The Daily Journal has named Lieff Cabraser partner Katherine Lubin Benson a “Top 40 Under 40” attorney for 2020. Katie is one of 40 outstanding lawyers in California under the age of 40 to be recognized with this prestigious award.

The Journal highlights Katie’s achievements in an in-depth profile, focusing on her active involvement in Antitrust and Securities Fraud litigation. Katie and the LCHB team recently filed a new case seeking to hold accountable the current and former directors and officers of The Boeing Co. for their alleged failure to monitor the safety of the company’s 737 Max airplanes, leading to what the complaint describes as “an epochal corporate governance catastrophe” that led to two major plane crashes. In August 2020, Lieff Cabraser was named co-lead counsel for the plaintiffs in the litigation. Judge Bouchard’s decision formally consolidated four of the five shareholder suits, with Lieff Cabraser Heimann & Bernstein LLP and Friedlander & Gorris PA as co-lead counsel for the plaintiffs. It came about a week after a July 30 telephone hearing over the leadership issue.

Previously, Katie and the Lieff Cabraser team won success for shareholders in April 2020 when it achieved a $240 million settlement with Wells Fargo & Co. after asserting claims arising from the bank’s illicit sales practices scandal. In re Wells Fargo & Co. Shareholder Derivative Litigation, 3:16-cv-05541 (N.D. Cal., filed Sept. 29, 2016). “Our investigation there showed Wells Fargo encouraged its sales people to open as many accounts as possible without customer knowledge or consent, and it turned out the CEO admitted that he had talked about it with the board,” Ms. Benson noted. “When the trial judge held that we had successfully pled our Caremark claim, and after we showed we were ready to take the case to trial, they settled.”

Katie said her firm “focuses on what corporate scandals involve breaches of fiduciary duty, and Boeing and Wells Fargo are examples of boards of directors that look the other way when they should be nipping things in the bud as a matter of good corporate governance.”

Congratulations, Katie! 

About Katherine Lubin Benson

A partner in Lieff Cabraser’s San Francisco office, Katherine Lubin Benson specializes in securities and derivative suits and antitrust class actions. In her Securities Fraud practice, she was one of the firm’s lead attorneys in the shareholder derivative action against Wells Fargo’s current and former officers and directors arising from the illicit sales practices scandal. Katherine was a key member of Lieff Cabraser team representing Co-Lead Plaintiff Fire and Police Pension Association of Colorado in the action, which settled for a $240 million cash payment and corporate governance reforms in late 2018. The settlement received final approval in April 2020, and represents the largest insurer-funded derivative settlement in history.

In her Antitrust practice, Katherine served as Class Counsel representing a class of hospitals, third-party payors, and uninsured persons in 29 states and the District of Columbia in an antitrust action against defendants Momenta Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Sandoz Inc. for their alleged monopolization of enoxaparin, the generic version of the anti-coagulant blood clotting drug Lovenox. The case resulted in a nationwide settlement totaling $120 million, making it the second largest indirect purchaser antitrust pharmaceutical settlement fund in history.

Katherine currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Northern District Practice Program, which provides continuing legal education programing for judges and practitioners in the district. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the East Bay Community Law Center, a non-profit affiliated with Berkeley Law providing free legal services to low-income communities.

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