Roman Martinez is the Deputy Office Managing Partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Latham & Watkins. As a member of the firm’s Supreme Court & Appellate Practice, he focuses primarily on appeals in the Supreme Court of the United States, the United States Courts of Appeals, and state appellate courts. Mr. Martinez has handled civil and criminal matters involving a wide range of constitutional, statutory, and administrative law issues, and he has argued cases in the US Supreme Court and the D.C., Second, Fourth, Sixth, Ninth, and Federal Circuits, and the New York, California, New Jersey, Ohio, and Tennessee appellate courts, among others.
Mr. Martinez’s practice encompasses civil and criminal matters spanning virtually all areas of law. In 2016, he rejoined Latham after serving as an Assistant to the Solicitor General at the US Department of Justice. In that role, he represented the United States in litigation before the Supreme Court and advised the Solicitor General on the government’s appellate litigation throughout the country.
Mr. Martinez has personally argued nine cases in the Supreme Court, including important cases in the fields of the First Amendment, patent law, criminal law, civil rights, employment, and civil and criminal procedure. He has filed more than 75 briefs in the Supreme Court involving a wide range of legal issues, including trademark, tax, securities, intellectual property, criminal, environmental, education, civil rights, and First Amendment law.
In 2020, Mr. Martinez argued and prevailed 8-1 in Babb v. Wilkie, an important case in which the Supreme Court clarified the rules for federal-sector employer liability under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. He also argued for respondents in Barr v. American Association of Political Consultants, persuading the Supreme Court to invalidate a portion of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) under the First Amendment. In the 2020 Term, he was part of teams successfully representing Facebook and the Government of Guam in unanimous Supreme Court victories under the TCPA and Comprehensive Environmental, Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) statutes.
Since November 2018, Mr. Martinez has persuaded the Supreme Court to grant certiorari in six cases. He has also repeatedly persuaded the Court to deny certiorari in high profile cases, including the State of Connecticut’s criminal prosecution of Michael Skakel.
Over the past four years, Mr. Martinez’s other appellate wins have included:
- Five victories in securities class actions or derivative lawsuits, in the Second, Sixth, and Ninth Circuits
- Victory overturning US$37 million adverse jury verdict based on asbestos-related product liability claims, in New Jersey Appellate Division
- Victories overturning US$31 million adverse jury verdict based on fraud and contract claims, in Tennessee Supreme Court and Court of Appeals
- Victory overturning US$23 million adverse jury verdict based on defamation claim arising from shareholder proxy fight, in Fourth Circuit
- En banc victory unanimously overturning (11-0) circuit precedent restricting veterans’ rights to challenge unlawful action by Department of Veterans Affairs, in Federal Circuit
- Victory in antitrust class-action alleging extraterritorial violations of Sherman Act, in Second Circuit.
Before joining Latham, Mr. Martinez served as a law clerk to Chief Justice John G. Roberts of the Supreme Court of the United States and to then-Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh of the D.C. Circuit.
From 2002 to 2005, Mr. Martinez served as an advisor on the Iraqi political and constitutional process, in various roles at the White House, at the US Embassy and Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq, and at the US Department of Defense. He received the Secretary of Defense Medal for the Global War on Terrorism and the US Department of Defense Distinguished Public Service Award for his service in Iraq.
Mr. Martinez serves on the US Chamber of Commerce’s Administrative Law & Government Litigation Advisory Committee, and he is a member of the Edward Coke Appellate Inn of Court. He previously served as a member of the D.C. Circuit’s Advisory Committee on Procedures, and now serves on the US District Court for the District of Columbia’s Committee on Grievances.
Mr. Martinez’s commentary has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and other publications, and he has appeared on the PBS NewsHour and other television programs to discuss the Supreme Court.
Selected Supreme Court Experience
Barr v. American Association of Political Consultants, Sup. Ct. No., 19-631 (2020) (First Amendment challenge to Telephone Consumer Protection Act (argued)
- Babb v Wilkie, Sup. Ct. No. 18-882 (2020) (federal-sector age discrimination) (argued)
- Guam v. United States, Sup. Ct. No. 20-382 (CERCLA statute of limitations) (briefed)
- Facebook v. Duguid, Sup. Ct. No. 19-511 (scope of TCPA liability) (briefed)
- Pivotal Software v. Tran, Sup. Ct. No. 20-1541 (applicability of PSLRA discovery stay to state-court securities actions) (briefed)
- Independent School District No. 283 v. E.M.D.H. ex rel. L.H. and S.D., Sup. Ct. No. 20-905 (IDEA statute of limitations) (briefing in progress)
- Seldin v. Estate of Stanley C., Silverman, Sup. Ct. No. 20-895 (enforceability of arbitration awards) (briefed)
- Vermont National Telephone Co. v. Vermont Dep’t of Taxation, Sup. Ct. No. 20-1159 (tax situs) (briefed)
- Gray v. Wilkie 139 S. Ct. 2764 (2019) (reviewability of agency action by Department of Veterans Affairs) (briefed)
- Dine Citizens Against Ruining Our Environment v. Bureau of Indian Affairs, Sup. Ct. No. 19-1166 (2020) (Rule 19 joinder in APA actions) (briefed)
- AMG Capital Management v. Federal Trade Commission, Sup. Ct. No. 19-508 (availability of monetary relief under Section 13(b) of FTC Act) (amicus brief on behalf of Surescripts, LLC)
- Sellers v. McDonough, Sup. Ct. No. 20-1148 (definition of “claim” under veterans disability statutes) (amicus brief on behalf of National Organization of Veterans Advocates)
- Kisor v. Wilkie, 139 S. Ct. 2400 (2019) (deference to agency interpretation of regulations) (amicus brief on behalf of National Organization of Veterans Advocates)
- Connecticut v. Skakel, Sup. Ct. No. 180-185 (2019) (ineffective assistance of counsel) (briefed)
- Provident Savings Bank, FSB v. McKeen-Chaplin, 138 S.Ct. 471 (2017) (Fair Labor Standards Act “administrative” exemption) (briefed)
- Fry v. Napoleon County Schools, 137 S. Ct. 743 (2017) (exhaustion under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) (argued)*
- Halo Electronics, Inc. v. Pulse Electronics, Inc., 136 S. Ct. 1923 (2016) (Patent Act enhanced damages) (argued)*
- Simmons v. Himmelreich, 136 S. Ct. 1843 (2016) (liability under the Federal Tort Claims Act) (argued)*
- Musacchio v. United States, 136 S. Ct. 709 (2016) (criminal jury instructions and statute-of-limitations defenses) (argued)*
- United States v. Kwai Fun Wong, 135 S. Ct. 1625 (2015) (equitable tolling of claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act) (argued)*
- Yates v. United States, 135 S. Ct. 1074 (2015) (Sarbanes-Oxley Act obstruction of justice provision) (argued)*
- Octane Fitness, LLC v. Icon Health & Fitness Inc., 134 S. Ct. 1749 (2014) (Patent Act attorney fees) (argued)*
- Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District RE-1, S. Ct. No. 15-827 (substantive standard of liability under Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) (briefed)*
- Michigan v. EPA, 136 S. Ct. 2463 (2016) (Administrative Procedure Act challenge to regulatory action under the Clean Air Act) (briefed)*
- United States v. Marlene June, 135 S. Ct. 1625 (2015) (equitable tolling of claims under the Federal Tort Claims Act) (briefed)*
- West Virginia, et al. v. Environmental Protection Agency, 136 S. Ct. 1000 (2016) (statutory and constitutional validity of Clean Power Plan (opposition to application for stay)*
- Highmark Inc. v. Allcare Health Management System, Inc., 134 S. Ct. 1744 (2014) (standard of appellate review for Patent Act attorney fees) (briefed)*
- Moores v. Hildes, 135 S. Ct. 46 (2014) (Section 11 liability under Securities Act) (certiorari-stage amicus brief)*
- Ridley School District v. M.R., J.R., as parents of E.R. 135 S. Ct. 2309 (2015) (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act “stay-put” provision) (certiorari-stage amicus brief)*
- Vance v. Ball State University, 133 S. Ct. 2434 (2013) (Title VII retaliation) (briefed)
Selected Federal Appellate Court Experience
Birnbaum v. General Electric Co., 2d Cir. No. 20-01741 (securities class action) (argued)
- Puma Biotechnology v. Eshelman, No. 20-1329 (4th Cir.) (defamation) (argued)
- National Organization of Veterans Advocates v. Secretary of Veterans Affairs, Fed. Cir. No. 20-1321 (2020) (reviewability of agency action by Department of Veterans Affairs) (argued en banc)
- Koshy v. Barbarosh, 788 Fed. Appx. 536 (9th Cir. 2019) (securities derivative suit) (briefed)
- Dine Citizens Against Ruining Our Environment v. Bureau of Indian Affairs, 932 F.3d 843 (9th Cir. 2019) (Rule 19 joinder) (briefed)
- Wada v. United States, No. 19-2983 (2d Cir.) (criminal fraud) (to be argued)
- South Carolina Retirement Systems Group Trust v. Eaton Corp. PLC, 791 Fed. Appx. 230 (2d Cir. 2019) (securities class action) (argued)
- Biocad JSC v. F. Hoffman-La Roche, 942 F.3d 88 (2d Cir. 2019) (extraterritoriality of Sherman Act) (briefed)
- Steamfitters Industry Pension Fund v. Endo International PLC, 771 Fed. Appx. 494 (2d Cir. 2019) (securities class action) (argued)
- Graham v. Fearon, 721 Fed. Appx. 429 (6th Cir. 2018) (ERISA class action) (argued)
- ABS Entertainment v. CBS Corporation, 908 F.3d 405 (9th Cir. 2018) (copyright) (amicus brief)
- Gamero v. Koodo Sushi Corp., 752 Fed. Appx. 33 (2d Cir. 2018) (Fair Labor Standards Act) (briefed)
- National Organization of Veterans Advocates v. Department of Veterans Affairs, 710 F.3d 1328 (Fed. Cir. 2013) (challenge to VA regulation) (argued)
- Walgreen Co. v. Drug Enforcement Agency, D.C. Cir. No. 12-1397 (Administrative Procedure Act challenge to agency enforcement action) (briefed)
Selected State Appellate Court Experience
- Milan Supply Chain Solutions v. Navistar, No. W2018-00084-SC-R11-CV (Tenn. S. Ct. 2021) (affirming reversal of $31 million fraud verdict) (argued)
- Milan Supply Chain Solutions v. Navistar, 2019 WL 3812483 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2019) (overturning $31 million fraud verdict) (argued)
- Lanzo v. Imerys Talc America, No. A-005711-17 (N.J. App. Div.) (overturning $37 million product liability verdict) (argued)
- Navistar v. Dutchmaid Logistics, Ohio Ct App. No. 2020 CA 0003 (fraud) (argued)
- Mahar v. General Electric, N.Y. Supreme Ct. App. Div. No 2019-05203 (securities class action) (argued)
- Martz v. Eighth Judicial District Court, 447 P.3d 1085 (Nevada Sup. Ct. 2019) (stay of securities class action (briefed)
- Ramirez v. Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc., 414 S.W. 3d 707 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2013) (forum non conveniens) (argued)
*Matter handled prior to joining Latham
Selected Thought Leadership
Mr. Martinez’s recent thought leadership includes:
- Moderator, A Look Ahead at the Biden Administration’s Regulatory and Enforcement Priorities,” Latham & Watkins Webcast (July 2021)
- Moderator, A Look Ahead at the Biden Administration’s Regulatory and Enforcement Priorities,” Latham & Watkins Webcast (January 2021)
- Author, “US Congress Affirms and Expands SEC’s Disgorgement Authority in Annual Defense Spending Bill,” Latham & Watkins Client Alert News Flash (January 2021)
- Panelist, “U.S. Supreme Court Roundup,” US Chamber Litigation Center and the Institute for Legal Reform (July 2020)
- Moderator, “U.S. Supreme Court Round-Up,” Federal Bar Association (July 2020)
- Author, “US Supreme Court Decisions in Presidential Subpoena Cases: Implications for Private Parties,” Latham & Watkins Client Alert (July 2020)
- Panelist, “A Look at the U.S. Supreme Court,” Free Enterprises in the Courts: What to Expect in 2019 and Beyond”, US Chamber Litigation Center and the Institute for Legal Reform, San Francisco (October 2019)
- Author, “Supreme Court: SLUSA Does Not Prohibit State Court Jurisdiction Over Securities Class Actions,” Latham & Watkins Client Alert (March 2018)
- Author, “What the Supreme Court’s Whistleblower Decision Means for Companies,” Latham & Watkins Client Alert (February 2018)
- Author, “Octane Fitness and Highmark Decisions Turn Three,” Latham & Watkins Client Alert (May 2017)