Kevin Sheys guides railroad and public transit industry clients through transactions and regulatory challenges to help them achieve their objectives.

He advises clients on high-priority freight and passenger railroad projects and transactions and handles regulatory matters before the Surface Transportation Board (STB), the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA).

In the passenger rail sector, Kevin has structured and negotiated more than 25 intercity, commuter, and light rail projects, including related rail line acquisitions, shared use agreements, and regulatory clearances.

In the freight rail sector, Kevin has represented buyers in more than 40 rail line acquisitions and advised numerous freight railroads on how to make effective use of the Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act of 1995 (ICCTA) preemption to expedite permitting and environmental clearance of new facilities. He also assists oil, steel, chemical, agriculture, and heavy manufacturing companies in establishing or expanding rail-served facilities.

In both sectors, Kevin represents locomotive, equipment, and systems manufacturers, rolling stock lessors, suppliers, and service companies on purchases and sales, operations and maintenance contracts, and responses to procurements. His work involves a wide range of regulatory issues, including licensing, safety, and federal railroad labor, employment, and retirement laws.

Kevin brings versatile knowledge of the railroad and transit industry to our Transportation team through his unique experience while guiding and delivering solutions for clients.

Awards and recognitions


Transportation, Rail (for Railroads) (Nationwide)
Chambers USA


Transportation and Maritime
Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers


Top 45 Regulatory & Compliance Trailblazers
National Law Journal

Education and admissions


J.D., University of Minnesota Law School, cum laude, 1987

B.A., Gustavus Adolphus College, magna cum laude, 1984


Member, American Public Transportation Association, Legal Affairs and Commuter Rail Committees

Member, Railway Supply Institute, Washington Affairs Committee

Member, National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association, Safety Committee

Member, Association of Transportation Law Professionals

Member, Transportation Research Board, Standing Committee on Transit and Intermodal Transportation Law

Bar admissions and qualifications

District of Columbia



Representative experience

Advised a large tank car lessor regarding U.S. Department of Transportation's DOT-117 tank car standards.*

Represented Amtrak in a Surface Transportation Board proceeding to establish terms and compensation for Amtrak's continued use of the Canadian National Railway Company rail lines.

Advised the California High-Speed Rail Authority's effort to secure STB authorization for construction of track and facilities in the Central Valley.*

Advised the Metropolitan Council's acquisition of a rail line from Canadian Pacific Railway for extension of the METRO Green Line from downtown Minneapolis.*

Negotiated an operating agreement for the Port of Oakland regarding a new port rail operator covering expanded facilities on former Oakland Army Base.

Advised Jackson County, Missouri's acquisition of a railroad from Union Pacific Railroad and defense of third-party Surface Transportation Board challenges to the acquisition.

*Matter handled prior to joining Hogan Lovells.

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