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Jake Bielema is a partner in the litigation department concentrating on securities and corporate litigation, as well as commercial litigation. He has had significant experience representing clients in the defense of securities fraud class actions, including underwriters, issuers and individual defendants. Mr. Bielema also has significant experience defending directors and officers of failed banks from claims asserted by the FDIC. Additionally, Mr. Bielema has extensive experience defending shareholder derivative actions, dissenter's rights proceedings, tender offer litigation, SEC investigations, bondholder litigation, director and officer liability litigation, adversary proceedings in bankruptcy court and many other forms of corporate litigation. Mr. Bielema has also defended RICO class actions and FINRA arbitrations. Mr. Bielema is an experienced commercial litigator and is on the editorial board of the American Bar Association's Business and Commercial Litigation Committee. He also has experience with jury trials and with both binding arbitration and mediation. In addition to his experience as a litigator, Mr. Bielema also regularly advises directors and officers of corporations, including financial institutions, regarding the nature and proper discharge of their fiduciary duties.

In 2007, Mr. Bielema was elected as a board member of the Litigation Section of the Atlanta Bar Association. He served as chair of the section in 2012-2013. He is the co-founder of the Securities and Corporate Litigation sub-section of the Atlanta Bar Association's litigation section, and, until 2012, served as that organization's co-chair. He is also the co-chair of the American Bar Association's Corporate and Securities Litigation sub-committee of the Litigation Section's Commercial and Business Litigation Section. He is active in the American Bar Association's Litigation Section Securities Litigation Committee. He has served since 2005 on the Executive Committee of the Federal Bar Association's Atlanta Chapter and was Chapter President for the 2010-2011 year. He frequently presents on issues relating to key securities litigation and director and officer liability issues.

Mr. Bielema has been quoted on issues relating to securities litigation and regulation in many publications including The Wall Street Journal, CNN Money, The National Law Journal, Securities Law 360, The Toronto Star, Lawyers Weekly, Bank and Lenders Liability Reporter, Andrew's Securities Litigation Reporter, Compliance Weekly, and Compliance and Regulatory Newsletter. He has written numerous articles and client alerts on issues relating to securities regulation and SEC enforcement issues. He has spoken and given presentations to Boards of Directors and in-house counsel on important developments in securities and corporate litigation. Mr. Bielema also is active in the community and has worked for years with The Boys and Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta as a member at large and, more recently, as a member of the Fulton County Board of Directors.

Civic Involvement & Honors

    • Georgia Super Lawyer (2009 - 2016)
    • Georgia Rising Star (2005 & 2007)
    • Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta – Resource Development Committee
    • University of Michigan Alumni Association of Atlanta – Director and Membership and Communications Chair
    • Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Atlanta – Resource Development Committee
    • University of Michigan Alumni Association of Atlanta – Director and Membership and Communications Chair
    • University of Michigan Alumni Association of Atlanta – Director and Membership and Communications Chair
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Professional Affiliations

    • Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America
    • American Bar Foundation – Fellow; Business Law Section; Class Action and Derivative Suits Subcommittee; Litigation Section: Commercial and Business Litigation Committee, Editorial Board, Securities and Corporate Litigation Subcommittee, Co-chair; Securities Litigation Subcommittee; Section of Business Law, Federal Regulation of Securities Committee; Director and Officer Liability Task Force – Member
    • Atlanta Bar Association – Litigation Section, Secretary and Board Member
    • Securities & Corporate Litigation Subsection – Atlanta Bar Association Litigation Section, Co-chair and Co-founder
    • Federal Bar Association – Atlanta Chapter, Immediate Past President
    • Lamar Inn of Court – Master
    • State Bar of Georgia – Business Law and Trial Section
    • Securities & Corporate Litigation Subsection – Atlanta Bar Association Litigation Section, Co-chair and Co-founder
    • Federal Bar Association – Atlanta Chapter, Immediate Past President
    • Lamar Inn of Court – Master
    • State Bar of Georgia – Business Law and Trial Section
    • Lamar Inn of Court – Master
    • State Bar of Georgia – Business Law and Trial Section
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Representative Experience

Representative matters:

  • Representation of several boards of directors and officers of failed and/or distressed banks in connection with possible or actual claims by the FDIC as receiver
  • Representation of a major U.S. broker dealer in a purported class action for breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty - dismissed by district court
  • Representation of a U.S. broker dealer in a RICO class action and related FINRA arbitrations - favorably resolved
  • Representation of a utility company in a suit by a shareholder seeking to enjoin a merger transaction - case was dismissed
  • Representation of the Selling shareholders in multimillion dollar suit for alleged breaches of representations and warranties in the merger agreement - resolved on very favorable terms in 2009
  • Representation of the issuer in In Re World Health Alternatives Securities Litigation, United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
  • Representation of the Chairman of the Board of a major corporation, and former CEO of a Fortune 200 company in connection with a multi-billion dollar litigation pending in the United States Bankruptcy Court 
  • Representation of 3 underwriter defendants in In Re: AFC Securities Litigation, US District Court for the Northern District of Georgia
  • Representation of Viacom Outdoor, Inc. in Viacom Outdoor, Inc. v Van Wagner Communications, LLC, Superior Court of Los Angeles County, State of California 
  • Representation of Coventry Health Care in shareholder securities class action Roffe v First Health et al, in the Chancery Court of Cook County, State of Illinois
  • Representation of Reliance Trust Company and SouthTrust Bank in a $28 million bondholders class action, obtaining denial of class certification and dismissal of case, affirmed on appeal to the Eleventh Circuit
  • Representation of targets of numerous SEC, FINRA, and other regulatory investigations and enforcement actions
  • Representation of an energy company in a suit by a group of shareholders to block a merger transaction under Delaware law - case was dismissed and upheld on appeal
  • Representation of Lodgian Hotels, Inc. in an action asserting claims under Section 10(B) and Rule 10b-5 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
  • Representation of Metromedia, Inc. and Metromedia directors in securities class action litigation, bankruptcy adversary proceedings and bankruptcy subordination proceedings
  • Representation of underwriter defendants in In Re: Longhorn Securities Litigation
  • Representation of Level 8 Systems, Inc. in an appraisal proceeding in Delaware Chancery Court
  • Representation of a major financial institution in internal investigation in response to two shareholder derivative demands
  • Representation of the issuer and directors of IQ Software Corporation in IQ Software Securities Litigation, US District Court for the Northern District of Georgia

Publications

  • Client Alert: "U.S. Supreme Court Limits Ability of Class Action Defendants to 'Pick Off' Named Plaintiffs," January 21, 2016
  • Client Alert: "Securities Defendants Will Have New Tool To Use In Opposing Class Certification But Fraud-On-The-Market Theory Survives Under Supreme Court Decision," June 2014; co-authored with Eric Rieder
  • “Should Banks settle when they are hit with an M & A lawsuit”?, Bank Director, March 19, 2014
  • Numerous summaries of FDIC actions against directors and officers of failed banks on BankBryanCave.com
  • "Court Dismisses Failed Bank Investor Class Action; Signals Obstacles for Plaintiffs in Similar Cases," BankBryanCave.com, January 19, 2011
  • "SEC vs. Goldman Sachs: The Government Fraud Action Against A Wall Street Giant," ABA Journal of Commercial & Business Litigation, Volume II, No. 3, Summer 2010, with Michael P. Carey
  • "The Corporate Entity as Protection From Liability: Piercing the Corporate Veil in Georgia", Georgia ICLE Seminar Materials, March 12, 2009
  • "Recent Corporate Litigation Regarding Private Equity Transactions," Georgia Corporate and Business Organization Litigation Seminar, November 16, 2007; co-authored by Daniel Ashburn and Jason Curles
  • "Supreme Court to Hear Significant Case on "Secondary Liability" For Securities Fraud," The Business Suit, The Defense Research Institute, June 2007
  • "Behind The Court's Decision in Merrill Lynch vs. Dabit," Securities Law 360, March 30, 2006
  • "Securities 'Holder' Class Actions: The Supreme Court Takes a Close Look In 2006," BNA Securities Regulation and Law Reporter, Volume 38 Number 8, Page 293, Feb. 20, 2006
  • "Class Action Lawsuits Over Class Action Settlement Funds: Are Your Clients at Risk?," ABA Journal of Commercial and Business Litigation, Vol. 7, No. 1, Fall 2005; co-authored by Daniel Ashburn
  • "Ethical Implications of Electronic Metadata in Documents," ABA Journal of Commercial and Business Litigation, Vol. 7, No. 1, Fall 2005
  • "The Dangers of Electronic Discovery: Lessons from Morgan Stanley," The Corporate Counselor, July 2005
  • Client Alert: "The Loss Causation Element of Securities Fraud and the Supreme Court's Dura Pharmaceuticals Opinion," April 20, 2005
  • Client Alert: "Supreme Court Declines to Hear Appeal of Decision that Significantly Weakens the Safe Harbor Protection of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995," April 8, 2005
  • "Recent Decisions Find State Holding Claims Viable," National Law Journal, March 14, 2005
  • Client Alert: "New Lawsuits Against Mutual Funds Highlight Fiduciary Duties of Institutional Investors," February 2005
  • Client Alert: "Supreme Court of Georgia Establishes A Standard for "Willful" Conduct Under the Georgia Securities Act," February 2005
  • "State Law Securities "Holding" Claims and SLUSA Preemption," ABA Securities Litigation Journal, Volume 15, No. 1, Fall 2004
  • "Recent Developments in Securities "Holding Claim" Cases," presented at 8th Annual ICLE Corporate Litigation Seminar, Nov. 19, 2004
  • Client Alert: "Attorney Client Privilege May Be Lost Through Communications With Accountants," March 2003
  • Client Alert: "SEC Brings First Regulation FD Enforcement Actions," January 2003
  • Client Alert: "Regulation FD and Selective Disclosure Issues," October 2000
  • Client Alert: "A Summary of the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act of 1998"
  • White Paper: "A Summary of the Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995"
  • "Coverage For Commercial Torts Under Advertising Injury and Personal Injury Liability Provisions of CGL Policies," Georgia Defense Lawyers Journal

Speaking Engagements

  • Presenter, "Duties to Creditors in a Bank Holding Company Bankruptcy”, Georgia Bankers Association Town Hall Meeting, August 6, 2014
  • Moderator, “Recent Supreme Court Developments in Securities Litigation”, May 8, 2014
  • Moderator, In House Counsel Panel Discussion, Federal Bar Association Event, May 6, 2011
  • Moderator, "Relationship between Lawyers and Judges in the Age of Technology", Georgia Roundtable Discussion, Eleventh Circuit Judicial Conference, Orlando, FL April 28, 2011
  • "Issues in Internal Investigations," Bryan Cave In-House CLE Seminar, February 26, 2010
  • "Piercing the Corporate/LLC Veil," Workouts, turnarounds and Restructurings, Georgia ICLE Seminar, State Bar of Georgia, March 12, 2009
  • "Life After Enron: An Overview of Securities and Corporate Litigation and Recent Developments," Litigation Section, Atlanta Bar Association, Featured Speaker, March 9, 2007
  • "The Role of Outside Counsel in Internal Investigations," Georgia Certified Fraud Examiner Conference, Panelist, Sept. 29, 2006
  • "Pleading and Proving Loss Causation Post Dura Pharmaceuticals," ABA Teleconference, Moderator, Dec. 13, 2005
  • "Current Hot Topics in Securities Litigation," Federal Bar Association, Moderator, Oct. 27, 2005