RICHARD D. KLINGLER’s practice focuses on litigation and advice involving administrative, privacy, and constitutional law, as well as national security and foreign sovereign immunity issues. His law-intensive litigation and advisory projects are often undertaken for clients in the communications, finance, energy, and technology sectors.
Richard joined the firm in 1990 and first became a partner in 1996. He served from 2006–2007 as the General Counsel and Legal Adviser on the National Security Council staff. From 2005–2007, he served in the Office of the Counsel to the President, concluding as Special Assistant and Senior Associate Counsel to the president. He worked from 1997–2002 as an investment banker with Credit Suisse First Boston on equity capital market and M&A transactions and from 1994–1996 worked in Australia (while a Sidley lawyer) as Regulatory Adviser and then Regulatory Counsel for a leading Australian telecommunications company.
Richard has been an Adjunct Fellow with the American Enterprise Institute, addressing counter-terrorism legal issues, and, from 1993–1994, was a Guest Scholar at The Brookings Institution, which published his book, The New Information Industry: Regulatory Challenges and the First Amendment (1996). He has testified several times before Congress on constitutional, counterterrorism, and sovereign immunity issues, and has written on public policy matters for various national publications. He serves on the Board of the National Veterans Legal Services Program and, from 2016-2020, served as a Public Member of the Administrative Conference of the United States.Illustrative matters include:
- Administrative law. Participation in agency rulemaking and adjudicative proceedings and in judicial challenges to administrative rules and orders, in the telecommunications, finance, energy, and other sectors. Various finance sector matters include successfully arguing The Loan Syndications and Trading Ass’n v. SEC and Board of Governors of the Federal Res. Sys., 882 F.3d 220 (D.C. Cir. 2018) (setting aside a Dodd-Frank Act credit risk retention rule). Energy sector matters also include various matters involving the Keystone XL Pipeline, as well as litigation in the bankruptcy court, district courts, and courts of appeals.
- Privacy and data regulation. Extensive litigation and advisory work addressing government demands or requests for assistance or customer information, including those implicating the Fourth Amendment, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, CALEA, the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act, Congressional and administrative subpoenas, intelligence community programs, and related matters. Work also includes extensive privacy law due diligence in merger and acquisition transactions.
- Counterterrorism Litigation. Extensive litigation and advisory work in support of victims of the September 11th, 2001 attacks seeking damages against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, various Saudi-related banks and institutions, and other sovereign and private defendants. Includes testimony before House and Senate Congressional committees (leading to enactment of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act), approaches to various federal officials, and extensive litigation before the U.S. Supreme Court, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, and the S.D.N.Y. Illustrative cases in the In re Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2011 MDL docket include: O’Neill v. Asat Trust Reg. et al., 714 F.3d 659 (2d Cir. 2016) (led briefing and argued, split decision); Lloyd’s Syndicate No. 2 v. Al Rajhi Bank, 779 F. App’x 66 (2d Cir. 2019) (led briefing and argued, won), Federal Ins. Co. v. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, 741 F.3d 353 (2d Cir. 2013) (led briefing, won); and, before the U.S. Supreme Court, see briefing in Dockets Nos. 13-1146 (opposing cert.), 13-318 (seeking cert.), 08-640 (seeking cert.). Represented terrorism victims in Ministry of Defense (Iran) v. Elahi, 556 U.S. 366 (2009).
- National Security Work. Advisory and litigation work related to other matters involving the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, counterterrorism policies, and veterans’ cases. Matters include successful representation of a military officer and defense of counterterrorism programs in Lebron v. Rumsfeld, 670 F.3d 540 (4th Cir.) (led briefing, argued, won), cert. denied 567 U.S. 906 (2012) (counsel of record), and filing multiple U.S. Supreme Court amicus briefs supporting broad U.S. counterterrorism powers, including in Sokolow v. PLO, No. 16-1071 (2017) (on behalf of a bipartisan group of 23 U.S. Senators). Work has included cases addressing sovereign immunity and extraterritorial application of U.S. law, and pro bono cases challenging denials of veterans’ benefits.
- Constitutional law. Participated in U.S. Supreme Court and federal court of appeals cases in favor of broad Congressional and Executive Branch counterterrorism powers, judicial power over foreign actors harming U.S. interests, First Amendment rights of electronic media companies, and rights protected by the Free Exercise Clause and the Second Amendment (including in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008)). Challenged, on separation of powers grounds, President Obama’s purported exercise of authority to bar construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline.
- Review of merger transactions. Participated in litigation and/or regulatory review concerning large merger transactions — for example, transactions involving AT&T and Time Warner and AT&T and DIRECTV, and proceedings involving digital media providers.