Notable Representations, Key Contacts
- Our Cross-Practice Capabilities: Drawing on the talents of lawyers around the world in our Restructuring, Public Company Advisory Group, White Collar Defense, Regulatory and Investigations, Privacy & Cybersecurity, and Product Liability & Mass Torts practices, among others, we offer our clients the "one-stop" service they need to efficiently mobilize in response to a crisis situation.
- Seamless Coordination of Parallel Litigation and Regulatory Investigations: We regularly manage and coordinate all aspects of legal proceedings arising out of crisis situations, including wide-ranging, multi-regulator investigations, multi-jurisdictional litigation, and sensitive internal reviews and investigations, often simultaneously.
- Our Experience Representing Major Companies in First-of-their-Kind Crises: We have occupied center stage during some of the highest profile crises over the last several decades, navigating clients from all over the world through complex regulatory and governmental investigations, internal investigations, restructurings, and attendant civil litigation. Recently, this has included, among many others:
- Numerous data breach incidents
- Sensitive allegations of workplace misconduct
- The 2015 Clean Air Act/Emissions scandal
- The 2015 Theranos Labs blood testing scandal
- The 2013 Lac Mégantic rail disaster in Canada
- The 2011 Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan
- The 2010 Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill
- The 2008 Financial Crisis
- The Cleanup Efforts Following the 2001 World Trade Center Terrorist Attacks
- The 1993 World Trade Center Terrorist Bombing
- Expert Management of Media Relations and Strategic Communications: Our attorneys have extensive experience coordinating media relations and strategic communications in the aftermath of large-scale crises. We regularly counsel on the legal implications of using public relations firms and managing communication with the media in the wake of a crisis. We also work with our clients to create a culture of brand management with respect to social media and all other forms of corporate communication, with the goal of preventing future crises.
Weil has represented legacy Willis (pre-dating its 2016 “merger of equals” with Towers Watson) in connection with approximately 15 securities class and individual actions arising out of the heavily publicized, $8 billion Ponzi scheme orchestrated by R. Allen Stanford and his Houston-based Stanford Financial Group. The complaints in these actions, originally filed in various state and federal courts across the country and centralized in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas by the Judicial Panel on Multi-District Litigation, generally allege that Willis and other defendants aided Stanford’s fraud.
In August 2017, following motion practice, limited discovery, and appellate proceedings before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court, a Texas federal judge approved a settlement by Willis that favorably resolved the litigation. In 2019, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the settlement.
Weil served as lead trial counsel for Johnson & Johnson in numerous components of the mass tort talc litigation in New Jersey state court. After a four-week trial, Weil secured a complete defense jury verdict in October 2018. The plaintiff alleged that J&J’s baby powder contains asbestos and causes cancer. This lawsuit is one of many similar cases currently pending in courts around the United States, in which plaintiffs allege that the use of talcum powder caused lung cancer or ovarian cancer, but this is the first defense verdict for J&J in a talc case in New Jersey courts. The American Lawyer awarded Weil lead trial partner Diane Sullivan “Litigator of the Week” honors for securing the verdict. Law360 also highlighted the win as a landmark victory of 2018. CVN showcased the win as the most impressive defense verdict of the year.
Weil subsequently served as co-lead trial counsel for Johnson & Johnson in a similar case in New Jersey state court alleging that exposure to asbestos in J&J’s baby powder contributed to him developing cancer. Following four weeks of trial, in March 2019, the jury returned a unanimous, 6-0 verdict after deliberating for less than 25 minutes. As a result of the victory, Weil was named a “Legal Lion” by Law360.
Following closely on the heels of this victory, in May 2019 Weil served as lead trial counsel in a separate lawsuit in the mass tort talc litigation in South Carolina state court alleging that exposure to asbestos in J&J’s baby powder contributed to the plaintiff developing a rare form of cancer. Following one week of trial, the jury returned a unanimous, 12-0 verdict in favor of J&J on every question.
An undisputed legal services powerhouse...”
Benchmark Litigation 2018
One source notes: “What Weil does very, very well is that they partner with the client and are fully engaged in both strategy planning and providing practical solutions.”
Chambers USA 2018