Cohen Milstein’s Antitrust, Civil Rights & Employment, Products Liability, and Securities Litigation Groups Recognized as “Leading Practices”

The Legal 500

May 29, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC has been recognized by The Legal 500 as a leading firm in the following practice areas:

In addition, the following partners were singled out as Legal 500 Leading Lawyers:

The following partners were singled out as Legal 500 Next Generation Lawyers:

Finally, Shaylyn Cochran was named a Legal 500 Rising Star.

The Legal 500 editorial team observed:

Antitrust: Civil Litigation / Class Actions: Plaintiff

Daniel Small and Benjamin Brown are at the helm of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC’s practice, which represents a vast array of plaintiff clients including large conglomerates, small businesses and individuals. Kit Pierson and Brent Johnson recently obtained a favorable settlement for Sierra Drywall Systems in a class action against drywall and plaster suppliers on the grounds of a conspiracy to raise prices. In other highlights, Small collaborated with Johnson to advise an individual in a high-profile ‘no-poach agreement’ case against Pixar, Lucasfilm and other major animation and visual effect studios which colluded to not poach each other’s employees. In New York, Sharon Robertson and of counsel Donna Evans acted as counsel to the end-payor class in pay-for-delay multi-district litigation in the pharmaceutical space. Richard Koffman is also a key name to note; he continues to assist current and former mixed martial artists in their class action against the UFC on the basis of its allegedly restrictive employment contracts.

Dispute Resolution: Product Liability, Mass Tort and Class Actions: Plaintiff

Leveraging its extensive experience in class actions, Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC is regularly involved in environmental, automotive and consumer products litigation. Recent highlights include filing a putative nationwide class action against Apple alleging that iOS software operating system updates slow down the processing on iPhones, acting as co-lead class counsel in a toxic tort lawsuit brought against DuPont and its subsidiary Chemours by North Carolinians alleging exposure to toxic chemicals from water supply, and defending plaintiffs against hardwood flooring retailer Lumber Liquidators in a product liability litigation concerning the presence of carcinogenic chemicals in Chinese-manufactured laminate flooring. Theodore Leopold and Leslie Kroeger in Palm Beach and Andrew Friedman in Washington DC jointly lead the practice group.

Dispute Resolution: Securities Litigation: Plaintiff

Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC ‘evaluates cases in a very selective way’, according to defense counsel. The firm has a track record of securing large settlements in securities class actions and it further built on that reputation last year. Up-and-coming partner Michael Eisenkraft in New York, along with standout partners Steven Toll and Julie Reiser in Washington DC, secured a $165m settlement in New Jersey Carpenters Health Fund v. NovaStar Mortgage, Inc, et al, which concerned mortgage-backed securities issued before the financial crisis; in September 2018, the Second Circuit dismissed as moot an interlocutory appeal by FHFA seeking to stay the final approval process. Daniel Sommers in DC, who with Toll is co-chair of the firm’s securities litigation and investor protection group, acted for Arkansas Public Employees Retirement System in Nancy Schwartz v. Opus Bank, et al, and secured a $17m settlement to resolve allegations that Opus falsely represented that it had a disciplined and conservative approach to credit.

Labor and Employment: Labor and Employment Disputes: Plaintiff

Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC ‘provides top-notch service across the board’. The team has a broad practice which covers a variety of employment matters and is led by the ‘incredibly knowledgeable’ Joseph Sellers. It continues to represent a class of 69,000 female sales employees in a nationwide Title VII and Equal Pay Act dispute against Sterling Jewelers. Associate Shaylyn Cochran and Sellers, on behalf of blind students of BarBri, settled claims against the company for denying them fair and equal access to components of BarBri’s test prep offerings. Cochran is appreciated for always ‘looking for new ways to press an important case forward’. Christine Webber, known to be ‘strategic and collaborative’, is experienced in wage-and-hour collective actions. Besides being active in plaintiffs’ employment litigation, Kalpana Kotagal’s diversity efforts are particularly noteworthy, and she co-authored the ‘inclusion rider’, a provision used in actors’ and filmmakers’ contracts committing to a certain level of diversity on set. Of counsel Michael Hancock’s ‘US Department of Labor experience brings an incredible depth of knowledge and strategy’. All lawyers are based in Washington DC.

A summary of the firm’s 2019 Legal 500 rankings can be accessed here.