For each matter—classic litigation, white collar criminal defense, financial regulatory response, or employment & labor—we assemble a knowledgeable and accessible team with the skills and experience to provide high quality, cost-efficient solutions.

Overview

Our 50 litigation attorneys provide clients with solutions across a full spectrum of their legal needs: business disputes, regulatory challenges, investigations, criminal defense, and financial regulatory advice and support. Our strengths cover financial regulation, healthcare capital markets, real estate, environmental, class actions, antitrust, trusts and fiduciaries, trade secrets, employment, intellectual property, corporate governance, and insolvency, as well as regulatory defense, corporate investigations, and criminal defense.

We represent a variety of clients from individuals to Fortune 50 companies, start-ups, and entrepreneurs to global operations of multi-national companies in Europe, South and North America, and Asia. We pride ourselves on listening and hearing what each of our clients has to tell us. We do more than investigate and litigate; we help our clients avoid business or government disputes through timely advice on new developments, recommendations on best practices in compliance and dispute resolution, and early resolutions when that is what is in our client’s best interests.

Positive outcomes require resource-intensive effort, but we recognize that clients do not allocate unlimited funds to dispute resolution. We work closely with our clients to develop and manage strategies, project plans, and budgets consistent with each client’s expectations and objectives. We use a range of technologies, experts, and consultants, including document-management databases and advanced deposition and trial management software. We strive to stay on the cutting edge of such technology because our clients have the right to expect we are as up to date as they are.

We are committed to diversity and inclusion. Moore & Van Allen is perennially among the leaders in pro bono service to the community as a law firm, and our litigation group is among the leaders in community service within the firm.

Representative Work

Representative Work

Civil Litigation

  • In re Inspire Pharmaceuticals, Inc Securities Litigation, (M.D.N.C. 1:06-cv-00201). Co-counsel for the underwriters group in successful defense of 1933 and 1934 Act claims arising from the sale of a securities by start-up pharma company after the failure of the trials for its key drug
  • In re Swisher Hygiene, Inc. Securities & Derivative Litigation, W.D.N.C., 3:12-md-2384 & 3:14-cv-2387 (See, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 88697).  Represented Swisher Hygiene defending securities fraud class actions after company’s withdrawal of financial statements and disclosure recent statements could not be relied upon. After partial success on motion to dismiss the case was settled
  • Raul v. Burke, 2016 NCBC LEXIS 8 (January 28, 2016). Successfully defended Swisher Hygiene against state law governance claims brought challenging the sale of the company’s assets
  • Lentine v. FairPoint Communications, Inc., 3:17-cv 00051 (W.D.N.C. February 2017). Secured dismissal of securities fraud claims against client arising from the sale of the company
  • Sherman v. The Fresh Market, Inc., (M.D.N.C. 1:17-CV-00179). As lead counsel for The Fresh Market, Inc. and nine of its directors successfully defended securities-fraud class action arising from $1.36 billion go-private acquisition with Apollo Global Management. Plaintiff alleged that an insider colluded with Apollo to depress the sales price and that the defendants failed to disclose that scheme in in violation of Sections 14(d)(4), 14(e), and 20(a) of the Exchange Act
  • Contant v. Bank of America, et al. Case No. 1:17-cv-03139 (S.D.N.Y.); Allianz Global Investors GMBH, et al. v. Bank of America Corporation, et al., Case No. 1:18:cv-10364 (S.D.N.Y.); In Re Foreign Exchange Benchmark Antitrust Litigation, Case No. 1:13-cv-07789 (S.D.N.Y.). We are lead defense counsel for Royal Bank of Canada in the forex antitrust class and mass actions pending in the U.S. District Court for the S.D.N.Y.
  • In re Pike Corp. Shareholder Lit., 2015 NCBC LEXIS 94 (2015). Represented company and its board in consolidated shareholder class action lawsuits alleging securities fraud in a go-private transaction.  Following successful motions practice obtained favorable settlement of all claims
  • Corwin V. British American Tobacco PLC, 251 N.C. App. 45 (2016). Successfully defended the special committee of the board of directors against state law claims of breach of fiduciary duty in connection with BAT’s purchase of the majority stake in Reynolds Tobacco that it did not own, which were based in part on allegations BAT controlled Reynolds Tobacco and influenced its transaction decisioning
  • Beam, et al. v. Sunset Financial Services, Inc., et al., FINRA Case No. 17-01340 (Sept. 26, 2018 Award). Achieved dismissal of all claims asserted against national broker-dealer client in FINRA arbitration concerning purchase of millions of dollars of alternative investments
  • Whittington, et al. v. Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, et al., 2012-CV-01206 (N.C. Super. Ct.). Secured summary judgment in favor of our broker-dealer client in collective action stemming from one hundred million dollar check-kiting and Ponzi scheme and alleging failure to monitor, AML violations, and violations of the Bank Secrecy Act
  • Martin v. Banc of America Securities FINRA No. 08-00319; Martin v. Bank of America Corp., Case No. 2009-SOX-00002 (U.S. Dept. Labor).  Won a FINRA arbitration and Department of Labor proceeding defending a client against multi-million dollar Sarbanes-Oxley and state law claims brought by a terminated trading employee who alleged he was terminated for whistle-blowing
  • First Charter Bank, Trustee of Last Will and Testament of Joseph F. Cannon v. American Children's Home, 692 S. E. 2nd 457 N.C. App., (2010).  Successfully represented trustee in proceeding to determine final disposition of trust assets at expiration of the 99-year term of a charitable trust and to modify trustee compensation provision
  • C. Department of Revenue v. Kimberley Rice Kaestner 1992 Family Trust, 139 S.Ct. 22134 (June 21, 2019). Representing an out of state trust we successfully challenged the constitutionality of a state tax statute taxing the trust based upon a beneficiary’s residence in the state, prevailing before the U.S. Supreme Court
  • Wedderburn Corporation v. Jetcraft Corporation, et al., 2015 NCBC 101; 2015 NCBC LEXIS 105 (N.C. Bus. Court 2015). Obtained dismissal of nearly all claims regarding the plaintiff's allegations of breach of contract in the client's sale of $16 million aircraft to the plaintiff
  • Paul E. Enochs v. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, 17-CVS-3491 (NC Superior Court, Durham County, July 25, 2017). Obtained preliminary injunction restraining a health insurance company from removing a physician from network in contravention of network participation agreement

White Collar, Regulatory Defense & Investigations

  • Counsel for a large financial institution, including certain interviewed employees, in connection with investigations by DOJ and the SEC into the collapse of an international company. Former senior executives of the LBO company have been indicted
  • After the ICIJ’s Panama Papers disclosures, led a non-U.S. financial institution’s review and response to investigations globally, including a global internal review conducted in conjunction global accounting consultancies in Europe, Asia Pacific, North America, South America and the Caribbean
  • Counsel for an institution, including certain interviewed employees, in an investigation by DOJ into securities and accounting fraud at a large transportation company, which was a customer
  • Counsel for an institution, including certain interviewed employees, in an investigation by the U.S. State Department and a U.S. Attorney into possible immigration fraud by a vendor for the institution
  • Counsel for Merrill Lynch Commodities, Inc. in a recent DOJ settlement of spoofing in the precious metals market
  • Counsel for Eli Global LLC, Global Bankers Insurance, and certain affiliates in N. C. state and federal investigations of alleged bribery, false statements, and financial misconduct involving billions of dollars
  • Counsel for Bank of America in its negotiated resolution of OCC and Federal Reserve FX trading controls investigations
  • Counsel for an international financial institution responding to multiple subpoenas from the Office of the Special Counsel’s Russia investigation
  • Investigation of accounting fraud in a division of a multi-national public company industrial manufacture which facilitated the sale of that business division
  • Investigation at a major financial institution regarding trading in U.S. Treasuries
  • Investigation at a large financial institution regarding the use of unapproved communication channels in its investment banking division
  • Investigation at a financial services company regarding possible Sarbanes-Oxley violations
  • Investigation of a public company’s securities reporting and management procedures when the company determined unregistered shares had been sold to the public. Advised and assisted the client with SEC reporting of the events and the shareholder remediation planning and process
  • Investigation to respond to governmental inquiries relating to FCPA concerns of a U.S. client’s contracts, financing, and potential sales to customers in Hong Kong

Financial Regulatory Advice and Response

  • An expedited internal review of loans to be used in preparing responses to regulators’ inquiries regarding possible misconduct in connection with SBA loan origination and processing

Employment & Labor

  • Michael Shaughnessy v. Private Diagnostic Clinic, PLLC, et al., No. 1:18-cv-461 (MDNC November 19, 2018, July 10, 2020, July 23, 2020). Obtained dismissal of federal employment discrimination claims and summary judgment on state wrongful discharge and tortious interference claims
  • Margaret Lynch v. Private Diagnostic Clinic, PLLC, et al., No. 1:16-cv-526 (MDNC December 20, 2016). Obtained dismissal of employment discrimination claims against a client based on lack of subject matter jurisdiction
  • EEOC v. PBM Graphics, Inc., 877 F. Supp. 2d 334 (MDNC 2012). Obtained partial dismissal of EEOC “pattern and practice” class action discrimination claims
  • MJM Investigations v. Brian Sjostedt, 2010 WL 2814531 (N.C. App. 2010). Won appeal at the North Carolina Court of Appeals invalidating an overbroad non-compete clause that a company asserted in an attempt to restrain its former employee from working in a competitive field
  • Pattridge v.Parata Systems, LLC, (MD Fla. 2008). Successfully resolved FLSA collective action against client-employer
  • Dula v. Gold Peak Industries Ltd., (EDNC 2004). Obtained dismissal of a claim against a Hong Kong client on personal jurisdiction grounds. The motion required proving that the client was not a joint employer of the plaintiff
  • Estate of Shelia Williams-Moore v. Duke University Health System, Inc., et al., 335 F.Supp.2d 636 (MDNC 2004). Obtained summary judgment on a claim of race discrimination by a patient
  • Woolford v. Frontier Spinning Mills, Inc., 04-CVS-4030 (Forsyth County 2004). Obtained a dismissal of a claim under the Retaliatory Employment Discrimination Act by a former employee of a client in the textile industry

Environmental

  • Represented numerous buyers and sellers of environmentally impacted real estate. In particular, we have obtained brownfields agreements and associated tax incentives on behalf of developers redeveloping contaminated sites across the Carolinas, including high-density commercial sites in the downtown cores of Charlotte, Raleigh, Durham, and Greensboro, each valued between $50 million and more than $400 million. These projects have included redeveloping a former dry cleaner into a mixed-use development; redevelopment of a former landfill into a distillery in South Carolina; redevelopment of a 105-acre former pharmaceutical facility into a mixed-use commercial development in Research Triangle Park; two related multi-use development projects, and a large multi-family residential development, each in Charlotte’s South End
  • Represented municipal clients in litigation regarding the issuance of a landfill permit to expand an existing facility as well as litigation concerning water quality, water rights, and the relicensing of hydropower operations
  • Represented manufacturers and distributors across a broad range of industries on stormwater, wastewater, air emissions and hazardous waste permitting, compliance and enforcement matters, as well as managing environmental risk associated with legacy assets
  • Represented textile manufacturers in defense of Clean Water Act citizen suit in Georgia involving direct wastewater discharges to interstate waters, as well as a multi-media, multi-agency response to fish kill in a lake in the mountains of western North Carolina
  • Represented a public university in defense of Clean Air Act citizen suit relating to the university’s operation of a coal- and natural gas -fired steam cogeneration facility amid public opposition to the university’s use of coal
  • Represented lenders, renewable energy developers, and investors on environmental and permitting matters in connection with large-scale renewable energy project portfolios, including projects located in environmentally sensitive areas
  • Represented trustee of closed hazardous waste landfill on environmental regulatory compliance and enforcement matters


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