Joel McElvain

King & Spalding LLP

$ $$$

Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest 1700
Washington 20006 DC US

Joel McElvain is a partner in our health care practice. He has over twenty years of experience as a litigator with the Department of Justice, having handled some of the DOJ’s most complex and challenging civil matters.

As an Assistant Branch Director in the Department’s Federal Programs Branch, he supervised the defense of the Department of Health and Human Services in cases challenging agency programs under the Medicare and Medicaid statutes, the Affordable Care Act, and other statutes.

Joel was part of the team of attorneys at DOJ that successfully defended the constitutionality of the ACA in National Federation of Independent Business v Sebelius, 567 U.S. 519 (2012), and that successfully defended an important regulation addressing the ACA’s system of health insurance subsidies in King v. Burwell, 135 S. Ct. 2480 (2015). He also briefed and argued numerous cases arising under the Medicare Act in the federal district courts and courts of appeals.

In 2013, Joel and his team received the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service for the successful defense of the ACA in NFIB, which the Justice Department called a “landmark piece of legislation.”  Joel also received the Civil Division’s Michael F. Hertz Award for Exceptional Professionalism and Outstanding Performance in 2014 for his work in King and other cases.


  • J.D., Harvard Law School
  • B.A., Williams College


  • California
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia


Rate : $$$$

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Pennsylvania Avenue Northwest 1700
Washington 20006 DC US
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