HGT Law

Practice Areas

 

Practice Areas


Securities Litigation

Securities litigation may be brought to recover for losses sustained in a wide variety of contexts, including losses sustained on stocks purchased on the stock markets, in circumstances where the investor purchased shares of stock based on fraudulent misstatements or omissions by a company and its management; losses on complex derivatives such as collateralized debt obligations (CDOs) and notes issued by structured investment vehicles (SIVs), in circumstances where the issuer of the security and the arranger or underwriter failed to adequately disclose the nature or risks of the underlying assets, or where the arranger had rigged the derivative instrument so that it was guaranteed to fail; and even losses sustained on agreements to participate in the profits in an oil and gas exploration project.

When an investor sustains losses on the same security as other investors, it may decide to pursue recovery as part of a class action. Alternatively, the investor may seek to “opt out” of the class action, and pursue recovery individually. As results of several studies have shown, an investor in an opt-out action frequently recovers more than an investor who is part of a class action. Frequently, the recovery by an opt-out plaintiff will be multiples of the amounts recovered by members of a class. If you have received notification of the filing of a class action, and you are uncertain as to your legal options, we will discuss your investments and losses, and assist you in deciding the best course to maximize your recovery.

One of the core practices of the firm is handling general commercial litigation matters on behalf of its clients, whether plaintiffs or defendants, in state and federal trial and appellate courts. Our commercial litigation clients include individual and institutional investors, public and private corporations, business entrepreneurs and consumers.  We serve the commercial litigation needs of both U.S. and overseas clients, including clients from China, Hong Kong and Australia.

We have represented and are currently representing clients in commercial litigation matters involving a wide variety of subjects, including contractual disputes arising from real estate investments and development projects; disputes in connection with energy investment projects such as oil and gas participation agreements and agreements to develop geothermal resources; claims involving professional malpractice against attorneys and auditors; investor claims against corporations, directors and officers, and brokerages for securities fraud and other violations of federal and state securities laws; and shareholder challenges to merger and acquisition transactions.

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Commercial Litigation

One of the core practices of the firm is handling general commercial litigation matters on behalf of its clients, whether plaintiffs or defendants, in state and federal trial and appellate courts. Our commercial litigation clients include individual and institutional investors, public and private corporations, business entrepreneurs and consumers.  We serve the commercial litigation needs of both U.S. and overseas clients, including clients from China, Hong Kong and Australia.

We have represented and are currently representing clients in commercial litigation matters involving a wide variety of subjects, including contractual disputes arising from real estate investments and development projects; disputes in connection with energy investment projects such as oil and gas participation agreements and agreements to develop geothermal resources; claims involving professional malpractice against attorneys and auditors; investor claims against corporations, directors and officers, and brokerages for securities fraud and other violations of federal and state securities laws; and shareholder challenges to merger and acquisition transactions.

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Corporate Governance Litigation

Effective corporate governance procedures are a significant prophylactic means of protecting against breaches of fiduciary duty and other abuses by a company’s directors and officers. Accordingly, the firm assists its clients, whether institutions or individuals, to effect corporate governance changes at companies and in taking other steps to ensure the accountability of a company’s board of directors and senior management.

For example, the firm has experience in investigating and bringing litigation to challenge such matters as:

  • executive compensation

  • the adequacy of disclosure of executive perquisites

  • related party transactions between a company and its officers

  • corporate transactions that result in shareholder dilution and other harm to shareholders

  • the nomination and appointment of directors

Corporate governance changes can be effected by bringing a derivative action on behalf of the company to assert breaches of fiduciary duty by the company’s board or officers, or as part of the settlement of a related securities litigation.

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SEC Whistleblower Representation

Under the recently enacted Dodd-Frank legislation, certain incentives and protections are afforded to individuals who report to the SEC violations of the securities laws, such as accounting fraud, corporate fraud, insider trading, stock broker fraud, and other serious offenses. Specifically, the Dodd-Frank legislation provides that the SEC shall pay awards to eligible whistleblowers who voluntarily provide the SEC with original information that leads to a successful enforcement action yielding monetary sanctions of over $1 million. The amount awarded will range between 10 percent and 30 percent of the total monetary sanctions collected by the SEC. In addition, whistleblowers are protected by the Dodd-Frank legislation, which expressly prohibits retaliation by employers against whistleblowers and provides whistleblowers with a private cause of action in the event that they are discharged or discriminated against by their employers.

We have represented clients in various SEC whistleblower actions. Clients who choose the firm to represent them will receive expert guidance through the entire whistleblower process: the initial consultation with an experienced lawyer to discuss the client’s rights as a whistleblower and whether the client is entitled to receive an award from the SEC; the investigation of the whistleblower’s allegations; the presentation of the whistleblower’s claims to the SEC, including the completion of the necessary paperwork; attending any meetings with the SEC to discuss the whistleblower’s claims; protecting the whistleblower against retaliation during this process; and ensuring the whistleblower is entitled to a financial award from the SEC.

Because of our experience with the entire process, we will ensure that whistleblower claims are presented to the proper SEC office and personnel, so that claims receive priority attention and are handled expeditiously.

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