Complex Litigation

  • 2016 Best Lawyers Best Law Firms - Commercial Litigation
  • 2015 Best Lawyers Best Law Firms - Commercial Litigation

Reed Smith’s Complex Litigation Group (CLG) provides comprehensive solutions for clients facing litigation that is challenging and frequently threatens their brand and ability to be competitive. This multi-disciplinary litigation group has a wealth of experience handling engagements of all sizes, from generalized commercial disputes to “bet-the-company” litigation. From trials and arbitrations to mediations and settlements, members of our group advise leading multi-national corporations on developing and executing litigation and strategic resolution options in some of the most complex class actions, commercial litigations and mass torts in federal and state courts.

The CLG comprises more than 280 attorneys in 14 offices across the United States, and has a truly national footprint. Our attorneys are either admitted to practice or have experience in all 50 states, and have successfully analyzed and tackled some of the most difficult, high-profile issues in the litigation arena over the past several decades. Furthermore, our attorneys understand the industries where our clients conduct their business, and stay focused on trends and developments in those areas so that they can be proactive in preventing or minimizing potential liability or exposure in the future. Our lawyers excel at designing and providing pragmatic legal, trial and resolution options – regardless of the phase of litigation in which our clients are involved. To that end, each litigation that we manage receives a tailored plan for efficient case management, financial control and ultimate resolution.

CLG Teams

  • Business & Corporate Disputes – works to identify how commercial disputes affect a business and designs a strategy aimed not just at success in the courtroom, but also in the boardroom. From aggressive early pre-litigation resolutions, to preliminary injunction hearings and temporary restraining orders, to full-blown federal jury trials, our team is equipped to efficiently handle the most complicated business disputes, whether brought by customers or competitors or private or public entities.
  • Class Action & Multidistrict Litigation – focuses on the coordination, organization and defense of class action lawsuits and multi-district proceedings in different jurisdictions where overlapping issues are raised.
  • Complex Litigation Group Strategy – provides national coordination and resolution solutions to clients facing large, complex cases across the country.
  • Managed Care Litigation – advises on the full range of managed care disputes, including benefit coverage issues, reimbursement issues, heath plan liability laws, external reviews, and health insurance exchanges. The team also advises on state regulations and insurance administrative processes and those arising under federal health programs, including Medicare, Medicaid, FEHBP, and TRICARE, as well as Federal False Claims Act, Anti-Kickback, and Stark issues.
  • Mass & Toxic Torts – Reed Smith has been a leader in the defense of mass and toxic tort liabilities for more than 40 years, and has a wealth of experience defending manufacturers across the nation in individual and consolidated cases.
  • Pharma & Device Commercial Litigation – represents clients in all facets of litigation for all types of pharmaceuticals, as well as devices, including contraceptives and hormone therapies, surgical mesh, diabetes medications, defibrillators, antidepressants, orthopedic implants, diet drugs, vaccines, over-the-counter medicines, heart valves, bone screws, latex gloves, biologics, and many others. 
  • Portfolio Case Management – centralizes all of a client’s defense-related needs to a dedicated team of attorneys that have in-depth knowledge of the client’s industry, culture and operations.
  • Product Liability – We are a “go-to” firm in the United States for product liability defense, and have a nationally recognized practice that is consistently named “department” or “firm” of the year by trade publications like the American Lawyer and Legal 500.
  • Real Estate & Construction – We are among a truly select group of international law firms that have highly qualified real estate lawyers who are particularly well-established in their industries and jurisdictions. Our success in real estate is a result of our knowledge and appreciation of local laws, customs and practices, combined with our global perspective, advanced cross-border skills and experience. We have the ability to add real value, expedite transactions, and minimize conflict, risk and frustration for clients because we understand their commercial objectives and requirements, and can provide the right resources, regardless of location or size of client project. In addition, our construction and engineering lawyers are true authorities. Clients select us as a result of our legal experience in, and our in-depth knowledge of, the construction and engineering industries.
  • Retail, Franchise & Distribution – works with clients – multi-national conglomerates, franchisors, local boutiques, chain stores (including restaurant chains), e-commerce merchants, and a variety of other retail companies – in formulating and implementing strategies and conducting related claims and litigation in a wide range of goods and services industries. We are at the forefront of technological developments in the industry, regularly acting as a one-stop-shop for clients looking for cutting-edge, targeted, and precise legal counsel to advance their business objectives.
  • U.S. Arbitration – represents clients in various arbitral forums including JAMS, AAA, CPR or other arbitral forums, and before both neutral and non-neutral panels of arbitrators. Our lawyers not only have broad experience trying complex arbitrations through hearing and in seeking injunctive relief in aid of arbitration proceeding, but also some have substantial experience acting as chairs or members of arbitration panels.

The Reed Smith Difference

Our specialized practice-team approach allows us to meet a client’s needs across a broad spectrum of disputes – whenever and wherever they happen to arise. It also provides the flexibility to tap sophisticated attorneys from each of the practice teams to staff focused “swat teams” to tackle complicated, high-stakes engagements that require multiple skill sets and strategies. Our litigators thrive in these high-pressure engagements, and continually exceed expectations with the results that are achieved.

While a number of firms handle high-stakes, complex litigation, very few actually have taken these cases to trial consistently. Our clients regularly rely on us to manage, prepare and drive cases toward trial, and then try those cases when necessary. Reed Smith tries and wins these cases, and the plaintiffs’ bar is well aware of the firm’s trial skills and capabilities. In addition to its trial experience, Reed Smith has one of the premier appellate practices in the country, and has been instrumental in creating favorable law for our clients in many jurisdictions. Finally, Reed Smith has one of the largest and most effective insurance recovery practices in the country, and it works closely as part of the CLG to fully assess our clients’ insurance coverage and to develop strategies that optimize their ability to recover defense fees and indemnity costs.

Given the inherent risks and staggering cost of litigation, we understand that our clients need alternatives. The best alternative to winning a case at trial is winning or reducing the risk through well-executed motion practice. While a trial win can certainly change the impact of the litigation, knocking a case out on Daubert, class certification or a global motion for summary judgment can bring the litigation to an end without the risk that a jury brings to the equation. Additionally, there are times when the most effective exit is through settlement. In every litigation, we partner with our clients to set the direction of their defense around the potential endgame.

We also understand that the staggering financial impact of defending complex litigation can, at times, be just as threatening as the litigation itself. We work closely with our clients’ in-house legal teams and their corporate finance partners to establish realistic budget goals that enable our team to set and meet or exceed expectations – without surprises. Our lawyers have committed themselves to cost efficiencies while partnering with clients in a number of litigation and pre-litigation matters. We reduce the associated costs of complex litigation management for our clients by:

  • Creating successful alternative fee arrangements
  • Making cost-cutting and budgeting part of the overall strategy
  • Efficient use of state-of-the-art E-Discovery and case management technology
  • Effectively managing work flow across worldwide offices

What Our Clients and Peers Say about Reed Smith

Our commercial litigation results have been recognized by legal ranking referral guides. U.S. News & World Report has listed Reed Smith’s Commercial Litigation Group in Tier 1 for Best Lawyers and Best Law Firms. Reed Smith is listed in The Lawyer Global Litigation Top 50 as the fifth-largest litigation firm in the world, based on the number of litigation lawyers. The BTI Litigation Outlook 2015 noted that Reed Smith’s Complex Commercial Litigation Group was ranked as best-suited to help in litigation.