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Q&A with Scott Faga: “Obtain Broad Experience”

Recently, we caught up with Scott Faga to talk about how he first became interested in his practice area and the trends he sees developing over the next year. Scott is a partner in the Finance and Corporate practices in the Washington, D.C. office.
What do you enjoy most about being at Paul Hastings?

I particularly like the wealth of resources at Paul Hastings. From staff to attorneys in management roles and other practice areas, I have found everyone to be incredibly collegial and willing to lend a helping hand. This attribute of the firm culture allowed our transition process to be very smooth and it has also helped us to grow our practice and provide assistance to other practice areas quickly. 
What first interested you about your practice area?

I learned about my practice area from a professor in law school. I was her research assistant during my third year, and she was writing articles about structured finance. She also provided me with transaction documents from actual deals, and I became interested in them because they required knowledge of a broad range of legal and commercial issues.

What market developments do you see happening in your practice area over the next 12 months?

Many of our transactions are subject to the risk retention rules under the Dodd-Frank Act. The rules become effective in December 2016 and investment managers will need to have their financing solutions in place well before the deadline. We have had an interesting time in the last six month helping market participants structure solutions. Over the next 12 months, we will spend a lot of time helping clients execute those solutions.

What is the most challenging case or deal you have worked on? What made it challenging?

I worked on the Maiden Lane transaction, pursuant to which the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and JPMorgan financed illiquid assets held by Bear Stearns in connection with JPMorgan’s acquisition of Bear Stearns. There was no precedent for a transaction of this type and it had to be done in a very compressed timeframe and under intense scrutiny.

What advice would you give to new associates?

I always advise new associates to obtain broad experience within their chosen area of law (e.g. securities, corporate, litigation) during their early years of practice. They will inevitably have a narrower specialty later in their career, but they will be able to choose that specialty more effectively and will understand that specialty better having been exposed to other practices and how they work.

How do you spend your free time? (hobbies, travel, etc.)

I spend most of my free time with my kids (two teens and a first grader provide a whole variety of different activities). I get out to the golf course when I can, although I am not sure I can call what I do there “golfing.”