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Bard Brockman is a partner in the Atlanta office of Bryan Cave, LLP, and is the leader of the firm’s ERISA Litigation practice. He typically represents employers, plan sponsors, plan administrators, individual fiduciaries, and independent trust companies. He has broad experience in handling class actions, fiduciary claims, prohibited transaction claims, benefits claims, ESOP and stock valuation disputes, subrogation claims, and government investigations.

Mr. Brockman also represents financial institutions in complex commercial and consumer disputes. On the consumer side, Mr. Brockman has handled cases involving alleged violations of the Truth in Lending Act (TILA), the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), in addition to the other consumer lending statutes and regulations.

Mr. Brockman is a 1989 honors graduate of the University of Florida College of Law, and he is admitted to practice in Georgia and Florida.

Civic Involvement & Honors

    • Georgia Super Lawyer (2007)
    • Super Lawyer (Corporate Counsel Edition, 2008)
    • Who's Who Legal (ERISA, 2007)
    • Leadership DeKalb – Class of 2005
    • University of Florida College of Law Alumni Council
    • Florida Blue Key
    • Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church
    • Leadership DeKalb – Class of 2005
    • University of Florida College of Law Alumni Council
    • Florida Blue Key
    • Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church
    • Florida Blue Key
    • Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church
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Professional Affiliations

    • American Bar Association – Litigation and Labor and Employment Sections
    • State Bar of Georgia – General Practice/Trial and Employee Benefits Sections
    • The Florida Bar – Out-of-State Practitioners Division, Former President (2 terms)
    • Atlanta Bar Association – Litigation Section, and Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Committee
    • Logan E. Bleckley American Inn of Court – Barrister
    • Worldwide Employee Benefits Network (WEB)
    • Atlanta Benefits Council (ASPPA)
    • Southern Employee Benefits Conference (SEBC)
    • Atlanta Bar Association – Litigation Section, and Employee Benefits & Executive Compensation Committee
    • Logan E. Bleckley American Inn of Court – Barrister
    • Worldwide Employee Benefits Network (WEB)
    • Atlanta Benefits Council (ASPPA)
    • Southern Employee Benefits Conference (SEBC)
    • Atlanta Benefits Council (ASPPA)
    • Southern Employee Benefits Conference (SEBC)
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Representative Experience

Mr. Brockman's recent representations include:

  • Obtained summary judgment (and an award of attorneys’ fees) for an independent trust company on claims for breach of fiduciary duty and violations of ERISA
  • Obtained summary judgment for a company-sponsored ESOP and its trustees on claims for violation of ERISA's Anti-Cutback and Significant Detriment Rules, and successfully defended ruling on appeal
  • Obtained dismissal of professional negligence claim against independent trust company
  • Negotiated a favorable settlement for a professional ESOP trustee that had been sued for breach of fiduciary duty and prohibited transaction under ERISA
  • Prosecuted a defendant class action for a Fortune 100 client as trustee of pension funds subject to competing claims of its unionized workers
  • Negotiated a favorable class action settlement for a large public university that had been sued by former employees in a suit to recover early retirement benefits
  • Negotiated a substantial subrogation recovery for a company-sponsored medical plan in connection with a medical malpractice suit brought by a plan beneficiary
  • Successfully tried a factually complex garnishment case involving claims of corporate "alter ego" and "piercing the corporate veil"
  • Successfully defended a major insurance company in an arbitration matter on severance and change-in-control claims brought by a former executive
  • Successfully defended a computer services company in a lengthy arbitration involving a purchase price adjustment based on a complicated earn-out formula
  • Obtained summary judgment for a major telecommunications corporation in three separate actions in which former contractors asserted claims for fraud and racial discrimination
  • Successfully defended a major home building company in arbitration claims for extra-contractual damages
  • Successfully prosecuted an action to quiet title to a parcel of real property at the heart of a mall development project in metro Atlanta
  • Negotiated a complex settlement of an action for equitable partitioning of a 300-acre parcel of prime real property in the mountains of north Georgia
  • Tried a claim for prescriptive easement concerning the historical use of a right-of-way to gain access to a landlocked parcel of land in Atlanta's Buckhead business district
  • Successfully negotiated several substantial settlements in preference actions in connection with the Chapter 11 bankruptcy of a major consumer products retailer

Publications

  • “ESOP Litigation On The Rise: What Do Business Valuations Have To Do With It?” National Litigation Consultants’ Review (Vol. 1, 2014)
  • “Revisiting Hardt: The Developing Law on the Recovery of Attorneys’ Fees Under ERISA Section 502(g)(1);” Journal of Pension Benefits (Vol. 20, No. 2, Winter 2013)
  • Litigation Editor for the Journal of Pension Benefits 
  • Contributing editor to BNA’s Employee Benefits Law treatise (3rd ed. 2012)
  • Contributing editor to BNA’s Employee Benefits Law treatise (2nd ed. 2000) (annual supplements)

Speaking Engagements

  • “Navigating the Aftermath of Cigna v. Amara: The Ongoing Fallout From this Landmark Case and Its Progeny and the Impact on Remedies in ERISA Cases,” ACI 6th National Forum on ERISA Litigation, October 2013
  • “‘Appropriate Equitable Relief’ Post-McCutchen,” ALI CLE webinar, May 2013
  • "Advising Bank Board Directors on Regulatory Relations and Legal Risk Minimization," Georgia ICLE Banking and Finance Law seminar, February 2013
  • "ERISA Litigation: An Update on Recent Cases and Activity," Southern Employee Benefits Conference (SEBC), April 2012
  • "Attorneys Fees Under ERISA After Hardt v. Reliance Standard," American Bar Association Employee Benefits Committee 2011 Midwinter Meeting
  • "ERISA Preemption: Countering Plaintiffs' Attempts to Overcome the Procedural and Substantive Aspects of the Defense," ACI Conference on ERISA Litigation, October 2010
  • "Analyzing Plan Remedies and the Scope of Equitable Remedies," ACI Conference on ERISA Litigation, October 2009
  • "Responding to Benefit Claims and Avoiding ERISA Litigation," Worldwide Employee Benefits (WEB), Atlanta Chapter, June 2009
  • "Supreme Court Developments in ERISA," Bryan Cave Labor & Employment Conference, May 2009
  • "Fiduciary Roles in the Era of Change," Southern Employee Benefits Conference (SEBC), May 2009
  • "Implications of the Supreme Court's Decision in LaRue," Fiduciary Risk Management webinar, April 2008
  • "Keep It Short: Brevity in Legal Writing," Georgia Legal Services live seminar and webinar, July 2007
  • "ADR in Corporate Transactions: A Critical Analysis," Georgia Business Law Institute, October 2001