Recent events have caused dramatic changes for utilities and other energy-related companies and the introduction of increased competition has compelled companies to reshape their operations which previously were stringently regulated. These changes have been driven by distinct changes in regulatory philosophy in the U.S., with parallel developments internationally in varying degrees. This changed operating environment, together with the changing mix of services provided by energy companies, has altered the type and scope of needed legal services.

Our attorneys have experience in representing and advising investor-owned and publicly-owned utilities, independent providers, incumbent providers, new entrants, and industrial and municipal customers, developers, equity investors, and lenders, both domestically and internationally and in all phases of their needs: from the legislative arena, through the administrative process, and in state and federal judicial proceedings interpreting the rapidly evolving scope of utility legislation and regulation. At the same time, we are solution providers that understand the dynamics of the commercial and business world of our clients and bring sophisticated and practical experience to the structuring of transactions.

We provide a full range of legal services to clients in the energy and utilities industry, including project finance, construction and infrastructure, environmental, regulatory and legislative, and tax, relating to oil, natural gas, electricity, hydroelectric, solar and other energy sources. The firm also offers broad experience in the related practice areas of real estate, litigation, insurance, labor, special committee representation, and intellectual property. As dictated by the needs of our clients, we work in cross functional teams to provide the most comprehensive solutions and services to our clients.

Project Finance

Our attorneys have extensive experience in the financing and structuring of transactions related to oil and natural gas-fired plants; cogeneration facilities with fossil and synthetic fuels; hydroelectric projects; and solar projects domestically and internationally. We have counseled clients on matters regarding operation and maintenance agreements; fuel supply contracts; power sales and transmission agreements; and aspects of business management including partnerships, limited liability companies and joint ventures. We have experience in the construction of power plants and all aspects of the financing, including the negotiation of EPC contracts of power purchase agreements, operation and maintenance agreements, and organization agreements, as well as strategic advice concerning structuring of the transactions.

In the energy sector, our securities attorneys have represented underwriters and investor-owned utilities in billions of dollars of offerings. In addition, we have provided legal advice in non-registered offerings of IPPs. These have been offerings of traditional instruments, such as preferred and common stock and utility mortgage bonds, as well as tailored instruments, such as tax-exempt bonds and MIPs and MIDs (equity flavored debt).

We also perform for our energy-related clients all of the traditional corporate functions including reporting proxy solicitations, annual shareholders reports, press releases and other disclosure requirements. Our attorneys frequently advise the directors and management of clients regarding compliance with beneficial ownership reporting requirements and insider trading issues.

The firm’s lawyers have also been involved in tranched debt financings (public and private) aggregating up to $2 billion. These financings have included a variety of tailored features—such as variable rate features, subordinated notes with warrants, variable rate subordinated notes exchangeable at the option of the issuer for fixed rate subordinated notes, notes priced with reference to U.S. dollar-denominated Brazilian bonds, first mortgage bonds with sinking funds, and subordinated debentures assured of payment by letters of credit. Our attorneys have served as bond counsel, special tax counsel, and disclosure counsel for cities, counties, public authorities, and other governmental entities in connection with energy projects.

Utilities & Power Systems

Experience Highlights

Acquisition of General Electric's Hydro Equipment Business
Represented Andritz AG in the acquisition of the hydro power equipment business of General Electric, including GE’s majority interest in GE Hydro more
Arbitration for a global supplier of electro-mechanical equipment, systems, and services
The firm served as lead counsel to a global supplier of electro-mechanical equipment, systems, and services in an arbitration where the owner alleged more
Project counseling services for an international EPC contractor and manufacturer of power generation equipment
Provides project counseling services to an international EPC contractor and original equipment manufacturer on projects involving the construction of more
Wastewater compliance issues for Knoxville Utilities Board
Represented Knoxville Utilities Board with regard to wastewater compliance issues including negotiation of a comprehensive federal consent decree more