Crisis Avoidance & Risk Management

In a crisis situation, our lawyers understand that companies can face difficulties on numerous fronts – government investigations, consumer litigation, employee relations, internal investigations, supplier relations, and public relations difficulties, to name just a few. We are well-equipped to counsel companies and their boards on all of these fronts seamlessly and with the goal of minimal interruption to business operations.

Notable Representations, Key Contacts

Drawing on capabilities from across the Firm, we help clients navigate the immediate issues and develop long-term solutions and exit strategies to complex, multi-faceted legal challenges. In short, we partner with our clients to integrate legal strategy into the wider framework of their current and future business objectives. We are well known for:
  • Our Cross-Practice Capabilities: Drawing on the unique talents of lawyers around the world in our Business Finance & Restructuring, Public Company Advisory Group, White Collar Defense, Regulatory and Investigations, and Product Liability & Mass Torts practices, among others, we offer our clients the "one-stop" service they need to efficiently mobilize in response to a crisis situation.
  • Seamless Coordination of Parallel Litigation and Regulatory Investigations: We regularly manage and coordinate all aspects of legal proceedings arising out of crisis situations, including wide-ranging, multi-regulator investigations, multi-jurisdictional litigation, and sensitive internal reviews and investigations, often simultaneously.
  • Our Experience Representing Major Companies in First-of-their-Kind Crises: We have occupied center stage during some of the most high-profile crises over the last several decades, navigating clients from all over the world through complex regulatory and governmental investigations, internal investigations, and attendant civil litigation. Recently, this has included, among many others:
    • The 2013 Lac Mégantic rail disaster in Canada (on behalf of CIT Group)
    • The 2011 Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan (on behalf of a confidential energy client)
    • The 2010 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill (on behalf of SEACOR Holdings)
    • The Financial Crisis (on behalf of a range of companies, including American International Group, Lehman Brothers, Washington Mutual, and Archstone Smith)
    • The Cleanup Efforts Following the 2001 World Trade Center Terrorist Attacks (on behalf of Bovis Lend Lease)
    • The 1993 World Trade Center Terrorist Bombing (on behalf of The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey)
  • Expert Management of Media Relations and Strategic Communications: Our attorneys have extensive experience coordinating media relations and strategic communications in the aftermath of large-scale crises. We regularly counsel on the legal implications of using public relations firms and managing communication with the media in the wake of a crisis. We also work with our clients to create a culture of brand management with respect to social media and all other forms of corporate communication, with the goal of preventing future crises.

Representative Clients

We have represented a wide range of leading companies in major litigation and crisis situations involving multiple proceedings.

  • American Airlines
  • Anadarko Petroleum Corp.
  • CBS Corp.
  • CIT Group
  • ExxonMobil
  • General Electric
  • Gentiva Health Services
  • Maxim Integrated Technologies
  • Merck & Co., Inc.
  • Ortho-McNeil
  • Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
  • Sanofi
  • SEACOR Holdings
  • Toyobo
  • Washington Mutual

Selected Representations

CIT Group – Lac Mégantic rail disaster in Canada

SEACOR Holdings Inc. – BP Oil Spill Litigation


Thermo King – Mont Blanc Tunnel Fire Disaster


Chr. Hansen, Inc.

Cooper Tire

General Motors

Philip Morris USA


Key Contacts

Ellen J. Odoner

Ellen J. Odoner


New York

Arvin Maskin

Arvin Maskin


New York

Jonathan Polkes

Jonathan D. Polkes


New York

Marcia Goldstein

Marcia L. Goldstein


New York

Shortcut Links

Recent Announcement

Weil is extremely client-service oriented and I would allocate the highest rating possible to them in terms of their proactivity and responsiveness.”

Chambers USA

Weil sponsors an annual Crisis Symposium in its Silicon Valley office, which examines developments in a variety of industries and practices, and offers insights into crisis response best practices.

Guides and Resources, Speaking Engagements

Speaking Engagements