Roman Martinez is a 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 Supreme Court and the D.C., Sixth, Ninth, and Federal Circuits, among other courts.
Mr. Martinez recently 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 with respect to the government’s appellate litigation throughout the country.
Mr. Martinez has argued seven cases in the Supreme Court, including important cases in the fields of patent law, criminal law, civil rights, and civil procedure. He has filed over 70 briefs in the Supreme Court involving a wide range of legal issues, including tax, securities, intellectual property, criminal, environmental, education, civil rights, immigration, and First Amendment law. In recognition of his achievements, he recently received the Hispanic Bar Association of the District of Columbia’s 2016 Rising Star Award.
At Latham, Mr. Martinez handles civil and criminal matters involving an array of constitutional, statutory, and administrative law issues. He also consults with clients to develop creative approaches to difficult legal questions that arise in and out of litigation.
Mr. Martinez previously served as an associate at Latham in the Supreme Court & Appellate Practice. During that time, Mr. Martinez led a team that successfully invalidated a Department of Veterans Affairs regulation depriving veterans of important due process rights when seeking disability benefits. Mr. Martinez was awarded the National Organization of Veterans Advocates’ Veterans Community Service Award for his work on the case. Mr. Martinez also authored appellate briefs in high-profile cases in a broad range of substantive areas including administrative law, civil procedure, constitutional law, criminal law and procedure, voting rights, product liability law, and the law of arbitration.
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 Judge Brett M. Kavanaugh of the D.C. Circuit.
Mr. Martinez also previously served as an advisor on the Iraqi Constitutional Process to the US Ambassador to Iraq in 2005; as Director for Iraq at the National Security Council staff from 2004 to 2005; and as an advisor on Iraq’s postwar political transition at the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad, Iraq, from 2003 to 2004. 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 is a member of the Edward Coke Appellate Inn of Court, and he serves on the US Chamber of Commerce's Administrative Law & Government Litigation Advisory Committee. He previously served as a member of the D.C. Circuit’s Advisory Committee on Procedures. His work has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, the Cato Supreme Court Review, and other publications.
Mr. Martinez's representative matters include:
- 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)
- National Organization of Veterans Advocates v. Department of Veterans Affairs, 710 F.3d 1328 (Fed. Cir. 2013) (validity of regulation governing due-process protections in veterans benefit proceedings) (argued)
- Ramirez v. Bridgestone/Firestone, Inc., 414 S.W. 3d 707 (Tenn. Ct. App. 2013) (forum non conveniens) (argued)
- Walgreen Co. v. Drug Enforcement Agency, D.C. Cir. No. 12-1397 (Administrative Procedure Act challenge to agency enforcement action) (briefed)
*Matter handled prior to rejoining Latham
Mr. Martinez's recent publications include:
- "Supreme Court: SLUSA Does Not Prohibit State Court Jurisdiction Over Securities Class Actions," Latham & Watkins Client Alert (March 2018)
- “Octane Fitness and Highmark Decisions Turn Three,” Latham & Watkins Client Alert (May 2017)