Relman Colfax is pleased to announce that Yiyang Wu has joined the partnership.
Since coming to the Firm in 2014, Yiyang has established herself as a leading fair housing and civil rights litigator, obtaining numerous verdicts and settlements in cases involving fair lending, housing discrimination, and police accountability. She was part of the trial team that prevailed in Saint-Jean, et al. v. Emigrant Mortgage Co., et al., a reverse redlining suit against a New York bank that targeted African-American and Hispanic neighborhoods with predatory home refinance loans. In Gilead Community Services v. Town of Cromwell, Yiyang achieved a landmark ruling holding that municipalities are not immune from the assessment of punitive damages by a jury, paving the way for all of Plaintiffs’ disability discrimination claims to proceed to trial. She co-authored a Fourth Circuit appellate brief in Hicks v. Ferreyra, et al., in which a unanimous panel upheld the denial of qualified immunity in a Bivens suit, establishing—as a matter of first impression—that officers who fail to present certain claims at the trial stage waive their rights to do so on appeal. Currently, Yiyang represents twenty-one fair housing organizations in a systemic housing discrimination case challenging the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae)'s discriminatory maintenance of its “real estate owned” (REO) properties around the country.
Yiyang has also developed a substantial expertise in the subject area of harassment in housing. In trial and appellate courts, Yiyang has successfully litigated sexual harassment cases against landlords who engage in quid pro quo sex discrimination, as well as against housing providers who fail to appropriately address severe race- or sex-based tenant-on-tenant harassment. She regularly advises and conducts trainings about the future of harassment cases under the Fair Housing Act. As partner, Yiyang will be integral to growing the Firm’s practice in these cutting-edge areas.
Yiyang graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where she was a Toll Public Interest Scholar and an Articles Editor of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review. Prior to joining the Firm, Yiyang was a law clerk for the Honorable Andre M. Davis on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, and for the Honorable Mary A. McLaughlin on the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
Yiyang is an adjunct professor at Howard University School of Law. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association Educational Fund as Treasurer (2018-2019) and Director (2019-2020). She currently serves on the Nominations Committee of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of the Greater Washington, D.C. Area.
Please join us in welcoming Yiyang to the partnership.