The Susman Godfrey Difference: Susman Godfrey is America’s premier litigation boutique. Our talented group of lawyers handle high-stakes litigation for plaintiffs and defendants nationwide. With over 150 trial lawyers in four offices from coast to coast, we handle the most challenging cases throughout the country. We offer a broad range of creative, flexible fee structures which align our and our clients’ interests. Traditional hourly billing accounts for a small percentage of our work. Because we often share risk with our clients, we are committed to their success.
At Susman Godfrey, we approach each case as if it is headed for trial. Everything that we do is designed to prepare our attorneys to persuade a jury. When you are represented by Susman Godfrey, the opposing party will know that you are willing to take the case all the way to a verdict if necessary—this fact alone can make a good settlement possible.
We’re Number 1: Susman Godfrey has a longstanding reputation as one of the premier firms of trial lawyers in the United States. We have been named the nation’s best litigation boutique by Vault 12 years in a row (every year since they started ranking). Benchmark Litigation named us Trial Firm of the Year in 2022. American Lawyer named us Boutique Litigation Firm of the Year in 2019. Our lawyers are regularly recognized by legal media and researchers as leaders in their field.
Unique Perspective: Susman Godfrey represents both plaintiffs and defendants. We thrive on variety, flexibility, and creativity. Clients appreciate the insights that our broad experience brings. Our dual perspective informs not just our trial tactics, but also our approach to settlement negotiations and mediation presentations. We are successful in court because we understand our opponent’s case as well as our own.
Unparalleled Talent: Susman Godfrey prides itself on a talent pool as deep as any firm in the country. Clerking for a judge in the federal court system is considered to be the best training for a young trial attorney. Over 95% of our lawyers served in these highly sought-after clerkships after law school. Ten of our trial lawyers have clerked at the highest level—for Justices of the United States Supreme Court.
A Record of Winning: No matter the practice area or side of the courtroom, our lawyers are adept at becoming experts on the relevant subject matter, committing to the client’s ultimate goal, and working tirelessly to exceed expectations. Major victories include:
Secured a $600 million settlement for residents of Flint, Michigan in the nationally followed Flint Water Crisis litigation.
Won a $706.2 million unanimous jury verdict for defendant client, HouseCanary, on counterclaims in a breach of contract and misappropriation of trade secrets case against Quicken Loans affiliate, Title Source, Inc. The judgement appears at number four on The National Law Journal’s “Top 100 Verdicts of the Year” list.
Serve as National Trial Counsel for Walmart in products liability litigation relating to portable gasoline containers and National Monitoring Counsel on all products liability litigation relating to Talc.
Won a $25.25 million jury verdict for client, Steven Lamar, in a contract and intellectual property dispute with Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine over the iconic Beats headphones — this verdict was also included on The National Law Journal’s “Top 100 Verdicts of the Year” list.
Secured a favorable settlement for defendant, Uber, in its epic battle against Google’s Waymo over self-driving car technology.
Won a jury verdict valued at $128 million for client General Electric, in its legal battle against the Nebraska Investment Finance Authority.
Secured one of the largest settlement awards ever to a single whistleblower in a False Claims Act case—over $450 million from Novartis Pharmaceuticals, who was accused of defrauding Medicare and Medicaid by illegally paying kickbacks to pharmacies so they would recommend Novartis’s medications to doctors and patients.
Secured a complete defensive win for Apache Corporation by winning a full a motion to dismiss a royalty class action brought by a putative class of plaintiffs who alleged that Apache breached thousands of mineral leases by allegedly underpaying royalties
Secured a settlement valued at $100 million for a certified class of plaintiffs in a copyright infringement class action against well-known music streaming service, Spotify.
Won a defense-side jury verdict on behalf of The Rawlings Company in a certified class action challenging the company’s classification of its employees. After a three-week jury trial in Kentucky state court, the jury decided in favor of the defense.
Won a $50.3 million federal jury verdict for Green Mountain Glass, in a patent infringement lawsuit against Ardagh Glass. The verdict was #34 on National Law Journal’s “Top 100 Verdicts of 2017” list.
Secured a $91.25 million settlement for insurance policy owners in 37 Besen Parkway, LLC v. John Hancock Life Insurance Company
Secured over $1.2 billion with several international automobile parts suppliers in the In Re Automotive Parts price-fixing class action. The MDL, pending in E.D. Mich., alleges long-running global collusion by auto parts companies to fix prices of automotive component parts.
Recovered $40 million for a class of derivatives investors in a securities class action against Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. The deal is believed to be the largest recovery ever obtained on behalf of derivative investors in history.
Defeated a preliminary injunction request on behalf of defendant, Amazon, in a trademark infringement and unfair competition suit concerning the “Chime by CafeX” web collaboration tool and released by CafeX, and the “Amazon Chime” web conferencing solution released by Amazon.
Weil is a leader in the marketplace for sophisticated, global legal services. Our pioneering “one-firm” approach, which integrates approximately 1,200 attorneys across three continents and multiple practice areas, allows the Firm to partner with many of the world’s most successful organizations on matters as complex and interconnected as the businesses themselves.
Featuring approximately 350 lawyers in more than a dozen practice areas and areas of specialization, Weil’s Litigation Department is one of the largest, most diversified, and highly respected in the legal industry. We provide clients with business-oriented solutions to complex, multi-faceted legal challenges, including business disputes, regulatory actions and investigations, financial distress, and other potentially enterprise-changing circumstances.
Our expertise spans a number of substantive areas:
Antitrust:Weil is regularly retained by some of the largest corporations in the world to handle their antitrust litigation matters. Our Antitrust practice advises clients on the inter-relationship between antitrust, intellectual property, trade, and unfair competition laws and regulations, and litigates and tries those cutting-edge issues in civil and criminal cases before juries and judges in jurisdictions across the United States. Representative clients include Bridgestone, H&R Block, Hilton Worldwide, Meta Platforms, Panasonic, Paramount Global, Pilgrim’s Pride, Sanofi, Simon & Schuster.
Appellate: Weil’s Appellate practice covers all of the Firm’s substantive areas of expertise, including employment, securities, copyright and trademark, patent, tax, bankruptcy, antitrust, civil rights, and constitutional law, among others. With 30 practitioners located across the United States, including former clerks to U.S. Supreme Court justices, over a dozen former clerks to federal appellate judges, a former Assistant Solicitor General for the State of New York, and a former Assistant to the Solicitor General of the United States, we regularly prosecute and defend appeals before the U.S. Supreme Court, all 13 federal circuit courts, and a range of state intermediate and supreme courts.
Bankruptcy: Weil is well-known as the leading restructuring firm in the world. We not only invented much of what is standard today, but we also have been involved in almost every type of consensual and litigated restructuring transaction in the U.S. since the 1970s. Weil has served as chief debtors’ counsel in the largest U.S. bankruptcy filings in history and has represented clients in numerous complicated international insolvencies. Our experience extends to exchange offers, debt for equity swaps, pre-packaged and prearranged chapter 11 cases, as well as conventional chapter 11 reorganizations.
General Commercial: Weil is a one-stop firm for commercial litigation matters, and has achieved significant victories in high-profile disputes for AIG, Carlyle Group, eBay, ExxonMobil Corporation, Farmers Insurance, Nuance Communications, Paramount Global, and WB Discovery, among others. We specialize in trying high-stakes breach of contract, fraud, tortious interference, unfair competition and other business tort claims, class actions, and litigations arising under RICO, the False Claims Act, and numerous other statutes.
Intellectual Property: Weil offers market-leading capabilities in IP litigation – including complex patent, trade secrets, copyright, and trademark disputes – and counseling. For decades, Weil’s prestigious IP/Media group has been at the forefront of hot-button intellectual property and media issues. The group’s work in the area of digital media has been trailblazing, touching on multiple areas of commercial significance including e-commerce, digital rights management, and digital content licensing. We are also recognized for our expertise in false advertising, music licensing, television/ motion picture and other content distribution, and privacy/data protection issues. Representative clients include Alibaba, eBay, Getty Images, Meta Platforms, Pandora Media, Sirius XM Radio, and Twitter. Weil’s Patent Litigation group focuses on high-stakes patent and IP disputes, whether they involve winning a key patent infringement action at trial or on appeal before the Federal Circuit, litigating a complex investigation at the U.S. ITC, or trying contested IPR proceedings at the PTAB. Our team includes more than 30 attorneys, many of whom have technical degrees, allowing us to identify critical issues, understand the technology at the forefront of a case, and become trusted advisors to our clients, which include Altria, Bio-Rad, HP, Johnson & Johnson, Illumina, Regeneron, and Sanofi.
International Arbitration: Weil’s International Arbitration practice possesses vast experience, having been involved in more than 200 major international disputes – including scores of arbitrations – dealing with the laws of dozens of nations. Leading multinationals involved in important international disputes repeatedly turn to Weil for its business-oriented approach, understanding of specific cultural issues, extensive government and trade experience, and recognized skill in handling complex investment and commercial arbitrations before all major arbitral institutions, including the ICC, AAA, LCIA, and ICSID.
Product Liability: Weil’s Product Liability practice handles significant product liability and complex mass tort matters, including nationwide class actions, MDL proceedings, and joint state/federal litigations, and has won some of the largest consumer fraud class actions involving alleged product defects in the United States. Our experience extends to a broad range of areas, including automotive products, industrial chemicals, medical devices, toys, food and beverage, pharmaceuticals, heavy equipment, and airlines. Notable clients include Core-Mark, Dometic, ExxonMobil Corporation, Johnson & Johnson, PepsiCo, Procter & Gamble, Repsol, and Sanofi.
Securities: Weil’s Securities Litigation group has handled numerous high-stakes, precedent-setting assignments including those relating to the insolvency or restructuring of major financial institutions, high profile SEC enforcement proceedings, white-collar securities prosecutions, proxy contests, busted-deal and other M&A litigation, and class action and derivative litigation. The group continues to tackle complex litigation and investigations for clients such as AIG, AMC Entertainment, General Electric, Morgan Stanley, Sanofi, Signet Jewelers, Walgreens, and Willis Towers Watson, as well as shareholder suits arising out of large, sophisticated M&A and SPAC transactions.
White Collar Crime: Led by an elite group of highly ranked criminal defense lawyers with extensive government experience, Weil’s White Collar Defense, Regulatory & Investigations practice conducts complex internal investigations and handles an array of criminal, civil, and regulatory investigations and parallel litigation arising out of accounting and securities issues, allegations of insider trading, money laundering, fraud, market manipulation, and cartelization, and allegations related to U.S. criminal and regulatory laws with international and extra-territorial dimensions, such as the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
Founded in 1982, Berman Tabacco is a national law firm with offices in Massachusetts and California. The firm has devoted its practice to complex litigation, primarily under the securities and antitrust laws, as well as related services requested by and provided to its institutional clients. The firm also has an active whistleblower practice, among others.
Berman Tabacco has 40 years of securities-litigation experience and has represented public pension funds and other institutional investors in that area since 1998. The firm has prosecuted some of the largest securities cases and has recovered billions of dollars on behalf of investors. Indeed, Berman Tabacco appears as one of the firms with the most settlements on the list of the top 100 largest securities class actions in ISS Securities Class Action Services' published report, Top 100 U.S. Class Action Settlements of All Time (as of 12/31/2021). The firm has successfully prosecuted and recovered billions of dollars for defrauded investors in some of the most significant shareholder lawsuits of the last 20 years, having been appointed as lead or co-lead counsel in more than 100 actions. Recent successes include:
In re BP plc Sec. Litigation, No. 4:10-md-02185 (S.D. Tex.) The firm recovered $175 million on behalf of the class—one of just four mega securities class action settlements in 2017 (settlements of $100 million or more), according to Cornerstone Research—in this hard-fought litigation on behalf of shareholders of BP American Depository Shares arising out of BP's Deepwater Horizon explosion, one of the worst oil spills in history. Class members who submitted claims received approximately 115% of their recoverable losses.
California Public Employees' Retirement System v. Moody's Corp., No. CGC-09-490241 (Cal. Super. Ct. San Francisco Cty.) As sole counsel, the firm recovered $255 million from Moody's and Standard and Poor's entities in this landmark individual action on behalf of the California Public Employees' Retirement System in this individual action alleging negligent misrepresentations in connection with rating three structured investment vehicles.
In re Fannie Mae 2008 Sec. Litigation, No. 08-cv-07831 (PAC) (S.D.N.Y.) Representing co-lead plaintiff Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management Board, the firm resolved claims for $170 million alleging that Fannie Mae failed to disclose (i) growing exposure to high-risk mortgages as well as (ii) problems with the company's risk controls, both of which led to federal conservatorship in 2008.
In re IndyMac Mortgage-Backed Sec. Litigation, No. 1:09-cv-04583 (LAK) (S.D.N.Y.) As lead counsel, the firm recovered $346 million on behalf of the class against investment-bank underwriters and officers, which was one of the largest mortgage-backed-securities class action settlements to date and the largest paid by underwriter defendants.
Berman Tabacco's dismissal rate for cases brought under the federal securities laws is less than half the overall dismissal rate for such cases (based on the reported dismissal rate by one authoritative study[A1]). The firm serves as monitoring, evaluation, and/or litigation counsel to over 100 institutional investors, which includes 18 statewide public employee retirement systems with more than $50 billion in assets.
Berman Tabacco's antitrust practice also has a national reputation for prosecuting class actions that involve anticompetitive conduct and conspiracies to fix or maintain prices. Over the years, the firm has played a major role in the prosecution of numerous landmark antitrust cases and has been at the forefront of some of the largest antitrust settlements—recovering over a billion dollars for class members and changing business practices of defendant companies. The following are examples of the antitrust group's recent efforts:
In re Lithium Ion Batteries Antitrust Litigation, No. 13-md-02420-YGR (N.D. Cal.) Berman Tabacco was co-lead counsel for the class of direct purchasers of lithium-ion rechargeable batteries in a class action alleging that defendant manufacturers participated in a conspiracy in violation of federal antitrust laws to fix the prices of lithium-ion rechargeable batteries (which are commonly used in devices such as notebook computers, cell phones, and digital cameras). The firm successfully negotiated settlements totaling $139.3 million, which was approved in May 2018.
Laydon v. Mizuho Bank, Ltd., No. 1:12-cv-03419 (GBD) (S.D.N.Y.) & Sonterra Capital Master Fund, Ltd. v. UBS AG, No. 1:15-cv-05844 (GBD) (S.D.N.Y.) Berman Tabacco is counsel for plaintiffs representing two large public pension funds in actions alleging that bank traders and their affiliates colluded in violation of antitrust laws to manipulate the Euroyen TIBOR and Yen LIBOR rates—benchmark rates used to determine interest rates and to price Japanese Yen-based financial instruments. As of September 2022, partial settlements totaling $386.5 million have been achieved and approved by the court.
Sullivan v. Barclays PLC, et al., No. 13-cv-02811 (PKC) (S.D.N.Y.) Berman Tabacco represents a public pension fund in a class action that it joined as named plaintiff, which alleges that over a dozen major banks colluded in violation of the antitrust laws to manipulate the EURIBOR, a global reference rate used to benchmark and price over $200 trillion of financial products. As of September 2022, partial settlements totaling $546.5 million have been achieved and approved by the court.
Berman Tabacco's whistleblower practice group assists individuals wishing to expose fraud perpetrated against the federal government, states, and corporations, working to obtain the compensation and protections afforded by the False Claims Act, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Whistleblower Program, the Commodities Futures Trading Commission Whistleblower Program, and the Internal Revenue Service Whistleblower Program. Berman Tabacco helps whistleblowers engage appropriate government entities to right wrongs—enforced either by those agencies or through separate litigation. In April 2021, the SEC awarded over $50 million to joint whistleblowers represented by the firm. It was the second largest whistleblower award by the SEC when it was made.
Stris & Maher LLP is a litigation boutique that focuses on must-win trials and landmark appeals. The firm maintains an active practice representing plaintiffs and defendants in courts throughout the country. In 2019 and 2022, The American Lawyer recognized the firm as one of seven finalists for National Boutique of the Year.
Named to The National Law Journal’s Appellate Hot List in 2016, 2018, 2019, and 2021, the firm’s Supreme Court and Appellate practice is widely regarded as among the nation’s most successful. The firm’s appellate team is led by Peter Stris. An elected fellow of both the American and California Academies of Appellate Lawyers, Mr. Stris has represented parties in dozens of high-stakes and high-profile business appeals. Chambers USA calls him “a tactical genius and a great leveler,” ranking him among top appellate specialists both nationally and in California. The National Law Journal has highlighted his ability “to win even when conventional wisdom held that he barely had a shot.” And Reuters has identified him as one of the most influential advocates before the U.S. Supreme Court, where he has argued ten cases.
The firm is also a trial powerhouse. It regularly litigates bet-the-farm business cases to verdict or judgment before state and federal courts nationwide. Recently, the firm successfully defended against 9-figure Lanham Act claims in a multi-phase jury and bench trial. In recognition, Benchmark Litigation shortlisted Mr. Stris for 2022 Los Angeles Litigator of the Year and The Daily Journal included the result in its list of California’s 20 Top Defense Verdicts of 2021. In another must-win case, the firm successfully defended a treatment facility in license revocation proceedings that culminated in a four-week bench trial. Benchmark Litigation named Partner Dana Berkowitz to its 40 & Under List for the victory.
A certified women-owned business led by Managing Partner Elizabeth Brannen, Stris & Maher is a leader in its support for diversity, equity, and inclusion within the legal community. Ms. Brannen is a member of the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity, an organization of approximately 400 corporate chief legal officers and law firm managing partners committed to creating a truly diverse U.S. legal profession. She is a Leader at the Front and has made a public pledge to take specific and meaningful action to support diversity.