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Thomas J. Hall

Co-Head of Disputes, New York

Thomas J. Hall

New York

T:+1 212 408 5487

Thomas Hall is Co-Head of Litigation, New York and a leading trial lawyer who has led over 40 trials to verdict and arbitrations to award. Mr. Hall has extensive experience in a broad range of complex commercial litigation matters, including environmental, banking, securities, intellectual property, energy, project finance, construction, real estate, insurance, corporate governance, partnership and contract disputes. He has handled all aspects of litigation and alternative dispute resolution throughout the United States and abroad.

Benchmark’s Guide to America’s Leading Litigators recognizes Mr. Hall as among the leading litigators in the country. The Legal 500 states that he "stands out in his approachability, frankness and sound judgment" and is "exceptionally user-friendly."

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  • Education

    1980 - J.D., Managing Editor, Fordham Law Review, Fordham University School of Law

    1977 - B.A., Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

  • Representative experience
    • Commercial Litigation: In the commercial litigation arena, Mr. Hall has handled high-profile cases involving merger and acquisition agreements, licensing arrangements, major commercial leases, shareholder and partner agreements, restrictive covenants, letters of credit, construction contracts and guarantees. He defeated a US$34 million arbitration claim brought against ORBCOMM, the owner and operator of a worldwide satellite system, by its Asian licensee for breach of contract and fraud, and obtained an award of legal fees for his client. He obtained a defense verdict in New York federal court for the insurance broker Aon, which was accused of failing to secure requested insurance coverage for a Caribbean oil refinery that thereafter sustained hurricane damage. On behalf of the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network ("MASN"), majority owned and controlled of the Baltimore Orioles, he recently was successful in obtaining judicial vacatur of an arbitration ruling of a Committee of Major League Baseball establishing the amounts of telecast rights fees MASN must pay to the Washington Nationals, on the ground that the award was the product of evident partiality.
    • Banking Litigation: In the creditors' rights area, he has recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for lenders on defaulted financings, and has successfully defended financial institutions against dozens of lender liability claims. He achieved a substantial settlement in litigation to recover on a US$75 million loan to LJM2, one of the Enron-related partnerships, which was managed by Andrew Fastow, Enron's CFO. He is currently representing the secured lenders in the TOUSA, Inc. bankruptcy, defending fraudulent conveyance claims involving a US$500 million financing.
    • Latin American Litigation: Working with the firm's Latin American Practice Group, he has worked extensively representing Latin American companies, including those in the airline, energy, oil and gas, mining, and financial service industries, in litigation and arbitration. He currently is representing YPF S.A., a major Argentinean oil and gas producer, in several disputes, including the defense of litigation brought by the State of New Jersey and Occidental Chemical Corporation involving claims of fraudulent conveyance and piercing the corporate veil.
    • Energy Litigation: He has litigated extensively in the energy and project finance areas and, on behalf of one power project developer, he achieved a mid-trial settlement of US$29 million, the largest settlement ever in a lawsuit against the State of New York. 
    • Corporate Governance: He has defended corporate officers and directors in a variety of lawsuits, including claims for securities fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and corporate waste, and has handled coverage disputes under directors' and officers' (D&O) insurance policies. He won a summary judgment for the directors of Integrated Health Services, Inc. on a US$90 million D&O policy claim. He defended Richard Scrushy, former CEO of HealthSouth Corporation, in shareholder litigation seeking disgorgement of bonuses following discovery of a massive accounting fraud. He recently represented GLG Partners, Inc. in defending shareholder derivative litigation in Delaware and New York arising from its US$1.6 billion Merger Agreement with Man Group.
    • Environmental Litigation: Mr. Hall is representing YPF, the major Argentinean oil and gas producer, in an action brought by the State of New Jersey and Occidental Chemical Corporation in connection with one of the United States' largest environmental litigations. The multi-billion dollar claims, which stem from allegations relating to the pollution of the Passaic River in Newark, New Jersey, also involve issues of fraudulent conveyance and piercing the corporate veil.  Following a favorable settlement with the State, the firm achieved dismissal of seven of the eleven cross-claims brought against YPF by co-defendant Occidental Chemical Corp. Mr. Hall is also currently representing Johnson Controls, a Fortune 100 leader in building efficiency services and solutions, in defending them against federal and state lawsuits alleging that a former industrial site polluted a neighborhood in Goshen, Indiana
    • Intellectual Property: Mr. Hall has tried several intellectual property cases to verdict, including trademark cases in the fashion industry. In the patent area, he has partnered with the firm's patent litigators to field formidable jury trial teams. He prevailed at trial in New York federal court in obtaining a determination for the worldwide owner of the Gloria Vanderbilt trademarks that the GLO trademarks were associated with the Gloria Vanderbilt trademarks for purposes of a royalty agreement.
    • International Asset Recovery: In the international asset arena, Mr. Hall has handled a number of issues and cases for clients, including in the mid-1990s, when he represented the State of Qatar in litigation seeking the recovery of a portion of the billions of dollars in state funds allegedly misappropriated by its deposed former Emir.
  • Admissions
    • New Jersey State Bar License
    • New York State Bar License
  • Rankings and recognitions
  • Publications

    Mr. Hall is a regular columnist for the New York Law Journal on commercial litigation issues. His publications include the following:

    • "Defenses of impossibility of performance and frustration of purpose," New York Law Journal, October 19, 2017
    • "Attorney Fee Awards in Shareholder Derivative Actions," New York Law Journal, August 17, 2017
    • "Discovery Proportionality Takes Hold in the United States," International Litigation News, May 2017
    • "Commercial Division Update: Personal Jurisdiction Based on Digital Presence," New York Law Journal, April 20, 2017
    • "Commercial Division Update: Continuing Breach and Statutes of Limitation," New York Law Journal, February 17, 2017
    • Contributing author, Business and Commercial Litigation in Federal Courts, Fourth Edition (Robert L. Haig ed.) Thompson Reuters, 2016
    • "Commercial Division Update: Application of Forum Selection Clauses to Non-Parties," New York Law Journal, December 19, 2016
    • "Commercial Division Update: Sanctions for the Spoliation of Electronically Stored Information," New York Law Journal, October 21, 2016
    • "Commercial Division Update: Pushback Against Expanding Use of Non-Competes," New York Law Journal, August 19, 2016
    • "Commercial Division Update: Conditions Precedent and the Need for Unambiguous Terms," New York Law Journal, June 17, 2016
    • "Commercial Division Update: Fraud Claims Arising From Contract Negotiations," New York Law Journal, April 15, 2016
    • "Commercial Division Update: Applying Section 487 to Attorney Deceit Outside of New York Courts," New York Law Journal, February 19, 2016
    • Contributing author, Commercial Litigation in New York State Courts, Fourth Edition (Robert L. Haig ed.) Thompson Reuters, 2015
    • "Commercial Division Update: Applying the Doctrine of Incorporation by Estoppel," New York Law Journal, December 18, 2015
    • "Commercial Division Update: Pleading Breaches of Contract and Good Faith and Fair Dealing in Tandem," New York Law Journal, October 16, 2015
    • "Commercial Division Update: Shareholders Claims: Direct or Derivative?" New York Law Journal, August 21, 2015
    • "Commercial Division Update: 'At Issue' Waiver of Attorney-Client Privilege," New York Law Journal, June 19, 2015
    • "W(h)ither Discovery?," Dispute Resolution International, May 2015
    • "Commercial Division Update: Binding Contracts Despite Continuing Negotiations," New York Law Journal, April 17, 2015
    • "Commercial Division Update: Merger Clauses and Parol Evidence Rule," New York Law Journal, February 21, 2015
    • "Commercial Division Update: General Jurisdiction In New York After Daimler," New York Law Journal, October 17, 2014
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Wrongful Act Requirement For Piercing the Corporate Veil," New York Law Journal, August 15, 2014
    • "Commercial Division Update: Interpreting Conflicting Contractual Provisions," New York Law Journal, June 20, 2014
    • "Using Section 1782 to Reach Foreign Documents of US Companies," International Litigation News, May 2014
    • "Varied Approaches to Determining Third-Party Beneficiary Status," New York Law Journal, April 18, 2014
    • "Commercial Division Update: Criteria for Provisional Remedies In Aid of Arbitration," New York Law Journal, February 21, 2014
    • "CDO-Squared Fraud Suit Fails as Plaintiffs Cannot Prove Loss Causation," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, January 2014
    • "Second Circuit Upholds SLUSA Preclusion of State Law Claims Against Madoff Banks," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, January 2014
    • "New York Appellate Division Advances Terrorist Victims’ Suit Against Chinese Bank," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, January 2014
    • "Pleading Claims for Aiding And Abetting a Breach of Fiduciary Duty," New York Law Journal, December 20, 2013
    • "Commercial Division Update: Viability of Unjust Enrichment Claims Arising From Unenforceable Contracts," New York Law Journal, October 18, 2013
    • "United States Courts Honour the British Virgin Island's Limits on Shareholder Derivative Actions," International Litigation News, September 2013
    • "Commercial Division Update: Extent of Martin Act Preemption Of Common Law Claims for Fraud," New York Law Journal, August 16, 2013
    • "New Theories Advanced to Recover for Libor Manipulation," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, July 2013
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Threatened Destruction Of a Business as Irreparable Harm," New York Law Journal, June 28, 2013
    • "Debt Restructuring Cases Against Sovereigns and the U.S. Foreign Immunities Act," Sovereign Debt and Debt Restructuring: Legal, Financial and Regulatory Aspects, First Edition (Eugenio Bruno ed.), Global Law and Business, April 2013
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Enforceability of Choice of Law Provisions," New York Law Journal, April 13, 2013
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Economic Interest Defense To Tortious Interference Claims," New York Law Journal, February 15, 2013
    • "Commercial Division Update: Pleading and Proving Contract Reformation Claims," New York Law Journal, December 20, 2012
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Narrow Application Of The Champerty Doctrine," New York Law Journal, October 19, 2012
    • "Managers of Structured Investment Vehicle Owe No Fiduciary Duty to Noteholders," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, October 2012
    • "Madoff Trustee’s Racketeering Claims Against Unicredit Are Dismissed," Pratt's Journal of Bankruptcy Law, September 2012
    • "Sophisticated Investor’s Duty to Investigate Bars Fraud Claim Over Credit Default Swap Losses," The Banking Law Journal, September 2012
    • "Commercial Division Update: When an Acknowledgement of Debt Renews the Statute of Limitations," New York Law Journal, August 17, 2012
    • "Commercial Division Update: Divergent Views of Service of Process Under the Hague Convention," New York Law Journal, June 15, 2012
    • "Good Faith and Lenders' Exercise of Contractual 'Sole Discretion'," The Banking Law Journal, June 2012
    • "Feeder Fund Investors Are Not Madoff 'Customers' Under SIPA," Pratt's Journal of Bankruptcy Law, May/June 2012
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Heavy Burden of Proving Economic Duress," New York Law Journal, April 20, 2012
    • "Commercial Division Update: Determining the Validity of Liquidated Damages Provisions," New York Law Journal, February 17, 2012
    • "Commercial Division Update: Limits on the Exercise Of ‘Sole and Absolute’ Discretion," New York Law Journal, December 16, 2011
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Frustration of Purpose Doctrine Is Alive and Well," New York Law Journal, October 21, 2011
    • "When Does a Lien Attach to an Anticipated Tax Refund?: Uncertainty Lingers in Light of TOUSA," Journal of Taxation Vol. 25, No. 1, September/October 2011
    • "Madoff Trustee has no Standing to Bring Common Law Claims on Behalf of Madoff Customers," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, September 2011
    • "Public Side/Private Side Wall Helps Defeat Breach of Loyalty Claim," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, September 2011
    • "Fraudulent Conveyances and The Bankruptcy Code's Black Box: How Can Lenders Establish "Value" Under Section 548?," The Banking Law Journal, September 2011
    • "Commercial Division Update: Direct Interest and Impact: Key Limitations on Notice of Pendency," New York Law Journal, August 19, 2011
    • "Court Dismisses Madoff Investors’ Suit Over SEC’s Failure to Detect Ponzi Scheme," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, June 2011
    • "Commercial Division Update: Standing to Bring Claims Related to Loan Assignments," New York Law Journal, June 17, 2011
    • "US Sues Deutsche Bank AG Over Toxic Mortgages," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, June 2011
    • "Pennsylvania District Court Taxes E-Discovery Costs Against Losing Party," Client Alert, May 25, 2011
    • "Commercial Division Update: Limitations on Chief Administrative Judge’s Rule-Making Authority," New York Law Journal, April 15, 2011
    • "Court Refuses to Modify $45 Billion Sale of Lehman Assets to Barclays," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, April 2011
    • "Lender’s Federal Foreclosure Action Stayed in Deference to Borrower’s State Declaratory Judgment Action," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, April 2011
    • "TOUSA: $300 Million Revolving Loan Facility Avoids Fraudulent Conveyance Attack," Client Alert, March 8, 2011
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Use of Statistical Sampling as Evidence," New York Law Journal, February 18, 2011
    • "TOUSA: Indirect Benefits and Impossible Burdens – District Court "Quashes” Bankruptcy Court Decision," Client Alert, February 15, 2011
    • "Commercial Division Update: Critical Distinctions Between Waiver and Estoppel," New York Law Journal, December 17, 2010
    • "Mortgage Investors’ Class Action Suit Dismissed for Not Complying with Pooling and Service Agreement," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, December 2010
    • "Commercial Division Update: Oral Joint Venture Agreements and the Statute of Frauds," New York Law Journal, October 15, 2010
    • "Originators and Intended Beneficiaries Have No Attachable Interest in Midstream Electronic Fund Transfers," Financial Services Litigation Newswire, September 2010
    • "Commercial Division Update: Extending Indemnification Clauses To Claims Between Contracting Parties," New York Law Journal, August 20, 2010
    • "Enforcing Foreign Judgments in the U.S.: New Opportunities in New York," NYSBA New York International Chapter News, (Summer 2010) p. 5
    • "Commercial Division Update: Exceptions to the Enforceability Of Contractual Disclaimers of Reliance," New York Law Journal, June 18, 2010
    • Co-author, "Contracts Are Binding—In Good Times, and Bad? Contractual Impossibility, Material Adverse Change Clauses and Adequate Assurances During Economic Crisis," Uniform Commercial Code Law Journal, Vol. 42, No. 3, June 2010
    • "Chapter 52: Court-Awarded Attorney's Fees," Commercial Litigation in New York State Courts, Third Edition (Robert L. Haig ed.), West & NYCLA, 2010
    • "Wells Fargo Sanctioned for Failing to Mediate in Good Faith," Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, May 2010
    • "Commercial Division Update: Piercing the Corporate Veil Claims and Discovery," New York Law Journal, April 16, 2010
    • "Commercial Division Update: The Hurdle to Pleading Fiduciary Duty Claims in Arm’s Length Relations," New York Law Journal, February 19, 2010
    • "Financial Services Litigation NewsWire," February 2010
    • "Commercial Division Update: Deciding Enforceability of Jury Waivers In Disputed Contracts," New York Law Journal, December 18, 2009
    • Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, December 2009
    • "Sovereign Debt – Judicial Cases in the United States," Global Financial Crisis: Navigating and Understanding the Legal and Regulatory Aspects, October 30, 2009
    • "Commercial Division Update: Judicial Flexibility in Enforcing Restrictive Covenants in Employment," New York Law Journal, October 29, 2009
    • "Commercial Division Update: Filing Commercial Documents Under Seal," New York Law Journal, August 20, 2009
    • Financial Services Litigation NewsWire, July 2009
    • "Commercial Division Update: Use of Electronically Stored Information in Litigation," New York Law Journal, June 30, 2009
    • Commercial Litigation in New York State Courts, (contributing author), Second Edition, West & NYCLA, 2005 and pocket parts 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009
    • Business and Commercial Litigation in Federal Courts, (contributing author), Second Edition, West & ABA, 2005 and pocket parts 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009
    • "Revolving Credits as Fraudulent Conveyances: Is Rubin v. Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company Still Good Law?," The Banking Law Journal, April 2009
    • "Commercial Division Update: Issues Over Summary Judgment in Lieu Of Complaint Provide Litigation Fodder," New York Law Journal, February 26, 2009
    • Banking Litigation NewsWire, February 2009
    • "Financial Meltdown Triggers Litigation Wave," New York Law Journal, January 5, 2009
    • Banking Litigation NewsWire, November 2008
    • "Commercial Division Update: TRO Applications When the Courthouse is Closed," New York Law Journal, October 30, 2008
    • The Gavel - Commercial Litigation NewsWire, October 2008
    • "Commercial Division Update: Judicial Estoppel Use Freer as Policy Directives Change?," New York Law Journal, August 21, 2008
    • "Commercial Division Update: When Tort Claims Duplicate Contract Claims," New York Law Journal, June 30, 2008
    • "The Public Policy Exception to the Enforceability of Damage Waiver Clauses," The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel, May 2008
    • "States Lack Enforcement and Investigative Authority Over National Banks," The Banking Law Journal, March 2008
    • "Commercial Division Update: After 'Stoneridge': Securities Liability Scheme," New York Law Journal, February 29, 2008
    • "Commonality Requirement for Class-Action Certification," New York Law Journal, December 3, 2007
    • The Gavel - Commercial Litigation NewsWire, June 2007
    • "The Rights of Individual Lenders in Multi-Lender Loans to Enforce Remedies," The Banking Law Journal, May 2007
    • "Defenses to Claims by Bankruptcy Trustees Against Lenders: The In Pari Delicto Defense and the Wagoner Rule," The Banking Law Journal, January 2006
    • "New York's High Court Finds Lead Underwriter Can Have Fiduciary Duty to Issuer," Securities Litigation and Regulatory Enforcement NewsWire, October 2005
    • "The Liability of Limited Partners for the Defaulted Loans of Their Limited Partnerships," The Banking Law Journal, July 2005
    • "In No Uncertain Terms: The Importance of Defining the Duties of Lead Lenders in Multi-Lender Transactions," Banking Law Journal, May 2004
    • "Lender Held Liable For Construction Defects," Project Finance NewsWire, December 2001
    • "The Applicability of the Doctrine of Adequate Assurances to Real Estate Contracts," Real Estate Finance Journal, April 2001
    • "Statute of Limitations on Insurance 'Malpractice'," New York Law Journal, February 28, 2001
    • "Choice of Law: Beware Foreign Illegality," New York Law Journal, January 11, 2001
    • "Circuit Court Reaffirms Need to Determine Validity of Agreement to Arbitrate Before Arbitration Will Be Ordered," Mealey's International Arbitration Report, December 2000
    • "Privilege and the Errant E-Mail," Journal of Proprietary Rights, April 2000
    • "New York High Court Limits -- But Does Not Eliminate -- Creditors' Rights to Prejudgment Freeze of Debtors' Assets," The Banking Law Journal, January 2000
  • Speaking engagements
    • "Duties, Risks and Liability: Selling Financial Products," IBA Annual Conference, Sydney, Australia, October 12, 2017
    • "Top Ten Things You Need to Know About New York Contract Law," New York, NY, May 30, 2014
    • "Discovery Around the World: Comparative Approaches, Strategic Choices," International Bar Association Litigation Committee Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada, May 15, 2014
    • Stafford CLE Webinar: Fraudulent Conveyance Exposure for Intercorporate Guaranties, Integrated Transactions and Designated-Use Loans, April 16, 2014
    • "Post Stern v. Marshall: Navigating Uncertainties in Bankruptcy Claims Litigation," Stafford CLE Webinar, New York, NY, November 26, 2013
    • "Advice From More Experts: More Successful Strategies for Winning Commercial Cases in New York State Courts," New York County Lawyers' Association CLE program, New York, NY, June 11, 2013
    • "Shareholder Tactics and Remedies," International Bar Association Litigation Committee's Annual Conference, Istanbul, Turkey, April 25, 2013
    • "Litigation Lessons for Securities Lawyers," International Bar Association Annual Conference, Dublin, Ireland, October 3, 2012
    • "Stern v. Marshall: One Year Later - Navigation the Impact of the Ruling on Fraudulent Transfer, Preference and Other Bankruptcy Litigation," Strafford CLE Webinar, New York, NY, September 13, 2012
    • "Lessons for Lenders in Financing Transactions With Distressed Companies," Strafford CLE Webinar: Responding to TOUSA III, New York, NY, July 11, 2012
    • "Defending Against Attacks on Loans in Workouts, Defaults and Bankruptcy," Lender Liability: Evaluating, Minimizing and Defending Claims, New York, NY, March 30, 2012
    • "Navigating the Broad Implications for Fraudulent Transfer, Preference and Other Claims Litigation," Bankruptcy Litigation: Far-Reaching Impact of Stern v. Marshall Encore Webinar, New York, NY, December 8, 2011
    • "Lender Liability: Evaluating, Minimizing and Defending Claims: Defending Against Attacks on Loans in Workouts, Defaults and Bankruptcy," Strafford CLE Webinar, New York, NY, December 1, 2011
    • "Navigating the Broad Implications for Fraudulent Transfer, Preference and Other Claims Litigation," Bankruptcy Litigation: Far-Reaching Impact of Stern v. Marshall Webinar, New York, NY, October 13, 2011
    • "Fraudulent Conveyance Actions: TOUSA Revisited," Strafford CLE Webinar, New York, NY, May 3, 2011
    • "The TOUSA Decisions - Efficacy of Saving Clauses, Post-Insolvency Amendments & More," ExecSense Webinar, New York, NY, April 20, 2011
    • "Legal and Financial Issues Relating to In re TOUSA," Turnaround Management Association (TMA) NY's 14th Annual April Fools Educational Workshop, New York, NY, March 30, 2011
    • "Fraudulent Conveyances: More Than Just a Theoretical Risk in Structuring Loans and Guarantees," Emory Bankruptcy Developments Journal Symposium, Atlanta, GA, March 3, 2011
    • "Lender Liability: Evaluating, Minimizing and Defending Claims Seminar," Strafford CLE Webinar, New York, NY, December 21, 2010
    • "Sovereign Debt Litigation: Lessons from the Front Line," American Bar Association International Law Section Fall Meeting, Miami, Florida, October 30, 2009
    • "Claims Against Directors: Is D&O Insurance Enough Protection in the Context of the Financial Storm?" International Bar Association Annual Meeting, Madrid, Spain, October 7, 2009
    • "The 'Ins' and 'Outs' of Contractual Performance in Today's Economy," New York, New York, May 19, 2009
    • Interview, Bloomberg Radio, October 2, 2008
    • Interview, Bloomberg Radio, June 17, 2007
    • "The Impact of Sarbanes-Oxley on Shareholder Suits Against Directors," Interview, BBC World and News 24, July 29, 2003
  • Memberships and activities
    • Member, New York State Bar Association (Litigation and International Committees)
    • Member, Committee on Civil Practice Law and Rules)
    • Member, American Bar Association (Commercial and Banking Litigation Committee, International Litigation Committee; International Law Section)
    • Member, International Bar Association (Litigation Section)
    • Member, Federal Bar Council
    • Member, The Real Estate Board of New York, Inc.
    • Judge, National Moot Court Competition
    • Board of Trustees, Somos Familia Program, Inc., a not for profit corporation providing charitable services in Mexico and elsewhere