Paul A. Werner

Paul A. Werner: Attorney with Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP


Paul Werner is a partner and Practice Leader of the firm’s Business Trials Practice Group resident in the Washington D.C. office.

Areas of Practice

Mr. Werner is a seasoned first-chair litigator, whose prodigious representations over the past decade have been before diverse decision-making authorities, including all levels of courts and administrative tribunals, federal and state, as well as arbitral tribunals, and spanned a wide range of complex litigation matters. These matters have run the gamut from “bet the company” commercial disputes to controversies involving statutory, constitutional, communications, energy, environmental, insurance, intellectual property, false advertising, trade secrets, privacy, and administrative law issues.

Mr. Werner has extensive experience representing cable operators, telecommunications, and other broadband providers in matters involving communications law issues, including local franchising, PEG programming, rights-of-way, pole attachments and infrastructure deployment, and a host of other related issues. He has represented providers on these issues in state and federal courts and participated in rulemakings and adjudications before the U.S. Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”).

Mr. Werner also regularly defends companies against putative class actions, particularly suits involving claims of unfair competition, state consumer protection statutes, and products liability. Recently, he successfully represented an association of communications providers in defeating certification of a putative class of landowners seeking damages for alleged unauthorized “telecommunications” use of easements they had granted to an electric utility, and is currently defending the trial court’s decision on appeal.

Paul also represents diverse clients in domestic and international arbitration matters. Paul recently represented a Korean satellite telecommunications provider in complex and high-stakes international arbitration proceedings, including lengthy evidentiary hearings, stemming from a dispute the Wall Street Journal called an “outer-space turf war.”

Mr. Werner is additionally experienced in representing companies in governmental and internal investigations. He has represented clients in criminal and civil investigations, including investigations arising under the False Claim Act, the Anti-Kickback Act, and the FCC E-Rate program.

His practice includes significant trial and appellate experience. In recent years, Paul has tried multiple disputes to judgment. He also recently assisted with a lengthy trial in federal court involving false advertising claims that resulted in a favorable jury verdict. Mr. Werner also regularly represents clients in state and federal appellate courts, including the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Werner's matters are regularly reported in the media, including Law360.

Mr. Werner is dedicated to pro bono representations and public interest litigation. On behalf of a community organization, Paul successfully obtained an appellate decision overturning a trial court decision that had upheld a planning board's approval of a commercial water bottling operation in an environmentally-protected area with trailheads into the Catskill mountains. And he is currently representing an environmental organization in federal court litigation arising under the Environmental Species Act, as well as a separate not-for-profit organization in unrelated environmental litigation concerning the Bristol Bay region of Southwest Alaska.


• Highly Recommended for Media, Technology and Telecoms, Legal 500, 2012-2018
•Washington D.C. Super Lawyer, 2014-2016


•Won a preliminary injunction in favor of nearly a dozen communications providers that led to favorable resolution of federal court litigation against the City of Baltimore involving Section 253 of the federal Communications Act.
•Successfully represented the California Cable and Telecommunications Association in defeating certification of a class of statewide landowners seeking injunctive relief and damages for alleged wrongful telecommunications” use of easements they granted to an electric utility.
•Won summary judgment in favor of a cable operator in long-running federal court litigation brought by a local franchising authority claiming millions of dollars in damages for an alleged breach of the franchise agreement. (Mecklenburg County v. Time Warner Entertainment-Advance/Newhouse P’ship, 2010 WL 391279 (W.D.N.C. 2010))
•Won summary judgment in favor of a cable operator in federal court litigation brought by local franchising authorities alleging violation of Public, Educational, and Governmental obligations
•Defended cable operator through a weeks' long trial of a state court action brought by an investor-owned electric utility claiming the operator owed millions of dollars in back pole attachment fees for allegedly providing telecommunications services
•Defended an international automobile manufacturer in coordinated putative class actions involving products liability and state consumer protection statutes based on allegations of defective alignment systems and consequent tire wear. (In Re LR3 Litigation (MDL 2008))


•Law clerk to The Honorable Karen LeCraft Henderson of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit


Class Action Defense Strategy Blog

• Second Circuit Affirms “Snap” Removal Practice, March 29, 2019
• Supreme Court Poised To Alter TCPA Landscape With Review Of Key Term 'Advertisement',” November 15, 2018
• 5 TCPA Class Action Trends to Watch in 2018 - Legislation, Administrative Law & Litigation, February 28, 2018
• Spokeo-Round 3: The Ninth Circuit Finds Alleged Statutory Violation Sufficiently “Concrete” To Satisfy Article III Standing, August 29, 2017
• You Can’t Always Get What You Want-Second Circuit Affirms Parties Can Bargain Away TCPA Right To Revoke Consent To Automated Calls, July 12, 2017

Eye on Privacy Blog Posts

• Six Things You Need to Know Before Collecting Biometric Information, June 2, 2016

FCC Law Blog Posts

• D.C. Circuit Hears Challenge To Federal Communications Commission’s 2018 Restoring Internet Freedom Order, February 4, 2019
• Supreme Court Poised To Alter TCPA Landscape With Review Of Key Term 'Advertisement', November 17, 2018
• As The “Net Neutrality” World Turns . . . . November 7, 2018
• Lucia Is Likely To Have Little Impact On Waning FCC Adjudications, July 17, 2018
• FCC Seeks “Large Step” Toward Advancing Broadband Infrastructure Goals With Draft One-Touch Make-Ready Order, July 16, 2018
• Back To The Future: FCC Returns To Light Touch Regulation Of The Internet, June 13, 2018
• Once Bitten, Twice Shy: FCC Revisits Its Telemarketing Regulations In Light Of The DC Circuit’s Decision Striking Down Core Requirements, June 1, 2018
• Ninth Circuit Removes FTC From The Beat: Agency Lacks Authority To Police Common Carriers Engaged In Non-Common Carrier Activities, September 8, 2016
• Sixth Circuit Rejects FCC’s Effort To Preempt State Regulation Of Municipal Broadband Providers, August 11, 2016
• Patient Zero - Public Knowledge Seeks FCC Review of A New “Zero Rated” Service, March 14, 2016
• FCC Warns Broadband Internet Service Providers Of Coming Expanded Title II Privacy Regulation, May 29, 2015
• Cyberspace Oddity: The FCC Regulates Internet Services as Common Carrier Telecommunications Services, 'Protecting and Promoting the Open Internet,' February 27, 2015
• The Eleventh Circuit Reaffirms FCC’s Authority To Coordinate National TCPA Policy And Ensure Uniformity Of Enforcement in Mais v. Gulf Coast Collection Bureau, October 16, 2014
• Ninth Circuit Thinks Inside the Bun, Applies Traditional Agency Principles To Dismiss Putative TCPA Class Action Claims Against Taco Bell Corp. July 17 2014
• Call Me Maybe?: The New TCPA Position Announced by The Federal Communications Commission in Nigro v. Mercantile Adjustment Bureau, July 7, 2014
• Supreme Court Sides with Broadcasters in Aereo Decision, June 30, 2014
• North Carolina Court Issues First Decision Controlling Coop Pole Attachment Rates, May 29, 2014
• Once More Unto the Breach: the FCC Calls for Comments on Revamping Net Neutrality Regulations, May 16, 2014
• Twice Bitten But Not Shy, The FCC Is Handed The DC Circuit’s Prescription for Internet Regulation, January 20, 2014

Media Mentions

•Appeal Of Charter’s Exit From Tower Suit Premature: 7th Circ.
Law360 , April 5, 2019
•Time Warner Tells Texas Justices Utility's Fees Discriminatory
Law360 , January 24, 2019
•Lawyers: Legal forecast uncertain for broadcast streaming service Locast
S&P Global Marken Intelligence , October 4, 2018
•U.S. Is Expanding Power to Block Chinese Firms. HNA Was Already No Match.
The New York Times , August 2, 2018
•An Uncertain Future for Administrative Law Judges at the FCC
S&P Global Market Intelligence , July 26, 2018
•Analysis: FCC's Character Concerns Imperil More than Sinclair's Tribune Deal
Broadcasting & , July 20, 2018
•An Uncertain Future for Administrative Law Judges at the FCC
S&P Global Market Intelligence , June 27, 2018
•Satellite Operator Blasts 'Baseless' Challenge To $1M Award
•Law360: DC Circ. Partly Strikes Down FCC's TCPA Expansion
March 16, 2018
•Developments to Watch After the Net Neutrality Vote
Law360 , December 15, 2017
•Top 4 Groups Lobbying The FCC
Law360 , December 5, 2017
•What We Know About The Upcoming Net Neutrality Vote
Law360 , November 21, 2017
•Defamation Lawsuit Involving Rival Tungsten Product Manufacturers Brought to Pennsylvania Federal Court
Pennsylvania Record , November 14, 2017
•Net Neutrality Comments Marked By Duplicates, Study Says
Law360 , August 30, 2017
•UGV Vendors Take National Security Dispute to Court
Robotics Business Review , July 28, 2017
•Top 5 Groups Lobbying The FCC
Law360 , June 7, 2017
•FCC’s Net Neutrality Plan Sets Up Repeal Without Replace
Law360 , April 28, 2017
•FCC’s Infrastructure Votes Pave Way For Bold 5G Push
Law360 , April 21, 2017
•DC Circ.'s Delay On Net Neutrality Points To Wider Holdup
Law360 , March 15, 2017
•Zero-Rating Compliance: Easy as Pai?
Telco Transformation , March 6, 2017
•New FCC Looks Poised To Overrule Local Barriers To 5G
Law360 , February 9, 2017
•Telecom Cases To Watch In 2017
Law360 , January 2, 2017
•Set-Top Box Plan Likely To Headline Active FCC Meeting
Law360 , September 28, 2016
•FCC's Municipal Broadband Loss Cuts Off Policy Options
Law360 , August 17, 2016
•Telecom Cases To Watch For The Rest Of 2016
Law360 , July 13, 2016
•The Biggest Telecom Cases So Far In 2016
Law360 , July 8, 2016
•Net Neutrality: What’s Next for FCC’s Open Internet Rules
Variety , June 17, 2016
•Is the net neutrality fight over?
Cnet , June 15, 2016
•Telecoms Proceed With Leaner Baltimore Rate Hike Suit
Law360 , June 15, 2016
•Net Neutrality Win Is Vindication For Wheeler’s FCC
Law360 , June 14, 2016
•Net Neutrality Opponents Weighing Next Move
Bloomberg BNA , June 14, 2016
•Sheppard Mullin Chases the Cool Quotient in D.C.
The National Law Journal , September 8, 2014

Speaking Engagements

• CMS’ Medicare Advantage Overpayment Rule Takes a Permanent Vacation: What’s Next for Payors and Providers Alike, Sheppard Mullin Healthcare Webinar, October 16, 2018


•CMS’ Medicare Advantage Overpayment Rule Takes a Permanent Vacation: What’s Next for Payors and Providers Alike
Sheppard Mullin Healthcare Webinar
October 16, 2018


•Nota Bene Episode 14: Net Neutrality Essentials with Paul Werner
December 5, 2018

Areas of Practice (13)

  • Litigation
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Appellate
  • International Reach
  • International Arbitration
  • Privacy and Cybersecurity
  • Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)
  • Government Contracts, Investigations & International Trade
  • False Claims Act
  • Automotive
  • Communications
  • Healthcare
  • Social Media and Games

Education & Credentials

Contact Information:
202.747.1931  Phone
202.747.3817  Fax
University Attended:
University of California, Los Angeles, B.A., summa cum laude, 1999
Law School Attended:
Vanderbilt University Law School, J.D., Editor in Chief, Vanderbilt Journal of Entertainment Law & Practice, 2002, Order of the Coif, 2002
Year of First Admission:
District of Columbia; Virginia; United States Supreme Court; U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit; U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit; U.S. District Court, District of Columbia; U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Virginia; U.S. District Court, District of Colorado


•Federal Communications Bar Association
•The Historical Society of the District of Columbia Circuit


Peer Reviews

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*Peer Reviews provided before April 15, 2008 are not displayed.

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Washington, District of Columbia

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