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AKIN GUMP STRAUSS HAUER & FELD Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld will be lead or co-counsel in 10 of the 70 cases before the Supreme Court this term (including the challenge to the District of Columbia’s gun ban). Practice leader Rex S. Heinke has 30 years’ experience in the field. Thomas Goldstein, leader of the Supreme Court practice, is before the high court frequently, teaches at Stanford and Harvard and writes for the influential SCOTUSblog. The 1,000-lawyer firm and its 16 appellate specialists have helped set precedents in Internet, discrimination and criminal law and more. Noteworthy cases:New York Board of Elections v. Lopez Torres, 128 S. Ct. 791 (2008). Lead attorney Andrew J. Rossman. The team successfully defended New York state’s system of selecting judicial nominees via delegate-based party conventions, against arguments that the system promoted political hackery. The court said the system was well within accepted constitutional norms. • Port of Seattle v. Federal Energy Regulation Comm’n, 499 F.3d 1016 (9th Cir. 2007). Lead attorney Rex S. Heinke. The firm represented the city of Seattle in helping to persuade the 9th Circuit to reverse federal energy regulators who blocked refunds to wholesale electricity purchasers in the face of evidence of price manipulation by West Coast power generators in 2000 and 2001. • United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians of Oklahoma v. U.S., 480 F.3d 1318 (Fed. Cir. 2007). Lead attorney Michael G. Rossetti. Reversing the trial court, the Federal Circuit ruled that the firm’s client, Keetoowah Band, was entitled to a trial on whether it deserved a share of a $40 million settlement with three tribes involving mineral rights. BAKER BOTTS Baker Botts, a Houston firm with roots dating to 1840, today fields 800 lawyers around the globe. .The 26-member appellate practice is headed by Macey Reasoner Stokes, of the Houston office, and covers all 13 of the U.S. courts of appeals and all of the state appellate courts. An eight-lawyer U.S. Supreme Court practice is led by Jeffrey A. Lamken, a former assistant U.S. solicitor general. Noteworthy cases:Morgan Stanley Inc. v. Coleman (Parent) Holdings Inc., 955 So. 2d 1124 (Fla. 4th Ct. App. 2007). Lead attorney Jeffrey A. Lamken. Ronald O. Perelman’s $1.58 billion securities fraud jury verdict looked like one for the ages, but got trashed by Florida’s 4th District Court of Appeal. The intermediate appellate court adopted arguments in the main brief drafted by Baker Botts that Perelman’s corporation failed to show what damages it had suffered from the alleged manipulation of the value of Sunbeam Products Inc. shares. The Florida Supreme Court denied review. • Klesch & Co. v. Liberty Media Corp., 234 Fed.Appx. 829 (2007). Lead counsel Stan R. Mortenson, Jeffrey A. Lamken and David Super. The firm defended client Liberty Media Corp.’s win in a $600 million contract dispute and won vindication from the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. • Moncrief Oil International Inc. v. OAO Gazprom, 481 F.3d 309 (5th Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Michael S. Goldberg and Aaron Streett. The 5th Circuit affirmed the dismissal on ground of jurisdiction of a $7 billion breach of contract claim involving development of a natural gas field in Russia. COVINGTON & BURLING Covington & Burling has been a fixture in Washington since its founding in 1919, and was the professional home of legends like Dean Acheson and Hugh Cox. The firm’s 608 attorneys include about 60 members of the appellate and Supreme Court litigation practice. The firm boasts 16 former U.S. Supreme Court clerks, six alumni of the solicitor general’s office and 150 former federal appellate law clerks. They have argued more than 50 cases before the Supreme Court and hundreds in state and federal appeals courts. Noteworthy cases:Watters v. Wachovia Bank, 127 S. Ct. 1559 (2007). Lead counsel Robert Long, Stuart C. Stock, Keith A.Noreika and Emily Johnson Henn. The Supreme Court ruled that subsidiaries of nationally chartered banks, including the Michigan mortgage company at issue here, are no more subject to state licensing requirements than the parent bank would be. The case attracted more than a dozen amicus briefs. • Oakland Raiders v. National Football League, 161 P.3d 151 (Calif. 2007). Lead attorney Gregg H. Levy. The California Supreme Court reinstated a state trial court verdict for client National Football League, which had been accused of tortious interference with the Oakland Raiders’ plans to build a football stadium in Los Angeles. The court said the trial judge failed to specify his reasons for finding juror misconduct. It therefore fell to the Raiders to prepare a record on the alleged misconduct, and the team hadn’t done that. The team had asserted damages of more than $1.2 billion. • Rowe v. Hoffman-La Roche Inc., 917 A.2d 767 (N.J. 2007). Lead attorneys Paul W. Schmidt and Michael X.Imbroscio. The New Jersey Supreme Court accepted Covington’s arguments that Michigan law, not New Jersey law, controlled in this action by a Michigan consumer over the side effects of the acne drug Accutane. Michigan law did not allow such a suit. The outcome shielded a large New Jersey company against suits by litigants whose home-state laws are less favorable than New Jersey’s. DEWEY & LEBOEUF Dewey & LeBoeuf is headquartered in New York, but its 1,400 lawyers span the globe, and so does the reach of its appellate work. The firm lacks a dedicated appellate practice; instead, a number of its litigation partners with extensive appellate experience handle appeals across the country. Constitutional law specialist Michael C. Dorf of Columbia Law School is special counsel to the firm. Noteworthy cases:Applied Industrial Materials Corp. v. Ovalar Makine Ticaret ve Sanayi A.S., 492 F.3d 132 (2d Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Jeffrey L. Kessler, David G. Feher and Robert A. de By. The 2d Circuit affirmed a new standard for determining arbitrator bias in a case arising from a joint venture between a U.S. and a Turkish company to transport and distribute petroleum coke in Turkey. The court said that an arbitrator whose company had undisclosed dealings with one of the parties could not get around the conflict of interest by closing his eyes to it. • Feesers Inc. v. Michael Foods Inc., 498 F.3d 206 (3d Cir. 2008). Lead attorneys Jeffrey L. Kessler, John F. Collins and Eamon O’Kelly. The 3d Circuit clarified the competitive-injury element of federal price-discrimination law. The court said that companies are competitors subject to the law when they “are each directly after the same dollar,” notwithstanding differences in their business operations. • Wedelstedt v. Wiley, 477 F.3d 1160 (10th Cir. 2007). Lead attorney Henry W. Asbill. The 10th Circuit invalidated the U.S. Bureau of Prisons rule preventing prisoners from spending more than 10% of their sentences or a maximum of six months in a halfway house or other nonprison confinement. The 10th Circuit became the fourth appellate court to conclude that Congress never intended to limit the time inmates could spend in community confinement centers. FISH & RICHARDSON Fish & Richardson can boast a century’s appellate experience, mostly at the cutting edge of intellectual property law. It can deploy more than 425 attorneys, including some 35 attorneys in the appellate practice under Robert Hillman, Frank Porcelli and John Dragseth. The firm encourages litigation partners to handle their own appeals, and appellate practitioners to take trials from time to time. Noteworthy cases:Morrow v. Microsoft Corp., 499 F.3d 1332 (Fed. Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Frank E. Scherkenbach, Kurt L. Glitzenstein, Craig R. Smith and Charles H. Sanders. Patent law trumped the principles of bankruptcy and trusts in this dispute over a patent related to Internet hyperlinks. The Federal Circuit said that a trustee in the bankruptcy of At Home Corp. lost standing to sue Microsoft Corp. for infringement of the patent. Of three trusts, the one granted the right to sue for infringement was not the trust given ownership of the patent, and the one given ownership lacked the right to sue. • Paice LLC v. Toyota Motor Corp., 504 F.3d 1293 (Fed. Cir. 2007). Lead counsel Ruffin B. Cordell, Ahmed J. Davis and Robert E. Hillman. Expanding on eBay Inc. v. MercExchange LLC, 547 U.S. 388 (2006), the Federal Circuit ruled that if a court forces a patent holder to grant a compulsory license, it must say why the royalty it sets is appropriate. The case involved gas/electric hybrid motors being marketed by Toyota, the firm’s client. • SRI Int’l Inc. v. Internet Sec. Sys. Inc., 511 F.3d 1186 (Fed. Cir. 2008). Lead attorneys Frank E. Scherkenbach, Robert E. Hillman, Joshua Bleet, Michael J. Kane and Michael M. Rosen. The firm scored a reversal of summary judgment in a patent case that hinged on the definition of prior art. The Federal Circuit said it would not presume that technical specifications posted on a File Transfer Protocol server as part of a peer-review process was publicly accessible. The answer would depend, the court said, on whether anyone could actually find the specifications � and that would be a matter for a jury. GIBSON, DUNN & CRUTCHER The presence of Theodore B. Olson alone would be enough to cement Los Angeles-based Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher among the elite of appellate practices. In fact, the firm’s 31 appellate specialists represent an embarrassment of riches: Miguel A. Estrada, Daniel M. Kolkey, Theodore Boutrous and more. During the past three terms, Gibson Dunn argued 11 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and prevailed in eight of them. The firm’s advocacy of the Republican side in Bush v. Gore changed American history in ways still unfolding. Noteworthy cases:Riegel v. Medtronic Inc., 128 S. Ct. 999 (2008). Lead counsel Theodore B. Olson. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that federal law pre-empts state products liability claims involving the design and labeling of medical devices declared safe and effective by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, keeping such claims out of the hands of state court juries. • In re Katrina Canal Breaches Litigation, No. 07-30119 (5th Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Rich Doren and Daniel Nelson. The 5th Circuit reversed the trial court, ruling that, notwithstanding any contribution by human negligence to the flooding in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, flood exclusions in property insurance policies “unambiguously preclude” recovery by policyholders. • Kirkendall v. Department of the Army, 479 F.3d 830 (Fed. Cir.) (en banc), cert. denied, 128 S. Ct. 375 (2007). Lead attorney Theodore B. Olson. The Federal Circuit appointed Olson as pro bono counsel for a disabled veteran who felt he had been unfairly denied administrative review of his rejection for a civilian Army job. In the rare en banc appeal, the court ruled, 7-6, that veterans are entitled to preferential treatment or waivers on filing deadlines under the Veterans Employment Opportunities Act. HELLER EHRMAN The 650-attorney firm Heller Ehrman argues cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, the federal circuit courts and the various state supreme and intermediate appellate courts. The 26 attorneys in its “appeals and strategy” practice include former Supreme Court and federal appellate clerks and former prosecutors in representations that have included the defense of affirmative action at the University of Michigan. Noteworthy cases:Integra LifeSciences I Ltd. v. Merck KGaA, 496 F.3d 1334 (Fed. Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys E. Joshua Rosenkranz and M. Patricia Thayer. Heller helped secure a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in 2005 that expanded the safe harbor for researchers experimenting with patented compounds while preparing for clinical trials. On remand, the opposition advanced arguments that would effectively have closed that harbor. The Federal Circuit rejected those arguments and tossed a $6 million jury verdict, ending 11 years of litigation. • Sanders v. Brown, 504 F.3d 903 (9th Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Darryl Snider, Kenneth L. Chernof, E. Joshua Rosenkranz, James F. Speyer, Anna S. McLean and Eric Shapland. The 9th Circuit rejected claims that the 1998 Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement essentially set up an illegal cartel. Heller Ehrman represented the four big tobacco companies. • Cascade Health Solutions v. PeaceHealth, 502 F.3d 895 (2007). Lead attorneys M. Lawrence Popofsky and Heather Leal. The 9th Circuit threw out a $16 million antitrust verdict against a Pacific Northwest hospital system, ruling that its bundling of health services was legal as long as the resulting prices didn’t fall below “an appropriate measure of the defendant’s costs.” The court expressly rejected the 3d Circuit’s landmark analysis in LePage’s Inc. v. 3M, 324 F.3d 141 (3d Cir. 2003). The court asked the Oregon Supreme Court for an advisory opinion on whether state law provides a case against the client, PeaceHealth. JONES DAY Jones Day’s “issues and appeals” practice was founded by Erwin Griswold, the late solicitor general and Harvard Law School dean. Its 53 attorneys, many with experience as U.S. Supreme Court clerks or in the upper ranks of the Justice Department, have argued 12 cases before the high court within the past three years. They are supplemented by members of the litigation practice. The 2,300-lawyer firm won eight of those cases, and has helped establish landmark precedents in antitrust, Fifth Amendment takings and truth in lending. Glen D. Nager chairs the practice, based in Washington. Noteworthy cases:Ledbetter v. Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., 127 S. Ct. 2162 (2007). Lead attorneys Glen D. Nager and Michael A. Carvin. The Supreme Court ruled, 5-4, that an employee bringing a lawsuit claiming pay discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 must do so within 180 days of the original discriminatory action � not within 180 days of his or her last paycheck. • Sinochem Int’l Co. v. Malaysia Int’l Shipping Corp., 127 S. Ct. 1184 (2007). Lead attorneys Gregory A. Castanias, Peter J. Wang and Z. Alex Zhang. An opponent tried to drag the client into federal court in Pennsylvania over a business dispute already in litigation in China. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the trial judge was right to dismiss the action on the ground of forum non conveniens without looking at the merits of the case. • Boehner v. McDermott, 484 F.3d 573 (D.C. Cir. en banc), cert. denied, 128 S. Ct. 712 (2007). Lead attorneys Michael A. Carvin and Louis K. Fisher. The D.C. Circuit upheld summary judgement and damages against a congressman for disclosing the contents of an illegally intercepted telephone call. The en banc court said that the First Amendment provided no defense, and the Supreme Court declined to hear the matter. K&L GATES At 1,500-attorney Kirkpatrick & Lockhart Preston Gates Ellis, members of the appellate practice include veterans like former Attorney General Richard Thornburgh. The practice emphasizes writing skills and precise arguments tailored to the fine points of the law. It makes frequent use of amicus briefs to influence precedents on behalf of its business, government and institutional clients. Partner Paul Hancock, then a Florida deputy attorney general, represented the state in Bush v. Gore. Noteworthy cases:Gay v. CreditInform, 511 F.3d 369 (3d Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys David R. Fine and Carlton I. Strouss. The 3d Circuit ruled that arbitration agreements cannot be deemed “unconscionable” solely on the ground that they require consumers to waive their right to pursue class actions. This was the first federal appellate ruling testing the federal Credit Repair Organizations Act against the Federal Arbitration Act, and delivered a strong statement that these class action waivers are legal. • Travelers Cas. & Sur. Co. v. E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co., No. 462, 2006, 2007 (Del. 2007). Lead attorneys John M. Sylvester, Christopher C. French and Kimberley Geary. The Delaware Supreme Court ruled for client DuPont on several points of insurance allocation law involving underlying claims of injury or damage triggering multiple occurrence-based policies. Besides boosting the payout to DuPont, the ruling clarified Delaware law on the subject. • Transmission Agency of Northern California v. Federal Energy Regulation Comm’n, 495 F.3d 663 (D.C. Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Dennis Ehling and Roger Stark. The firm challenged federal regulators who ordered the city of Vernon, Calif., to retroactively lower the rates for access to its high-voltage power lines. The D.C. Circuit ruled that the regulators lacked jurisdiction over a municipal entity. KIRKLAND & ELLIS Kenneth W. Starr helped establish Chicago-based Kirkland & Ellis’ appellate practice while a member of the firm between 1993 and 2004; now the dean of Pepperdine University School of Law, he remains on call. The 1,300-lawyer firm prides itself on the former U.S. Supreme Court and federal appellate clerks it has assembled. Current practice chief Christopher Landau, for example, clerked successively for justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas. The practice is part of the litigation department, with perhaps 10 core members. Noteworthy cases:Morse v. Frederick, 127 S. Ct. 2618 (2007). The “Bong Hits 4 Jesus” case. Lead attorney Kenneth W. Starr persuaded the Supreme Court to reverse the 9th Circuit in a First Amendment test case. The court established that a Juneau, Alaska, high school principal was within her authority to discipline a student who displayed a banner deemed to promote drug use during a school event held off school grounds. • Leonard v. Nationwide Mut. Ins. Co., 499 F.3d 419 (5th Cir. 2007). Lead attorney Christopher Landau. This was the first appellate ruling on an insurance dispute involving Hurricane Katrina damage. It involved “anti-concurrent causation” clauses denying coverage in cases when it’s not clear whether wind or water caused storm damage. Overruling the trial court, the 5th Circuit said the clauses are enforceable, and that a policyholder cannot bring a claim based on an insurance agent’s oral promise if it contradicts the written policy. • Nilssen v. Osram Sylvania Inc., 504 F.3d 1223 (Fed. Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Brian D. Sieve and Garret A. Leach. The Federal Circuit affirmed that a number of patents related to fluorescent light manufacturing were unenforceable because of the cumulative effect of inequitable conduct by a pro se patent prosecutor during the patent application process. LATHAM & WATKINS The 40 attorneys in Latham & Watkins’ Washington-based appellate practice comprise a small but effective corner of a firm that can marshal 2,100 attorneys. The appellate team is led by Maureen E. Mahoney, a former deputy solicitor general who persuaded the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold the University of Michigan Law School’s admissions affirmative action plan and to overturn Arthur Andersen’s criminal conviction. Noteworthy cases:Safeco Insurance Co. of America v. Burr, 127 S. Ct. 2201 (2007). Lead attorney Maureen E. Mahoney. Safeco and GEICO called in Latham after the 9th Circuit reversed summary judgment against a class that claimed the insurers unlawfully used customers’ credit ratings against them without notice. The Supreme Court ruled that the class would have to show at least “objective recklessness” by the insurers, a threshold high enough to protect against billions of dollars in claims. • SEC v. National Presto Industries Inc., 486 F.3d 305 (7th Cir. 2007). Lead attorney Maureen E. Mahoney. Latham won a reversal of a trial court ruling that Presto, maker of the SaladShooter, must register as an investment company because it held more than 40% of its assets in investment securities. The 7th Circuit ruled that under the Investment Companies Act of 1940, Presto was primarily involved in business other than investing, notwithstanding its temporary hoard of liquid assets. Other large U.S. companies had been forced to seek special dispensations from the agency under its theory. • Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association v. Brentwood Academy, 127 S. Ct. 2489 (2007). Lead attorney Maureen E. Mahoney. The Supreme Court overruled the 6th Circuit, siding with Latham’s client, Tennessee’s school sports governing association, against a private school coach who broke a rule prohibiting early solicitation of middle school students. “We need no empirical data to credit [the association's] common-sense conclusion that hard-sell tactics directed at middle school students could lead to exploitation,” the court said. MAYER BROWN Mayer Brown dates its appellate practice to 1893. Since then, its attorneys have argued more than 200 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, establishing precedents on antitrust, attorney-client privilege, punitive damages and, most recently, securities class actions. Sixty of the Chicago firm’s 1,000 attorneys, including four deputy solicitors general and 10 former Supreme Court clerks, practice before the Supreme Court and other appellate tribunals. Noteworthy cases:Stoneridge Investment Partners LLC v. Scientific-Atlanta Inc., 128 S. Ct. 761 (2008). Lead attorney Stephen M. Shapiro. The Supreme Court blocked a major avenue of securities litigation by ruling that plaintiffs cannot sue bankers and other advisers that have not directly participated in misleading investors. The Wall Street Journal called it “the biggest securities-litigation court clash in a generation.” • Philip Morris USA v. Williams, 127 S. Ct. 1057 (2007). Lead attorney Andrew Frey. The Supreme Court tossed a $79.5 million punitive damages award for the widow of a smoker and established the precedent that juries cannot consider harm to third parties such as other smokers when assessing punitive damages. • Credit Suisse First Boston v. Billing, 127 S. Ct. 2383 (2007). Lead attorney Stephen M. Shapiro. The Supreme Court reversed the 2d Circuit, ruling that investors cannot bring antitrust actions against the underwriters of technology stocks, because to do so would conflict with securities law. The outcome spared the clients billions of dollars in liability for the bursting of the dot-com bubble. MCDERMOTT, WILL & EMERY McDermott, Will & Emery is a global law firm with 1,100 attorneys, about 20 of whom specialize in appellate practice. The firm has argued before the U.S. Supreme Court, each of the 13 federal appellate circuits and numerous state supreme courts. The team’s leaders are M. Miller Baker in the Washington office and Rory Little, who also teaches at University of California Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco. Noteworthy cases:Beck v. PACE International Union, 127 S. Ct. 2310 (2007). Lead attorney M. Miller Baker. The Supreme Court rejected a union’s bid to force the bankrupt Crown Vantage Inc. and Crown Paper Co. to merge the pension plans into a fund managed by the union. McDermott represented the bankruptcy trustee. • Federal Election Comm’n v. Wisconsin Right to Life Inc., 127 S. Ct. 2652 (2007). Lead attorney M. Miller Baker. The Supreme Court struck down the McCain-Feingold law’s restriction on pre-election issue ads by corporations or unions as an unconstitutional abridgement of free speech. McDermott was co-counsel for Wisconsin Right to Life. • In re Seagate Technology LLC, 497 F.3d 1360. Lead counsel Brian E. Ferguson. The Federal Circuit upended 24 years of precedent by rejecting the “affirmative duty of care” to avoid infringement. Willfulness now requires a showing of “objective recklessness.” O’MELVENY & MYERS O’Melveny & Myers’ 25-member appellate group is led by Walter Dellinger, the former acting solicitor general and chief of the Office of Legal Counsel in the Justice Department. He’s not the only star of a group that has argued more than 70 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and contributed briefs in hundreds more. The 1,000-lawyer firm is engaged in some of the most important cases on the high court’s docket, including the fate of the $2.5 billion punitive damages award in the Exxon Valdez disaster. Noteworthy cases:Philip Morris USA v. Williams, 127 S. Ct. 1057 (2007). Lead attorney Jonathan Hacker. O’Melveny contributed an amicus brief for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in this case, which set the precedent that juries cannot consider harm to third parties such as other smokers when assessing punitive damages. • Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Alabama Dept. of Conservation and Natural Resources, 2007 WL 3224585 (Ala. 2007). Lead attorneys Charles Lifland, Jonathan Hacker and John F. Daum were main authors of the brief. The Alabama Supreme Court reversed a $3.5 billion punitive award against the energy company for allegedly defrauding the state of royalties on natural gas leases. • Sperry v. Crompton Corp., 8 N.Y.3d 204 (N.Y. 2007). Lead attorneys Ian Simmons, Jonathan Hacker, Ben Bradshaw, Mark Davies and Matthew Cosgrove. O’Melveny contributed to the briefs and oral arguments in this putative class action on behalf of motorists who claimed price-fixing for the chemicals used to make rubber. The New York Court of Appeals ruled that a state antitrust law did not permit class actions or trebled damages. The claims might have exceeded $18 billion. QUINN EMANUEL Quinn Emanuel Urquhart Oliver & Hedges hired outgoing Stanford Law School Dean Kathleen M. Sullivan in 2005 to build its appellate practice. With six senior appellate lawyers and a group of associates who have clerked in the courts of appeals, the firm is becoming a player in appellate advocacy of national and international import. Noteworthy cases:Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc. v. Allegheny Energy Inc., 500 F.3d 171 (2d Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Daniel H. Bromberg and Kathleen M. Sullivan. The 2d Circuit threw out a $158 million judgment against client Allegheny Energy in a dispute over whether Merrill Lynch misrepresented the value of an energy trading company it sold to Allegheny. • Stoneridge Investment Partners LLC v. Scientific-Atlanta Inc., 128 S. Ct. 761 (2007). Lead attorney Kathleen M. Sullivan. In rejecting third-party liability in a seminal securities fraud ruling, the Supreme Court cited two amicus briefs out of the dozens filed. One was Quinn Emanuel’s brief on behalf of Nasdaq and the New York Stock Exchange. It argued that such liability would require companies doing business with publicly traded companies to adopt onerous audit and insurance burdens and thereby drive business abroad. • Grupo Televisa S.A. v. Telemundo Communications Group Inc., 485 F.3d 1233 (2007). Lead attorney Stephen Neuwirth. The firm persuaded the 11th Circuit to apply Florida law (which recognizes tortious interference with contracts) over Mexican law (which does not) in a dispute between rival Spanish-language broadcasters over the talents of a soap opera star. SIDLEY AUSTIN Sidley Austin’s appellate practice, launched in 1985, has argued some 70 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and has briefed more than 100. Of the firm’s 1,800 attorneys, 50 engage in appellate advocacy. Its amicus brief on behalf of retired military leaders was one of two singled out by the court in Grutter v. Bollinger, upholding the University of Michigan Law School’s affirmative action program. Five Sidley attorneys argued cases before the high court last year, including Carter G. Phillips, who contributed to such important precedents as Hall Street Assocs. LLC v. Mattell Inc., No. 06-989, which governed judicial review of arbitration awards. Noteworthy cases:Tellabs Inc. v. Makor Issues & Rights Ltd., 127 S. Ct. 2499 (2007). Lead attorneys Carter G. Phillips, David F. Graham, Robert N. Hochman, Hille R. Sheppard and former partner Richard Bernstein. The Supreme Court ruled, in a key test of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, that any inference of fraudulent intent must be more than merely plausible or reasonable; it must be at least as compelling as any opposing evidence of nonfraudulent intent. • Fox Television Stations Inc. v. FCC, 489 F.3d 444. Lead attorneys Carter G. Phillips, R. Clark Wadlow and James P. Young. Sidley represented lead plaintiff Fox in this broad attack by broadcasters on the Federal Communications Commission’s crackdown on broadcast “obscenity.” Here, the 2d Circuit ruled that the sanctions against even “fleeting” obscenity was impermissibly arbitrary and capricious. • Riegel v. Medtronic Inc., 128 S. Ct. 999 (2008). Lead attorneys Daniel E. Troy, Carter G. Phillips and Rebecca K. Wood. To the precedent that struck state torts against medical devices, the firm contributed an amicus brief arguing that the equipment is extensively regulated by federal authorities, and that state tort liability would undermine that process. SKADDEN Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom’s two-year-old, but growing, appellate practice counts 11 full-time attorneys, assisted by other members of the 2,100-attorney firm. The New York-based firm has a string of notable wins to its credit � killing off automatic injunctions in patent cases in eBay Inc. v. MercExchange LLC, 547 U.S. 388 (2006), for example. Noteworthy cases:Alston v. Advanced Brands and Importing Co., 494 F.3d 562 (6th Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Edward M. Crane, J. Russell Jackson and Steven F. Napolitano. Skadden represented Anheuser-Busch Cos. Inc. in this putative class action alleging alcohol advertisers were encouraging underage drinking. The 6th Circuit said the real culprits were the stores that sold to children and the children who bought alcohol. • Goldstein v. Pataki, 516 F.3d 50 (2d Cir. 2008). Lead attorneys Preeta D. Bansal and Douglas M. Kraus. Skadden, representing the Empire State Urban Development Corp., was among a number of firms and government lawyers defending the massive Atlantic Yards redevelopment project in Brooklyn, N.Y., in the first major takings case in New York since Kelo v. City of New London. 545 U.S. 469 (2005). The 2d Circuit rejected arguments that public involvement was a pretext for the private developer’s gain. • Tracinda Corp. v. DaimlerChrysler A.G., 502 F.3d 212 (3d Cir. 2007). Lead counsel Jonathan J. Lerner, Preeta D. Bansal, Lea Haber Kuck, Joseph N. Sacca and Gerhard Gnaedig. Skadden beat back investor Kirk Kerkorian’s effort to revive his $1.3 billion award against DaimlerChrysler A.G. over money he claimed he lost because he believed Daimler-Benz’s claim that it planned a “merger of equals” with Chrysler Corp. instead of an acquisition. The court issued a major ruling that broadly applied Chrysler’s jury-trial waiver to all corporate officers. The court said that the problematic phrase was promotional in nature and too vague to constitute fraud. WEIL, GOTSHAL & MANGES Since the beginning of last year, Weil, Gotshal & Manges has achieved eight significant appellate wins within the U.S. circuit courts of appeals. The 1,300- lawyer New York firm’s 18-attorney appellate group includes former Supreme Court and federal appellate clerks who litigate in groundbreaking areas of appellate law. Noteworthy cases:U.S. v. Lake, 472 F.3d 1247 (10th Cir. 2007). Lead attorneys Lisa R. Eskow and former partners Gregory S. Coleman and Edward C. Dawson. Weil represented former Westar Energy Inc. executive David C. Wittig on appeal from his conviction along with fellow executive Douglas Lake for looting the company. The 10th Circuit reversed on all counts. The court said the evidence against both men failed to support the core charges. • Fox v. Herzog Heine Geduld Inc., 232 Fed. Appx. 104 (2007). Lead attorney Mark A. Jacoby. After Merrill Lynch acquired a leading market maker firm, two members of the firm’s employee stock ownership plan staked a claim to the premium paid on some $100 million in unallocated stock. The 3d Circuit accepted Weil’s argument that nothing in the Employee Retirement Income Security Act countenanced the claim. • Orkin v. Taylor, 487 F.3d 734 (9th Cir. 2007). Lead attorney Steven Alan Reiss. The firm defended actress Elizabeth Taylor in a lawsuit filed by the heirs of a Jewish art collector who had fled Germany in 1939. The heirs claimed that Nazi persecution forced the woman to sell the Vincent van Gogh painting, “View of the Asylum and Chapel at Saint Remy,” which Taylor bought at auction in 1963. The 9th Circuit ruled the Holocaust Victims Redress Act creates no private right of action. WILLIAMS & CONNOLLY Williams & Connolly houses its 230 attorneys in a single office in Washington. Twelve of that number have argued before the U.S. Supreme Court (six of them more than once). The firm’s ranks include 15 former Supreme Court clerks plus former clerks from all 13 federal courts of appeals. In a 2006 case, the firm won the first repudiation by a federal appellate court of the government’s effort to entrust a privilege review of subpoenaed documents to a “taint team” comprising government prosecutors. Noteworthy cases:MedImmune Inc. v. Genentech Inc., 127 S. Ct. 764 (2007). Lead attorney John G. Kester. The Supreme Court voted, 8-1, to dispense with established Federal Circuit precedent. It reversed lower-court decisions against Williams & Connolly client MedImmune, ruling for the first time that a licensee need not actually break or terminate its license agreement before it can challenge the patent at issue. • People ex rel. Spitzer v. Grasso, 836 N.Y.S.2d 40 (N.Y. App. Div. 2007). Lead attorneys Brendan V. Sullivan and Gerson A. Zweifach. The intermediate-level New York Appellate Division ruled that then-state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer exceeded his authority in seeking return of the large compensation package paid to former New York Stock Exchange Chairman Richard Grasso, the firm’s client. • In re Prempro Products Liability Litig., 514 F.3d 825 (8th Cir. 2008). Lead attorney F. Lane Heard III. The 8th Circuit rejected an appeal by a plaintiff in the massive multidistrict litigation over Wyeth’s hormone replacement pharmaceuticals. WILMERHALE Former Solicitor General Seth Waxman leads a 58-lawyer appellate team at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr that has argued more than 115 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court, including seven in 2006 and 2007. The 1,000-attorney firm is engaged at every level of appellate practice � especially in intellectual property law, having briefed or argued 50 cases before the Federal Circuit during the past five years. In December, Waxman argued the Guant�namo Bay detainees’ habeas claims before the Supreme Court. Noteworthy cases:Limtiaco v. Camacho, 127 S. Ct. 1413 (2007). Lead attorneys Seth Waxman and Jonathan Cedarbaum. The court sided with the attorney general of Guam, the firm’s client, against the territory’s governor, blocking the issuance of $400 million in bonds. • TiVo Inc. v. EchoStar Communications Corp., 516 F.3d 1290 (2008). Lead attorneys Seth Waxman and Edward DuMont. The Federal Circuit upheld a $74 million patent jury verdict and injunction for client TiVo over digital video recorder technology. • Vietnam Association for Victims of Agent Orange v. Dow Chemical Co., 517 F.3d 104 (2d Cir. 2008). Lead attorneys Seth Waxman and Paul Wolfson. The 2d Circuit upheld dismissal of a lawsuit filed by Vietnamese citizens who alleged that they suffered illness due to the use of the defoliant Agent Orange during the Vietnamese war, citing lack of proof of causation and a tort shield for military contractors. WilmerHale represented Monsanto Co.

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