Securities Litigation

Venable represents corporations, their officers and directors, as well as outside professionals, including accountants and attorneys, who have been sued in securities class action lawsuits. We have litigated virtually every type of securities case, including 1933 and 1934 Act claims, fraud, corporate governance litigation, insider trading, and option disputes among others.

A number of our securities litigators are former government lawyers with experience enforcing federal securities laws, which is particularly valuable where securities class actions run parallel to related SEC or other regulatory proceedings.


  • Venable is defending an oil exploration and extraction consulting firm against securities fraud claims asserted in the Southern District of New York by shareholders of an oil company that retained our client to assess oil resource reserves in Canada. The case squarely presents this issue of the impact of meaningful cautionary statements contained in consultants’ reports circulated in the securities markets. It is expected to have a direct impact on the evolution of the “bespeaks caution” doctrine
  • Venable successfully defended a national clothing retailer in a securities class action and several shareholder derivative suits alleging damages in excess of $100 million. In the course of the representation, Venable obtained cutting-edge rulings confirming a securities defendant’s ability to discover the identity of an alleged corporate whistleblower (see Lefkoe v. Jos. A. Bank Clothiers, Inc., 577 F.3d 240 (4th Cir. 2009)), and limiting the information available to a prospective plaintiff under §220 of the Delaware General Corporation Law (see Norfolk County Retirement System v. Jos. A. Bank Clothiers, Inc., 2009 WL 353746 (Del. Ch. Feb. 12, 2009))
  • Venable successfully defended the former chief financial officer of a national bank in class action litigation alleging violations of the 1933 and 1934 Acts. After successfully moving to dismiss a related shareholder derivative suit commenced in Puerto Rico District Court, Venable successfully negotiated a settlement of the securities fraud suit brought against the client without any admission of culpability and on terms favorable to the client
  • Venable represented Royal Ahold and U.S. Foodservice (USF) in matters arising out of the restatement of Royal Ahold’s financial statements as a result of accounting irregularities of its subsidiary, USF, which resulted in one of the largest securities claim settlements in history. Venable participated in the MDL securities class action brought by shareholders under the anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws, and was the lead counsel for Royal Ahold and USF in litigation against the former CEO of USF for breach of his fiduciary duties in connection with the accounting irregularities at USF

Government Experience

Attorneys who have held senior positions at federal agencies, including:

  • Department of Justice
  • Federal Trade Commission
  • Securities and Exchange Commission
  • Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
  • Department of Labor
  • Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
  • Senior counsel, Securities and Exchange Commission, Division of Enforcement


  • U.S. News – Best Lawyers
    • Best Law Firms, Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants (Tier 1), National, 2011 – 2020
    • Best Law Firms, Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants (Tier 1), Baltimore, 2011 – 2020, 2022 - 2023