Our Issues and Appeals Practice pairs our persuasive oral advocacy skills, strategic acumen, clear and concise writing, and innovative approaches to solving business needs with in-depth subject matter knowledge in core practices to consistently deliver outstanding results for our clients.

Renowned for our advocacy skills and for our track record of innovation and versatility, we often represent entire industries in cases where the outcome can change the playing field for businesses in that sector. We are top-notch appellate attorneys who are adept at applying our abilities in each situation that impacts the final disposition of a matter. A Wiley brief, whether filed before the Supreme Court of the United States, a federal circuit court, a state court of appeals, or any other appellate decisionmaker, is thoughtful, crisp, well-written, and persuasive.

Our attorneys also recognize that arguments on appeal are only as powerful as the record before the lower court or federal agency where the matter originated. That is why our attorneys add value early in a representation – making sure that we preserve the most persuasive legal arguments and introduce the most compelling facts in building a record that will stand up on appeal.

What we do.

Decades of experience and hundreds of cases have helped us create an appellate team whose quality and effectiveness are second to none. And as a Washington powerhouse firm, we have impressive capabilities in appeals of federal agency actions, whether in district or appellate courts.

Our attorneys:

  • Successfully litigate against firms many times our size.
  • Are careful thinkers, highly skilled writers, and talented oral advocates who make arguments that are lucid, precise, elegant, and effective.
  • Are trusted advocates for our clients, with a tremendous record in courts at all levels throughout the country.
  • Have clerked for many of the courts before which we’re arguing, with significant experience in the federal appellate court system.

Why we are different.

At the core of our appellate capabilities is a deep bench of former judicial clerks and appellate practitioners. Our litigators include more than 50 attorneys who have served as clerks in federal and state courts across the country and several former Supreme Court clerks, along with a broad range of lawyers with substantial appellate experience. Our group is headed by Claire J. Evans, a former law clerk to Associate Justice Clarence Thomas on the Supreme Court, Judge David B. Sentelle on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Judge Michael Chertoff on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and Judge Jerome B. Simandle on the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, and Thomas M. Johnson, Jr., a former General Counsel for the Federal Communications Commission, Deputy Solicitor General for the State of West Virginia, and law clerk to Judge Jerry E. Smith on the U.S. Court of Appeals or the Fifth Circuit.

One of our team’s differentiators is that our lawyers also add significant value to a wide range of matters at the outset, before an issue winds its way to appeal. By using our appellate knowledge strategically, we can help ensure that the appeal of a case is authoritative and convincing. For example, we:

  • Draft comments before federal agencies that preserve the constitutional, statutory, and record-based (Administrative Procedure Act) arguments that will maximize the chance of success at the agency level and set the stage for a persuasive appeal.
  • Work with trial teams in highly complex matters to identify, formulate, research, and brief legal arguments to shape and prepare them for appeal.
  • Develop novel, cutting-edge theories for clients who anticipate high-stakes litigation, well before actual litigation begins.
  • Are frequently called in to review, edit, and augment appellate briefs written by attorneys outside of the firm to add our own perspective and substantive expertise.
  • Utilize our appellate capabilities in nontraditional, but highly effective, ways.

Our appellate team has an unmatched track record of combining subject matter and appellate expertise, drawing on the strength of our renowned International Trade, Insurance, Government Contracts, Election Law, Telecommunications, Media & Technology, and other practices, depending on the case. Our “elite cadre of appellate lawyers” (Legal Times) is frequently called upon for “bet the company case[s]” or to reverse a lower court, regulatory, or legislative defeat, as we have done many times. The group often takes the lead for an entire industry on a critical issue in litigation across the country. Wiley’s Appellate Practice also has extensive experience acting as a “private solicitor general” for its clients, moving issues across forums and finding the correct venue and timing for victory.

Effective appellate advocacy can make or break a “bet the company” issue for our clients. Described by The Legal 500 US as “hugely effective,” our team works to ensure that when it really counts, our clients’ potential is fully realized.


Claire J. Evans

Thomas M. Johnson, Jr.

Judicial Clerkships

Judical Clerkships

At the core of Wiley's litigation capabilities is our experience. Our litigators include Supreme Court of the United States clerks and more than 50 attorneys who have served as clerks in federal and state courts across the country. A list of their clerkships follows. For more information on individual attorneys and our litigation teams, call us at 202.719.7000.

Supreme Court of the United States

Claire J. EvansHonorable Clarence Thomas (2008-2009)
Bert W. ReinHonorable John M. Harlan (1966)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Gary P. SeligmanHonorable Ellsworth A. Van Graafeiland (2000-2001)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

Claire J. EvansHonorable Michael Chertoff (2004-2005)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

Richard A. SimpsonHonorable John D. Butzner, Jr. (1977-1978)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

Megan L. BrownHonorable E. Grady Jolly (2002-2003)
John E. HowellHonorable E. Grady Jolly (2007-2008)
Thomas M. Johnson, Jr.Honorable Jerry E. Smith (2005-2006)
Sara Beth WatsonHonorable Will Garwood (1985-1986)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

Krystal B. SwendsboeHonorable Alice M. Batchelder (2016-2017)
Roderick L. ThomasHonorable Albert J. Engel, Chief Judge (1989-1990)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

Daniel T. ParkHonorable Michael B. Brennan (2022-2023)
Michael J. Showalter

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit

Joel S. NoletteHonorable Raymond W. Gruender (2019-2021)
Enbar ToledanoHonorable Kermit E. Bye (2012-2013)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

William K. Lane IIIHonorable Diarmuid F. O'Scannlain (2015-2016)
Tatiana SainatiHonorable M. Margaret McKeown (2015-2016)
Wesley E. WeeksHonorable Andrew J. Kleinfeld (2013-2014)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

William TurnerHonorable Barbara Lagoa (2020-2021)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

Lukman AzeezHonorable Evan J. Wallach (2014-2016)
Scott M. McCalebHonorable Haldane Robert Mayer (1997-1998)
Mary SylviaHonorable Raymond C. Clevenger III (1995)
Brian WalshHonorable Daniel M. Friedman (2006-2007)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit

Jeremy J. BroggiHonorable Gregory G. Katsas (2018)
Claire J. EvansHonorable David B. Sentelle (2007-2008)
Elizabeth FisherHonorable David B. Sentelle (2019-2020)
William K. Lane IIIHonorable Gregory G. Katsas (2018)
Stephen J. ObermeierHonorable Karen LeCraft Henderson (2006-2007)
David H. TopolHonorable A. Raymond Randolph (1992-1993)

U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona

Duane C. PozzaHonorable Roslyn O. Silver (2002-2003)
William TurnerHonorable Michael T. Liburdi (2019-2020)

U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia

Jeremy J. BroggiHonorable Richard J. Leon (2016-2017)
Rebecca J. FiebigHonorable John M. Facciola (2008-2009)
Kevin B. MuhlendorfHonorable John M. Facciola (1999-2000)
Joel S. NoletteHonorable Timothy J. Kelly (2021-2022)
Michael J. ShowalterHonorable Dabney L. Friederich (2018)

U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware

Sarah E. SimonettiHonorable Christopher J. Burke (2022-2023)

U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland

Kimberly A. CereijoHonorable Deborah K. Chasanow (2005-2006)
Ashley E. EilerHonorable Deborah K. Chasanow (2012-2013)
Eve Klindera ReedHonorable Marvin J. Garbis (1999-2000)

U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey

Claire J. EvansHonorable Jerome B. Simandle (2002-2004)

U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina

Antonio J. ReynoldsHonorable Margaret B. Seymour

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania

J. Ryan FrazeeHonorable Edward G. Smith (2016)
Frank ScadutoHonorable Cynthia M. Rufe

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia

Attison L. Barnes, IIIHonorable W. Curtis Sewell (1989-1990)
Leah C. DeskinsHonorable M. Hannad Lauck (2021-2023)
Rebecca L. SaittaHonorable Barry R. Poretz (2003-2004)
Krystal B. SwendsboeHonorable Mark S. Davis (2015-2016)

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois

Philip J. DavisHonorable Bernard M. Decker (1973-1974)
Enbar ToledanoHonorable Edmond E. Chang (2014-2015)

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas

Daniel T. ParkHonorable James Wesley Hendrix (2021-2022)

U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas

Hannah J. MillerHonorable J. Scott Hacker (2019)

U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York

Aldel M. L. BrownHonorable Cecelia G. Morris (2019-2020)

U.S. Court of Federal Claims

Jon W. BurdHonorable Lawrence J. Block (2004-2006)
Kathleen CoopersteinHonorable Charles Lettow (2012-2013)
Tracye Winfrey HowardHonorable Lawrence S. Margolis (2006-2007)
Adrienne J. KosakHonorable Mary Ellen Coster Williams (2014-2015)
Kevin J. MaynardHonorable Lawrence S. Margolis (1996-1997)
Alan H. PriceHonorable Lewis Specter, Senior Judge (1983-1984)

U.S. Court of International Trade

Stephen A. Morrison
Maureen E. ThorsonHonorable Donald C. Pogue (2003-2005)
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