Securities

Securities

Contacts: Charles Wm. McIntyre and Andrew J. Trask

The past decade has seen a significant increase in public awareness and governmental scrutiny of the financial practices of publicly held companies. At best, the threat of high-profile securities cases can chill business growth; at worst, administrative actions, lawsuits and criminal proceedings can result in the downfall of an entire company. The securities class action team at McGuireWoods represents clients in jurisdictions across the United States. We advise publicly traded and closely held corporations, officers and directors of these businesses, and their outside advisors and service providers such as accounting firms, hedge funds and investment banking firms. We regularly represent clients before federal and state courts and the Judicial Panel for Multidistrict Litigation in matters involving multimillion-dollar claims. For example, we recently advised a petroleum corporation in a $100,000,000 securities class action; the court ultimately dismissed the entire case on our motions to dismiss.

We also offer expertise in alternative dispute resolution, including arbitration, mediation, and settlement conferences. Our practice includes partners who teach alternative dispute resolution methods at law schools and who have coauthored textbooks on negotiation, such as Betting the Company: Complex Negotiation Strategies for Law and Business (Oxford University Press).

Securities class actions and shareholder derivative suits often involve criminal and civil proceedings that run parallel to the core litigation. We work closely with the firm’s white collar defense team and related practices to defend clients in grand jury investigations and criminal matters pursued by the U.S. Department of Justice and arising out of SEC enforcement activity. As counselors, we draw on our knowledge of SEC and law-enforcement priorities to help clients structure new products, activities, and sales practices to help ensure compliance with existing and emerging regulations.