Firm Profile > DLA Piper LLP (US) > Houston, United States
DLA Piper LLP (US) Offices
1000 LOUISIANNA STREET
HOUSTON, TX 77002-5005
DLA Piper LLP (US) > The Legal 500 Rankings
DLA Piper LLP (US) is instructed primarily by clients in the technology and software industries, which it advises on a range of commercial transactions including tech licensing, trade mark agreements and outsourcing deals. Rated by clients for his ‘clearly superior and absolutely outstanding work’, Jeffrey Aronson in Silicon Valley advised Softbank Group Corporation on its investment in the on-demand dog walking service Wag and the messaging app Slack. In addition, the team acted for Nike in relation to its acquisition of artificial intelligence company Invertex. Other key figures include joint practice heads Mark Lehberg in Sand Diego and Richard Greenstein in Atlanta. The firm also saw a number of personnel changes in 2018: Washington DC-based Margo Tank and Chicago-based David Whitaker joined the practice group from Buckley LLP, and Matthew Gruenberg joined the Los Angeles office from Barnes & Thornburg LLP; Ryan T. Sulkin left the firm for Michael, Best & Friedrich LLP.
DLA Piper LLP (US) assists clients with compliance in relation to transnational, federal and state privacy and security regulations, industry best practices and self-regulatory initiatives. Based in Washington DC, practice head Jim Halpert has been advising the State Privacy and Security Coalition on stopping a number of bills which reintroduced at the state level asymmetrical ISP-only privacy rules from the FCC, repealed by Congress in March 2018. Miami-based Carol Umhoefer has been assisting Pfizer with all aspects of its GDPR compliance program, while Atlanta-based Saxby Chambliss has been working with the US Chamber of Commerce on a report on the importance of reducing barriers to transnational sharing of cybersecurity threat information. San Francisco’s Rena Mears, who is well versed in privacy and cybersecurity assessments, program and control design, data mapping and program and vendor-risk management, is another key contact. Margo Tank joined the Washington DC office from Buckley LLP in January 2018, and Andrew Serwin, ‘a person of rare skills', joined the San Diego office from Morrison & Foerster LLP in 2019.
Land use/zoning Tier 1
‘Best in class from strategy to legal analysis’, DLA Piper LLP (US) is instructed by real estate developers, investors, technology companies and professional sports teams. In northern Virginia, the team was strengthened by the arrival of Antonio Calabrese from Cooley LLP; he provides ongoing advice to Macerich on the development of Tysons Corner Metro Station, and is also advising Mitre on a 1 million square foot expansion of its campus. In Chicago, chair of the land use, development and government relations practice Theodore Novak, along with Paul Shadle (‘very responsive and helpful in complex real estate matters’), and Mariah DiGrino advised Farpoint Development on multiple land use, zoning and development matters, including GRIT, a vacant 90-acre site owned by the City of Chicago awaiting the development of a high-end mixed-use project, as well as the rehabilitation and renovation of the historic Uptown Theatre, to be re-opened as a 5,800-capacity entertainment venue. Moreover, Novak, DiGrino and Richard Klawiter, vice-chair of the real estate practice, advised 601W Companies on the $500m renovation and rehabilitation of the 2.5 million square foot Old Main Chicago Post Office. Names to note in Los Angeles include Jerold Neuman, Kyndra Joy Casper, and senior associate Andrew Brady, and John Rattigan acts as managing partner of the Boston office.
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s 'responsive and communicative practice' fields lawyers with sector expertise in a range of industries, including technology, life sciences, healthcare and real estate; the practice is also experienced in deals involving franchising and distribution, insurance, manufacturing, and business and financial services. It acts in a variety of complex transactions, including stock-for-stock mergers, management buyouts, tender offers, proxy contests, cross-border acquisitions, and divisional purchases and sales; the team also advises special committees of boards on contests for control, including hostile bids and proxy contests, and assists with diligence and structuring issues, including tax, antitrust and IP. Active key clients include Sodexo, Grand Canyon Education, Rolls-Royce Power Systems and ASB Capital Management. New York-based US M&A chair Jonathan Klein assisted Sodexo, a Paris-based global food services and facilities management company, with its acquisition of Centerplate, a US-based sports and entertainment venue hospitality provider; Phoenix's US education sector chair David Lewis led advice to Grand Canyon Education on its sale of Grand Canyon University (GCU) to a nonprofit entity, which led to GCU becoming one of the largest nonprofit universities in the country; Chicago partner Andrew Weil acted for Rolls-Royce Power Systems in the sale of its Germany-based fuel injector business, L'Orange, to US-based Woodward; and co-global private equity chair and co-US corporate group chair Joseph Alexander Jr, who divides his time between Dallas, Atlanta, Miami and New York, advised ASB Capital Management, one of the largest institutional investment management firms in the Washington DC area, on the sale of Infomart Data Centers' Dallas operations to Equinix, which included the Infomart Dallas building. Other key advisers include US corporate co-chair John Gilluly, who divides his time between Houston, Austin and Dallas, San Diego office managing partner Jeff Baglio, and co-chair of the Northern California corporate and finance practice Eric Wang, who is based in both Silicon Valley and San Francisco. Recent growth for the Austin corporate practice saw the firm hire a team of six former Jackson Walker, L.L.P. partners, who advise institutional investors on investments and secondary transactions; Steven Bartz, who is experienced in fund formation, private equity, joint ventures and strategic alliances, joined the Dallas office from Thompson & Knight LLP; and Kevin Grant, who acts for strategic and financial buyers and sellers in both US domestic and cross-border M&A, and Emilio Ragosa were recruited in New Jersey from Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP, where Ragosa led the corporate group in the Princeton office. Also of note, Thomas Gaynor and Jinjian Huang joined the San Francisco office in 2019.
Outsourcing Tier 1
DLA Piper LLP (US) handles outsourcing arrangements in the software, insurance and media sectors and also assists governmental and public institutions with optimizing administrative operations. San Diego-based Gregory A. Manter advised Catalina Marketing Corporation on the outsourcing of its application development and maintenance services to Mindtree over a term of five years. The firm also advises the national police force of a Middle Eastern country in technological outsourcing negotiations. Other key individuals include Los Angeles-based practice head Vincent Sanchez, New Jersey-based associate Joanna Sykes-Saavedra and of counsel Anne Friedman, who also practices from the Los Angeles office. New York-based Praseeda Singh Nambiar joined as counsel in August 2018 from a consulting company.
Patents: licensing Tier 1
DLA Piper LLP (US) delivers 'first class service' and offers 'a one-stop shop for all legal needs', thanks to the 'impressive scope of its US and international practice'. The group fields a strong transactional practice, but also excels in commercial licencing agreements and litigation settlements. Technology-related mandates account for the majority of recent highlight matters, but the group was also active for life sciences, automotive, retail and energy clients. Clients include Qualcomm, the University of Texas at Austin and Revolution Contraceptive. Practice head Mark Lehberg in San Diego, 'exceptional IP attorney' Jeffrey Aronson and Victoria Lee in Silicon Valley, and Philadelphia's Darius Gambino form the heart of the practice. Silicon Valley's Tzung-Bor Wei made partner. Michael McGurk left to found McGurk Group LLC. John Garvey joined Noria Therapeutics and Shane Albright joined Goodwin.
Product liability, mass tort and class actions: pharmaceuticals and medical devices - defense Tier 1
DLA Piper LLP (US) is headed by Raymond Williams in Philadelphia and Christopher Young in San Diego, and is one of the leading firms for high-profile product liability litigation and mass torts in the medical and pharmaceuticals sectors. Notable highlights include representing Medtronic and Covidien as co-national counsel in the hernia mesh litigation, and defending Pfizer and Wyeth Pharmaceuticals in product liability litigation, in which plaintiffs claim that long-term use of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) cause various forms of kidney disease. In other work, the highly regarded Loren Brown in New York is acting for Pfizer alongside Boston-based Matthew Holian in an MDL involving claims that anti-coagulant medication Eliquis causes bleeding. Cara Edwards in New York is also recommended. In January 2018, the team welcomed Stephen Matthews and Amy Rubenstein from Porzio, Bromberg & Newman and Schiff Hardin LLP respectively; in February 2018, Matt Nickel and Mike Moore joined from Dentons.
Real estate Tier 1
‘Very commercial in its approach, with a unique understanding of the real estate business’, DLA Piper LLP (US) handles the full range of real estate matters, including permitting, development, capital markets and joint venture transactions. Other areas of expertise include mixed-use development projects, cross-border transactions, acquisitions and sales, financing on the lender and borrower side, sports development projects, leasing, construction and design, and corporate matters. Clients include private and public companies, institutional investors, sovereign wealth funds, developers, lenders and government entities. Boston-based US real estate chair John Sullivan, who is ‘smart and commercial, and a great person to deal with’, recently advised Cottonwood Management on its $900m development of Echelon Seaport. Atlanta-based Maxine Hicks acted for Texas Rangers Baseball Express on advising, drafting and negotiating the documents for a $1bn mixed-use project, which includes the team’s new ballpark in Arlington, Texas. The firm continues to act as national real estate counsel for Blackstone on the acquisition, sale and financing of hotels across the country. Another key highlight included advising the Walt Disney Company on the real estate aspects of its acquisition of 21st Century Fox. Other clients include Uber, Prudential Real Estate Investors, InterContinental Hotels Group, Greystar Capital Partners and AIG Global Real Estate. Also recommended are Washington DC-based Jay Epstien, who co-chairs the global real estate sector, and Boston-based Cara Nelson. Chris Smith joined from Shearman & Sterling LLP; Antonio Calabrese joined from Cooley LLP, Scott Kapp joined from Dentons; and Bruce Saber joined from Arnold & Porter; they are based in New York, North Virginia, Chicago and New York respectively. Frederick Klein in Washington DC and Michael Hamilton in Los Angeles are also recommended.
Attorneys named in this section are based in Washington DC unless otherwise indicated. DLA Piper LLP (US) has a strong track record of advising clients in cross-border matters and is recommended for its 'business-oriented approach', 'broad industry expertise', and the 'remarkable team of experts' it fields. CFIUS and Team Telecom specialist John Beahn handled national security issues for T-Mobile in its merger with Sprint, working alongside security specialist Sarah Kahn. Beahn was a new arrival to the practice from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP in 2018. Practice co-heads Nancy Victory and Michael Senkowski also act for T-Mobile - and controlling shareholder Deutsche Telekom - in the regulatory aspects of its proposed merger with Sprint. Victory is lauded by clients for her 'high-quality strategic guidance', while 'stellar regulatory lawyer' Senkowski is also highly recommended. Wireless regulatory specialists Edward Smith and Eric DeSilva, who are 'stronger individuals in their own right than practice group leaders at other firms', according to one client, advise trade association CTIA, which represents all major wireless carriers, on the emergence of new technologies, particularly 5G and Internet of Things. New client Viziv Technologies has been a significant source of work for the firm, which has advised the wireless power company on obtaining regulatory approvals for the testing of its products. Other key names at the practice include associates Dana Zelman and Peter Shroyer, both of whom assist Beahn in his role as lead regulatory counsel to 21st Century Fox in connection with its merger with Disney.
Fintech Tier 2
New York-based David Luce heads DLA Piper LLP (US)’s multidisciplinary fintech and blockchain practice which has expertise handling regulatory, corporate, securities, M&A, capital markets and intellectual property matters. Its impressive client roster ranges from providers of financial infrastructure software, payment solutions, alternative lending platforms and analytics companies to venture capital and those in the insurtech space. The group's broad capabilities include acting for technology companies in financing transactions, such as recently assisting Kabbage with its $525m asset-backed securitization transaction and advising Doc.ai Incorporated, a developer of decentralized conversational AI technology, on its SAFT offering. Other recent work includes assisting sponsors and investors in the cryptocurrency space and advising the firm's broad client base on regulatory issues. The team’s expertise in acting for emerging companies was bolstered by the arrival of Margo Tank in Washington DC and David Whitaker in Chicago from Buckley LLP.
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s patent litigation team is 'an amazing group of exceptionally talented and hardworking lawyers.' The 'great, dedicated and responsive' team has experience across the gamut of patent litigation, including matters in the district courts and the Federal Circuit, the PTAB and the ITC. Following the merger with Liner LLP on the West Coast in autumn 2017, the practice further bolstered its life sciences offering on the East Coast with the arrival of Michael Dougherty and Tony Pezzano in New York, both of whom joined from Hogan Lovells US LLP. Technology-related instructions remain a core focus for the group, with a major recent highlight including practice head Mark Fowler successfully defending Toshiba against Intellectual Ventures, averting infringement claims for ten patents covering semiconductor memory chips and consumer electronics. Clients also include Samsung Electronics, Nike and BASF. Other names to note are 'outstanding strategist' John Guaragna in Austin, the 'awesome' Steven Park in Atlanta, San Diego quartet Sean Cunningham, Erin Gibson, Richard Mulloy and Stan Panikowski, Stuart Pollack in New York, Carrie Williamson in Silicon Valley, Boston's Larissa Bifano and Michael Strapp, and Paul Steadman and Matthew Satchwell in Chicago. Clayton Thompson and Jake Zolotorev joined in Silicon Valley from Feinberg Day LLP and Tamany Vinson Bentz joined the Los Angeles office from Venable LLP. Additionally, Eric Hagen arrived from McDermott Will & Emery LLP. Patrick Park, also in Los Angeles, was promoted to of counsel, while former of counsel Vincent Crowley joined TiVo and John Garvey joined Noria Therapeutics. Lawrence McClure and Gerald Sekimura retired. Todd Paterson also left the firm.
The 'amazing group of litigators' at DLA Piper LLP (US) are 'responsive, prepared, easy to work with and down-to-earth' and impress with 'an excellent work product and top-notch service and communication'. Sean Cunningham, who 'deserves exceptional mention for his commitment to the client', defended ResMed against a patent infringement complaint filed by Fisher & Paykel regarding five patents for sleep apnea masks, the second of two investigations filed against ResMed by Fisher & Paykel. Techtronic Industries and Home Depot instructed the team to defend against a complaint filed by Walbro, which involved infringement allegations regarding five patents for outdoor equipment and power tools. Practice head Mark Fowler, who 'always provides the right strategic advice', and Chicago duo Paul Steadman and Matthew Satchwell are also noted.
DLA Piper LLP (US) advises on REIT formation, roll-up transactions, IPOs, secondary debt and equity offerings, acquisition and financing transactions, and M&A. The client list includes Black Creek Diversified Property Fund, CNL Healthcare Properties II, KBS Growth & Income REIT, Blackstone Real Estate Income Trust and W PCarey. Recent work includes acting for WP Carey, a publicly traded, net-lease REIT, on its merger agreement with Corporate Property Associates 17 - Global, a publicly held, non-traded REIT. Raleigh office managing partner Robert Bergdolt leads the advice on non-traded, publicly offered REITs and is 'a joy to work with, knows his stuff and has a very practical real-world approach to problem solving'. Robert LeDuc, who splits his time between Minneapolis and Chicago, is co-national REIT tax chair; also key to the group is Kerry Johnson of the New York and Chicago offices, Chicago's Jesse Criz and Greg Hayes, San Diego-based Darryl Steinhause, and Christopher Stambaugh and Carrie Hartley in Raleigh.
Technology transactions Tier 2
The ‘highly skilled, incredibly competent and professional’ practice group at DLA Piper LLP (US) is well known for its ‘extensive global connections’ and is rated by clients for its ‘quick turnaround on complicated projects’. Palo Alto-based Jeffrey Aronson (‘an exceptional and knowledgeable transactional attorney’) assisted Silicon Laboratories with its $282m acquisition of the semiconductors company Sigma Designs. Further, Washington DC-based Nancy Victory and Michael Senkowski acted for T-Mobile US and Deutsche Telekom in FCC negotiations regarding the announced merger between T-Mobile and Sprint Corporation. Silicon Valley-based global co-chair Victoria Lee is also recommended.
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s team is, according to one client, 'the strongest transactional practice in the telecom space', and is highlighted for its work in wireless transactions. Nancy Victory, who jointly leads the group, is praised by clients as a 'relentless, organized and smart' dealmaker, and recently advised Verizon on its multi-step reorganization. Fellow co-head Michael Senkowski is 'extremely knowledgeable and experienced', and forms a 'stupendous' team with Victory that 'instills confidence and trust '. Senkowski and Victory are acting for T-Mobile in its proposed acquisition of Sprint, in one of the largest telecom transactions in recent years. The 'tireless' Edward Smith, who focuses on wireless and satellite matters, is assisting on the T-Mobile deal, as well as handling joint venture work for OneWeb in cooperation with Senkowski and the firm's engineering team. John Beahn, a 2018 arrival from Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, recently advised GTT Communications on its $40m acquisition of Access Point along with Reston-based transaction specialist Thomas Hendershot. In addition, Beahn is serving as lead regulatory counsel to 21st Century Fox in its $71bn acquisition by Disney, serving as national security counsel toT-Mobile in its acquisition of Sprint, and advising the Pennsylvania Broadband Investment Initiative Program on its investment in third-party broadband infrastructure deployment. The team is lauded for its 'strong bench', which includes wireless expert Eric DeSilva and associates Dana Zelman and Peter Shroyer. Lawyers are based in Washington DC unless otherwise indicated.
DLA Piper LLP (US) ‘approaches everything from a business perspective’ and ‘excels in client service’. Ann Ford, valued for the quality of her ‘counsel and business acumen’, coordinates all trademark and other IP-related issues on behalf of CFA Institute. Frank Ryan delivers ‘outstanding guidance’ and heads the group with San Francisco-based Gina Durham and Ford. High-profile clients include Nike, Al Jaazera, ESPN and also Dr Seuss Enterprises, which Ryan Compton advises on prosecution, licensing and enforcement issues. Keith Medansky is a key figure in the Chicago office. Other partners are based in Washington DC unless stated otherwise.
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s bicoastal practice has established a reputation in the venture capital space. Corporate venture matters forms the backbone of the team's workload, however the group also has an excellent reputation for advising on life sciences and tech matters. Highlights included advising SoftBank Vision Fund on its $300m Series D financing of Wag!, a Los Angeles-based startup providing mobile dog care services. Jeffrey Lehrer, based in Northern Virginia, and Silicon Valley’s Louis Lehot ('a master networker') share leadership of the practice group, which also includes Curtis Mo and Mark Radcliffe, both in Silicon Valley; Andrew Gilbert and Emilio Ragosa, who are based in New Jersey; and San Diego partner Randy Socol. Also recommended in San Diego is Richard Bull, who is instructed by emerging companies, venture capital firms and other strategic investors.
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s advertising capabilities were strengthened by the arrivals of new practice heads Benjamin Mulcahy and Gina Reif Ilardi from Jenner & Block LLP, based in Los Angeles and New York respectively. The team is predominantly known for brand-side representation and recently acted for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles in several matters including a multi-platform advertising initiative with the Apple Music and Beats Electronics, a joint promotion arrangement with Universal Pictures relating to the release of the motion picture Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom and an online and mobile teaser campaign featuring Vin Diesel leading up to the public launch of the Dodge Challenger SRT Demon. It also assisted social gaming platform Twitch Interactive with various sponsorship, strategy and eSports team initiatives. On agency-side the firm advised United Entertainment Group on agreements with Capitol Records, Spotify and emerging artist Maggie Rogers to create a smart-phone application to launch a new North Face product.
DLA Piper LLP (US) is frequently engaged by owners and developers in complex transactional and contentious construction matters. The team is spread across a number of the firm's multiple US offices, with practice co-chairs Robert Crewdson and Anthony Meagher in Atlanta and Baltimore respectively. Crewdson was recently enlisted by new client Brandywine Realty Trust to defend against delay claims brought by the construction manager and structural engineer. The claims concern a forty-story mixed-use development project in Philadelphia, and culminated in a huge success for the client. Meagher was the key name in successfully acting for Buzzi Unicem in complex arbitration proceedings centering on the client's $300m cement plant. The firm also has a strong track record in stadium projects, and has recently worked alongside the Milan office on the new AS Roma stadium, with costs totaling over $2bn. Atlanta partner Brian Fielden led on this matter, supported by a team including Virginia partner Mark Whitaker and New York partner Richard Rubano. Similarly, Fielden has been assisting Nashville Holdings with negotiating design and construction agreements for the construction of a $250m stadium in Nashville, currently under construction.
Healthcare: life sciences Tier 3
Co-heads of DLA Piper LLP (US)'s practice, San Diego-based Lisa Haile and Matthew Holian in Boston, specialize in patentability and licensing strategies, and product liability and mass tort, respectively. Recent highlights include obtaining issuance of multiple patents for Aegis Therapeutics’ key product areas and assisting Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) with multidistrict and state court litigation concerning alleged defects of the clients’ blockbuster anticoagulant medication Eliquis. New York-based litigator Loren Brown has been acting for Medtronic and Covidien in product liability litigation related to complications allegedly caused by some of Covidien’s implantable hernia mesh products. San Diego’s Larry Nishnick and Austin’s Aaron Fountain are names to note for corporate investment and patent litigation respectively.
The healthcare team at DLA Piper LLP (US) is 'strong in regulatory compliance and all kinds of transactional work', while also offering dispute resolution and data privacy advice. Miami-based practice lead Joshua Kaye, who delivers 'exceptional service, quality of work and attention to detail', assisted Somos Innovation on the establishment of a Medicaid-focused, value-based care system in New York together with Evolent, while well-regarded Philadelphia litigator Brian Benjet advised BioMatrix Specialty Pharmacy and its affiliates on a fraud claim from Highmark under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. Austin partner Karen Nelson - who has 'deep experience and a practical approach' - successfully represented a hospital and health system in its attempt to prove non-compliance of external auditors with the procedural requirements during the client's audit investigation. Tom Califano, who is based in New York, specialises in representing healthcare companies in Chapter 11 proceedings.
The 'deeply knowledgeable and business-conscious' New York insurance department at DLA Piper LLP (US) is 'one of the few practice groups that can provide outstanding legal advice with legitimate courtroom skills'. It focuses on claims relating to securities, asbestos, environmental issues, product liability, D&O, fraud, tort and transaction liability, as well as international disputes in the London and Hong Kong markets. Aidan McCormack advised Brit Insurance on a $64m professional liability insurance coverage and bad faith claim against Lloyd's and London Market insurers regarding an underlying legal malpractice claim. International business litigator Michael Murphy serves as global chair for insurance and reinsurance. Clients also recommend the 'unflappable and incredibly creative' Joseph Finnerty III, who counts Beazley among his clients, and 'consistently high performer' Megan Shea. The firm's New York office was also boosted by the relocation of global insurance sector co-chair PK Paran from London in early 2019.
Insurance: non-contentious Tier 3
The cross-disciplinary practice at DLA Piper LLP (US) stands out for its experience in insurtech, venture capital and intellectual property matters, while also advising on M&A, corporate reorganizations, risk management, product development and regulation. Key New York partner David Luce's recent highlights include a role for GC Securities - a division of MMC Securities - on the first pure wildfire exposed catastrophe bond, as well as advising Fannie Mae on the first transaction in a pilot program to use enterprise paid mortgage insurance in place of policies on individual mortgage loans. Other notable individuals include David Mendelsohn and Stephen Schwab in Chicago, and Kathleen Birrane in the Baltimore office.
International tax Tier 3
Boston-based Michael Hardgrove is a key name at DLA Piper LLP (US), advising on tax planning for multinational companies. He is currently advising Insmed, a Nasdaq-listed pharmaceutical company, on reforming its tax structure. In other highlights, the team assisted Marsh & McLennan with integrating $2.5bn of acquisitions located in over 25 jurisdictions; this work was handled out of New York by Philip Rogers, Maruti Narayan and Frank Mugabi. San Francisco’s Sibel Owji and Silicon Valley’s Sang Kim lead the team.
Labor-management relations Tier 3
DLA Piper LLP (US) has experience assisting clients with managing a unionized work force as well as with helping maintaining non-union status. It also has a dedicated strategic campaign team, which advises companies on how to respond effectively to corporate campaigns by labor unions and their allies. Brian Kaplan in New York is the US chair and global co-chair of the group. Ryan Vann, who joined the Chicago office from Baker McKenzie LLP in July 2018, is well versed in a variety of labor matters. Washington DC-based Harriet Lipkin is another name to note. In March 2018, Michael Sheehan left the firm for McDermott Will & Emery LLP, closely followed by a team including Ron Holland, Pankit Doshi, Marilyn Pearson, Ellen Bronchetti, and David Durham.
Led by Christopher Campbell in Atlanta, DLA Piper LLP (US) assists clients from the automotive industry with product liability litigation and class actions. Notably, Phoenix-based Mark Nadeau is defending Uber Technologies in a personal injury case regarding a homeless person who was struck by an autonomous vehicle. In addition, William Kiniry in Philadelphia is representing Porsche in litigation relating to the Cayenne Sport Utility engine, which contained an emissions control device designed to fool the designated emissions testing. In another highlight, the team is acting for Mazda in a consumer protection lawsuit filed by the New Mexico Attorney General’s Office regarding faulty airbags supplied by vendor Takata. Other clients include Michelin and Goodyear.
The product liability and mass torts practice at DLA Piper LLP (US) is headed by Christopher Campbell and specializes in chemical exposure litigation. The team is defending e-cigarettes manufacturer NJOY in a civil action alleging that vaping products require Proposition 65 warnings. Further, Matthew Holian in Boston and Baltimore-based John Wellschlager are acting as national counsel for BASF Catalyst in talc powder and asbestos litigation related to its predecessor Engelhard. The firm’s client base also includes Porsche, Northrop Grumman and AM General.
DLA Piper LLP (US) has 'great lawyers who are very strong communicators and have excellent drafting skills'. John Clarke in New York 'consistently provides excellent service and is very responsive to client needs'. Clarke co-chairs the corporate and securities litigation practice with James Mathias in Baltimore. San Diego-based Shirli Fabbri Weiss secured the dismissal of class certification in In re Finisar Corp Sec. Litig., which related to the impact of analyst reports on stock prices. On the SEC enforcement side, the firm has specialists in offices across the US, including Deborah Meshulam in Washington DC and John Hillebrecht in New York. Hillebrecht also led major cases, including three related securities and shareholder class actions in state and federal court for food company Hain Celestial Group, all arising from allegations of a fraudulent channel stuffing scheme. Caryn Schechtman obtained summary judgment on SEC claims against Yorkville Advisors, which alleged fraudulent misrepresentation of the value of hedge fund investments.
DLA Piper LLP (US) has experience in a range of structured products and securitizable asset classes, though the team is perhaps best known for its CLO practice, which is among the country's top ten arranger-side teams in terms of deal volume. Richard Reilly, who heads the CLO practice, acted for Goldman Sachs in roughly $18bn of CLO new issues, reissues and resets in 2018. In addition, Reilly also maintains an active manager-side practice, having advised Ares Management on approximately $6bn of CLO deals in a 12-month span from October 2017. A key figure in the ABS group is Boston-based Andrew Sroka, who has experience in fintech ABS, and recently advised Laurel Road Prime Student Loan Trust, as issuer, and Laurel Road Bank, as sponsor, on multiple student loan ABS offerings. Further, New York's Peter White acted for Goldman Sachs in relation to the securitization of certain naming rights agreements for the NFL Hall of Fame Village. Christopher Giordano also has experience of student loan ABS, and David Luce is a key contact in the structured products practice.
US taxes: contentious Tier 3
DLA Piper LLP (US) provides clients with the full range of assistance in tax controversy matters, acting in tax disputes at the federal, state and local levels. The firm increasingly acts in matters surrounding the validity of regulations post the 2017 tax reform and represents the targets or potential targets of whistleblower claims. Practice heads Sang Kim in San Francisco and the 'knowledgeable' Ellis Reemer in New York are the key names. The 'extremely talented' Diana Erbsen in New York is recommended.
Capital markets: debt Tier 4
DLA Piper LLP (US)’ issuer-focused debt practice had a strong showing in the real estate sector over the past year. Notable highlights included New York-based Christopher Giordano advising global REIT WP Carey on a €500m notes offering on the Irish Stock Exchange. In addition, Phoenix-based David Lewis assisted STORE Capital with its $350m senior notes offering. Other significant areas of experience include TMT, cross-border offerings and energy and natural resources. The group also handles underwriter-side work. Finance chair Jamie Knox, who recently advised US Steel on a $650m notes offering, and capital markets chair Christopher Paci are key contacts in New York office.
The ‘experienced and practical’ group at DLA Piper LLP (US) impresses with its ‘efficient execution on complex transactions’. The firm’s expansive domestic and international network is also a recurring theme and one source comments, ‘as one of the largest firms, it can use its scale to ramp up quickly on sophisticated matters’. Global corporate co-chair John Gilluly, who splits his time between Austin, Dallas and Houston, is ‘incredibly knowledgeable, available and committed’ and advised SolarWinds on its IPO. In another issuer-side headline, Phoenix-based Gregory Hall assisted Mesa Air Group with its $115.6m IPO. The group also benefits from the senior experience of finance chair Jamie Knox, who is ‘experienced, smart and always available’, and US capital markets head Christopher Paci, both of whom are based in New York.
Cartel Tier 4
Lesli Esposito sits in DLA Piper LLP (US)'s Philadelphia's office and was recently appointed by Mid-Atlantic Dental as third-party witness in the FTC's investigation and action against the three largest dental care providers. In San Francisco, Lisa Tenorio-Kutzkey acts as global antitrust department head and recently obtained a favorable judgment for an individual pursued by the DOJ on the grounds of big-rigging in the real estate foreclosure market in the Bay Area during the residential housing crisis. Robby Robertson recently arrived in the Chicago office from Hogan Lovells US LLP and is also a key name to note alongside Philadelphia's John Huh.
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s antitrust team 'is thoroughly committed to its clients and shows great effort to learn to improve its services'. AMN Healthcare recently engaged a team led by practice co-head David Bamberger (Philadelphia) to defend it against a claim brought by a competitor alleging violations of the Sherman Act, and Edward Scheiderman (Washington DC) is part of the team acting for McCormick & Company in a consolidated group of lawsuits brought by a competitor and a number of putative consumer classes alleging the client's change of packaging is in breach of several antitrust and consumer protection laws. John Hamill, who successfully dismissed a state court class action filed against NorthShore University Health System, was recently joined in the Chicago office by Robby Robertson, who arrived from Hogan Lovells US LLP. Lesli Esposito splits her time between Washington DC and Philadelphia and heads the practice alongside Bamberger.
Commercial lending Tier 4
DLA Piper LLP (US) has a broad-based US finance practice that is 'extremely fast and responsive' and is considered 'an incredible asset' by its clients. On the West Coast, the practice led by San Diego's 'extremely intelligent and diversely experienced' Matt Schwartz, who is 'very knowledgeable about the venture debt market' and regularly advises on loans to funds and companies in the tech and biotech spheres. Recent examples include advising JPMorgan Chase on a $50m facility to the telematics company CalAmp. Other key clients include Silicon Valley Bank, which the team advised on a co-lending arrangement with Oxford Finance in relation to the provision of a $155m loan facility to Puma Biotechnology. Jamie Knox leads the East Coast team, which is primarily instructed by borrowers.
The team at DLA Piper LLP (US) is able to draw on the firm's global network to handle government investigations and enforcement matters involving multiple jurisdictions. In 2018, the Dallas office was joined by Jason Hopkins and Jason Lewis from Greenberg Traurig LLP, Joel Athey joined in Los Angeles from Holland & Knight LLP, Jeffrey Tsai joined in San Francisco from Alston & Bird LLP and the Chicago office welcomed Matt Hiller from the DOJ. Highlights for Washington DC's John Rah included assisting Pfizer with the negotiation of a Corporate Integrity Agreement with the DOJ to resolve allegations that donations the client made to independent charity patient assistant programs were improper. In another standout matter, New York's Karl Buch represented the Audit Committee of Cognizant Technology Solutions, successfully convincing the DOJ to decline charges following an investigation into potential FCPA violations; in a parallel case, he secured a settlement with the SEC in administrative proceedings. Gail Rodgers is engaged by GlaxoSmithKline on a number of government and internal investigations. The team is chaired by Jonathan King in Chicago and John Hillebrecht in New York; Jessica Masella in New York is also a name to note.
The team at DLA Piper LLP (US) handles the full range of benefits, compensation and ERISA issues arising from IPOs, ESOPs and M&A transactions. Palo Alto-based Cisco Palao-Ricketts focuses on equity compensation matters, including golden parachute arrangements for household names in the technology and life sciences sector. In addition, Washington DC-based Rita Patel regularly provides ERISA Title 1 advice in relation to transactions for publicly listed companies and private equity funds, and Richard Ashley is the name to note in Chicago. Clients include Axogen, Marriott International, New York University and Verizon.
DLA Piper LLP (US) has an 'outstanding practice across the board', and is known to cover the full range of labor and employment disputes for clients from the financial services, advertising, fashion, and healthcare sectors, among others. Brian Kaplan heads the department and is considered an 'extraordinary lawyer'. He was part of a team that successfully defended New York University in multiple lawsuits and charges in excess of $50m against a former adjunct instructor relating to alleged discrimination. Joseph Piesco represents Fox in several disputes, each alleging race discrimination. Piesco and Norman Leon also reached a favorable judgment for Domino's after employees of numerous franchisees tried to hold the client liable as a 'joint employer'. Counsel Garrett Kennedy, who is the 'perfect partner in challenging disputes', was also involved in both cases; Daniel Turinsky is noted. Aforementioned lawyers are based in New York. Other highlighted individuals are San Diego's Mary Dollarhide and Joseph Guarino in New Jersey. In Dallas, Marc Katz and Isabel Crosby, who joined from Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP in February 2018, are the key contacts. Evan Parness in New York made partner in April 2018. New arrivals to the team include Holly Lake in Los Angeles from Miller Law Group in September 2018 and Ryan Vann in Chicago from Baker McKenzie LLP. In March 2018, the Chicago-based former department head Michael Sheehan left the firm for McDermott Will & Emery LLP, and not long after, in April 2018, a team including Rachel Cowen, Ron Holland and Maria Rodriguez made the same move.
M&A litigation: defense Tier 4
DLA Piper LLP (US) has 15 lawyers handling M&A litigation including key partner John Reed in Wilmington, who has 20 years' experience in matters before the Delaware Court of Chancery and the Delaware Supreme Court. He recently handled In re Xura, Inc. Stockholder Litigation, in which he represented Mavenir, Inc, which was formerly known as Xura. The case challenged the price paid for Xura stock in its acquisition by Siris Capital Group in 2016. He also handled an appraisal case for Manti Holdings. James Mathias in Baltimore, who handled a case for Lasalle relating to its cancelled sale to Blackstone, is also recommended.
Private equity buyouts Tier 4
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s geographic coverage and commitment to the middle market has ensured a growing pipeline of deals, most notably in the Southeast of the country, where Joseph Silver and new global private equity co-chair Joe Alexander are located in Atlanta and Miami respectively. Key clients include ABRY Partners, ICV Partners, RLJ Equity Partners and Baird Capital Partners. It advised ABRY Partner on the sale of Datapipe to Rackspace Hosting and its controlling shareholder Apollo Global Management. Chicago's Robert Davis and Atlanta partner Gerry Williams are also highly rated. Former co-chair of the private equity department Steven Napolitano and the former co-managing partner of the Chicago office Brendan Head departed for Kirkland & Ellis LLP in 2018; Daniel Eisner, a former co-chair of the private equity department has also left the firm to launch OilCoin, a cryptocurrency based on oil reserves.
Product liability, mass tort and class actions: consumer products (including tobacco) - defense Tier 4
Led by Christopher Campbell in Atlanta, the team at DLA Piper LLP (US) comprises ‘very thoughtful litigators, who thoroughly examine the issues and provide in-depth and practical advice’. Leveraging its ‘international reach’ and experience in the food and beverage, technology and tobacco sectors, the practice group is regularly involved in class actions, personal injury lawsuits and false advertisement claims. Angela Agrusa, who joined the Los Angeles office in October 2017 from Liner, represented Danone in several false advertising class actions, including a claim regarding the term ‘organic’ used on certain milk products. Also recommended is George Gigounas, who defended e-cigarette and vaping product manufacturer NJOY in a civil action filed by the Center for Environmental Health seeking Prop 65 cancer warnings on the client's products. In 2018 Amy Rubenstein and John Scholnick joined from Schiff Hardin LLP, while Levi Heath joined from Barnes & Thornburg LLP. Alva Mather left the firm for McDermott Will & Emery LLP in October 2019.
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s trade secrets team was significantly strengthened by the addition of Eric Hagen, who joined from McDermott Will & Emery LLP. Recent mandates of his included acting for Seagate Technology, which was accused of misappropriating over 50 trade secrets relating to disk drive technology. Elsewhere, Rajiv Dharnidharka defended BuildingConnected in a trade secret misappropriation lawsuit brought by its competitor JB Knowledge Technologies. Litigator Paul Steadman is also highly recommended. All lawyers are based in California except Steadman who is based in Chicago.
Trademarks: litigation Tier 4
The team at DLA Piper LLP (US) ‘excels in client service’ and is noted for its ability to ‘coordinate trademark litigation matters across a diverse set of jurisdictions’. In San Francisco, co-head Gina Durham is representing the Estate of Marilyn Monroe in a trademark infringement and false endorsement litigation pending in the Southern District of New York. She is also currently acting for France-based video game maker Gameloft in a claim of copyright infringement filed by Glass Egg Digital Media concerning digital car models. Frank Ryan provides ‘outstanding guidance on trademark-related matters’. He is based in New York and heads the practice with Durham and Ann Ford, who operates from Washington DC.
US taxes: non-contentious Tier 4
DLA Piper LLP (US)’s ‘extremely knowledgeable’ tax group is able to draw upon its ‘strong relationships around the world’ to assist multinational corporations with transactional and operational needs, such as public mid-market M&A, post-merger integration, transfer pricing analysis and APAs as well as global tax structuring. New York partners Philip Rogers, Frank Mugabi and Maruti Narayan assisted with the post-acquisition integration following Moody’s Corporation's multi-jurisdictional $3.5bn acquisition of Bureau van Dijk. In another highlight, New York-based Drew Young and Jonathan Klein advised Hong Kong-based Far East Consortium International on the closing and post-closing structuring analysis following its take-private acquisition of Trans World Corporation. Transactional practice co-chair Stacy Paz in Silicon Valley and Chicago-based Andrew Weil advised Rolls Royce Power Systems on the $850m sale of L'Orange to Woodward Inc. Co-chair Gerald Rokoff in New York has ‘vast experience in implementing tax-efficient structures’. Afshin Beyzaee joined the Century City office following the merger with boutique Los Angeles practice, Liner. SeoJung Park in Silicon Valley was promoted to partner in April 2018.
The team at DLA Piper LLP (US) provides the full range of benefits services and has expertise in the design and implementation of qualified retirement plans, ERISA regulation, pension fund investments and welfare benefit plan implementation. Cisco Palao-Ricketts co-heads the practice from Silicon Valley, and has a particular focus on executive compensation in the life sciences and technology sectors. Richard Ashley and Rita Patel also co-head the practice from Chicago and Washington DC respectively; Patel regularly advises public companies on retirement and deferred compensation plans as well as implementing plan failure strategies under IRS and DOL correction programs, and Ashley regularly works with plan administrators on benefit plan compliance and testing issues. New York-based Adrienne Scerbak is a key contact for ERISA Title 1 mandates, and Mark Muedeking is a name to note in the Baltimore office.
DLA Piper LLP (US)'s practice is well known for handling sponsor-side fund mandates, however the investor-side practice was bolstered in 2018 by David Parrish and Nicole Brennig ('very commercial and responsive') joining the Austin office from Jackson Walker, L.L.P.. The firm's client base includes start-up venture capital firms, American and international sovereign wealth funds, endowments and pension plans. David Goldstein, Richard Reilly, Yasho Lahiri ('a superb negotiator and diligent in his work') and of counsel Carmen Wong are key names in New York. In 2018 Victor Levy moved to the New York office of Clifford Chance and Richard Ginsberg moved to Winston & Strawn LLP's Chicago office; however, in mid-2019 New York-based partner John Reiss joined from Shearman & Sterling LLP, and Adam Tope joined from Hogan Lovells US LLP.
The ‘effective and practical’ DLA Piper LLP (US) provides ‘solution-driven, consensus building and concise advice’, particularly in the healthcare, retail and manufacturing sectors. Chicago-based Richard Chesley jointly leads the practice alongside Tom Califano in New York, and they are supported by the ‘experienced, talented, attentive and creative’ John Lyons, who is ‘able to find imaginative solutions to complicated problems’. The team represented Appvion in its sale to the stalking horse bidder, led by Franklin Advisers, for $365m, in relation to the company’s Chapter 11 filings in the US Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware. The team is also representing 4 West Holdings, Orianna Investment and 133 affiliates, collectively, as joint owners of a healthcare business that owns and operates skilled nursing homes across seven states in Chapter 11 proceedings in the US Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas; the matter included a prepack followed by litigation. Other clients include Gordon Brothers Group, Black Diamond and CenterPoint Properties.
DLA Piper LLP (US) > Firm Profile
DLA Piper has established a substantial footprint in Latin America with varied offerings that cater to the specific needs of its global client base. The firm’s pan-hemispheric approach to delivering comprehensive services to its multinational clients underscores its view that Latin America is of utmost importance to the global business community.
The firm: DLA Piper assists clients with business transactions and cross-border disputes throughout Latin America. It handles matters in every country in the region and across every industry sector in which its clients operate. As the level of sophisticated, cross-border activity continues to grow throughout the entire region, DLA Piper continues to expand its services to clients with a Latin America presence through its cooperation with Campos Mello Advogados in Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, Brazil and with its DLA Piper multi-disciplinary practice with offices in:
- Bogota, Colombia DLA Piper Martinez Beltran
- Lima, Peru DLA Piper Pizarro Botto Escobar
- Mexico City, Mexico DLA Piper Gallastegui y Lozano
- Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, Brazil Campos Mello Advogados
- San Juan, Puerto Rico
- Santiago, Chile DLA Piper BAZ|NLD.
DLA Piper’s experience in Latin America includes assisting clients from inside and outside the region with the full range of business, legal and commercial services that DLA Piper provides worldwide:
- Capital markets;
- Compliance and investigations;
- Energy, mining and natural resources;
- Family groups;
- Franchise and distribution matters;
- Inbound and outbound capital investments;
- International arbitration and disputes;
- Labor and employment, immigration;
- Private equity and debt financing;
- Project finance and public-private partnerships;
- Tax structuring, transfer pricing, imports and market access issues;
- Technology, telecommunications and intellectual property, privacy and data security, e-commerce;
- Real estate and hospitality.
A number of DLA Piper’s lawyers were born or raised and educated in the region and are fluent in Spanish and/or Portuguese. Many have also practiced law in both the US and Latin America and are intimately familiar with civil law systems and with the cultural and legal nuances required to successfully do business in the region.
DLA Piper’s strategic relationships on the ground throughout Latin America enhance its understanding of the region and enable it to provide its clients with practical, meaningful legal advice. DLA Piper’s global platform in more than 40 countries enables it to serve all of its clients’ legal needs, whether they are based in Latin America or wish to do business there.
|Latin America chair||Roger Meltzer|
Staff FiguresOther fee-earners : 2,953 Total staff : 4,921
OtherPartners : 1,404
Romania: Employment & Labour Law
Published: August 2019
Authors: Monica Georgiadis Andra Trantea Elena Monica Preoțescu Paula Boteanu
This country-specific Q&A provides an overview to Employment & Labour Law laws and regulations that may occur in Romania.
Colombia: Mergers & Acquisitions
Published: August 2019
Authors: Juan Manuel de la Rosa Felipe Quintero
This country-specific Q&A provides an overview to Mergers & Acquisitions laws and regulations that may occur in Colombia.
Published: September 2019
Authors: Ortwin Carron
This country-specific Q&A provides an overview to Tax laws and regulations that may occur in Belgium.
The Netherlands: Tax
Published: September 2019
Authors: Jian-Cheng Ku Rhys Bane
This country-specific Q&A provides an overview to Tax laws and regulations that may occur in The Netherlands.
Colombia: Competition Litigation
Published: August 2019
Authors: María Claudia Martínez Beltrán Daniela Huertas Vergara
This country-specific Q&A provides an overview to Competition Litigation laws and regulations that may occur in Colombia.
Top Tier Firm Rankings
- Commercial deals and contracts
- Cyber law (including data privacy and data protection)
- Land use/zoning
- M&A: middle-market ($500m-999m)
- Patents: licensing
- Product liability, mass tort and class actions: pharmaceuticals and medical devices - defense
- Telecoms and broadcast: regulatory
- Patents: litigation (full coverage)
- Patents: litigation (International Trade Commission)
- Real estate investment trusts (REITs)
- Technology transactions
- Telecoms and broadcast: transactional
- Trademarks: non-contentious (including prosecution, portfolio management and licensing)
- Venture capital and emerging companies
- Advertising and marketing: transactional
- Construction (including construction litigation)
- Energy: renewable/alternative power
- Healthcare: life sciences
- Healthcare: service providers
- Insurance: advice to insurers
- Insurance: non-contentious
- International tax
- Labor-management relations
- Product liability, mass tort and class actions: automotive/transport - defense
- Product liability, mass tort and class actions: toxic tort - defense
- Securities litigation - defense
- Structured finance: securitization
- US taxes: contentious
- Capital markets: debt
- Capital markets: equity offerings
- Civil litigation/class actions: defense
- Commercial lending
- Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense
- Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: transactional
- Energy: transactions: oil and gas
- Labor and employment disputes (including collective actions): defense
- M&A litigation: defense
- Private equity buyouts
- Product liability, mass tort and class actions: consumer products (including tobacco) - defense
- Trade secrets (litigation and non-contentious matters)
- Trademarks: litigation
- US taxes: non-contentious
- Employee benefits, executive compensation and retirement plans: design
- Energy: transactions: conventional power
- Private equity funds (including venture capital)
- Restructuring (including bankruptcy): corporate
- Project finance