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Eric M. Robinson

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New York  |  Phone: 212.537.0408  |   Fax: 610.371.7388

emr@stevenslee.com  

Clients entrust Eric to lead them to a successful final determination at trial, on appeal, or in arbitration. Eric has done so more than 30 times. Smart advocacy more often produces success before trial, whether through a court’s decision or by agreement. Eric has helped clients achieve success in that manner more than 100 times. He regularly represents clients with broken business relationships, in key employee disputes, or in a government investigation or denial of a client’s rights. Eric frequently represents financial services firms, non-profits, pharmaceutical companies, investors, entertainers and broadcasters, executives and creatives.

Eric strives to help each client balance the client’s valuation of a dispute, its cost, and potential outcomes. He co-chairs the Litigation Finance and Alternative Funding Group, and helps clients find and negotiate creative solutions in this area. Since 1995, Eric also has helped clients design and implement non-judicial dispute resolution programs for repetitive claims.

Representative Cases
  • The Roman Catholic Diocese of Rockville Centre, New York, as plaintiff in a federal civil rights lawsuit against the Village of Old Westbury from 2009 through 2017. The Diocese had been prevented for 20 years from developing a new ministry – a Catholic cemetery – on a former 97-acre estate and thoroughbred horse facility in this famous Long Island community. Eric framed and led the Diocese’s pursuit of First Amendment Free Exercise, Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act, and related religious liberty claims. The Diocese through intense pre-trial litigation established that the Free Exercise sought was harmless. It obtained its full entitlement. Queen of Peace Cemetery will provide reverent perpetual care for up to 200,000 Roman Catholics. Millions of acts of religious exercise will happen there into the next century. All will transpire without restraint on the beliefs and practices of the Church. The federal court retains jurisdiction, and with a court-appointed special master, the rights of all concerned will be protected.
  • The former Chief Financial Officer of American International Group, Inc. against interested party transaction claims based on relationships involving AIG, and businesses with directors and officers in common with it. Teachers Retirement System of Louisiana v. Maurice R. Greenberg, et al., Delaware Court of Chancery. Eric represented the same client in a lawsuit by the New York Attorney General in response to securities claims under the Martin Act, and by class plaintiffs in a federal securities lawsuit. The focus included finite reinsurance, accounting for derivatives and hedges, accounting for certain investments in securities, and accounting for deferred acquisition costs. See, e.g., People of the State of New York v. Greenberg, 851 N.Y.S.2d 196 (1st Dep’t 2008).
  • A start-up specialized lending firm in a lawsuit against it and its key executives. The key executives’ former bank sought to prevent the start-up from operating due to the key executives’ client relationships, and related claims. The bank operated profitably until sold.
  • A future Hall of Fame baseball player against civil rights and tort claims that plaintiff pursued with all New York state courts. See, e.g., Priore v. The New York Yankees, et al. 761 N.Y.S.2d 608 (1st Dep’t 2003).
  • An international professional athlete representation firm, in response to securities fraud and employment contract claims from selling principals. The dispute included a federal lawsuit and weeks of evidentiary hearings before a three-arbitrator panel. [Certain Professional Athlete Agents] v. SFX Sports Group, Inc., et al.
  • The world’s largest concert promoter against federal civil rights, conspiracy, and antitrust claims by African-American promoters who claimed they improperly were excluded from the business.
  • National outside employment counsel for a top-five radio broadcaster with stations in 21 states. In part, designed and helped implement a uniform mandatory arbitration agreement for at-will employees, and defended it. See, e.g., Matter of Ball (SFX Broadcasting, Inc.), 665 N.Y.S.2d 444 (3d Dep’t 1997).
  • Pro bono representation examples include: A movie director in a dispute, the resolution of which freed him to direct a critically acclaimed feature film starring Willem Dafoe. Representation of a clubhouse employee during federal investigative activities, then as a trial witness in U.S. v. William Roger Clemens.

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