Boies Schiller Flexner LLP
|Headquarters||575 Lexington Avenue|
New York City
|No. of offices||15|
|No. of attorneys||319|
|Major practice areas||Litigation|
|Key people||David Boies (Chairman), Jonathan D. Schiller, & Donald L. Flexner|
|Date founded||May 1997|
|Founder||David Boies, Jonathan D. Schiller|
|Company type||Limited liability partnership|
Boies Schiller Flexner LLP is a national law firm based in New York City. The firm was founded by David Boies and Jonathan D. Schiller in 1997, and in 1999, the founders were joined by Donald L. Flexner, former partner with Crowell & Moring, forming Boies, Schiller & Flexner.
The firm has become known for its involvement in high-profile litigation, having represented the Department of Justice in the antitrust action United States v. Microsoft, as well as Vice President Gore in the Supreme Court case Bush v. Gore. More recently, Boies successfully challenged the constitutionality of California's Proposition 8 in Perry v. Brown, and represented the National Football League in the antitrust litigation initiated by the players' union. The firm has drawn controversy for its aggressive tactics during representation of Harvey Weinstein amidst sexual abuse allegations and the now-defunct blood testing startup Theranos.
Among other high-profile clients, Boies Schiller has long represented film producer Harvey Weinstein, against whom sexual abuse allegations were levied in October 2017. The New Yorker reported in November 2017 that Boies Schiller had, on Weinstein's behalf, directed private intelligence companies, including Black Cube, to spy on and orchestrate smear campaigns against alleged victims of Weinstein's and on reporters who were investigating Weinstein's actions. The New York Times, which was at the same time a target of the reported espionage and a client of Boies Schiller's, considered this "intolerable conduct". The New York Times announced a few days later it had "terminated its relationship" with Boies' firm.
Boies Schiller, and specifically David Boies himself, notably represented Theranos for several years, including against the fraud claims that toppled the blood-testing company. In Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup by Wall Street Journal investigative reporter John Carreyrou, the firm is described as protecting the startup using surveillance of witnesses and journalists, weaponized use of non-disclosure agreements and affidavits, intimidation tactics, and other heavy-handed practices. Boies Schiller is portrayed by Carreyrou as acting as an extension of Theranos, including the use of the law firm's New York offices for hosting promotional meetings such as a faked blood test administered to Fortune writer Roger Parloff. According to Carreyrou, the firm agreed to be paid in Theranos stock, and Boies himself served on the Theranos board of directors, raising questions about conflicts of interest. Boies Schiller ended its representation of Theranos in November 2016 due to disagreements about legal strategy. Former Theranos general counsel Heather King was hired back by Boies Schiller after having served as the general counsel at Theranos. King had previously been a lawyer at Boies Schiller during its representation of Theranos, and she, David Boies, and lawyer Michael Brille featured prominently in Bad Blood.
The firm also represents Amazon in corporate matters, and Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos personally retained attorneys from Boies Schiller as part of his crisis-management team in the wake of Bezos's claims of extortion by AMI.
According to the Center for Responsive Politics, Boies Schiller was one of the top law firms contributing to federal candidates during the 2012 election cycle, donating $1.92 million, 90% to Democrats. By comparison, during that same period Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld donated $2.56 million, 66% to Democrats, while oil conglomerate ExxonMobil donated $2.66 million, 88% to Republicans. Since 2000, Boies Schiller has contributed almost $8.2 million to federal campaigns.
Notable lawyers and alumni
- David Boies, chairman of the firm, is a former partner.
- Kirsten Gillibrand, U.S. Senator from New York, is a former partner.
- Tanya S. Chutkan, a United States District Judge for the District of Columbia, is a former partner of the firm's Washington, D.C. office.
- Susan Estrich, a partner, was the first female president of the Harvard Law Review.
- Hampton Dellinger, a partner, was formerly North Carolina's Deputy Attorney General.
- Ann O'Leary, the chief of staff to California Governor Gavin Newsom and former co-executive director of the Clinton-Kaine Transition Team, is a former partner.
- Stephen N. Zack, a partner, was president of the American Bar Association from 2010 to 2011.
- Elizabeth Wurtzel, a writer and journalist, is a former associate.
- Michael Brille, the current general counsel of Boies Schiller, featured prominently in Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup, a book by Wall Street Journal investigative reporter John Carreyrou.
- Heather King, a partner at Boies Schiller, was formerly general counsel at now-defunct blood testing startup Theranos, and she also featured prominently in Bad Blood. King was previously a lawyer at Boies Schiller, and before that she served as a senior advisor for Senator Hillary Clinton.
- Battista, Judy (2011-04-03). "Boies, Star Lawyer, Represents N.F.L. in Lockout Hearing". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2016-10-05.
- Rhode, Deborah L. (9 November 2017). "Opinion | David Boies's Egregious Involvement With Harvey Weinstein". The New York Times.
- Rubino, Kathryn. "David Boies Takes Responsibility For Enabling Harvey Weinstein". Above the Law.
- Solomon, Steven Davidoff (2 February 2016). "David Boies's Dual Roles at Theranos Set Up Conflict". The New York Times.
- May 31, Ben Hancock; PM, Ben Hancock. "In New Theranos Book, Boies Schiller Doesn't Come Off So Great". The Recorder.
- Contract signed on July 11, 2017, by law firm Boies, Schiller & Flexner L.L.P. with Black Cube to stop the publication of sexual-misconduct allegations against Harvey Weinstein, The New Yorker, November 2017.
- Farrow, Ronan (6 November 2017). "Harvey Weinstein's Army of Spies". The New Yorker. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
- Rutenberg, Jim; Weise, Karen; Rashbaum, William K. "Jeff Bezos' Extortion Claim Said to Be Under Review by Prosecutors". The New York Times. Retrieved 9 February 2019.
- Rutenberg, Jim (7 November 2017). "Report Details Weinstein's Covert Attempt to Halt Publication of Accusations". The New York Times. Retrieved 7 November 2017.
- Shapiro, Rebecca (8 November 2017). "New York Times Fires David Boies' Law Firm Over 'Reprehensible' Work For Weinstein". Retrieved 12 March 2019 – via Huff Post.
- McDermid, Riley (21 November 2016). "Litigator David Boies parts ways with Theranos after disagreement over legal strategy". San Francisco Business Times. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
- Carreyrou, John (20 November 2016). "Theranos and David Boies Cut Legal Ties". Wall Street Journal.
- "Bloomberg: Heather King". www.bloomberg.com. Bloomberg.
- Ho, Catherine (5 December 2014). "Boies Schiller maintains unusual corporate culture, including the way it pays associates". The Washington Post. Retrieved 12 March 2019.
- "Lawyers & Lobbyists: Top Contributors to Federal Candidates, Parties, and Outside Groups". OpenSecrets.org. Center for Responsive Politics.
- "Energy/Natural Resources: Top Contributors to Federal Candidates, Parties, and Outside Groups". OpenSecrets.org. Center for Responsive Politics. Retrieved 9 June 2016.
- "Organizations: Boies, Schiller & Flexner". OpenSecrets.org. Center for Responsive Politics. Retrieved 27 December 2019.
- "Hampton Dellinger". Boies Schiller Flexner LLP. Retrieved 12 March 2019.