Securities Litigation & Investor Protection

Powerful advocates for corporate accountability.

When companies commit fraud or executives breach their fiduciary duties, we partner with investors to hold the wrongdoers accountable – pursuing class or derivative actions that recover significant monetary damages and achieve meaningful change.

We have returned billions of dollars to defrauded shareholders through the development of groundbreaking legal theories, efficient and effective case-management techniques, zealous advocacy, and skillful litigation.

We have achieved some of the largest securities class action settlements in history, including the historic, all-cash $1 billion settlement against Wells Fargo, now the 17th largest securities class action settlement of all time and the 6th largest in the last decade; and the $500 million Bear Stearns Mortgage Pass-Through Certificates Litigation, one of nine cases we led that recouped more than $2.5 billion for investors in mortgage-backed securities. We also represent shareholders of publicly traded companies in derivative lawsuits that hold accountable corporate leaders who breach their fiduciary duties, harming the company and investors. We crafted settlements with Alphabet ($310 million), Wynn Resorts ($90 million), L Brands ($90 million), and other companies that combined large financial commitments with sweeping corporate governance reforms aimed at preserving long-term shareholder value.

We work with our colleagues in the Antitrust practice to represent institutional investors in class actions that use the antitrust laws to break big banks’ costly stranglehold on the multi-trillion-dollar markets for stock lending, interest-rate swaps, and other opaquely traded financial products. Our work doesn’t stop at the U.S. borders. Drawing on a deep expertise, we help investors determine their best approach to pursuing foreign securities cases. The counsel we selected for our clients in a case against Fortis N.V. in Belgium achieved the largest ever non-U.S. securities settlement, €1.3 billion ($1.5 billion).

Beyond litigation, we provide customized and comprehensive portfolio monitoring and case evaluation services to approximately 200 institutional investors. All of our portfolio monitoring services are performed exclusively in-house and designed to ensure clients meet their fiduciary obligations to their members by making informed choices when faced with substantial losses and in determining whether to remain an absent class member, seek lead plaintiff status, or opt-in to foreign litigation. 

Our work on behalf of investors has earned thanks from our pension fund clients, respect from opposing counsel, and praise from judges.  

  • California Superior Court Judge Brian C. Walsh said our “groundbreaking” $310 million settlement in the Alphabet Derivative Litigation codified a “best in class approach … to address sexual harassment sexual misconduct, discrimination, retaliation, inequity and inclusion in the workplace.”  He called the result “a credit to what … your profession can do to solve a problem.” 
  • And in approving the $335 million RALI MBS settlement, U.S. District Judge Katherine P. Failla praised Cohen Milstein’s prescience and perseverance in pursuing the case: “I don’t want to demean this by saying that fortune favors the brave, but that is what happened here,” she said.  “Plaintiffs’ counsel took on an enormous amount of risk and stuck with it for nearly seven years.”

Current Cases

Matterport Shareholder Derivative Litigation

Matterport Shareholder Derivative Litigation (Del. Ch.): On February 6, 2024, Cohen Milstein and co-counsel filed a verified stockholders’ derivative complaint nominally, on behalf of Matterport Inc., against the Company’s directors, officers, their affiliated entities, and others, who were unjustly enriched by the Board of Directors’ approval of a self-interested transaction.

In re Abbott Laboratories Infant Formula Shareholder Derivative Litigation

In re Abbott Laboratories Infant Formula Shareholder Derivative Litigation (N.D. Ill.): Cohen Milstein is Lead Counsel in this shareholder derivative lawsuit against Abbott’s board of directors for breaching their fiduciary duties related to the company’s manufacture and sale of infant formula products, prompting a major recall and nationwide infant formula shortage and allegedly causing billions of dollars of damage to Abbott. Plaintiffs also allege claims of insider trading, corporate waste, and unjust enrichment, as well as violations of the federal securities laws.

In re Fox Corporation Derivative Litigation

In re Fox Corporation Derivative Litigation (Del. Ch.): Cohen Milstein is leading a shareholder derivative lawsuit representing New York City’s five pension funds and the State of Oregon, by and through the Oregon State Treasurer and the Oregon Department of Justice, on behalf of the Oregon Investment Council and the Oregon Public Employee Retirement Fund, against various directors and officers of Fox Corporation, the corporate parent of Fox News Network, LLC. Plaintiffs allege that Fox News’ leadership breached its fiduciary duties by adopting a business model that promoted or endorsed defamation by failing to establish systems or practices to minimize defamation risk despite the known risk of liability, including broadcasting false claims about election technology companies Dominion Voting Systems and Smartmatic USA.

Past Cases

MF Global Securities Litigation

MF Global Securities Litigation (S.D.N.Y.): Cohen Milstein represented the Central States, Southeast and Southwest Areas Pension Fund and achieved a $90 million settlement in this precedent–setting securities class action in which the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit sided with the plaintiffs and held that companies cannot make false or misleading statements in their offering documents and then hide behind risk disclosures related to those facts to escape liability. The National Law Journal singled out Cohen Milstein’s work on the case in connection with its selection of the firm as a Hot Plaintiffs’ Firm for that year. Cohen Milstein was Co-Lead Counsel.

In re China Mediaexpress Holding, Inc. Shareholder Litigation

In re China Mediaexpress Holding, Inc. Shareholder Litigation (S.D.N.Y.): Cohen Milstein was Co-Lead Counsel in this certified securities fraud class action and represented investors against U.S. listed China Mediaexpress (CME), purportedly on of the largest television advertising networks in China in an alleged “pump and dump” scheme, whereby it inflated its revenue and earnings to pay management earn-outs and inflate the stock price so insiders can sell. Investors further alleged that Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu (DTT), its independent auditor, misled investors about its client’s financial health and did not follow PCAOB auditing standards or GAPP. In January 2014, the Court ordered a default judgment and $535 million settlement against CME and in May 2015 a $12 million settlement against DTT. The Court issued a final judgment, concluding all litigation in September 2015.

In Re Teva Securities Litigation

In Re Teva Securities Litigation (D. Conn.): Cohen Milstein represented the Public School Teachers’ Pension and Retirement Fund of Chicago and the State of Oregon and the Oregon Public Employee Retirement Fund in two separate, but related matters to recover damages caused by Teva Pharmaceutical and certain officers for alleged misstatements and omissions about the company’s financial performance, business growth strategy, competitive factors, as well as its failure to disclose that state attorneys general and U.S. Department of Justice were investigating it for participating in a vast industrywide price-fixing conspiracy. In December 2022, Teva settled the matters for a confidential sum.