Alexander R. Bilus

Alexander (Sandy) R. Bilus assists clients who are facing complex commercial litigation or who need legal advice on issues involving cybersecurity and data privacy, particularly in the higher education and financial services industries. Sandy’s litigation experience includes arguing cases before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and assisting with argument preparation for cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania. He also advises clients involved in defamation cases.

His work for institutions of higher education includes providing advice and conducting internal investigations connected to their compliance concerns, as well as responding to private lawsuits and government enforcement activity. Sandy also counsels colleges and universities on cybersecurity and data privacy matters. Because of the depth of his experience representing higher education institutions, he understands the unique challenges that this industry faces in planning for cyber-attacks and data breaches, to managing these crises, to proceeding after one or both occur.

Higher Education matters

As a core member of the firm’s Higher Education Practice, Sandy understands the concerns that colleges and universities face when crises unfold on campus. His experience includes helping higher education institutions address legal issues involving campus unrest and protests, sexual abuse, data privacy and cybersecurity issues, hazing, and criminal acts committed by employees.

Select representations include:

  • The Pennsylvania State University in its defense of civil litigation matters stemming from claims brought by the alleged sexual abuse victims of Jerry Sandusky.
  • A higher education institution on compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
  • A public university system on compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act (Clery Act).
  • A university on various lawsuits involving students who allege they were hazed by members of their fraternity.
  • Numerous higher education institutions regarding First Amendment issues, including protests by students on campus and other student speech issues.
  • A university in litigation brought by members of the Board of Trustees over access to university information.
  • A public university on its response to an employee accused of a criminal act.
  • A public university on changes to vaccination policies.

Cybersecurity and Data Privacy

As co-chair of the firm’s Cybersecurity and Privacy Practice, Sandy helps clients understand the legal liabilities they face if a cyberattack or data breach occurs and their compliance obligations to help minimize these risks. He helps clients prepare for cybersecurity incidents, conducts internal investigations in response to potential breaches, and provides representation in related litigation.

Select representations include:

  • Various clients responding to data breaches and other incidents involving unauthorized access to data.
  • A client on privacy matters including policies on handling and transferring sensitive data.
  • Various clients on compliance with the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Commercial and Appellate Litigation

Sandy’s commercial and appellate litigation work spans from cases involving employee benefits and leverage buyouts to class action securities disputes and state and federal constitutional issues.

Select representations include:

  • An insurance carrier before the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court in an appeal over change in status of benefits for an injured employee.
  • An individual before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit after an adverse jury verdict.
  • A group of judges before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in challenge to a provision of the Pennsylvania Constitution.
  • A group of individuals before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court in a challenge to provision of Pennsylvania Constitution.
  • Assistance with argument preparation on behalf of petitioners before the U.S. Supreme Court challenging the validity of portions of a bankruptcy statute on First Amendment grounds.
  • Assistance with argument preparation on behalf of a respondent before the U.S. Supreme Court challenging the government’s interpretation of a U.S. Trustee’s duty to object to exemptions under the Bankruptcy Code.
  • Multiple mutual fund complexes in litigation arising out of a leveraged buyout.
  • The officers and directors of a plastic bottle manufacturer in a securities class action arising out of an initial public offering.
  • The officers and directors of a credit card issuer in class actions brought under the 1934 Act, the 1933 Act, and ERISA.
  • Hedge funds responding to SEC investigations.

Defamation matters

Select representations include:

  • Defense of a media company and its radio station facing a defamation and invasion of privacy (false light) case.
  • Assistance in the defense of the executor of an estate facing libel and defamation allegations in connection with statements contained in a biography about the Pulitzer Prize-winning decedent regarding a mistress.

Through his work with the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, Sandy also has represented clients bringing First Amendment and other constitutional claims. He also represented on a pro bono basis a group of same-sex couples who brought a constitutional challenge to Pennsylvania’s ban on same-sex marriage.

Before joining Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr, he practiced for six years at an international law firm in Philadelphia and worked as a law clerk for two federal judges.