State Attorneys General

Overview

As state attorneys general (“AGs”) continue to expand their influential roles in legal and regulatory enforcement and band together into multistate litigation powerhouses, businesses across the spectrum should be prepared to face scrutiny from AG offices.

Blank Rome’s State Attorneys General team combines experienced litigators with industry and subject-matter professionals to provide counsel to clients facing high-level, state government-related investigations and lawsuits across the country. We understand the unique nature of engaging with AG offices: the powers of the bully pulpit; the priorities and motivations of the attorneys; the roles of the media and the political cycle; the intricacies of public records laws and investigatory files; and the complex, overlapping issues of politics, policy, and law. We have been there—on the inside—doing the legal work and advising and working with state AG offices at the highest levels.

With established relationships and regular dialogues with AG offices nationally, our team effectively and efficiently advises companies on the increasingly broad and active pursuit of investigations and lawsuits by AGs. We take a multidisciplinary approach by collaborating with industry and practice groups across our firm, including consumer protection, labor & employment, environmental enforcement, antitrust, and COVID-19-related compliance, as well as government relations professionals in collaboration with our affiliate, Blank Rome Government Relations LLC.

How We Can Help

Our team has helped clients on matters related to:

  • Defense of consumer protection investigations and lawsuits in various industries
  • Defense of COVID-19-related price-gouging investigations
  • Prosecution of state tax appeals defended by AG offices
  • Requests to write off client debt owed to states
  • Requests that AG offices approve state contracts
  • AG control over, and defense of, investigations and lawsuits involving state nonprofits
  • Defense of various criminal matters investigated and brought before state grand juries
  • Investigations into casinos, sports betting, online gaming, and horse racing brought by AGs

Our team is involved at every stage of the investigative process, including:

  • Devising strategy, including outreach to AG offices due to concerns about potential investigations and lawsuits
  • Responding to civil investigative demands (“CIDs”) after a state AG has requested information in connection with an ongoing investigation
  • Defending specific civil and criminal lawsuits brought by a single AG, and national, multistate litigation brought by a group of AGs working together
  • Negotiating settlements, assurances of voluntary compliance (“AVCs”), consent petitions, and plea bargains, leveraging our understanding of state laws and the priorities of AGs and our clients to devise creative, successful outcomes where possible

What Sets Us Apart

  • Our team is led by a former Pennsylvania Executive Deputy Attorney General, who ran the Civil Law Division and oversaw the Civil Litigation, Appellate Litigation, Tax Litigation, Torts Litigation, Legal Review, and Financial Enforcement Sections, and played an instrumental role in the creation and inner workings of the Impact Litigation Section.
  • Members of Blank Rome’s State Attorneys General team have served in senior-level government positions, giving us a unique insider perspective that benefits our clients.
  • We have deep experience in pursuing tax litigation and appellate matters and routinely partner with the firm’s nationally prominent State + Local Tax (“SALT”) team.

Team

Sophia Lee

Sophia Lee

Partner, Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Emeritus