DANIEL L. GEYSER
CHAIR, SUPREME COURT AND APPELLATE PRACTICE
Daniel L. Geyser focuses on complex and high-stakes appellate litigation, representing clients in the Supreme Court of the United States and in federal courts of appeals nationwide. He was one of only a handful of lawyers in private practice to argue three cases in the Supreme Court’s latest Term (OT 2017), winning two that industry experts said could not be won.
Mr. Geyser is among a select group of lawyers who regularly handles significant cases in the Supreme Court. He handled seven merits cases in the Court’s past three Terms, arguing four of those cases. His petitions are regularly featured as “Petition of the Day” on SCOTUSblog (the preeminent website devoted to Supreme Court practice, 2017-18), and he was recently named OT 2017’s “top performing” brief-writer among the Court’s repeat players (based on a 2018 empirical study using brief-analyzing software). Law360 named him a Legal Lion for one of his game-changing wins last Term, and he is lined up to argue four more merits cases this Term (OT 2018), personally handling over five percent of the Court’s merits docket. He is a three-time winner of the National Association of Attorneys General’s Best Brief Award for excellence in brief-writing before the Court (2008-09, 2011).
Beyond the Supreme Court, Mr. Geyser handles high-stakes appellate matters nationwide, arguing major cases in the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Second, Third, Fifth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth (including before the en banc court), Eleventh, and Federal Circuits, and briefing still other cases before the First, Sixth, and D.C. Circuits. In addition to an active federal practice, Mr. Geyser has handled landmark appeals in state courts, including arguing six times in the Texas Supreme Court.
Mr. Geyser represents both plaintiffs and defendants in virtually every major area of federal law. On behalf of plaintiffs, he has briefed cases and crafted legal strategy in matters generating over a half-billion in recovery. On behalf of defendants, he has won appeals in a sweeping range of disputes, often with eight- and nine-figure stakes. His subject-matter experience is extensive: he has briefed and argued major cases involving constitutional law (both individual rights and structural issues), bankruptcy, consumer protection, ERISA, securities, intellectual property (especially patents), arbitration, attorney’s fees, class actions, free speech, civil rights, administrative law, federal jurisdiction, federal preemption, products liability, antitrust, immigration, sovereign immunity, foreign affairs, criminal law, and taxation.
Before launching his own practice, Mr. Geyser was the appellate chair of a prominent litigation boutique, leading that firm to the National Law Journal’s “Appellate Hot List” and a national appellate ranking in Chambers & Partners. He also was an appellate partner in one of the nation’s top litigation firms, building its appellate practice while focusing especially on complex patent appeals and bankruptcy cases.
From 2007-2011, Mr. Geyser served in the Office of the Solicitor General of Texas, where he conducted and supervised appellate litigation for the State. In addition to handling his own docket, his experience in the office included advising other divisions on appellate and trial strategy, revising countless briefs in cases across all subject areas, and extensively preparing other attorneys (in moot courts and otherwise) for oral argument. In his last week on the job, Mr. Geyser argued before the Texas Supreme Court in Severance v. Patterson, one of the State’s most important cases in recent memory—a constitutional attack on the public’s historic access to open beaches; he had earlier won “a rare motion to rehear the case” (Austin American-Statesman, 2011). The same week, Mr. Geyser also won a major case in the U.S. Supreme Court, Sossamon v. Texas, involving Congress’s spending power and state sovereignty; Mr. Geyser wrote the State’s briefs in that case and crafted its core legal theories and appellate strategy. He was also the principal writer of the State’s invitation brief in Rhine v. Deaton, a case marking the very first time the U.S. Supreme Court called for a state solicitor general to file a brief expressing the views of a State.
Prior to his government tenure, Mr. Geyser practiced at an elite appellate boutique in Washington, D.C., and with a top appellate team in Los Angeles. He has received the State Bar of California’s Wiley W. Manuel Award for Pro Bono Legal Services (2006) and was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit Pro Bono Panel. Mr. Geyser has recently spoken on panels discussing "Legal Writing to Win" (Texas Bar, 2015), "Exceptional Legal Writing" (Texas Bar, 2013), the U.S. Supreme Court’s latest Term (State Bar College, 2017-2015 and 2012), constitutional litigation under the Bill of Rights (Texas Bar, 2013 and 2012), “The Roberts Court at 5 Years” (State Bar College, 2011), and “Appellate Brief Writing and Oral Argument” (Office of the Attorney General, 2011).
Mr. Geyser graduated Phi Beta Kappa, with honors and distinction, from Stanford University, and with honors from Harvard Law School, where he was the Notes Chair of the Harvard Law Review, a best-brief winner and oralist on the championship team of Harvard’s moot-court competition, and a research assistant to Professor Laurence H. Tribe, working on his academic writing and appellate docket. After law school, Mr. Geyser clerked for the Hon. Alex Kozinski of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
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Harvard Law School, J.D. (2002)
Stanford University, B.A. (1999)
Supreme Court of the United States
U.S. Court of Appeals, First Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals, Third 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, Eighth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals, D.C. Circuit
U.S. District Court, Central District of California
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas
U.S. District Court, District of Colorado
Texas State Bar
California State Bar