The national securities litigation practice at Skadden is frequently recognized for handling some of the most challenging, high-stakes securities litigation matters — “bet-the-company” cases that demand a full range of skills, in and out of the courtroom. According to Chambers USA 2017, which ranked the firm in the top tier for securities litigation, Skadden “enjoys an extremely strong reputation in both securities litigation and regulation.” In 2017, for the seventh consecutive time, Skadden was named to the BTI Consulting Group’s list of top litigation law firms — The BTI Fearsome Five — and named as a Powerhouse for Securities and Finance Litigation in the BTI Litigation Outlook 2018. Skadden is the only firm named to both of these lists in every edition of the report.

Our attorneys have deep experience with often-overlapping internal investigations, derivative actions and investigations by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and other federal or state regulators. The outcome of these proceedings can be vital to a company’s future, and Skadden’s approach of assembling collaborative teams of advisers with deep and relevant experience across our worldwide platform and the full range of disciplines is key to our successful track record on behalf of clients.

Securities Litigation Highlights

We have acted as lead defense counsel in some of the most high-profile securities class actions, including representing Anadarko Petroleum Corporation, MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings, Inc., and News Corp. (now known as 21st Century Fox), among others. Most recently, we have represented or are currently representing clients in cutting-edge securities litigation, including Abercrombie & Fitch, Co., American Apparel, BlackBerry Limited, El Pollo Loco, Iconix Brand Group, Inc., Pfizer Inc., the former CEO of Porsche Automobil Holding, Sprint, The Walt Disney Company and all the major financial institutions.

Skadden has successfully represented clients in significant and precedent-setting cases in appellate courts and before the U.S. Supreme Court, including:

  • Merrill Lynch in a unanimous win in Merrill Lynch v. Dabit, and securing a grant of certiorari on behalf of UBS Financial Services Incorporated of Puerto Rico and UBS Trust Company of Puerto Rico to resolve a circuit court split over the standard of appellate review for dismissals of derivative suits pursuant to Rule 23.1
  • Merrill Lynch in securing two major victories before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. This includes Lentell v. Merrill Lynch, in which the Second Circuit adopted a standard for loss causation that has been cited hundreds of times; and Wilson v. Merrill Lynch, which was the first auction rate securities (ARS) class action arising from the market collapse to be decided by an appellate court.
  • Vivint Solar, Inc., several of its officers and directors, and The Blackstone Group in securing a significant Second Circuit decision in a case of first impression that created a circuit split on the standard for determining the disclosure of interim financial data in a prospectus. The court’s decision affirmed the dismissal with prejudice of a putative securities class action complaint stemming from Vivint Solar’s Oct. 1, 2014, IPO, rejecting the plaintiff’s argument that centered around the “extreme departure” disclosure standard set forth in the First Circuit’s ruling in Shaw v. Digital Equipment Corp., and instead, holding that law of the Second Circuit is the materiality test set forth in DeMaria v. Andersen, which we also successfully argued on behalf of the underwriters in 2003.