Daniel W. Wolff

Washington, D.C.
Phone: +1 202.624.2621
1001 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20004-2595

Dan Wolff is a litigator and regulatory problem solver. He is a partner in Crowell & Moring's Washington, D.C. office and chairs the firm's Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice. Dan works with clients across a wide spectrum of regulated industries, chiefly advising on or handling litigation arising under the Administrative Procedure Act or as a result of government enforcement actions or commercial and products liability actions. Dan regularly appears in federal district and appellate courts around the country and before a host of agency tribunals, and counsels clients on their rights and obligations under a number of federal regulatory programs.

In addition to being a skilled litigator, Dan advises clients in responding to government investigations of workplace accidents, fatalities, supervisor liability, whistleblower complaints, and requests for company records. He also speaks and writes frequently on administrative law litigation, and all aspects of workplace safety and health compliance and enforcement defense.

Representative Engagements

  • Administrative Procedure Act / Constitution
    • Dan is a veteran federal district court litigator against the United States. He has brought numerous actions on behalf of clients against Cabinet-level departments or their sub-agencies seeking injunctive and declaratory relief under the Administrative Procedure Act or U.S. Constitution.
    • As part of his litigation practice, Dan also represents clients from time to time as intervenors or amici in third-party litigation filed by or against federal agencies.
    • Dan also advises clients on rights and litigation strategies arising under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
    • His recent APA litigation wins include:
      • As lead counsel for a pair of trade associations, Dan prevailed on summary judgment in federal district court in the District of Columbia, obtaining a ruling that the trade associations’ members were eligible for payments under an $8 billion emergency relief fund created as part of the 2020 CARES Act.
      • Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a government defense contractor in a FOIA case in the Northern District of California, in which the court agreed with Crowell’s argument that confidential information of its client in possession of the Department of Defense was exempt from disclosure under FOIA Exemption 4.
  • Appellate
    • Dan regularly appears in the federal courts of appeals, as well, frequently in petitions for review of federal agency rulemakings or in opposing (or supporting as intervenor or amicus) some other type of agency action on appeal. He has argued appellate matters before the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the D.C., Fourth, Seventh, Tenth, Eleventh, and Federal Circuits. He has also argued appellate matters in the state/local courts of the District of Columbia and Maryland.
    • Among his noteworthy recent appellate cases are:
      • Sanford Health Plan v. United States, No. 2019-1290 (Fed. Cir.); Montana Health Co-Op v. United States, No. 2019-1302 (Fed. Cir.) (August 14, 2020) (Dan presented argument, and the Federal Circuit affirmed judgment, in a pair of cases seeking damages against the United States for money owed under the Cost-Sharing Reduction Program established by the Affordable Care Act) 
      • Maine Community Health Options v. United States, No. 18-1023 (U.S. Supreme Court) (April 27, 2020) (on brief) (in a huge win for health plans that offered health insurance on the Affordable Care Act exchanges, Crowell represented the lead petitioner in a series of cases seeking damages against the United States for money owed under the ACA's Risk Corridors Program)
      • Overbey v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore, 930 F.3d 215 (4th Cir. 2019) (Dan was lead counsel and presented argument in this groundbreaking First Amendment case in which the Fourth Circuit held that a municipality may not enforce a non-disparagement provision of a settlement agreement in a civil rights case where the effect of enforcement would be either the stifling of the right of the settling plaintiff to speak about the official misconduct giving rise to her civil rights claims or the penalizing of her for so speaking by denying her a portion of the agreed-upon settlement)
      • MedStar Health, Inc. v. D.C. Department of Health, 146 A.2d 360 (D.C. 2016) (Dan was lead counsel and presented argument on behalf of a major health care system, obtaining reversal of a decision of the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) in a seminal case establishing the appropriate standard of review for OAH to apply in considering decisions of the Statewide Health Planning and Development Agency to grant or not grant a certificate of need).
    • Dan’s current or recent appearances on behalf of amicus curiae include a case that will be argued in the Supreme Court in Fall 2020 concerning the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act and a FOIA case decided in August 2020 in which the Second Circuit affirmed the lower court’s decision consistent with the position advanced by Crowell in its amicus brief.
  • Recovery Litigation
    • Dan is actively involved in Crowell & Moring's recovery litigation practice.
    • Among other things, he is a central member of the Crowell & Moring team that represents multiple health insurers before the U.S. Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, and the Court of Federal Claims in a series of lawsuits seeking high-dollar damages against the United States in claims arising under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). He has presented multiple arguments before the Court of Federal Claims, including successful arguments in the lead cases for damages stemming from the Government’s failure to pay certain cost-sharing reduction (CSR) payments under Section 1402 of the ACA. He defended those judgments on appeal in argument before the Federal Circuit on January 9, 2020.
    • Dan is also part of Crowell’s team seeking damages on behalf of health plans stemming from overpayments for prescription drugs.
  • Enforcement Defense
    • Dan defends industry clients in court or before administrative tribunals against citations and penalties, most frequently in actions commenced by the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) or Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA).
  • Natural Resources
    • In addition to his litigation practice, Dan has subject-matter experience in a wide variety of natural resources and public lands disputes, and this aspect of his practice frequently converges with his litigation practice in matters arising under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). On behalf of mining and other natural resources clients, Dan has appeared and argued in the federal district courts and courts of appeals on NEPA-related matters. He also counsels clients on issues arising under federal mineral leasing programs, the Antiquities Act, and the National Historic Preservation Act, among other things.
    • As part of his natural resources litigation practice, Dan has also regularly appeared before the Interior Board of Land Appeals (IBLA) in public lands disputes, both for petitioning parties as well as intervenors.
  • Mass Torts / Products Liability / Commercial
    • As a former federal district court law clerk, Dan is also “at home” in torts and commercial litigation, having represented clients in matters ranging from environmental torts and public nuisance, to breach of contract, fraud, and civil RICO.
    • Dan is currently partnering with his Torts colleagues on an active set of national litigation matters involving medical devices, utilizing his substantial briefing and in-court experience to lead the litigation motions practice.

Dan serves on the firm's Public Service Committee and maintains an active pro bono practice in a wide variety of areas, including due process litigation on behalf of special needs students under the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act, asylum, habeas corpus, landlord-tenant, rights of the disabled under the Americans with Disabilities Act, fair wages, and common law torts. On such matters he has appeared in the federal courts, the U.S. Immigration Court, and the courts of Maryland and the District of Columbia.

Outside of the firm, Dan serves on the steering committee of the D.C. Bar Association’s Administrative Law and Agency Practice Community, is a past president of the Energy and Mineral Law Foundation (EMLF), is a member of the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, and is a member of the ABA and involved in its Sections on Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice, Labor and Employment and its Safety and Health subcommittee, and Environment, Energy and Resources.

Dan graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1992, where he earned a B.A. from the School of Journalism. He graduated from the University of Dayton School of Law, summa cum laude, in 2001. While in law school, Dan served as an editor on the University of Dayton Law Review and was active with the Environmental Law Society. Immediately following law school, he clerked for two years in the Southern District of Ohio for the Honorable Walter H. Rice.

Dan is licensed to practice in the District of Columbia and Ohio and is also a member of the bars of multiple federal courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court.


Admitted to practice: District of Columbia, Ohio; U.S. Supreme Court, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado, U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, U.S. District Court for the Northern and Southern Districts of Ohio

Highlights, News & Knowledge

Speeches & Presentations

  • "Mitigating Employment Law Risks During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Handling Employee Complaints Today to Avoid Investigations Tomorrow," Crowell & Moring Webinar (April 16, 2020). Presenters: Trina Fairley Barlow, Rebecca Monck Ricigliano, Daniel W. Wolff, and Katie Erno.
  • "What if Your Business Is Essential, But Your Employees Are Afraid to Report to Work?" Crowell & Moring Webinar (April 3, 2020). Presenters: Ellen Moran Dwyer, Anne Elise Herold Li, Daniel W. Wolff, and Glenn D. Grant.
  • "Is Agency Guidance Reviewable (And If So, When)?" ABA Administrative Law Conference, Washington, DC (November 1, 2018). Moderator: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Energy Law Update," Energy & Mineral Law Foundation 39th Annual Institute, Nashville, TN (June 18, 2018). Presenters: Daniel W. Wolff and Elizabeth B. Dawson.
  • "Can an Intelligible Distinction Between Legislative Rules and Guidance be Articulated?" D.C. Bar Webinar (April 26, 2018). Presenter: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Privileges in Internal Investigations, MSHA Investigations, Discovery and the 110 Context," Mine Safety & Health Law Special Institute, Washington, D.C. (March 22, 2018). Presenter: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Third Thursday--C&M's July Labor & Employment Update: Following the Supreme Court: A New Approach to Judicial Review of Government Agency Decisions?," Crowell & Moring Webinar (July 20, 2017). Presenters: Thomas P. Gies, David McFarlane, Daniel W. Wolff, Glenn D. Grant, and Jillian Ambrose.
  • "Trump’s 'Two-for-One' Executive Order to Reduce Regulation – What Does it Mean for Industry?" Crowell & Moring's First 100 Days Series Webinar (March 2, 2017). Presenters: Daniel W. Wolff and David Chung.
  • "Update on Key Mine Safety Issues," National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association's Legal Symposium, Nashville, TN (March 23, 2016). Speaker: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Looking Left and Right of a Major Mine Accident or Fatality: Preparing for Crisis Management Before the Crisis Occurs," IMA-NA Industrial Minerals Technology Workshop, San Diego, CA (March 16, 2016). Speaker: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Recent Developments in Mine Safety and Health Law," ABA Occupational Safety and Health Law Committee 2016 Midwinter Meeting, Santa Barbara, CA (March 10, 2016). Speaker: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • Energy & Mineral Law Foundation 36th Annual Institute, Amelia Island, FL (June 21-23, 2015). Program Chair: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Got Chemicals? The State of Play on Chemical Security Regulations," Crowell & Moring Webinar (December 17, 2014). Presenters: Warren Lehrenbaum, Daniel W. Wolff, and Evan D. Wolff.
  • "MSHA Respirable Coal Mine Dust Rules," Kentucky Mineral Law Conference, Lexington, Kentucky (October 22-23, 2014). Speakers: Edward M. Green and Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Regulatory Update," 5th Law of Shale Plays Conference, Pittsburgh, PA (September 4-5, 2014). Panelist: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "MSHA Inspection/Investigation Authority, Part A: The Scope of MSHA’s Authority Under 103(a) and (h)," EMLF Special Institue on Mine Safety and Health Law Conference, Washington, D.C. (April 22-23, 2014). Program Chair and Moderator: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Special Inspection Initiatives and MSHA Documents Request Authority: The Gifts That Keep on Giving and Taking," Colorado Mining Association, 116th National Western Mining Conference & Exhibition, Denver, CO (April 14-17). Speaker: Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Litigation Forecast Webinar: Environmental Regulation and Litigation Risks 2014," Crowell & Moring Webinar (March 4, 2014). Presenters: Susan M. Mathiascheck, Kevin C. Mayer, Kirsten L. Nathanson, and Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Energy Litigation Update," Energy & Mineral Law Foundation Winter Workshops on Energy Law, Fort Lauderdale, Fl (February 9-11, 2014). Moderator: Kirsten L. Nathanson; Panelists: Chet M. Thompson and Daniel W. Wolff.
  • "Energy Litigation Update," Energy & Mineral Law Foundation Winter Workshops on Energy Law (February 11, 2013). Panelists: Kirsten L. Nathanson, Chet M. Thompson, Daniel W. Wolff, and Thomas (Tim) C. Means.


Client Alerts & Newsletters

Media Mentions

Firm News & Announcements

Jul.16.2020 Crowell & Moring Represents University of California in Suit against Department of Homeland Security over International Student Directive
May.06.2020 The National Law Journal Names Crowell & Moring to 2020 Pro Bono Hot List
Apr.28.2020 Maine Community Health Options Wins U.S. Supreme Court Ruling Enforcing Government Payment Obligation Under Affordable Care Act ‘Risk Corridor’ Cases
Nov.25.2019 Harlem Park Residents Sue Baltimore Police, Former Commissioner, Over Drastic, Multi-Day Lockdown
Jul.12.2019 Crowell & Moring and ACLU Achieve Victory in Free Speech Case Challenging Gag Orders Imposed on Survivors of Police Abuse in Baltimore
Sep.07.2018 LITIGATION NOTE: Crowell & Moring Succeeds in First Affordable Care Act Cost Sharing Reduction Case
Oct.31.2017 Super Lawyers Recognizes 79 Crowell & Moring Lawyers Across United States
Nov.30.2016 Super Lawyers Recognizes 71 Crowell & Moring Lawyers Across United States
Oct.27.2015 Super Lawyers Recognizes 90 Crowell & Moring Attorneys
Sep.30.2014 Super Lawyers 2014 Recognizes 90 Crowell & Moring Attorneys
Sep.01.2013 Super Lawyers 2013 Recognizes 64 Crowell & Moring Attorneys
Jan.17.2013 Crowell & Moring Elects Seven New Partners and Promotes Twelve Attorneys to Senior Counsel and Counsel Positions
Apr.01.2004 Crowell & Moring Prevails Before U.S. Supreme Court in Long Running Western Mineral Rights Controversy