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Class Action Litigation Defense

Defended large mortgage lender in putative nationwide class action lawsuit alleging failure to comply with regulations promulgated by the U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development governing residential mortgage loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Identified and retained the former FHA Commissioner, the top political position at the FHA, to serve as the client's expert witness, and successfully defeated class certification.
Defended mobile wireless companies in putative class action litigation arising under the federal Communications Act and state unfair and deceptive acts and practices statutes, including disputes concerning the assessment of surcharges, text messaging charges, premium text messaging charges, and alleged violations of the number porting requirements of the Federal Communications Commission.
Defended online business loan originator in putative wage class action alleging misclassification of employees and failure to pay adequate overtime wages.
Defended retailer in a putative class action alleging that an aloe vera gel manufactured by the retailer and purchased by plaintiff was labeled incorrectly as being "made with 100 percent pure aloe" and asserting claims for consumer fraud and breach of warranty. Moved to dismiss plaintiff's claims twice and prevented consolidation with similar putative class actions.
Represented Japanese automotive parts manufacturer and its U.S. subsidiary in direct and indirect purchaser civil antitrust class actions and opt out cases in the United States District Court in the Eastern District of Michigan, one of the largest multidistrict antitrust class action cases in U.S. history. The suits alleged price-fixing in the market for automotive wire harnesses and other parts.
Represented a Japanese electronic components manufacturer and its U.S. subsidiary in a series of direct and indirect class actions and opt-out actions alleging a global, industry-wide conspiracy to fix prices and reduce output of electrolytic capacitors. The class and other actions included claims under Section 1 of the Sherman Act and numerous state antitrust, unfair trade practice, and consumer protection statutes, and seek billions of dollars in joint and several liability damages. Achieved a significant partial summary judgment victory excluding the great majority of sales for which plaintiffs were seeking damages.
Represented corporate officer in defense of putative class action alleging securities fraud, and successfully obtained dismissal of claims.
Represented independent trustees in connection with litigation pursuant to Section 36(b) of the Investment Company Act of 1940. The litigation resulted in a Supreme Court decision mandating that deference be afforded to a board decision to approve an advisory agreement under circumstances in which the board was well informed and followed a robust process.
Represented board of directors of a closed-end mutual fund in connection with their response to a shareholder derivative demand.
Represented Westinghouse Air Technologies Corporation (Wabtec) in a series of over 20 class actions under Section 1 of the Sherman Act alleging a conspiracy to not poach and fix the wages of employees in the railway industry. These numerous class actions were initiated on the heels of the client’s, and alleged co-conspirators, entrance of a civil consent decree with the U.S. Department of Justice.
Defended corporation and chief executive officer in putative securities fraud class action and putative shareholder derivative action stemming from asserted misconduct in failing to prevent, detect, and disclose embezzlement by the vice president of finance.
Defended directors in putative shareholder derivative litigation alleging claims for breach of fiduciary duty based upon the supposed "Ponzi-like" nature of the enterprise.
Defended real estate investment trust and independent trustees in putative consolidated class action alleging claims for securities fraud under federal and state law stemming from purported "Ponzi-like" conduct.
Defended mutual fund investment adviser in litigation pursuant to Section 36(b) of the Investment Company Act of 1940, in which plaintiff challenged the adviser's "manager of managers" business model. Obtained summary judgment in favor of the adviser.
Defended mutual fund investment adviser in "excessive fee" litigation pursuant to Section 36(b) of the Investment Company Act of 1940.
Represented corporation and corporate officers in defense of an action seeking to enjoin a proposed merger, in which the plaintiff alleged that the defendants had breached fiduciary duties to shareholders in connection with the negotiation of the merger agreement.
Represented Cascades Canada LLC, a manufacturer of containerboard and corrugated boxes, against a class action asserting a price fixing conspiracy among seven containerboard manufacturers in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. The complaint alleged that the defendant and certain of its competitors conspired to reduce containerboard capacity and thereby increase the price of containerboard products throughout the United States in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act. Client entered into settlement agreement with plaintiffs for US$4.8 million prior to the court's decision to certify the class. Settlement was granted final approval. Subsequently, a co-defendant settled with class plaintiffs for US$354 million.
Represented investment advisers, funds, and public pension plans in class action bankruptcy litigation seeking to claw back funds paid to shareholders of public companies in connection with those companies' leveraged buyouts.
Represented corporation based in China in defense of putative class action alleging securities fraud claims based upon alleged failure to disclose asserted related party transactions, and putative derivative litigation alleging claims for breach of fiduciary duty based upon the same conduct.
Defended national bank in large nationwide class action alleging violations of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act, and various common law claims in connection with the provision of mortgage services through an affiliated business arrangement, successfully obtaining a jury verdict absolving the client of any liability or wrongdoing in a class action trial.
Defended national laboratory company in putative class action alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act and California Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act arising from invoicing procedures managed through third-party vendors.
Defended manufacturer and supplier of windows in 18 putative class actions alleging defective windows, including defects that caused water intrusion, and asserting tort, breach of warranty, consumer fraud, and false advertising claims. Defense included multidistrict litigation (MDL) proceeding in the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina. Successfully narrowed plaintiffs' claims through motion practice and obtained a favorable nationwide class settlement. Prevailed in later actions enforcing the settlement against several absent class members who filed individual actions after settlement, including before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.
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