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International Co-Counsel and Foreign Local Counsel Resources

InternationalCounsel delivers cross-border and US domestic legal services both through its international counsel team members as well as through its local counsel resources in Europe, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and elsewhere. InternationalCounsel is a law practice with a 16-year track record backed by malpractice insurance, not an interim placement firm, and is able to deliver the pooled best practice experience of lawyers who have handled some of the most sensitive matters in many of the world’s murkiest markets.

We have done so on behalf of leading international companies and our team members have often worked together both as part of InternationalCounsel and in various combinations of lawyer-client relationships. For example, team members have been former clients and former clients have become team members.


International Counsel Senior Lawyer Resources and Management

Since our formation in 1997, InternationalCounsel team members have included lawyers with the following in-house backgrounds:

Importantly, ongoing oversight of client matters comes from one of our senior attorneys to assure prompt delivery of services with a consistent level of quality and results. Currently leading our service delivery and client relations is David Laverty, one of the firm’s co-founders. InternationalCounsel team members are added depending on the needs of our clients and projects, and are governed by our practices and procedures, including as related to conflicts of interest and ethical practices.


David A. Laverty

+ 1 312 575 0601


India and China, as Well as the US and 30+ Other Countries

Practice Areas

  • Corporate and Commercial Agreements
    • Acquisitions
    • Joint Ventures and Other Equity Investments
    • Manufacturing Agreements
    • Licenses
    • Agency and Distribution Agreements
  • Market Entry Strategies and Structures
  • Worldwide Product Risk Analysis and Warranty Compliance
  • e-Commerce and Online Compliance
  • Cross-Border Regulatory Issues
  • International Terminations, Wind-downs and Disputes

David has more than 20 years of experience with contracts, investment and market entry matters while based in Seoul, New York, London and Chicago. Through his work in the United States as well as in Asia, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and elsewhere, David assists companies to better and more cost-effectively integrate US and foreign law capabilities into their expansion efforts.

Prior to co-founding InternationalCounsel, David created the international counsel role and directed international legal affairs for Kmart Corporation and its then-subsidiaries, including The Sports Authority, Borders Books and Music and Office Max. His international law firm practice has included Marks & Murase in New York (a predecessor firm of Bingham McCutchen LLP) and Lee & Ko in Seoul, Korea.

David’s clients with the firm have included Motorola, Samsung Electronics, Borders Books and Music and Corbis Corporation (Bill Gates’ global image licensing and distribution company).

Leadership Roles

Inter-Pacific Bar Association (IPBA), Asia’s leading corporate and commercial lawyers’ organization. Former Officer and Board Member

Association for Corporate Growth, Chicago, a 1,000 member association of corporate dealmakers. International Committee. Former Officer, Board Member and Co-Chair, International Committee and Conference

Education and Bar Membership

University of Michigan Law School, JD
University of Michigan, B.A. (magna cum laude in economics)
Admitted to practice in Illinois

Selected updates

Capturing Opportunity and Controlling Legal Risk: India’s Outbound Deals in Challenging Times, Halsbury’s Law Monthly, New Delhi, January, 2009

Acquisitions and Foreign Equity Investments in Indian Companies, Association for Corporate Growth international bulletins, Chicago, 2008 and 2007

Web Site and e-Commerce Legal Issues in China, Localization Institute, San Francisco, 2006 (email info@internationalcounsel.com for a copy)

Cross-Border Agency and Distribution Agreements, Atlas Legal and Chicago Bar Association - Toronto and Chicago, 2005


Examples of other InternationalCounsel team members are the following highly-capable professionals with senior experience:

Bert Sugayan is an outstanding former in-house international executive with a long history of supporting cross-border corporate and commercial matters in Asia, Latin America, Europe and elsewhere.

  • As a former general counsel of Corbis Corporation , the Bill Gates-owned worldwide digital and analog image licensing company, Bert worked with InternationalCounsel on international agent, licensing and online solutions for Corbis. Though Bert and David Laverty also shared a common experience in Korea, their Corbis work together marked the beginning of a long collaboration with the firm and contributes to a solid foundation for our global contracts and other work together.
  • In addition to his work as an in-house legal executive, Bert has a proven track record in managing and growing successful new and established business ventures. This experience as a business executive contributes to his sixth sense for creating corporate contracts and other programs that limit legal risk and save corporate dollars, yet serve the needs of business teams that need practical and understandable solutions for implementing contracts and other initiatives.
  • Such business executive experience has most recently included Bert’s position as President of North American Operations for Oxford Computer Group , senior management roles at Getty Images and Corbis Corporation , and an earlier stint as Vice President and General Counsel at ARIS Corporation, an IT services firm located in Seattle, Washington.
  • Bert also founded Snohomish Business Law LLC, a provider of practical business law advice to start-ups, entrepreneurs and emerging companies, as well as Free Vector Advisors, which assists companies with their growth as well as their exit strategies.

Thomas P. Holden is a commercial attorney with more than 25 years of unusually broad in-house international and U.S. domestic experience in the outsourcing, consulting, pharmaceutical and telecommunications industries.

  • With Motorola, Inc., his roles included Lead Asian Counsel in Hong Kong for 6 years and General Counsel of the Network Management Group for 8 years
  • In this divisional General Counsel role, Tom was responsible for all legal aspects of forming, managing and operating cellular telephone joint ventures in more than 25 countries in both developed (such as Japan and Korea) and particularly developing economies (ranging from China and India to Latin and Central America, Asia and Africa
  • From Motorola, Tom became Senior International Counsel with Abbott Laboratories, with responsibility for international mergers and acquisitions, in-bound and out-bound licensing activity and general commercial counseling
  • To add to his telecommunications and life science experience base, Tom then became Outsourcing Counsel for Accenture LLP, responsible for the legal and regulatory support for Accenture’s worldwide procurement services outsourcing business
  • This corporate and commercial experience was built on an earlier foundation in litigation with a well-regarded Chicago law firm, giving Tom added sensitivity to how to avoid and resolve disputes and carrying over to his current interest in mediation and arbitration
  • Tom’s educational background includes a B.S. in Business Economics from Purdue University (he was on Purdue’s  Big 10 football team) and a law degree from The John Marshall Law School

Practice Areas and Geographies

  • Cross-Border and U.S. Transactions, Global Experience Base
  • Corporate and Commercial Agreements
  • Joint Venture and Outsourcing Deals
  • M&A Purchases, Sales and Due Diligence
  • Market Entry Strategies
  • Work with 40+ Countries, Including While Based in Hong Kong

Xiaoming Zhang, based in the Shanghai area, is fluent in Mandarin and English and is admitted to practice law in China (since 1996).

  • Until April, 2011, he worked as a legal director for a United Technologies company in China, had previously been part of Chinese law firms in Shanghai and Suzhou and is currently affiliated with the Capital Equity Legal Group. Xiaoming also received a U.S. legal degree from Northwestern Law School in Chicago and also from East China University of Politics and Law in Shanghai. After graduating from Northwestern in 2006, Xiaoming joined InternationalCounsel in the U.S. before returning to China. He supports InternationalCounsel in China for US, European and other companies expanding into China, as well as for Chinese companies expanding into the US and Europe.


Foreign Local Counsel

As discussed in our Practice Summary, while our approach is to handle much of the structuring, drafting and negotiating of projects based on our internal skill-set and access to local law materials, many of our projects require the input of on-the-ground resources in our clients' target countries.

Up-to-the-minute guidance on applicable law and practice as well as its critical real-world application is essential to the process. We have also developed ways to manage and control foreign local counsel resources at substantial cost savings to our clients.

Similar to the practice of major multinational companies, we continually monitor the capabilities of outstanding lawyers in Europe, Asia, Latin America and elsewhere. When these lawyers have proven themselves to be both excellent sources of substantive advice as well as sensitive to our needs for responsiveness and cost-control, the lawyers are added to our working group of "preferred partners."

We also evaluate such lawyers in accordance with best practices in handling confidentiality, conflict avoidance and other ethical matters.

The fee statements of our local counsel colleagues are integrated with ours, allowing for our review and close management of overall costs and resource allocation.



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