BakerHostetler Will Combine With IP Boutique: Business of Law
By Elizabeth Amon - Nov 25, 2013 12:00 AM ET
Baker & Hostetler LLP and intellectual property boutique Woodcock Washburn will combine, pending a partner vote in early December, the two firms said in a statement.
Woodcock Washburn LLP’s 68 lawyers will double BakerHostetler’s current IP practice to 140. BakerHostetler has more than 800 attorneys in 11 offices in the U.S. By combining with Woodcock Washburn, it gains a presence in Atlanta, Philadelphia and Seattle.
“Woodcock Washburn’s nationally known and highly regarded intellectual-property practice strengthens our IP position, particularly for clients in the technology sector,” BakerHostetler executive partner Steven Kestner said in a statement.“This is another significant step in our mission to help our clients grow and protect their businesses in today’s complex business and regulatory environment.”
“The combination of our two firms broadens the scope of services we can offer our clients,” Lucci said in a statement. “We’ll be a go-to law firm for technology companies of all types.”
IP Law Firm Rouse Joins Firms Opening Offices in Yangon, Myanmar
Intellectual property law firm Rouse opened an office in Myanmar, the most recent of several foreign firms to announce a Yangon office in the last few months.
The new office, the firm’s 16th, will offer clients filing and prosecution for trademarks services, patent designs and geographic indications, as well as broader portfolio management, commercial work and IP commercialization services such as technology transfer.
Fabrice Mattei, a Rouse partner and the Thailand country manager, who is also head of patents, will run the new office. He will be joined by Moe Mynn Thu, an IP attorney joining the firm from Myanmar Brewery Ltd.
“We have worked actively in the Myanmar market for several years, and believe the time is now right to establish a base in the country,” Luke Minford, Rouse’s chief executive officer, said in a statement. “We already manage the IP of over 50 clients in Myanmar, and this step will ensure we can continue to deliver the level of service we pride ourselves on at Rouse.”
Herzfeld & Rubin PC announced last month that it opened a law office in Yangon, Myanmar, in July, staffed by American and Myanmar attorneys. The office is a full-service firm and handles matters related to the emerging and frontier markets, it said.
Duane Morris LLP also recently opened an office in Myanmar, to advise clients on investment and matters including tax, licensing, regulations, market entry, reporting requirements and U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and U.K. Bribery Act issues.
Rouse is an intellectual-property services firm with a focus on the Asia and the Middle East markets and a niche U.K. IP practice. The firm has more than 600 people in 16 offices in 13 countries.
Wood Smith Opens in New York With Wilson Elser Team Hire
West Coast law firm Wood, Smith, Henning & Berman LLP is opening an office in New York, with the hire of trial attorney Michael W. Coffey, formerly with Wilson Elser Moskowitz and Dicker LLP. Coffey, who will be managing partner of the office, is joined by five other Wilson Elser lawyers including new partners Tracy J. Abatemarco and James P. Tyrie.
“As with all our offices, this expansion was driven by requests from the clients who needed experienced trial lawyers who can deliver results,” Daniel A. Berman, managing partner of WSHB, said in a statement. “We are pleased with the team we have assembled and are thrilled as we expand from a West Coast firm to one national in scope and coverage.”
Coffey has tried more than 100 cases to verdict, the firm said. He focuses on the defense of professional liability, general liability and casualty, and commercial litigation matters.
Abatemarco focuses her practice on lead paint, mold, and toxic-tort and construction litigation for clients including financial institutions and real estate owners and managers.
Tyrie focuses on the defense of premises security, toxic-tort, construction and general liability claims.
Wood Smith has 282 lawyers and staff in 14 U.S. offices.
Business Lawyer Robertson Joins Patton Boggs in New York
Robertson has experience with private equity, venture capital, hedge and other alternative investments matters. She also advises investors and portfolio companies on acquisitions, dispositions and mergers, and has experience representing foreign and domestic corporations and governments on industry and legal issues.
Patton Boggs last month announced the arrival of four attorneys also from Edwards Wildman with public finance and infrastructure experience in New York and Washington.
Patton Boggs has more than 450 lawyers and professionals in Washington, New York, New Jersey, Dallas, Denver and Anchorage and internationally in Abu Dhabi, Doha, Dubai and an affiliate office in Riyadh.
Labor & Employment Lawyer Jill Vorobiev Joins Dykema in Chicago
Vorobiev has experience in employment litigation and counseling on labor and employment issues. Her litigation experience includes discrimination claims, non-competes and trade secrets, wage and hour and class action litigation, the firm said. She also handles labor arbitrations and has represented corporate clients in federal and state courts and before many different administrative agencies.
“Jill is a well-rounded, strategic thinker with a sharp focus on labor and employment issues,” Michael Borders, office managing member of Dykema’s Chicago office, said in a statement.
Vorobiev also counsels and trains employers on federal and state labor and employment laws, civil rights laws and compliance matters.
Dykema has lawyers at 13 U.S. offices.
European Banks’ Legal Tab Tops $77 Billion as Probes Swell
Europe’s biggest banks, led by Lloyds Banking Group Plc (LLOY) and Deutsche Bank AG, have racked up more than $77 billion in legal costs since the financial crisis, five times their combined profit last year.
Since September 2008, the 18 banks with the highest litigation expenses paid at least $24.9 billion settling lawsuits and probes, set aside $31.5 billion to compensate U.K. clients improperly sold products including mortgage insurance and earmarked $20.9 billion for further penalties, data compiled by Bloomberg show. The sum equates to spending $42 million a day. The total may be higher as many settlements aren’t public.
European banks are meeting the cost of helping some clients launder money and avoid taxes while cheating others by not disclosing the risk of products designed to protect them from interest rate swings and manipulating markets for their own profit. The penalties come as regulators require firms to set aside more funds to strengthen finances and as executives look for ways to boost shareholder returns even amid lower revenue.
The six biggest U.S. banks, led by JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and Bank of America Corp., have allotted more than $100 billion to lawyers, litigation and settlements since the financial crisis, more than they’ve paid in dividends. Last month New York-based JPMorgan reported its first quarterly loss under Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon because of surging legal expenses. The bank has agreed to the final terms of a $13 billion settlement over its sales of mortgage-backed securities.
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Jefferson County’s Bankruptcy Left Few Winners as Debt Forgiven
The impact of Jefferson County’s bankruptcy will reverberate for decades in Alabama and in the $3.7 trillion U.S. municipal bond market.
Creditors, including JPMorgan Chase & Co., agreed to forgive $1.4 billion of the county’s $3 billion sewer bonds. Ratepayers, like Charles Hicks, a retired landscaper who lives on a fixed income in Birmingham, will see his sewer rate rise about 8 percent annually for the next four years and 3.5 percent thereafter, under a plan approved Nov. 21 by a federal judge.
Since filing the $4.2 billion case in November 2011, the county has spent more than $24 million on attorneys and other advisers. Most of the payments went to the county’s two main law firms.
Klee, Tuchin, Bogdanoff & Stern LLP in Los Angeles, which is led by Ken Klee, the lawyer who helped rewrite the U.S. Bankruptcy Code in the 1970s, collected $10.1 million in fees and was reimbursed about $204,000 for expenses. The second firm, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP, which has offices in Birmingham, collected $8.2 million in fees and was reimbursed about $294,000 for expenses.
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