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Stanford Law School, J.D. (1984)

University of California at Riverside, B.A. in Philosophy (1980)


New York (1985)

California (1985)

Federal courts in California, New York and Washington, D.C.


Associate (1984-1995) and Counsel (1996-2000), Chadbourne & Parke LLP, New York City and Los Angeles


"Computer Spreadsheets in the Practice of Law," California Lawyer, June, 1984


California State Bar's Wiley W. Manuel Pro Bono Award (1990)

Chadbourne & Parke Pro Bono Award (1991)

For 16 years, Mr. Kelley has represented a wide range of clients -- from Fortune 50 corporations to small businesses and individuals -- in federal and state court litigation (both at the trial and appellate level), in arbitrations, in corporate investigations and in providing pre-litigation advice and counseling.  He is experienced in the areas of commercial and government contracts, antitrust, securities, and business torts.  

Mr. Kelley has represented numerous clients in cases that resulted in reported decisions in the areas of state contract law, federal contract law and the civil False Claims Act.  He has developed a special expertise in all areas of government contract law, from advising clients in preparing and submitting bids and proposals through handling disputes in the Boards of Contract Appeals, Court of Federal Claims and Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.  Mr. Kelley has also served as a private arbitrator in contract disputes.  Below are examples of the types of matters Mr. Kelley has handled:


  • defended a leading aerospace and defense firm against charges of defective pricing under the Truth in Negotiations Act

  • co-chaired recent trial in a case seeking multi-million dollar breach-of-contract damages from the Department of Energy regarding the management and operation of one of the nation's nuclear weapons plants

  • defended a major federal contractor against alleged violations of the False Claims Act

  • prosecuted a multi-million dollar tort claim against the Navy on behalf of a business, leading to full recovery, including recovery of lost profits

  • prosecuted numerous multi-million dollar contract claims against various agencies of the federal government, including requests for equitable adjustment and claims for delay and disruption

  • prosecuted bid protests in connection with numerous government agencies, including protests to the General Accounting Office

  • represented both prime contractors and subcontractors in negotiations and disputes with other contractors

  • prosecuted claims on behalf of a major government contractor regarding cost allowability and allocability

  • represented a subcontractor in a dispute with a prime contractor in connection with government allegations of defective pricing

  • represented a prime contractor in negotiations with both the government and a subcontractor in a dispute under the Truth in Negotiations Act


  • successfully defended a co-generation power producer against breach-of-contract and fraud charges amounting to $200 million

  • represented a major oil company through appeals in a landmark case upholding contractual forum-selection clauses

  • successfully defended a major airline in a libel suit

  • authored a successful brief to the California Supreme Court on behalf of a group of charities in a will contest


  • advised clients with respect to financing of government contracts, including advice regarding the Assignment of Claims Act and securitizing government contract payments

  • advised clients regarding government budgeting and appropriations, including advice regarding the Anti-Deficiency Act

  • conducted corporate investigations to determine the existence of civil or criminal wrongdoing

  • counseled clients with respect to antitrust laws, including the Robinson-Patman Act

  • conducted investigations into potential violations of federal ethics laws and regulations, including the Procurement Integrity Act

  • advised clients in preparation of bids and proposals for government contracts

  • analyzed new case law for impact on client's business

Mr. Kelley has also devoted considerable time throughout his career to representing pro bono clients. His efforts include obtaining political asylum for Central American refugees and successfully defending charter schools against the California Department of Education's attempts to devitalize the state's charter-school legislation.

Mr. Kelley is a member of the Orange County and Federal Bar Associations and the Federalist Society.

Contact William Kelley


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