Jason is a co-founding partner of Block & Leviton and focuses his practice on investor protection and shareholder rights matters. He serves as Co-Chair of the Firm’s New Case Investigation and Monitoring Team and Chair of the Merger and Acquisition/Deal Litigation Team.
Since 2011, Jason was named either a “Super Lawyer” or “Rising Star” by Massachusetts Super Lawyers, an honor given to only 3% and 5% of all lawyers, respectively. Jason also has a Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Rating, the highest rating possible.
Jason has focused his practice on claims alleging breaches of fiduciary duty against officers and directors of publicly traded companies. Indeed, in just the last few years alone, his litigation efforts have led to hundreds of millions of dollars being returned to aggrieved stockholders. More specifically, Jason served as lead or co-lead counsel in the following breach of fiduciary duty actions: In re Plains Exploration & Production Co. Stockholder Litig., Case No. 8090-VCN (Del. Ch.) (litigation led to an increase of approximately $400 million to the original merger amount); In re Pilgrim’s Pride Corp. Derivative Litig., Case No. 2018-0058-VCL (Del. Ch.) ($42.5 million settlement); Witmer v. HIG Capital LLC et al., Case No. 2017-0862-LWW (Del. Ch.) ($42.5 million settlement); In re Handy & Harman, Ltd., S’holders Litig., Case No. 2017-0882-TMR (Del. Ch.) (settled for $30 million, making it one of the largest sell-side premiums ever achieved for stockholders through Delaware litigation); In re Onyx Pharmaceuticals Inc. Shareholder Litigation, Case No. CIV523789 (Cal. Sup. Ct) (settled for $30 million; at the time, the largest M&A class action in California state court history); and In re Rentrak Shareholders Litig., Case No. 15CV27429 (Ore. Sup.) ($19 million settlement and with the related action, $23.75 million; the largest Oregon M&A settlement); Garfield v. Blackrock Mortgage Ventures, LLC (In re PennyMac Financial Services, Inc.), Case No. 2018-0917-KSJM (Del. Ch.) (settlement of $6.85 million reached, pending court approval).
He has also litigated numerous actions pursuant to the federal securities laws, including, but not limited to: In re BP plc Securities Litigation, Case No. MDL 2185 (S.D.Tex) (settlement of $175 million); Rubin v. MF Global, LTD., et al., Case No. 08-cv- 02233 (S.D.N.Y.) ($90 million settlement); In re VeriSign Securities Litigation, Case No. C-02-2270 (N.D. Cal.) ($78 million settlement); Welmon v. Chicago Bridge & Iron, Case No. 06-cv-01283 (S.D.N.Y.) (settlement of $10.5 million; in approving the settlement, the court noted: “Plaintiffs’ counsel have conducted the litigation and achieved the settlement with skill, perseverance and diligent advocacy.”); Ong v. Sears Roebuck & Co., Case No. 03 C 4142 (N.D. Ill.) ($15.5 million settlement); and In re Swisher Hygiene, Inc., Securities and Derivative Litig., Case No. 3:12-md-2384 GCM (W.D.N.C.) ($5.5 million settlement; in approving the settlement, the court held: The settlement is – gosh. . . . the fact that it’s occurring within the context of a securities case, which is very difficult for plaintiffs to win, is extremely impressive to me. . . . [T]his is a matter which has been fairly litigated by people. Honorable Graham C. Mullen, In re Swisher Hygiene, Inc., Securities and Derivative Litig., 3:12-md-2384 GCM (W.D.N.C.) ($5.5 million settlement).
Jason also has considerable experience litigating consumer class action cases involving deceptive business practices as well. For instance, Jason, as co-lead counsel, successfully recovered 100% of the class’s alleged damages stemming from the overcharging of scooped coffee beans at Starbucks stores throughout the country. See In re Starbucks Consumer Litig., Case No. 2:11-cv-01985-MJP (W.D. Wa.); Keenholtz v. GateHouse Media, LLC, et al., Case No. 17-184-A (Mass. Sup.) (settlement involved complete relief to punitive class members and significant corporate governance measures); MabVax Therapeutics Holdings, Inc. v. Sichenzia Ross Ference LLP, et al., Case No. 3:18-cv-02494-WQH-MSB (S.D. Cal.) (represented a formerly-public company in its malpractice action against its former law firm).
In addition to his class action experiences, Jason has litigated other forms of complex litigation. For instance, he worked with a former State of New York Attorney General in the defense of an attorney accused of insider trading, which included a criminal referral to the United States Department of Justice. Similarly, Jason represented a former employee whistleblower before the S.E.C. where, in one instance, he successfully argued that his clients should receive the maximum whistleblower award of 30% pursuant to the Dodd-Frank Act, which equated to nearly $1 million. He also represented the same whistleblower in a retaliation claim against his old employer, a large, multinational financial institution. See John Doe v. Oppenheimer Asset Management, Inc., et al., Case No. 1:14-cv-00779-LAP (S.D.N.Y.). Finally, he was also heavily involved in the representation of four detainees being held at the Guantánamo Bay Naval Station in Cuba.
After receiving his law degree from Gonzaga University School of Law, with honors, Jason attended the Georgetown University Law Center and received a Master of Laws (LL.M.) in Securities and Financial Regulation (Dean’s Award, 1 of 6). During that time, he was the inaugural LL.M. student selected for an externship with the S.E.C., Enforcement Division. Jason is now a member of the Association of Securities and Exchange Commission Alumni.
Jason is currently litigating a number of investor suits against large corporations, including: Charter Communications; Madison Square Garden Entertainment; Santander Holdings USA, Inc.; GE; Carvana; Golden Nugget; and Craft Brew Alliance, among others.
Throughout his career, Mr. Leviton has been privileged to work on behalf of some of the largest and most sophisticated institutional clients in the United States and abroad. A sampling of those clients include: