Joseph T. Baio

Senior Counsel

New York
Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP
787 Seventh Avenue
New York, NY 10019-6099
T 212 728 8203
F 212 728 9203
jbaiowillkie.com

Joseph T. Baio is senior counsel in the Litigation Department. Joe regularly tries cases. He has represented our corporate and individual clients in cases tried before juries, judges and administrative panels in a full array of high profile business disputes, including claims involving violations of the federal securities laws, breach of contract, fraud, ERISA, breach of fiduciary duty, copyright infringement, tax liability, professional malpractice, fraudulent conveyance and not-for-profit law, among others. He recently secured a unanimous decision from the Supreme Court of the United States limiting the scope of discovery for use in international arbitrations. Joe has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America (2013-2022) for his work in the area of Commercial Litigation.

Highlights

Joseph T. Baio is senior counsel in the Litigation Department. Joe regularly tries cases. He has represented our corporate and individual clients in cases tried before juries, judges and administrative panels in a full array of high profile business disputes, including claims involving violations of the federal securities laws, breach of contract, fraud, ERISA, breach of fiduciary duty, copyright infringement, tax liability, professional malpractice, fraudulent conveyance and not-for-profit law, among others. He recently secured a unanimous decision from the Supreme Court of the United States limiting the scope of discovery for use in international arbitrations. Joe has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America (2013-2022) for his work in the area of Commercial Litigation.

Selected Significant Matters

  •  AlixPartners, LLP v. The Fund for Protection of Investors, United States Supreme Court, No. 21-401, 596 U.S. ____ (June 13, 2022): Counsel of Record and Oral Advocate for Petitioners in successful appeal to the Supreme Court of the United States. Court reversed Second Circuit decision and unanimously held that discovery under 28 USC Section 1782 is not available to parties seeking discovery for use in non-governmental adjudications abroad. Hailed as a “landmark decision” marking a “sea change” that will “transform international arbitration.” Argued on March 23, 2022 (audio available at supremecourt.gov/live_argument). www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/21pdf/21-401_2cp3.pdf
  • Honeywell Int’l, Inc. v. North American Refractory Company Asbestos Settlement Trust, No. 21-02097 (Bankr. W.D. Pa. 2022) (Agresti, J.): Trial counsel for the Trust in week-long bench trial concerning the Trust’s management of multibillion fund and Honeywell’s wrongful interference with the Trust’s administration. Decision pending.
  • Lawson v. Spirit AeroSystems, Inc., No. 18-1100 (D. Kan. 2021) (Melgren, J.): Lead counsel for plaintiff in multi-week in-person trial in Wichita, Kansas. Successfully recovered over $44 million in benefits and interest owed to former CEO of Spirit, which improperly withheld his compensation based on non-compete clause. (First Runner-up, AmLaw Litigator of the Week, Oct. 22, 2021). Lead counsel for appellee in appeal before the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals (No. 21-3213). Appeal pending.
  • In re Neiman Marcus Group, No. 20-32519 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. 2020) (Jones, J.): Bankruptcy hearings. Lead trial counsel for Special Committee for Debtor in connection with successful reorganization following contested hearings.
  • United States v. Aiyer, 18 CR 333 (S.D.N.Y., Koeltl, J., 2019-2020): Jury trial. Co-lead counsel for defendant in multi-week criminal antitrust trial. Appeal pending. (Reported in law.com/litigationdaily/2019/11/13/daily-dicta-willkie-farr-faces-feds-in-fx-trial/)
  • In re Private Equity Dispute (Chicago AAA, 2019): Arbitration hearing. Lead counsel for prevailing respondents in multi-week arbitration brought by rival private equity fund for alleged misappropriation of track record.
  • In re Beny Steinmetz, No. 1:17-CV-02726 (S.D.N.Y., Keenan, J., 2017): Lead counsel for defendants in $10 billion lawsuit stayed by the Court after a hearing. (Shout Out from AmLaw, Dec. 1, 2017). Case dismissed.
  • Sagtikos Manor Historical Socy., Inc. v Robert David Lion Gardiner Found., Inc., NY Slip Op 03342 (April 22, 2015 App. Div., 2d Dept): Appellate victory. Lead counsel in securing dismissal of complaint on standing grounds. (Reported in NY Law Journal article)
  • In re MPM Silicones, LLC, No. 14-22503-rdd, 2014 Bankr. LEXIS 3926 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. Sept. 9, 2014): Bench trial. Lead trial counsel in hotly contested four-day confirmation hearing after which Court approved Momentive's chapter 11 plan.
  • In re GSC Group, Inc., No. 10-14653 (Bankr. S.D.N.Y. 2013) (Chapman, J.): Bench trial. Successfully represent a defendant in multi-week trial seeking forfeiture of fees.
  • Agence France Presse v. Daniel Morel v. Getty Images, Inc., et al. (S.D.N.Y., Nathan, J. 2013): Jury trial. Lead trial counsel for photojournalist Daniel Morel in landmark copyright infringement case involving photos that were taken in the immediate aftermath of 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Jury awarded the maximum statutory damages against both defendants. (AmLaw Litigator of the Week, Nov. 27, 2013).
  • Champion Enterprises, Inc. v. Credit Suisse, Individually and as Agent for Various Participating Lenders (Bankr. D. Del., 2009-2012) (Gross, J.): Lead trial counsel for Credit Suisse in fraudulent conveyance and lender liability action. Principal claims dismissed on motion to dismiss. Trial completed before Chief Judge Kevin Gross. In August 2012, all remaining claims were dismissed against Credit Suisse with prejudice.
  • Arista Records LLC, et al. v. Lime Wire LLC (S.D.N.Y, Wood, J., 2010-2011): Jury trial. Represented defendant Lime Wire and its founder in damages phase of multibillion-dollar trial against the major record companies for inducing copyright infringement. Obtained favorable settlement during second week of trial following cross-examination of CEO of Warner Music Group. (Reported in "How to abash a billionaire," Thomson Reuters News and Insights (5/12/2011)).
  • State of New York v. WRBC, et al. (Adm. Tax Court, 2009-10): Lead counsel in trial over petitioners alleged responsibility for sales tax and penalties in connection with multi purchase and operation of Corporate Aircraft. Petitions granted, no tax liability for clients.
  • Various SEC, U.S. Attorney, FINRA and Attorney General Investigations (1987-Present): Represented corporate and individual clients in dozens of governmental investigations and proceedings over the last twenty-five years.
  • In re Cast Art (New Jersey Superior Court, Middlesex County, Paley, J.): Lead counsel for defendant in five-week accountant-malpractice jury trial. The New Jersey Supreme Court, in a unanimous opinion, reversed and remanded judgment awarded plaintiffs and directed dismissal of the case in its entirety.
  • Fishman v. Zurich Supplemental Executive Retirement Plan (Federal District Court, Northern District of Illinois, Shadur, J., 2005-08): Lead counsel representing defendant and counterclaimant in ERISA litigation challenging "Top Hat" status of SERP. Summary judgment granted dismissing complaint and awarding judgment on client's counterclaim.
  • Dayton Power and Light Corp. v. Forster, et al. (Ohio State Court, O'Connell, J., 2005-07): Month long jury trial. Chief trial lawyer for former CEO in litigation over company's claim for $150 million and client's counterclaim for benefits and alleged breach of fiduciary duty. Settled before jury deliberations with payment of $25 million to client and co-defendants.
  • In re Cablevision Securities Litigation (NY State Court, NY Federal Court, and Delaware Chancery Court, 2006-08): Representation of various Committees of Cablevision's Board of Directors in connection with class action litigations and derivative suits arising out of a series of proposed multi-billion dollar transactions.
  • Verizon Directories Corp. v. Yellow Book USA, Inc. (E.D.N.Y., Weinstein, J., 2004): Co-counsel for defendant in two-month bench trial. Judge awarded plaintiff no damages in Lanham Act case alleging unfair trade practices.
  • In re Oxford Securities Litigation (2002-2003): Lead trial counsel for accounting firm defendant in multibillion dollar class action litigation. Settled favorably during jury selection.
  • The Hartford Art School, Inc. v. University of Hartford (2002): Lead counsel for the plaintiff after month-long trial in matter involving ownership and use of multimillion dollar Endowment Fund. Verdict and judgment for client following trial.

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