Professional Liability

Eaton & Van Winkle attorneys have extensive experience in legal malpractice defense, defending accountants, attorneys, and directors and officers in securities and commercial matters. We represent  clients in court or in alternative dispute forums, directly or under insurance policies and are sensitive to confidentiality issues. Working with client and often carrier input, our attorneys develop powerful litigation strategies or, where appropriate, settlement strategies. Those seeking an investment fraud lawyer find what they need at EVW. Our attorneys regularly handle Exchange Act securities fraud claims under Rule 10b-5, as well as under Securities Act Sections 11 and 12. EVW attorneys have substantial knowledge of auditing and accounting principles.

Auditors. Eaton & Van Winkle has represented auditors in cases involving allegations that they have failed to properly audit financial statements and/or have allegedly failed to advise a client of possible fraud during audits or on quarterly reviews. We have obtained dismissal in cases involving alleged failure to identify related-party transactions under GAAP, multiple class suits for alleged Exchange Act violations where claims have been based on differences between US GAAP in SEC filings and SAIC filings and Securities Act cases. We have represented clients in private, derivative and class suits, seeking direct liability, as well as in actions seeking contribution/indemnification from our clients as third-parties and/or on cross-claims by, for example underwriter co-defendants. Where dismissal may not be not feasible and settlement is a practical alternative, we are experienced in crafting favorable settlements.

Investment Bankers, Hedge Funds , Broker-Dealers, and Senior Executives. Eaton & Van Winkle attorneys have substantial experience litigating cases for investment banks and their bankers, hedge funds, closed-end mutual funds, and broker-dealers and their executives. Our attorneys have successfully litigated private and class securities claims against companies and their officers, including charges of Exchange and Securities Act fraud and market manipulation, claims under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), and many other statutes. We have successfully handled multi-jurisdiction cases, achieving dismissal on Exchange Act manipulation claims in several billion-dollar cases. Our attorneys have prosecuted and defend cases involving involving exotic instruments ranging from complex/synthetic equity derivatives in federal court to municipal arbitrage alternative investment structured products in FINRA arbitrations. We have defended senior officers of major energy companies, banks and hedge funds against claims and charges ranging from simple contract breach and tort claims to claims of market manipulation to civil and criminal RICO violations. Our attorneys have published extensively in the securities litigation and RICO literature.

Lawyers and Legal Malpractice. Eaton & Van Winkle attorneys have defended high-profile legal malpractice cases. In one recent action, we succeeded in dismissing a high-profile case brought by a real estate lender seeking $50 million in out-of-pocket fees against a law firm which issued an opinion concerning underlying loan transactions which were, in fact, non-existent, and part of an $800 million series of fraudulent loan deals. New York’s First Department found the law firm had done nothing improper and dismissed all allegations of fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and negligence against the law firm client at the pleading stage. Partner Lawrence Steckman handled the matter.


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