Manatt, Phelps & Phillips

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Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP
Manatt goldBox RGB
Headquarters Flag of the United States.svg Los Angeles
No. of offices 9
No. of attorneys 341
Major practice areas General practice
Revenue Green Arrow Up.svg$308 million (2016)
Date founded 1965
Company type LLP

Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP is a Los Angeles-based law firm of more than 450 attorneys and other professionals founded in 1965. In 2017, Manatt was named to The American Lawyer’s "A-List" ranking of the top 20 law firms in the nation.[1] The firm earned revenues of $308 million in 2016. William T. Quicksilver is the firm's Chief Executive and Managing Partner.


Manatt, Phelps & Phillips was founded by Charles Taylor Manatt, who later became chairman of the Democratic National Committee and U.S. Ambassador to the Dominican Republic, and Thomas Phelps, a banking and finance attorney. Litigation and sports lawyer Alan Rothenberg joined them soon after; Rothenberg remained a named partner in the firm until he moved to Latham & Watkins in 1990.[2] Former U.S. Senator John V. Tunney was a named partner from 1976 until early 1987.[3][4] L. Lee Phillips, an entertainment lawyer, joined the firm in 1977 and became a named partner in 1985.[5][6] Democratic activist Mickey Kantor joined the firm in 1976; he was a named partner from 1991[7] until his departure in 1993 to become United States Trade Representative, and, later, Secretary of Commerce during the Clinton Administration.

Major practice areas[edit]

Notable alumni[edit]

Notable clients[edit]

Pro bono work[edit]

Manatt's pro bono program ranked No. 35 in The American Lawyer’s 2016 Pro Bono Report.[8] The average pro bono hours per Manatt lawyer is 62.8 hours.

Holocaust Survivors Justice Network[edit]

In 2007, Manatt and Bet Tzedek launched a nationwide pro bono program, the Holocaust Survivors Justice Network, to help holocaust survivors.[9] The Network has since assisted thousands of survivors and has grown to be the single largest coordinated pro bono effort in U.S. history. At the height of its activity in 2009, clinics operated in 31 cities across the country with the assistance of more than 100 corporate partners, providing free legal services to survivors seeking German “Ghetto Work” reparations. The Network has been recognized by the American Bar Association, the National Law Journal and the Pro Bono Institute.[10][11][12]

Significant matters[edit]

  • Led the charge on a mandamus action on behalf of 46 affirmative asylum petitioners whose interviews had not been scheduled in accordance with federal regulations, which proved to be a challenging test case since the government adopted its “first-in-first-out” process. Immigration Equality recognized Manatt's work in 2016 with a "Safe Haven" award. [13]
  • Advanced the issue of transgender rights in the immigration law context by persuading a Ninth Circuit panel to grant relief to a transgender Mexican woman in the U.S. With the Public Law Center, Manatt secured a victory in 2015 for transgender immigrants seeking relief from torture when the Ninth Circuit suspended the deportation of a transgender Mexican woman. The opinion in Avendano-Hernandez v. Lynch is far-reaching because it distinguishes gender identity from sexual orientation, identifies the unique vulnerabilities faced by transgender individuals, and recognizes that the Convention Against Torture does not require acquiescence of a higher level of government when low-level public officials commit torture. [14]
  • Affirmed by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in 2014, Manatt represented female high school athletes on a pro bono basis in a Title IX class action against Eastern San Diego County’s Sweetwater Union High School District. This was the first Title IX K-12-level case to ever go to trial, and it is the first case in which a class of high school female athletes has won a summary judgment motion under Title IX on the issue of failure to provide equal participation opportunities to girls.[15]
  • In 2012, Manatt lawyers and staff spent more than 1,300 hours assisting clients of the Inner City Law Center, the only provider of legal services on skid row in downtown Los Angeles. In June 2013, the center presented Manatt and partner Margaret Levy with the Humanitarian Award for their consistent support.[16]
  • In late 2010, Manatt secured a landmark victory on behalf of a pro bono client who was victimized by policies and practices of her high school and its administrative district. The U.S. District Court ruled in favor of client Desiree R., then a 17-year-old high school senior, in a precedent-setting Americans with Disabilities Act case.[17]
  • Manatt secured a victory in an environmental battle to safeguard the rights and quality of life for residents of McCloud, California, against Nestlé Waters North America. In September 2009, Nestlé abandoned its plans to build a million-square-foot bottling plant that was opposed by environmentalists and McCloud residents.[18] Manatt received the National Law Journal’s Pro Bono Award for the second consecutive year in 2010 for its work with McCloud.[19]

Rankings and recognitions[edit]

Manatt is an AmLaw 200 ranked firm, listed at number 106 on the 2017 list.[20] The firm also appears in:

  • Chambers and Partners: 22 firm lawyers and 9 firm practices were ranked for 2017.[21]
  • U.S. News: 9 Tier 1 national rankings and 25 Tier 1 metropolitan designations were received for 2018. The firm was named the “Law Firm of the Year” for Entertainment Law - Music.[22]
  • Best Lawyers in America: 67 Manatt attorneys were named to the guide for 2018. [23]
  • The Legal 500: 9 Manatt practices are ranked in the 2017 edition. The firm's Healthcare group also won the "Healthcare: service providers team of the year" 2015 award from The Legal 500 United States.[24]

Organizations promoting workplace diversity include:

  • Women In Law Empowerment Forum: Manatt has received WILEF's Gold Standard Certificate for seven years.[25]
  • American Lawyer: Manatt ranked 47 out of 200 surveyed U.S. law firms in The American Lawyer’s 2017 Diversity Scorecard.[26]
  • Working Mother named Manatt to its 2017 list of the 50 best law firms for women in the country for the tenth consecutive year.[27]
  • Human Rights Campaign: Manatt earned a perfect score on the HRC's 2018 Corporate Equality Index. [28]

Manatt Health[edit]

Manatt Health is a fully integrated, multi-disciplinary legal, regulatory, advocacy and strategic business advisory division of Manatt. Manatt Health professionals provide counsel on healthcare coverage and access, healthcare information technology, healthcare financing and reimbursement, and healthcare restructuring.

Manatt Health is composed of healthcare consultants, lawyers, project managers, technology strategists, analysts and policy advisors. They frequently publish by-lined articles and speak with media on major health industry issues.[29][30][31][32] Clients include hospitals, payers, physician practices, state policymakers and agencies, foundations, associations, and technology companies.

In November 2011, the group added Joel Ario as a managing director. He is a former director of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services’ Office of Health Insurance Exchange.[33] Other notable professionals include Deborah Bachrach, former director of New York State Medicaid and Deputy Commissioner of Health;[34] Cindy Mann, former Deputy Administrator and Director of the U.S. Center for Medicaid and CHIP Services; and Jonah P.B. Frohlich, California’s Former Deputy Secretary of Health Information Technology.[35]

Recent Work[edit]

  • For the Association of American Medical Colleges, Manatt Health advised on and coauthored the landmark 2014 report "Advancing the Academic Health System for the Future," which articulated a vision and recommendations for academic health centers as they seek to transform into systems responsive to the changing clinical environment and able to continue to invest in teaching and research missions.[36]
  • In August 2014, Manatt Health authored a white paper for The Commonwealth Fund that examined states' efforts to promote integrated care delivery as part of their efforts to deliver high-quality, cost-effective care to Medicaid beneficiaries with comorbid physical and behavioral health conditions ("State Strategies for Integrating Physical and Behavioral Health Services in a Changing Medicaid Environment").[37]
  • Manatt Health advised Continuum Health Partners, a New York City nonprofit health system composed of three hospitals (Beth Israel, St. Luke's Roosevelt and NY Eye and Ear Infirmary) in the 2013 formation of a new, integrated health system with Mt. Sinai Hospital and the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai. The combined entity—called the Mount Sinai Health System—is one of the nation's largest nonprofit health systems.[38]
  • In early 2012, Manatt Health prepared an Overview of Final Exchange Regulations, as well as a report on State Milestones for ACA Implementation, for the State Health Reform Assistance Network.[39][40]

Manatt Digital[edit]

In May 2013, Manatt launched Manatt Digital to serve as a one-stop, full-service legal and business consulting division for clients in the digital media, entertainment and advertising industries.[41] Services include business consulting, partner negotiations, venture capital, strategic relationship-building and artist access, creative deal-making and mergers and acquisitions.[42]

Manatt Digital is headed by T. Hale Boggs, a partner in Manatt’s capital markets and corporate/finance practices.

Manatt Digital Media Ventures[edit]

Manatt Digital Media Ventures aims to cultivate start-ups and growth companies in and around the digital media landscape.[43]

Manatt Digital Media Ventures makes 10-15 investments a year in early-stage companies. The firm’s partners provide capital annually and also have the opportunity to personally invest alongside the fund. Since 2000, Manatt has made more than 90 investments in companies and funds focused on digital media, including Etsy, MaxPreps, Pinterest and DFJ Frontier.[44]



In 2010, it was revealed that the Government of Jamaica had undertaken the services of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips in an attempt to re-establish diplomatic talks with the United States Government over the extradition request for alleged Jamaican drug lord Christopher 'Dudus' Coke. Jamaican prime minister Bruce Golding and his ruling Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) had refused to extradite Coke, a notable supporter of the party, and an alleged enforcer and strongman—indicted by federal prosecutors in Manhattan in August 2009 on drug and gun trafficking charges—by claiming that evidence cited by federal prosecutors in the U.S. for an August 2009 indictment relied on wiretaps illegally obtained under Jamaican law. The revelation sparked a wave of controversy in Jamaica, and a public commission of enquiry was set up in 2011 with the same name as the law firm.[45]


  1. ^ Moore, McKenna. "The 2017 A-List". The American Lawyer. Retrieved July 31, 2017. 
  2. ^ Linda Darnell Williams, "Manatt Phelps' Rothenberg Goes to Latham & Watkins", Los Angeles Times, July 12, 1990.
  3. ^ Martin Smith, "Difficult days for Manatt & Co.", Modesto Bee, July 16, 1984.
  4. ^ "Ex-Sen. Tunney to Leave Law Practice", Associated Press in Oxnard Press-Courier, December 23, 1986.
  5. ^ "People: Los Angeles County", Los Angeles Times, August 14, 1985.
  6. ^ Marylouise Oates, "Celebration Suits Westside Law Firm", Los Angeles Times, November 8, 1985.
  7. ^ "Manatt Phelps & Phillips changes its name, Los Angeles Times, October 24, 1991.
  8. ^ "National Pro Bono Rankings"
  9. ^ "The Holocaust Survivors Pro Bono"
  10. ^ "Bet Tzedek"
  11. ^ "American Bar Association Pro Bono Awards"
  12. ^ "American Bar Association, A Bitter Fruit"
  13. ^ "Immigration Equality Honors Five National Law Firms with Annual Safe Haven Awards"
  14. ^ "CLAY AWARDS Immigration"
  15. ^ "Appeals Court Upholds Title IX Ruling Against Sweetwater"
  16. ^ "ICLC Awards Manatt Humanitarian Award - Met News
  17. ^ "Learning Rights Law Center"
  18. ^ "The American Lawyer Pro Bono 100"
  19. ^ "The Alfa International"
  20. ^ "The 2017 Am Law 200: Our Exclusive Report"
  21. ^ "Manatt 2017 Chambers Profile"
  22. ^ "Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP Profile"
  23. ^ "Best Lawyers"
  24. ^ "The Legal 500 Awards"
  25. ^ "44 Firms Receive WILEF’s Gold Standard Certification"
  26. ^ "The 2017 Diversity Scorecard: The Rankings"
  27. ^ "The 2017 Working Mother 50 Best Law Firms for Women"
  28. ^
  29. ^ "CNN: Reap Healthcare Law? Forget About It"
  30. ^ "The Hill: Healthcare Reform is a Good Deal for States"
  31. ^ "Washington Post: After Healthcare Ruling Come Doubts That Some States Can Meet Key Deadlines"
  32. ^ "American Medical News: States Eye Leveraging Health Reform Ruling to Cut Medicaid Eligibility"
  33. ^ "Leavitt Partners: Ario Bio"
  34. ^ "National Health Policy Forum: Bachrach Bio"
  35. ^ "Modern Healthcare: Calif. Health IT Vet Joins Manatt"
  36. ^ [1]
  37. ^ [2]
  38. ^ [3]
  39. ^ "Overview of Final Exchange Regulations"
  40. ^ "Report: State Milestones for ACA Implementation"
  41. ^ "Bloomberg News, 'Manatt, Jones Day, Howrey, Ropes & Gray: Business of Law'"
  42. ^ "Billboard, 'Manatt Launches Digital Media Investment Fund'"
  43. ^ "LABJ, 'Manatt Lanuches Digital Media Investment Arm'"
  44. ^ "Dow Jones, 'Law Firm Manatt Phelps Launches VC Arm for Digital Media Investments'"
  45. ^ Jamaican Government Relationship with Mannat

External links[edit]