Background - Practices (Details)


The automotive industry remains a key driver of the global economy. In today's highly competitive and regulated market, auto companies, suppliers, and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) face an increasing range of challenges:

  • Strict safety and emissions standards
  • Compliance enforcement efforts and scrutiny
  • Pressure from individual and allied competitors
  • Supply chain management issues
  • New markets that are both complex and well defended
  • Shrinking timeframes for contracting and crisis responses

Crowell & Moring's automotive practice delivers cross-disciplinary, full-service legal counsel that helps domestic and international industry clients address these and other significant challenges, and exploit emerging opportunities to their fullest extent. We provide effective guidance where business strategies and legal solutions intersect, including providing regulatory counseling with respect to environmental, labor, product safety, and international trade issues, as well as negotiating key vendor, union, employment, and government contracts, managing crises and public relations concerns, resolving disputes with customers, industry participants, and regulatory agencies, and serving as lead counsel in high-profile litigation.

Our automotive practice follows a practical, life-cycle approach to resolving client issues today while laying the groundwork for successful initiatives down the road. From the launch of a new business or product to resolving disagreements with suppliers and customers, to negotiating major corporate transactions, we offer a full suite of services. These include advice on lobbying, design compliance, labeling, warnings, warranties, warranty disputes, recalls, safety, contracts, litigation, and alternative dispute resolution.

Like a well-designed vehicle, our team works closely and cooperatively with members of the firm's other practice areas to provide comprehensive counsel. Our group includes members of the firm's antitrust, environmental, government contracts, intellectual property, international trade, labor and employment, product risk management, torts, trade associations, and trade secrets teams to provide end-to-end advice on virtually any issue that may arise.  

As trial attorneys, we represent clients in state and federal courts across the country and before regulatory agencies such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The automotive industry team includes former agency representatives, federal and state prosecutors, and trial attorneys who understand the objectives and tactics of law-enforcement and administrative officials, particularly in the current environment of "regulation through litigation."

We understand the interests and needs of domestic and international equipment suppliers, major manufacturers, trade associations, consulting companies, and research and development enterprises alike. Our strong presence in Washington, D.C., along with our international capabilities and regulatory and litigation prowess, makes us a go-to team for bet-the-company matters.