Commercial Litigation

“Noted for its deep experience in federal and state criminal investigations and trials.” - CHAMBERS USA

Kramon & Graham has a reputation for excellence in representing clients in commercial litigation matters. Our trial lawyers have received acclaim from the legal community, the business community, and our clients for our success in trying complicated and important commercial-litigation matters. Our business clients are a diverse group of individuals and private and public entities. We have tried cases involving virtually every kind of business and commercial dispute, including disputes concerning: business break-ups, government and private contracts, securities, fiduciary duties, insurance coverage, unfair competition, employment, commercial and residential construction and development, real property rights, lending and banking practices, trademark and copyright infringement, trade secrets, and professional malpractice. Our commercial litigation practice includes handling significant class actions and multi-district actions.

True Courtroom Experience. Perhaps most of all, Kramon & Graham is known best for its trial experience. Since 2004, Kramon & Graham has been recognized by Chambers USA in the top band of leading firms for commercial litigation in Maryland. According to Chambers USA, our attorneys have been described as the "most experienced trial lawyers in the state." Our litigation team includes seven permanent members of the Fourth Circuit Judicial Conference, five Fellows of the American College of Trial Lawyers, four former Assistant United States Attorneys, a former Assistant Attorney General for the State of Maryland, and several former prosecutors. Our firm and our attorneys are recognized, annually, as leaders in litigation by numerous legal ranking organizations including Best Lawyers, Chambers USA, Super Lawyers, and Benchmark Litigation.

What Our Clients Say. We approach every case assuming that it will be tried. We believe that approach puts the client in the best possible position for success, whether at the motions stage of a case, during settlement talks, or during the trial itself. Our clients describe us as having "top-notch service and excellent business sense" and say that our attorneys "really understand [the client's] operations and what's important to [clients]." We are most proud that our peers in the profession have retained us for their personal litigation matters.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). Modern litigation almost invariably includes opportunities for ADR. It is not unusual for contracts to include arbitration clauses, and the state and federal courts in our jurisdiction routinely require that the parties participate in settlement conferences and mediations before court-appointed mediators. Likewise, parties frequently agree to employ private mediators to attempt to facilitate settlements. The firm's trial attorneys have vast experience representing clients during ADR proceedings.

Indeed, our litigation team includes lawyers who have been hired by other litigants to serve as arbitrators and mediators.

E-Discovery and Document Retention. Proper retention and management of electronically-stored information (ESI) have become essential for the operation of a business and in the prosecution and defense of complicated lawsuits. Our trial attorneys have substantial experience in cases that involve the collection, production, and review of vast amounts of ESI. Our team includes a member of the joint bar-court committee that drafted the Suggested Protocol for Discovery of ESI for the United States District Court for the District of Maryland. We help our business clients develop practical, manageable document-retention policies that are designed both to serve ordinary-course business needs and facilitate efficient, cost-effective retrieval and review of ESI during litigation. We also work with our clients' in-house technology personnel to implement appropriate "litigation-hold" policies and procedures that are designed to minimize the risks of court-imposed sanctions based on allegations of spoliation and improper preservation of ESI. In appropriate cases, particularly in large ESI-discovery cases, we routinely work with outside document-management and ESI-technology vendors to assist in e-discovery matters.

Representative Matters

Summary Judgment for Law Firm Charged with Malpractice
The Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a summary judgment obtained by Jim Ulwick and Jean Lewis on behalf of a law firm sued for legal malpractice. The plaintiff alleged 13 separate acts of malpractice and sought $17 million in damages. Jim and Jean successfully moved to have the case withdrawn from the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York and obtained summary judgment on all counts in the district court.
Fourth Circuit Upholds Constitutionality of City's Changes to Public Safety Unions' Pension Program
In a major victory for Kramon & Graham client, the Mayor and City Council of Baltimore City, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upheld the constitutionality of changes made to the public safety unions' pension plan in 2010. According to the federal appeals court, the changes did not constitute impairments within the meaning of the Contract Clause of the United States Constitution. The Court of Appeals affirmed the district court's decision in favor of the City that changes to active employees' pensions did not constitute a federal impairment and reversed the district court's determination that the changes made to retirees' plans did [opinion]. Jim Ulwick and Jean Lewis represented the City at trial, on appeal, and before the City Council in 2010 as the legislation at issue was enacted.
Successful Defense of a National Financial Institution in a Class Action Matter
Andrew Jay Graham and John Bourgeois successfully defended a national financial institution in a four-week class action jury trial. The federal court case was instituted by plaintiffs who alleged that the financial institution and others were liable to them for alleged irregularities in home mortgage transactions over a 20-year period. Plaintiffs sought hundreds of millions of dollars in compensatory damages. The jury decisively rejected the plaintiffs’ claims and returned a verdict in the financial institution’s and the other defendants’ behalf.
Obtained Judgment in Favor of National Lender
Andrew Jay Graham and John Bourgeois successfully obtained judgment in favor of a national lender, on the eve of a class action trial, after demonstrating that plaintiffs were unable to prove their claims. The federal court case was instituted by plaintiffs who alleged that the lender and others were liable to them for purported violations of Maryland’s finders fee law over a 20-year period. Plaintiffs sought hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.
Defense Verdict in Favor of Law Enforcement Officer
Ezra Gollogly and John Bourgeois represented a law enforcement officer charged with voluntary and involuntary manslaughter arising out of an altercation with a suspect. This high-profile case involved complex medical issues and allegations of excessive use of force. Throughout the trial, the case received extensive media attention. After deliberating for a few hours, the jury rendered a defense verdict on all counts. The decision was not appealed.
Defended Major Hospital in Suit Brought by Credentialed Provider
Natalie McSherry successfully defended a major hospital sued by one of its credentialed providers for imposing restrictions on the provider's privileges. The provider had sought damages, injunctive relief, and attorneys' fees from the hospital and members of its medical executive staff and others, based on breach of contract, negligence, and tortious interference with contract and prospective advantage. Natalie obtained summary judgment in the Circuit Court for Baltimore County in favor of the hospital and all providers involved in the decision to impose the restrictions.
Arbitration Decision in Favor of Law Firm
Jim Ulwick and Jean Lewis successfully defended a law firm and its management against claims by a former partner of fraud and breach of contract. The arbitrator found no fraud and awarded the claimant less than 10% of his claimed contractual damages.

Commercial Litigation



Commercial Litigation




Commercial Litigation