Honigman Miller Launches Autonomous Vehicle Industry Group


Detroit-based Honigman Miller, a full-service global law firm, today announced the formation of an autonomous vehicle industry group, which includes a cross-disciplinary team of attorneys practicing in the firm’s corporate, intellectual property, and litigation departments.

Honigman officials says the new group aims to meet the growing demand for practical guidance as new laws and best practices are adopted in the autonomous vehicle industry. Traditional automotive OEMs, suppliers, IT companies, and strategic investment entities are all active in the autonomous space.

Honigman has hired top Federal Trade Commission (FTC) attorney Steve Wernikoff to co-lead the project with Honigman partner Tom Appledorn. Wernikoff has served as the FTC’s enforcement director in the office of technology research and investigation, and brings 17 years of experience in mobile and emerging technologies, privacy, data security, advertising, marketing, connected devices, and big data matters.

“Honigman is leading the charge to help clients with guidance and strategies for the complex legal, business, IP, and regulatory requirements related to autonomous vehicle technologies,” says Wernikoff. “We can help clients navigate the broad spectrum of issues and potential pitfalls throughout their product development and commercialization strategies.”

The industry group will focus on advising clients on the development, procurement, investment, patenting, use, and licensing of these new technologies. Additionally, Honigman lawyers will advise on related activities, including the creation and development of autonomous vehicle research, development, and testing facilities.

“The establishment of an Autonomous Vehicle industry group made perfect sense for us given our tremendous experience working with clients in the automotive, technology, regulatory, manufacturing, and privacy/data sectors,” adds David Foltyn, chairman and CEO of Honigman. “Not only will this formalize the growing capabilities of attorneys who are practicing in this area, it also solidifies an important milestone in the firm’s strategic growth initiative.”

Honigman’s team includes a group of industry veterans with a combination of work experience, graduate, and undergraduate degrees in the sciences and engineering, as well as attorneys that are certified information privacy professionals.