Firm Profile > Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz > New York, United States

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
NEW YORK, NY 10019
United States

Dispute resolution > M&A litigation: defense Tier 1

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz in New York is undoubted among the leading firms in M&A litigation, with market sources noting that is has a long history in this area and is frequently involved in the most complex cases. Working closely with its highly-rated transactional M&A practice, which counts many  Fortune 500 companies among its clients, the firm's litigators are involved in numerous cases arising from public company deals. Known for trendsetting cases in takeover, transactional and corporate governance litigation, notably Corwin v. KKR Financial which introduced a game‐changing stockholder merger ratification defense, the firm has led the charge against appraisal arbitrage litigation. The practice is led by William Savitt, who is regarded as one of the market's most skilled and experienced practitioners, and Jonathan Moses. Theodore Mirvis, Marc Wolinsky and emerging talent Ryan McLeod are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

William Savitt; Jonathan Moses


The firm has been in this business for a very long time and in complex cases. It is able to put a case together quickly.

The firm has a strong corporate M&A team, which works closely with litigation partners during the transaction negotiation phase.

‘It is a respected operation and is one of the firms that is seen the most in this area of litigation.

Ryan McLeod may be the best lawyer on your list.

Key clients

Bank of America

Cardinal Health, Inc.


Goldman, Sachs & Co.

Itaú CorpBanca

JPMorgan Chase Bank

Kainos Capital

Match Group

Morgan Stanley

PNC Financial Services Group

Labor and employment > Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: transactional Tier 1

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz’s New York office fields some of the premier names in employee benefits and executive compensation on the market, including Jeannemarie O’Brien, Adam Shapiro and Andrea Wahlquist. The team supports a market-leading corporate practice on high-value M&A transactions, spin-offs, IPOs and bankruptcies for public companies and private equity funds.

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

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz has a strong reputation in big-ticket transactions at the top of the market. Many of the firm's partners are highly-regarded nationally and internationally, with Martin LiptonAdam EmmerichEdward HerlihyDaniel NeffSteven Rosenblum and David Katz, all rated for their work and thought leadership in the field of M&A. The firm has a one-office model based out of New York.

Dispute resolution > Securities litigation: defense Tier 2

'It has a small practice but it is a leading firm is securities litigation,' says one source about Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz in New York, which climbs the ranking this year. The firm frequently represents Fortune 500 companies, leading financial institutions and multinational corporations, as well as their senior executives and directors, in a wide range of complex and high‐profile matters including regulatory enforcement and white-collar criminal matters, related civil proceedings arising from such governmental investigations and a broad variety of securities litigation. It has a solid track record in class action and individual claims under federal securities laws, and it has recently secured important victories for clients in securities fraud class actions as well as IPO‐related cases. Jonathan Moses and William Savitt lead the practice, in which John SavareseStephen DiPrima, Elaine GolinCarrie Reilly and Ryan McLeod are also recommended.

Practice head(s):

Jonathan Moses; William Savitt


It has a small practice but it is a leading firm is securities litigation.’

Key clients

Arconic Inc.

CBS Corporation



Goldman Sachs

Lions Gate Entertainment Corp.

Match Group

U.S. Bank N.A.

United Technologies

734 Investors

Tax > US taxes: non-contentious Tier 2

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz's tax practice supports the firm's market-leading corporate and M&A work. Jodi Schwartz is recognized for her experience of the tax issues arising from cross-border M&A, joint ventures, spin-offs and financial instruments, while Deborah Paul has handled the tax aspects of M&A and private equity buyouts in the telecoms, energy and oil and gas, food, and defense sectors.

Finance > Restructuring (including bankruptcy): corporate Tier 3

Richard Mason chairs the restructuring and finance department for Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz in New York, which represents creditors, acquirers, and equity holders in Chapter 11 cases and out-of-court restructurings. The firm also has experience in cross-border restructurings, including Chapter 15 cases.

Practice head(s):

Richard Mason

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

Chaired by the highly experienced Robin Panovka in New York, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz supports its clients in restructuring matters, corporate governance, REIT-related M&A and strategic joint ventures.

Dispute resolution > General commercial disputes Tier 4

From a single office in New York, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz regularly garners praise for its expertise in litigation relating to mergers and acquisitions, corporate governance and restructuring. Key lawyers at the firm are department co-chairs and widely respected trial attorneys William Savitt, who specializes in M&A and corporate governance disputes, and Jonathan Moses, whose practice includes securities litigation and international arbitration.

Practice head(s):

William Savitt; Jonathan Moses

Antitrust > Merger control Tier 5

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz operates its merger and acquisitions antitrust practice from New York. Damian DiddenNelson FittsIlene Gotts and Joseph Larson are the key names to note in this area of competition law.

Dispute resolution > Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense Tier 5

The white-collar team at New York-based Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz is part of the litigation department. It has a strong reputation for representing multinational corporations, financial institutions and their executives in regulatory enforcement proceedings and white-collar criminal investigations, as well as in court. John Savarese is a name to note, with expertise in accounting fraud, insider trading and criminal tax. Other key practitioners include Wayne Carlin and David Anders.

Other key lawyers:

John Savarese; David Anders; Wayne Carlin; Ralph Levene; Paul Vizcarrondo

Labor and employment > Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: design

Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz enjoys a global reputation as one of the world’s leading business law firms. The firm regularly handles many of the largest, most complex and demanding transactions, investigations and litigations in the US and around the world. Wachtell Lipton has contributed to major evolutions in corporate law in order to advance the interests of its clients. Wachtell Lipton originated the ‘poison pill’, structured the first cross-border ‘Morris Trust’ transaction between SmithKline Beckman and Beecham, and has been involved in – and litigated – transactions giving rise to most of the landmark takeover and corporate governance decisions in Delaware. Wachtell Lipton approaches its clients’ legal issues within the larger framework of each client’s strategic, business and financial goals. The firm focuses on matters that require the attention, extensive experience, expertise and reputation of its partners. The firm does not handle routine matters, limits the number and type of matters it undertakes, and operates with a ratio of partners to associates far higher than its major competitors.

Main areas of practice
Corporate: Wachtell Lipton counsels both public and private acquirers and targets, advising on a wide range of corporate matters, including: US, cross-border and international mergers and acquisitions; private equity and strategic investments; spin-offs, split-ups, securities offerings and other capital raising transactions; and is recognized for its leadership in takeover defense, shareholder activism and corporate governance.

Litigation: Wachtell Lipton’s litigation practice is consistently at the cutting edge of the leading commercial and corporate litigation battles dominating headlines. The firm makes appearances in state and federal courts throughout the country at both trial and appellate levels, as well as in arbitrations and mediations. It also has a leading practice representing companies and individuals in state and federal regulatory and criminal investigations. The firm’s litigators advise on a range of corporate governance matters and handle derivative demands and other litigation challenging the actions of boards of directors. The firm consistently handles some of the nation’s leading commercial disputes covering diverse industries and subject matters. The firm has a leading white-collar and regulatory enforcement practice. It has represented major financial institutions and multinational corporations, as well as their boards of directors and senior executives, in a range of complex and high-profile white-collar criminal and regulatory enforcement matters nationally and internationally.

Restructuring and finance: Wachtell Lipton has one of the leading restructuring practices, principally representing creditors in national and multinational bankruptcy cases and out-of-court restructurings. Attorneys in the restructuring and finance group regularly handle the financing of complicated acquisitions or divestitures of businesses in financial distress or bankruptcy, highly leveraged transactions and other major transactions involving significant debtor/creditor issues.

Antitrust: Wachtell Lipton’s leading antitrust practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions and government investigations, including international antitrust and banking antitrust issues.

Tax: Wachtell Lipton has a leading tax practice advising clients on tax aspects of corporate reorganisations, acquisitions, spin-offs and other dispositions, financings, restructurings and joint ventures.

Real estate M&A: Wachtell Lipton has a leading real estate M&A practice focusing on mergers and acquisitions, private equity, corporate governance, restructurings and joint ventures across the REIT, real estate, hospitality and gaming sectors. The firm consistently plays an active role in major transactions in these sectors, with an emphasis on large-scale public company M&A and strategic transactions.

Executive compensation and benefits: Wachtell Lipton has a leading executive compensation and benefits practice addressing the most sensitive issues facing public and private companies, both in the deal and non-deal contexts.

Department Name Email Telephone
Restructuring and finance
Executive compensation and benefits
Real estate M&A
Number of Partners : 82
Number of Lawyers : 257
Co-Chairmen of the Executive Committee : Edward D Herlihy
Co-Chairmen of the Executive Committee : Daniel A Neff