Scott P. Lewis

Senior Counsel

Tel. 617.621.6560

Corporations, colleges and universities, and dozens of governmental entities from coast to coast turn to Scott for his decades of experience litigating complex commercial and regulatory cases.  His areas of focus are:

  • Airport Law: Scott has built a national airport practice, representing over 100 governmental airport owners in federal regulatory compliance matters, civil litigation, and airport-airline negotiations. He has successfully argued many closely watched, precedent-setting cases for airport owners, including leading antitrust and RICO cases in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, important preemption cases in the Third and Ninth Circuits, and rate-setting appeals in the D.C. Circuit.  Scott has also led the successful defense of several “rocket docket” complaints at USDOT as well as countless Part 16 complaints at FAA.  He has also drafted and negotiated airport-airline agreements or rate ordinances at many of the country’s large and medium hub airports.
  • Civil Rights and Law Reform Litigation: Throughout his career, Scott has been a vigorous civil rights advocate.  For many years, his focus was on the rights of people in state custody, and Scott brought a number of important institutional reform cases.  More recently, Scott represented 46 states in complex arbitration cases against Big Tobacco, and he has been the lead advocate for the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and other public health organizations in federal court litigation involving health-related graphic warnings and corrective statements to be given by the major cigarette manufacturers.  Scott led a team of lawyers who recently secured a nationwide injunction against the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development when it sought to rewrite the rules governing “disparate impact” housing discrimination claims at the end of the Trump Administration, and he is also the lead lawyer for the members of the board of the Jackson (Mississippi) Municipal Airport Authority who are challenging a race-based state statute that would strip the City of Jackson of its control of the airport.
  • Commercial and Regulatory Litigation: Scott has decades of experience handling complex cases for major corporations in the biotech, public utility, and insurance industries.  He has been recognized as a leading “bet the company” litigator for many years.  These cases have often involved high stakes disputes (including class actions) arising in connection with the development or marketing of pharmaceuticals, the remediation of contamination, the sale of allegedly defective products, or insurance coverage.  For many years, Scott also served as lead counsel to the automobile and workers’ compensation insurance industry in rate-setting proceedings in Massachusetts.

These are just a few of the many varied and often precedent-setting cases that Scott has litigated in both state and federal trial and appeals courts over the years.  Scott has argued free speech cases for a wide range of clients, from prisoners to a local university; defended a novel artist’s “moral rights” suit against a major mutual fund company; and structured the successful defense of multi-million dollar claims against a leading biotech company in the courts of Cyprus.

Scott continues to be an active participant in the civil rights and anti-tobacco communities and frequently takes on politically-charged cases.

Honors

The Best Lawyers in America, Commercial and Bet-the-Company Litigation, 2007 - 2022
Massachusetts Super Lawyers, 2012-2020

Affiliations

Lawyers for Civil Rights Boston, Board of Directors Member, former Chair

Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, former General Counsel

Cambridge Planning Board, former Member

Admissions

Massachusetts

U.S. Supreme Court

U.S. Courts of Appeals, First, Third, Fifth, Ninth and D.C. Circuits

U.S. District Courts, District of Massachusetts and Northern District of Florida

Education

Harvard Law School, J.D. 1974 cum laude
Beale Prize

Yale College, B.A. 1971 magna cum laude
Honors in Economics

Complex Litigation

  • On behalf of a variety of public health advocates, persuaded the federal court to order the FDA to promulgate a long-delayed regulation mandating graphic health warnings on cigarette packs.
  • Structured the successful defense of massive claims against Genzyme Corporation in a case litigated in Cyprus.
  • Won a campus free speech case for Tufts University in the SJC.
  • Prevailed for Fidelity Investments in a precedent-setting case involving artists’ moral rights in both the First Circuit and SJC.
  • Served as lead counsel to 46 states in billion dollar tobacco litigation.
  • Won one of Massachusetts’ leading consumer class actions in the Supreme Judicial Court.
  • Served as lead counsel in many prisoners’ rights actions involving free speech and conditions of confinement.
  • Successfully defended a municipality’s ban on nerve gas testing by the U.S. Army.

 Airport Matters

  • Successfully defended labor peace provisions of a controversial ordinance at Los Angeles International Airport that was challenged all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Persuaded the California state court to reject a state constitutional challenge to landing fees at Santa Monica Municipal Airport.
  • Convinced the California state court to reject a claim by the City of Ontario that its sale of Ontario International Airport to the City of Los Angeles was null and void.
  • Litigated closely-watched, precedent-setting cases for airport owners, including leading antitrust and RICO cases in the First Circuit, an important preemption case in the Third Circuit and rate-setting appeals in the D.C. Circuit.
  • Successfully defended numerous regulatory complaints at the FAA.
  • Represented many large, medium and small hub airport in the negotiation and drafting of airport-airline use and lease agreements.

Scott speaks at conferences throughout the United States on complex litigation and airport regulation.

Scott has taught a seminar at Columbia Law School and spoken at various national conferences about the moral rights of artists.