Mr. John P. Elwood
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP
601 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20001-3743

Phone    (202) 942-5992
Fax         (202) 942-5999

Type of Case: Civil and Criminal
Admitted to practice:
Supreme Court
1st Circuit, 2nd Circuit, 3rd Circuit, 4th Circuit, 5th Circuit, 6th Circuit, 7th Circuit, 8th Circuit, 9th Circuit, 10th Circuit, 11th Circuit, D.C., Federal

John Elwood is the head of Arnold & Porter's Appellate and Supreme Court practice. He has argued nine cases before the Supreme Court of the United States and appeared before most of the federal courts of appeals. He also served for nearly a decade as an instructor of the University of Virginia School of Law's Supreme Court Clinic.

John has been named as AmLaw Litigation Daily’s “Litigator of the Week” and as a Law360 “Appellate MVP,” and his work has been recognized by the Finanical Times’ “North American Innovative Lawyers” issue for two years running. In 2016, an academic study that appeared in the Villanova Law Review identified him as one of "the most successful petitioning attorneys" before the Supreme Court during the study period.

John served for seven years as the senior deputy in the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel and as an Assistant to the Solicitor General. John received both the Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service and the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service—the Justice Department’s two top awards for lawyers. John is a former law clerk to Supreme Court Associate Justice Anthony M. Kennedy and the late Judge J. Daniel Mahoney of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He is a graduate of Yale Law School and Princeton University.


  • Princeton University, A.B. summa cum laude in Public Affairs, 1989
  • King's College London, M.A. with honors in Military History, 1990
  • Yale Law School, J.D., 1993.

Practice Focus:

  • False Claims Act
  • white collar criminal defense
  • environmental law
  • constitutional law.

Representative Cases:

  • Elonis v. United States (U.S. 2015)
  • Kellogg Brown & Root v. United States ex rel. Carter (U.S. 2015)
  • MacDermid Printing Solutions v. Cortron Corporation (2d Cir. 2016)
  • In re Kellogg Brown & Root (D.C. Cir. 2014 & 2015)
  • United States ex rel. Shupe v. Cisco Systems (5th Cir. 2014).

Honors and Awards:

  • NLJ Appellate "Hot List" (2019, 2014)
  • AmLaw Litigation Daily Litigator of the Week (2015)
  • Law360 Appellate MVP (2015)
  • Financial Times’ North American Innovative Lawyers (2014, 2015)
  • Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service (2005)
  • Attorney General’s Award for Exceptional Service (2002).