Firm News and Recent Decisions
August 17, 2016
TDR partners Caesar Tabet, Mark Horwitch and John Fitzgerald recently obtained the dismissal of an accounting malpractice suit in Indiana state court filed against one of the country’s largest public accounting firms.
The plaintiffs were seeking millions of dollars in damages, and the lawsuit had been pending for about two years when TDR stepped in as counsel for the accounting firm. TDR immediately filed a motion to dismiss the plaintiffs’ entire amended complaint with prejudice. Following briefing and oral argument, the Indiana trial court dismissed the claims against TDR’s client with prejudice, thus ending long-running litigation against TDR’s client.
This dismissal came only five months after TDR became involved in the matter.
TDR has an impressive track record of successfully representing public accounting firms accused of professional malpractice.
August 16, 2016
TDR partners Caesar Tabet, Daniel Stanner, and John Fitzgerald, and TDR associate Uri Abt successfully represented a minority owner of a Delaware Limited Liability Company. The controlling members planned to sell the assets of the company and then to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The controlling members scheduled a shareholder meeting to approve that transaction.
The minority owner requested information regarding the proposed action. The controlling members refused that request. They attempted to dismiss the minority shareholder's concerns by claiming that the bankruptcy was in the best interests of the minority owner because it would save him from further liability. The controlling members then expedited the date for the shareholder meeting to vote on the proposal.
TDR filed an arbitration with the American Arbitration Association to resolve the dispute as required by the Operating Agreement. TDR then filed an action in the US District Court for the District of Arizona seeking a temporary restraining order to preserve the status quo pending arbitration. The District Court granted the temporary restraining order prohibiting the company from entering into the stalking horse agreement or from filing for bankruptcy. In securing the temporary restraining order, TDR was able to preserve the minority owner's rights to full information, an informed vote, and a meaningful dispute resolution process.
TDR often represents minority shareholders in corporate governance and shareholder oppression lawsuits and, as in this case, TDR obtains victories in litigation and successfully obtains emergency injunctive relief when necessary to accomplish our clients’ goals.
TCPA Class Actions Provide Backdrop for Illinois Courts’ Struggle with the Adequacy Requirement for Both Counsel and Plaintiff
July 19, 2016
TDR attorney Jordan Wilkow authored an article in the June 30 edition of the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. The article examines conflicting views among Illinois state and federal courts regarding the severity of the adequacy requirement in class certification analysis as applied to both class counsel and the class plaintiff. Class actions brought under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, which have become rather ubiquitous in Illinois in recent years, have provided the vehicle through which these views have been expressed. The article unpacks the tension between more ideological and more practical understandings of the adequacy requirement, and the notion of decertifying a class in the name of protecting it.
June 24, 2016
Meredith Martin “Mimi” Addy, a partner at Tabet DiVito & Rothstein LLC and an accomplished intellectual property litigator, has been named one of the “Top 250 Women in Litigation” for 2016 by Benchmark Litigation.
Addy has two decades of experience in complex litigation, including numerous trials in cases in federal district court, at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board, and before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. She represents entrepreneurial and innovative companies in sectors such as software, technology, biotechnology, and pharmaceuticals.
Because of her knowledge of patent litigation and the Federal Circuit, Addy has also testified before Congress on the state of the Federal Circuit and patent appeals. She writes the blog BusinessDeNovo on issues relating to innovation, business, and patent law.
Benchmark’s Top 250 Women in Litigation, now in its fifth edition, honors the accomplishments of leading U.S. female litigators representing most of the 50 states, plus the District of Columbia. The publication bases its list primarily on the results of research it conducted for the 2016 edition of Benchmark Litigation, the parent publication of Top 250 Women in Litigation. Peer review and overall depth of litigation career are important factors in this research.
More information is available at https://www.benchmarklitigation.com/general/topwomen.
New Partner Deepens TDR's Intellectual Property Practice
May 2, 2016
Tabet DiVito & Rothstein LLC is proud to announce that highly accomplished patent litigator Meredith “Mimi” Addy is joining the firm as a Partner.
Addy deepens our intellectual property practice and strengthens our existing team of highly skilled trial and appellate lawyers. She has two decades of experience in complex litigation, including cases in federal district court, at the U.S. Patent Office’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board, and before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.
Addy represents clients in many fields, including the software, technology, biotechnology and pharmaceuticals sectors. She has served as first- or second-chair trial counsel in nearly 30 federal district court cases, and has handled more than 40 appeals to the Federal Circuit. TDR’s clients involved in patent disputes and other intellectual property matters will benefit from Addy’s extensive experience and knowledge of the federal court system.
Addy is a member of the Federal Circuit Bar Association’s board of directors, and she has been a member of the Federal Circuit’s Advisory Council for more than a decade. Because of her knowledge of patent litigation and the Federal Circuit, she has testified before Congress on the state of the Federal Circuit and patent appeals.
Addy earned her JD cum laude from the University of Georgia School of Law. In 2015, she received her MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. She also holds an LLM with honors from The John Marshall Law School. She earned her B.S. in electrical engineering and a B.A. in fine arts from Rice University.
Articles from national and local press covering the move include (registration and / or subsription may be required):
As always, TDR remains dedicated to helping its clients with their most difficult legal challenges, including intellectual property counseling and litigation at trial and on appeal.
Counter-Intuitive Considerations for Plaintiffs, Defendants Considering FLSA Class Discovery
February 18, 2016
TDR attorney Jordan Wilkow authored an article in the February 10 edition of the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin (subscription may be required). The article, “Defendants, Plaintiffs Should Tread Lightly During Class Discovery in FLSA Actions,” examined a development in the law underlying conditional class certification under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
A recent N.D.Ill. decision applied an “intermediate” standard of review to deny conditional class certification, a question generally subject to only a “lenient” standard. The Court predicated its heightened review on the fact that the parties had bifurcated discovery, and class discovery had already been completed.
The article posits that, if this approach gains traction in the District, Defendants could find that enduring some discovery upfront in return for a less forgiving standard of review on the plaintiff’s motion for conditional certification makes good strategic sense. On the other hand, plaintiffs seeking at least the leverage that comes with conditional certification will want to be cautious about how much pre-certification discovery they request, lest they subject their motion for conditional certification to more scrutiny than it can withstand.
January 22, 2016
Once again, SuperLawyers® Magazine has recognized nearly three-fourths of TDR partners for their high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement.
•Karina Zabicki DeHayes
•Gino L. DiVito
•Mark H. Horwitch
•Timothy A. Hudson
•Christopher D. Liguori *
•Michael I Rothstein
•Caesar A. Tabet
•John M. Fitzgerald *
•Brian C. Haussmann
•Daniel I. Konieczny
* - First time honoree in this category
The list of Illinois SuperLawyers includes no more than five percent of the lawyers in the state. Rising Star is a distinction reserved for the top 2.5% of Illinois lawyers who are under 40 or in practice for 10 years or fewer.
Edit: TDR Partner Meredith Martin "Mimi" Addy, who joined the firm in May, 2016, was also named an Illinois SuperLawyer. In addition, Ms. Addy was named in three Illinois Super Lawyers Top Lists: “Top 10: 2016 Illinois Super Lawyers,” “Top 50: 2016 Women Illinois Super Lawyers,” and “Top 100: 2016 Illinois Super Lawyers.”
November 20, 2015
The Illinois Supreme Court has appointed Michael Rothstein to a second three-year term on the Supreme Court Rules Committee. The Rules Committee develops and reviews proposals regarding Illinois court rules and rules governing attorney professional responsibility. Mr. Rothstein has served on the Rules Committee since January 1, 2013. His new term runs through December 31, 2018.
Administrative Remedies Must Be Exhausted Before Filing Claim
October 22, 2015
TDR attorneys Uri B. Abt and John Fitzgerald co-authored a column in the October 21st (subscription may be required) edition of the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. The column, “Federal Act Should Have Put End to Claim Quickly,” examined a recent Illinois Appellate Court decision on a matter of first impression under Illinois law – namely, whether failure to comply with a claim “bar date” under the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act of 1989 (FIRREA) deprived a court of jurisdiction to consider a challenge to an arbitrator’s decision on a claim against a failed bank. The Appellate Court held that, under FIRREA, failure to submit a claim against a failed bank to the FDIC before the “bar date” established by FDIC prevents any court from having jurisdiction to hear not just the claim, but any motion regarding an arbitrator’s decision about the claim. The court went on to hold that the court lacked jurisdiction even if the claim against the failed bank was asserted against a successor-in-interest.
Supplement to Chicago Daily Law Bulletin and Chicago Lawyer
October 6, 2015
TDR partner John Fitzgerald was named as one of the top 40 lawyers under forty years of age in Illinois. Clients and professional colleagues nominated Mr. Fitzgerald for the honor. More than 1,200 lawyers were nominated for the award. Mr. Fitzgerald was recognized for, among other things, his work in representing members of the Illinois Teachers’ Retirement System in the state’s contentious pension reform litigation.
The article quotes Grace Liu, an attorney with the University of California, as saying, “John has all the skills that make a top litigator. He spots nuanced issues. He frames those issues in understandable and personal terms. He is a highly effective writer. He argues concisely and persuasively in court.”
Other attorneys call John “unstinting and unselfish” and note that “his legal acumen and abilities, the manner in which he navigates complex legal issues and situations, and the maturity with which he carries himself all suggest experience beyond his years.”