Railroad Regulatory and Operations

Railroad law is a complex specialty area which our attorneys have successfully navigated for over 28 years. Specifically, we represent specialty contractors for Class I railroads performing track construction, track rehabilitation and maintenance throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico. One of our clients was one of the first privately held companies in North America to provide passenger rail service in direct competition with Amtrak. We negotiated and created the first commuter passenger train operations contract between a privately held company and a transit agency in North America. That contract became the template for future commuter passenger train contracts and has been utilized by other companies throughout the U.S. Additionally, we provide a broad range of railroad-related legal advice, including counsel regarding:

  • Construction of light rail and commuter passenger rail lines
  • Maintenance of way
  • Maintenance of railcars and locomotives
  • Ultra-sonic testing of rails per Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) rules and regulations to discover defects in rails
  • Representation of commuter passenger train operation service providers from the East to the West Coast
  • Defense of FELA (Federal Employers Liability Act) lawsuits
  • Negotiations of leases of railroad related equipment, rolling stock and locomotives
  • Negotiation of service contracts with all of the Class I railroads and various short-line railroads in the U.S., Canada and Mexico
  • Negotiations of labor agreements with various Unions
  • Negotiations of joint venture agreements
  • Handling of various insurance-related claims on coverage issues, including:
    • Personal injury
    • Wrongful death
    • Workers' compensation
    • FELA claims
  • Practice Group Members
  • Representative Engagements

    • Serve as the General Counsel to a multi-state and multi-national rail related corporation.
    • Represented a joint venture and successfully obtained a $33m [1] award in payment to that joint venture relative to the construction of a double-track rail project in South Florida.
    • Represented the contractor on a light rail construction project in Phoenix, and was successful in obtaining a DRB decision in excess of $10m [1], based on a claim that the owner had failed to provide the contractor with full and complete design drawings and underground investigation.
    • Representing a joint venture in Seattle in arbitration proceedings, whereby the contractor asserts the owner failed to provide the contractor with a full and complete set of constructible design drawings, which resulted in contractor incurring additional costs and expenses.

    [1] Past results afford no guarantee of future results. Every case is different and must be judged on its own merit

  • Related Practice Areas