Public companies, private equity firms and business executives rely on Shook, Hardy & Bacon to represent their interests in high-stakes securities litigation nationwide. Our attorneys work closely with clients to develop creative and effective strategies to defend and prosecute securities cases arising out of initial public offerings, financial restatements, mergers and acquisitions, and other transactions.
We bring something to the table that many firms do not: the ability to successfully try complex securities cases to verdict when necessary. Supported by a team of veteran trial lawyers, our clients are not only assured of the best possible representation in the event of trial, they also are often able to obtain better pre-trial settlements as a result.
Among Lawdragon’s "100 Lawyers You Need to Know in Securities Litigation," Shook attorneys are frequently the choice for large matters in the securities litigation arena and bring the same resources to bear for all their clients, regardless of the size of the case.
Since the enactment of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Shook has been retained to represent numerous corporations and their officers and directors, as well as outside professionals – including accountants and attorneys – who have been sued in class action and derivative lawsuits. This representation includes the defense against claims that a corporation has made false and misleading statements in violation of federal securities and/or state fraud laws. We frequently represent clients in suits alleging violations of Section 10(b) of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the 34 Act). We counsel clients in “insider trading” cases under Sections 10(b) and 14(e), and we advise underwriters and issuers in litigation under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933 (the 33 Act). Our attorneys also represent clients in internal investigations, stock option backdating cases and investigations.
We have substantial experience in corporate governance litigation involving both public and private companies. Shook attorneys have litigated a number of derivative actions, some of which accompany and arise from the same conduct at issue in related securities class action suits. We have handled multiple cases arising from contested elections for the boards of directors of public companies, which arise both in federal and state court (primarily Delaware), and may involve Section 14 of the 34 Act and state law principles of fiduciary duties and disclosure. We have litigated other state law governance and shareholder disputes, including disputes over the valuations of companies in a variety of industries, mergers and acquisitions, dissenters’ rights, minority oppression, related-party transactions, and other contexts for suits between owners of an entity or between a company’s owners and its officers and directors.
In addition, we have handled securities arbitration conducted by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). Our lawyers have represented registered representatives, brokers, financial planners and investors, and have served as neutral arbitrators on FINRA panels, including a recent FINRA arbitration concerning anti-money laundering procedures and alleged damages that exceeded $50 million.
Out attorneys have served clients in the following actions:
- National liaison defense counsel in claw-back action brought by creditors of Tribune Company arising out of leveraged buy-out.
- Counsel for Groupon, Inc. in federal and state court derivative actions concerning securities class actions filed after amended earnings reports following IPO.
- Counsel for private equity firm in suit against an Indian tribe, underwriter and bond counsel alleging securities fraud in connection with Indian gaming bond sale.
- Counsel for purchaser in securities fraud action concerning sale of auto parts manufacturer.
- Counsel for private equity firm in securities fraud class action that alleged insider trading in excess of $1 billion. We obtained a complete dismissal of all claims against our client.
Our attorneys also have significant appellate experience in the securities area, including:
- Winning a leading Supreme Court case defining “security” to include demand notes.
- Winning an Illinois appellate court action defining “underwriter” to include insiders creating voting trust.
- Successfully defending utility on appeal in suit alleging securities fraud for failure to disclose pending legal proceedings.
We also advise shareholder clients on their opt-out and objection rights in securities class actions. We have recovered many millions of dollars for clients who have decided their interests were best served by not participating in a class.