Thomas McLish

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

$ $$$

New Hampshire Avenue Northwest 1333
Washington 20036 DC US

Thomas P. McLish is an experienced commercial litigator with a special focus on cases involving government contract disputes, including bid protests and matters involving allegations of fraud or false claims. He has represented defense, construction, electronics and other companies in complex lawsuits involving disputes with the federal government and other contractors. His experience also includes advising clients on government contract issues arising in M&A transactions.

Thomas litigates before U.S. appellate and district courts, state courts, the Court of Federal Claims, federal boards of contract appeals and arbitration panels. He has handled government contract disputes before various U.S. agencies, including the General Services Administration; the departments of Defense, Navy, Air Force, Army, Interior and Homeland Security; and as bid protests before the Government Accountability Office.

His broad litigation experience also includes defense of securities fraud lawsuits, intellectual property litigation and consumer class actions.From 1990 to 1995, Thomas was a trial attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Division, Commercial Litigation Branch. In that position, he handled civil contract, fraud and federal labor law disputes, including major weapons system procurement, construction and Fifth Amendment “takings.”


  • Focuses on complex litigation in state and federal courts, with an emphasis on government contract and False Claims Act matters.

Representative Work:

  • Acting for the manufacturer of military vehicles in litigation with the Department of the Army at the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals (ASBCA).
  • Representing a joint venture that built and operated dining facilities for U.S. troops in Iraq in a claim against the U.S. Department of the Army at the ASBCA, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.
  • Representing clients in a multibillion-dollar federal lawsuit alleging bid-rigging in connection with the Venezuelan national oil company.
  • Assisting an owner (a quasi-public entity in New York State) in terminating a contractor for default, ensuring the surety’s compliance with its performance bond and defending subsequent lawsuits against our client by the original contractor and the completion contractor.
  • Representing a concessions contractor at Yosemite National Park in a lawsuit against the National Park Service in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims involving more than $50 million in alleged damages for breach of contract.
  • Representing a major consumer electronics manufacturer in a False Claims Act litigation involving allegations that products sold to the government were not compliant with the Trade Agreements Act.


  • Board member, Council for Court Excellence.


  • J.D., Columbia Law School, 1988
  • B.A., Claremont McKenna College, cum laude, 1986


  • U.S.D.C., Southern District of New York

Bar Admissions:

  • District of Columbia
  • New York


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New Hampshire Avenue Northwest 1333
Washington 20036 DC US
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Lina Stillman

Broadway 42
New York 10004 NY US