Squire Sanders resumes vote on Patton Boggs merger

May 23, 2014

Voting on the merger between Squire Sanders and Patton Boggs — which had been briefly suspended Thursday — is back on, and is set to conclude Friday, according to a person familiar with the process.

Squire Sanders put the vote on pause early Thursday, following a court filing Wednesday night accusing Patton Boggs of unethical conduct in a lawsuit the firm had previously been involved in. Patton Boggs had represented plaintiffs in an environmental case against Chevron, but earlier this month agreed to pay the oil giant a $15 million settlement meant to end the firm’s involvement in the matter. The conflict with Chevron was seen as a major hurdle Patton Boggs had to resolve in order for a merger to move forward.

Wednesday’s court filing, by the plaintiffs lawyer Steven Donziger in New York federal court, seeks to block the settlement between Patton Boggs and Chevron on the grounds that Patton Boggs acted unethically by ending its representation of the plaintiffs.

In a response filed in court Thursday, Patton Boggs’ attorney, Elkan Abramowitz, called the filing “defective” and “moot,” saying it was done “simply to generate publicity and cast a cloud over Patton Boggs.”

Catherine Ho covers law and lobbying for the Capital Business section of The Washington Post. She previously worked at the LA Daily Journal, the Los Angeles Times, the Detroit Free Press, the Wichita Eagle and the San Mateo County Times.
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