Masha Hansford has experience in complex civil and criminal litigation in federal and state courts at both the trial and appellate levels. Masha has argued before various courts, including the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the D.C. Circuit. She has also briefed multiple cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and the federal courts of appeals in a wide variety of substantive areas. Super Lawyers has repeatedly recognized Masha as one of its “Rising Stars.”

Before joining Williams & Connolly in 2013, Masha clerked for Judge David S. Tatel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, and Judge John D. Bates on the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Born in Russia, Masha moved to the United States at the age of seven and attended high school in Colorado. She graduated summa cum laude from Harvard University in 2008.  Masha graduated from Stanford Law School in 2011, where she won best oralist in the Kirkwood Moot Court competition and served as the president of the Stanford Law Review.

Representative Experience

Though all cases vary and none is predictive, Masha’s experience includes:

  • Successfully represented a finance company in a Supreme Court case challenging the filing of certain bankruptcy claims as a false or unfair debt-collection practice
  • Successfully represented finance company in a Supreme Court case on the frequently litigated question of which financial institutions are subject to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
  • Successfully represented Jesse Litvak, a Jefferies bond trader, in two high-profile appeals in the Second Circuit reversing his convictions for securities fraud.
  • Served as court-appointed amicus in the D.C. Circuit, obtaining reversal of district court decision in Freedom of Information Act case
  • Successfully defended a news program against allegations of libel in a four-week trial in federal district court.
  • Obtained complete victory for pro bono client in a Maryland criminal matter when the government agreed to dismiss all charges against client



Government Service

Law Clerk, Judge John D. Bates, United States District Court for the District of Columbia, 2012-2013

Law Clerk, Judge David S. Tatel, United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, 2011-2012


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