Set forth below are summaries of representative cases in which Mr. Karlinsky or Karlinsky LLC have played leading roles, usually with Mr. Karlinsky acting as lead trial and appellate counsel. For some of these matters, links to work product (briefs) and sometimes opinions of the relevant forum are included.
FINANCIAL SERVICES AND INVESTMENTS – BREACH OF CONTRACT AND BREACH OF FIDUCIARY DUTY
In the past three years, Mr. Karlinsky and his team represented a property and casualty insurance company in a suit against its former securities lending agent (a national bank) seeking $25 million in damages and asserting claims of breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty. The case was brought in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. The court denied (order) the defendant’s motion for summary judgment (brief), and the case settled shortly before trial.
TRUST LITIGATION – BREACH OF FIDUCIARY DUTY
After six years of intensive litigation, Mr. Karlinsky, leading a team of lawyers and experts that included corporate lawyers and accounting experts, concluded by settlement a complex trust action involving a New York trust that owned substantial New York City real estate. Mr. Karlinsky originally represented all trustees of the trust, as defendants, but ended the case representing a single trustee as a result of conflict issues. See Brief.
Mr. Karlinsky is representing an individual who is embroiled in a dispute with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) relating to a $40 million judgment the SEC obtained against a convicted fraudster.
INVESTMENTS – BREACH OF CONTRACT
Mr. Karlinsky represents the U.S investment vehicle of one of Europe’s wealthiest individuals in a series of business and commercial cases pending in New York County Supreme Court and alleging breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, breach of contract, and related claims. To view substantive court papers, please follow the links to:
COMMERCIAL LITIGATION AND BREACH OF CONTRACT
Over the last several years, Mr. Karlinsky represented a leader in the school improvement industry in contract and employment litigation pending in the U.S. District Courts for the District of Columbia and the Middle District of Louisiana. View the Louisiana complaint, D.C. complaint, Memo of Law in Support of Motion for Partial Summary Judgment, Opposition to Harris Motion for Summary Judgment, Memo of Law in Support of Motion for Summary Judgment, DC case, Memo of Law in Opposition to Defendant’s Motion for Summary Judgment DC matter, and Reply Memo of Law in Support of Motion for Summary Judgment DC matter
COMMODITIES – FINRA ARBITRATION
Mr. Karlinsky successfully defended a major U.S securities firm (acting as a futures commission merchant) in a proceeding before a NASD (now FINRA) arbitration panel in which claimant, a foreign national, sought damages of $7 million based on fraud claims in connection with futures trading on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. After 12 hearing days, the arbitration panel rendered an award for claimant, but assessed damages of less then 8%, the amount sought. The case involved expert proof concerning standards in the futures industry, as well as difficult regulatory issues.
TRUST LITIGATION – BREACH OF FIDUCIARY DUTY AND CONVERSION
After seven years of hotly contested litigation in the New York state courts over certain New York trusts, and the dismissal of most of plaintiffs’ claims, Mr. Karlinsky successfully concluded by settlement an action in which his client, the trustee of the trusts, was charged with breach of fiduciary duty and alleged to have stolen some $49 million from the trusts. The settlement entailed no payment or admission of liability on the part of his client, and culminated with the sale of the assets of the trust, amounting to over $70 million.
HEDGE FUND INDUSTRY – BREACH OF CONTRACT, TRADE SECRETS, EMPLOYMENT
In two related cases for a successful fixed-income hedge fund portfolio manager, Mr. Karlinsky tried a case before a Connecticut state court on the plaintiff’s side, seeking damages of over $2 million for breach of contract on the part of the hedge fund. In the related federal action, Mr. Karlinsky prosecuted claims for valuation of his client’s stock in the hedge fund manager, seeking damages of over $5 million. The case involved difficult valuation issues, as well as major issues relating to trade secrets and confidential information. To view substantive briefs, please follow the links:
EMPLOYMENT LITIGATION – AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT
Mr. Karlinsky and his team successfully developed, led the discovery of, supervised, and tried a complex employment litigation in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York arising under the Americans with Disabilities Act. Following a two-week trial, the jury awarded Mr. Karlinsky’s client almost $1 million in damages. Post-trial relief sought by defendants was denied, and an appeal was prosecuted to, and argued before, the United States of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Mr. Karlinsky’s team filed an attorneys fee application seeking over $1 million in fees for this complex four-year long litigation. The case, including the fee application, settled prior to the issuance of an opinion by the Second Circuit.
BUSINESS TORT – FALSE LIGHT INVASION OF PRIVACY AND BATTERY
Mr. Karlinsky and his team conducted the defense of a diversity action in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania on behalf of the National Rifle Association of America in a high-profile case that garnered national publicity and involved claims for false light publicity, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and assault and battery. The principal witnesses at the two-week jury trial included the former (Marion Hammer) and then-current (Charlton Heston) presidents of the NRA. After the jury returned a verdict in the amount of $4.45 million against the NRA, Mr. Karlinsky led his trial team in post-trial motions for judgment as a matter of law and for a new trial. In September 1999, the trial judge granted the motion for a new trial and vacated the jury’s verdict. The case settled on the eve of retrial for $450 000, an amount equivalent to the cost of a retrial and post-trial proceedings, funded substantially by the NRA’s insurance carrier.
BANKING – FRAUD, INTERFERENCE WITH CONTRACT, BREACH
Mr. Karlinsky conducted the successful defense of a case brought by a New York insurer against a foreign (Latin American) bank for fraud, breach of contract, interference with contract, and other claims. In this case, Mr. Karlinsky invoked a forum selection clause in one of a series of instruments in order to defeat claims made directly under other instruments in that series, and the district court dismissed the case for improper venue. On appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, the court affirmed, and a petition for rehearing en banc was subsequently denied. The Supreme Court of the United States denied certiorari.
TECHNOLOGY INDUSTRY – SECURITIES LITIGATION
Mr. Karlinsky successfully defended a private securities action under SEC Rule 10b-5 in which plaintiffs alleged that Mr. Karlinsky’s client, a public biotech company, and others were involved in the manipulation of its securities through a short-selling scheme. The district court dismissed the action on motion to dismiss. On a first appeal to the Second Circuit, that court affirmed the dismissal, and vacated and remanded for further findings to the district court on Mr. Karlinsky’s client’s cross-appeal for sanctions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act. After the district court again denied sanctions, the case returned twice (Second Circuit Briefs can be found at the following links: Guarary v. Winehouse Brief for Nu-Tech 2d Cir.4-10-00 and Guarary v. Winehouse Brief for Nu-Tech 2d Cir.2-15-02) more to the Second Circuit, that court ultimately issuing a groundbreaking and leading decision on the law of sanctions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Supreme Court twice denied certiorari on petitions filed by plaintiffs. At the end of litigation, after almost seven years, plaintiffs’ counsel was ordered to, and did, repay the entirety of defendants’ legal fees and expenses.
SECURITIES INDUSTRY – COMMERCIAL LITIGATION
Mr. Karlinsky successfully defended a “bet-your-company” breach of contract and fraud case on behalf of a publicly held broker-dealer in Central District of California. Plaintiffs here alleged that the defendant broker-dealer had contracted to purchase a block of stock for some $5 million. After vigorous motion practice and discovery, the district court dismissed the complaint on Mr. Karlinsky’s motion for summary judgment, holding that the signatory to the contract lacked appropriate authority. An appeal was prosecuted by plaintiffs to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which affirmed the summary judgment.
BUSINESS TORT AND CONSTITUTION
Mr. Karlinsky advised the Anti-Defamation League following an unsuccessful appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit of a judgment exceeding $10 million arising from claims for violation of the federal Wiretap Law and common law defamation. While unsuccessful in obtaining review in the Supreme Court of the United States, counsel were ultimately successful in wholly defeating a consequent application for attorneys fees in a mount exceeding $6 million. The Tenth Circuit later affirmed dismissal of the fee petition.