McGuireWoods Honored as a Law360 ‘Automotive Practice Group of the Year’

January 23, 2017

Law360 has named McGuireWoods an “Automotive Practice Group of the Year” for 2016 — one of only two firms to earn the prestigious award. It marks the third year in a row Law360 recognized the firm as a Practice Group of the Year, with past honors going to the firm’s government investigations and white collar litigation and sports practices.

McGuireWoods’ product liability and toxic tort lawyers earned this year’s recognition for their representation of the world’s largest automakers, including Mazda, Hyundai and Ford, in high-stakes litigation. As lead trial counsel to Ford, McGuireWoods has represented the company in U.S. product liability cases for more than three decades and served as Ford’s national counsel in consumer fraud class actions, asbestos litigation and appellate matters.

Recent victories include the Supreme Court of Virginia’s reversal of a $32 million judgment against Mazda, which clarified standards governing expert testimony and provided a framework for the defense of state product liability claims. McGuireWoods won a long-running class action for Ford, in which the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s dismissal of the case because of insufficient evidence that a Windstar minivan axle was defective. And the firm prevailed for Ford in an $11 million post-collision fire case when a Louisiana jury returned a defense verdict rejecting allegations that a 2002 Ford F-150’s brake master cylinder and reservoir assembly were defective.

“We are deeply honored that our clients trust us to defend them in high-stakes litigation,” said Tracy Walker, the firm’s deputy managing partner for litigation. “There is nothing more gratifying than delivering a positive result for a client with whom we have had the privilege of working for years or decades.”

“We have assembled a talented team of litigators who advise clients in trial and appellate matters filed in courts across the country,” said Sam Tarry, chair of the firm’s Product and Consumer Litigation Department. “We are proud that independent organizations such as Law360 have recognized the great work our lawyers do for clients.”

Law360 editors based their selections on the impact of a practice group’s work, considering factors such as high-profile matters, large dollar amounts, and compelling or precedent-setting decisions arising from cases argued.

McGuireWoods’ renowned litigation department is recognized for Products Liability & Mass Torts in “Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business.” In addition, the firm is one of only two honored in all eight practice categories in BTI Litigation Outlook, earning the elite “Powerhouse” ranking for product liability and complex commercial litigation and “Standout” recognition for class actions and torts. In 2016, Law360 also named McGuireWoods a “Litigation Powerhouse.”