Examples of Jacob’s experience include:
Regulatory & Safety Compliance
- Providing legal and industry knowledge to a broad spectrum of U.S. and international mobility and automotive clients, including automobile OEM, suppliers, ridesharing enterprises, startups and technology companies, autonomous vehicle companies and suppliers, encompassing passenger vehicles, motorcycles, medium- and heavy-duty trucks, buses, RVs, tires, trailers, off-road vehicles (ORVs), specialty equipment and the full spectrum of aftermarket equipment.
- Representing clients before DOT agencies, including NHTSA, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), California Air Resources Board (CARB) and others.
Providing comprehensive problem-solving services in high-profile mobility, vehicle safety and related regulatory matters, including self-certification of standards (including U.S. Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (FMVSSs) Canada Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (CMVSSs), EU standards and ECE standards in other markets), homologation, regulatory compliance, innovative mobility and safety strategies, hybrid and electric vehicles, ridesharing enterprises, emerging technologies, ADAS, automated and autonomous driving systems, best practices and emerging trends, standards enforcement, defects investigations, government inquiries and enforcement proceedings, and recall implementation.
- Developing and maintaining comprehensive automotive safety compliance programs for several global automobile OEMs and other Fortune 500 mobility and technology companies.
- Providing ongoing counsel to the corporate technical/product safety committees of several U.S. and global companies responsible for determining defect, compliance, field action and recall issues for the companies’ respective vehicles and equipment.
- Creating first-of-their-kind regulatory and legislative strategies for several prominent U.S. and international mobility and automotive clients to advance automated/autonomous driving system development and deployment in the absence of regulatory certainty.
- Leading a multi-month comprehensive legal and engineering analysis and assessment for a Fortune 500 mobility OEM on pre-production and design issues for new vehicle products and associated lines that avoided potentially costly safety and quality issues, promoted increased teamwork within the company’s relevant engineering and business units, and promoted the company’s market objectives.
- Conducting an internal regulatory and safety compliance review for a multinational corporation and technology company, resulting in key business insights and recommended process improvements for operations and sales in the U.S. and global mobility and automotive sectors.
- Working with the firm’s Environmental practice group to advise mobility and automotive clients on environmental legal issues, particularly regulatory issues under the Clean Air Act and CARB mobile source emission regulations, and attendant matters before EPA and CARB.
- Providing clients with common-sense interpretations of federal statutes and regulations, including, among other things, FMVSSs/CMVSSs, early warning (EWR)/TREAD Act reporting, foreign recall reporting, registration, labeling, VIN requirements, vehicle importation, prototypes and other NHTSA regulatory requirements that give clear business direction for company engineering and business units.
- Conducting root cause determinations, incident inspections and NHTSA/industry precedent analysis, including associated processes to mitigate risks for product issues, and assisting clients with FMEA and DFMEA reviews to manage safety outcomes, routine safety evaluation processes and industry benchmarking (both quality and safety).
- Preparing clients’ petitions for determinations of inconsequential noncompliance, requests for temporary exemptions from federal safety standards, requests for agency interpretation of existing federal statutes and regulations, and requests for protection of confidential business information (CBI).
- Working collaboratively with the firm’s trade and technology teams to advise clients on international trade issues (including tariffs, import and export regulations), cybersecurity matters, privacy issues and the full range of related corporate governance and compliance needs.
- Providing U.S. and global clients with business development advice and counsel on growth opportunities, including identifying new product segment and content feature opportunities, and guidance for startups with go-to-market strategies for novel mobility solutions.
- Assisting clients with risk management programs and conducting internal audits to create sustainable U.S. and global quality and safety organizational departments, including in-house legal and business-oriented training and ongoing support.
- Facilitating business partnerships and joint ventures among leading automotive companies, technology and product suppliers, mobility startups and applicable regulators.
- Drafting, reviewing and negotiating contracts and contract language on safety determination reporting responsibilities and recall cost recovery and risk allocation.
- Drafting, reviewing and negotiating contracts and contract language on mobility and emerging technology research projects and analysis of product usage, human factors, human machine interface (HMI) considerations and safety system integrity.
Litigation & Enforcement
- Representing U.S. and international mobility and automotive clients in NHTSA investigation and enforcement proceedings, defect and compliance investigations and recalls.
- Working with clients and the firm’s litigators in NHTSA investigations, product liability matters and class action litigations to cost-effectively identify, preserve, collect, process and produce relevant and material electronic data and documents involving hundreds of custodians, millions of documents and documents in foreign languages, including managing review teams for large document review projects in a centralized document review center, drafting and reviewing discovery responses to NHTSA, other federal agencies and courts.
- Working closely with the firm’s litigators in product liability cases, class action matters and cases involving judicial review of federal regulatory decisions, including issues regarding, associated compliance with federal safety standards, emerging technologies, ADAS, automated/autonomous driving systems, associated standards of care and preemption.
- Creating, in the absence of crisis and in collaboration with the firm’s litigators, modern and innovative approaches for clients that integrate regulatory issues arising in civil actions to benefit product liability litigation, class action litigation, and government inquiries and enforcement cases.
Legislative & Policy
- Providing strategic leadership for U.S. and global automotive and mobility OEMs in crisis management situations for recent high-profile government enforcement matters with significant congressional and media scrutiny, including proactive measures to build relationships with key federal regulators and other stakeholders.
- Developing client successes in connection with pending federal and state legislative proposals and policy issues, including, strategic advice and insights, legislative and regulatory monitoring, analyzing comments in federal rule-making proceedings, and day-to-day legal and engineering counseling that helps navigate the administrative and legislative processes.
- Preparing legislative testimony and comments in federal rule-making proceedings.
- Drafting legislative and regulatory language, with an eye to providing leadership to advance clients’ business goals and policy objectives.
- University of Alabama, J.D., 2004
- University of Alabama, B.A., 2001