Litigation and Trial Services
Experience. Client-focused results. Trusted advice. For years, these have been the keys to success for Varnum’s trial group. Our trial lawyers have the skill and expertise to provide clients with effective, high-quality, cost-conscious representation.
Manage the Case
Our approach to every case is straightforward: analyze the case and develop options, strive for superior results, and keep clients informed and involved throughout the proceedings. Give primary responsibility to a trial law partner. Use associates and paralegals to provide efficiency.
Make smart use of technology. Call on attorneys from other Varnum practice areas – corporate, environmental, labor, tax – to strengthen a case or suggest innovative ways to resolve a dispute.
Commercial lawsuits make up a large part of our litigation practice. We handle cases involving contract disputes, environmental claims, securities, antitrust, construction, corporate take-over, product liability and real estate issues. We also represent clients in personal injury cases, patent, trademark and copyright suits, arbitrations, tax proceedings, labor and employment matters, ERISA cases, bankruptcy proceedings and a range of administrative tribunal work.
Our trial attorneys regularly appear in state and federal trial and appellate courts throughout the United States
Diverse Client Base
Who are our clients? They include public and private corporations, non-profits, professional corporations, municipalities, general and limited partnerships, sole proprietorships and individuals. Much of our litigation is on behalf of companies for whom we are general counsel. We also represent out-of-state entities involved in adversary proceedings in Michigan and companies seeking specific litigation expertise.
No matter what the case, we seek the best possible outcome for our clients by putting our experience, knowledge and innovation to work for them.
As some of the first to bring digital projection technology to area courts, our litigation attorneys have invested significantly in technologies that enhance their legal practice. Our Litigation Practice Group has a solid record of using technology as a strategic resource in the achievement of favorable client results.
We make it our responsibility to stay up-to-date with the latest in litigation support technology. We regularly research and test new software applications to determine their use in our practice. We use a variety of case management and trial management software programs to make the litigation of large and small cases simple and mobile. Our in-house Litigation Support Service Team maintains our document databases and provides us with the ability to use document imaging and OCR technologies at a fraction of the cost of outside services.
Our litigation attorneys use the latest in transcript technology, including realtime and transcript management software, giving us the ability to manage as few or as many transcripts as necessary. Our transcript management technology also allows us to search and compare within and between innumerable transcripts to recognize issues and inconsistencies, sometimes in the midst of a deposition or trial.
We use trial presentation software to compile and present complex cases involving documents, transcripts, video clips and photos in a clear and seamless presentation. Our trial presentation software connects to our case management system, giving us the ability to instantaneously adapt presentations during trial to respond to opposing counsel’s case.
It’s not enough just to acquire these technologies; one must also must know how to use them. Our attorneys and legal assistants are well trained in the capabilities of our litigation support software, use it on a regular basis and understand how technology can be used to enhance results.
- Represented former shareholders of independent bottling network against Beverage Company in post-closing contract claim arising under asset purchase agreement. Obtained $8.5 million for former shareholders in settlement.
- Represented plaintiff corporation in trial and obtained a multi-million dollar jury verdict against the United States on an income tax refund claim. The government offered nothing to plaintiff before trial and the verdict is listed as one of the top ten verdicts of 2008 in the Michigan Lawyer’s Weekly.
- Represented defendant corporation in trial in Richmond, Kentucky where plaintiff claimed over $4.8 million in damages from serious injuries resulting from an accident involving defendant’s tractor trailer. Obtained a complete defense verdict on liability from the jury after a one-week trial.
- Defended largest orthopedic physicians’ group in West Michigan, its corporate management company, and several corporate officers in multi-million dollar litigation. Obtained a full dismissal of all claims brought against all defendants in a motion for summary disposition.
- Represented Court appointed receiver in an investment fraud case involving many victims, including a former NHL hockey player. Successfully brought a contempt action against the defendants. The contempt action was tried over several days in Wayne County Circuit Court. Rather than allow the case to reach verdict, the defendant settled the contempt charges by paying penalties of approx. $500,000.00.
- Obtained summary judgment on patent infringement claims relating to liquid-filled chewing gum in lawsuit in which plaintiff
- sought several million dollars in damages. After victory on appeal to the Federal
- Circuit, obtained dismissal of second, related lawsuit in exchange for forgiveness of costs from first lawsuit.
- Defended a national provider of health care software systems in connection with computer copyright infringement claim in which the plaintiff sought $92 million in damages. Following substantial limitation of the plaintiff’s potential damages during the summary judgment process, case was resolved through settlement favorable to client.
- Obtained arbitration award of $2,375,000 for investors against national securities firm in case involving inappropriate investments and failure of securities firm to properly supervise its representatives.
- Defended an action by a producer of books on tape on behalf of author and his literary agents. Brilliance Corporation asserted a breach of contract against author and agents sought lost profits for producing the tape version of the novel. Received a
- no cause of action Jury verdict.
- Defended steel supplier in $3.1 million preferential transfer claim brought by Trustee on behalf of specialty manufacturer. Obtained summary judgment following successful deposition of plaintiff’s expert.
- Represented defendant in contract/commercial litigation tried to a jury. Obtained $3.6 million judgment.
- Defended the designer/distributor of a high-end custom built sports car in a breach contract action in Los Angeles, California. Although the plaintiff claimed over $2 million dollars in damages, the plaintiff dismissed all claims in return for a nominal settlement on the heels of the deposition of plaintiff and a day-long mediation.
- Represented intervenor in a case brought by an environmental group seeking to force MDEQ to issue rules regulating emission of CO2, which could have placed Mid-Michigan Energy’s permit application to build a coal-fired power plant in jeopardy. The Court dismissed the environmental group’s complaint, and the ruling was upheld on appeal.