Mr. Pollack is widely recognized as one of the preeminent trial lawyers in the country in the conduct of financial litigation, advising corporations on issues of corporate governance and advising executives on employment agreements and exit agreements.
Mr. Pollack received a B.A., magna cum laude, from Harvard College, received an M.A. in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Oxford University and an LL.B. from Harvard Law School. Mr. Pollack served as Managing Partner of McCarter & English’s New York office from 2012-2015 and is now Managing Partner Emeritus, New York.
Mr. Pollack first came to public notice early in his career in a lengthy trial on behalf of institutional commercial paper holders against Goldman Sachs arising out of the collapse of Penn Central. His groundbreaking work in that trial is chronicled in several books published in recent years on Goldman Sachs, including "The Partnership" and “Money and Power.”
Following the Goldman Sachs trial, Mr. Pollack, representing Anchor Corporation, a large New Jersey-based mutual fund company, argued and won, in the Supreme Court of the United States, the landmark case on corporate governance in the mutual fund field, Burks v. Lasker. That case was the first to endorse the use of a Special Committee of Independent Directors as a vehicle for determining the appropriate course of action for a mutual fund company in litigation. Several years later, Mr. Pollack returned to the Supreme Court of the United States, arguing the case of Daily Income Fund v. Fox, another mutual fund litigation.
Mr. Pollack has also been the successful Lead Trial Counsel in three mutual fund advisory fee cases that have been tried to judgment under Section 36 (b) of the Investment Company Act of 1940, including Schuyt v. Rowe Price Prime Reserve Fund (for T. Rowe Price), Kalish v. Franklin Advisors (for Franklin Resources) and Meyer v. Oppenheimer (for Oppenheimer Management). Mr. Pollack was the successful Lead Counsel in Smith v. Franklin Templeton Distributors (for Franklin Distributors), winning a dismissal of the case in June 2010 in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.
In 2005 Mr. Pollack, acting on behalf of J. & W. Seligman, a mutual fund company, challenged New York Attorney General Elliot Spitzer by filing a lawsuit against him for exceeding his authority in the market-timing investigations. At the time of that lawsuit, The Wall Street Journal published an editorial entitled "Man Bites Dog" praising the courage of Seligman and Mr. Pollack for their willingness to stand up to Mr. Spitzer.
In 2010, Mr. Pollack became Lead Trial Counsel for Wells Fargo in a long-pending series of three class actions under the Truth in Lending Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. All three of those cases were successfully resolved in favor of Wells Fargo either by dismissal after trial or by nominal settlement. In 2015, Mr. Pollack succeeded in obtaining an Order of Decertification of a class of 300,000 home loan borrowers in the lead case, Mazzei v. The Money Store et al. after an adverse jury verdict. In 2016, that Order of Decertification, with Mr. Pollack appearing as Lead Counsel, was affirmed by the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The affirmance by the Court of Appeals involved the first ruling by an appellate court on the intersect between Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and the Seventh Amendment to the Constitution.
In 2014, Mr. Pollack, in a prestigious and highly publicized appointment, was named by Judge Thomas P. Griesa, United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York, to serve as Special Master to conduct and preside over settlement negotiations in the litigation between the Republic of Argentina and its bondholders. Early in 2016, Mr. Pollack, as Special Master, succeeded in effecting a $4.65 billion settlement of the 15-year litigation between the Republic of Argentina and its lead “holdout” bondholders. Subsequently, Mr. Pollack presided over settlements between the Republic of Argentina and parties across the globe. In the aggregate, all settlements to date presided over by Mr. Pollack in his role as Special Master approximate over $10 billion.
During the course of his career, Mr. Pollack has tried over 20 civil jury trials to verdict and over 30 non-jury trials. He has appeared as appellate counsel in numerous federal and state appellate courts, is a Member of the Bar of the U.S. Supreme Court and is a Member of the Bar of the First, Second, Third, Fourth, Seventh, Ninth and Eleventh Circuits. He was elected a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers in 1985. Representative corporate litigation clients have included T. Rowe Price Associates, Franklin-Templeton, AIM, Fidelity, Wells Fargo Bank, UBS Asset Management, PNC Advisors, PNC Bank N.A., J. & W. Seligman and AMERIPRISE.
Another aspect of his practice since 1990 has focused on representing senior corporate executives or corporations in exit and entry negotiations and agreements. In this context, he has advised the CEO of Putnam, the CEO of Rockefeller & Co, the CEO of Dresdner Kleinwort and the CEO of HSBC, among others. Mr. Pollack taught a seminar for 7 years as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Arizona Law School, entitled “Negotiating Employment Agreements.” He is named in the 2008-2020 issues of The Best Lawyers in America
and is also named in the 2006-2015 issues of New York Super Lawyers
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Mr. Pollack chairs the American Art Committee of the Harvard Art Museums.
Mr. Pollack is married to Susan First Pollack, a graduate of Radcliffe College and Harvard Law School. Mr. and Mrs. Pollack have two adult children: a son who is a graduate of Haverford College and the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University and a daughter who is a graduate of Harvard College, and has a degree in neuroscience from Oxford University, England and a degree from the Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.