Bleichmar Fonti & Auld LLP | Complex Litigation Law Firm | Joseph Fonti
Team
Joseph  A. Fonti

EDUCATION

New York University Law School
J.D., 1999
Marden Moot Court

New York University
B.A., cum laude, 1996

ADMISSIONS

New York (2000)

U.S. Supreme Court (2007)

U.S. Courts of Appeals:
  • First Circuit (2012)
  • Second Circuit (2010)
  • Fourth Circuit (2012)
  • Ninth Circuit (2007)
  • Tenth Circuit (2013)

U.S. District Courts:
  • S.D.N.Y. (2001)
  • E.D.N.Y. (2001)

RECOGNITION

  • Recognized as a
    Law360 "Rising Star"
  • Recommended in Securities
    Litigation by Legal 500
Joseph A. Fonti
Partner
CONTACT INFORMATION
Tel: 212-789-1342
Fax: 212-205-3962
V-Card

Joseph A. Fonti concentrates his practice on prosecuting complex securities and investment-related matters on behalf of institutional investors.

Joseph’s client commitment, advocacy skills and litigation results have earned him recognition as a Law360 “Rising Star.” He was one of only five securities lawyers in the country—and the only investor-side securities litigator—to receive the distinction. Joe has also been "recommended" in the field of securities litigation by the Legal 500.

Joseph served as co-lead counsel in In re Genworth Financial Inc. Securities Litigation, in the Eastern District of Virginia – widely known as the “rocket docket.” Joseph led the litigation to a remarkable recovery for the class in the amount of $219 million, the largest securities class action recovery ever achieved in that jurisdiction.  In defeating defendants’ motion to dismiss, Joseph secured one of the first pro-investor opinions after the Supreme Court’s recent decision in the Omnicare matter.  Joseph already had notable success in the high-pressure environment of the E.D.Va. In 2013, as lead trial lawyer on behalf of shareholders of Computer Science Corp., after prevailing at class certification and only four weeks before trial in the CSC matter, Joseph and his team secured a $97.5 million settlement – the second-largest cash securities settlement in the court’s history.

Joseph also recently contributed to the prosecution and ultimate resolution of the Weatherford securities litigation (Freedman v. Weatherford International Ltd., et al.).  Joseph’s contribution to this very intense litigation centered on complex accounting and expert matters, and he took trial testimony of several third-party accountants and consultants who were not expected to appear for trial.  Joseph, as part of the team led by his co-founding partner Javier Bleichmar, contributed to an outstanding recovery of $120 million for Weatherford shareholders.

With over a dozen years of experience in investor litigation, Joseph’s career is also marked by significant successes in the area of auditor liability and stock options backdating. He represented shareholders in the $671 million recovery in In re HealthSouth Securities Litigation. Particularly, Joseph played a significant role in recovering $109 million from HealthSouth’s outside auditor Ernst & Young LLP, one of the largest recoveries to date against an auditing firm. He also contributed to securing a $173.5 million settlement in In re Broadcom Corp. Securities Litigation, which, at the time, was the second-largest cash settlement involving a company accused of options backdating. This was the only such case in which claims against the auditors were sustained.

In addition to representing several of the most significant U.S. institutional investors, Joseph has represented a number of Canada’s most significant pension systems and asset managers.  He also provides thought leadership on issues of particular relevance to these clients.  For example, he recently co-authored "Cross-Listed Securities Cases Present Challenges,” for the National Law Journal, (May 30, 2016), which addresses recent Morrison interpretations in light of modern financial markets.  He also led the prosecution of In re NovaGold Resources Inc. Securities Litigation, which resulted in the largest settlement under Canada’s securities class action laws.

Additionally, Joseph has achieved notable success as an appellate advocate. He successfully argued before the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in In re Celestica Inc. Securities Litigation. The Second Circuit reversed an earlier dismissal, and turned the tide of recent decisions by realigning pleading standards in favor of investors. Joseph was also instrumental in the advocacy before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in the In re Broadcom Corp. Securities Litigation. This appellate victory marked the first occasion a court sustained allegations against an outside auditor related to options backdating.

Prior to founding the firm, Joseph was a Partner of Labaton Sucharow LLP. He also practiced securities litigation at Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossmann LLP, and began his legal career at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP, where he represented Fortune 100 corporations and financial institutions in complex securities litigation, in multifaceted SEC investigations, and at trial.

Joseph is a member of the ABA, the NY State Bar Association, the Bar of the City of New York, and the National Association of Public Pension Attorneys (NAPPA).