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King & Spalding Can’t Arbitrate Against Boehringer Ingelheim

Feb. 28, 2018, 4:26 PM

King & Spalding can’t arbitrate against Boehringer Ingelheim and its affiliates because of past work the firm did for the companies, a New York trial court ruled Feb. 22.

Lawyers who represent clients in an industry with just a few main players should be extra cautious about suing former clients. Any potential violation of a lawyer’s duty of loyalty may lead to disqualification, even if the old and new representations don’t involve the same transaction or litigation.

From about 1998 to 2011, King & Spalding intermittently represented petitioners Merial, Inc., Merial Société Par Actions Simplifée, and Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH in ...