office, residential, retail, industrial and hospitality.

Practice head(s):

Mark Edelstein

Other key lawyers:

Thomas McGovern; Thomas Fileti; Jeffrey Temple; Lawrence Ceriello; Christopher Delson

Testimonials

The team is extremely knowledgeable about the real estate industry and provides extremely client focused coverage.  They understand current issues in the market and are willing to act as advisors with helpful advice when appropriate.  The real estate coverage team is always available, which is crucial in this space.’

‘What sets this team apart is the quality of their depth.  It is not just one or two individuals that provide coverage but rather the entire team, with all of the participants exhibiting high quality work. This is a departure from other firms where they have B and C teams, within the practice.’

‘Practical advice and counsel.’

‘Willing to use market contacts.’

‘They continue to be fantastic at hosting events that put me in front of the people that I need to be in front of to generate more business. This is invaluable. From a practice standpoint, they get our documents and advise us appropriately, making the job easier on larger, more complex deals.’

‘Mark Edelstein is always available. There is never a time that a phone call to him goes unanswered. Beyond that, they know the market so well and provide great guidance on how we could legally structure a deal to ensure it can be sold in the market.’

‘The team has local expertise in multiple markets with a deep bench of seasoned lawyers. They are very client focused and have a solid reputation.’

‘Jeff Temple, Keith Print and Billy Hildbold each have exceptional legal expertise. They have the ability to work through complex transactions and provide workable solutions to complicated issues.’ 

Key clients

Bizzi & Partners Development

BlackRock Realty Advisors

Boyd Gaming Corporation Corp.

CIBC World Markets

Citigroup Global Markets Realty Corp.

Gemdale Corporation

GLP

Goldman Sachs

Hines Interests

HSBC

Jernigan Capital

LendLease Investments

M&T Bank

Mori Trust

PCCP

People’s United Bank

PNC

Pontiac Land Group

SoftBank

UNIZO Holdings Company

Wells Fargo

Antitrust > Cartel Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP is frequently involved in cartel and competition investigations, in addition to providing risk assessments and compliance to Fortune 500 clients. Jeff Jaeckel, who also co-chairs the global antitrust practice, is in charge of the US department. He sits in Washington DC, where the following team members are based. Lisa Phelan adds valuable criminal investigation and enforcement experience to her antitrust practice, which she combines with white collar work. Megan Gerking also focuses on government-facing antitrust matters alongside her litigation practice. The group covers an extensive array of industry sectors including automotive and pharmaceuticals. In October 2019, the San Francisco office welcomed Eliot Adelson from Kirkland & Ellis LLP, a significant addition to the litigation and government investigation practice.

Practice head(s):

Jeff Jaeckel

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

CSX Transportation

Entrata, Inc.

Fujitsu Ltd.

Gary McDonald

Matsuo Electric Co., Ltd.

Murata Manufacturing

Nexstar Media

Oath (formerly Yahoo!)

ON Semiconductor

Softbank Group Corp.

Teradata

Antitrust > Civil litigation/class actions: defense Tier 3

The service portfolio at Morrison & Foerster LLP ranges from defense of follow-on cartel damages claims to class action and multidistrict litigation as well as individual representation across numerous industry sectors. Jeff Jaeckel, who works out of Washington DC and operates a diverse antitrust practice, is responsible for the team. Also located in the capital, Brad Lui often litigates antitrust matters related to supranational, sub-sovereign and agency bonds, fruit labeling equipment and telecoms. The San Francisco office received a boost in 2019 thanks to the arrival of Bonnie Lau from Dentons in April and Eliot Adelson from Kirkland & Ellis LLP in October.

Practice head(s):

Jeff Jaeckel

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘Smart, experienced antitrust practitioners.’ 

Key clients

CSX Transportation

Entrata, Inc.

Fujitsu Ltd.

Gary McDonald

Matsuo Electric Co., Ltd.

Murata Manufacturing

Nexstar Media

Oath (formerly Yahoo!)

ON Semiconductor

Softbank Group Corp.

Teradata

Dispute resolution > Leading trial lawyers Tier 3

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.

Key clients

Uber Technologies

Clearwater Analytics

Vmware

Dispute resolution > Product liability, mass tort and class action - defense: pharmaceuticals and medical devices Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP has a track record in defending clients in multi-party serial tort and mass tort litigation, serving as national counsel in federal courts and in various state jurisdictions throughout the US. Made up of experienced trial and appellate lawyers, the team has expertise includes representing pharmaceutical and medical device clients in mass tort litigation, labelling requirements, risk assessments, recalls and consumer fraud. The group is is co-led by Erin Bosman, who splits her time between San Diego and San Francisco and has experience acting as national coordinating and trial counsel in class action cases and multi-district proceedings; and consumer class actions specialist Tiffany Cheung in San Francisco.

Practice head(s):

Erin Bosman; Tiffany Cheung

Other key lawyers:

Julie Park

Key clients

MicroPort Orthopedics

Prelude Fertility

McKesson Corporation

Dispute resolution > Product liability, mass tort and class action - defense: toxic tort Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP is experienced defending multi-party serial tort and mass tort litigation. The firm acts for product manufacturers and resellers, providing advice on regulatory compliance, product labelling, and litigation risk assessment. The practice also has expertise in assisting clients with matters including product development, crisis management, insurance, and acquisitions involving ongoing product liability claims. Splitting her time between San Diego and San Francisco, Erin Bosman is known for expertise as national coordinating and trial counsel in class action cases, multijurisdictional, and multidistrict proceedings. She co-leads the team with San Francisco-based Tiffany Cheung, who focuses on defending clients in consumer class actions in a broad range of industries.

Practice head(s):

Erin Bosman; Tiffany Cheung

Other key lawyers:

James Schurz; William Tarantino; Robert Falk

Key clients

The Hershey Company, the National Confectioners Association, and Barry Callebaut USA

Coffee Joint Defense Group

Bimbo Bakeries USA

Dispute resolution > Securities litigation: defense Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP's securities litigation, enforcement and white-collar defense group handles federal and state securities class actions, derivative litigation, merger litigation, US Attorney and SEC enforcement investigations and litigation, white-collar  matters, internal investigations and other complex litigation involving shareholder suits and corporate governance. The firm is able to handle cases in any jurisdiction across the US, thanks to the presence of securities litigators in many of its offices. Jordan Eth in San Francisco, Joel Haims in New York and Dimitria Doufekias in Washington DC are co-chairs of the practice. In class actions, the firm frequently acts for clients from a broad range of sectors including technology, software, media, banking, financial services and consumer products. It is also a key adviser to officers, directors and special committees in derivative cases.

Practice head(s):

Jordan Eth; Joel Haims

Key clients

Softbank

McKesson

Acer Therapeutics

Altaba fka Yahoo!

Precision Castparts

Oracle

Walmart.com

RH Inc. and its Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer

Fitbit Inc. and certain of its directors and officers

TerraVia Holdings, Inc. (previously known as Solazyme, Inc.)

Blackberry Ltd. and certain of its offers and directors

Mallinckrodt

Medequities Realty Trust

Ducera LLC

Education Realty Trust Inc.

Farmland Partners Inc.

Michael Cohen

David Blaszczak

Mobileye N.V.

Stanley Perla, Abby Wenzel, directors of Hospitality Investors Trust, Inc.

TriLinc Global Impact Fund LLC

William Spears, former director of UnitedHealth Group

Finance > Structured finance: derivatives and structured products Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP advises clients including mid-market and regional banks, investment funds and corporate end-users on a variety of transactional and regulatory derivatives matters. The practice group is jointly headed by commodities expert David Kaufman, and Vladimir Maly, who divides his time between New York and London, and specializes in equity derivatives in relation to cross-border financing transactions and M&A.

Practice head(s):

David Kaufman; Vladimir Maly

Key clients

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce

Ping An Real Estate Capital

RH

Adara

Oxygen

Tiberius Asset Management

Arrowgrass Master Fund

AXA Investment Managers

Natixis

Royal Bank of Canada

ING

Santander

Intellectual property > Patents: litigation (full coverage) Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP is known for its strength in the life sciences and technology sectors. Key figures Richard Hung and Michael Jacobs are based in the San Francisco office. Nicole Smith joined Jones Day in August 2019.

Practice head(s):

Richard Hung; Michael Jacobs

Intellectual property > Trade secrets (litigation and non-contentious matters) Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP has a track record in trade secret litigation in the technology space. Key contacts in this area include Kenneth Kuwayti in Palo Alto and Michael Jacobs in San Francisco.

Labor and employment > Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: transactional Tier 3

Co-heading Morrison & Foerster LLP’s employee benefits and executive compensation practice from New York, Ron Aizen, Ann Becchina and Domnick Bozzetti frequently advise on high-value M&A transactions and IPOs. The team’s client base spans early-stage companies, venture capital funds, private equity houses and publicly-listed companies. As well as providing bespoke equity-based and deferred compensation advice to sophisticated technology clients, Becchina is also the firm’s go-to ERISA Title 1 and prohibited transactions expert for pension plan or investment funds clients, having taken over from the recently-retired former practice head Paul Borden.

Practice head(s):

Ron Aizen; Ann Becchina; Domnick Bozzetti

Key clients

ON Semiconductor Corporation

SoftBank Group

Sprint Corporation

MedEquities Realty Trust, Inc.

Renesas Electronics Corporation

Science Applications International Corporation

Hortonworks, Inc.

ACEA Biosciences, Inc.

Main Post Partners

The Happy Planner

Gryphon Investors

RegEd

FujiFilm

Media, technology and telecoms > Outsourcing Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP handles technology outsourcing deals, offering 'insightful and business-minded' advice to clients in the pharmaceutical, healthcare, cyber security and insurance sectors. 'Tough negotiator' Vivian Hanson, the New York practice head who is cited for 'in-depth, well-reasoned and expert advice', leads a team that acts for a mix of international and domestic corporations. The department was boosted by Matthew Karlyn, who joined from Foley & Lardner LLP bringing 20 years of experience representing clients in the life sciences and technology sectors, while  Thomas Knox  departed to join King & Spalding LLP. San Francisco-based Paul Jahn is another name to note.

Practice head(s):

Vivian Hanson

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

Vivian Hanson understands the big picture of client’s deal goals with very detail-oriented mindset to manage the day to day negotiation. She is a very tough negotiator for the vendor.’

The team possesses experts in their field, thoughtful negotiators on transactions. They provide insightful and business-minded input and guidance.’

Vivian Hanson is a fantastic lawyer and counselor. She provides in-depth, well-reasoned and expert advice.’

Media, technology and telecoms > Technology transactions Tier 3

Headed by Aaron Rubin, the team at Morrison & Foerster LLP handles software and technology licensing and development agreements, M&A-related transactions, and intellectual property issues relating to technology deals. Firm managing partner Tessa Schwartz is advising a carbon removal venture company on a joint development agreement to advance the development of carbon capture technology. Paul Jahn, William Schwartz and Rufus Pichler are other key figures. All named lawyers are based in San Francisco.

Practice head(s):

Aaron Rubin

Key clients

ON Semiconductor

Salesforce

SoftBank

Vista Equity Partners

Walgreens

CEVA

Gates MRI

Real estate > Real estate investment trusts (REITs) Tier 3

Morrison & Foerster LLP is recognized for its ‘many years of experience in all types of transactions’ relating to traded and non-traded REITS, include securities and financing deals, M&A and asset acquisition. Through those years of experience the team has developed expertise across a range of asset classes, and has been particularly active in deals involving retail, mixed-use, healthcare, and industrial assets. David Slotkin (‘timely’ and ‘practical’) heads the department in DC alongside Justin Salon (‘strong business judgement’). The practice was further strengthened by the arrival of Heath Linsky from Morris, Manning & Martin, LLP, an expert in general corporate matters.

Practice head(s):

Justin Salon; David Slotkin

Other key lawyers:

Heath Linsky; Alice Connaughton; Andy Campbell; Lauren Bellerjeau

Testimonials

‘Very competent, very responsive, deep bench of talent.’

‘Justin Salon – strong business judgment with top notch legal technical skills. John Hensley – outstanding associate, he will be a great partner when the time comes.’

‘The REIT team has many years of experience as advisors in all types of transactions—M&A, compensation, litigation, deal structuring, tax, etc. My company has used all of the above and we thought the service, knowledge and results were outstanding.’

‘My main contacts are David Slotkin, Andy Campbell, Justin Salon and Lauren Bellerjeau. They provide timely, practical advice. They have many years of experience and can usual draw from a prior engagement for many of the issues that arise.’

Key clients

MedEquities Realty Trust

Carter Validus Mission Critical REIT II

Alexandria Real Estate Equities

Steadfast Apartment REIT

Equity Residential (Designated Underwriters Counsel)

Farmland Partners

Sandler O’Neill + Partners

Janney Montgomery Scott

UDR

Jernigan Capital

Bank of America Merrill Lynch

Armada Hoffler Properties

Procaccianti Hotel REIT

Black Creek Industrial REIT IV

Hines Global Income Trust

Broad Street Realty

Whitestone REIT

Robert W. Baird & Co.

LEDIC Realty Company

Plymouth Industrial REIT (Designated Underwriters Counsel)

Sotherly Hotels (Designated Underwriters Counsel)

Antitrust > Merger control Tier 4

Morrison & Foerster LLP coordinates merger and acquisition reviews in the US, Europe and Asia as well as related disputes. Jeff Jaeckel in Washington DC, who is acting on secondment as Sprint’s global M&A counsel, co-chairs the global antitrust group with Tokyo-based Rony GerritsJon Gowdy in Washington DC showcases deep knowledge of antitrust law beyond the US when securing antitrust clearances for mergers, acquisitions, and other strategic transactions around the globe. David Meyer is another name to note in the capital, in particular for his recent role assisting Softbank Group in the merger of Sprint and T-Mobile US.

Practice head(s):

Jeff Jaeckel

Other key lawyers:

Dispute resolution > Financial services litigation Tier 4

Morrison & Foerster LLP has significant experience in consumer class actions, and also represents clients in investigations and regulatory enforcement actions at state and federal level. Michael Miller represents clients in a range of state and federal claims, including antitrust cases, class actions, and cases under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Also recommended are David Fioccola, who represents clients in commercial disputes and consumer class actions, both in litigation and arbitration; and Natalie Fleming Nolen, who has experience of antitrust litigation, consumer class actions and state-led investigations. James McGuire left the firm to join Buckley LLP in January 2020.

Practice head(s):

David Fioccola; Michael Miller

Other key lawyers:

Natalie Fleming Nolen; Tiffani Figueroa

Finance > Capital markets: debt offerings

Handling the full spread of private, public and cross-border offerings, Morrison & Foerster LLP’s diverse practice is complemented by its strong skill sets in several supplementary areas, including bank regulatory and real estate. Among its core strengths, the capital markets team works seamlessly with the REITs department to offer a particularly prominent offering in REIT-related issuances. The group’s recent experience also spans offerings in the consumer products, energy, life sciences and telecommunications spheres. Key names include Scott Lesmes, whose broad practice focus takes in securities offerings, compliance and corporate governance matters. Lesmes co-leads the capital markets group together with San Francisco-based emerging company specialist Gavin Grover and David Lynn, a former chief counsel of the division of corporation finance at the SEC. REIT co-chairs David Slotkin and Justin Salon are also highly active in the debt space. Named partners are based in Washington DC, unless otherwise stated.

Practice head(s):

Gavin Grover; Dave Lynn; Scott Lesmes

Other key lawyers:

Brandon Parris; Justin Salon; David Slotkin

Key clients

Deutsche Bank Securities Inc.

McKesson Corporation

Krystal Biotech, Inc.

Vonage Holdings Corp.

Boyd Gaming Corporation

RH

Aspire Capital Partners, LLC

Citibank

Bank of America Merrill Lynch

WGL Holdings

D.A. Davidson

Shell International Finance (Designated underwriters counsel)

UDR, Inc.

Equity Residential (Designated underwriters counsel)

Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc.

Deutsche Bank Securities Inc.

McKesson Corporation

Finance > Commercial lending

Morrison & Foerster LLP's well regarded financial transactions group is a trusted advisor to corporate borrowers, private equity sponsors, banks, and credit funds. The firm has invested heavily in the practice and opened an office in Boston in 2019 following its recruitment of the finance team from Riemer & Braunstein, including well regarded partner David Ephraim and its New York-based partner Jonathan Jacobs. While the east coast practice expanded - and it is in New York that finance chair Mark Wojciechowski is based - the west coast team also stands out for its strong niche in tech-based financings. San Francisco-based partners such as Dario Avram and Jill Feldman are especially noted in this area.

Practice head(s):

Mark Wojciechowski

Testimonials

‘Great finance lawyers who are excellent business partners for their clients. They know their clients inside out and are very responsive and commercially savvy’

‘Dario Avram is hard-working and gives very helpful advice. He is good at understanding and advising on the business trade-offs of legal terms’

‘David Ephraim is an excellent lawyer and client relationship manager’

Key clients

Silicon Valley Bank

Spark Networks

Sprint Corp

Vector Capital

Finance > Financial services regulation Tier 4

'Knowledgeable, supportive and creative', Morrison & Foerster LLP has core strengths in handling the regulatory aspects of corporate transactions, and advising foreign financial services companies seeking to expand their US footprint. Moreover, the firm has substantial expertise in the consumer finance space, where it handles a range of supervisory and enforcement matters before the CFPB, including issues relating to the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. Barbara Mendelson, who previously worked at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, is best known for advising financial institutions on the acquisitions and sales of banking and non-banking firms; she also has experience of AML compliance and enforcement matters. Rick Fischer is one of the firm's main experts in regulatory matters involving privacy, data security, and e-commerce. In addition to traditional banking regulation, the team is also active in the area of fintech. Obrea Poindexter is particularly standout in the payments space, having built up a track record of advising on regulatory issues relating to credit, debit and prepaid cards. In a recent highlight, Poindexter assisted a large technology company with the launch of a new peer-to-peer lending platform. Another key figure is senior counsel Henry Fields, who has a wealth of experience in bank M&A and private equity transactions. The team also represents clients in investigations relating to economic sanctions and the Bank Secrecy Act.

Practice head(s):

Rick Fischer; Obrea Poindexter

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

‘The team are experts in the field of financial services regulation. They have comprehensive and thorough knowledge of this area and are able to provide accurate advice quickly.’

‘They are flexible and willing to go the extra mile to help us resolve our issues expeditiously.’

Industry focus > Energy: renewable/alternative power Tier 4

Despite being significantly depleted by a number of high-profile departures over the past few years, including in July 2019 that of the former team head Jeffrey Chester to Greenberg Traurig LLPMorrison & Foerster LLP still maintains a not insignificant presence on the West Coast. Los Angeles-based partner Elizabeth Sluder has a focus on renewables-related project financing and San Francisco-based Susan Mac Cormac has extensive experience representing startup to late-stage private companies within the clean technology, renewable energy and sustainable space.

Industry focus > Environment: litigation Tier 4

Based in California, Morrison & Foerster LLP handles a variety of environmental litigation, but stands out for its ability to reach successful outcomes in high-profile cases related to Proposition 65. Headed by William Tarantino, the team is also active toxic tort litigation, natural resources damage claims and matters involving the Endangered Species Act and Clean Water Act. Other key contacts include Michael Steel and Proposition 65 specialist Robert Falk. Named attorneys are based in San Francisco.

Practice head(s):

William Tarantino

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Coffee Joint Defense Group

County of Santa Clara (California)

Bimbo Bakeries USA

Major Retailers

Masco Corporation

Clorox Company

The Hershey Company

National Confectioners Association

Barry Callebaut USA

Industry focus > Environment: regulatory Tier 4

Morrison & Foerster LLP's environmental team is routinely engaged to advise on regulatory, compliance and enforcement matters, involving consumer products law, such as Proposition 65, as well as issues concerning the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Water Act and water rights. Environmental and consumer product safety expert William Tarantino leads the department out of San Francisco. Also in San Francisco, Robert Falk stands out for his expertise in matters relating to California Proposition 65, while Michael Steel is noted for his Clean Air Act work.

Practice head(s):

William Tarantino

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Coffee Joint Defense Group

County of Santa Clara (California)

Bimbo Bakeries USA

Major Retailers

Masco Corporation

Clorox Company

The Hershey Company

National Confectioners Association

Barry Callebaut USA

Industry focus > Healthcare: life sciences Tier 4

Morrison & Foerster LLP assists global pharmaceutical companies and emerging industry disruptors with matters involving patenting software and AI-related life sciences inventions, data licensing, data privacy issues and FDA approvals for data-driven diagnostics and medical devices. The firm established its Boston office in February 2019 with the addition of a 23-person finance group including corporate partner Ori Solomon, who joined from Proskauer Rose LLP; it also saw the formation of its FDA regulatory and life sciences compliance practice, led by Bethany Hills, who joined from Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C. Michael Ward heads the global life sciences group from the Boston office, which includes Catherine Polizzi, a key advisor to Celgene Corporation, which she advised on the $2.9bn acquisition of Abraxis BioScience, and the acquisition by Bristol Myers Squibb. Other key figures include Kate Murashige, a key name to note for patent prosecution and litigation; Palo Alto-based IP specialist Janet Xiao, who has particular expertise in China-related matters; and Jim Krenn, whose recent highlights include advising Rakuten Medical on a series of fundraising transactions.

Practice head(s):

Michael Ward

Other key lawyers:

Kate Murashige; Catherine Polizzi; Janet Xiao; Michael Jacobs; James Mullen; Ori Solomon; Jim Krenn; Anna Yuan; Jean Nguyen

Key clients

Adicet Bio

Ally Bridge Group

ARCH Venture Partners

Carlsmed

Celgene

Driscoll’s

Juno Therapeutics

Nevro Corp.

Rakuten Medical

SNIPR Biome

Triastek

Washington University in St. Louis

Intellectual property > Patents: prosecution (including re-examination and post-grant proceedings) Tier 4

Morrison & Foerster LLP's traditional strengths lie in the life sciences, technology and consumer product sectors, with the group's expertise in the prosecution of agricultural patents as a clear stand-out feature. With offices on both coasts, the team is geographically well placed to assist its high-profile client base.

M&A/corporate and commercial > M&A: large deals ($1bn+) Tier 4

Morrison & Foerster LLP has an established strength in technology M&A, maintained over the past year with several notable transactions. The team's sector strengths in software, telecoms, and real estate are evidenced by a sample of its key clients, which include Softbank, Sprint, and WeWork. The practice group is jointly led by Spencer Klein in New York and Eric McCrath in San Francisco, with the firm's West Coast group driving the bulk of its work for tech and innovation clients. San Francisco-based Brandon Parris and Washington DC-based David Slotkin advised Sprint and Softbank on the $59bn merger of the former with T-Mobile, which marked a significant shift within the telecoms market.

Practice head(s):

Spencer Klein; Eric McCrath

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

Axalta Coating Systems

BlackBerry

Boyd Gaming

DaVita

EdR

GLP (formerly Global Logistics Properties)

Infineon Technologies

ON Semiconductor

SoftBank

Sprint

Unity Technologies

Visa

VMware

Vonage

Walmart

Tax > US taxes: non-contentious Tier 4

Morrison & Foerster LLP has particular expertise in the tax treatment of REITs and real estate transactions, partnerships, and private equity. The practice is jointly led by Anthony Carbone, who advises on corporate reorganizations and fund formations, and Denver-based David Strong, who works alongside the firm's nationwide corporate and finance team to advise on the tax aspects of M&A, private equity and venture capital transactions, securities offerings and restructurings. Another name to note is Bernie Pistillo in San Francisco, who advises on federal, state and local tax issues in relation to corporate transactions and tax controversies. Craig Fields joined Blank Rome LLP in 2020.

Practice head(s):

Anthony Carbone; David Strong

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

VMware

BlackBerry

ON Semiconductor Corp

SoftBank Group Corp.

MedEquities Realty Trust

Black Creek Industrial REIT IV

Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC)

ACEA Biosciences

Walmart

Shell International Finance

Finance > Project finance

Morrison & Foerster LLP has a well-respected projects practice with good expertise on renewables projects. The team has a good track record advising clients on greenfield developments, refinancings, tax equity investments, acquisitions, and divestitures. Corporate clients and organisations also regularly use the firm for advice on power purchase agreements, as demonstrated by the team's work for Vail Resorts. The bulk of the practice is based in Los Angeles, where practice head Elizabeth Sluder has built up a strong reputation. Julia Balas is also active in this area representing a range of renewables developers.

Practice head(s):

Elizabeth Sluder

Other key lawyers:

Key clients

EDF Renewables

Vail Resorts

Apex Clean Energy

M&A/corporate and commercial > Private equity buyouts Tier 5

Morrison & Foerster LLP advises funds on lifecycle investments, from strategic investments, to full leveraged buyouts, to exits, as well as advising portfolio companies. The firm's international reach allows it to represent funds involved in multiple industries, with clients ranging from established industry funds to newer private equity teams. Key partners in the team include Dario Avram, Patrick Huard, and Eric McCrath in San Francisco.

Tax > International tax Tier 5

Morrison & Foerster LLP's tax group has experience of domestic and cross-border M&A and business structuring. Contacts include Bernie Pistillo, an experienced tax partner in the San Francisco office, and David Strong, who divides his time between Denver and New York.

Tax > US taxes: contentious Tier 5

Morrison & Foerster LLP represents clients before the IRS and numerous state tax authorities in audits and appeals. Leveraging the firm's strong reputation in DC, the team has also advocated before the Treasury Department to influence the regulatory process. The firm was also among the first large US law firms to form a dedicated SALT practice. Of counsel Edward Froelich leads the firm's federal tax controversy group in Washington DC and has extensive experience representing clients in audits and federal tax litigation of all kinds. Anthony Carbone and David Strong in New York are contacts in the wider tax group. Mitchell NewmarkCraig Fields and Nicole Johnson left the firm for Blank Rome LLP.

Practice head(s):

Anthony Carbone; David Strong

Other key lawyers:

Testimonials

They have an awareness of their high-end position in legal field and delivering on it; a sense of mission and sensitivity as regards clients’ needs and crises; high expertise and well-established competitive position; they have a well-deserved and earned respect of the other firms and peers.’

The SALT partners and professionals provide the highest quality of service and understanding to the issues we have.’

The SALT attorneys and partners I deal with provide a level of understanding necessary to deal with issues I raise with them. I find the advice I solicit and receive is value-adding and timely to service our needs.’

The fact that many of the attorneys have previous experience working in the state tax administration gives them a good understanding of the procedures and strategies likely to be used by the revenue department. The fact they have experience working cases in several states provides a strong litigation background.’

Key clients

ADP Vehicle Registration

Agilent Technologies

Daimler Investments US Corp.

Dex Media

Kohl’s Department Stores

Lorillard Tobacco Company

Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company

Staples

US Bank National Association

Vodafone Americas

Intellectual property > Patents: litigation (International Trade Commission)

Dispute resolution > Product liability, mass tort and class action - defense: automotive/transport

With approximately 1,000 lawyers in 16 offices, Morrison & Foerster is a preeminent global law firm dedicated to delivering business-oriented results to clients across the United States, Europe and Asia. Dynamic technology and life science companies, large financial institutions, leading consumer product companies and other market leaders come to MoFo for knowledge, innovation and business aptitude. MoFo handles some of the world’s largest cross-border transactions and resolves major disputes across multiple jurisdictions. The firm has a long-standing commitment to pro bono work and social justice.

Main areas of practice
Business restructuring and insolvency: MoFo is counsel to debtors, creditors’ committees, secured lenders, and other participants in the distressed markets in large, complex matters. The firm is a market leader in creditors’ committee representation, cross-border insolvencies, distressed real estate, the restructuring of financial institutions, insolvencies involving key intellectual property, and hedge fund failures.

Capital markets:The firm is a leading firm for issuer and underwriter representations for IPOs, offerings of debt, hybrid, preferred and structured securities, private placements, PIPEs, 144A/Reg S offerings, continuous issuance programs, including MTN, CP and covered bond programs. MoFo is a pioneer in developing synthetic products, hybrid securities, structured products and derivatives.

Finance: MoFo has one of the most experienced finance practices in the US Our finance attorneys maintain an impressive borrower-side client roster, working extensively for private equity funds and private companies in acquisitions and refinancings, while also offering extensive experience in acting for certain lenders and credit funds. In addition, MoFo assists clients in all aspects of project finance and development around the world with a focus on energy, alternative energy, and renewable resources. The group has also become very well known in the Blockchain, Cryptocurrencies and Smart Contracts space.

Intellectual property: MoFo is a global IP powerhouse, developing novel solutions for protecting and enforcing some of the most prized IP in the world. MoFo is called upon to represent clients in their most high-profile and complex patent, copyright, trademark, trade dress, trade secrets, and licensing matters.

Investigations:The team has experience handling internal and government investigations on six continents and in more than 65 countries, bringing significant cross-border experience to compliance and enforcement matters worldwide. MoFo provides advice on the many US and foreign laws regulating international business transactions including the FCPA, the U.K. Bribery Act, Sarbanes-Oxley, federal securities laws, the whistleblower provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act, international trade, export control and sanctions laws, and AML/BSA. The firm have successfully represented many clients in obtaining favorable settlements or other resolutions—often ending with the DOJ or other government enforcement bodies closing their investigations with no action taken.

Litigation:The firm’s litigators are renowned for their success in high-stakes, complex cases—representing clients in all stages of federal and state litigation, from grand jury to trial through to appeal. MoFo drive strategy to position our clients for the best possible outcome, whether that is winning at trial or resolving a matter quickly. The team includes top trial and appellate lawyers, as well as leading practitioners in securities, financial services, consumer and false advertising, product liability, environmental, and employment litigation as well as white-collar criminal defense, antitrust and unfair competition, and international arbitration. MoFo is a destination firm for class actions, no matter the subject area, and understand the shortest path to win and resolve cases.

Mergers and acquisitions: MoFo has a leading global M&A practice. The depth and breadth of the practice, including a strong focus on cross-border transactions, reflects the dynamic nature of clients, which include Fortune 500 companies, private equity sponsors, investment banks, and privately held companies.

Privacy and data security: MoFo’s market-leading privacy and data security group is a destination for clients—from startups to sophisticated global clients alike—seeking advice on every aspect of privacy laws and regulations, as well as incident preparedness and response. The team helps companies fit compliance with evolving data protection laws within the context of a truly global, consistent strategy, and have also served as lead counsel and coordinated all components of clients’ responses to some of the highest-profile data breaches of recent years.

Real estate: MoFo is a recognized leader across a broad spectrum of real estate activities, including development deals, acquisitions and dispositions, leases, market standard and complex financings, and restructurings. Its clients include lenders, developers, equity investors, and REITs.

Tax: MoFo’s tax practice enjoys a global reputation for innovative tax planning and the successful resolution of important tax controversies. The group advises on state and local tax, federal tax, compensation, benefits and ERISA, and trusts, estates and nonprofit organizations.

Number of Partners : 316
Number of Other Lawyers : 738
Chair : Larren M Nashelsky
Managing Partners : Paul Friedman
Managing Partners : Craig Martin
Managing Partners : Eric Piesner
Managing Partners : Tessa Schwartz
International Offices : Beijing
International Offices : Berlin
International Offices : Brussels
International Offices : Hong Kong
International Offices : London
International Offices : Shanghai
International Offices : Singapore
International Offices : Tokyo

Our Diversity Mission

Diversity has long been a core value of Morrison & Foerster. More than 20 years ago, we formally implemented our diversity mission statement, which continues to define the firm’s cultural values today. We understand that fostering an environment of inclusion enables us to offer a wide range of perspectives to provide exemplary services to our clients.

As we state in our mission statement — We at Morrison & Foerster will continue our work to break down barriers to equal opportunity, to value fully the differences among people in our organization while recognizing our similarities, and to create an atmosphere in which each individual can develop his or her potential to the fullest extent possible — the firm believes that diversity among its lawyers and staff serves its overall institutional values, which emphasize excellence in client service, collegiality, respect for everyone, professional and business ethics, and duty to the profession and the community.

Spotlight: Diversity Strategy Committee

At Morrison & Foerster we believe bringing diverse experiences to our work strengthens the quality of the service that we provide to our clients, the legal profession, and our communities. We are committed to creating an environment that promotes and celebrates diversity and inclusion.

Formed in 2003, MoFo’s Diversity Strategy Committee (DSC) supports a variety of internal diversity initiatives, programs, and groups designed to recruit, train, mentor, and retain diverse lawyers and staff.

The DSC is comprised of senior and mid-level partners, including the firm’s chair, and a firmwide managing partner, as well as the director of diversity and inclusion and director of attorney development.

Read more

Spotlight: Women’s Strategy Committee

Morrison & Foerster has long championed the advancement of women within the legal profession, providing our clients with the best legal talent. Creating an inclusive culture that supports the growth and development of talented women lawyers is at the heart of our shared values and commitment. When our women succeed, we succeed as a firm.

Founded in 2006, MoFo’s Women’s Strategy Committee (WSC) works closely with firm leaders — including the firm’s chair, firmwide managing partners, executive committee, and board of directors — to ensure that the advancement of women is a constant strategic priority.

Twenty-six partners, counsel, of counsel, and associates serve on the WSC, along with seven members of our senior staff.

Read more

Diversity Leadership Q&A

Image

Larren Nashelsky
Chair of Morrison & Foerster LLP

What is the ethos behind the firm’s approach to diversity?

At Morrison & Foerster, diversity is fundamental to who we are as a firm. We’re a mix of individuals from various ethnic, cultural, and racial backgrounds united in a belief that our shared diversity makes a difference in serving the interests of our clients, our profession, and our communities. That’s why we continuously work to attract, develop, and retain talented lawyers with diverse backgrounds. Ultimately, our goal is to create an environment in which our lawyers can see and recognize MoFo as a firm where they can professionally grow, advance, and make a meaningful difference.

What has a more diverse and inclusive workplace brought to your firm, and also to your clients?

We believe that diversity adds value to our organization by attracting the most talented people possible. By creating an inclusive environment that makes the best use of the talents of those who work here, we enhance our ability to serve our clients. By bringing diverse experiences to our work, we are not only able to provide more innovative solutions to the complex issues our clients present, but the quality of our work product and decision making is strengthened. Diversity is critical to our ability to effectively serve our clients, the legal profession, and our communities.

How do you encourage a more diverse and inclusive workplace?

The firm communicates and encourages the importance of diversity and inclusion in a variety of ways including through internal training and workshops, firmwide executive communications from the chair and managing partners, a D+I newsletter, digital and social media, and the firm’s intranet. We also include questions related to diversity and inclusion in our partner evaluation process.

In 2017, the firm became one of only 44 firms to participate in the Mansfield Certification Pilot and committed to ensuring at least 30 percent of our talent pools for leadership positions, promotions and lateral hiring are diverse. In that same year, the firm created a department dedicated to diversity and inclusion to oversee the firm’s diversity efforts and ensure diversity and inclusion is top of mind.

We also hold a series of biannual town halls to discuss diversity and inclusion in each of our domestic offices and in Asia. During these meetings we not only solicit and receive associate feedback but also disseminate information about and encourage attorneys to actively support the firm’s diversity and inclusion efforts.

What is needed to help bring more diverse candidates into the legal profession?

A true commitment to increasing diversity, open communication, a willingness to learn, and the will to practice inclusiveness every day.

What are your policies for recruitment, and what are the major challenges?

In 2013, the firm created what is now known as the Wetmore Fellowship, which allows us to interview and hire the most talented diverse first-year law students as summer associates. We also remain committed to participating in diverse talent pipeline development programs like the SEO Scholars program, 1L LCLD Scholars, Law Preview, and Legal Outreach.

The firm has two Partner Recruiting Committees focused on identifying and supporting diverse and women lateral partner candidates through the interview/hiring process.

Retention of diverse staff is a critical issue – what are the programs your firm has in place that you feel will help retain your staff?

The firm invests in actively promoting and supporting sponsorship of diverse and women associates and provides unconscious bias training on an ongoing basis. It has created two Associate Advisory and Engagement Committees on diversity and women’s affairs to ensure open, honest, and consistent dialogue among associates and between associates and partners.

Firmwide, we have 29 affinity groups that give voice to lawyers of color, women lawyers, LGBTQ+ lawyers, working parents, and veterans. The firm holds local, regional, and firmwide diversity workshops, training, and events which firm leaders attend and participate in, and reiterate the importance of diversity.

A Longstanding Core Value: Firmwide Initiatives and Programs

Mentoring Programs

Investing in the next generation of diverse leaders is a key priority at MoFo. Our Diversity Mentoring Program supports the development of under-represented minority associates by matching them with partners who mentor the attorneys through their associate years.

Read more

Sponsorship Program

Senior lawyers across the firm — including women and men — readily acknowledge their indebtedness to the mentorship and guidance they received early in their careers and are committed to paying back that debt by sponsoring senior women associates for partnership.

Read more

Fostering a Culture of Inclusion

We are constantly looking to improve and build on the training and programs we offer our lawyers. As a firm, we provide opportunities for our diverse lawyers to talk candidly about issues they are facing and how we can address them.

Read more

Affinity Groups

Our affinity group programs for lawyers of color, women lawyers, and LGBTQ+ lawyers create a sense of community. Launched in 2008, the programs have expanded to include more than two dozen affinity groups.

Read more

Recruiting Initiatives

Founded in 2011, our Keith Wetmore 1L Fellowship for Excellence, Diversity, and Inclusion awards fellowships to promising first-year law students who are members of historically under-represented groups in the legal profession.

Read more

For More Information

For more information on our diversity-related programs and initiatives, visit here.

For more information on our MoFo women-related programs and initiatives, visit here.

Stay up to date on our firmwide diversity events and activities by subscribing to our MoFo+ blog here.

Awards and Accolades

We are honored to be recognized for our commitment to diversity in our firm, in our communities, and the legal profession.

  • The American Lawyer has ranked MoFo a top 15 firm on its Diversity Scorecard for 17 years in a row. MoFo was among the top 10 law firms in 2017.
  • In 2018, MoFo was named to Yale Law Women’s inaugural list of Top 10 Female Friendly Firms.
  • Vault 100 ranked MoFo among the top 15 firms for LGBT diversity, the top 25 firms for minorities, and the top 20 firms for women.
  • Named Law Firm of the Year for Flexible Working Environments and Innovative Programs for Mothers at the 2017 Chambers Women in Law Awards
  • For 15 consecutive years, the Human Rights Campaign Corporate Equality Index has given MoFo a 100 percent perfect rating in its annual report on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender equality in corporate America.
  • 2017 marks the ninth year MoFo has been named to Working Mother’s list of the Top 50 Firms for Women.
  • For seven consecutive years, MoFo has received Gold Standard Certification from the Women in Law Empowerment Forum in recognition of the integration of women into the firm’s top leadership.

Diversity Stats

Firm has a written diversity strategy that has been communicated to all Firm attorneys. Firm gives billable credit for work that is directly related to diversity efforts (but is not pro bono work). Firm ties a component of partner compensation to diversity efforts. Firm has a diversity committee that includes senior partners and that reports to the Firm’s highest governing body. Firm has a full or part-time diversity professional who performs diversity-related tasks. Firm has affinity or employee resource groups for its women and diverse attorneys, which meet at least quarterly. Firm has a succession plan that specifically emphasizes greater inclusion of women and diverse lawyers. Firm mandates and monitors that minority and women attorneys have equal access to clients, quality work assignments, committee appointments, marketing efforts and Firm events. Firm requires inclusion of at least one diverse candidate in all hiring decisions. Firm policy specifically prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. Firm provides opportunity for attorneys to voluntarily disclose their sexual orientation or gender identity and expression through Firm data collection procedures. Firm policy specifically provides for paid maternity leave.  Firm policy specifically provides for paid paternity leave.  Firm has a formal, written part-time policy that permits partners to be part-time.  Firm has a flex-time policy. Firm provides for or mandates diversity training for all lawyers and staff. Firm has a supplier diversity program.
T T T T T T T T T T T T T