If you have not been following the drama surrounding the question of the attorneys’ fees to be paid to class counsel in the State Street foreign currency exchange overcharge case, you will want to read the latest order from District of Massachusetts Judge Mark Wolf. Among other things, in his February 27, 2020 order, Judge Wolf cut the fees of the law firms that acted as class counsel, from $75 million to $60 million. Perhaps even more significantly, Judge Wolf concluded that lawyers at two of the lead plaintiff law firms had violated applicable provisions of the professional code of conduct and referred the attorneys to the local state bar professional practices unit. Judge Wolf’s findings also include his own reflection about the indispensable role of judge in supervising class counsel and their fees. A copy of Judge Wolf’s order can be found here.
Continue Reading Court Ratchets Down Fee Award, Refers Class Counsel for Possible Ethics Violation

One of the recurring issues in securities litigation is the way the erstwhile class counsel and their clients, the prospective class representatives, come together. In what one federal judge described as a "blatant, shocking conflict of interest," it appears, from testimony at a recent lead plaintiff selection hearing, that the leading plaintiffs’ firms are providing

The possibility that a conflict of interest could arise when an attorney or law firm simultaneously representes a corporation and one or more of its officers or directors is a a frequently recurring issue. The issue  was raised recently, for example, in the civil complaint that former Stanford Financial Group CFO Laura Pendergest-Holt filed against the