Charles Platt is a leading commercial litigator, recognized nationally for his work defending financial services and insurance companies. He is the partner-in-charge of the firm's New York office.
Mr. Platt has extensive experience in a wide variety of civil litigation matters, ranging from securities fraud and ERISA class actions to disputes regarding hedge fund management and bond indentures. He has defended numerous companies in national class actions regarding investment and retirement products, including cases challenging compensation arrangements and fees that give rise to breach of fiduciary duty and prohibited transaction claims. He has successfully tried cases raising breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract, tortious interference, fraudulent conveyance, business valuation, indemnification, preliminary injunction, franchise termination, employment, bankruptcy and other commercial issues.
Honors & Awards
Recognized for exceptional standing in the legal community for his general commercial litigation practice in the 2006-2015 editions of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business
Selected by peers for inclusion in the 2006-2018 editions of the Best Lawyers in America for insurance law
Named a "New York Super Lawyer" in 2011-2017 for his work as a leading commercial litigator
Selected as a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America, a peer-nominated, invitation only Trial Lawyer Honorary Society
Mr. Platt is currently representing companies in shareholder derivative, securities, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, and ERISA class actions, as well as companies in the LIBOR litigation and in the Madoff-related cases. His recent appellate experience includes victories in the Ninth Circuit, Fourth Circuit, Fifth Circuit and Sixth Circuit in class actions alleging fraud in connection with the sale of financial and retirement products. His recent trials have litigated breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract, fraudulent conveyance, and indemnification issues.
Mr. Platt serves on the board of directors of the Downtown Alliance and the Legal Aid Society. He is also a member of the board of advisors for the Center for Civil Justice Reform at New York University School of Law. In 1992, Mr. Platt was appointed as Special Assistant United States Attorney for the Banca Nazionale del Lavoro ("Iraqgate") Investigation by the US Department of Justice.
Jonathan Youngwood is Co-Chair of the Firm’s Litigation Department and is a member of the Executive Committee. With more than two decades of experience, Jon has represented clients in a wide range of high-profile complex commercial litigation and regulatory matters, including securities, corporate control, antitrust, and ERISA disputes.
Jon was named a “Distinguished Leader” by the New York Law Journal in 2017, an award that recognizes lawyers in leadership roles who have achieved impressive results in the last year. Chambers and Partners consistently recognizes Jon as a leading securities litigator (Band 1), describing him as a “very well-respected lawyer with a tremendous reputation, and is very good in the courtroom”; “a great advocate”; “the best lawyer on his feet – he is incredibly comfortable before judges and panels”; and a “smart, focused and creative lawyer who brings the required intensity to the job.” Chambers also describes him as “a detail-oriented litigator with the ability to get to the nub of an issue” who “has extensive securities knowledge”; a “flair for written work and oral advocacy”; who “commands respect in the courtroom”; and “is highly esteemed for his distinguished securities litigation practice, with a number of major financial institutions calling upon his skills in defending class actions, derivative claims and wider disputes work.” He is recognized as a “Leading Lawyer” by The Legal 500, where market commentators describe him as “very talented”; who has a “client-oriented approach”; “technically superb, bright and articulate”; an “outstanding securities litigator”; and “smart, hardworking and extremely professional.” In 2017, he was the recipient of the “Securities Lawyer of the Year” award by Euromoney’s Benchmark Litigation, an award that recognizes the country’s most distinguished litigators; he was listed as a “Top 10 Nationwide Securities Star”; and is consistently recognized as a national and New York “Litigation Star” in Securities Litigation by Benchmark Litigation, where sources have described him as “one of the smartest lawyers I know. He not only is hardworking, but he has the ability to be both a big-picture thinker and also pay incredible attention to detail.”
He edits the Securities Law Alert, a monthly newsletter published by the Firm, is the Co-Chair of PLI’s annual program entitled “Handling a Securities Case: From Investigation to Trial and Everything in Between,” and received the Burton Award for Achievement in Legal Writing.
Among a number of significant pro bono achievements, Jon served on the Simpson Thacher team that achieved a finding (after a seven-month trial) that the New York City public schools fail to provide a constitutionally adequate education.
Jon received his B.A. with honors from Brown University in 1990. He received his J.D. in 1994 with honors from the University of Chicago, where he served as Comments Editor of The University of Chicago Law Review. He also holds a Master of Public Policy from The University of Chicago (1992). Jon joined Simpson Thacher in 1995 following a one-year clerkship with Hon. Dennis G. Jacobs of United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He became a Partner in 2003.
Aon’s Professional Services Group is the only insurance broker with a dedicated loss prevention team to serve its law firm clients. As a member of the loss prevention team, Jennifer Finnegan advises Aon’s 275+ law firm clients on risk management, professional responsibility, professional liability, and legal ethics issues.
Prior to joining Aon in 2018, Jenny was the General Counsel of Herrick, Feinstein LLP, a mid-sized, full service law firm based in New York. Before taking on the General Counsel role, Jenny was a litigation partner at Herrick, focusing her practice on civil litigation for financial institutions and for manufacturers in the pharmaceutical, consumer products, and automotive industries. She has more than 20 years’ experience as a litigator and over 12 years’ experience in professional responsibility counseling and defense of professional liability claims.
Jenny graduated from Georgetown University Law Center in 1995 and earned her undergraduate degree summa cum laude from The College of New Jersey.
She is admitted to practice law in New York, New Jersey, and Washington, DC.
C. Evan Stewart's practice focuses principally on the financial services industry, where he handles litigation matters for domestic and international clients before federal and state trial and appellate courts, in arbitration forums, as well as before the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation and the U.S. Supreme Court. He advises clients on a range of complex commercial matters, including antitrust, bankruptcy, class action defense, ethics, intellectual property, internal investigations, securities litigation, and tax controversies.
Mr. Stewart was featured by the New York Law Journal in the "Top Trials of 2005" for his successful representation of Theodore Sihpol, the first person in U.S. history to be criminally charged for "late trading" mutual funds. More recently, Mr. Stewart successfully represented Gary Prince against the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. In May of 2013, after a three week bench trial in federal court, the judge dismissed all six charges of securities fraud against Mr. Prince.
Mr. Stewart previously served twelve years as Executive Vice President and General Counsel for The Nikko Securities Co. International Inc., and as a director of Nikko Financial Services Inc. Additionally, Mr. Stewart served as First Vice President, Associate General Counsel, and Head of Litigation at E.F. Hutton & Company Inc. Since 2003, Mr. Stewart has been tasked by Goldman, Sachs & Co. to, among other things, oversee and litigate all of the disputes arising out of the company's Private Wealth Management Division.
Recognized as a Super Lawyer for Securities Litigation since 2009, Mr. Stewart has also been hailed as a "Local Litigation Star" by Benchmark Litigation since 2010. In 2016, Mr. Stewart received the Sanford D. Levy Award from the New York State Bar Association's Ethics Committee for having "significantly contributed to an understanding of professional ethics by the publication of an article, commentary or a series of articles or commentaries on the subject." In 2008, he received the Modaq Content Award for writing the most popular article in the United States. Since 1980, Mr. Stewart has been AV(R) Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell.
Mr. Stewart is a visiting professor at Cornell University and an adjunct law professor at Fordham Law School. He has been a regularly contributing columnist for the New York Law Journalsince 1990, the New York Business Journal since 2006, and has published approximately 300 articles on diverse legal subjects. He is also frequently featured in the national media and regularly speaks across the country on securities professional responsibility and complex litigation issues.