Barbara Van Gelder

Senior Counsel

Washington, D.C.

(202) 463-2516

(202) 861-1905

Recent News:

More Than 200 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named Best Lawyers and Ones to Watch

210 Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 24 of the firm’s nationwide offices for inclusion in the 2023 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

Biz is a leader in the field of criminal defense and internal investigations focusing on white-collar defense and health care cases. Biz regularly represents clients in congressional and criminal fraud investigations, as well as qui tam, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), False Claims Act (FCA), civil RICO, and employment litigation. She has counseled clients — including boards, audit committees, and management — on the development and implementation of internal compliance and ethics programs, the conduct of internal investigations, and employment litigation issues. Biz has also represented numerous companies and individuals in suspension and debarment matters as well as in congressional and inspector general investigations.

Biz’s extensive FCPA compliance experience includes leading numerous internal investigations in the United States as well as India, China, and Israel. Biz’s practice also includes clients who have been the targets of DOJ search warrants and grand jury investigations as well as parallel SEC investigations. She has had more than 100 jury trials and has counseled clients on the pros/cons of government plea arrangements, Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPAs), Non-Prosecution Agreements (NPAs), and voluntary disclosures. Biz has also developed internal Codes of Conduct and Anti-Corruption compliance training for multinational corporations. She has spoken at various conferences on the FCPA as well as the new UK Bribery Act.

As Deputy Chief of the Civil Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, Biz was tasked with the formation of the office’s Affirmative Civil Enforcement (ACE) program. During her tenure at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Biz was a member of the Department of Justices ACE Working Group and the Attorney General’s Healthcare Taskforce. Biz is in a small pool of FCA defense attorneys who have jury trial and appellate experience in qui tam matters, including U.S. ex rel. Totten v. Bombardier, and Envirorac, Inc. and United States ex rel DRC, Inc. v. Custer Battles

Chambers USA noted that Biz is praised for her ability to be “really creative on behalf of her clients,” and one source enthused that “her representation is worth its weight in gold.” In naming her one of Washington, D.C.’s top criminal defense lawyers, Washingtonian magazine described Biz as someone to call if “you find yourself drawn into an awkward congressional investigation, or worse, a grand-jury investigation by the Justice Department or the U.S. Attorney’s office.”

Main Justice honored Biz with its Distinguished Service Award in the Zealous Advocates category in the first annual Main Justice Best FCPA Lawyers Client Service Awards.

Biz has taught evidence and trial practice as an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center. She also has taught at National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA) trial and deposition workshops and at the Attorney General’s Advocacy Institute. In addition, she is a frequent speaker at the ABA Health Care Fraud and Qui Tam Institutes.

Since 2000, Biz has been member of the American Bar Association’s Public Contract Law section, and has served for many years as the vice chair of the section’s Procurement Fraud and False Claims Committee.

 

Experience

News

More Than 200 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named Best Lawyers and Ones to Watch

August 22, 2022

210 Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 24 of the firm’s nationwide offices for inclusion in the 2023 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

13 Cozen O'Connor Attorneys Named 2022 D.C. Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

July 12, 2022

Super Lawyers has named 13 Cozen O’Connor attorneys to its 2022 Washington D.C. Super Lawyers and Rising Stars lists.

Chambers Ranks 86 Cozen O’Connor Lawyers, 22 Practice Areas in Chambers USA 2022 Guide

June 02, 2022

Chambers USA, the leading annual guide to the top lawyers and law firms in the United States, has ranked 86 Cozen O’Connor lawyers as leaders in their respective fields in the guide’s 2022 edition.

More Than 205 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named Best Lawyers and Ones to Watch By The Best Lawyers In America

August 19, 2021

Best Lawyers selected 210 Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 23 of the firm’s nationwide offices for inclusion in the 2022 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

82 Cozen O’Connor Lawyers, 19 Practices Earn Top Recognition in Chambers USA 2021 Guide

May 26, 2021

Chambers USA, the leading annual guide to the top lawyers and law firms in the United States, has ranked 82 Cozen O’Connor lawyers as leaders in their respective fields in the guide’s 2021 edition; of those, 15 lawyers have been recognized nationally.

Twelve Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Recognized as Washington, D.C., Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

May 05, 2021

Super Lawyers has named 12 Cozen O'Connor attorneys to its 2021 Washington, D.C., Super Lawyers and Rising Stars list.

More Than 200 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named Best Lawyers and Ones to Watch By The Best Lawyers In America

August 20, 2020

Best Lawyers selected 201 Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 23 of the firm’s nationwide offices for inclusion in the 2021 edition of The Best Lawyers in America© (Copyright 2020 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, SC).

63 Cozen O’Connor Lawyers, 16 Practices Earn Top Recognition in Chambers USA 2020 Guide

May 14, 2020

Chambers USA, the leading annual guide to the top lawyers and law firms in the United States, has ranked 63 Cozen O’Connor lawyers as leaders in their respective fields in the guide’s 2020 edition.

Fourteen Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Recognized as Washington, D.C., Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

April 20, 2020

Super Lawyers has named 14 Cozen O'Connor attorneys to its 2020 Washington, D.C., Super Lawyers and Rising Stars list.

Impeachment Is Almost Over. Here Are the Dozens of Lawyers Who Got Involved

February 05, 2020

On February 5, the National Law Journal published an article about the private lawyers who were pulled into President Donald Trump's impeachment at “nearly every stage of the proceedings."

138 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named to the Best Lawyers in America

August 28, 2019

Best Lawyers selected 138 Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 21 of the firm’s national offices for inclusion in the 2020 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

57 Cozen O’Connor Lawyers, 16 Practices Earn Top Recognition in Chambers USA 2019 Guide

April 25, 2019

Chambers USA, the leading annual guide to the top lawyers and law firms in the USA, has ranked 57 Cozen O’Connor lawyers as leaders in their respective fields in the Guide’s 2019 edition.

13 Cozen O'Connor Attorneys Recognized as Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

April 25, 2019

The 2019 Washington, D.C, edition of Super Lawyers Magazine, published by Thomson Reuters, has named 13 Cozen O’Connor attorneys to its list of Super Lawyers and Rising Stars.

Two Members Again Named “Top Lawyers” by Washingtonian Magazine

November 29, 2018

Barry Boss and Barbara “Biz” Van Gelder, attorneys in Cozen O’Connor’s White Collar Defense & Investigations practice, were named in the Washingtonian magazine’s "Top Lawyers" list.

126 Cozen O’Connor Attorneys Named to the Best Lawyers in America

August 22, 2018

One hundred twenty-six Cozen O’Connor lawyers from 20 of the firm’s national offices have been selected for inclusion in the 2018 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers Recognizes 15 Cozen O'Connor Attorneys

May 15, 2018

Fourteen Cozen O’Connor attorneys have been named 2018 Super Lawyers or Rising Stars by Super Lawyers Magazine Washington, D.C. edition, published by Thomson Reuters.

Without ‘Smoking Gun,’ Feds Face Tough Menendez Retrial

January 22, 2018

Biz Van Gelder, a member of Cozen O’Connor’s Criminal Defense & Internal Investigations Practice Group, discusses the challenges of convincing a jury when a case lacks “smoking gun” evidence in Law360.

Two Members named “Top Lawyers” by Washingtonian Magazine

December 13, 2017

Cozen O’Connor Criminal Defense & Internal Investigation Practice Group members Barry Boss and Barbara “Biz” Van Gelder have been named 2017 “Top Lawyers” by Washingtonian magazine.

After mistrial, Menendez speaks of ‘resurrection,’ but joy may be short-lived

November 16, 2017

Biz Van Gelder, a member of Cozen O’Connor’s Criminal Defense & Internal Investigations Practice Group, discusses Senator Robert Menendez’s months-long bribery trial in The Washington Post.

Publications

Two New Department of Justice Memoranda Strengthen False Claims Act Qui Tam Action Defenses [Criminal Defense & Internal Investigations Alert]

January 26, 2018

Randy Seybold and Biz Van Gelder discuss the DOJs January 10 and January 25 memos and what they mean for FCA qui tam defendants.

Events & Seminars

Past Events

2021 WWCDA Awards Gala

December 07, 2021 - Webinar

The Memos and the Escobar Materiality Analysis

February 28, 2018 - Washington, D.C.

Education

  • Emory University School of Law, J.D., 1976
  • Boston University, B.A., 1972

Awards & Honors

Best Lawyers in America - Criminal Defense: White Collar (2010-2023)

Chambers USA (Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations – DC) (2016-2022)

DC Super Lawyers (White Collar Defense & Investigations) (2019-2022)

Washingtonian Magazine’s Lawyers Lifetime Achievement Award (2022)

“Top Lawyer” for Criminal Defense - White Collar, The Washingtonian Magazine (2017, 2018)

  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. District Court -- District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court -- Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court -- Northern District of Georgia