Partner (DISPUTE RESOLUTION, ENTERTAINMENT AND MEDIA LAW, CHINA PRACTICE GROUP)
PETER A. CROSS is a partner in the New York office of Eaton & Van Winkle LLP and concentrates his practice in the areas of litigation, entertainment and media law.
The primary focus of Mr. Cross’s practice is the resolution of corporate and commercial disputes and complex product liability matters. He is experienced in complex business arbitration and mediation. In fact, Mr. Cross has served as a mediator in the Southern District of New York for many years. He has served as lead counsel or co-lead counsel in construction defect, landslide and fire litigations involving hundreds of plaintiffs and multiple defendants in both the United States and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. In the real estate field, he has litigated title, leasehold, partnership, mortgage, financing and zoning issues. He has defended corporations in litigation arising from the sale, acquisition and financing of businesses; conducted internal corporate investigations; represented corporations in connection with governmental investigations; and defended and prosecuted distributor and dealer termination cases. In the environmental area, Mr. Cross has worked on CERCLA matters, the defense of claims arising from the sudden release of toxic gases, as well as efforts to obtain and apportion insurance coverage for environmental damage and remediation expenses.
Mr. Cross brings his dispute resolution and litigation skills to entertainment clients as well. He has represented writers, artists, producers, filmmakers and others in a wide variety of matters. For the past several years Mr. Cross has worked with the Chinese Consulate in New York, the Ministry of Culture in China and various cultural organizations and companies in the U.S. and in China to bring Chinese entertainment to the U.S. and vice versa. He was the co-general editor of Entertainment Industries Contracts, a 10 volume series published by LexisNexis until 2010. Mr. Cross is the immediate past Chairman of the Board of the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York, the non-profit advocacy and service organization for Off-Broadway theater serving over 400 member theaters.
In the public interest sector, Mr. Cross has worked with legal and social services organizations including Brooklyn Legal Services, Corporation ‘A’, Queens Legal Services for the Elderly and Catholic Charities to provide representation to victims of predatory lending and real estate practices. His work has resulted in mortgage cancellations, rate and debt relief, as well as the re-purchase of sub-standard buildings by sellers.
Prior to returning in private practice in 1984, Mr. Cross was a member of the General Counsel’s staff of ITT Corporation, where he gained broad experience managing the litigation of a diverse group of manufacturing units. For several years, Mr. Cross also served as counsel to the Asia Pacific-Latin America Group where he worked on the acquisition and disposition of business units.
- Represented a Fortune 500 company in litigation and mediation with another Fortune 500 company over allocation of asbestos related liabilities and claims. The matter was resolved through mediation and a procedure implemented to resolve future claims.
- Represented Fortune 500 company in a private arbitration with another Fortune 500 company over entitlement to insurance proceeds from the settlement of environmental insurance claims. The client obtained over ninety percent of the recoveries, a sum in excess of $190 million.
- Represented a Fortune 500 company in litigation with a public utility authority regarding the sale of the utility to a state-owned entity and obtained summary judgment for the client.
- Represented a Fortune 500 company in successfully shutting down a foreign business that was illegally using the client’s trademark on television sets being sold in Europe and the Middle East.
- Represented a Fortune 500 company in connection with SEC and Justice Department investigations of alleged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Criminal charges were avoided.
- Conducted an internal investigation of alleged Iranian sanctions violations.
- Represented a manufacturer in connection with the settlement of a dispute with a state-owned company in the People’s Republic of China over personal injury and property damages claims arising from a toxic chemical release.
- Represented a building owner in complex personal injury litigation resulting from an arson fire at a night club. Also successfully coordinated the owner’s defense of criminal charges which were dismissed.
- Represented a major homebuilder in resolving litigation resulting from debris flows and landslides in California.
- Represented a major homebuilder in resolving litigation resulting from a deep seated landslide that impacted a housing development in Puerto Rico.
- Represented a major homebuilder in construction and product liability litigation as well as product recalls in multiple jurisdictions in the U.S.
- Represented a pump manufacturer in connection with litigation arising from the sinking of a fishing vessel in the Atlantic with all hands lost. Obtained dismissal of the suit against the manufacturer.
- Successfully represented a major hotel operator in contract litigation with the general manager of one of its premier properties.
- Served as national counsel and trial counsel for the parent company of a computer manufacturer in repetitive stress injury litigation in various U.S. jurisdictions. Obtained summary judgment for the manufacturer in New York and other jurisdictions.
- Served as national counsel and trial counsel for a manufacturer in connection with product liability litigation relating to boiler controls in various jurisdictions.
- Defended against the attempted foreclosure of a first mortgage on a major shopping center and obtained a successful settlement.
- Served as plaintiffs’ counsel in a class action suit against a sub-prime mortgage company for violating New York banking regulations in connection with such loans and obtained a settlement for the class.
- In a series of cases in the Eastern District of New York represented victims of real estate and mortgage lending predatory practices and obtained settlements in all such cases.
- Represented the SIPC Trustee in bankruptcy proceedings relating to the liquidation of a brokerage firm.
- On a pro bono basis represented a man wrongfully convicted of murder and obtained his exoneration of all charges.
J.D., New York University School of Law, 1972
B.A., Fordham College, 1969
Member, New York State Bar Association
Member, American Bar Association
Member, Federal Bar Council
Board Member and Treasurer, The Fund For Modern Courts
Former Board Member and Chairman, Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York (1994 – 2008)
Co-Chair, Business Advisory Council, Brooklyn Legal Services, Corporation ‘A’
New York, 1973
New Jersey, 1977
U.S. Supreme Court, 1977
U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, 1973
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, 1973
U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey, 1977
U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, 1986
U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, 1975
U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit, 1995