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Howard E. Cotton

Partner
howard.cotton@kattenlaw.com
New York Office
p+1.212.940.8855
f+1.212.894.5855
Overview

Howard E. Cotton has more than 30 years of extensive experience in major commercial litigation, regularly acting as lead counsel in trials and appeals in state and federal courts in New York and throughout the US, as well as in numerous arbitration and mediation proceedings. He has also served in many leadership roles within the firm and outside, including on Katten's National Executive Committee, Compensation Committee, Board of Directors and as National Co-Chair of Commercial Litigation.

Howard's varied litigation practice encompasses virtually all types of business disputes spanning numerous industries, and covers a broad spectrum of issues, including breach of contract, business torts, Uniform Commercial Code, partnership and corporate shareholder disputes, real estate, securities and common law fraud, and breach of fiduciary duty.

Howard's diverse clients include leading financial institutions, such as investment banks, hedge funds, public and private companies and their senior officers, foreign governments, trade associations, high net-worth families, entrepreneurs, and investors. He also has substantial experience in real estate litigation, representing developers, management and hospitality companies, and banks.

Shown below is a selection of Howard’s engagements.

Experience
  • Representation of overseas companies named as defendants in a federal court "claw back" litigation action arising out of an alleged $550 million Ponzi scheme with related overseas proceedings.
  • Representation of the trustee of multimillion-dollar inter vivos trusts in litigations arising out of a highly contentious trust dispute between members of a wealthy real estate family.
Commercial Litigation for Real Estate Clients
  • Successful representation of a hotel fund in numerous litigations exceeding $100 million in alleged damages incurred in connection with the acquisition and development of various hotel properties.
  • Successful representation of a leading real estate company against claims of trade name infringement.
  • Successful representation of a leading real estate company in a dispute with foreign hotel operators regarding overseas hotel development.
  • Successful representation of a real estate fund in connection with disputes arising out of its acquisition of various luxury resort properties.
  • Successful representation of one of the largest real estate owners in New York City in connection with its insurance coverage action for more than $75 million in business interruption and property damage losses incurred by client as a result of the events of September 11.
  • Successful representation of the owners and operators of an exclusive Caribbean resort in litigation regarding fiduciary breach and fraud.
Financial Services Litigation and Counseling
  • Provision of regular advice and representation of hedge funds, funds of funds and their personnel in connection with litigation, conflict avoidance and risk analysis.
  • Successful representation of a hedge fund in arbitration seeking to protect "track record" information and other confidential information and to enforce restrictive covenants.
  • Successful representation of a leading hedge fund against claims by a former partner seeking, inter alia, deferred compensation.
  • Successful representation of a leading hedge fund in obtaining insurance coverage for defense costs incurred in regulatory investigation and administrative proceeding.
  • Successful representation of a leading private equity fund in connection with the enforcement of a $50 million guarantee securing loans for real estate development in various jurisdictions.
  • Successful representation of a multibillion-dollar hedge fund in connection with investigations and enforcement proceedings commenced by the SEC, the US Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York and the CFTC.
  • Successful representation of an investment bank in a dispute over warrants and allegations of fiduciary breach in connection with an initial public offering.
  • Successful representation of the managing members of hedge funds and investment managers in partnership disputes and accounting proceedings.
  • Successful representation of the principal of an Internet financial services company in connection with an internal corporate dispute.
General Business Litigation
  • Successful representation of a software manufacturer in nationwide litigations and arbitration regarding the manufacturer's right to terminate agreements with local distributors and to preclude these local distributors from using the manufacturer's proprietary software to provide "technical support" to existing customers.
  • Successful representation of an international commodities trader in a litigation with a foreign government involving in excess of $25 million in governmental guarantees, as well as in multi-venue disputes relating to shipments of goods and letters of credit.
  • Successful representation of corporate directors against allegations of fiduciary breach arising from sale of the company.
  • Successful representation of the acquirers of a publicly traded company against claims of fraud and fiduciary breach.
  • Successful representation of the heirs of a West Coast family in a $100 million estate arbitration.
Lender Liability Litigation
  • Successful representation of a foreign government in connection with its default on an $11 million bank loan incurred for the purpose of building a luxury hotel resort.
  • Successful representation of a leading private equity fund in various jurisdictions to enforce guarantees of multimillion-dollar building mortgage loans.
  • Successful representation of a real estate lender against allegations of breach of contract and tortious misconduct arising out of the lender's alleged "breach" of a term sheet regarding a proposed $850 million loan.
  • Successful representation of a real estate lender against claims of breach of contract and tortious misconduct arising out of lender's pre-closing modification of draft loan documents and borrower's attempt to compel lender to close transaction consistent with terms of non-binding financing agreement.
  • Representation of a real estate lender being sued by an investor alleging breach of contract and tortious interference claims premised on lender's alleged refusal to allocate to the investor $150 million of a billion-dollar term loan facility.

Recognition

Super Lawyers, 2011–2017

Who's Who in the World

Who's Who in the World, 2011

Who's Who in America

Who's Who in America, 2011

Who's Who in American Law

Who's Who in American Law, 2011
Howard E. Cotton

Education

  • JD, Fordham University School of Law
  • AB, Cornell University

Bar Admissions

  • New York

Court Admissions

  • US District Court, Eastern District of New York
  • US District Court, Northern District of New York
  • US Court of Appeals, Second Circuit
  • US District Court, Southern District of New York

Recognition

Super Lawyers
2011–2017

Who's Who in the World

2011

Who's Who in America

2011

Who's Who in American Law

2011
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Memberships

  • Federal Bar Council
  • Association of the Bar of the City of New York
  • New York County Lawyers' Association
  • New York State Bar Association, Civil Practice Law and Rules Committee
  • Southern District Court of New York, Alternative Dispute Resolution Panel of Mediators
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