We defend a wide variety of clients in administrative,
civil, and criminal environmental enforcement matters in state and federal
courts, as well as before regulatory agencies. Our team has extensive
experience and a range of capabilities, enhanced by some of our team members’
tenures in key positions in the federal government.
Our depth of talent and experience makes Vinson & Elkins
one of the few law firms in the United States with this distinct capability.
Our judgment, along with our technical understanding of our clients’
businesses, particularly the industrial, manufacturing, and energy sectors
(upstream, midstream, and downstream), allows us to anticipate and identify the
collateral effects of regulations and environmental enforcement on our clients’
We have defended clients in high-profile matters, such as
civil and criminal enforcement actions, environmental citizen suits, and
alleged permit violations, among many others. We understand there is nothing
routine about environmental enforcement issues, and all facilities are subject
to compliance monitoring and enforcement, regardless of the industry. When a
client faces an enforcement action, whether administrative or judicial, our
team provides a strong defense, tracks ongoing technical and regulatory
requirements, engages in negotiations with the regulators, and plays an ongoing
advisory role with the client to help ensure future compliance.
Clients without proven counsel in this arena face
significant risk, exposure, and other consequences. Enforcement actions can
result in significant fines and penalties, as well as injunctive relief,
threaten a particular project or facility by prohibiting expansion or ongoing
operations, affect a company’s eligibility to participate in government
contracts, and interfere with how the company manages its operations. Drawing
on our vast internal network of experienced lawyers, and because the relevant
regulatory and enforcement agencies know and respect us, our team can achieve
cost-effective and satisfactory resolutions of environmental enforcement
matters for our clients.