Appellate

Overview

Appellate litigation is high-stakes litigation. The bigger the monetary judgment, the more likely it will be appealed. Even without a direct financial impact, the legal precedent set by an appellate court can influence an entity’s or industry’s course for years – or possibly decades. Given the risks involved, it is crucial to hire skilled counsel who are known and trusted by the appellate courts. Not just any lawyer will do. Only select advocates have earned the respect of members of the appellate bench by virtue of their written, oral and strategic thinking abilities.

Those attributes describe Stradley Ronon’s appellate practice attorneys. We have amassed an impressive record in hundreds of appeals before the federal and state courts and administrative agencies. This includes the United States Supreme Court, the United States Courts of Appeals, the Pennsylvania Supreme, Superior and Commonwealth Courts, and other state appellate courts in jurisdictions where we practice. Our abilities in the appellate arena have earned us a reputation as a reliable ally for our clients – and a formidable opponent for their adversaries.

Our impressive record of success leads litigants to seek us out as counsel for their appeals. Our reputation also convinces industry and trade groups to engage us to file “friend of the court” (amicus curiae) briefs with a host of appellate courts across the country. Through these briefs, we give a voice to entire business communities and interest groups on critical issues affecting those segments of our society.

Members of the legal profession hold Stradley Ronon’s appellate attorneys in high regard. They have chosen our attorneys for appellate leadership positions in bar associations and other appellate-related legal bodies. We also often write, speak and comment on appellate matters – both to train other lawyers in the art of appellate advocacy and as a service to inform the public about the appellate courts.

Our Services
We see every case through, from start to finish. Beyond writing briefs and presenting oral arguments in countless appeals, we handle every conceivable facet of appellate practice, including pursuing and opposing:

  • petitions for discretionary review filed with the United States Supreme Court (petitions for writs of certiorari) and state appellate courts of last resort;
  • motions for stays or supersedeas of execution on underlying civil judgments;
  • motions for panel or en banc (full-court) reconsideration and rehearing; and
  • motions for certification of questions for review by an appellate court.

We also have a unique history of handling many cases before the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court – a specialized court with a government-focused jurisdiction. As a result of our many state government-related engagements, we have litigated disputes before that court in almost every conceivable posture, including:

  • original jurisdiction proceedings against Commonwealth officials and entities;
  • appellate jurisdiction matters in cases appealed from Commonwealth agencies;
  • injunction, summary relief and other expedited and unusual procedures involving Commonwealth actors; and
  • cases heard by single judges, three-judge panels and the en banc court.

We take pride in how efficiently we deliver our appellate services as compared to other firms. And we are willing to craft a variety of alternative fee arrangements tailored to our clients’ needs, including the need to control and predict legal spend.

Expand

Results

Results

Representative Matters

  • defeated a $200 million class-wide constitutional challenge to Pennsylvania budget enactments by the Pennsylvania General Assembly appropriating tobacco settlement funds – first by obtaining the Commonwealth Court’s denial of multiple injunction requests, and then by obtaining a unanimous Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision in the client’s favor after televised oral arguments
  • secured victories for several health insurance plans seeking to protect marketplace competition by preventing public disclosure of their proprietary Medicaid payment rate information in Right-to-Know Law disputes before the Commonwealth Court and Pennsylvania Supreme Court
  • prevailed in a series of cases for the Pennsylvania Insurance Department in an insolvent insurance company’s liquidation proceedings, including defeating nearly all of a $12 million claim through a unanimous Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision and a $700,000 state guaranty association claim in a 4-to-3 Commonwealth Court decision
  • protected a patent holder from an award of attorneys’ fees by obtaining a precedent-setting Federal Circuit decision rejecting a fee award when a patent owner sought to defend its intellectual property rights
  • obtained a Third Circuit decision blocking an alleged participant in the Luzerne County, Pennsylvania “Kids for Cash” scandal from obtaining insurance coverage
  • shielded the confidential financial statements, tax returns and other sensitive materials submitted by an agency contractor as part of its bid package by obtaining a precedential Right-to-Know Law decision in the contractor’s favor from the Commonwealth Court
  • secured a precedential Third Circuit decision in an insurance client’s favor that agreed with the client’s position on the meaning and application of a flood insurance policy’s terms and conditions
  • preserved $11 million in public funding awarded to convert a former school building to apartments for lower-income senior citizens by obtaining a Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision awarding zoning to the project after televised arguments
  • achieved a Third Circuit victory for an institution of higher learning after a district court judgment in the client’s favor rejecting claims of age and race discrimination
  • defended against a challenge to a General Assembly statute permitting counties to abolish the office of jury commissioner in expedited election-related proceedings that started before the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court and ended with a Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision in the client’s favor following televised arguments
  • prevailed in a Third Circuit appeal for a surety client that had denied a performance bond claim arising from a substantial public works project
Expand
Back to top