WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 4, 2009) — In Arthur Andersen LLP v. Carlisle, No. 08-146, the U.S. Supreme Court today issued a 6-3 ruling in favor of McDermott Will & Emery LLP client Arthur Andersen. In this decision, which reversed a decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, the Supreme Court held that nonparties to an arbitration agreement may enforce state law arbitration rights under the Federal Arbitration Act and that the Sixth Circuit did not lack appellate jurisdiction over Arthur Andersen's appeal of the district court's denial of its motion to stay pending arbitration. The opinion was authored by Justice Scalia, who was joined by Justices Kennedy, Thomas, Ginsburg, Breyer, and Alito. Justice Souter dissented, joined by the Chief Justice and Justice Stevens.
"We are very pleased with the Supreme Court's decision. The Court adopted, without qualification, our arguments as to both appellate jurisdiction and the enforcement rights of nonparties under the Federal Arbitration Act," said M. Miller Baker, the co-head of McDermott's Appellate Practice Group who argued for Arthur Andersen and the other petitioners in this case.
With this case, McDermott has appeared in one or more cases decided on the merits in eight of the nine most recent Supreme Court terms, including the current term.
McDermott's team on this case was led by M. Miller Baker and included partners Jeffrey Stone, Douglas E. Whitney, Paul M. Thompson and Jocelyn D. Francoeur, and associate Jeffrey W. Mikoni. Assistance was also provided by associates Joshua D. Rogaczewski and Rahul Rao.
McDermott's nationally recognized Appellate Practice Group, headed by M. Miller Baker and Rory K. Little, consists of highly experienced lawyers in our U.S. offices who have successfully handled hundreds of appeals. Our group includes more than 20 partners who have successfully argued appeals in the U.S. Supreme Court, the 13 regional circuits of the U.S. courts of appeals and numerous state appellate courts. Members of this group have served as judicial law clerks at the Supreme Court of the United States, the U.S. courts of appeals and U.S. district courts. In addition to representing our own clients in their appeals, lawyers in our group have also been retained to file friend of court briefs in cases of national importance in the Supreme Court of the United States and various other appellate courts.
In 2008, The National Law Journal included our Appellate Practice Group on its "Appellate Hot List" of firms demonstrating "unqualified excellence" in appellate litigation. In addition, Chambers USA - 2008 nationally rated our appellate practice, indicating that our team "demonstrates 'impressive advocacy and full technical understanding' in numerous appeal cases."