Alston & Bird has one of the most comprehensive and experienced State AG Practice Teams in the country. We have been representing clients in state, federal and joint enforcement actions for decades. Our attorneys have also represented state AGs through their government service as public officials, special assistant attorneys general or attorneys for the AGs themselves. Our team consists of former deputy/assistant state attorneys general, federal prosecutors and government attorneys with experience throughout the U.S. and deep professional relationships with many AGs and their senior staffs. We know how enforcement attorneys and prosecutors think and work to implement a strategy that gives our clients the best chance of reaching a favorable outcome—whether it’s working with an AG’s office on data breach notification issues, assisting clients responding to AG subpoenas related to consumer protection issues (such as unfair and deceptive trade practices), convincing the government to end an investigation or not to intervene on a False Claims Act action, prevailing at trial or reaching the best settlement.
Credentials and Recognition
Our team consists of individuals with experience as former senior state and federal enforcers, including a senior official for California Attorney General Kamala D. Harris; former U.S. attorneys; former senior leadership officials with the U.S. Department of Justice in the Criminal, Environmental and Natural Resources, and Civil Divisions and the offices of the deputy attorney general and associate attorney general; and former federal prosecutors. Our attorneys are also active with state attorneys general through our work with the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) as well as the Republican Attorneys General Association (RAGA), the Democratic Attorneys General Association (DAGA) and the Conference of Western Attorneys General (CWAG). We regularly have attorneys recognized in top-tier rankings by Chambers USA and The Best Lawyers in America for the work we handle for our clients.
Our Representative Experience
We bring a multidisciplinary approach to every engagement we handle, tapping into the breadth of experience throughout our firm, whether within our litigation, corporate, environmental or other practices. Our experience in state AG investigations and enforcement actions crosses industries and state boundaries. We have experience with virtually every state AG office in some capacity and across multiple disciplines, including:
- Consumer fraud and consumer protection – On behalf of a global beverage company, successfully handled investigations by state AGs and the Federal Trade Commission and multiple putative class actions asserting claims under consumer protection statutes.
- Antitrust – Represented a large electronics manufacturer against claims alleging that licensing practices of a patent pool and implementation of standards applicable to the manufacture of DVDs and DVD players violated Sections 1 and 2 of the Sherman Act and California’s Cartwright Act.
- Data privacy and cybersecurity – Defending a major retailer in privacy-related investigations by the state AGs of California, Florida, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Texas along with related class action litigation. We also have substantial experience defending multistate AG investigations into data breaches.
- Health care fraud and state False Claims Acts – Successfully represented the chief medical officer in a state hospital system in a state AG False Claims Act investigation.
- Hospitals and health systems – Successfully obtaining state AG approval of corporate transactions, change of control efforts and other matters on behalf of both for-profit and nonprofit hospital systems.
- Public corruption and government ethics – Representing a key figure in the “Bridgegate” scandal in parallel investigations by the New Jersey Legislative Select Committee on Investigation and U.S. Attorney’s Office District of New Jersey.
- Insurance – Managed a massive internal investigation for a top national insurance carrier in response to various AG and Department of Insurance inquiries in the wake of high-profile claims brought by New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer relating to producer compensation and alleged bid rigging activities.
- Financial services – Represented a leading credit card processor in an investigation by a working group of 26 state AGs arising out of a data breach.
- Securities – Representing clients in securities enforcement actions by state AGs involving a range of issues, such as fraud, insider trading, conflicts of interest, accounting practices and broker-dealer regulations.