10 Lowenstein Sandler attorneys form new securities litigation firm (updated)

Gabrielle Saulsbery//August 24, 2020//

10 Lowenstein Sandler attorneys form new securities litigation firm (updated)

Gabrielle Saulsbery//August 24, 2020//

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Ten former Lowenstein Sandler litigation attorneys departed the Roseland-based firm to launch their own outlet out of Manhattan, Rolnick Kramer Sadighi LLP.

Almost the entire group of attorneys and paralegals that formerly comprised the securities litigation group at Lowenstein Sandler LLP made the move to RKS, which will serve the investment management industry including hedge funds, mutual funds, private equity, credit, real estate and structured finance firms.

Lawrence Rolnick, Marc Kramer and Sheila Sadighi are the founding and name partners.

According to an announcement of the firm’s formation, Rolnick, Kramer and Sadighi have recovered more than $1 billion for investment managers and professional investors over the last decade.

The firm will counsel clients on complex issues, including securities fraud, class action opt-outs, appraisal rights, credit issues, debtholder rights and structured finance.

The firm will utilize a unique operating and billing approach, with compensation driven by the returns the attorneys achieve.

“The way we try to measure our success is by the value we create and not necessarily how much time we spend on the matter,” said Rolnick, who previously chaired the securities litigation practice at Lowenstein Sandler, where he worked for 28 years. “Lowenstein, being largely a defense-side firm, is built around the billable hour. We wanted to create a model in which our revenue was divorced from that principal and more in line with client interests.”

“It just made more sense to have a firm that was oriented in that fashion. It’s the way our clients serve their clients. If you invest your money in a mutual fund or hedge fund, you care about your return. You’re not necessarily keeping track of how much time they spend on one investment versus another. All you care about is the result—and we’re agreeing to provide a service on the same basis,” Rolnick said.

The trio had been talking for some time and formally informed management of their decision to part ways just after the July Fourtho holiday.

Rolnick expressed excitement about having Sadighi both as managing partner and a name partner, noting that having a woman in those roles is “too rare in the legal community.” Sadighi spent her entire career up until this point at Lowenstein, starting as an associate two decades ago.

The other former Lowenstein attorneys joining RKS are Steven Hecht, Michael Hampson, Richard Bodnar, Brandon Fierro, Nicole Castiglione, Jennifer Randloph and Jarett Sena.

A satellite office will be located at 300 Executive Drive in West Orange.

The securities litigation group at Lowenstein Sandler will be chaired by Tom Redburn going forward.

Gary Wingens, chairman and managing partner, Lowenstein Sandler LLP

“Tom has spent his entire career as a securities litigator. He will lead a team that continues to include many partners and associates with deep experience in the space. Under Tom’s leadership, we will expand the SLG’s mandate to further meet the needs of our rapidly growing M&A, capital markets, investment fund and structured finance clients – whether as plaintiffs or defendants in securities matters,” said Lowenstein Sandler Chairman and Managing Partner Gary Wingens in an emailed statement to NJBIZ.

“The group that is leaving includes many long-time friends – we fully expect that friendship and collaboration to continue for the benefit of our mutual clients and we wish them well,” he said of the now-RKS team.

A representative for RKS did not return a request for comment by press time.

Editor’s note: A previous version of this article indicated nine attorney were headed to Rolnick Kramer Sadighi LLP, however the correct number is 10; the story was updated at 10:41 a.m. EST on Aug. 25, 2020. It was updated at 2:58 p.m. EST on Aug. 25, 2020, to include remarks from Lawrence Rolnick.