Nick Englund headshot.

R. Nicholas Englund

Special Counsel

R. Nicholas Englund

Special Counsel

Nicholas Englund is special counsel and business lawyer with Foley & Lardner LLP, and a member of the firm’s NHTSA & Motor Vehicle Safety Practice. He focuses his practice on federal motor vehicle safety law. He represents motor vehicle manufacturers and major parts suppliers on National Highway Traffic Safety Administration issues, including advising on safety-related and noncompliance recalls, investigations and enforcement proceedings, compliance with Federal motor vehicle safety standards, rulemaking proceedings, FOIA and confidentiality matters, and other compliance issues under the Motor Vehicle Safety Act, TREAD Act, and implementing regulations.

Prior to joining the firm, Nicholas worked as a litigation and enforcement attorney with NHTSA. During his time there, he advised NHTSA on investigations involving fires, airbag failures and noncompliance, corrosion issues, seat failures, failures in suspension systems, heavy-vehicle drivetrain failures, electric vehicle and battery failures, steering issues, and vehicle electrical problems. He also advised NHTSA on civil penalty matters including untimely recalls, Early Warning Reporting (EWR), importation violations, and other noncompliance and failures to submit required information to the agency; on certification and importation issues including noncompliance exemptions, such as the 25-year exemption, the research and show or display exemptions, and the registered-importer program; on VIN compliance issues; on enforcement actions taken with Customs and Border Patrol’s assistance; on petitions for inconsequential noncompliance and temporary exemptions from safety standards; and rulemakings. In addition, Nicholas represented NHTSA in litigation involving FOIA suits, employment discrimination cases, and contract disputes.

Nicholas also served as a Special Assistant United States Attorney in the Civil Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Columbia. He represented the United States and its agencies in federal tort claims cases, Title VII cases, FOIA suits, prisoner litigation, Bivens claims, and constitutional claims.

Previously, he held a position as a staff attorney with an international law firm. He practiced in the pharmaceutical and medical devices litigation division.

02 August 2023 Dashboard Insights

Congress Takes Steps to Revive Legislation Regulating Autonomous Vehicles

On July 26, 2023, the House Subcommittee on Innovation, Data, and Commerce hosted a legislative hearing entitled “Self-Driving Vehicle Legislative Framework: Enhancing Safety, Improving Lives and Mobility, and Beating China," as an initial step toward reviving legislation regulating automated vehicles originally introduced in 2017.
15 June 2023 Dashboard Insights

Michigan Adopts Distracted Driving Legislation

On June 7th, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed distracted driving legislation, making Michigan the 26th state to adopt some form of distracted driving/hands-free driving legislation.
22 May 2023 Blogs

NHTSA and Motor Vehicle Safety Update

While vehicle manufacturers continue to adopt technologies that make vehicles safer, the safety gains seen in the annual fatality statistics published by the NHTSA have plateaued and, since approximately 2015, the number of fatalities has risen.
25 April 2023 Blogs

NHTSA Publishes Proposed Rule to Formalize its Whistleblower Program under the Motor Vehicle Safety Whistleblower Act

On April 14, 2023, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration took a major step in formalizing its Whistleblower Program by issuing a notice of proposed rulemaking to formally promulgate regulations intended to create incentives for whistleblowers to provide safety information to NHTSA as well as provide protections for these whistleblowers.
17 March 2022 Blogs

Top Legal Issues Facing the Automotive Industry in 2022

Foley’s Automotive team examines the business and legal trends that will impact the automotive industry in 2022.
08 April 2021 Blogs

NHTSA and Motor Vehicle Safety

As the Biden administration begins to take shape, the priorities of the U.S. Department of Transportation and NHTSA will shift to reflect the regulatory philosophy and priorities of the new administration.