Debevoise & Plimpton


Head Office Address:
919 Third Avenue
New York, NY 10022
United States

Telephone:+1 212 909 6000
Fax:+1 212 909 6836

Regularly hailed as one of the strongest litigation teams in the industry, the Debevoise litigation practice has been described by The American Lawyer as akin to “the Army Rangers—a small but elite group that works seamlessly and handles the most challenging cases,” consistently delivering outstanding results for its clients.

Recent matters include:

  • Represented Tethyan Copper Company Pty Limited and won a historic $6 billion ICSID arbitration award
  • Represented the Board of CBS Corporation in an investigation of sexual harassment allegations against the CEO and senior personnel
  • Reached a resolution with the DOJ and EPA for Toyota’s emissions reporting practices without any criminal charges being filed
  • Represented in a Supreme Court case where the Court ruled 8-1 that’s eponymous domain name is not generic and could register as a trademark
  • Successfully represented Qatar and Qatari entities and individuals in claims arising from measures imposed by UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and Egypt against Qatar, twice prevailing before the International Court of Justice
  • Responded to a significant data breach for Capital One and conducted a related investigation for the bank’s Board
  • Represented Robinhood in SEC and FINRA settlements relating to best execution practices and payment for order flow
  • Secured a $75 million bench trial victory for Resolution Life in the NY Supreme Court stemming from an M&A transaction
  • Secured a $327 million victory in a dispute for D. E. Shaw / TERP in the NY Supreme Court on claims for breach of contract and damages from the sale of First Wind Holdings
  • Won a record-breaking $400 million award on behalf of Perenco Ecuador in the final phase of its 13-year-long dispute against the Republic of Ecuador
  • Won preliminary injunctions on behalf of Diamond Hands Consulting which operates “SatoshiStreetBets” web and social forums, forcing its competitors to stop using the moniker and hand over infringing social media accounts to DHS. 
  • Secured the dismissal of a securities class action on behalf of Tribune Media Company which accused the company of failing to disclose that its proposed merger partner Sinclair Broadcast Group, was playing hardball with regulators regarding their demand that Sinclair divest certain broadcast stations.
  • Helped get relief in federal courts for nearly 40 inmates serving onerous sentences resulting from outdated mandatory sentencing provisions that were disproportionately invoked against Black men
  • Secured a favorable settlement for an Asian biosimilars manufacturer after a full merits hearing in an ICC arbitration governed by Korean law concerning a joint venture agreement with one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. 
  • Secured a favorable settlement for an engineering and commissioning contractor in an AUS$2 billion ICC arbitration concerning the disputed termination of an EPC subcontract to build a captive Combined Cycle power station on an LNG facility.
  • Defended Iraq against investor-state claims brought by Itisaluna resulting in an award 70% of attorney fees and costs; also prevailed in Iraq’s ICSID arbitration against Agility, knocking out claims of $650 million and obtaining an award of costs and interest
  • Protected the World Health Organization’s (WHO) immunity under international and U.S. law in class actions in U.S. court challenging the WHO’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The firm’s litigation practice is led by co-chairs Mary Beth Hogan and Andrew Ceresney (the immediate past Director of Enforcement at the SEC) and features an all-star roster, including former Attorneys General Lord Peter Goldsmith QC and Michael Mukasey and former Chair of the SEC Mary Jo White, who returned to Debevoise in 2017 following her four-year tenure. Ms. White, who previously served as U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York for nine years, is Senior Chair of the firm and leads the Strategic Crisis Response and Solutions Group.

Their team also includes over 15 former Assistant U.S. Attorneys or Department of Justice attorneys, including a former federal district court judge, the former Chief of the Criminal Division of the Southern District of New York, the former Acting Assistant Attorney General for the DOJ Criminal Division, the former Deputy Assistant Attorney General for National Security and three former Unit Chiefs of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement.

The breadth of experience offered by Debevoise in and out of the courtroom sets their litigators apart. They bring personal attention, seasoned judgment, deep industry knowledge, credibility and substantive legal experience to each matter, tailoring advice to clients’ needs and circumstances. They work seamlessly and collaboratively with clients and co-counsel and across practices to achieve the best possible results for our clients.

Based in New York, Washington DC, London, Paris, Frankfurt, Shanghai and Hong Kong, their broadly skilled team of nearly 300 litigators handle domestic and cross-border disputes of every kind and complex matters in courts in the United States, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, France and elsewhere, as well as before arbitration tribunals, agencies and administrative bodies worldwide. They represent clients as plaintiffs and defendants in a wide range of areas, including:

  • Antitrust & Competition
  • Arbitration & International Disputes
  • Bankruptcy
  • Business Integrity
  • Crisis Management
  • Data Strategy & Security
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Insurance Industry Disputes
  • Intellectual Property
  • Internal Investigations
  • Labor & Employment Litigation
  • Product Liability
  • Securities Enforcement
  • Securities Litigation
  • Trial Practice
  • White Collar & Regulatory Defense

Another notable and distinguishing feature of the Debevoise litigation practice is the success of their women partners. Benchmark Litigation has named nine Debevoise women litigation partners among the “Top 250 Women in Litigation”—an exceptional ranking for a firm of its size. Since the inception of Benchmark Litigation’s “Top 250 Women in Litigation” list in 2013, the firm’s partners have been recognized every year for demonstrating its tradition of serving clients at the highest levels and of contributing to the development and advancement of distinguished women leaders.


Updated Aug 2022