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Justin N. Leonelli

Justin Leonelli’s legal practice focuses on dispute resolution and strategic counseling in the areas of construction and engineering, manufacturing/supply, commercial disputes, energy (renewable and conventional), and international arbitration.

As a part of his construction practice, Justin represents owners and contractors on public and private construction projects globally. He services his clients through all project phases as both project counsel and litigation counsel. Representative projects include wind farms (offshore and onshore), battery storage facilities, solar fields, power plants, coal mines, oil refineries, wastewater treatment facilities, rail and road infrastructure, telecommunications infrastructure, manufacturing facilities, and commercial office buildings, among many others.

Justin also has a strong energy practice, and has successfully represented and advised clients throughout the energy industry. Specifically, Justin has represented renewable energy companies (wind, solar, battery), mid-stream entities, natural gas exploration companies, coal burning facilities, and oil refineries - in a variety of lawsuits arising from their operations.

Justin also represents parties involved in manufacturing related disputes. In this regard, Justin has represented entities on the supply or receiving end of disputes involving steel and other construction materials, butyl and rubber products, precision metal components, chemicals and plastics, and energy units, among others.

In addition, Justin regularly represents clients in complex commercial litigation and international arbitration disputes involving breach of contract, UCC claims, fraud, and business tort claims.

Justin is a member of both the Hiring Committee and the Associates' Committee for the Pittsburgh office.

Prior to joining the firm, Justin was an associate at a Pittsburgh-based law firm and an international law firm where he focused on construction, energy, commercial litigation, and international arbitration. During law school, Justin worked as a legal intern for the nation’s largest provider of shared communications infrastructure.

  • Allegheny County Council Proclamation
  • CALI Excellence for the Future Award, Legal Research & Writing
  • CALI Excellence for the Future Award, Advanced Legal Writing: Writing in Law Practice
  • Best Appellate Brief in Academic Mock Appeal
  • Society of Construction Law - North America, Regional Director – Delaware Valley Region
  • Allegheny County Bar Association - Construction Section, Member
  • Allegheny County Bar Association - Young Lawyers Division, Member
  • New Century Careers, Director (2017-2021)
  • "Ethics of Your Allegations and the $1 Counterclaim,” Energy & Mineral Law Foundation Conference, June 2024
  • "International Arbitration and Construction Disputes,” K&L Gates Under the Wire Seminar, April 2024
  • “Design-Build Projects: Key Issues; Drafting to Mitigate Risk for Contractors, Design Professionals, and Owners,” Strafford Publication, February 2024
  • "Instant Communication and Advances in Technology: Exchanging Ethical Dilemmas and Increased Expectations for Convenience and Efficiency," Dean John J. Sciullo Fundamentals of Law Continuing Education Series, April 2015

Justin grew up in Youngstown, Ohio, where he attended Cardinal Mooney High School. He now resides in a northern suburb of Pittsburgh. In his spare time, Justin likes to golf and visit with family and friends.

Additional Thought Leadership Pages
  • K&L Gates, AAA Amendments to the Commercial Arbitration Rules and Mediation Procedures (September 2022)
  • Reed Smith, Global Construction Update: The Sustainability Issue, European Contracting Practices Present Challenges to U.S.-based Offshore Wind (June 2022)
  • K&L Gates, COVID-19: Pennsylvania Construction Amid COVID-19 (April 2020)
  • K&L Gates, An Overview of Pennsylvania’s New Arbitration Law (August 2019)
  • “Amendments to Federal Rule of Evidence 902,” The Legal Intelligencer, 1 November 2017
  • Dormant Commerce Clause Review of a Lifecycle Analysis Regulation: Rocky Mountain Farmers Union v. Corey, 3 JOULE ENERGY & ENVTL. L.J. 2, 11 November 2014
Additional News & Event Pages
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