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Retail & Ecommerce

Retail companies have amazing breadth. They operate in a vast array of geographic markets, consumer segments, and operational environments—from gigantic national and international store networks to small regional chains, and from third-party sellers on marketplace websites to international ecommerce platforms.  They are cross-border employers with direct-to-consumer sales. For all of these reasons, today’s retailers are exposed to more regulation—and more risk—than companies operating in many other sectors.

Recognized by Chambers for its ability to handle and guide retail’s unique and dynamic legal and litigation landscape on a multistate and multinational scale, Morgan Lewis has one of the preeminent retail and ecommerce industry practices in the United States. Our strong multioffice, multispecialty team innovates winning legal strategies across disciplines and across borders for more than 300 apparel, big-box and online retail, restaurant, grocery, pharmacy, toy, and hospitality, and other consumer-facing clients on both the brick-and-mortar and ecommerce sides of the retail platform. We provide global insight that integrates legal and business strategies to ensure the success of evolving brands throughout the world.

Privacy and cybersecurity issues create significant and constant challenges for retailers dealing with customers’ adoption of new personal technologies. We help retailers navigate accessible digital technology at the point of sale, on websites and mobile platforms, and in gift card and loyalty programs that collect and store private customer data. We recognize that retail clients have legitimate needs to collect and store all kinds of information. Successfully managing and protecting that data has become mission critical for all retailers. Our dedicated team knows how to navigate potential data breaches and other risks associated with using new digital channels for reaching new markets and building brand loyalty and sales.

As trusted counsel to some of retail’s most established and fast-growing brands, Morgan Lewis helps clients buffeted by disruptive new technologies and regulations—by seismic shifts not just in consumer tastes, but also in globalizing supply chain, capital and cost structures. Our retail partners help clients ensure that they don’t just suffer risk, but seize advantage from that next generation of consumer technology, and that next round of workplace or consumer regulation and of global economic expansion or contraction. Our capabilities span litigation; labor, employment, and benefits; global employment and immigration; privacy; the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA); the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA); mergers and acquisitions; restructurings; antitrust; research and development tax planning; outsourcing; and intellectual property—aligning completely with the legal needs of retailers.

Energy sustainability is also a business imperative for retailers. Climate change is on the minds of customers, investors, and employees, and retailers must demonstrate that they are taking the necessary steps to reduce their carbon footprints and set net-zero goals. Our lawyers advise clients—particularly those in the retail and ecommerce industry—as they consider how climate change impacts their business. We assist with renewable power purchase agreements (PPAs), including virtual PPAs; roof top solar projects; real estate and land-use agreements; green building issues, including green leasing and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification; regulatory compliance, including climate-related disclosures and marketing; and commercial agreements for energy-efficiency retrofits and energy-management systems.