Seyfarth Shaw LLP > San Francisco, > Firm Profile

Seyfarth Shaw LLP
SUITE 3100
SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94105-2930

United States > Real estate > Construction (including construction litigation) Tier 1

Seyfarth Shaw LLP is routinely engaged in domestic and multijurisdictional development and critical infrastructure projects, and represents contractors, designers, investors and public and private developers across a breadth of sectors. Alison Ashford oversees the New York office’s construction practice and is often engaged in the structuring of infrastructure and development projects. Located in San Francisco, Micheal McKeeman co-leads the team and oversees disputes for subcontractors, owners and prime contractors on private and public construction projects. Based in Washington DC, Bennett Greenberg has negotiated and drafted contracts pertaining to significant projects including P-3. Senior associate Michael Wagner is also based in Washington DC and has experience on the full spectrum of construction projects including preconstruction, contract negotiation and project conception. Seattle's Meghan Douris assists clients in mandates concerning the construction of high-rise buildings and heavy civil infrastructures.

Practice head(s):

Alison Ashford; Michael McKeeman

Other key lawyers:

Bennett Greenberg; Michael Wagner; Meghan Douris; Jason Smith; Ryan Gilcrest


‘Seyfarth Shaw LLP has a very deep team with extensive construction knowledge as well as experts in related fields such as government contracting and business organization.’

‘The team I work with includes very capable people with government contracting, legal research and writing, trial presentation and construction practices experience. It is a great combination of talent.’

‘The team has taken time to get to know us and learn how important our success is to our entire community. They are passionate about our case and have mastered new subject matter in a way that is extraordinary.’

‘Seyfarth’s team is collegial, intelligent, direct and adaptable. They are timely, responsive and business-like. Most in our small shop have a very god working relationship with the people we work with regularly.’

‘Jason Smith has provided excellent support to us on a contentious matter which has been drawn out and difficult. He is very responsive, considered and makes himself available with a challenging time zone difference. His strategic insights are invaluable and has been instrumental in putting us in a very strong position.’

‘The team at Seyfarth Shaw LLP is extremely knowledgeable in construction law. Ryan Gilcrest is one you can count on for his expertise. I would definitely recommend this law firm.’

‘Ryan Gilcrest knows the laws and how to articulate them to the other parties. He stood out for us in our most recent pre-litigation and was able to turn it around before having to proceed down the formal route.’

‘Meghan Douris is exceptional. She has a great understanding of construction and is well connected and organized. Her ability to quickly grasp our scope as well as our needs provides us with great service.’

Key clients

Municipality of Anchorage

PGP Development LLC

Hampton Roads Transportation Accountability Commission

Watts Constructors, LLC

International Monetary Fund

Transbay Joint Powers Authority (TJPA)

Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield (URW)

Panther Residential Management, LLC

The Hall Group

Terramar Retail Centers

Vance Brown, Inc.

Ventana Property Services, Inc.

LBA Realty

RMC Constructors, Inc.

Square Peg Construction, LLC

Level-It Installations Group

Redpath USA Corporation

Work highlights

  • Represented the Municipality of Anchorage with the court first issuing an opinion that the United States had breached its contract with Anchorage, and then two months later entering judgment against the United States and awarding the client $367.4 million.
  • Represented the Transbay Joint Powers Authority on all construction-related matters pertaining to the development of a $4.5 billion transit center in the heart of San Francisco.
  • Acted as special counsel to the Hampton Roads Transportation Accountability Commission (HRTAC), a regional transportation financing agency in Virginia.

United States > Labor and employment > ERISA litigation

With a ‘strong blend of legal and practical advice during the litigation process’, Seyfarth Shaw LLP’s ERISA practice has a broad range of experience, with specific expertise in multi-employer plans and trustees, and works closely with the firm’s employee benefits litigation group as well as compliance experts in the wider employee benefits department. The practice is led by Ian Morrison and Kathleen Cahill Slaught, based in Chicago and San Francisco respectively. Morrison focuses on retirement and welfare plan matters and frequently litigates cases on behalf of clients facing 401(k) class actions. Slaught is an experienced litigator and has handled several cases relating to the health care sector and its related plans. Sam Schwartz-Fenwick, in Chicago, is a key name to note in relation to employment and employee benefit plans surrounding the LGBTQ+ community, including transgender insurance benefit coverage and has experience defending claims of employee-benefits discrimination in this area. Also in Chicago is Ada Dolph who defends plan sponsors, fiduciaries and insurers in 401(k, stock drop and retiree medical class actions with particular focus on the retail, manufacturing and aviation sectors.

Practice head(s):

Kathleen Cahill Slaught; Ian Morrison

Other key lawyers:


‘Strong blend of legal and practical advice during the litigation process to ensure that the client can undertake proper risk assessment without unnecessary spending.’

‘Ian Morrison is very strong presenting to clients, insurers, and other interested parties to make sure key information is conveyed succinctly and effectively.

‘Sam Schwartz-Fenwick is a tireless advocate who provides behind-the-scenes advices that keeps matters running effectively.’

United States > Labor and employment > Labor and employment disputes (including collective actions)

The ‘very efficient and effective’ team at Seyfarth Shaw LLP continues to be highly regarded for its experience in defeating class certification and for its successes in wage and hour cases. The team, headed by large-scale class actions and multi-plaintiff cases expert Laura Maechtlen in San Francisco, is able to draw on its national team to work on cases across the country, and is experienced in a variety of industries including healthcare, hospitality, energy, and retail. Camille Olson, valued by clients for her ‘incredible experience’ as a complex litigator, is based in Chicago and is a co-chair of the firm’s national complex litigation practice group. Also in Chicago is Noah Finkel, who has a particular specialism in representing clients in collective or class action matters, as well as advising and litigating on class action waivers in arbitration agreements. Sacramento-based Coby Turner is a key contact for compliance counseling. Gerald Maatman, Jr. left the firm in September 2022. Gary Friedman arrived from Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP in February 2024.

Practice head(s):

Laura Maechtlen

Other key lawyers:

Ray Baldwin; Chrissie Constantino; Lynn Kappelman; Ariel Cudkowicz; Camille Olson; Robert Stevens; Ben Briggs; Annette Idalski; Linda Schoonmaker; Noah Finkel; Coby Turner; Gary Friedman


‘I worked with Ray Baldwin and Chrissie Constantino. Under Ray’s leadership, they were a very efficient and effective team in responding to a Fair Labor Standards Act class action complaint.’

‘Lynn Kappelman & Ariel Cudkowicz – great partners and collaborators who are super responsive and help me find the best solution to thorny problems. Emily Miller – super associate who takes great care and attention to detail to managing our matters.’

‘Camille Olson is the best attorney I have ever worked with. I appreciate her incredible experience, but I also value her wisdom and the common sense advice she provides when I ask.’

‘Bob Stevens – amazing relationship manager who learns our business and is able to provide thoughtful counsel that matches our business goals.’

‘I thoroughly trust Ben Briggs, my primary contact. Then when I have an issue in any part of the country, Ben often brings on someone with expertise in actually talking to the people on the other side of the matter that are just as trustworthy and capable. The team listens to my goals in each, individual matter and go after them from what I really think is a place developed from my point of view. All this while Ben maintains contact and continues to learn about and support my overall strategy for the types of matters we work on across the country.’

‘Team leader Annette Idalski is a very experienced and serious litigator and advocates hard for her clients. She is always professional, and knows the law.’

‘The tight attention to and capability around ensuring subject matter expertise and practical guidance, with both legal and project management capabilities designed to both advise, but also assist with practical solutions, whether investigations, audits, training, or litigation support.’

‘Linda Schoonmaker knows our business, is very efficient, and seeks practical resolutions of disputes.’

Key clients

Allstate Insurance Company


Delta Airlines

Nike, Inc.

Prudential Insurance Company of America


UnitedHealth Group Incorporated

US Foods, Inc.

The Walgreen Company

Wells Fargo Bank

Work highlights

  • Successfully defeated a motion for preliminary injunction brought by eight named plaintiffs on behalf of approximately 230 employees, challenging the denial of their exemptions from a health care system’s vaccine mandate.  
  • Successfully represented an international hotel company in a wage and hour lawsuit involving the issue of whether or not the client was required to immediately pay accrued vacation and paid time off wages to its employees when they were furloughed at the outset of the COVID 19 pandemic.
  • Obtained a landmark ruling from the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court on behalf of a broker of door-to-door sales services that established the standard for joint employment in Massachusetts.

United States > Dispute resolution > E-discovery

Seyfarth Shaw LLP‘s large team of dedicated, full-time e-discovery attorneys places key emphasis on technical expertise, with a reputation for remaining at the forefront of technological and legal developments. The department has particular strength in discovery issues related to labor litigation, and works closely alongside the firm’s market-leading employment practice. National chair Scott Carlson and deputy chair Jay Carle co-lead the group from Chicago. Carlson, who is the founder of the department, has particularly strong technical expertise, due to his prior experience as a software engineer, while Carle previously spent over a decade consulting in technology systems administration and security. Also in Chicago are Jason Priebe, who advises corporate clients on e-discovery preparedness, planning, and execution, and senior counsel Jaime Raba, a litigator with a history of working as a systems analyst and administrator. Kathleen McConnell, in San Francisco, is the lead name for data analytics in litigation.

Practice head(s):

Scott Carlson; Jay Carle

Work highlights

United States > Tax > Not-for-profit (nonprofit and tax exempt organizations)

Seyfarth Shaw LLP is noted by clients for its expertise in assisting tax exempt organizations such as higher education and healthcare sector clients, with practice heads Douglas Mancino and Ofer Lion practicing almost exclusively in this area alongside several key associates, including Dustin Lauermann, whose practice is focused on tax-exempt organizations, trusts and estates, and tax credits. Arnold Brown, who joined the group in San Francisco from Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt in May 2022, is ‘super responsive, friendly, comprehensive and educative’. The team represents nonprofit organizations but also represents individuals such as officers, directors, and contributors to tax-exempt organizations, offering expertise across commercial and tax-exempt bond financing, real estate, commercial and employment litigation issues. Unless otherwise mentioned, all named practitioners are based in Los Angeles.

Practice head(s):

Douglas Mancino; Ofer Lion

Other key lawyers:

Arnold Brown; Dustin Lauermann; Christian Canas; Lisa Schaures


‘Good expertise. Easy to deal with. Fast responses.’

‘Arnold Brown is super responsive. Friendly, comprehensive and educative. He is super sharp and has expertise on relevant matters.’

United States > Government > Government contracts

The ‘energetic and creative’ government contracts team at Seyfarth Shaw LLP is highly regarded for offering ‘any federal contractor a “one-stop shop” for all their needs.’ The group is noted for its strong litigation practice, with a proven track record in bid protests, cost accounting disputes and False Claims Act cases. The practice was boosted in July 2022 with the arrival of former K&L Gates practitioners and Washington DC-based Amy Hoang, counsel Erica Bakies and associate Sarah Burgart, bringing a wealth of experience in bid protests and internal investigations. Hoang, who is well regarded as ‘very hands on and knowledgeable’, co-leads the department with Donald Featherstun in San Francisco and Seattle-based Adam Lasky, whose practice covers bid protests, international procurement matters and SBA regulatory compliance. Another key name is contract claims and bid protest expert Edward Arnold in Washington DC.

Practice head(s):

Donald Featherstun; Adam Lasky; Amy Hoang

Other key lawyers:


‘I have personal experience working with several of the group’s partners, including Edward “Teddie” Arnold, Ashley Sherwood, and Adam Lasky. All of whom are capable, thoughtful and practical attorneys. I also am familiar with Amy Hoang, who like the others is an emerging leader in the field and I regard her highly.’

‘Amy Hoang is a very hands on and knowledgeable partner. She has the unique talent of simplifying complex government contracts concepts. She is very personable and meets all deadlines without exception. Her professionalism is second to none.’

‘Adam Lasky is the most knowledgeable government contracts attorney we have worked with in the industry. Adam consistently delivers solid legal advice, whether it is a bid protest, SBA issue, or government compliance concern. He is also quick to respond to client emails and phone calls.’

‘The government contracts team at Seyfarth has an excellent understanding not only of government contracts law and litigation, but also the manner in which the DOJ handles the litigation.’

‘Amy Haung, Erica Bakies and the rest of the team are simply top notch. What makes them different is the way they approach issues in a practical way and truly listen to my business needs and goals.’

‘Amy Hoang and Sarah Burgart are outstanding attorneys who not only possess subject matter expertise in government contracting generally, but specifically are a tremendous resource in pursuing bid protests. They provide timely and effective business-oriented advice and work seamlessly with inside corporate counsel.’

‘I value the swift responsiveness and candid dialogue I receive from Amy Hoang and Sarah Burgart. Both are masters of their craft when it comes to bid protests. In every instance they have achieved the desired results, and in each matter their predictions have been entirely accurate.’

‘I have been working very closely with Adam Lasky for several years on different cases. Adam makes himself available at all times, whether it’s a late night call or weekend. He provides detailed advice and outlines various courses of action. Always very detailed oriented and challenges ‘normal’ thinking.  He does not simply assumes but always questions and provides reasoning behind his thought process. Definitely would recommend his team to others.’

Key clients


J&J Worldwide Services

Vectrus Systems Corporation

Municipality of Anchorage

Textron Systems Corporation

ManTech International Corporation


Bell Helicopter

American Roll-on Roll-off Carrier Group

IMEG Corp.

Work highlights

  • Successfully represented the Municipality of Anchorage at the US Court of Federal Claims, with the court holding that the United States had breached its contract with Anchorage.
  • Acted for Raytheon Technologies on several government contracts engagements.
  • Successfully represented a contractor in a bid protest at the US Court of Federal Claims challenging the US Navy’s award of a $88.5m 8(a) set-aside base operations contract.

Seyfarth Shaw LLP is a full-service international law firm, serving Fortune 1000, Global 500 and other companies worldwide through more than 900 attorneys and dedicated professional staff (including certified project managers, legal technologists, practice managers and other paraprofessionals). Seyfarth has been widely recognized for its leadership in designing innovative, client-focused solutions for the delivery of high quality legal services.

  • Earned “Law Firm of the Year” in Litigation – ERISA in the US News – Best Lawyers® 2022 edition of ‘Best Law Firms’. As well as, 15 Tier 1 national rankings in the areas of commercial litigation, construction law, employee benefits (ERISA) law, employment law – management, franchise law, health care law, immigration law, labor law – management, litigation – antitrust, litigation – construction, litigation – ERISA, litigation – intellectual property, litigation – labor and employment, patent law and real estate law.
  • Recognized by The Financial Times among the world’s most innovative law firms for the eleventh consecutive year in its annual FT Innovative Lawyers series.
  • Named a 2022 “Trailblazer” for Legal Technology by the National Law Journal. The firm was recognized for its new advanced immigration management platform, Caribou.
  • BTI Consulting named Seyfarth ‘Most Recommended Law Firms’ in 2021. Seyfarth Shaw was named one of 21 law firms recommended by general counsel. These recommendations directly reflect the longstanding dedication to exceptional client service and innovative solutions, which continue to set the firm apart.
  • Earned a perfect score of 100 in the annual Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Corporate Equality Index and was named a ‘Best Place to Work for LGBTQ Equality’ for the 14th consecutive year.
  • Achieved Gold Standard Certification from the Women In Law Empowerment Forum (WILEF) for 2021. Seyfarth was among only 29 US law firms to earn this distinction in 2021.
  • Largest US labor and employment practice in a full-service firm, with over 400 attorneys exclusively engaged in labor and employment law in the United States.
  • Recognized by Law360 as ‘Practice Group of the Year’ in employment law for ten years.
  • Specialist international employment law practice with experience covering more than 160 countries, including matters on which we have advised on up to 150 countries at one time, acting for some of the world’s largest multinational companies.
  • One of the largest real estate practices in the United States with more than 150 attorneys.
  • One of the largest employee benefits and executive compensation practices in the US, serving clients across 30+ industries.
  • 165+ business litigators across a global platform, offering a full-service litigation practice.
  • Proactive litigation strategies in the rapidly changing legal services landscape.
  • Handled more than 200 corporate M&A transactions across a diverse range of industries over the past two years.

Main areas of practice

  • ADA title III and public access
  • Antitrust and competition
  • Appellate
  • Bankruptcy and restructuring
  • Capital markets
  • Class and collective actions
  • Commercial contracts and outsourcing transactions
  • Commercial finance
  • Commercial litigation
  • Construction
  • Construction and development projects
  • Construction claims and disputes
  • Consumer financial services litigation
  • Corporate counseling and governance
  • eDiscovery and information governance
  • Employee benefits
  •  Employment
  • Employment litigation
  • ESG, corporate citizenship and human rights
  • Executive and equity compensation
  • Financial products and technology
  • Financial services
  • Franchise and distribution
  • Government contracts
  • Government contracts litigation
  • Government relations and policy
  • Health care, life sciences and pharmaceuticals
  • Hospitality and leisure
  • Immigration
  • Infrastructure and project finance
  • International dispute resolution
  • Institutional investors
  • Intellectual property counseling and prosecution
  •  Intellectual property litigation
  • International employment law
  • Labor management relations
  • Manufacturing
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Post-pandemic recovery and renewal
  • Privacy and cybersecurity
  • Product liability and complex tort
  • Real estate
  • Real estate finance
  • Real estate litigation
  • REITs and real estate capital markets
  • Remote workforce
  • Retail, wholesale and distribution
  • Securities and fiduciary duty litigation
  • Tax
  • Tax controversies and litigation
  • Technology, mobility and connectivity
  • Trade secrets and non-competes
  • Transportation and logistics
  • Trials
  • Trusts and estates
  • Trusts and estates litigation
  • White-collar defense and investigations
  • Workplace arbitration and ADR
  • Workplace safety and environmental

International experience: Seyfarth Shaw’s international service model is custom-built to deliver an integrated, cross-border legal and commercial solution. Seyfarth’s model relies exclusively upon cohesive partner-led teams of highly experienced international attorneys who focus solely on helping multinational clients deal with their international business issues, regardless of location. Central to the firm’s international department is Seyfarth’s award-winning, specialist international employment practice, which is acknowledged as one of the world’s leading practices in the area. Our team also offers multidisciplinary corporate, commercial, and real estate advice to multinational clients with needs across the globe.

Photo Name Position Profile
Brian Ashe photo Mr Brian Ashe Brian Ashe is a partner representing employers in all aspects of labor…
Jonathan Braunstein photo Mr Jonathan Braunstein Mr. Braunstein is a Partner in the firm’s Litigation Department, and a…
Kathleen Cahill Slaught photo Ms Kathleen Cahill Slaught Partner, Seyfarth Shaw LLP; lead trial attorney for class action and single-plaintiff…
Robin Freeman  photo Robin Freeman Partner
Kerry Friedrichs photo Ms Kerry Friedrichs Kerry Friedrichs is a partner in the firm’s Wage and Hour Litigation…
Nick Geannacopulos photo Mr Nick Geannacopulos Nick Geannacopulos is the Managing Partner of the San Francisco office and…
Joshua Henderson photo Mr Joshua Henderson Joshua Henderson represents management in various industries in a broad range of…
Laura Maechtlen photo Ms Laura Maechtlen Laura Maechtlen is the Chair of Seyfarth Shaw’s Labor and Employment Department.…
Michael McKeeman photo Mr Michael McKeeman Mr. McKeeman is a partner in Seyfarth Shaw LLP’s San Francisco office.…
Jennifer Mora photo Ms Jennifer Mora Senior Counsel, Seyfarth Shaw LLP
S. Bradley Perkins photo S. Bradley Perkins
Partners : 426
Other lawyers : 505
Professional staff : 1,280