Davis Polk partner Uzo Asonye was featured in Vault’s 2023 edition of “Practice Area Insights: White Collar Defense & Internal Investigations.” In the guide, attorneys from law firms with top-ranked White Collar Defense & Internal Investigations practices share insights about their work, including details about the practice area and what a typical day entails.

Uzo discussed his role as a lead counsel on various white collar matters along with how he oversees the investigative and/or defense team and directs the overall strategy. He explained that a typical day may consist of: meeting with clients to discern the underlying facts, preparing for and conducting key witness interviews and/or depositions, oral argument and other court appearances and hearings, presenting to – or interacting with – government regulators, advising the client, reviewing key documents and evidence, drafting and editing briefs and investigative reports, working with expert witnesses, and prepping for and managing trials. He also teaches and mentors associates and collaborates with counsel and partners.

When asked what training, classes, experience or skills development he would recommend to someone who wishes to enter the practice area, Uzo said, “There are many valuable professional experiences and courses that will help prepare law students for a career as a white collar defense attorney. Law students may wish to intern at the DOJ, a U.S. Attorneys’ Office, the SEC, the FTC or other government entities to gain firsthand experience in the regulatory and investigative process. In addition, an internship or clerkship with a federal or state judge can provide a unique opportunity to observe trials, understand the adjudicative process and hone research and writing skills.”

Uzo added that law school courses that are particularly useful to white collar defense include Trial Practice, Appellate Practice, Federal and State Courts, Securities Regulation, Criminal Procedure, Evidence, advanced legal writing courses, clinics and other courses related to prosecution.

Practice Area Insights: White Collar Defense & Internal Investigations,” Vault (March 25, 2024) (subscription required)