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Securities Litigation

The Miller Nash Graham & Dunn Securities Litigation team has successfully resolved all types of disputes that arise in the securities industry. We regularly represent investment banks, issuers, directors and officers, major wire houses, broker-dealers, registered investment advisers, and others. We have prevailed in defending claims filed by investors in state and federal court, including class actions, as well as in arbitration proceedings or enforcement actions brought before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority ("FINRA"). As a result, we have extensive experience with virtually every type of securities case, including claims brought under the 1933 and 1934 Securities Acts, as well as claims for fraud, nondisclosure, violation of state blue sky laws, breach of fiduciary duty, and cases involving merger and proxy disputes, insider trading, and corporate governance.

Our team also frequently handles disputes that arise among and between brokerage firms over the recruiting, hiring, or termination of employment of registered representatives. From temporary-restraining-order proceedings in federal court to raiding claims before FINRA, we are very familiar with the legal and practical issues surrounding the enforcement of noncompetition and nonsolicitation agreements, as well as common-law doctrines related to trade secrets and confidential information.

We are proud to have represented such clients as Merrill Lynch, Paine Webber and successor UBS Financial Services, CitiGroup and predecessor or affiliated entities such as Smith Barney, Shearson Lehman Brothers, E. F. Hutton, Black & Company, D. A. Davidson, Wedbush Morgan, Umpqua Investments, Raymond James, and many others.

The services of our team also extend beyond civil litigation. We are available to assist with internal compliance reviews and to represent broker-dealers and registered representatives in administrative investigations and enforcement proceedings. We also maintain a secure Internet online litigation tool that we call "LitTracker," which allows us to share information regarding our case experience, arbitrators, mediators, expert witnesses, and FINRA rules and awards.

Representative Experience

Represented broker-dealer against claims for violation of federal and state securities laws arising from respondent's securities lending business. Claimant sought damages of over $50 million plus attorney fees. After five days of hearings, panel granted summary award for respondent and awarded it $287,000 in attorney fees and costs.
This case was brought by an investor who engaged in "short-selling" stock. After a substantial share value drop, claimant alleged numerous claims, including that his loans of stock were investment contracts and thus constituted sales of securities in violation of state and federal securities laws. Claimant sought $52 million in damages, plus attorney fees. Four experts testified in support of claimant's theory, but the three-member arbitration panel dismissed claimant's claims in their entirety. The arbitrators also awarded UBS all its attorney fees incurred in defending the case.
Our client, a broker-dealer of investment securities and commodities, won a jury verdict after a six-day trial. The case was brought by a commodities trader alleging claims for breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, statutory violations, and negligence seeking compensatory and punitive damages for losses incurred in connection with trading contracts for future delivery of crude oil and natural gas. The plaintiff appealed, and the Oregon Court of Appeals split five votes to five. The Oregon Supreme Court unanimously affirmed in favor of our clients the broker-dealer and its agents.
Represented broker-dealer in appeal from pretrial dismissal of negligence claims. Oregon Supreme Court concluded that the broker-dealer did not have a special relationship with investor that permitted assertion of tort claims.
These consolidated actions involving multiple parties alleged securities fraud in connection with creation of a cellular telephone network in Puerto Rico. After several years of litigation, we obtained dismissal of our client, the law firm that created the entity and prepared the securities offering that was alleged to be unlawful.