MICHAEL D. DONOVAN, a founding member of the firm, is admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States, the United States Courts of Appeals for the Second, Third, Eighth, Ninth and Tenth Circuits, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, the United States District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York as well as the state courts of Pennsylvania and New York and the courts of Washington, D.C.
He is a graduate of Vermont Law School (J.D. cum laude 1984) and Syracuse University (A.B. 1981). He was the Head Notes Editor and a staff member of the Vermont Law Review from 1982 through 1984. While on the Law Review, he authored Note, Zoning Variance Administration in Vermont, 8 Vermont L. Rev. 370 (1984). Following graduation from law school, Mr. Donovan was a trial attorney with the Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, D.C. where he prosecuted numerous securities cases and enforcement matters, including injunctive and disciplinary actions against public companies, broker/dealers and accounting firms. Mr. Donovan has co-authored “Preserving Judicial Recourse for Consumers: How to Combat Overreaching Arbitration Clauses,” 10 Loyola Consumer L. Rev. 269 (1998); “The Overlooked Victims of the Thrift Crisis,” Miami Review, Feb. 13, 1990 and “Conspiracy of Silence: Why S&L Regulators Can’t Always be Trusted,” Legal Times, Feb. 5, 1990.
Mr. Donovan has successfully tried to jury three class action cases:
- Braun v. Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., 2005 WL 3623389 (Pa. Com. Pl. Dec. 27, 2005) (judgment was for $78.4 million for the class plus an additional $62 million in liquidated damages along with $10.2 million in prejudgment interest for approximately $150.6 million; in June 2011 the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the class judgment)
- Samuel-Bassett v. Kia Motors America, Inc., 2006 WL 3949458 (Pa. Com. Pl. Dec. 28, 2006) (verdict of $600 per class member, for an aggregate classwide verdict of $5.4 million)
- Little v. Kia Motors America, Inc., No. UNN-L-0800-01006 (N.J. Super. (Union Cty.) verdict entered June 6, 2008)( verdict of $750 per class member, for an aggregate classwide verdict of approximately $6.0 million)
Mr. Donovan has served as co-lead counsel in the following securities class actions:
- In re Sovereign Bancorp, Inc. Shareholders Litigation, No. 110802587 (Phila. C.P. filed 2008)( parties agreed to a substantial settlement that modified the terms of the proposed acquisition)
- In re Sunterra Corporation Securities Litigation,(M.D. Fla. 2005)(settled for $5.45 million)
- Selis v. KTI, Incorporated , (D. N.J. 2003)(settled for $3.8 million)
- In re Worldport Securities Litigation , (D. Ga. 2002)(settled for $5.1 million)
- Phronesis Capital Partners v. Wilmar Corp. (N.J. Super. 1999) (proposed merger case settled for corrective disclosures and terms)
- Lines v. Marble Financial Corp. , (D. Vt. 1991) (settled for $2 million together with substantial changes to the company’s loan loss reserve procedures)
- Jones v. Amdura Corp. , (D. Colo. 1991)(action against directors settled for $4,962,500 and against company after bankruptcy for $1.2 million)
- In re Columbia Shareholders Litigation (De. Ch. 1991)(merger case settled for $2 per share increase in amount paid to shareholders).
- Rosen v. Fidelity Investments , [Current] Fed. Sec. L. Rep. 98,949 (E.D. Pa. Nov. 28, 1995)(opinion certifying class of mutual fund purchasers; case settled for increases to fund assets).
In addition, Mr. Donovan had had a substantial role in the prosecution of the following cases, among others:
- In re Corel Corporation Securities Litigation , (E.D. Pa. 2003) (settlement for $7 million pending final court approval)
- Pallas v. McGinn, et al., (D. N.J. 2003) (stockholder derivative suit on behalf of Lucent, Inc. with proposed settlement pending court approval)
- White v. Heartland High Yield Municipal Bond Fund , (E.D. Wisc. 2002)(partial settlement of $14 million against all defendants other than defendant PriceWaterhouseCoopers).
- In re Sykes Enterprises Securities Litigation , (M.D. Fla. 2003)(settlement of $30 million approved in March 2003).
- In re Trustcorp Securities Litigation , (N.D. Ohio 1990)(settled for $5,600,000)
- Moskowitz v. Lopp , 128 F.R.D. 624 (E.D. Pa. 1989) (opinion certifying class of stock and option purchasers in fraud on the market and insider trading case)
- In re Hercules Corporation Securities Litigation, (D. Del. 1992)(settled for $17.25 million).
In the area of consumer justice, Mr. Donovan has argued the following cases, among others:
- Rossman v. Fleet Bank (R.I.), N.A., 280 F.3d 384 (3d Cir. 2002) (United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit)
- Lemelledo v. Beneficial Management Corp. of America, 150 N.J. 255 (1997). (New Jersey Supreme Court)
- Smiley v. Citibank (South Dakota), N.A., (United States Supreme Court) 116 S. Ct. 806 (argued Apr. 24, 1996)
- Sherman v. Citibank (South Dakota), N.A., 668 A.2d 1036 (N.J. 1995) (New Jersey Supreme Court)
- Hunter v. Greenwood Trust Co., 668 A.2d 1067 (N.J. 1995) (New Jersey Supreme Court)
- In re Citibank Credit Card Litigation, 653 A.2d 39 (Pennsylvania Superior Court 1995)
- Gadon v. Chase Manhattan Bank, N.A., 653 A.2d 43 (Pa. Super. 1995).
Mr. Donovan has provided testimony before the United States Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs (Jan. 25, 2007) concerning the CARD Act and before the House of Representatives Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law, Committee on the Judiciary, concerning the Arbitration Fairness Act (Apr. 29, 2009).
Mr. Donovan has appeared as faculty member and speaker at the American Bar Association’s Class Action Forum, the Pennsylvania Bar Institute’s Banking Law Update, the Practicing Law Institute’s Financial Services Litigation Forum, the Consumer Credit Regulation Forum of the New Jersey Bar Association, and the National Consumer Rights Litigation Conference sponsored by the National Consumer Law Center.
Mr. Donovan is a member of the American Bar Association (Litigation and Business Law Sections), the Pennsylvania Bar Association, the New York Bar Association, and the District of Columbia Bar Association. He is the Chair of the Consumer Law Subcommittee of the ABA Litigation Section’s Class Actions and Derivative Suits Committee. He is also the former Vice Chair of the National Association of Consumer Advocates and an active member of Trial Lawyers for Public Justice. He received the 2009 Vern Countryman Award for Excellence in Consumer Law awarded by the National Consumer Law Center and was a 2007 Trial Lawyer of the Year Finalist recognized by Public Justice.