• District of Columbia
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • Virginia


  • American Bar Association
  • Bar Association of the District of Columbia
  • Virginia Bar Association


  • George Mason University School of Law, JD
  • George Mason University, BS
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Patrick O. Cavanaugh

Partner & Chief Operating Officer

Washington, DC v. +1.202.772.5995 f. +1.202.772.5996
Philadelphia, PA v. +1.215.569.5577 f. +1.215.832.5577

Patrick Cavanaugh has more than 30 years of experience as a civil litigator and environmental lawyer, beginning his career as a trial attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice, Torts Branch, Civil Division.  While at the Justice Department, Mr. Cavanaugh worked on the Agent Orange and Radiation Litigation Trial Teams. He has litigated a number of toxic tort cases since becoming a private practitioner in the mid-1980s. Mr. Cavanaugh’s current practice focuses primarily in areas of civil disputes, environmental counseling and litigation, internal investigations, and product liability claims. Specifically, he represents a wide range of clients in areas such as:

  • litigation of civil and commercial claims
  • defense of product liability claims
  • defense of cost recovery and contribution claims filed under the federal Superfund statute
  • defense of “toxic tort” claims alleging personal injury and property damage
  • environmental compliance and “due diligence” counseling in connection with transactions involving contaminated properties
  • defense of False Claims Act cases and government suspension and debarment proceedings
  • defense of claims predicated upon violations of permits or regulatory provisions of the Clean Water Act and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act ("RCRA")

Mr. Cavanaugh is the chief operating officer of Blank Rome. Before joining the Firm via a merger in 2003, he was the managing director of Dyer Ellis & Joseph, P.C., and the head of that firm’s environmental practice. 

Mr. Cavanaugh is a past editor-in-chief of the ABA publication Trends and a ten-year member of NR&E magazine

Mr. Cavanaugh maintains an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell, and is a member of the District of Columbia and Virginia bars.


  • Defense of claims against defunct railroad company alleging property damages as a result of PCB contamination.
  • Obtained injunction against Virginia Department of Environmental Quality revoking landfill operating permit and related penalties.
  • Ongoing defense of county government concerning cleanup requirements for area groundwater (BCEE) contamination affecting public water supplies.
  • Defense of common law fraud and securities claims against investment group and security company arising out of purchase-and-sales transaction.
  • Prosecution of civil rights/discrimination action involving putative sale and divestiture of various gasoline service stations in Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area.
  • Investigation of fraud and “kick-back” schemes for international maritime company, and related efforts to obtain civil restitution.
  • Series of internal investigations concerning alleged civil and criminal regulatory violations.