One Liberty Square
Boston, MA 02109
Phone: (617) 542-8300
Fax: (617) 542-1194
One California Street
San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: (415) 433-3200
Fax: (415) 433-6382
PALM BEACH GARDENS
3507 Kyoto Gardens Drive
Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410
Phone: (561) 835-9400
Fax: (561) 835-0322
Berman DeValerio is honored to have been named by Benchmark Litigation as one of the Top 10 Plaintiffs’ Firms for 2017.
Founded in 1982, Berman DeValerio is a national law firm with offices in Massachusetts, California and Florida. The Firm has devoted its practice to complex litigation, primarily under the securities and antitrust laws, as well as related services requested by and provided to its institutional clients. The firm also has an active whistleblower practice, among others.
Berman DeValerio has more than 30 years of securities-litigation experience and has represented public pension funds and other institutional investors in that area since 1998. According to the most recent ISS Securities Class Action Services “Top 50 for 2015” report, Berman DeValerio was one of only six firms that recovered more than half-a-billion dollars for investors in 2015.
The firm has successfully prosecuted and recovered billions of dollars for defrauded investors in some of the most significant shareholder lawsuits of the last 20 years, having been appointed as lead or co-lead counsel in more than 100 actions. Recent successes include:
- California Public Employees’ Retirement System v. Moody’s Corp., No. CGC-09-490241 (California Superior Court San Francisco County) [$255 million in total settlements]
Landmark individual action on behalf of the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) against credit rating agencies (certain Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s entities) for negligent misrepresentations in connection with rating three structured investment vehicles.
- In re BP plc Sec. Litigation, No. 4:10-md-02185 (S.D. Tex.) [$175 million settlement (announced, subject to court approval)]
Hard-fought litigation on behalf of shareholders of BP American Depository Shares arising out of BP’s Deepwater Horizon explosion, which resulted in one of the worst oil spills in history.
- In re IndyMac Mortgage-Backed Sec. Litigation, No. 1:09-cv-04583 (LAK) (S.D.N.Y.) [$346 million settlement]
With the collapse of IndyMac Bank having occurred during the financial crisis, this long and complicated litigation against investment-bank underwriters and officers was one of the largest mortgage-backed-securities class action settlements to date.
- In re Fannie Mae 2008 Sec. Litigation, No. 08-cv-07831 (PAC) (S.D.N.Y.) [$170 million settlement]
Representing co-lead plaintiff Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management Board and the class it represented, this action resolved claims that Fannie Mae failed to disclose (a) growing exposure to high-risk mortgages as well as (b) problems with the company’s risk controls, both of which led to federal conservatorship in 2008.
Berman DeValerio’s dismissal rate for cases brought under the federal securities laws is less than half the overall dismissal rate for such cases (as reported by one authoritative study). The firm serves as monitoring, evaluation, and/or litigation counsel to nearly 100 institutional investors, which includes 10 statewide public employee retirement systems with more than $50 billion in assets.
Berman DeValerio’s antitrust practice also has a national reputation for prosecuting class actions that involve anticompetitive conduct and conspiracies to fix or maintain prices. Over the years, the firm has played a major role in the prosecution of numerous landmark antitrust cases and has been at the forefront of some of the largest antitrust settlements—recovering over a billion dollars for class members and changing business practices of defendant companies. The firm’s antitrust group is currently focused on multiple actions, such as:
- Laydon v. Mizuho Bank, Ltd., No. 1:12-cv-03419 (GBD) (S.D.N.Y.) & Sonterra Capital Master Fund, Ltd. v. UBS AG, No. 1:15-cv-05844 (GBD) (S.D.N.Y.)
Berman DeValerio is counsel for plaintiffs, representing two large public pension funds in actions alleging that bank traders and their affiliates colluded in violation of antitrust laws to manipulate the Euroyen TIBOR and Yen LIBOR rates—benchmark rates used to determine interest rates and to price Japanese Yen-based financial instruments.
- In re Lithium Ion Batteries Antitrust Litigation, No. 13-md-02420-YGR (N.D. Cal.)
Berman DeValerio is co-lead counsel for the proposed class of direct purchasers of lithium-ion rechargeable batteries in a class action alleging that defendant manufacturers participated in a conspiracy in violation of federal antitrust laws to fix the prices of lithium-ion rechargeable batteries (which are commonly used in devices such as notebook computers, cell phones, and digital cameras).
- Sullivan Barclays PLC, et al., No. 13-cv-02811 (PKC) (S.D.N.Y.)
Berman DeValerio represents a public pension fund in a class action that it joined as named plaintiff, which alleges that over a dozen major banks colluded in violation of the antitrust laws to manipulate the EURIBOR, a global reference rate used to benchmark and price over $200 trillion of financial products.
Berman DeValerio also has a whistleblower practice group that assists individuals wishing to expose fraud perpetrated against the federal government, states, and corporations, and to obtain the compensation and protections afforded by the False Claims Act, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Whistleblower Program, the Commodities Futures Trading Commission Whistleblower Program and the Internal Revenue Service Whistleblower Program. Berman DeValerio helps whistleblowers engage appropriate government entities to right wrongs—enforced either by those agencies or through separate litigation.
With offices in Boston, San Francisco and Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, Berman DeValerio is a nationally recognized firm with 14 partners focused on pursuing class-action litigation on behalf of individuals and institutions who have suffered financial harm due to violations of securities or antitrust laws. "The firm has solid roots in the securities and antitrust market," ventures a peer. "They are involved in many desirable cases." One former opponent jokes, "You know, after all the grief they've given me, you're making me stick up for these guys! But I have to, because from a plaintiff perspective they are absolute tops."
Arguably the firm's most visible and active litigator, San Francisco's Joseph Tabacco represents Aetna Life Insurance Company in an ongoing matter against the owners and/or operators and/or managers of ancillary medical facilities at which physicians perform outpatient surgeries. The client alleges that the defendants have implemented an illegal scheme through which they have been enriched by massive overpayments, the costs of which Aetna alleges are being borne by the health care system to the detriment of all patients with medical insurance. Tabacco also led a securities action alleging that the now-defunct Bear Stearns embarked on a business plan that left it extraordinarily vulnerable to volatility in the housing market by purchasing and originating an enormous number of unusually risky mortgages to securitize and sell and by maintaining billions of dollars of these assets on its books, and that the company then used these assets as collateral to purchase even larger quantities of debt and to finance the ballooning costs of its daily operations. The case resolved after the firm conducted four years of vigorously contested litigation, which included successfully defeating the defendants' motions to dismiss and securing an eventual settlement of $295 million.
Glen DeValerio in the firm's Boston office represents co-lead plaintiff Ohio Public Employees Retirement System in a case alleging that BP and two of its former executives violated federal securities laws by making false and misleading statements regarding the severity of the massive 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Specifically, plaintiffs allege that BP misrepresented that its best estimate of the oil spill flow rate was from 1,000 to 5,000 barrels of oil per day, when internal BP estimates showed substantially higher potential flow rates. Investors are pursuing claims to recover investment losses. The trial was due to commence in early 2016. DeValerio was also court-appointed co-lead counsel for Fannie Mae common stock shareholders and co-settlement class counsel for the common stock settlement class. Specifically, he represented the Massachusetts Pension Reserves Investment Management Board, which was appointed by the Court as lead co-plaintiff and settlement class representative for the common stock class along with the State-Boston Retirement Board. The action arose from Fannie Mae's failure to disclose its growing exposure to high-risk mortgages, which triggered federal conservatorship in 2008. After extensive and hard-fought document and deposition discovery, lead plaintiffs negotiated a proposed $170 million settlement in October 2014, which resolved all of their claims. The settlement was approved in March 2015.
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