Dewey, Skadden, Allen & Overy, Baker Botts: Business of Law
Four insurance and reinsurance dispute resolution lawyers went to Patton Boggs LLP (1211L), including partners John M. Nonna, Larry P. Schiffer, Eridania Perez and of counsel Suman Chakraborty. They will join the commercial litigation practice in New York, the firm said in a statement.
Nonna was chairman of Dewey’s insurance and reinsurance dispute resolution practice and a member of the firm’s international arbitration and cross-border dispute resolution practice group.
Edward Newberry, managing partner of Patton Boggs, said in a phone interview that the firm wooed Nonna and his team over the past several months. Last year, the firm expanded its insurance dispute resolution practice with the addition of three insurance litigation partners to the firm’s Newark, New Jersey, office, led by Mark Sheridan.
Mayer Brown LLP (1120L) also announced yesterday that insurance regulatory adviser James R. Woods has joined the firm as a partner and a co-leader of the global insurance industry group. He will also be a member of Mayer Brown’s corporate & securities practice. Woods will divide his time between the firm’s offices in Palo Alto, California, and New York. Previously, he served as Dewey’s co-chairman of the global insurance industry sector practice.
Bankruptcy partner Peter Ivanick is expected to join Hogan Lovells LLP’ (1131L)s New York office today. The New York Times reported his hiring yesterday. Patent lawyer and partner Lawrence Sung joined Baker & Hostetler LLP (1155L) in Washington yesterday, according to the office managing partner Jeffrey H. Paravano, who confirmed that Sung was hired as a partner.
Dewey has been losing lawyers because of partner compensation, according to the Times. The firm lost 12 insurance and regulatory lawyers to Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP (1179L) on March 17. Last month, it created a chairman’s office with five co- equal members.
“We have said for weeks now that there would be additional departures both at the firm’s insistence and from professionals who didn’t feel they fit in with the new structure of the firm,” Dewey said in a statement yesterday. “These departures, like the ones before them, will not have a negative economic impact on the firm. When we put the new structure of the firm together, it was with the anticipation that while it still would be a major international firm in terms of scope, size and practice areas, it would be somewhat smaller in terms of the number of professionals. In keeping with that, there will be some additional departures yet to come.”
Skadden Partner Named General Counsel of Occidental Petroleum
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP partner John C. Ale was appointed vice president and general counsel of the firm’s long-time client Occidental Petroleum Corporation, succeeding Donald P. de Brier, who is becoming corporate executive vice president.
Ale, who joined Skadden in 2002, was head of the Houston office since 2005. He was a member of the global energy and infrastructure projects practice. Charles W. Schwartz, head of the litigation practice in Houston, will take over as Houston office leader. Schwartz focuses his business litigation on representing companies and their officers and directors in merger and acquisition litigation and contests for corporate control, particularly in the energy sector. He also represents clients in corporate governance disputes, class and derivative actions involving fiduciary duty issues, and federal securities and antitrust law claims.
Allen Stanford’s Receiver Fights Investors for Pay Boost
Kevin Sadler (1112L) of Baker Botts LLP, outside counsel to R. Allen Stanford’s court-appointed receiver, Ralph Janvey (OXY), asked a U.S. judge to increase the amount of money he and his team of professionals can get for marshaling and liquidating the financier’s assets.
Janvey and his counsel made the request of U.S. District Judge David Godbey at a hearing in Dallas yesterday. Stanford’s defrauded investors, who haven’t been repaid any of the $7 billion owed to them, opposed the motion.
Sadler argued that the receiver’s team has been working at the same pay rates since 2009. He also said investors might have had more money if the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission sued Stanford sooner than February 2009.
Godbey rejected Sadler’s argument about the SEC as irrelevant to the fee issue. He didn’t make a decision on the request.
A federal jury last month found Stanford, 62, guilty of lying to people who bought certificates of deposit issued by his Antigua bank about what he was doing with their money and with what oversight. He’s scheduled to be sentenced on June 14.
Janvey, whom Godbey appointed in February 2009 -- four months before Stanford was indicted -- and his outside counsel have been paid more than $52 million. That sum doesn’t include a court-imposed $16 million hold-back.
“The investors, who have not received any money to date, would be in opposition to a change in rate at this point,” David Kitner, an attorney representing a court-sanctioned investors’ committee, told the judge today.
The SEC case is Securities and Exchange Commission v. Stanford International Bank Ltd., 09-cv-00298, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas (Dallas). The criminal case is U.S. v. Stanford, 09-cr-00342, U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas (Houston).
Baker & McKenzie, Jones Day Take Top Spots in Headcount Survey
Baker & McKenzie LLP, with 3,805 lawyers, is the biggest U.S. law firm, the National Law Journal said in a report based on its annual survey. Jones Day has the most lawyers in the U.S., 1,742, the trade newspaper said.
The survey, which examined regional data on firms’ growth found that there are 126,000 attorneys at the 250 biggest firms, a 1.7 percent increase from last year. DLA Piper LLP is second on the global list, followed by Jones Day.
Ranked by U.S. lawyers, Greenberg Traurig LLP, with 1,591, came in second and Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP (1111L), with 1531 U.S. lawyers, was third.
Baker & McKenzie is 47th by U.S.-based lawyers, with 629.
Procurement Lawyer Olaf Otting Joins Allen & Overy
Olaf Otting is joining the Frankfurt office of Allen & Overy LLP as a partner and head the public law practice.
“We are expanding our range of services in the field of public law and are now able to advise our clients in particular in the important areas of procurement law, especially in the transport, energy and health-care sectors, and public private partnerships,” Neil George Weiand, senior partner of Allen & Overy Germany, said.
Otting specializes in administrative law with a focus on procurement law, privatization, public-private partnerships, and building and real estate law. He headed the public law practice at Gleiss Lutz.
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