Debra D. O’Gorman counsels clients in product liability and mass tort litigation, particularly in product liability actions involving over-the-counter and prescription drugs. She has extensive experience in expert and fact witness development, as well as expert and fact depositions and the preparation of defense witnesses for testimony.
Ms. O’Gorman was an active member of several trial teams in cases around the country alleging injury from Tylenol use, as well as the trial team that successfully challenged a Mexican company’s attempt to have its foreign bankruptcy plan approved in the United States. She has also played a key role in cases involving claims against sovereign debtors, as well as the defense of a foreign bank. Ms. O’Gorman has successfully managed document discovery in a broad range of cases and has helped to utilize technology to bring efficiencies to the process.
Ms. O’Gorman also participated in the briefing of a summary judgment motion, the success of which was hailed as one of the most significant products liability rulings of 2010. In that case, the court ruled that plaintiff’s experts failed to pass the Frye test and dismissed plaintiff’s claims.
Ms. O'Gorman was a member of the Dechert litigation team recognized as part of the Financial Times’ 2013 Top U.S. Innovative Law Firms for their “standout” work acting as lead counsel for an ad hoc group of creditors in connection with the highly contested cross-border restructuring of approximately $1.6 billion in defaulted senior notes issued by Mexico's largest glass manufacturer, Vitro S.A.B. de C.V. This precedent-setting case marked the first time that U.S. courts clarified the standards and requirements for global businesses that file for Chapter 15 bankruptcy. In 2014, she was also a member of the team “highly commended” by the Financial Times’ Top 40 North American Innovative Law Firms for their representation of Argentina’s two largest creditors – with combined claims for over US$3.5 billion – in multi-national litigation and judgment enforcement proceedings. The matter concluded in a victory before the Supreme Court of the United States.
Ms. O'Gorman presented the sole witness in a trial that resulted in an $85 million judgment on behalf of creditors of the Democratic Republic of Congo in a lawsuit to recover on defaulted sovereign debt and in the fall of 2014 she acted as the primary trial attorney for a creditor/objector in the City of Detroit bankruptcy proceeding.
Ms. O'Gorman is also actively committed to pro bono initiatives. She heads the firm’s involvement in a program to provide legal advice to litigants in family court throughout New York City and has received pro bono awards from several organizations.