Expertise & Experience

At A Glance

300+

Matters Litigated

2

Former General Counsels

>50%

Women/ Diversity

1/3

Veterans

47

Foreign Governments Navigated

Practices

Security Clearance Overseas Contracting
Compliance Offsets
Host Country Relations Export Controls
Government Relations IP & Technical Data Rights
Network of Counsel FMS/FMF
Legal Risk Management eDiscovery

Representative Engagements

Defeated an Agency’s Improper Use of “Low Price, Technically Acceptable”

When one agency sought to use the “low-price, technically-acceptable” method for procuring $2 billion in complex consulting services, we protested the lack of specificity concerning technical acceptability and price commitments as fundamentally unreasonable, convincing the agency to abandon the solicitation as written.

Successfully Reversed an Award Decision and Then Defended Agency’s Award to Our Client

We successfully challenged the agency award of a contract to assist the Government of Mexico in reforming its justice system, obtaining corrective action that involved new final proposal revisions. When our client won the second round award, we successfully defended a challenge by the prior awardee and preserved the award to our client.

Multiple Simultaneous Investigations and Public Hearings

Successfully handled seven simultaneous investigations by the Justice Department, two inspectors general, two congressional committees, and one foreign government for a contractor building a U.S. embassy in a politically-charged environment. We debunked nearly all of the allegations, settled outstanding areas of contention, and helped repair the public reputation by developing a series of positive articles in the Washington Post and Wall Street Journal.

Secured Jury Verdict for Battlefield Contractor

Represented a "battlefield" contractor in qui tam suit alleging fraud in performance of security detail contracts; majority of allegations dismissed on summary judgement and jury returned verdict for defendant on all remaining claims.

Won Fourth Circuit Appeal Dismissing FCA Case

Represented a foreign construction company, the prime contractor for the building of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, in a qui tam suit alleging fraud in connection with the performance of the contract; successfully argued dismissal of the suit at the summary judgment stage and affirmance of the dismissal by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Near-Total Recovery of $90 Million Iraq-Related Claim for Fortune 50 Contractor

Lead counsel for a Fortune 50 contractor in $90 million claim against the government, settling the case at full value after extensive negotiations with USAID and the National Security Council.

Persuaded Agency to Drop Espionage Case

Represented Fortune 100 defense contractor in criminal investigation relating to alleged violations of espionage statutes; successfully convinced government to close investigation without any charges.

Managed Multiple, Parallel Investigations for Embassy Contractor

Represented an overseas U.S. Department of State prime contractor in connection with parallel criminal, civil and congressional investigations relating to alleged kickbacks, fraudulent services and human trafficking in connection with over one billion dollars in government contracts; successfully avoided criminal charges and secured dismissals of civil FCA case and human trafficking case.

Helped Large Defense Contractor Avoid Suspension

When a top defense contractor improperly transferred sensitive technologies to China, our team successfully obtained an affirmative determination by its military customers (Army, Navy, Air Force, and Defense Logistics Agency) that it was “presently responsible”, allowing it to continue to receive federal contract awards.

Security Cooperation-Related Legislation

Our professionals played lead roles in the drafting and review of all Security Cooperation-related legislation in the annual National Defense Authorization Acts, Department of Defense Appropriations Acts, and Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Acts from Fiscal Year 2007 through Fiscal Year 2012 and much of that legislation from Fiscal Years 2013 through 2015. They worked in connection with the Senate and House Armed Services Committees, Defense Appropriations Subcommittees, Intelligence Committees, Foreign Relations Appropriations Subcommittees, as well as the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee in connection with related activities.

Export Control Reform

A Nichols Liu attorney was a legal advisor to the DoD Export Control Reform Working Group, and advised on a number of matters that eventually resulted in the complete revision of the U.S. Munitions List (USML) of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) coupled with the transfer of many items from the USML to the Commerce Control List “600 Series.”

Defense Trade Cooperation Treaties

A Nichols Liu attorney was DoD counsel on the negotiation of the Defense Trade Cooperation Treaties with the United Kingdom and Australia.

Navigated Back-to-Back Disputes Arising from Cuban Imprisonment of Contractor

When a subcontractor was arrested in Cuba for carrying out a U.S. Government program there, the family filed a lawsuit against our client, the prime contractor, and the agency in tort. We developed a creative solution for the prime contractor to discretely settle the lawsuit and pass through costs to the agency, minimizing the publicity and politically-charged atmosphere surrounding the case.

Obtained Dismissal of Suit Following Six-Year Investigation

Represented a Medicare Carrier in a six-year federal investigation prompted by a qui tam suit alleging fraud in connection with the processing of claims; successfully obtained dismissal of suit without unsealing.

Negotiated Resolution to FCA and Suspension and Debarment Case

Represented munitions manufacturer in False Claims Act suit relating to alleged product substitution; negotiated favorable settlement and avoided suspension and debarment.

Secured Dismissal of Qui Tam Suit Before Trial

Represented a munitions manufacturer in a qui tam suit alleging defective products due to product substitution and conformance with contractual specifications; secured dismissal of the suit with prejudice before trial.

Represented Defense Contractor in FMS FCA Case

Represented major defense contractor in False Claims Act litigation concerning alleged conspiracy in connection with alleged misuse of U.S. aid by a former Israeli Air Force officer.

Successfully Claimed Litigation Costs

Resolved tort claims arising from the incarceration of U.S. contractor for espionage by negotiating a creative settlement of the tort suit, converting that tort settlement into a contract claim by the prime contractor, and successfully negotiating payment to fully compensate the subcontractor while making the prime contractor nearly whole.

Settled Series of Claims Using Alternative Fee Arrangement

Lead counsel for a Middle East contractor negotiating multiple outstanding claims against the Army Corps of Engineers for construction projects in Afghanistan. Negotiated a grand bargain to resolve all claims, and received compensation based on a percentage of the recovery.

Managed Criminal and Civil Cases to Avoid All Liability

Represented a major food supplier in parallel criminal and civil investigations relating to federal Prime Vendor contracts; successfully avoided criminal charges and civil liability.

Resolved Kickback Case with No Charges

Represented major advertising agency in internal investigation relating to possible kickbacks in connection with a federal contract and represented client in voluntary disclosure to agency; successfully concluded without criminal, civil or administrative charges.

Disclosed and Resolved Accounting Fraud

Represented an NGO in internal investigation relating to alleged accounting fraud, and made successful disclosure to and resolution with agency.

Resolved Defective Pricing Claim for Top 100 Defense Contractor

Represented Fortune 100 defense contractor in connection with OIG investigation into issues relating to defective pricing and false claims; successfully avoided civil, criminal or administrative actions.

Wrote Major Publications on Suspension and Debarment

Our team has authored portions of the American Bar Association’s "The Practitioner's Guide to Suspension and Debarment" and wrote the Briefing Paper “Contractor Responsibility: Toward An Integrated Approach To Legal Risk Management.”

Creative Solutions When an Agency Cuts Off All Funding

When a voluntary disclosure led to a suspension and pushed the entity to the brink of shuttering its doors, we successfully negotiated with the suspending agency to transfer nearly all of the programs, assets, and employees to another not-for-profit and settle the False Claims Act investigation.

Successfully Defended $1 Billion Award for Embassy Services

Defending our client’s award from challenges by three competitors, we persuaded the agency to override the automatic stay of contract performance, and then successfully defended the override before the U.S. Court of Federal Claims and prevailed on the merits.

Arms Trade Treaty

Our professionals were major contributors to the U.S. position during the negotiation of the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty. In particular, they provided support to the legal negotiating team to ensure that the agreed text would not impose additional burdens upon the United States and would not impinge upon Second Amendment rights, as the United States has the “gold standard” with regard to export control systems.