Susannah Vance Gopalan

Susannah Vance Gopalan2021-10-05T16:14:44-04:00

Susannah Vance Gopalan


  • 202.600.3537
Susannah Vance Gopalan

A partner with the firm, Susannah Vance Gopalan focuses on health care litigation and regulatory counseling, with a distinct focus on Medicaid and Medicare payment, financing, and compliance issues.

Ms. Gopalan brings regulatory expertise to bear when advising clients and pursuing litigation on their behalf. She has experience negotiating Medicaid waivers and managed care arrangements on behalf of providers, provider associations, and governmental entities. She represented a group of providers in reaching a settlement in major Medicaid litigation.

Ms. Gopalan began her legal career as a clerk for the Hon. John M. Rogers of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. She then practiced with a large Washington, DC law firm primarily in the areas of health care and federal-state programs. During this time, Ms. Gopalan also provided pro bono legal services to asylum-seekers. This work subsequently led her to work at a national refugee resettlement agency managing a grant program providing legal representation to victims of torture in immigration detention.

Ms. Gopalan understands her clients’ reliance on federal funds demands far more than a narrow legal understanding of specific programs; effective counsel requires a comprehensive understanding of the policy framework on which Medicaid and federal grant programs are founded. She is driven to apply her experience with these programs to resolve the complex issues faced by her clients.

Representative Matters

  • Advised a national association of health care providers concerning Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Medicaid, Medicare, and Exchange regulations.
  • Represented a group of ten health care providers in negotiating their role as patient-centered medical homes under a Medicaid waiver program.
  • Obtained favorable settlement on behalf of a group of eight health care providers in federal and state court litigation concerning Medicaid reimbursement.
  • Advised major urban governments on Medicaid financing issues, including localities’ role in Medicaid administrative claiming and financing of the nonfederal share.
  • Advised consortium of public health organizations on lobbying restrictions under federal grants administered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


  • Selected to the Washington, DC, Super Lawyers “Rising Stars” list – Health Care Law (2014)

Previous Experience

  • Congressional Research Service, Analyst in Health Care Financing (2016-2018)
  • Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, Attorney for Access to Justice (2008-2010)
  • Covington & Burling LLP, Associate (2005-2008)
Susannah Vance Gopalan


  • J.D., University of Kentucky College of Law, magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, Kentucky Law Journal (2004)
  • M.I.A., Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs, FLAS Fellowship (2000)
  • B.A., Columbia University, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, The Brunner Award (1996)

Bar/Court Admissions

  • District of Columbia
  • Kentucky
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia

Professional Memberships / Affiliations

  • American Health Law Association
  • American Health Law Association, Post Acute and Long Term Services Practice Group, Leadership Development Program (2019-2020)
  • D.C. Bar

Speaking Engagements

Press Mentions:

COVID-19 Recent Changes to Telehealth Regulations and Reimbursement, April 29, 2020, by Thomas Sullivan

However, we also wanted to point out Attorney Susannah Vance Gopalan’s article on new CMS rules.

Untraditional Community Partnerships Will Become Part of CCBHC Process, March 14, 2016, By Valerie A. Canady

Many of the behavioral health organizations selected to become CCBHCs in October may not provide all nine of the services that will be required of them, said Susannah Vance Gopalan, a partner with Washington, D.C.-based Feldesman Tucker Leifer Fidell LLP, and presenter of the session, “Becoming Best Friends: CCBHCs and Designated Collaborating Organization.”


  • Health Centers & Telehealth: Surmounting Regulatory and Operational Challenges, Co-presenter, National Association of Community Health Centers Financial, Operations, Management/IT Conference, October 2019
  • Cost Reporting for Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics, Co-presenter, National Council for Behavioral Health, NatCon Conference, March 2016
  • Becoming Best Friends: CCBHCs and Designated Collaborating Organizations, National Council for Behavioral Health, NatCon Conference, March 2016
  • Medicaid Managed Care and Public Health, Co-presenter with Sarah Somers of NHeLP, Public Health Law Conference, September 2016
  • CMS Update, National Association of Community Health Centers Community Health Institute, August 2014