Wilkinson Walsh Honored by Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice for Exceptional Pro Bono Advocacy

The Los Angeles Center for Law and Justice (LACLJ) recognized Wilkinson Walsh as its Pro Bono Partner of the Year.  In honoring the firm’s pro bono advocacy on behalf of low-income women who are experiencing domestic violence, LACLJ underscored how Wilkinson Walsh’s representation “has been vital to these individual clients and has brought safety and security to them and their children.”  Wilkinson Walsh will receive the award at LACLJ’s 47th Anniversary Awards Gala on May 28, 2020. The award follows the firm’s work in a pro bono legal separation and custody case, which culminated in a four-day trial in L.A. Superior Court in July 2019.  At trial, Wilkinson Walsh associates Roxana Guidero and Rahul Hari secured a favorable judgment for their client, who was seeking an equitable division of marital assets and primary custody of her children.  Wilkinson Walsh took on the representation as part of its ongoing partnership with …

Wilkinson Walsh Celebrates Another Outstanding Year of High Stakes Trials and Accolades for the Next Generation of Trial Lawyers

WASHINGTON –Wilkinson Walsh enters its fifth year having cemented its status as the premier trial litigation boutique in the country. 2019 featured three high-stakes, high-pressure trials, in which different partners served as lead trial counsel and eight partners in total had stand-up roles. The firm continued to receive accolades for its successes in delivering results to its clients while deepening its diverse bench of go-to litigators.

Wilkinson Walsh Associates Win Client’s Release in Pro Bono Resentencing Case

Washington, D.C. — Wilkinson Walsh associates Betsy Henthorne and Hayter Whitman, with assistance from partner Rakesh Kilaru, helped secure the early release of their pro bono client, Momolu Stewart, who had been sentenced to life in prison at the age of 16. Following Wilkinson Walsh’s successful efforts, Stewart, who is now 39 years old, was released from prison this week.  Under a recent Washington, D.C., law, the Incarceration Reduction Amendment Act (known as “IRAA”), Stewart was eligible to ask the court to reduce his sentence because he was under 18 at the time of the crime and had served more than 15 years in prison. Wilkinson Walsh successfully argued that Stewart should be resentenced based on, among other factors, the circumstances of his childhood, his accomplishments during his time in prison, and his demonstrated rehabilitation and fitness to society.  “The Wilkinson Walsh team is honored to stand beside Mr. Stewart …

Wilkinson Walsh Leads the Way in Legal Aid’s Generous Associates Campaign

WASHINGTON — The Legal Aid Society recently recognized Wilkinson Walsh for its record-breaking contributions to its Generous Associates Campaign, an annual fundraiser to help support Legal Aid’s efforts representing those most in need. Wilkinson Walsh raised the most money from firms with 50 attorneys or fewer, and topped the “Per Attorney Giving” competition, raising $1,452 per attorney in the D.C. office. “Our firm is strongly committed to pro bono representation, and we are thrilled to support Legal Aid’s mission to bring fair and equal access to justice for all,” said Wilkinson Walsh Founding Partner Alex Walsh. “We look forward to continuing to support Legal Aid’s important work representing those most in need.”  The Generous Associates Campaign is an annual fundraiser dating back to 1990. Led by associates at 82 law firms in DC and chaired by an associate co-chair committee, nearly 5,000 attorneys and staff contributed to the Campaign this year. …

Wilkinson Walsh Secures Victory in Pro Bono Employment Discrimination Case

Washington, D.C. — Wilkinson Walsh associate Amelia Frenkel helped secure victory in a pro bono case challenging alleged employment discrimination by the U.S. State Department. Frenkel was appointed by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to argue on behalf of a pro se litigant who challenged employment decisions on disparate treatment and impact bases but had lost on summary judgment. On behalf of Richard Figueroa, a foreign service officer in the State Department who alleged employment discrimination in promotions, Frenkel and Wilkinson Walsh partner James Rosenthal successfully argued that the United States District Court for the District of Columbia had misapplied the McDonnell Douglas framework, a three-step process to help employees make their cases for employment discrimination. After “thank[ing] Rosenthal and Frenkel for ably discharging their duties” in court, Circuit Judges Henderson and Wilkins and Senior Circuit Judge Edwards ordered that “the District Court …

Five Wilkinson Walsh Associates Honored by DC Volunteer Lawyers Project For Exceptional Advocacy

Washington, D.C. – The DC Volunteer Lawyers Project (DCVLP) recently honored five Wilkinson Walsh associates as DCVLP’s Domestic Relations Branch Volunteers of the Year, recognizing their dedication on behalf of victims of domestic abuse and their children.   The DCVLP honorees were Wilkinson Walsh associates Hal Brewster, Cali Cope-Kasten, Ash Jamali, Meg Loftus, and Kirsten Nelson. Ash, Meg, and Kirsten were honored for a significant trial victory earlier this year.  Working with DCVLP and under the supervision of partner Jeremy Barber, they prevailed in securing for their pro bono client full physical and legal custody over her two young children.  Wilkinson Walsh’s client divorced her husband in 2015 after suffering months of domestic abuse. In January 2017, her ex-husband (the plaintiff) filed a lawsuit seeking primary custody of their two children, falsely claiming that she had effectively kidnapped the children when she moved from the District of Columbia to Maryland. At …

Wilkinson Walsh Secures Victory in D.C. Child Custody Trial

Washington, D.C. – On August 11, Wilkinson Walsh associates won a pro bono custody case in D.C. Superior Court, securing primary residential custody and tiebreaker legal custody for our client over her two young children. Wilkinson Walsh’s client separated from her husband two years ago after suffering months of domestic abuse. In January 2017, her ex-husband (the Plaintiff) filed a lawsuit in which he sought primary custody of their two children, falsely claiming that she had effectively kidnapped the children when she moved from the District of Columbia to Maryland without giving him notice. Wilkinson Walsh took on this representation as part of its ongoing partnership with the D.C. Volunteer Lawyers Project. At trial, the Wilkinson Walsh team developed an evidentiary record proving that it was not in the children’s best interest for the Plaintiff to have primary custody. Wilkinson Walsh presented five witnesses, including an expert, who established that the …

Pro Bono Asylum Victory for Wilkinson Walsh

Wilkinson Walsh celebrates an asylum victory today for a sixteen-year old client fleeing persecution in Honduras. Our client suffered persecution in Honduras after his father, a member of a local taxi driver’s cooperative, defied a powerful international gang by refusing to make extortion payments. The gang stalked, threatened, and attempted to kidnap our client from school. Associate Max Warren led the case under the supervision of partner Brian Stekloff. Associates Norman Pentelovitch, Cali Cope-Kasten, and Meg Loftus, paralegal Youlan Xiu, and assistant Kat Phillips assisted with the case. The team worked in collaboration Human Rights First, a non-profit international human rights organization. We are proud of our client for the enormous bravery he has demonstrated in the face of adversity, and know he will be a model citizen in the United States.

Wilkinson Walsh Partner Lori Alvino McGill Featured on Legal Talk Network and Radiolab

Wilkinson Walsh partner Lori Alvino McGill was featured this week on two podcasts. On Legal Talk Network’s “Lawyer 2 Lawyer,” Lori is featured in an episode entitled “Tribal Law, Indian Child Welfare Act, and Custody.” Lori discusses her pro bono representation of a California family fighting to adopt their six-year-old foster child, Lexi, who they have raised for more than four years. Lexi is a multiethnic child who is 1/64 Native American and a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. She was removed from her foster parents following a lower court’s decision to place her with relatives in accordance with the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA), a federal law which was designed to help Native American families and communities remain intact. Lori has twice successfully appealed lower court rulings in the case, and the case is now pending on appeal for a third time, before the California Court of …

Wilkinson Walsh Celebrates its First Pro Bono Victory

Today, Wilkinson Walsh is proud to announce its first pro bono trial win by Norman Pentelovitch and Hal Brewster, who successfully represented a woman seeking a civil protection order from an abusive former boyfriend. During the trial, Hal made an opening statement and conducted the direct of our client.  The woman bravely faced a cross-examination by her abuser, who represented himself pro se.  Norman cross-examined the former boyfriend after he testified, and presented the closing argument. The judge ruled from the bench, finding the former boyfriend’s prior behavior and in-court testimony to be abusive and controlling.  She found our client’s testimony credible, and that documentary evidence proved the former boyfriend had committed an “intrafamily offense.”  The resulting civil protection order requires the former boyfriend to stay 100 yards away from our client at all times, and to not harass, threaten or stalk her.  At our client’s request, the court also ordered …