Matthew W. S. Estes
Matthew W.S. Estes has a broad-based energy practice focused on electric utility M&A and restructuring, and energy-related litigation, including the representation of clients being investigated for potential market manipulation.


In his more than 30 years with Skadden, Mr. Estes has represented clients in numerous litigation and transactional matters on behalf of clients in the electric and oil and gas industries. He has appeared before federal district courts, courts of appeal and the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Estes also has extensive experience at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and state public utility commissions.

Mr. Estes has worked on a number of large electric utility mergers, including the three largest utility mergers in U.S. history, as well as on mergers of independent power producers, hostile mergers and the first electric utility leverage buyout. He also has provided representation regarding electric generation divestitures. His merger-related work involves advising clients on structure and market power issues during the transaction negotiation process, preparation of the requisite FERC and state commission applications, responding to protests of the merger applications and, when necessary, participating in hearings initiated to review proposed mergers.

Mr. Estes is familiar with the various U.S. electric power markets and market power and market manipulation issues raised in those markets. He has represented companies accused of manipulation, both in public proceedings and in nonpublic investigations. He has provided strategic advice to a number of clients, not only in the U.S. but in other countries that also are moving toward the restructuring of their electric utility markets.



  • J.D., University of Virginia School of Law, 1983
  • A.B. Duke University, 1980 (magna cum laude)


  • District of Columbia

Matthew W. S. Estes

Counsel, Energy Mergers and Acquisitions; Energy Regulation and Litigation