Despite recent questions involving nationwide class action settlements, they continue to be a favored mechanism for resolving consumer fraud and similar product litigation in a single proceeding. This program, led by Skadden attorneys Christopher Cox, Thomas Fox, and Kelsey Castleberry, will discuss the procedural ins and outs of consumer class actions and the exciting current issues surrounding them.Topics addressed will include:
Mr. Cox has significant experience in coordinating and managing all stages of pre-trial discovery in multijurisdictional litigation. He regularly advises clients regarding discovery strategies and negotiates with opposing counsel regarding the scope of discovery, including in the e-discovery context. Mr. Cox has implemented and overseen factual investigation and expert witness development programs and has extensive experience in preparing company and expert witnesses for deposition and trial. In connection with his practice, Mr. Cox has developed knowledge regarding a variety of medical and scientific disciplines and public health issues.
In addition to having been a member of several trial teams at Skadden, Mr. Cox also has experience as lead trial counsel. In 2010, acting as special assistant corporation counsel to the New York City Law Department, Mr. Cox tried more than 15 tort cases for the city of New York. Among other favorable outcomes he achieved on behalf of the city, Mr. Cox obtained a directed verdict in Ward v. The City of New York, which was affirmed on appeal by the Appellate Division, First Department (2011 NY Slip Op 08202).
Mr. Cox’s appellate work includes key contributions to successful briefing before the Fifth Circuit and a New York state appellate court on behalf of a major life insurer. He also has counseled clients regarding submissions to regulatory and legislative bodies and provided advice on product liability issues that arise in connection with corporate transactions. Mr. Cox devotes a portion of his practice to pro bono service.
Mr. Fox has helped formulate and implement nationwide trial strategies and has coordinated the defense of class actions and other complex litigations. He also has successfully represented a major pharmaceutical manufacturer in insurance recovery efforts in multiple arbitrations pursuant to Bermuda Form excess insurance policies in both London and New York. As part of a national trial team at Skadden, Mr. Fox successfully defended allegations of civil conspiracy in asbestos litigation in courts across the country, including several trials. As part of a national coordinating effort, Mr. Fox developed and implemented integrated defense and settlement strategies and successfully negotiated multiple settlements involving tens of thousands of claims below budget. Mr. Fox also participated in the trial defense of RICO and consumer protection claims involving a pharmaceutical product in the MDL court in Boston. In addition, Mr. Fox has participated in several arbitration hearings utilizing the Bermuda Form in both London and New York.
Throughout his career, Mr. Fox has identified, developed and prepared expert witnesses for use in a variety of cases, including cases involving fetal alcohol syndrome, asbestos, benzene, ethylene oxide, railroad and crane accidents, various pharmaceutical products, and insurance coverage arbitrations. Prior to Skadden, Mr. Fox was an in-house counsel at a major multinational oil company.
Mr. Fox also has been involved in the negotiation and implementation of numerous class action settlements. Further, Mr. Fox assisted the court-appointed mediator in the settlement of wrongful death and personal injury claims arising from the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001, brought by plaintiffs who opted out of the federally created Victims Compensation Fund. These efforts are reflected at In Re September 11 Litigation, 600 F. Supp.2d 549 (S.D.N.Y. 2009). Other decisions obtained on behalf of clients include Sanders v. Norfolk Southern Railway Co., 2010 WL 297813 (D.S.C.), aff’d 2010 WL 4386881 (4th Cir.).
Ben Halperin’s practice focuses on complex civil litigation, with an emphasis on consumer and product liability actions. He has represented numerous clients in litigation involving asbestos, consumer appliances, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, securities, sports, tobacco and other issues. Mr. Halperin has extensive experience in brief writing and motion practice on dispositive issues, class certification, Daubert challenges and discovery disputes. He also is a contributing author to Skadden’s Class Action Chronicle, a quarterly publication focused on developments in class action litigation.
Mr. Halperin dedicates a significant portion of his practice to pro bono work. He has authored amicus briefs successfully supporting the constitutionality of state assault weapons bans in federal appeals, successfully represented single mothers in child custody and support proceedings, won remand of an administrative denial of Social Security benefits and advised musicians and other artists on a range of issues.
Panel members all contributed