M. Randall Oppenheimer
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Randy Oppenheimer has a national practice litigating general corporate matters and specific issues involving the energy and entertainment industries, and intellectual property, environmental, and antitrust and regulatory matters.
Randy served as the Chair or Co-Chair of O’Melveny’s Litigation Department for close to a decade, and is currently a member of the firm's Executive Committee. He was among the firm’s partners featured by The American Lawyer when it chose the firm to receive the National Litigation Department of the Year Award in 2004, and, again, when it chose the firm as a Finalist in 2011. He was named one of the "California Attorneys of the Year" by the Daily Journal in 2019 and has been a member of the Lawdragon “500 Leading Litigators in America.” While covering one of his trials, the Washington Post reported on what they described as Randy’s “razor-sharp intellect . . . [and] dignified delivery” in the courtroom. He was awarded the 2008 O’Melveny & Myers Values Award in recognition of his practice excellence and contributions to the firm.
Since 2014, Randy has served on the Board of Directors of Equal Justice Works, one of the country's most influential organizations seeking to promote a lifelong commitment to public service and equal justice by lawyers entering the legal profession.
Honors & Awards
- Named one of the “California Lawyer Attorneys of the Year” by the Daily Journal (2019)
- Featured in The American Lawyer when O'Melveny was elected as a Finalist (2011)
- Featured in The American Lawyer when O'Melveny was selected for the Litigation Department of the Year Award (2004)
- Part of Lawdragon's “500 Leading Litigators in America”
- Named a “Super Lawyer” in surveys conducted by Law & Politics Media Inc.
- Recommended by The Legal 500 US in the category of General Commercial Disputes (2018-2021)
- O’Melveny & Myers Values Award, in recognition of his practice excellence and contributions to the Firm (2008)
- University of Chicago, J.D., 1977: Comment Editor, The University of Chicago Law Review
- Harvard University, A.B., 1974: summa cum laude; Phi Beta Kappa
- American Bar Association, Previously Vice Chairman, Sub-Committee on Sports and Entertainment Law, Antitrust Section
- Equal Justice Works
Illustrative Trial Experience
- Represented AT&T and Time Warner, Inc. in the Department of Justice's antitrust challenge to AT&T's $85 billion acquisition of Time Warner, Inc.
- Represented Lockheed Martin in mass tort litigation involving in excess of 2,000 claims arising from one of the largest superfund site in the United States. The case settled mid-trial for less than plaintiffs’ costs, a miniscule fraction of the amount sought
- Successfully obtained a complete defense jury verdict for ExxonMobil against claims that it owed in excess of US$30 million to various Alaskan municipalities for unpaid oil spill clean up costs for the Valdez oil spill. The jury awarded zero. This verdict became one of the National Law Journal’s top defense verdicts for 2002
- Successfully secured a judgment after trial barring claims against a multinational oil company for alleged human rights abuses in Myanmar/Burma
- One of the lead trial counsel for Jeffrey Skilling at his criminal trial in Federal Court in the Southern District of Texas (Houston)
- Lead trial counsel for ExxonMobil in multiple proceedings in its successful effort to prevent cancellation of its leases at one of the largest natural gas reservoirs in the United States
- One of the lead trial counsel for Lennar Homes, one of the country’s largest public homebuilders, in trials successfully defending the company against accusations of fraud and malfeasance in connection with a landmark resort and home development near San Diego
- Lead trial counsel for Fidelity Investments in Federal Court in the Western District of Missouri defeating claims of undisclosed pension management fees exceeding US$330 million
- Lead trial counsel for AIG in AIG Retirement Services v. Credit Lyonnais, obtaining a favorable result for the company on the eve of trial
Illustrative Appellate Experience
- Multiple appellate arguments, including Doe v. Unocal before an en banc panel of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal
Illustrative Professional Experience
Commercial Litigation Involving the Entertainment Industry
- Lead outside counsel for a major television network in connection with class action matters, including a class action over alleged music rights violations and a class action over alleged unfair business practices (each with claimed damages substantially in excess of US$100 million)
- Lead outside counsel for a major independent production company in various matters, including litigation with a network concerning US$53 million in disputed licensing fees, litigation with a talent agency that materially reduced that agency’s claim to various television packaging fees, various negative injunction matters involving key talent, profit participation litigation, and intellectual property rights matters
- Lead outside counsel for a major studio in various matters, including litigation involving the studio’s television syndication practices
- Lead outside counsel for a client in connection with disputes involving the sale of an NBA basketball team
- Co-lead outside counsel for a leading technology company in litigation in the Northern District of California and Japan, successfully enjoining infringements of distinctive trade dress (successfully asserting both trademark and dilution claims)
- Lead outside counsel for Advance Micro Devices (AMD) a producer of microchips in litigation in Delaware federal court that successfully defeated an attempt by Intel to enjoin AMD’s use of MMX as a merchandising designation for its chips
- Co-lead outside counsel for ExxonMobil in the successful defense of land damage claims in the aftermath of the Exxon Valdez oil spill (in the face of aggregate claims exceeding US$350 million, the Alaskan jury awarded less than US$7 million in claims for damages to native lands, in one case awarding the native corporation plaintiff zero dollars in damages). (Different trial from the 2002 Exxon trial mentioned previously.)
Regulatory and Antitrust
- Co-lead outside counsel for Warner Bros. in class action antitrust litigation brought against the major studios alleging a conspiracy to fix the terms and conditions of net profits in talent contracts
- Lead outside counsel for Pacific Coast Cement in Hart-Scott-Rodino actions before the FTC relating to the acquisition of cement import facilities
- Lead outside counsel for PG&E for direct cost audit matters during the prudency review of the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant
- Co-lead outside counsel for a Japanese steel producer alleged in a private civil damages action to have violated US dumping laws
- Lead outside counsel in numerous professional liability matters for AmLaw 50 law firms