The firm secured a $335 million settlement as lead plaintiffs' counsel in the consolidated litigation against Bank of New York Mellon over alleged overcharging of foreign securities exchange rates to traders.
Upon approving the settlement in September, U.S. District Judge Lewis Kaplan of the Southern District of New York said, "plaintiffs' counsel deserve a world of credit for taking [the case] on, for running the risk, for financing it and doing a great job."
Partner Joseph Meltzer said the BNY Mellon litigation was "right in our wheelhouse: a big case against a well-financed, well-represented defendant with a lot of money at stake and a lot of factual and legal nuance."
Even though most of their matters go to settlement, Kessler Topaz "is very focused on trying cases," said Lee Rudy, also a partner at the firm.
In one such case, the firm helped win $148 million in damages for Dole Food Co.'s former shareholders alleging Dole's directors breached their fiduciary duty by driving down the corporation's stock price on the eve of approving the Dole CEO's buyout of the company.
"We were willing to make the big bet and take it all the way through trial. Our clients were well-served by it and our class was well-served by it," said Rudy.
Jay Eisenhofer of Grant & Eisenhofer, a frequent co-counsel of Kessler Topaz, said he had "nothing but positive things to say" about the firm. "I think they're terrific, great lawyers, very honorable people."
Based: Radnor, Pennsylvania
Total number of attorneys: 100
Be very careful when disagreeing with the judge — jurors almost always take the judge's side.
Avoid choosing examples from "our lives," like "imagine if your mother/spouse/child said that." You don't know which jurors are estranged from their mothers, divorced or childless. These hypotheticals can backfire.
Don't let the courtroom technology get in the way of your story.
Try not to knock the water pitcher all over your exhibits. — Lee Rudy