John Moran is a member of the firm’s nationally recognized Government Investigations & White Collar Litigation department. A former senior official at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the White House and an experienced litigator and counselor, John draws on his broad experience from private practice and government service to advise and represent clients in government enforcement, congressional investigations, high-stakes civil disputes, and regulatory litigation. He also serves as co-chair of the firm’s congressional investigations practice, representing both companies and individuals in congressional investigations and hearings and is a member of the firm’s Appeals & Issues group.
John represents clients before state and federal courts at the trial and appellate levels, including before the U.S. Supreme Court. Among other things, he has defended clients in class actions, False Claims Act suits, trade-secret litigation, confidential arbitration, and litigation that required coordination of numerous cases in different jurisdictions. John has experience representing plaintiffs and petitioners as well, including seeking emergency or other injunctive relief to protect clients’ interests and challenging agency action under the Administrative Procedure Act.
John served in senior policy and operational roles at the DOJ, including as Chief of Staff to the Deputy Attorney General (and Acting Attorney General) and as Deputy Chief of Staff to the Attorney General. In those roles, he advised on the most important legal and policy issues facing the Department, including in civil, criminal, and national-security matters. John also previously served as Associate Counsel to the President in the Office of White House Counsel, where he advised the President and White House staff on legal issues and judicial nominations. In that role, John coordinated with the DOJ on litigation involving the White House and worked with policy officials and attorneys across the Executive Branch on high-priority administrative actions—particularly, at the U.S. Department of Interior, U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the Council on Environmental Quality.
John also served as a law clerk to the Honorable Antonin Scalia, Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, and to the Honorable Jeffrey S. Sutton of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
- Represented companies in responding to Civil Investigative Demands from DOJ regarding use of funds from COVID relief programs.
- Represented national bank in protecting confidentiality of records produced to federal Inspector General in connection with investigation of a third party.
- Represented former federal official in connection with Inspector General ethics investigation.
- Represented multinational company in rare DOJ direct action under the False Claims Act over material manufactured from client’s product which was purchased by state and local law enforcement with federal subsidies.
- Represented former senior government official in responding to House committee subpoena for documents and testimony.
- Represented individual in responding to House committee request for testimony.
- Represented company in responding to Senate committee subpoena for documents as part of multi-year investigation.
High-Stakes Civil Disputes
- Represented national companies in defending against claims of racial discrimination in contracting under 42 U.S.C. § 1981 relating to cable channel carriage and television advertising.
- Represented national bank in defending against class action challenging the foreign exchange fees for overseas transactions on bank-issued credit and debit cards.
- Represented national accounting firm in defending a securities class action alleging fraud by accounting firm’s audit client.
- Represented multinational company in defending an $80 million trade-secret action against client and its employee over a supply contract for a major U.S. military contract brought by the employee’s former employer.
- Represented international company in defending against RICO claims brought by the Republic of Iraq over alleged collusion with Saddam Hussein to divert funds from the UN’s Oil-for-Food Program.
- Represented national company in post-trial briefing and a successful appeal, which reversed a $178 million jury verdict in a personal-injury tort action.
- Represented major broadcasting company in challenging FCC common-ownership limitations for broadcast television stations to stations.
- Represented international industry group in challenging FAA implementation of federal budget sequestration.
- Advised numerous clients in preparing for litigation under the Administrative Procedure Act as part of broader response to agency enforcement or rulemaking.
- Appeals & Issues
- Campaign Finance Investigations and Enforcement
- Commercial Litigation
- Congressional Investigations
- Crisis Management & Incident Response
- Energy Law
- Energy Litigation
- Environmental Enforcement & Regulatory Counseling
- False Claims Act Investigations, Litigation and Enforcement
- Government Investigations & White Collar Litigation
- Law Enforcement Policy and Practice Reviews
- Political Investigations Litigation and Enforcement
- Trade Secrets
University of Virginia School of LawJD
Order of the Coif, Articles Development Editor, Virginia Law Review2010
- University of VirginiaBA2007
Selected for inclusion in “Legal 500 United States,” Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense, 2021, 2022, 2023
- Author, SBA Issues Interim Guidance After Ultima Decision Finds 8(a) Program Violates Equal Protection, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, September 29, 2023
- Author, U.S. Supreme Court SFFA College Affirmative Action Ruling: Implications for Corporate DEI, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, July 5, 2023
- Author, End of an Era: White House Ends Many Federal COVID-19 Vaccine Requirements, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, May 3, 2023
- Author, Education Department Delays Sept. 1 Effective Date of Dear Colleague Letter on Third-Party Servicers, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, April 12, 2023
- Author, U.S. Department of Education Launches Secret Shoppers Program to Investigate Colleges and Universities, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, March 16, 2023
- Author, DOJ Announces Program Incentivizing Clawbacks of Compensation, Subject to Inquiry, March 6, 2023
- Author, Education Department to Hold Owners, Individuals, Board Members Liable for Higher Education Institutions, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, March 2, 2023
- Author, Department of Education Guidance Expands Possible Liability for Private Companies That Contract With Higher Education Institutions, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, February 21, 2023
- Author, Supreme Court to Revisit De Minimis Cost Test for Religious Accommodations Under Title VII, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, January 18, 2023
- Author, Government Contractor Vaccine Mandate Remains Paused, Pending Guidance, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, October 21, 2022
- Author, Department of Commerce Issues Final Rule Imposing Tariff Moratorium for Solar Panels, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, September 16, 2022
- Author, New DOJ Guidance on Corporate Criminal Enforcement, Subject to Inquiry, September 16, 2022
- Author, Eleventh Circuit Narrows Scope of Contractor Vaccine Mandate Injunction, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, August 28, 2022
- Author, Supreme Court Signals Interest in Clarifying Pleading Requirements in False Claims Act Suits, The FCA Insider, June 9, 2022
- Author, Supreme Court Signals Support for Broad Ministerial Exception in Education, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, March 15, 2022
- Author, Decision on Race-Based Admissions in K-12 May Serve as National Guide, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, March 4, 2022
- Author, Mandatory Vaccination Coverage Expanded in Practice for All Federal Contractors and Subcontractors, McGuireWoods Legal Alert, October 18, 2021
- Author, U.S. Supreme Court Declines to Clarify False Claims Act Falsity Standard, Subject to Inquiry, March 8, 2021
- District of Columbia
- U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit
- Panelist, Government Regulatory and Enforcement Outlook 2022, March 16 & 17, 2022
- Speaker, COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Mandates for Higher Education Institutions, December 8, 2021
- Speakers, Investigations and Crisis Management for Educational Institutions, November 4, 2021
- Hon. Antonin Scalia, U.S. Supreme Court, 2010-2012
- Hon. Jeffrey S. Sutton, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit, 2010-2011