Our Strategic Motions & Appeals group focuses on the most important legal issues that arise at every step in our clients’ matters—from the earliest stages of litigation through appeal.  

We craft legal strategy from the ground up, often advising on complex and potentially precedent-setting matters well before litigation is filed. After litigation has been commenced, our team brings a sophisticated and efficient approach to the briefing and argument of dispositive motions, appeals, and the certiorari and merits stages of review at the Supreme Court of the United States. Our Strategic Motions & Appeals group works alongside other Willkie litigators and subject matter practitioners, and is often retained to assist existing counsel from other firms.

At every stage, we design and implement creative solutions to our clients’ highest-stakes litigation problems, across every substantive area of law and subject matter. Our interdisciplinary teams are led by experienced practitioners who have extensive first-chair experience litigating in federal and state appellate courts across the country, including the Supreme Court of the United States. Our lawyers also argue dispositive and other significant motions in trial courts, particularly where one or more legal issues lie at the heart of a complex dispute.

Our lawyers have served as law clerks at every level of the federal judiciary, including every federal court of appeals and the Supreme Court of the United States.



Our attorneys have extensive experience litigating before every federal appellate court in the country, the U.S. Supreme Court, and many state appellate and supreme courts. Recent representative matters include:

  • AlixPartners, LLP v. Fund for Protection of Investor’s’ Rights in Foreign States, 142 S. Ct. 2078 (2022): obtained a unanimous victory on behalf of AlixPartners, LLP in a case concerning whether 28 U.S.C. § 1782 authorizes a U.S. court to order discovery in aid of private foreign arbitration proceedings.
  • Animal Science Products, Inc. v. Hebei Welcome Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., 138 S. Ct. 1865 (2018): obtained a unanimous victory at the U.S. Supreme Court reviving antitrust claims brought by U.S. companies challenging price-fixing conduct by a cartel of Chinese vitamin C exporters.*
  • Armour v. City of Indianapolis, 566 U.S. 673 (2012): argued on behalf of a group of taxpayers challenging the constitutionality of a discriminatory municipal taxation scheme.*
  • Bloate v. United States, 559 U.S. 196 (2010): successfully argued against the automatic exclusion of pretrial motion preparation time under the Speedy Trial Act.*
  • CBOE Futures Exchange, LLC v. SEC & Minneapolis Grain Exchange, LLC, No. 21-1038 (D.C. Cir., pending): representing intervenor MGEX in defending exemptive relief granted by the SEC that authorized trading of the SPIKES futures product, which offers markets the first viable competing product measuring S&P 500 volatility futures.
  • Petroleos de Venezuela S.A. v. MUFG Union Bank, N.A., No. 20-3858 (2d Cir., pending): representing PDV Holding, Inc. (PDVH) in appeal concerning the validity of Venezuela’s 2020 bonds secured by a majority of PDVH’s shares in CITGO Holding, Inc.
  • Sakab Saudi Holding Co. v. Aljabri, No. 22-1052 (1st Cir., pending): representing Sakab Saudi Holding Company in an appeal relating to the application of the state secrets privilege.
  • Akhmetshin v. Browder, No. 19-7129 (D.C. Cir., pending): defending William Browder in a defamation action brought by Rinat Akhmetshin, including in an appeal involving personal jurisdiction questions of first impression.
  • Navy Federal Credit Union v. LTD Financial Services, LP, 972 F.3d 344 (4th Cir. 2020): obtained reversal of the district court’s dismissal of Navy Federal Credit Union’s complaint in an opinion confirming that, for purposes of diversity jurisdiction, federally chartered corporations are citizens of the state where they have their principal place of business.
  • United States v. Allen, 864 F.3d 63 (2d Cir. 2017): obtained reversal of convictions and dismissal of all charges against the first defendants charged with LIBOR manipulation.
  • Amgen, Inc. v. Hospira, Inc., 866 F.3d 1355 (2017): successfully argued on behalf of Hospira in a case of first impression before the Federal Circuit involving the statutory framework for biologic drug products.
  • Jiménez v. Palacios, 250 A.3d 814 (Del. Ct. Ch. 2019): successfully won recognition in Delaware Chancery Court of the validity of Interim President Juan Guaidó’s appointments to the Managing Board of PDVSA, thereby securing control of PDVSA’s U.S.-based subsidiary CITGO for the National Assembly of Venezuela. Willkie also successfully defended this groundbreaking Chancery Court decision on appeal in the Delaware Supreme Court, 237 A.3d 68 (2020).
  • In re Kenneth Cole Productions., Inc., 52 N.E.3d 214 (N.Y. 2016): successfully argued before the New York Court of Appeals in the first case under New York law to apply the business judgment rule to a going-private transaction where the transaction was conditioned on the dual protections of a “majority of the minority” voting provision, and the transaction is approved by a committee of independent directors.
  • Kahn v. M & F Worldwide Corp., 88 A.3d 635 (Del. 2014): successfully argued on behalf of a Special Committee of independent directors of M & F Worldwide Corp. at the Delaware Supreme Court, in a decision establishing, as a matter of first impression, that the business judgment rule applies to a going-private transaction where the transaction was conditioned on the dual protections of a “majority of the minority” voting provision, and the transaction is approved by a committee of independent directors.

*Our attorneys litigated these matters prior to joining Willkie.