As season 4 begins, Ellen is pursuing a wrongful-death suit against military contractor Howard Erickson (John Goodman). She has a potential ally in high-school flame Chris Sanchez (Chris Messina), a troubled former Erickson employee. Lurking in the shadows is Jerry Berman (Dylan Baker), who's mixed up in Mideast intrigue. Meanwhile, Patty's suing a drug company. She also hires former police detective Vic Huntley (Tom Noonan) to find her son, Michael, and yet another nanny for Michael's daughter.
Ellen presents the High Star case to her firm's senior partners while Erickson (John Goodman) and Boorman (Dylan Baker) take different approaches to make it disappear. And Chris (Chris Messina) is growing increasingly suspicious. He has reason to be. Meanwhile, Patty sees a therapist (Fisher Stevens).
Ellen meets Nasim Marwat (Usman Ally), the son of Chris' Afghan contact. Boorman wants badly to meet him, too, so he pressures Erickson to pressure Chris for information. And Patty recruits her mentor (Judd Hirsch) to investigate Hugh Star after getting an important lead about the company's ties to the CIA. Meanwhile, Erickson has been invited to deliver a Christmas Eve homily at his church.
Patty and Ellen prepare Marwat for his deposition while a flu-ridden Boorman sets out to keep it from happening; Erickson works his contacts to ensure that his CIA contracts remain secret. Meanwhile, Catherine Hewes is worrisomely sick.
Patty and Ellen scramble to gain access to Nasim, while Boorman scrambles to keep that from happening; Ellen enlists a reporter (Griffin Dunne) to find Chris in Afghanistan; Erickson and another businessman (John Cullum) negotiate a land deal; and Michael surfaces in New York, looking for Catherine.
Patty uses her drug-company case to gain information on High Star. She also enlists Bill Herndon (Judd Hirsch) to get to Boorman. And Erickson goes to Afghanistan to confront Chris Sanchez. Meanwhile, Michael Hewes seeks out his daughter, Catherine.
While reporter Dean Gullickson (Griffin Dunne) heads to Afghanistan, Erickson orders his staff there to deal with Sanchez once and for all. He also confronts Boorman. Meanwhile, the judge in the High Star case allows Ellen to depose Erickson.