D&G Law

Institutional Securities cases: Partial List

Photo of attorney Tammy Stokes at her deskGuin Stokes & Evans, LLC attorneys have been representing institutional investors for decades. We understand the unique trading requirements and interests of institutional investors. We can monitor your portfolios to insure that you are properly represented when accounting scandals strike. If appropriate, we can represent you in securities litigation; alternatively, we can monitor pending litigation to be sure your rights are protected.

Examples of our institutional investor cases include:

Alabama Securities Commission v. Morgan Keegan, et al (2011).  Guin Stokes & Evans, LLC was appointed by the Governor and Attorney General of the State of Alabama to represent the Alabama Securities Commission in litigation against various parties affiliated with Regions Financial Corp., Morgan Keegan, and Morgan Asset Management for claims arising out of the sale of certain proprietary RMK mutual funds. The Alabama Securities Commission led a 13-state task force, in coordination with the SEC and FINRA, which ultimately led to an aggregate $210+ million recovery (plus industry bars, fines and penalties).

In re HealthSouth Securities Litigation (N.D. Ala. 2007-2010) The Retirement Systems of Alabama was Lead Plaintiff for a certified class of mostly institutional purchasers of HealthSouth corporate bonds. David Guin & Tammy Stokes served as Liaison Counsel for RSA and the other institutional bond investors and were appointed by the federal judge overseeing the litigation to represent all bond investors on the Federal HealthSouth Steering Committee. A $445 Million class action settlement on behalf of both stock and bond investors was reached in 2007 with HealthSouth, certain of its former directors and officers, and certain of its insurance carriers. Bondholder Plaintiffs in 2010 obtained additional settlements with UBS Warburg (the Company’s investment bankers) for $100 million, and with Ernst & Young (the Company’s auditors) for $33.5 million. The total recovery for bond investors now stands at about $230 million, with potentially more to come through pending derivative litigation.

Judge Karon Bowdre, United States District Judge for the Northern District of Alabama, said the following about Donaldson & Guin, LLC and their co-counsel when certifying their case on behalf of the Retirement Systems of Alabama to proceed as a class action:

Bondholder Plaintiffs’ counsel are also qualified, experienced and able to vigorously conduct the proposed litigation. Bondholder Plaintiffs’ counsel have extensive experience in securities and class action litigation and have successfully prosecuted numerous complex actions on behalf of injured investors across the country. In the six years since these consolidated cases were filed, Bondholder Plaintiffs’ counsel have filed an initial and two amended complaints, defended a series of motions to dismiss and motions for summary judgment brought by various Defendants and based on complex legal theories under the federal securities laws, and conducted extensive discovery. Moreover, counsel negotiated a successful partial [$445 million aggregate] settlement with HealthSouth and certain former officers and directors of the Company. Bondholder Plaintiffs’ counsel have vigorously prosecuted this litigation and will continue to do so. The court finds that the class representatives and their counsel will “adequately prosecute” this case. Memorandum Opinion Certifying Bondholder Class, at 19 (Sept. 30, 2009)

In a later hearing approving $133.5 million in additional settlements, Judge Bowdre contrasted the work of Donaldson & Guin, LLC and their co-counsel with that of counsel in some other complex cases she had overseen, explaining:

And I just want to commend all of you for the way that you have conducted the case. … [Bondholder Counsel] have proved to me that there are ways to conduct complex litigation with lots of lawyers involved and to do so in a professional manner. And I appreciate that very much. Transcript of July 22, 2010 fairness hearing, at 55:2-13.

Sears Roebuck Bond Redemption. Guin Stokes & Evans represented a major insurance company with a substantial investment in Sears Roebuck bonds that were prematurely redeemed.

In re Just For Feet” Securities Litigation (N.D. Ala.) Guin Stokes & Evans represented a large shareholder who had sold a chain of shoe stores to Just-For-Feet in exchange for JFF stock.  When the JFF scandal broke and the stock price collapsed, we sued. The case was settled for a confidential sum.

Photo of attorney David Guin at his deskThe Employees Retirement System of Alabama, et al. v. The May Dept. Stores Co., (Circuit Court of Montgomery County, Alabama, 92-CV-2726-R). David Guin was one of the plaintiffs’ counsel in this action on behalf of group of institutional holders of over $240 million of debentures, including the Retirement Systems of Alabama, CalPERS, the New York State Common Retirement Fund, and similar funds of the States of Washington and Montana, as well as insurance companies, mutual funds and other investors, for wrongful redemption; See “Corporate Issuers Use Bluff-and-Threat Call Gambit,” The Wall Street Journal, Nov. 2, 1992; “May Stores Named in Suit on Bond Calls,” The Wall Street Journal, Dec. 15, 1992; “STACked Deck; Bondholders Get Tough Over Tender Deal,” by Ben Stein, Barrons, June 21, 1993, at 14-15; “STACing the Deck on Bondholders,” Corporate Finance, June 1993, at 26-29; and number other articles pertaining to refunding of “nonrefundable” bonds.

In re Bank One Secs. Litig., No. 00 CV 00767 (N.D. Ill.). Charles Watkins was Lead Counsel in this action under Sections 11 and 12 of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 14 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, which resulted in a settlement of $120 million for shareholders, at the time the second-largest securities settlement ever in the Seventh Circuit.

In re Phar-Mor, Inc., Sec. Litig., No. MDL 959 (W.D. Pa.). Charles Watkins represented institutional investors in this multi-district case involving federal and state claims arising out of massive accounting fraud. Settlement under seal.

United Municipal High Income Bond Fund v. Patriots Point Development Authority. David Guin was Lead Class Counsel representing a mutual fund and other institutional and non-institution investors in this class action filed on behalf of purchasers of tax exempt municipal bonds. This case established significant precedent regarding the scope of contribution bar orders. See 772 F. Supp. 1565 (D. S.C. 1991).

The South Carolina National Bank v. Stone (Skylyn Hall Retirement Center municipal bonds), 139 F.R.D. 325 (D. S.C. 1991); 139 F.R.D. 335 (D. S.C. 1991); 749 F.Supp. 1419 (D. S.C. 1990); see related article at “An Expensive Free Lunch,” Forbes (Jan. 25, 1988).  David Guin and David Donaldson represented the indenture trustee bank as lead plaintiff on behalf of a class of investors in this case involving defaulted tax-exempt municipal bonds.