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Robert W. Sparkes, III

Robert Sparkes, a partner in the Boston office of K&L Gates, has extensive experience litigating complex civil and commercial matters, with a focus on defending class actions in federal and state courts. Robert is a member of the firm’s financial institution and services litigation, class action litigation defense, and appellate practice groups. He regularly represents banking, mortgage lending, mortgage servicing, and other consumer financial services institutions, as well as all manner of business entities, in consumer class actions, individual litigation matters, and appeals in federal and state courts throughout the United States. These actions frequently involve challenges under federal statutes, including the federal Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act, the Truth in Lending Act, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, as well as claims under state unfair and deceptive acts and practices statutes and common law. Robert also advises consumer financial services entities and other businesses in navigating complex regulatory and compliance issues.

Robert has additional experience representing corporate and individual clients in contract, tort, products liability, intellectual property, trade secret, consumer protection, and other general business litigation, arbitration, and appellate matters.

Robert has participated in jury and bench trials in state and federal court, has appeared before courts in a variety of proceedings, and has also represented clients in settlement negotiations, mediations, and arbitrations.

Robert has co-authored multiple chapters of the K&L Gates’ treatise entitled Defense of Class Action Litigation in Federal Courts, including chapters on “Class Certification” and “Alternative Dispute Resolution.”

Prior to joining K&L Gates, Robert served as a Law Clerk for the Honorable Judge Joseph L. Tauro of the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts, 2005-2006.

  • American Bar Association
  • Boston Bar Association
  • Lawyers Have Heart Boston, 5K Road Race and Fundraising Event for the American Heart Association (Chairman, Captains Committee - 2016-2020; Member, Executive Leadership Committee - 2017 - 2020; Member, Captains Committee - 2015; K&L Gates Team Captain - 2010-2020).
  • Speaker, 2018 Consumer Financial Services Symposium, 3 December 2018
  • Employment Arbitration Agreements: Class Action Waivers, Lorman Education Services Webinar Presentation, by Robert W. Sparkes, III and Mark D. Pomfret, 24 October 2018
  • CFPB Final Payday Rule - New Requirements for Short-Term, Auto-Title, and Other Covered Loans, Lorman Education Services Webinar Presentation, by Robert W. Sparkes, III and Jennifer Janeira Nagle, October 18, 2018
  • Defining or Challenging Class Membership: Evaluating Ascertainability, Overbreadth and Failsafe Class Issues, Strafford Webinar Presentation, by Ira Neil Richards, Robert W. Sparkes, III, and Andrew J. Trask, January 5, 2016
  • The Mortgage Lifecycle: Litigation Hotspots From Origination Through Foreclosure, Powerpoint Webinar Presentation, by Irene C. Freidel, Brian M. Forbes, Robert W. Sparkes, III, and Jennifer Janeira Nagle, February 24, 2016
Additional Thought Leadership Pages
  • Curious Case of the Class Cert. Evidentiary Standard: Part 2, Law 360, by Robert W. Sparkes, III, June 13, 2018
  • Curious Case of the Class Cert. Evidentiary Standard: Part 1, Law360, by Robert W. Sparkes, III, June 13, 2018
  • Employers Beware: FCRA Class Actions Are On The Rise, Law360, by Brian M. Forbes, Robert W. Sparkes, III, Mark D. Pomfret, June 11, 2014
  • In the Wake of Stolt-Nielsen: The Supreme Court Dives into Multiple Arbitration-Related Cases, U.S.- Mexico Bar Association Newsletter, July/August 2010
  • State Class Actions: Practice and Procedure, author of Illinois and Louisiana Chapters.
Additional News & Event Pages
  • Mentioned, "Class Action and Limits on Federal Judicial Power: Demonstrating Insufficient Case or Controversy, Mootness, and Remedy,", 26 May 2022
  • BUMBLE BEE: K&L Gates Attorney Discusses Class Action Ruling, Class Action Prospector, 6 May 2021
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