Commercial Litigation

When company resources and reputations are at stake, clients count on McGuireWoods for help unraveling even the most complex financial structures, strategic transactions and business relationships. At 250 lawyers strong – many of them first-chair trial attorneys – our commercial litigation team has the bench strength to litigate and defend our clients’ interests in domestic and cross-border commercial matters in courtrooms and tribunals around the world. We bring innovation and a relentlessly business-minded focus in providing cost-effective, efficient solutions that further our clients’ business goals.

We represent the full range of business clients − from emerging companies to multinational Fortune 100 corporations − operating in virtually every sector of the global economy. We provide counsel on all types of business disputes, and have developed particular strengths in handling complex commercial litigation, financial services litigation, insurance coverage litigation, and securities litigation.

Even in a corporate environment where the pool for outside counsel work is shrinking and fewer firms are trusted to handle bet-the-company litigation, McGuireWoods’ prominence continues to grow. Our commercial litigators garner respect from high-level legal decision-makers at some of the most-respected companies, winning numerous commendations. Prestigious independent ratings publications such as Chambers USA, Chambers Global, Legal 500 US and U.S. News-Best Lawyers recognize our practice and individual lawyers among the best for business matters.

The bottom line for us, however, is individualized client service – advocating our clients’ interests aggressively yet flexibly, pursuing the strategy that best aligns with their business priorities. Our litigation management approach is based on a simple principle: We help clients achieve their business goals − through counseling, alternative dispute resolution and negotiated settlements, or fully dedicated trial teams to provide aggressive, creative representation before judges, juries and administrative panels. To address complex, sector-specific issues, we quickly assemble and deploy multidisciplinary teams from appropriate firm practice and industry groups.

Litigation is a data-driven and resource-intense effort. We use business best practices such as process reengineering to constantly improve our services while minimizing costs and turnaround time. To effectively handle high-volume, multijurisdictional litigation, we have implemented an array of litigation support technologies such as secured extranets, document-management databases, national document discovery management expertise, and advanced deposition and trial support software.

Effective litigation strategies can help improve a company’s bottom line, but we recognize that resources allocated to dispute resolution are finite. Drawing on our long history of developing and managing litigation budgets, we work cooperatively with in-house counsel and senior executives to ensure that litigation planning and projected expenses are closely aligned with our clients’ objectives and internal structures. Regular reporting and open lines of communication ensure that our clients have a clear view of the status and critical developments in their disputes at every step. We also work to identify and forecast trends so that we can work with clients to avoid risk and potential litigation.



    Colonial Williamsburg Foundation Wins Summary Judgment in Gluten Discrimination Suit

    Representation of Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in a gluten discrimination case that generated national media attention. A Norfolk federal court granted summary judgment on the grounds that CWF was not required to modify its “no outside food” policy when a patron wanted to consume his own food inside the establishment. The court found that CWF provides adequate alternatives, including gluten-free meals, for customers with special dietary needs.


    $40 billion in damages, countless depositions and documents in shareholders’ class action

    Representation of a large international bank headquartered in Canada in litigation related to the Enron scandal.


    One of the world’s leading, international commodities trading and logistics companies

    Defense of one of the world’s leading, international commodities trading and logistics companies in a suit which claimed our client breached a partnership agreement pertaining to supplying petroleum products. We moved to dismiss the action and it was granted by the court based on the ground of improper venue. This matter is currently on appeal.


    Secured Fourth Circuit win for one of the largest producers and transporters of energy in the U.S.

    Virginia Elec. & Power Co. v. Bransen Energy, Inc., 850 F.3d 645 (4th Cir. 2017). The Fourth Circuit granted McGuireWoods a complete appellate victory—affirming a combined judgment amount of approximately $23 million—in a contract dispute that involved a complex set of interrelated coal supply and services agreements related Dominion's order of 600,000 tons of a specific coal product, which the seller fulfilled with different products that were unusable for Dominion's intended purpose.


    Secured reversal of key lower court ruling in recouping cleanup costs

    Asarco, LLC v. Noranda Mining, Inc., 844 F.3d 1201 (10th Cir. 2017). McGuireWoods obtained reversal of summary judgment in a case apportioning environmental liability under CERCLA.  This major victory re-opened the door for Asarco to seek contribution in numerous other cases as well because it rejected judicial estoppel of such claims based on Asarco’s bankruptcy proceedings.

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