Charlotte E. Thomas practices in the area of complex business litigation. Ms. Thomas views commercial litigation as an offshoot of business and crafts litigation strategies that are tailored to the specific needs of the client. Her practice promotes client involvement and control over litigation strategy and goals. Ms. Thomas has an active mediation practice that complements her emphasis on cost-effective solutions to business disputes.
Ms. Thomas represents parties in securities actions, broker-dealer and financial advisor arbitrations, lender liability actions, directors and officers actions, intellectual property lawsuits, environmental and toxic tort actions, actions under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, and the defense of class actions. She has represented receivers of insolvent financial institutions and insurance companies in investigations of and litigation involving directors and officers malfeasance, legal malpractice, accounting malpractice, appraiser malpractice, fraud, borrower fraud, asset recovery litigation, claims litigation, and related matters. She also has represented the liquidator of insurers in various specialty representations arising out of the liquidation estate, including asset recovery, direct access to reinsurance, large deductible reimbursements, and proofs of claim. Ms. Thomas has served as lead trial counsel in numerous jury and nonjury trials and in arbitrations in venues through the country.
Ms. Thomas has authored a number of articles about the practice of law, as well as several scholarly law review articles. She writes blog entries for the Legal Intelligencer.
Ms. Thomas is a 1984 cum laude graduate of Vermont Law School, where she was business editor of the Vermont Law Review and a member of the Moot Court Advisory Board, and a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania (M.C.P.) and Union College (B.A., cum laude).
· Obtained summary judgment in the United States District Court for the Central District of California on two defenses (release and negligent claims handling) in a complex large deductible reimbursement lawsuit.
· In re Pemaquid Underwriting Brokerage, Inc., 319 B.R. 824 (Bankr. D.N.J. 2005). Represented the liquidator of an insurance company in the alternative insurance market in a dispute in bankruptcy regarding rights to imprest funds.
· FDIC v. Kolea, 92 F.3d 1170 (3d Cir. 1996). Obtained judgment at trial for the receiver of a federally-chartered thrift from developers in a troubled development, which judgment was affirmed on appeal.
· Obtained defense award for a financial advisor in consumer arbitration.
· Represented financial institutions in defense of class actions in various states.
· Investigated professional liability claims on behalf of receivers of failed financial institutions.
· Boykin v. Siena House, 464 F. Supp. 2d 416 (M.D. Pa. 2006). Obtained judgment for a defendant in a 42 USC § 1983 action alleging discrimination on religious grounds.
Areas of Practice
· Commercial Litigation
· Securities Litigation
· Broker-Dealer Litigation
· Class Action Litigation
· Consumer Litigation
· Alternative Dispute Resolution
· Insurance and Financial Institutions Insolvencies
· Duane Morris LLP
- Partner, 2009-present
· WolfBlock LLP, 1995-2009
- Partner, 1997-2009
· Mannino Griffith PC, 1994-1995
· Resolution Trust Corporation, 1992-1994
· Klehr Harrison Harvey Branzburg & Ellers, 1988-1992
· Gratz Tate Spiegel Ervin & Ruthrauff, 1984-1988
· American Bar Association
· Pennsylvania Bar Association
· Philadelphia Bar Association
- Member, Federal Courts Committee
· New Jersey Bar Association
· Lecturer at Law, Tax Moot Court, Rutgers Law School
Honors and Awards
· AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
Civic and Charitable Activities
· Ardmore Free Library
- Board of Trustees, 2012-present
· Friends Child Care Center
- Officer, Board of Directors, 1992-1996
Publications and Speaking Engagements
· "Whose Defense is it, Anyway - Consent to Settlement Clauses Under Babcock & Wilcox v. American Nuclear Insurers," Duane Morris Insurance Blog, August 29, 2013
· "Isolation as a Strategy in Mediation," The Legal Intelligencer Blog, June 27, 2013
· "New Commonwealth Court Rules for Insurance Rehabilitations and Liquidations," The Legal Intelligencer Blog, January 8, 2013
· "Is There An Ethical Duty to Convey Offers to Mediate?," The Legal Intelligencer Blog, April 20, 2012
· "So You're Telling Me There's a Chance: Assessing the Likelihood of Compelling Arbitration in Federal Court," The Legal Intelligencer Blog, February 10, 2012
· "The 2011 Edmund N. Bacon Prize and Student Design Competition," The Legal Intelligencer Blog, January 18, 2012
· "Mandatory Mediation Clauses: Can You Make the Horse Drink?" The Legal Intelligencer Blog, December 12, 2011
· "The Quick Fix: Can Settlement be Reached at a Three-Hour Mediation," Legal Intelligencer Blog, October 28, 2011
· Co-author, "Turning Full Circle: Seeking Reimbursement of Insurer Advances for Large Deductibles," Bloomberg Law Reports - Commercial Insurance, October 3, 2011
· "The Zen of Mediation: A Conversation with Mediator Jeff Kichaven," Legal Intelligencer, August 16, 2011
· "Exploring Early Settlements: A Sign of Weakness or Ethical Duty," Legal Intelligencer Blog, July 6, 2011
· "Mediation: Early and Often for Cost-Effective Litigation," Legal Intelligencer Blog, June 10, 2011; reprinted in City Bar Center for Continuing Legal Education, New York City Bar, "A Pragmatic Approach to Mediations by Litigators for Litigators," October 13, 2011
· "U.S. Supreme Court Establishes "Transaction Test" to Determine Extraterritorial Reach of Section 10(b) of Exchange Act and SEC Rule 10b-5," Duane Morris Alert, June 30, 2010
· "So Easy, Even a Philadelphia Lawyer Can E-File," Legal Intelligencer Blog, April 8, 2010
· "Top Ten Mistakes Litigators Make in Arbitration," 14 ABA Young Lawyer 5 (February-March 2010)
· "Reaching for Greater Efficiency in Criminal Justice Administration," Legal Intelligencer Blog, December 10, 2009
· "The New Economic Realities of Family Court," Legal Intelligencer Blog, September 23, 2009
· "In Search of the Righteous Lawyer," Legal Intelligencer Blog, April 7, 2009
· "The Pro Bono Solution," Legal Intelligencer Blog, March 20, 2009
· "Changes for Judges Pro Tem at Commerce Court," Legal Intelligencer Blog, February 24, 2009
· "Fast Times at Mass Torts," Legal Intelligencer Blog, February 6, 2009
· "An Alternative to Litigation Budgets: A Proposal for Litigator and Clients," IOMA Law Office Management and Administration Report (January 2009)
· "A Time to Retire the Litigation Budget? A proposal that's better for clients and counsel," IOMA Partner's Report (December 2008)
· "The Litigation Plan: An Alternative to Traditional Litigation Budgets," The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel 50 (October 2008)
· "Protect Yourself," Investment Advisor, May 2004
· "The Quicksand of Private Actions Under the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade Practices Act: Strict Liability, Treble Damages and Six Years to Sue," 102 Dickinson L. Rev. 1 (1997)
· "Defending a Free Standing Equal Credit Opportunity Act Claim," 114 Banking Law Journal, 108 (1997)
· "New Steps to Preserve the Old: The Revised Historic Preservation Legislation for the City of Philadelphia," 32 Vill. L. Rev. 401 (1987)
· "The Cape Cod National Seashore: A Case Study of Federal Administrative Control Over Traditionally Local Land Use Decisions," 12 B.C. Environmental Affairs Law Review 221 (1985)
· "Note, People Who Live in Glass Houses Should Not Build in Vermont," 9 Vermont Law Review 101 (1984), reprinted in Federal Publications, Inc. 3 Yearbook of Construction Articles 659, 1985
Selected Speaking Engagements
· "Mediation 101: The Nuts and Bolts of Mediation," Philadelphia, April 4, 2012
· "Preparing the Expert Record for a Daubert Motion," Cherry Hill, New Jersey and Philadelphia, February 11 and 21, 2008
· "Consumer Arbitrations," National Association of Independent Broker Dealers, Philadelphia, June 7, 2004