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Wake Up Call: Ex-Quinn Emanuel Partners Must Face Arbitration Over Boutique

April 25, 2019, 11:44 AM
  • When several Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan litigators split off early last year to start their own boutique, Selendy & Gay, the split was somewhat acrimonious. Now, it could get uglier after a New York state judge yesterday rejected 10 Selendy & Gay partners’ request to throw out Quinn Emanuel’s arbitration case against them. If the ruling stands and the partners lose the arbitration, they could be forced to fork over 10 percent of the fees they got from former Quinn Emanuel clients in the 18 months since they left, according to a report. (The Recorder)

  • Federal prosecutors have subpoenaed Paul Hastings’ invoices to Atlanta’s legal department to examine the firm’s financial relationship with the city’s top lawyer. The subpoena stems from a wider federal probe into alleged corruption in the city’s contracting process that has already resulted in five pleas, according to reports. (Atlanta-Journal-Constitution) (Above The Law)

  • Facebook Inc. estimated that it will cost as much as $5 billion to resolve a U.S. investigation into its privacy practices, as the social-media company moves to put the fallout from the Cambridge Analytica scandal behind it. (BN via BLAW)

  • is testing a program aimed at providing a cheaper, faster alternative for merchants on its site to settle patent disputes using neutral, third-party lawyers, according to reports. (Engadget) (The Information)

  • Dozens of lawsuits have already been filed targeting generic heart medications which have been taken by millions of Americans and are subject to a widening FDA-supervised recall over potential contamination with carcinogens. Lawyers say there could be thousands more lawsuits. (BN via BLAW)

  • A group of prominent conservative attorneys from Big Law firms including Sidley Austin; King & Spalding; Arnold & Porter, and Wachtell, released a statement urging Congress to “conduct further investigation” into President Donald Trump’s behavior as described in the Mueller report. (National Law Journal) Meanwhile, Trump is vowing to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to intervene if Congress mounts an impeachment effort against him. The Constitution doesn’t provide a legal basis for the justices to consider such a request. (BN via BLAW)

Lawyers, Law Firms

  • Covington & Burling’s Global Problem Solving team, which includes partner Eric Holder, the former U.S. attorney general, and about 120 other lawyers, plus former diplomats, and policy experts, aims to take on international issues and challenges. (BLAW)

  • UK firm Fieldfisher is merging with 50-lawyer Irish firm McDowell Purcell, the latest London firm move to get ready for Brexit. (Financial Times)

  • In the 1980s, many top lawyers left Big Law to launch or join smaller litigation boutique firms, a trend that reversed itself about a decade later. But things are beginning to swing back. (BLAW via BLB)

  • Big Law’s “discount culture” cost Big Law firms $4.4 billion in profits last year, according to a report. (American Lawyer)


  • Cravath, Swaine & Moore is advising Occidental Petroleum Co. on a new, $38 billion, offer to acquire Anadarko Petroleum Corp. that could derail Chevron Corp’s earlier agreement to buy Anadarko. (BLAW via BLB)

  • U.K. antitrust regulators formally scuttled Sainsbury Plc’s 7.3 billion-pound ($9.4 billion) bid to buy Walmart Inc.’s Asda unit, in what would have been a merger of grocery store chains. (BN)

  • Leucadia Asset Management, a branch of Jefferies Financial Group Inc., is backing a new investment firm, Stonyrock Partners LP, led by former Blackstone Group LP and Carlyle Group LP executives who said their firm will buy stakes in middle-market private equity, real estate, infrastructure, hedge fund, private credit and venture capital companies. Willkie Farr & Gallagher said it’s advising the founders of Stonyrock Partners, which is seeking seeking up to $1 billion for its debut fund. (BN)

  • U.S. merger regulators took about a month longer to complete significant investigations in 2018, even though the number of probes fell by almost 40 percent, according to a new report by Dechert. (BLAW)

  • New Jersey Superior Court awarded Lowenstein Sandler client Mist Pharmaceuticals $172,681.31, to cover the firm’s litigation fees and costs in the company’s ongoing coverage litigation against Berkley Insurance Company. (

Laterals, Moves, Promotions

  • Kramer Levin hired veteran leveraged finance lawyer Michael McKay as counsel in New York. McKay spent 17 years at Vinson & Elkins, where he specialized in energy work, 13 years at Skadden, and a year and a half in-house at Deutsche Bank. He arrives most recently from Stamford-based Martin LLP. (

Legal Actions, Bankruptcies, Decisions

  • Public defenders representing Nikolas Cruz, who is charged with killing 17 people in the Parkland school shooting, asked to be removed from the case after finding out that their client is in line to get part of his parents’ $864,929 life insurance policy. (Daily Beast)

To contact the correspondent on this story: Rick Mitchell in Paris at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rebekah Mintzer at; Molly Ward at

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