Complex Business Litigation


[VIDEO: Business Litigation leaders Jeffrey Dunlap, Paul Harris and Robin Miller discuss Ulmer & Berne’s deep bench and approach to achieving success for our clients.]

We recognize the amount of distraction and dislocation that can result from complex business litigation, and we work with our clients to minimize such effects, while maximizing successful outcomes. For over 100 years, Ulmer & Berne’s litigation attorneys have assisted business clients in resolving complex disputes.

Drawing from a pool of more than 90 highly skilled attorneys actively engaged in representing clients nationwide in litigation and arbitration matters, we partner with our clients to determine goals, evaluate risks and devise proactive and cost-effective solutions. We respect budgets and honor timelines. We are sensitive to the advantages of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in appropriate situations, and we help our clients determine when it is advantageous to use mechanisms such as mediation, arbitration and other ADR techniques.

Our litigators practice regularly in state and federal courts throughout the United States. We also act as national and multi-district litigation (MDL) counsel in securities, mass tort and other class action matters.

We bring our clients a combination of well-developed trial skills based on regular court and ADR appearances in a wide range of matters, and substantive expertise in discrete areas of law. This combination of talents enables us to staff matters efficiently. In addition, our specialized practice groups and state-of-the-art technology enable us to remain current in all of the substantive areas in which we litigate.

Over the years, Ulmer & Berne’s litigators have achieved an enviable record of successful litigation outcomes for our clients. In 2017 and 2014, Ulmer & Berne’s Litigation Department was named “Ohio Firm of the Year” by Benchmark Litigation has been consistently ranked in Ohio in Chambers USA:  America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. Additionally, many of our litigation attorneys are routinely recognized by our clients and peers as top litigators by Chambers USA, Best Lawyers in America®, Super Lawyers®, and similar groups. Our broad experience includes handling matters in substantive areas such as:

  • Antitrust
  • Banking
  • Bankruptcy and Creditors’ Rights
  • Business Torts Litigation
  • Civil Appeals
  • Class Actions
  • Construction and Real Estate
  • Contract Disputes
  • Corporate Governance Disputes
  • Defense of False Advertising and other Consumer Claims
  • Employment and Labor Cases
  • ERISA/Employee Benefits
  • Franchise and Distributorship Litigation
  • Intellectual Property Litigation (all types)
  • Life Sciences
  • Litigation arising out of M&A and Proxy Contests
  • Mass Torts
  • Pharmaceutical and Medical Device Litigation
  • Product Liability
  • Securities Fraud
  • Trade Secrets and Noncompete Litigation (both as Plaintiff and Defendant)

Press Release   Ulmer & Berne LLP partner Frances Floriano Goins was named to the Benchmark Top 250 Women in Litigation. Ulmer partners Paul R. Harris and Joshua A. Klarfeld were included in Benchmark’s Under 40 Hot List 2017. Individual recognition for Goins, Harris, and Klarfeld comes on the heels...

Press Release Ulmer & Berne announces that partner Robin D. Miller has received the 16th annual Women Worth Watching award from Profiles in Diversity Journal. The honor extends to a select group of trailblazers who have distinguished themselves from their peers based on excellence in their fields and the positive influence they...

Ulmer in the Community John Alten, partner in Ulmer’s Complex Business Litigation Group,  has been elected President of the Board of Directors of Community Resource Services, a non-profit that provides emergency needs assistance, a food pantry, and individualized resource and referral services to low-income residents in Lorain County. John previously served...

Press Release Ulmer & Berne LLP announces that Dolores (Lola) Garcia Prignitz has joined the firm’s Cleveland office as an associate. Before joining Ulmer, Garcia Prignitz served as an Assistant United States Attorney, and was an associate at Jones Day. “We are excited to add Lola to the business litigation...

Ulmer & Berne LLP is pleased to announce the addition of Manju Gupta to the firm’s Cleveland office. Gupta joins Ulmer as counsel from McDonald Hopkins. “Manju has substantial experience helping clients resolve a variety of federal contracting issues,” said Jeffrey Dunlap, Co-Chair of Ulmer’s Business Litigation Practice Group. “Manju’s...

Press Release Ulmer & Berne LLP is pleased to announce the addition of William Yu and Sarah Miller Benoit. Yu will be based in the firm’s Chicago office, and Benoit will be based in Columbus. Both attorneys join Ulmer as counsel from Lewis, Brisbois, Bisgaard & Smith LLP. “Bill and...

Cincinnati-based partner Robin D. Miller has been named by corporate counsel to the BTI Client Service All-Stars 2017 published by BTI Consulting Group. The honor extends to a select group of elite attorneys who are identified as providing the absolute best in client service. According to BTI, Client Service All-Stars...

M&A Litigation Lifts Securities Suits To 20-Year High By Chelsea Naso for Law360, published February 1, 2017 The number of federal securities class actions in 2016 rose to its highest level in two decades. A recently published Law360 article examines some of the factors contributing to the new high-water mark, including a steep...

Press Release Ulmer & Berne LLP is pleased to announce the promotions of five of its attorneys to partner. They include Daniel Gottesman, Richard Hamilton, Jr., Jesse Lipcius, Brad Sobolewski, and Ulmer’s General Counsel, Kenneth Zirm. In addition, Ulmer also elevated associate Evelyn Holmer to counsel. Lipcius is based in...

Ulmer & Berne LLP is pleased to announce that Ronald Betman has joined the firm as Chicago-based counsel in its Business Litigation Practice. A veteran trial lawyer with 30 years of experience in business and financial services litigation, Mr. Betman joins Ulmer from Neal Gerber & Eisenberg LLP, where he...

Ulmer is ranked in 39 categories in the 2017 U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” rankings. Among these, the firm earns U.S. News – Best Lawyers highest rankings in 21 categories. The firm also ranks nationally in 15 categories. Firms included in the 2017 “Best Law Firms” are...

Ulmer is pleased to announce the addition of J. Matthew Linehan who joins the firm as an eDiscovery Attorney. Mr. Linehan will primarily support Ulmer’s complex business litigation practice. Mr. Linehan has a strong background in business litigation with a particular focus on providing clients with intelligent and practical solutions to eDiscovery issues. His...

BTI Consulting Group has ranked Ulmer & Berne LLP in the BTI Litigation Outlook 2017 among the top 15 percent of firms serving large corporate clients in the areas of commercial litigation, employment litigation, and IP litigation. The Litigation Outlook is based on direct feedback from leading legal decision makers....

Ulmer & Berne LLP added to its strong growth over the last several months by welcoming partner Andrew W. Owen. Mr. Owen brings 24 years of experience as a business litigator to Ulmer’s Columbus office. Mr. Owen represents a wide range of clients in all aspects of complex business disputes,...

Ulmer & Berne is pleased to announce the addition of three new attorneys in its Cleveland and Chicago offices. Trevor J. Hardy and Adam R. Watowicz join the firm as Cleveland-based associates in the Litigation and Employee Benefits practices respectively, while Denise Fesdjian joins as a Chicago-based Financial Services associate. Trevor...

On April 27, 2016, the U.S. House of Representatives passed, almost unanimously – 410 to 2 – the “Defend Trade Secrets Act of 2016” (“DTSA”). The DTSA was previously approved by the U.S. Senate, and now heads to President Obama’s desk for signature. The President has praised DTSA and is expected...

Frederick N. Widen, a Cleveland-based partner at Ulmer & Berne LLP, has been nationally recognized as a Client Service All-Star by BTI Consulting Group. The honor extends to a select group of elite attorneys who provide the absolute best in client service, going above and beyond the call of duty...

Ulmer & Berne announces that partner Frances Floriano Goins was selected for inclusion in the 2015 Top 250 Women in Litigation, distributed by Benchmark Litigation, and also has been named a Fellow in The Trial Lawyer Honorary Society of The Litigation Counsel of America. Benchmark’s Top 250 Women in Litigation...

Four Ulmer & Berne partners – Jeffrey F. Peck, Eric M. Robbins, Michael J. Suffern, and Michael N. Ungar – have been recognized by their peers as a 2016 “Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers in America®. Best Lawyers designates only one lawyer per practice area as Lawyer of...

[View Video] Tapping its pipeline of trial-tested litigators, Ulmer & Berne is announcing that three accomplished partners will lead the firm’s respected Business Litigation Practice Group. Cleveland-based partners Jeffrey S. Dunlap and Paul R. Harris will serve as Co-Chairs alongside Cincinnati-based partner Robin D. Miller, who will act as Vice...

Ulmer & Berne LLP welcomes Nicholas B. Wille as an associate in the firm’s Cleveland office. An experienced litigator, Mr. Wille joins the firm from Jones Day, adding more depth and strength to Ulmer & Berne’s nationally recognized litigation practice. Mr. Wille’s practice focuses on complex commercial litigation. He has...

“Michael Nathan Ungar | Ulmer & Berne LLP” Cleveland Jewish News January 15, 2015 Perennial Super Lawyer Michael Nathan Ungar considers settlement of a dispute embroiling Case Western University among his most memorable cases of 2014. Read the full article »

Ulmer & Berne LLP has been ranked within the top 10 percent of all law firms by The BTI Consulting Group, one of the nation’s leading legal industry research firms, in their recently published 2015 BTI Litigation Outlook report. The firm was selected as a “Litigation Powerhouse” and is named...

Ulmer & Berne LLP is pleased to announce that partner Paul R. Harris has been appointed to the Board of Trustees for Lutheran Hospital, a Cleveland Clinic Hospital. Lutheran Hospital is a Cleveland Clinic Hospital located in Ohio City near downtown Cleveland. It is a 204-bed acute-care facility offering sophisticated...

Susan L. Joplin

Susan L. Joplin

Practice Area Attorney

Representative Experience

  • Settled consolidated federal securities fraud action filed against a publicly traded company which allegedly reported false financial results in Securities and Exchange Commission filings. Also settled tag-along shareholder derivative lawsuits filed against the company’s officers and directors.
  • Successfully defended large breach of contract claim brought by outside consultant against a multinational corporation headquartered in Ohio.
  • Represented one of the nation’s largest utilities in a series of class actions and shareholder derivative actions alleging violations of federal securities laws and breaches of fiduciary duty, respectively.
  • Defeated class certification attempt in putative nationwide class action brought by prominent class action plaintiff’s firm against a large publicly traded company.
  • Obtained dismissal of putative nationwide class action seeking nearly $1 billion in damages after prevailing on a critical procedural motion.
  • Represented a large national bank in federal court litigation seeking in excess of $300 million.
  • Successfully represented a client in a significant business litigation whereby an internationally known athlete sought nearly $100 million damages.
  • Obtained a dismissal with no payment of money for a large national real estate developer in a major breach of contract action seeking tens of millions of dollars.
  • Successfully litigated cases in federal and state court on behalf of large corporations involving business torts, contract disputes, product liability, trade secret and non-competes.