We have broad experience litigating and arbitrating all types of disputes in the aerospace industry, including disputes emanating from the design, development, and manufacturing of satellites and rockets as well as satellite launches and operations. We also have broad experience arbitrating disputes between satellite owners and lessees. We are intimately familiar with the typical terms and provisions of complex contracts that drive these activities and from which many legal disputes arise.
Many aerospace disputes involve claims of patent infringement and trade secret misappropriation. These often involve complex technology. No technology is too complicated for our lawyers. Over 125 of our lawyers have engineering or hard science degrees. A number of our lawyers have degrees in aerospace engineering. One of our lawyers was an operations analyst for Rockwell International, responsible for the design of fuel consumption algorithms for the airborne laser. Another one of our lawyers, a former Air Force Officer, worked with the Air Force’s Global Positioning System (GPS) program on long range design and planning issues and was the military officer in charge of organizing and overseeing independent review boards for all satellite projects under the purview of the Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center.
We have worked with all types of highly technical documents generated by the satellite/aerospace industry, including technical specifications and requirements, preliminary and critical design reviews, integration and test plans, space qualification documents, material review board minutes and documentation, non-conformance reports related to the manufacturing process, discrepancy review board minutes and documents, action items and closure documentation, documentation related to satellite performance (e.g., satellite telemetry data) and documentation generated in anomaly investigations.
Quinn Emanuel mourns the loss of one of its name partners, Bill Urquhart. Bill joined the firm 31 years ago when it was just a few lawyers in downtown Los Angeles. Bill was a visionary and helped lead a transformation of the firm from a small litigation boutique to the largest and most successful litigation firm in the world, with over 800 lawyers in 23 offices on four continents.
In his legal practice, Bill was a sage counselor and trusted advisor for both plaintiffs and defendants, and for numerous Fortune 100 companies in their most important disputes — matters that usually involved tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions, of dollars. Over the years he advised IBM, Hughes, Johnson Controls, CNA, Nokia and Qualcomm, among many many others.
For the many people at the firm who were fortunate to know Bill, he was more than a visionary partner and excellent lawyer, he was also a friend, who lived and loved life. He was loved and will be missed.
He leaves behind his wife Mary and 6 children, and our thoughts are with them in this time of grief.