Litigation and Arbitration
The firm handles major cases in federal and state trial and appellate courts, before government agencies, and in a wide variety of domestic and international arbitration settings. Our experience in civil litigation covers a number of substantive areas, including antitrust and unfair competition, bankruptcy litigation and counseling, mass torts, class action defense, commercial disputes, directors and officers litigation, employment, healthcare litigation, partnership disputes, products liability, real estate and construction litigation, and securities litigation.
Our attorneys have significant experience handling appeals before federal and state appellate courts across the country and regularly represent organizations as amicus curiae in appellate matters presenting legal questions with broad policy implications. The firm has successfully handled appeals in cases where we represented a party in the lower court and in cases where we have specifically been brought in for our appellate proficiency. Many of our attorneys have also clerked for judges on numerous federal district and appellate courts.
With every dispute, in any forum, we offer thoughtful counseling before a decision is made to litigate, and we have substantial experience in negotiating favorable pre-litigation settlements for our clients where appropriate. If pre-litigation settlement is not feasible or advisable, we are skilled at using the pretrial process to put our cases in the best posture for disposition by motion, settlement, or trial. Our litigators are first-rate trial lawyers: we have successfully handled hundreds of trials, arbitration hearings, and administrative procedures in state and federal tribunals across the country and in every major type of arbitration forum. We have an outstanding record in high-stakes, high-profile litigation, including cases involving claimed damages in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
Our trial experience helps us manage the discovery process efficiently and cost-effectively by keeping the focus on the facts that will advance our claims or defenses at trial. That focus — along with our intensity, creativity, and skillful negotiating — helps us settle cases on excellent terms.
Our litigation and arbitration team has been recognized in several leading rankings publications. The Legal 500 described the firm’s strong commitment to client service and praised us as “one of the best mid-sized firms.” It also noted that the firm “differentiates itself by the creativity and flexibility it brings to its work, enabling it to handle disputes across an incredibly wide number of subject areas.” Chambers recognized the firm’s commercial litigation practice as highly regarded, noting that our “level of service is stellar” and our “work product is uniformly superb;” “a great firm with high quality across the board.”
“Congratulations to Tom, Ben, and Louise on their well-deserved promotions,” said Lawrence T Gresser, global managing partner of Cohen & Gresser. “They are a talented group of lawyers who have demonstrated an extraordinary dedication to client service. All three represent Cohen & Gresser’s core values of excellence, integrity, and respect, and we are pleased to recognize their significant achievements and the impact they have within their practices and at the firm.”
Thomas Shortland – Partner, London
Tom Shortland represents corporations and individuals in a range of commercial and business disputes in the English courts, courts in overseas jurisdictions, and in international arbitrations. He also advises on internal and disciplinary investigations, regulatory proceedings, and financial crime matters. Tom has been recognized in The Legal 500 UK’s guide as a “Rising Star” in Commercial Litigation and as a key lawyer in Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime.
Benjamin Zhu – Counsel, New York
Ben Zhu focuses his practice on litigation and white collar defense matters. He has represented corporations and individuals in a range civil and criminal matters, including complex commercial disputes, mass tort litigation, legal malpractice actions, and government investigations. He has been named a Rising Star in New York by Super Lawyers since 2021. Ben is a magna cum laude graduate of the New York University School of Law, where he received the Order of the Coif and was a Notes Editor of the Law Review.
Louise Le Guilchet – Counsel, Paris
Louise Le Guilchet focuses her practice on complex litigation (including general civil and commercial matters, shareholder disputes, and post-acquisition litigation) as well as internal and regulatory investigations. Louise holds a master’s degree in Private International Law and International Trade from the Université Panthéon-Assas and a master’s degree in International Finance from HEC Paris (Grande Ecole).
Financier Worldwide is a leading information source covering corporate finance and board-level business issues. As a leading publisher of news and analysis on this dynamic global market, the organisation is recognised as a valued source of intelligence to the corporate, investment, and advisory community.
• Mark S. Cohen – Commercial Litigation, including Real Estate, Antitrust, and White Collar
• Melissa H. Maxman – Litigation, including White Collar and Antirust
• John Roberti – Antitrust & Competition Law, including Litigation
• Ronald F. Wick – Antitrust & Competition Litigation
Lawdragon is a legal media company providing news content and editorial features, including guides to the nation’s leading lawyers. This is Lawdragon’s first guide dedicated to attorneys principally representing corporations and other organizations in litigating claims involving Antitrust, Securities, Financial, M&A, Intellectual Property and Patents, Product Liability, Mass Tort, White Collar, Government Investigations, and Energy disputes.
NAPABA is the nation's largest Asian Pacific American membership organization representing the interests of 60,000 attorneys, judges, law professors, and law students. The Prospective Partners Program aims to increase the number of Asian American and Pacific Islander partners at major law firms through introduction, mentorship, and relationship building. Joanna is one of only ten individuals selected for the program and will have the opportunity to receive mentorship and form meaningful connections with peers and industry leaders throughout the program.
Leaders League is an independent research and rating agency that provides comprehensive rankings and in-depth analysis of law firms and lawyers. The rankings are based on extensive research by an experienced team of analysts.
Ranked Practice Areas:
• Marketing, communication & digital – Advertising law & marketing
• Media & entertainment – Fashion Law
• Franck Le Mentec: Wealth management – Wealth tax: regulation and litigation; Tax law – LBO tax
• Guillaume Guérin: Compliance – Compliance program
• Johannes Jonas: Private Equity – Development capital transactions
• Loïc Henriot: Dispute resolution – Litigation with regulators and for listed operations; Compliance – Compliance program; Compliance – International investigation and internal investigation; Dispute resolution – Banking & Finance Litigation; Dispute resolution – Commercial litigation; Labor & Employment – Criminal labor law; Dispute resolution – White collar crime
• Muriel Goldberg-Darmon: Dispute resolution – Litigation with regulators and for listed operations; Compliance – Compliance program; Compliance – International investigation and internal investigation; Private Equity – Development capital transactions; Asset management – Asset management
Established in 2014, Cohen & Gresser’s Paris office provides comprehensive legal services for our clients, including advising on corporate, employment, tax, financial services, white collar defense, and litigation-related matters. Our Paris attorneys work closely with the lawyers in our other offices on cross-border transactions, investigations, and litigation, in order to provide superior service to French and international clients.
Benchmark Litigation provides law firm and lawyer rankings based on extensive interviews with litigators, dispute resolution specialists and their clients, as well as analysis of the market’s most important cases and firm developments.
About The Best Lawyers in France The Best Lawyers in France were recognized by their peers in the legal industry for their professional excellence in their respective practice areas.
The guide highlights C&G’s “elite group of practitioners” and use of advanced machine learning techniques and notes that the firm “handle[s] cases that are every bit as complex and challenging as big, national law firms.” Commentators noted that the firm “punches way above its weight” in litigation and investigation matters.
C&G Co-Founder Mark S Cohen is one of only two lawyers in the United States to be recognized as a “Leading Lawyer” in both Securities Litigation: Defense and Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense. Commentary from The Legal 500 recognizes Mark as a “top-tier advocate” who is “at the top of the profession” and “can litigate with the best of them.”
For the first time, C&G’s Antitrust practice has been recognized in Antitrust: Civil Litigation/Class Actions: Defense for its handling of class action cases concerning allegations of cartel behavior, monopolization, and other exclusionary conducts. The Legal 500 cites the leadership of Melissa H Maxman and the addition of “heavyweight” lawyer John Roberti as key reasons for the practice’s recognition.
C&G is again recognized in the Advice to Individuals and Advice to Corporates categories of the Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense section. The Legal 500 commentary notes that the practice is led by “partners with deep experience who obtain excellent results for clients” and is “well placed to handle transatlantic cases” with offices in New York, Paris, and London, and has “particular expertise in financial crime, antitrust enforcement, public corruption, and tax issues.”
The guide has also recognized C&G once again in the General Commercial Disputes category, praising the practice for showing the “discipline and focus necessary to win a case.” Testimonials from the guide highlight the team’s ability to “handle large and complex matters” with “experienced people, good judgment,” and “better use of technology.”
For the 10th consecutive year, C&G has been recognized in the Securities Litigation: Defense category for the firm’s “expertise in the financial services sector” and “recognized trial expertise” in cross-border and domestic securities litigation and enforcement proceedings. The Legal 500 emphasizes the team’s “strong practitioners” and “attentiveness to clients” in the 2022 guide.
- Antitrust: Civil Litigation/Class Actions: Defense
- Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense: Advice to Individuals
- Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense: Advice to Corporates
- General Commercial Disputes
- Securities Litigation: Defense
Antitrust: Civil Litigation/Class Actions: Defense
- Melissa H Maxman
- John Roberti
- Ronald F Wick
- Jonathan S Abernethy
- Jason Brown
- Mark S Cohen
- S Gale Dick
- Jeffrey I Lang
- Melissa H Maxman
- Reggie Schafer
- Mark S Cohen
- S Gale Dick
- Lawrence T Gresser
- Melissa H Maxman
- Daniel H Tabak
- Jonathan S Abernethy
- Mark S Cohen
- S Gale Dick
- Lawrence T Gresser
The Legal 500 analyzes the capabilities of law firms across the world. Its rankings “highlight the practice area teams who are providing the most cutting edge and innovative advice to corporate counsel.”
- Litigation: General Commercial: Highly Regarded
- White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations: The Elite
Jumana Rahman spoke with the Financial Times about the potential implications of a forthcoming UK FCA test case in the English High Court relating to business interruption policies during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Corporate Investigations and White Collar Criminal Defense: Advice to Individuals
- Corporate Investigations and White Collar Criminal Defense: Advice to Corporates
- General Commercial Disputes
- Securities Litigation: Defense
Chambers has recognized Cohen & Gresser in its 2020 USA guide for its achievements in General Commercial Litigation and White Collar Crime & Government Investigations. Chambers commentary highlights the firm's "thoroughness, quality, responsiveness, client care and availability,” noting that "the level of service is stellar, the work product is uniformly superb,” and that C&G is "a great firm with high quality across the board."
Chambers also recognized the following individuals: Jonathan S Abernethy for White Collar Crime & Government Investigations; Karen H Bromberg for Intellectual Property: Patent; Mark S Cohen for Securities Litigation and White Collar Crime & Government Investigations; and Lawrence T Gresser for Commercial Litigation.
Cohen & Gresser's Paris office has been recognized in The Legal 500’s 2020 Europe, Middle East, and Africa guide for its work in seven practice areas: Compliance, Commercial Litigation, Employment, Stock Market Litigation, Tax, White Collar Crime, and IT and Internet. Clients note that the team in Paris “shows great availability and responsiveness” and is “very effective in working through problems and understanding issues to reach reasonable resolutions.”
Cohen & Gresser announces the promotion of Thomas Shortland to counsel in the firm's London office. Tom advises on a broad range of commercial and business disputes, including English High Court litigation, international arbitration, internal investigations, and regulatory proceedings.
- Corporate Investigations/White Collar
- Corporate Investigations/White Collar – Advice to Individuals
- General Commercial Disputes
- Securities Litigation Defense
C&G helped secure a victory in a case alleging that President Trump violated the Foreign Emoluments Clause of the Constitution by accepting benefits from foreign governments without seeking and obtaining congressional consent. C&G represents five legal historians who filed an amicus brief citing extensive historical sources demonstrating that the Founding Fathers shared the plaintiffs’ definition of emoluments. Judge Emmet Sullivan of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, in denying Trump’s motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim, expressly stated that “[t]he Court appreciates the illuminating analysis provided by the amici,” and that “Amici Legal Historians soundly reject the President’s narrow definition of Emolument as inaccurate, unrepresentative, and misleading.”
The National Law Journal published a piece about the importance of our clients’ amicus brief, mentioning Cohen & Gresser’s role, and quoting Washington, D.C. Managing Partner, Melissa Maxman, linked here.
This is the second time a district judge has relied in large part upon our legal historian clients’ brief in construing the Emoluments Clause.
Christian R Everdell has been promoted to partner, and Joanna K Chan, Erica Lai, and David F Lisner have been promoted to counsel.
"Congratulations and thanks to each of these exceptional attorneys for their commitment to excellence, integrity, and superb client service. We are very fortunate to have them," said Managing Partner, Lawrence T Gresser.
Defunct gossip website Gawker will soon start paying $20 million it owes to shareholders — including founder Nick Denton — court proceedings revealed Wednesday. This action follows a jury's decision last March to award Hulk Hogan $140 million in his invasion of privacy suit against Gawker. C&G's Daniel H Tabak was counsel for Mr. Hogan during these proceedings.
- "Gawker to Start Paying $20M Owed to Shareholders, Founder Nick Denton," New York Daily News.
- "Gawker Founder Nick Denton to Leave Bankruptcy," The Wall Street Journal.
Daniel H Tabak is leading the team representing Hulk Hogan in the bankruptcy case against Gawker and Nick Denton. The following news outlets provided coverage:
Cohen & Gresser is pleased to announce the opening of its fourth office in Washington, D.C. The Washington office will be led by partner Melissa H Maxman, and will handle a range of commercial litigation and regulatory enforcement matters, with a focus on U.S. antitrust issues, criminal and civil litigation, and compliance and regulatory disputes in the federal agencies.
In a follow-up interview with Corporate Counsel Business Journal, Thomas E Bezanson joins Hon. George Bundy Smith to discuss the appeal proceedings in Larabee v. Spitzer, a case in which he argued for increased compensation for four New York State judges.
In an interview with Corporate Counsel Business Journal, Thomas E Bezanson joins Hon. George Bundy Smith to discuss his role in Larabee v. Spitzer, a case in which he argued for increased compensation for four New York State judges.
- Last month, the FTC released a new policy statement noting its broadened view of the scope of its power under Section 5 of the FTC Act, signaling that it may find certain private equity rollups violate its interpretation.
- The FTC policy statement came on the heels of a DOJ announcement that it would be increasing the enforcement of Section 8 of the Clayton Act.
- These developments underscore the need for private equity companies to take particular care in observing U.S. competition laws, as there will be greater scrutiny of private equity firms.
In this client alert, Melissa Maxman, Ronald Wick, and Alisa Lu analyze what these actions mean for the future of antitrust enforcement in the private equity sector and provide insight into how PE firms can prepare themselves for continued additional scrutiny.
Reprinted with permission from: NY Business Law Journal, Summer 2022, Vol. 26, No. 1, published by the New York State Bar Association, One Elk Street, Albany, NY 12207.
- Coinbase recently filed a Motion to Dismiss that has significant potential implications for the statutory seller defense in the crypto context.
- In its motion, the company argues that it is not a statutory seller and therefore lacks privity with its customers, absolving it of all liability under the Securities Act and Exchange Act.
- The basis for Coinbase’s motion is contained in its user agreement, which specifically states that when users buy or sell assets on the Coinbase site, they are not buying or selling them "from Coinbase."
- The case presents an interesting question in the context of suits against crypto exchanges: can statutory seller liability be extinguished by a user agreement saying that customers are not transacting with the exchange, even though the exchange maintains the keys and controls the crypto at all times until it is transferred to the customer?
- Earlier this month, the Court of Appeal overturned the previous decision of the High Court in Philipp v Barclays Bank UK Plc.
- The claim concerned the liability of Barclays Bank for carrying out transfers that constituted an ‘authorised push payment’ fraud on Mrs Philipp – transfers that were requested and authorised by her, but induced by a third party through the use of fraudulent representations.
- Mrs Philipp had argued that Barclays was liable for her losses because of its failure to comply with its Quincecare duty – a duty that has risen to prominence as a result of several high-profile cases in recent years.
- While the Act may have disappointed corporate transparency reformers, a number of the Act’s provisions will have a significant impact on those who manage offshore structures and their clients by strengthening individual accountability and increasing exposure to reputational, civil, and criminal litigation risk.
- The Act has had an immediate impact on the Government’s ability to make urgent sanction designations and we anticipate the reforms will breathe new life into the Unexplained Wealth Order regime. However, the question remains whether, beyond the legislation, the NCA, OFSI, and the UK’s other enforcement authorities have the necessary resources to deliver on the Government’s robust agenda.
- While flaws have been identified in the Act, particularly in relation to the effectiveness of the Register of Overseas Entities, the Government has assured the House that new legislation is being drafted (and is likely to be before the House in early summer) to address these deficiencies, including comprehensive reform of Companies House.
- What are the common issues arising in the corporate bankruptcy and insolvency process in today’s market, and how will those issues complicate bankruptcy litigation?
- How have recent court rulings impacted the corporate bankruptcy litigation space, and how are these issues likely to affect parties going forward?
- What are the most significant factors in reaching as positive an outcome as possible for all parties involved in a bankruptcy dispute?
In his latest column for Federal Bar Council Quarterly, C Evan Stewart revisits the infamous Supreme Court ruling on Bush v. Gore.
In his latest column for Federal Bar Council Quarterly, C Evan Stewart revisits the events that ultimately led to the indictment, conviction, reinstatement, and presidential pardon of attorney I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Chief of Staff to former Vice President Dick Cheney.
C Evan Stewart explores the Sarbanes-Oxley protocols and states' ethical standards in his latest column for the NY Business Law Journal.
C Evan Stewart examines the U.S. Supreme Court decisions in the gold clause cases of the 1930s in his latest Legal History column for the Federal Bar Council Quarterly.
C Evan Stewart explores the ethical and legal questions that have challenged attorney-client privilege throughout the years.
Reprinted with permission from: NY Business Law Journal, Winter 2018, Vol. 22, No. 2, published by the New York State Bar Association, One Elk Street, Albany, NY 12207.
Loïc Henriot et Magalie Jullien discutent la nouvelle loi française sur la protection du secret des affaires dans leur derniere C&G Client Alert.
(Loïc Henriot and Magalie Jullien review the new French law regarding the protection of trade secrets in their latest C&G Client Alert.)
In his latest article for the NY Business Law Journal, C Evan Stewart explores the attorney work product doctrine as it relates to investigations by the Securities and Exchange Commission and other government agencies.
This article appeared in NY Business Law Journal, Summer 2018, Vol. 22, No. 1, published by the New York State Bar Association, One Elk Street, Albany, New York 12207.
C Evan Stewart explores Buck v. Bell in his latest piece for the Federal Bar Council Quarterly.
In an article for the Federal Bar Council Quarterly, C Evan Stewart explores the impact of the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment as it relates to the right of economic free will, or "freedom of contract."
Recent arbitration cases, including the “game changer” AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion, suggest new ways a defendant should proceed if the right to arbitrate is at all unclear. Perhaps most import, a defendant should think long and hard about expressly disclaiming the right to arbitrate any claims, even if it seems momentarily advantageous.
A memorandum from in-house counsel advising company employees on how to maintain the attorney-client privilege over their communications with the company’s attorneys, and further explaining the nature of counsel’s relationship with the company and its employees.
This document includes an integrated note with important explanations and drafting tips for creating a letter from a company notifying a potential defendant of its intent to file a lawsuit.
Mr. Stewart opines on the growing consensus that class actions are not always the best means by which to resolve complex litigation.
Melissa H Maxman moderated an American Bar Association panel during the Class Actions National (Virtual) Institute that examined the ethical challenges and boundaries to class action settlements. The panel explored several themes, including attorney communications with absent class members; potential conflicts of interest between class members; and objectors to class action settlements.
Erica Lai moderated a panel discussion about protecting voter rights amidst the COVID-19 pandemic with three of the attorneys leading this important charge. The panel was put on by the Asian Pacific American Bar Association of the Greater Washington, D.C. Area (APABA-DC), with the support of national and local minority bar associations.
C Evan Stewart will speak at a Practising Law Institute CLE program, titled “Securities Litigation 2020: From Investigation to Trial.” The program examines the issues that can arise in the most complex securities matters and will update practitioners on the latest best practices and case law.
C Evan Stewart discussed "Human Nature and Securities Disputes" at a New York State Bar Association webcast, titled "Securities Arbitration 2020: Deep Dive."
C Evan Stewart chaired a Practising Law Institute CLE program, titled “Ethics for Commercial Litigators 2020,” which reviewed complex ethical issues and relevant case law arising out of commercial litigation.
Muriel Goldberg-Darmon, Associée du cabinet Cohen & Gresser à Paris et leader du Chapitre Français du Women’s White Collar Defense Association (WWCDA), a organisé un petit-déjeuner au cours duquel Yousr Khalil & Caroline Fagard, de Forensic Risk Alliance, ont fait une présentation sur l’eDiscovery et Forensic Accounting dans les contentieux et investigations. Des avocates de cabinets français ou internationaux, reconnues pour leur compétence en la matière, ont participé à cet évènement.
(Partner Muriel Goldberg-Darmon, leader of the French Chapter of the Women’s White Collar Defense Association (WWCDA), hosted a breakfast at Cohen & Gresser’s Paris office during which Yousr Khalil & Caroline Fagard from Forensic Risk Alliance spoke about eDiscovery and forensic accounting in litigation and investigations. High-profile female lawyers from major French and international law firms joined the breakfast).