Management Committee Members: Mark A. McGinnis, Douglas J. Kunath, Benjamin A. Thinnes
Number of members: 8 Number of other lawyers: 7
Salmon, Lewis & Weldon, P.L.C. (SLW) is located in Phoenix, Arizona. Built on a dedication to providing practical solutions to clients, the firm represents clients with interests primarily in the industries of natural resources/ water law, environmental regulation and commercial transactions including real estate. In addition, it offers counsel on insurance coverage and defense, civil litigation, Indian law, municipal law, government relations and public utility law. The firm’s clients range in size from large companies to individuals and include one of Arizona’s largest utilities, irrigation and electrical districts, municipalities, water providers, manufacturing companies, national retailers, shopping center owners, institutional lenders, banks, developers and families and individuals. The firm’s success has been based on providing value, efficiency and flexibility to its clients with a focus on solving problems. Its attorneys are adept at working with clients, in-house counsel, consultants and other parties to creatively and efficiently resolve disputes and achieve solutions in a wide range of matters, including multiparty negotiations, collaborative working groups and litigation.
Main Areas of Practice:
Natural Resources & Water:
SLW’s natural resources and water group is one of the most respected in the region. Its practice covers all facets of water law in Arizona, including litigation, settlement negotiations, Colorado River issues and matters arising under Arizona’s Groundwater Code. Several of SLW attorneys have been involved for decades in the state court proceedings relating to the Gila and Little Colorado River General Stream Adjudications. SLW attorneys also have been actively involved in the negotiated settlement of numerous water right disputes and assisting clients with Arizona Groundwater Code compliance and obtaining Certificates of Assured Water Supply.
SLW’s attorneys practicing in the environmental area combine in-depth knowledge of often complex areas of the law with a focus on sensible and cost-effective solutions. Excellent working relationships with local, state and federal regulators and other environmental counsel facilitate their ability to resolve problems efficiently and effectively. The environmental practice group provides a wide range of assistance to clients, including obtaining favorable permit conditions; negotiating settlements of regulatory violations and compliance issues; successfully obtaining alternative water supplies and other protections for injured water providers and well owners; and handling wastewater treatment and reuse matters.
The commercial transactions group at SLW has experienced attorneys assisting developers, lenders, landlords, tenants and business owners in many business and transactional areas. The practice group covers all aspects of real estate investment, including acquisitions and dispositions of real estate, due diligence matters, development issues, debt and mezzanine financing and refinancing for vacant land, condominiums, hotels, office buildings, shopping centers, golf courses, multi-family housing developments, industrial parks and other commercial projects. Additionally, SLW counsels clients in connection with retail, office, restaurant and commercial leasing and lease administration. The commercial transactions group also offers its clients assistance in structuring business entities, investment deals, joint ventures and preferred equity transactions.
SLW’s litigation practice focuses on assisting clients to ascertain their objectives, evaluate suitable options and pursue favorable results. The firm’s seasoned attorneys have experience primarily in complex commercial disputes, ranging from water rights, administrative permits, contract disputes, insurance matters and environmental liability. SLW is familiar with working closely with its clients’ staffs, boards of directors and technical consultants on litigation matters, all within a budget in order to control litigation expenses.
Insurance Coverage & Defense:
SLW attorneys have advised insurers on matters of policy interpretation and duty to defend under a wide array of policies, including comprehensive general liability insurance, excess insurance, reinsurance, director and officer liability insurance, property insurance, accident and health insurance, life insurance and marine insurance. In addition, they have assisted clients with litigation involving insurance coverage claims in both state and federal court and defense of claims against insureds and prosecution of subrogation claims, including those involving bodily injury and wrongful death, personal injury, hazardous waste disposal and toxic torts, professional errors and omissions, securities fraud, product liability and construction disputes.
Electric Power & Utilities:
SLW has substantial involvement in power issues. The firm’s attorneys have been involved in negotiating and drafting power contracts, in the siting of electrical generating and distribution facilities, and in locating rights-of-way and easements. SLW has particular expertise in drafting and negotiating fuel supply contracts, arbitrating and litigating price disputes and addressing labor and right-of-way issues.
Special Districts & Utility:
The attorneys at SLW have a long history of representing special governmental districts, water and power providers and municipalities. This representation has provided the firm with a unique understanding of the problems and challenges such entities face. SLW has substantial experience in performing the tasks that are required of general counsel for such entities, including working cooperatively as a team with the board of directors, staff and technical consultants. The firm’s experience representing cities and special districts has allowed it to develop particular knowledge of the state’s open meeting and public records laws, labor issues, municipal services, rights-of-way and election law.
The firm represents regional and national clients, including manufacturing companies, one of Arizona’s largest utilities, special governmental districts, real estate developers, lenders, business owners, insurance companies, municipalities, water providers, national retailers and shopping center owners.