Matthew Skanchy is Counsel at Wilkinson Stekloff. He is an experienced trial attorney and has played key roles on multiple trial teams taking cases to verdict in federal, state, and administrative courts. He is skilled at trial strategy and preparation, including managing trial teams and preparing expert and fact witnesses to testify at trial. Most recently, Matthew represented Altria Group, Inc. against consumer protection claims pending in the Northern District of California related to Altria’s investment in JUUL Labs, Inc., including in the first bellwether trial, and is currently representing the NCAA in putative class action lawsuits challenging the NCAA’s rules regarding student-athletes’ use of their names, images, and likenesses (“NIL”).
In addition, Matthew has notable experience briefing pre- and post-trial motions and appeals for a diverse array of clients. He recently represented the Executive Council of the Habematolel Pomo of Upper Lake in Hengle v. Asner, a consumer class action filed in the Eastern District of Virginia in April 2019, where motions practice resulted in plaintiffs dropping all claims for money damages against the Tribe’s economic development arms. The dismissal of plaintiffs’ injunctive relief claim under RICO was affirmed by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals. He also has significant internal investigation experience, including conducting numerous witness interviews.
Matthew maintains an active pro bono practice, primarily representing clients in post-conviction and constitutional matters in state and federal courts. In this role, he has delivered opening and closing statements and examined multiple witnesses during evidentiary hearings. Most recently, Matthew secured the compassionate release of an incarcerated client who had been in custody for 29 years, since he was just 17 years old. Matthew has repeatedly been recognized for his pro bono service on the D.C. Court of Appeals’ Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll.
Before joining Wilkinson Stekloff, Matthew served as a law clerk to the Honorable Carolyn B. McHugh of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and the Honorable Robert G. Doumar of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. Matthew attended the University of Virginia School of Law, where he served on the Senior Editorial Board of the Virginia Law Review and was selected to mentor first-year law students in legal research and writing as a Hardy C. Dillard Writing Fellow.
- Undergraduate: Brigham Young University, B.A., magna cum laude (2012)
- Law: University of Virginia School of Law, J.D. (2015); Senior Editorial Board, Virginia Law Review; Articles Editor, Virginia Journal of Law and Technology (2013); Hardy C. Dillard Legal Writing Fellow
- Judge Carolyn B. McHugh, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
- Judge Robert G. Doumar, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia
- Member of trial team defending Altria Group, Inc. and certain of its subsidiaries in the first government entity bellwether trial, brought by the San Francisco Unified School District, in multi-district litigation arising out of Altria’s minority investment in JUUL Labs, Inc. On May 10, 2023, just one day after the team completed cross-examinations in plaintiff’s case and the defense case was about to begin, plaintiffs agreed to a global settlement with Altria that resolved the personal injury, consumer class action, and government entity cases brought in over 6,000 e-vapor cases in state and federal courts.
- Member of trial team defending Altria Group, Inc. in an administrative trial related to the FTC’s challenge of Altria’s $12.8 billion minority investment in JUUL Labs. Obtained a full dismissal of claims against Altria by the FTC’s Chief Administrative Law Judge.
- Member of the trial team for Monsanto in Hardeman v. Monsanto, the first federal-court trial over allegations that Roundup causes Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. The jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff. Matthew has continued to represent Monsanto in various state court actions related to Roundup.
- Member of the trial team for Bayer that won a complete defense verdict in Cooney v. Janssen, the third state-court bellwether trial involving Xarelto in Philadelphia’s Court of Common Pleas.
- Represented the Executive Council of the Habematolel Pomo of Upper Lake in Hengle v. Asner, a consumer class action filed in the Eastern District of Virginia in April 2019. After motions practice resulted in plaintiffs dropping all claims for money damages against the Tribe’s economic development arms and the dismissal of plaintiffs’ injunctive relief claim under RICO, the parties reached a nationwide class action settlement in which the Tribe paid $0 into the settlement fund and $0 in attorneys’ fees.
- Member of pretrial team representing Facebook, Oculus VR, and individual defendants in Zenimax Media et al v. Oculus VR et al., a matter filed in the Northern District of Texas that went to trial. Plaintiffs sought $6 billion in damages based on allegations that the defendants improperly used their trade secrets and other intellectual property in designing the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset. The trial team obtained a defense verdict for Facebook and partial defense verdicts for the remaining defendants, including the jury’s rejection of plaintiffs’ lead claim of trade secret misappropriation.
- Member of the team representing Maximus, Inc. in a purported securities fraud class action in the Eastern District of Virginia. Assisted with appellate briefing and oral argument before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit that resulted in a successful defense of the district court’s dismissal of Plaintiffs’ claims in their entirety.
- Prior to joining the firm, was a member of the trial team for Pfizer that obtained a complete defense verdict in the second jury trial in the national litigation alleging that the company failed to warn that its anti-depressant medicine Zoloft may cause birth defects.