Manatt Strengthens Consumer Protection Bench in New York
Richard P. Lawson Brings Extensive State AG Consumer Protection Enforcement Experience
NEW YORK — Apr. 25, 2016 — Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, announced today that Richard P. Lawson has joined the New York City office as a partner in the Consumer Protection practice group. Appointed by Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi in 2011, Lawson previously served as director of the Consumer Protection Division in the Florida Office of the Attorney General.
As director of the Florida Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division, Lawson handled matters pertaining to deceptive advertising, fraudulent financial practices and travel-related scams, often including complex digital and financial matters. Under Lawson’s guidance, the Florida Consumer Protection Division secured over $450 million in judgments and settlements and was awarded the Federal Trade Commission’s first-of-its-kind “Partner Award” for its joint efforts with the agency.
“Florida is a known watchdog in the area of consumer protection, aggressively pursuing regulatory enforcement and regularly working with the FTC to crack down on deceptive practices in the state,” said Linda Goldstein, chair of the firm’s Advertising, Marketing and Media practice. “As the leader of the state’s consumer protection office, Richard is well-respected and will be a valuable asset to our clients, particularly in the areas of financial services, direct response marketing, telemarketing and negative option marketing, all of which have been a hotbed of enforcement action in Florida. Richard’s unique experience in combatting Internet-related fraud will be of particular value to all of our clients engaged in digital and social media marketing. We’re excited to welcome Richard to the firm.”
Lawson has extensive experience with government enforcement, having served as an assistant state attorney and assistant district attorney prior to his role as director of Consumer Protection in the Florida Office of the Attorney General. At Manatt, his practice will concentrate on regulatory enforcement defense and marketing- and media-related investigations, counseling and litigation. He will provide strategic counsel and defense to clients across the country facing single-state, multistate and FTC regulatory investigations and enforcement actions.
“With an exceptional reputation in a number of areas that are continuously on state AGs’ radar, including consumer financial services, healthcare, advertising and digital media, Manatt is a progressive leader who is at the forefront of industry issues,” said Lawson. “Through the firm’s significant legal, business and regulatory capabilities, firm professionals have a long track record of anticipating potential issues and successfully developing creative solutions that minimize clients’ exposure to investigations or litigation. I look forward to working closely with this talented group and leveraging my government enforcement experience to benefit clients.”
Manatt’s Consumer Protection practice defends clients across industries in their response to highly sensitive civil investigative demands and other inquiries from the FTC and state attorneys general. The team has an excellent record of resolving such actions amicably, by either convincing the Commission that enforcement proceedings should not be initiated or negotiating favorable settlements on clients’ behalf. When investigations are unavoidable or litigation is necessary, Manatt utilizes its nationally recognized litigation platform to vigorously defend client interests.
Lawson earned his B.A. from the University of Florida and his J.D. from Florida State University College of Law.
About Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP, is one of the nation’s leading law and consulting firms, with offices strategically located in California (Los Angeles, Orange County, Palo Alto, San Francisco and Sacramento), New York (New York City and Albany) and Washington, D.C. The firm represents a sophisticated client base—including Fortune 500, middle-market and emerging companies—across a range of practice areas and industry sectors. For more information, visit www.manatt.com.