F. Michael Kail

F. Michael Kail has been a partner in Steptoe's Washington office, where he is a member of the Litigation and Regulatory & Industry Affairs Departments, since 1978. His practice has focused on complex litigation. Mr. Kail has served in various management positions within the firm, including stints on the Executive Committee, Chairman of the Associates, Hiring, Compensation and Partnership Selection Committees, and as Vice Chair of the firm.

The focus of Mr. Kail's practice has been the energy industry. He has been involved in many of the major controversies facing petroleum companies over the past two decades. From 1973-81, he worked on the Federal Trade Commission's "Big Eight Case," an antitrust proceeding seeking to massively restructure the petroleum industry. In the late 1970s, he participated in the representation of one of the owners of the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System in complex administrative litigation challenging the carriers' initial tariffs. In the early 1980s and again in the early 1990s, he helped litigate cases involving the government's price control regime. And, from 1983 through 1991, he was immersed in a series of state proceedings challenging the valuation placed on Alaska North Slope crude oil.

Through these experiences he has become intimately familiar with the economics and operations at each level of the petroleum industry, from exploration through marketing, and with products from gas to oil to petrochemicals. He enjoys dealing with complex factual issues, ranging from the Alaskan regulations governing the calculation of oil tanker returns to the electro-chemistry of corrosion.

Alternative Dispute Resolution
Mr. Kail's fascination with understanding the factual underpinnings of controversies stems from his conviction that such understanding hastens resolution of disputes short of expensive and time- consuming litigation. He has successfully participated in both informal mini-trials and formal arbitration proceedings and has participated in the negotiation of settlements with government and private parties, resolving conflicts with original demands in excess of $1 billion dollars.

Because of the complex nature of his practice, Mr. Kail has become intimately familiar with the use of computers and has helped design both litigation support systems, to help manage cases with massive discovery, and substantive data bases.

Good to know

Areas of Practice 1) Complex Litigation, 2) Energy, 3) ERISA, 4) Labor & Employment, 5) Litigation and 6) Pipeline
Law School Yale Law School ( LL.B,1970)
Education Yale University (B.A.,1967)
Bar Member / Association District of Columbia, Connecticut State Bar Association,New York State Bar Association
Most recent firm Steptoe & Johnson
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