Commercial Law and Business Torts

We represent clients as both plaintiffs and defendants in all manner of contractual and other complex commercial disputes affecting businesses, and often our matters have an international component. We regularly litigate cases involving commercial contracts of all types, including licensing and distribution agreements, lender agreements, letters of credit, promissory notes, financing arrangements, joint venture agreements, and secured transactions, as well as other torts arising out of the business relationship such as fraud and negligence claims (including failure to warn and other products liability claims), business dissolutions and valuation disputes. We also regularly counsel our clients in connection with the litigation risks of amending, terminating, or extending existing contracts, as well as in connection with structuring their affairs to minimize potential legal claims. Our clients are privately and publicly held, foreign and domestic, and come from multiple industries, including banking and finance, health care, hedge funds and private equity, insurance, mining, oil and gas, real estate, and software and technology. We also consult routinely with our Corporate Group in connection with their transactional work, to ensure that our clients’ contractual and other financial arrangements are structured to appropriately manage litigation risk.

Examples of our recent cases include:

  • We are defending an investment company owner and privately held finance company against claims for conspiracy to commit fraud brought by a limited liability investment company owned by a national real estate developer.  We are defending a business owner in connection with a $2 billion dispute with a major German investment bank over disputed margin calls.
  • We are defending multiple European, Asian, and South American private clients and financial institutions facing substantial “claw back” actions brought in connection with the Madoff Ponzi scheme.
  • We are prosecuting claims for fraud, misappropriation and breach of contract on behalf of an investment company against a former consultant.
  • We are defending a large Swiss insurance company against a class action lawsuit for breach of contract in connection with failure to pay claims.  This case involves coordinating with counsel defending the client against multiple individual lawsuits brought across various jurisdictions in Europe.
  • We are prosecuting RICO and other claims against a London-based insurance broker on behalf of a major European financial services company.
  • We are prosecuting fraud and breach of contract claims on behalf of a publicly-traded company in connection with a failed enterprise management software project, and defending against counterclaims.
  • We defeated successive class action claims for fraud and breach of contract brought against a major Swiss insurance company in federal court.
  • We defended a consortium of bilateral lending agencies against litigation threatened by a large Mexican mortgage company in connection with its debt restructuring, and successfully resolved the matter without litigation.
  • We prosecuted breach of contract claims on behalf of a French-American oil refining and trading joint venture against a major British oil company, leading to a multi-million dollar settlement for our client.
  • In UNICTRAL arbitration on behalf of a bilateral finance organization, we obtained a pre-award attachment of assets from a counterparty and prevailed in our interpretation of the meaning, under Ecuadorian law, of a clause in a put option contract, resulting in a financial award for our client.
  • We defended RICO and fraud claims brought in federal court against German energy companies, including obtaining a judgment notwithstanding the verdict following a jury trial.
  • We prosecuted violations of the automatic stay on behalf of a debtor against an oil trading company in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, appealing first to the federal district court, and then to the court of appeals, resulting in successful enforcement of the automatic stay.
  • We defeated RICO claims brought against an Austrian juice importer in federal court.
  • On behalf of an Austrian manufacturer, we defended and successfully resolved American claims of product liability.
  • We defended a Dutch pharmaceutical company facing multi-district product liability claims connected to the sale of generic pharmaceuticals, including acting as national coordination counsel.
  • We defended and resolved claims brought by a major financial institution against several businesses and guarantors based on alleged breaches of a loan agreement and a security agreement.