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Willy Jay is a partner in and co-chair of Goodwin Procter’s Appellate Litigation Practice. A former Assistant to the Solicitor General, Mr. Jay has extensive experience with litigation in the U.S. Supreme Court and U.S. Courts of Appeals. He has argued 12 cases before the Supreme Court (with another argument scheduled for December 2014), briefed more than 30 cases on the merits and briefed more than 150 cases at the certiorari stage. He also has significant experience with cases in the Court’s original jurisdiction.

Mr. Jay has handled cases in every federal court of appeals as well. He has personally briefed or argued more than 30 appellate cases, both in private practice and on behalf of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Environment, Criminal and Civil Divisions, and he has participated in numerous appellate matters involving government appeals or amicus participation.

Mr. Jay has particular experience in cases involving federal preemption of state law, intellectual property (including patent, copyright, and trademark law), environmental law, class action practice, and the First Amendment, including those involving campaign finance regulation, election law, and election crimes.

Since joining Goodwin Procter, Mr. Jay has handled complex litigation matters in the Supreme Court; in the First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Eleventh, D.C. and Federal Circuits; in several state appellate courts; and in various trial courts and administrative agencies. His recent significant representations include:

  • Persuading the Supreme Court to grant certiorari in two significant intellectual property cases:

    Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. v. Sandoz, Inc.: The Supreme Court agreed to take up the subject of patent claim construction for the first time in nearly 20 years and hear Teva’s challenge to the Federal Circuit’s longstanding precedent insisting on reviewing factual issues de novo. Mr. Jay was counsel of record on the successful petition for certiorari and the merits briefs and argued the case in October 2014.

    B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Industries, Inc.: This trademark case affects both infringement litigation in district court and litigation before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. The legal issue the Supreme Court will decide is whether one tribunal’s decision on the “likelihood of confusion” between two trademarks is binding in other tribunals as well. Mr. Jay was counsel of record on the successful petition for certiorari and the merits briefs and will argue the case in December 2014.
  • Orally arguing Securities Act claims and securing a victory on behalf of Municipal Mortgage & Equity and several of its former and current officers and directors when the Fourth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of claims that the company made false statements in the registration statement for its 2005 secondary public offering.
  • Successfully defending, in the Fourth Circuit, a complete defense victory at trial in a certified class action under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. Mr. Jay co-authored the successful briefs and argued the appeal. Mr. Jay also co-authored the successful appellate briefs in a companion case (involving another certified class) under the Maryland Finder’s Fee Act, in which the Fourth Circuit also affirmed a complete defense victory.
  • Achieving a victory before the Second Circuit on behalf of the independent trustees of a group of mutual funds. The Second Circuit’s decision vindicated the corporate governance rights of the board of a registered investment company organized as a Massachusetts business trust.
  • Successfully winning rehearing en banc in the First Circuit on behalf of a national bank in a putative nationwide class action, and co-authoring briefs that won a complete victory on rehearing en banc.
  • Persuading the First Circuit to affirm dismissal of an unfair business practices action against a logistics company.

Representing amici curiae in the Supreme Court and courts of appeals, in cases involving securities, antitrust, federal preemption of state law, ERISA, patent law, false advertising, and the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act. Mr. Jay’s amicus clients have included IBM, RichRelevance Inc., the Generic Pharmaceutical Association, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Business Roundtable, the American Council of Life Insurers, the American Bankers Association, the American Library Association and America’s Health Insurance Plans.

As Assistant to the Solicitor General, Mr. Jay received the Attorney General’s Distinguished Service Award for his work on litigation arising from the bankruptcy of Chrysler, as well as a Special Commendation from the DOJ’s Environment and Natural Resources Division for his work on litigation involving oil drilling, invasive species and interstate water rights. In 2014, Mr. Jay was recognized as a “Rising Star” by Law360.

While in law school, Mr. Jay was executive editor of the Harvard Law Review.

Prior to joining Goodwin Procter in 2012, Mr. Jay served for five years as Assistant to the Solicitor General at the U.S. Department of Justice. In that capacity, he handled Supreme Court and appellate matters for a wide variety of federal agencies, including every Cabinet Department and numerous executive and independent agencies. Previously, he was a litigation associate with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher in its Appellate and Constitutional Law Practice Group.