Alyssa Barnard-Yanni

Senior Associate

New York

Alyssa focuses on briefing on high-stakes issues at both the trial and appellate level.

Her litigation work spans a wide range of subject areas, from complex commercial litigation to white collar criminal defense.  At the trial level, Alyssa has drafted innumerable dispositive and evidentiary motions, and argued numerous motions in state court in a multi-billion dollar products liability action. She was also an integral part of the criminal defense team representing a defendant in the Southern District of New York, as one of the principal drafters of the motion to dismiss the indictment and the motions in limine filed in the case. At the appellate level, Alyssa has drafted filings of every stripe: writs of mandamus, petitions for discretionary review, amicus briefs, and of course merits appeals.  Alyssa also advises clients on thorny issues outside of litigation, ranging from drafting white papers advocating against criminal charges to brainstorming ways to terminate a licensing agreement, and more.

Alyssa maintains an active pro bono practice focusing primarily on criminal law matters. Among her pro bono work, she has argued before the New York Appellate Division on behalf of defendants challenging convictions for ineffective assistance of trial counsel and insufficiency of the evidence; drafted cert- and merits-stage amicus briefs in the Supreme Court case Quarles v. United States; and co-drafted an amicus brief to the Second Circuit urging that failure to advise naturalized citizens of the denaturalization risks of a plea violates the Sixth Amendment.

Alyssa served as a law clerk to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in the October 2019 Term. Before that, she clerked for Judge Alison J. Nathan on the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York and Judge Robert A. Katzmann on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

  • Alyssa's engagements have included:

    United States v. Middendorf et al. Represented an individual defendant in the Southern District of New York facing charges of wire fraud, authoring a motion to dismiss arguing, as a matter of first impression, that the misappropriation of government information does not constitute wire fraud--a position later adopted by the U.S. Solicitor General. 

    In re DISH Network.  Successfully petitioned the Federal Circuit for a writ of mandamus ordering the district court to transfer a patent suit out of the Western District of Texas.

    WhatsApp v. NSO Group. Represented a group of technology companies filing an amicus brief to explain how granting sovereign immunity to the NSO Group for its sale of cyberweapons would increase systemic risk in cyberspace.

    People v. HeadleyWon a reversal of an attempted robbery conviction based on insufficient evidence in the New York Appellate Division, First Department. 

    Eni v. Transocean. Secured vacatur of a $200 million judgment in the Fifth Circuit regarding the termination of a deepwater oil rig contract.

    Bernard v. Indiana Medical Licensing Board. Defeated a motion to enforce a third-party subpoena that would have required a major university to disclose raw survey data underlying university researchers' academic studies.