Two Phillips & Cohen partners named to Best Lawyers “Women In Law” 2021 list

WASHINGTON, DC, June 4, 2021 – Best Lawyers has named two Phillips & Cohen LLP partners – Mary Louise Cohen and Erika Kelton – in its 2021 spring edition list of “Women in Law” for their exemplary achievements representing whistleblowers.

Cohen and Kelton have had stand-out success in representing whistleblowers, consistently winning large settlements and securing significant rewards for their whistleblower clients.

Cohen is a co-founder of Phillips & Cohen, helping build the most successful whistleblower law firm in the US. Her contributions to the field of whistleblower practices were crucial. Cohen played a key role in shaping the modern-day False Claims Act, protecting the law from legal challenges and lobbying efforts during the amended law’s early years.

Cohen’s legal victories include large healthcare fraud cases, including one against Quest Diagnostics, which settled for $302 million and was the largest amount paid by a medical lab company for a faulty product. Other prominent cases taken up by Cohen include a qui tam lawsuit alleging a fraudulent Medicare billing scheme by a Medtronic subsidiary and more than 100 hospitals. The case led to a nationwide enforcement effort that recovered nearly $180 million for taxpayers.

Her successes as a whistleblower attorney and leadership in whistleblower matters have earned her the title of “the Queen of Qui Tam” and widespread recognition and honors. Lawdragon has included Cohen as a “legend” of its 2021” Legends of the 500,” recognizing her long-standing contributions. Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund has bestowed a Lifetime Achievement Award on Cohen.

Kelton is an internationally recognized whistleblower lawyer who has led the charge in multiple record-setting matters and industry “firsts.” She has to date won eight whistleblower awards under Dodd-Frank whistleblower programs – including one for an international whistleblower that is among the largest SEC awards to date at $32 million.

Earlier this year, Kelton secured a substantial award increase for a SEC whistleblower client who experienced retaliation as a result of reporting financial misconduct abroad.

She also represented whistleblowers in record-breaking False Claims Act cases, including two that yielded the largest healthcare fraud settlements ever (GlaxoSmithKline, $3 billion, and Pfizer, $2.3 billion).

Kelton is a regular contributor to and co-teaches law classes with fellow Phillips & Cohen partner Claire Sylvia.

Best Lawyers’ recognitions are based on feedback received from other top lawyers working in same practice areas and geographic regions.

Phillips & Cohen has been regularly recognized in Best Lawyer’s “Best Law Firms” initiative, recently making its fifth consecutive appearance in the annual list.

If you are aware of fraud against the government or corporate wrongdoing that violates securities or commodities laws and would like to discuss your situation with experienced whistleblower lawyers, contact Phillips & Cohen for a free, confidential review.


Phillips & Cohen is the most successful law firm representing whistleblowers, with recoveries from our cases totaling over $12.8 billion. We have been recognized for our work by numerous national awards. Our attorneys and cases have been in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times and other news media. Phillips & Cohen’s roster includes former federal prosecutors, the first head of the SEC Office of the Whistleblower, a former deputy administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the author of a leading treatise on the False Claims Act and attorneys with decades of experience representing whistleblowers. Contact us.

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