Fred Knopf is chair of the firm's Securities Industry practice. He focuses on defending financial industry professionals, including broker-dealers, RIAs, mutual funds, private equity firms and hedge funds, in complex litigation brought under federal and state securities laws.
Securities brokers and other financial professionals entrust Fred to handle their important legal matters because he has extraordinary depth of knowledge and experience in the financial services industry. He provides an exemplary level of evaluation of client issues and develops creative solutions to minimize exposure and reach the best possible outcome. As a litigator, Fred is tenacious yet careful given the severity of the claims his clients often are facing.
Another key aspect of Fred's practice involves matters under ERISA, including all aspects of life, health and disability claims. He also has experience with antitrust class actions, RICO, accountant and attorney malpractice, insurance bad faith, reinsurance, unfair business practices and intellectual property matters.
Areas of Focus
Fred has been involved in numerous significant cases in the financial services industry, including litigation in federal and state courts, FINRA arbitrations and enforcement proceedings, and matters before various regulatory organizations, including the Securities and Exchange Commission.
In resolving securities litigation matters for clients, Fred and his team have achieved an extremely low average ratio of exposure to settlement cost and an outstanding track record in resolving regulatory issues. In In re Provident Royalties Securities Litigation, a $45 million securities class action arising from a Ponzi scheme, Fred's client reached a settlement of just $5 million that included full resolution of all FINRA regulatory matters and entirely avoided exposure for all of the other brokers that sold the product at issue.
With a strong background in accountant liability matters, Fred also regularly represents accountants in the securities litigation context. He has represented an accountant for Bernard Madoff and an accountant for a hedge fund in connection with securities fraud investigations.
Life, Health, Disability & ERISA
Fred has extensive experience with group and individual life and disability litigation, including the representation of plans, employers, insurers, fiduciaries and third-party administrators in claims brought under ERISA. These matters include claims seeking benefits and claims for breach of fiduciary duty, and have involved such issues as the "employee" requirement for ERISA coverage, medical necessity, disability benefits, pre-existing condition limitations, notice of claim denial and plan rights, exhaustion of administrative remedies, exclusionary language in ERISA plans, as well as restitution, rights of reimbursement and statutory penalties.
Memberships & Affiliations
Association of the Bar of the City of New York
Federal Bar Council
Defense Research Institute (DRI)
SIFMA, Compliance and Legal Division
Westchester/Southern Connecticut Chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel (WESFACCA)
Board of Finance, Town of Easton, CT, chairman
Awards & Distinctions
Selected for inclusion in New York Super Lawyers, 2007, 2013
(Also at New York Office)