Julia Beskin is a partner in the New York office. Her practice focuses on complex commercial disputes, with an emphasis on securities, contractual disputes, M&A-related litigation, and corporate governance. Ms. Beskin was recently named a Leading Plaintiff Financial Lawyer by Lawdragon 500. Throughout her career, Ms. Beskin has represented plaintiffs and defendants in cases involving violations of securities registration requirements under the Securities Act of 1933 and state blue sky laws; fraud in the sale of public and private securities; insider trading; breach of fiduciary duty by directors and officers; cases alleging market manipulation; and breach of representations and warranties in the sale of stock or corporate assets. Ms. Beskin has also litigated disputes concerning RICO, copyright and patents, trade dress, bankruptcy, and foreclosure under the Uniform Commercial Code. Additionally, Ms. Beskin has represented clients in regulatory investigations by the SEC, DOJ and various state and foreign agencies, including with regard to OFAC compliance, the FCPA, and accounting fraud. Ms. Beskin has extensive experience representing clients in the biotech, cannabis, insurance, pharmaceutical, energy, and financial services industries.
Ms. Beskin is an experienced trial lawyer. As first chair, she recently secured a total victory in a JAMS arbitration, prevailing entirely on her client’s claim and successfully defending against a $100 million counterclaim. Among other high profile matters, Ms. Beskin represented the Federal Housing Finance Authority in its landmark securities actions against numerous financial institutions that has resulted in approximately $20 billion in recoveries.
Financial, M&A, Governance, and Securities
- Currently representing Sol Global Investments f/k/a Scythian Biosciences Corp., an investment company focused on the cannabis industry, and its Chief Investment Officer, Andy DeFrancesco, in a class action. The plaintiffs allege that Sol Global and DeFrancesco violated securities fraud laws by misrepresenting the value of certain assets Sol Global sold to Aphria Inc. and allege they were harmed when the true value of these assets was revealed to the public.
- Currently representing bio-tech company NantCell, Inc., and its majority stockholder, Patrick Soon-Shiong, in an action brought in the Delaware Court of Chancery by two shareholders of Altor, a company that NantCell announced acquired in a merger transaction. Quinn Emanuel (together with Delaware counsel) defeated plaintiffs’ motion for a temporary restraining order enjoining the transaction, and recently obtained dismissal of plaintiffs’ claims for breach of fiduciary duty on the basis of a covenant not to sue.
- Successfully defended Solus Alternative Asset Management and affiliated funds in a Delaware Court of Chancery in a lawsuit alleging breach of an LLC agreement.
- Successfully defended bio-tech company Precision Biologics in a Delaware Court of Chancery action for breach of fiduciary duty.
- Successfully represented Spectra Energy in a series of shareholder lawsuits filed in the Delaware Court of Chancery and the Southern District of Texas bringing disclosure and fiduciary duty claims, which arose from Spectra’s merger with Enbridge Energy. Plaintiffs dismissed all six lawsuits in exchange for a modest mootness fee.
- Achieved dismissal of securities and state law claims brought against E*TRADE Financial Corporation and E*TRADE Securities in actions based on payment for order flow.
- Obtained dismissal of federal securities fraud and control person claims brought against Amira Nature Foods (a large Indian manufacturer and exporter of rice and other food products) and certain of its executives. Plaintiffs brought a class action alleging that Amira overstated its revenues; the court granted Quinn Emanuel’s motion to dismiss the complaint.
- Represented two affiliates of the hedge fund Elliott Management in a $300 million-plus shareholder class action in New Jersey state court. The case arose from the 2006 take-private merger of Metrologic Instruments. Plaintiffs alleged that Elliott, as a minority shareholder in Metrologic at the time of the merger, breached fiduciary duties that it purportedly owed to Plaintiffs. Quinn Emanuel took over the case from prior counsel after New Jersey’s Appellate Division reversed the trial court’s dismissal of Elliott from
- Member of the trial team that obtained a complete victory for private equity firm First Reserve in a case in which unsecured creditors were seeking standing to bring claims against for First Reserve totaling $1 billion in connection with a portfolio company that filed for bankruptcy. After a 14-day trial, the bankruptcy court denied the unsecured creditors’ motion for standing, ruling that the claims it had plead against First Reserve were not colorable.
- Obtained dismissal of a $250 million civil RICO action in Delaware District Court at the motion to dismiss stage.
- Represented Sabine Oil & Gas and affiliates in connection with shareholder class action pending in New York Supreme Court arising out of publicly announced transaction with Forest Oil.
- Represented Pitney Bowes Inc. in defense of a Rule 10b-5 securities class action lawsuit in the District of Connecticut. Won motion to dismiss all claims, with prejudice, after taking over the case from previous counsel.
- Represented the Federal Housing Finance Agency, as conservator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, in recovering approximately $20 billion in actions concerning residential mortgage-backed securities sold to Fannie and Freddie by more than a dozen major banks (including UBS, JPMorgan, Merrill Lynch, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, Deutsche Bank, Credit Suisse, Barclays, First Horizon, Bank of America, Nomura, and RBS). Ms. Beskin was part of the trial team that obtained a verdict of over $800 million for FHFA against Nomura and RBS in the Southern District of New York.
- Currently representing Woody Allen and Gravier Productions in a breach of contract lawsuit against Amazon arising from Amazon’s termination of a multi-picture acquisition agreement.
- Currently representing investment management firm The Silverfern Group against Citibank seeking in excess of $400 million for breach of contract arising from Citibank’s abandonment of its “best efforts” obligations in an agreement with Silverfern.
- Currently defending an individual in a seven-figure breach of warranty lawsuit in the Delaware District Court.
- First-chair of a three-day JAMS arbitration for breach of contract, which resulted in an award granting client all damages sought, and denying of the entirety of defendant’s $100 mm counterclaim for breach of fiduciary duty and other claims.
- Successfully represented General Motors in a proceeding the United States Bankruptcy Court Southern District of New York concerning the enforceability of an agreement between plaintiffs and the GM bankruptcy trust. Following highly expedited discovery and a two-day trial, the court ruled in GM’s favor and found that the agreement was not enforceable.
- Successfully represented AIG in a declaratory judgment action in which Brookfield Asset Management sought to walk away from its $1.5 billion obligation to AIG under an interest rate swap on that basis that AIG triggered events of default under the swap.
Other Complex Commercial Litigation:
- Currently representing the US Soccer Foundation in a trademark dispute with the US Soccer Federation.
- Currently representing Caruso Properties in a federal antitrust lawsuit against the International Center of Shopping Centers.
- Obtained dismissal at the motion to dismiss stage for First Data and an individual executive in a lawsuit alleging breach of obligations under the Uniform Commercial Code, breach of fiduciary duty and conversion in New Jersey state court.
- Represented AIG and its subsidiaries in a multi-district litigation relating to defective Chinese-manufactured drywall. Successfully opposed to motion to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction brought by a defendant Chinese manufacturer and its subsidiary, and ultimately obtained a favorable settlement with plaintiffs.
- Obtained dismissal for Sandoz AG, Sandoz International GmbH (and two individuals employees) in a litigation in New York state court commercial division arising out of the merger of Sandoz Inc. and Oriel Therapeutics. Inc.
- Class Action Litigation
- Energy Sector Disputes
- Litigation Representing Plaintiffs
- Mergers & Acquisitions Litigation
- Securities Litigation
- Structured Finance & Derivatives Litigation
- Investigations, Government Enforcement & White Collar Criminal Defense Practice
- Investment Fund Litigation
- Distressed Investment Litigation
- Hedge Fund Litigation
- Investment Advisor & Asset Manager Litigation
- Private Equity Fund Litigation
- Representing Pension Funds, Other Managed Funds, and Government Agencies as Plaintiffs
- Cannabis Litigation
- Real Estate Litigation
- Construction Litigation
- University of Toronto Faculty of Law
(J.D., with Honors, 2005)
- University of Toronto
(B.A., with Honors, with High Distinction, Political Science and History, 2002)
- The State Bar of New York
- Ropes and Gray LLP:
- Associate, 2010-2011
- Associate, 2010-2011
- Sullivan & Cromwell LLP:
- Associate, 2005-2010
Presenter, "Unpacking Cross-border Cannabis Sector Class Action Risks" (Webinar, June 16, 2020)
“Coronavirus Implications for Securities Litigation,” Quinn Emanuel memorandum (April 2020) (available at: https://www.quinnemanuel.com/media/1420045/coronavirus-implications-for-securities-litigation-1.pdf).
Presenter, “Securities Litigation Perspectives: Canada vs. US,” The Advocates Society, Toronto, Canada (March 2020)
Panelist, “What is 'fraud' anyway?,” Asset Recovery America Conference (September 2019)
Presenter, "Unpacking Cross-border Cannabis Sector Class Action Risks" (June 16, 2020)
“Fiduciary duties of director appointed by private equity firms: pitfalls and best practices,” Financier Worldwide, October 2019 edition (forthcoming)
“Privilege logs in the Delaware Court of Chancery,” Financier Worldwide, September 2019 edition (available at https://www.financierworldwide.com/privilege-logs-in-the-delaware-court-of-chancery#.XXqtYjZYaUk)
American College of Investment Council Forum, Panelist, “Secured transactions Under The Uniform Commercial Code” (April 2017)
CLE Presentation to the New York In-House Counsel Meet-Up Group, “A Litigator’s Perspective On Standard Contractual Clauses” (2017)
- Member, ABA Professional Liability Litigation Committee
- Member, Women Chancery Lawyers
- Member, Women in E-discovery