Kevin T. Saunders

Kevin is a trial attorney representing clients across multiple industries dealing with commercial, real estate and products liability litigation. Additionally, he defends criminal matters and represents clients under investigation by U.S. Attorneys General. He also works with a broad range of U.S. and non-U.S. clients to help them navigate complex export control matters concerning the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Export Administration Regulations (EAR), the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) and the U.S. Department of State’s International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR).

Kevin is currently a colonel in the Marine Corps Reserves, most recently serving as the Assessments Officer with II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.  He has been in the Marine Corps since 1991, first as an enlisted Marine with 8th Tank Battalion and then as an officer, both active and reserve, including as the commanding officer of a reserve infantry unit activated in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

What do you focus on?

Complex Commercial Litigation and Real Estate Litigation

I focus on a wide variety of commercial disputes including contracts, real estate, intellectual property, insurance and business torts.  I have experience in all phases of litigation, from trial to verdict, as well as alternate dispute resolution.  I leverage my extensive motion and trial experience in state and federal courts, both at Nixon Peabody and as a federal prosecutor in the U.S. Marine Corps.

Products Liability Litigation and Toxic Tort Litigation

I focus on and have significant experience defending product liability litigation for pharmaceutical companies, consumer goods manufacturers and premises defendants in exposure cases alleging negligence, product and design defects and failure to warn.  I have represented these clients in jurisdictions throughout the United States.

Export Compliance

I advise clients on their internal compliance processes through the use of compliance manuals and classification charts and checklists. I work with clients to develop ITAR compliance strategies and advise them on the necessary processes required of businesses, including registration, licensing and disclosures. My regulatory experience involves analyzing and interpreting the ITAR, the EAR and the U.S. sanctions laws administered by OFAC and helping clients understand new developments.

What do you see on the horizon?

With technology developing faster and faster, businesses face new and costly challenges at the earliest stages of and throughout litigation. Knowledge of this technology combined with an effective case strategy offers the most effective and efficient solution to assist clients in navigating a case through its life cycle and achieving a successful outcome.


  • Department of Homeland Security issues ‘Best Practices for Protecting Privacy’ in UAS Programs,” NP Privacy Partner blog, January 29, 2016.
  • FAA announces drone registration process,” NP Privacy Partner blog, December 17, 2015.
  • “Trends and compliance in Foreign Corrupt Practices Act,” Rochester Business Journal, March 20, 2015 (Coauthor).
  • “One Team, One Fight—One Community’s Integrated Approach to Veterans Issues,” New York State Bar Association Pro Bono News, Veterans Edition 2013. (Coauthor).
  • “Contacting and Compensating a Non-Party/Former Employee Fact Witness: The Legal and Ethical Issues,” Product Liability Law & Strategy, July 1, 2013 (Coauthor).
  • “Computer-assisted review approved by SDNY,” Nixon Peabody Electronic Discovery and Evidence Law Alert, March 1, 2012 (Coauthor.)
  • “The Zubulake Preservation Standard Now Applies in the First Department,” Nixon Peabody Electronic Discovery and Evidence Law Alert, February 13, 2012 (Coauthor).
  • Wyeth v. Levine: The Final Act of the Preemption Drama,” Law Journal Newsletter's Product Liability Law & Strategy, November 1, 2008 (Coauthor).


  • “E-Discovery,” Monroe County Bar Association CLE program, May 2, 2012. (Chair)
  • “Prisoners 1983 Civil Rights Litigation,” Monroe County Bar Association CLE program, July 5, 2011. (Panelist)
  • “Important Considerations for Contracting with the Government,” Nixon Peabody client CLE program, June 9 and 10, 2011. (Co-presenter)
  • “E-Discovery,” Monroe County Bar Association CLE program, April 14, 2011. (Co-presenter)
  • “E-Discovery Best Practices in New York State and Federal Courts,” Nixon Peabody client CLE program, November 19, 2010. (Co-presenter)
  • “Privilege, Work Product and Internal Investigations,” Nixon Peabody client CLE program, May 20, 2010. (Co-presenter)


Kevin T. Saunders



Phone: 585-263-1561

Fax: 866-743-2081

University of Rochester, Simon School of Business, M.B.A.

Syracuse University College of Law, J.D.

St. John Fisher College, B.A., cum laude

New Jersey

New York


Kevin was selected, through a peer-review survey, for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2022 in the fields of Commercial Litigation, Product Liability Litigation—Defendants, and Litigation—Real Estate. Kevin has been listed in Best Lawyers since 2019. Additionally, he was named the Best Lawyers® 2021 Product Liability Litigation—Defendants “Lawyer of the Year” in Rochester, NY.

He was awarded the 2014 New York State Bar Association’s President’s Service Pro Bono Award for the 7th Judicial District for his work on behalf of veterans, including co-founding One Team, One Fight, which addressed veterans’ employment, education, medical, psychological, housing and legal needs.

Kevin is also a recipient of the 2011 Pro Bono Award, presented by the United States District Court for the Western District of New York State. The award recognizes “distinguished work representing indigent civil litigants, often in civil rights cases,” along with “extraordinary commitment, dedication, skill and professionalism in ensuring equal access to justice for all,” according to Chief Judge William M. Skretny.

Best Lawyers in America© periodically reviews lawyer credentials and solicits, reviews and evaluates peer feedback in determining who receives recognition. No aspect of this advertisement has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey or any other applicable state bar reviewing authority.

Kevin Saunders currently serves on the Legal Assistance of Western New York (LawNY) board and the Simon School Executive MBA Program Alumni Advisory board. He is a member of the New York State and Monroe County Bar Associations (and former chair of the latter’s Veterans Committee).

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