Shari A. Brandt is a partner with more than 20 years of experience representing institutions and individuals in high stakes matters including white collar criminal and regulatory proceedings, internal investigations, and complex commercial civil litigation. Clients have described her as: having “deep knowledge of the subject matter, sound judgment, [and] great instincts,” “very client service oriented,” “extremely smart, experienced, hardworking and thorough”, “does a great job with really complex cases,” and someone who “works incredibly hard to ensure that all bases are covered.” (Legal 500, 2010-2020; Chambers USA 2020). more +
Ms. Brandt regularly conducts internal investigations and handles matters that proceed simultaneously in regulatory, white collar defense and civil litigation forums, including defending institutions in class action proceedings. She represents clients in civil litigations at the federal and state level, arbitrations and mediations, as well as defending against investigations by the CFTC, SEC, FINRA, United States Attorney’s Office, Department of Justice, State Attorney’s General offices and other governmental and self-regulatory bodies.
Ms. Brandt currently serves as a member of RK&O's Executive Committee. In 2000, she was an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Fordham University School of Law. Ms. Brandt is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, State Bars of New York and New Jersey as well as the United States District Courts for the Southern District of New York, Eastern District of New York and District of New Jersey.
- Representing brokerage firms in connection with industrywide CFTC investigation into the trading of interest rate products in connection with corporate bond issuances.
- Conducting investigation into company and personnel accused of extortion and blackmail.
- Conducted investigations for multiple brokerage firms in connection with domestic and international regulatory inquiries into the setting of financial benchmark rates and trading of associated financial products (including F/X, F/X options, and interest rates swaps), and defend against related civil litigation.
- Conducted investigation for brokerage firm in connection with industrywide CFTC investigation into the setting of the ISDAFIX benchmark rate.
- Conducted investigation for financial guaranty insurer in connection with the purchase and sale of financial guaranty insurance leading up to the financial crisis.
- Conducted investigation for global bank into anonymous allegations of kickbacks and bribery.
- Conducted investigation for footwear retailer into allegations of accounting irregularities and related investigation by the SEC.
OTHER INSTITUTIONAL REPRESENTATIONS
- Firms and individuals in connection with CFTC enforcement investigations.
- A financial guaranty insurer in litigation across the country and regulatory inquiries concerning bond offerings, auction rate securities and residential mortgage-backed securities.
- A brokerage firm in connection with regulatory inquiries into anti-competitive conduct concerning credit default swaps.
- A private equity firm in two lengthy arbitrations concerning hedge fund valuation, employment law and breach of contract issues.
- A private equity firm in connection with breach of contract and other post-closing claims arising from sale of a business.
Lead attorney for defendant firm in connection with class action litigation concerning an alleged antitrust conspiracy to manipulate the setting of the U.S. Dollar ISDAFIX benchmark rate. Case settled favorably after briefing on class certification was submitted by both sides, and fact and expert discovery was complete.
Lead attorney for multiple defendants in numerous class action litigations alleging antitrust, Commodity Exchange Act and RICO violations in the setting of various financial benchmark rates:
- U.S. Dollar LIBOR: succeeded in having clients dropped from certain actions and dismissed from others for lack of personal jurisdiction.
- Yen LIBOR and EuroYen TIBOR: succeeded in having clients dismissed from one action for lack of personal jurisdiction; succeeded in having second action dismissed for lack of standing, but ruling was reversed on appeal and the action is currently subject to additional motion practice in the district court.
- Bank Bill Swap Rate (Australian benchmark): succeeded in having clients dismissed for lack of personal jurisdiction.
- Swiss Franc LIBOR: succeeded in having action involving 12 clients and other defendants dismissed for lack of standing by the plaintiffs. (Dismissal currently on appeal to the Second Circuit.)
- EURIBOR: succeeded in having clients dismissed for lack of personal jurisdiction. (Dismissal currently on appeal to the Second Circuit.)
- Dutch Litigation on Financial Benchmarks: Representing two clients in Dutch class action litigation filed in Amsterdam concerning alleged manipulation of numerous financial benchmarks. Succeeded in having one client dismissed for lack of jurisdiction and in having claims narrowed as to the other client to a shorter time span involving only allegations on Yen LIBOR and EuryoYen TIBOR. (Currently in the midst of briefing on admissibility of plaintiff foundation to assert class claims.)
- The former president of a company in connection with Department of Justice antitrust inquiry.
- A trader in connection with multiple class action litigations and associated regulatory inquiries concerning GSE Bond trading.
- A trader in connection with class action litigation and associated criminal inquiries concerning Treasury Auction trading.
- A group of employees in the credit department of a bank in connection with multiple regulatory inquiries and civil litigation into the purchase and sale of RMBS.
- Chief engineer of automobile manufacturer in connection with criminal, regulatory and civil inquiries into defect issues.
- An independent distribution consultant in connection with issues surrounding the distribution of a Sarbanes Oxley Fair Fund.
- The president of a brokerage firm in connection with multiple regulatory and criminal investigations into market timing.
- The president of a brokerage firm in connection with SEC investigation into market misrepresentations.
- Senior company employees as witnesses in the In re Tyco International Ltd Securities Litigation class action and related regulatory and criminal investigations.
- A senior officer of Imclone in connection with regulatory, criminal and congressional subcommittee inquiries into insider trading allegations.
Honors & Awards
- Ranked by Chambers USA in Litigation: White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations (2018-2020)
- Selected by Benchmark Litigation as a Top Woman in Litigation (2015-2020) and as a Local Litigation Star (2016-2021)
- Named to Global Investigations Review's Inaugural Top 100 Women in Investigations list (2015)
- Recommended by The Legal 500 United States in the areas of Corporate Investigations & White Collar Criminal Defense, General Commercial Disputes and Securities Litigation (2010-2020)
- Selected by Super Lawyers Magazine as a New York Super Lawyer for Business Litigation, Securities Litigation and White Collar Criminal Defense (2012-2020) and as a New York Rising Star (2011)
- Fellow of the American Bar Foundation
Professional & Community Affiliations
Member, Law360 Securities Editorial Advisory Board
Member, Jewish Federation of Greater Metrowest NJ Board of Trustees
Member, Jewish Family Service of Metrowest Board of Trustees
Member, New York City Bar, White Collar Crime Committee