For high-stakes commercial disputes in the United States involving both domestic and international clients, Jim Robinson has substantial first-chair experience leading trial teams from the earliest motion practice all the way through jury trial and appeal.
In addition to international commercial disputes, Jim also has extensive experience representing regional and national law ﬁrms in legal malpractice lawsuits in the United States. In such cases he takes a hands-on approach, managing all aspects of the lawsuits in order to limit his client's exposure, as he also prepares these cases for trial.
Many of Jim's recent commercial cases include representation of clients connected to the banking industry. Such cases include representation of financial technology (fintech) companies involved with merchant services and credit card processing in both domestic and international disputes. In addition, Jim has represented a series of banks against multimillion dollar lender liability lawsuits, most of which were resolved with summary judgment in Jim's clients' favor For banking clients, Jim also brings his experience of prosecuting dozens of commercial foreclosure lawsuits on loans totaling over US$1.5 billion.Jim represents foreign and domestic corporations in contract disputes, regulatory and compliance matters, and consumer class actions at various stages, including appeals. He has successfully defended numerous director and ofﬁcer liability actions, and has successfully represented real estate developers and contractors in real estate disputes throughout the United States.
Jim is an active member of a number of professional associations, including the Federal Bar Association, the Trial Lawyers Section of The Florida Bar, the International Law Section of The Florida Bar, the Miami-Dade County Bar Association and the J. Reuben Clark Law Society.
He has taken lead roles in a signiﬁcant number of professional committees, including as the Chair of the International Litigation and Arbitration Committee (2008), the Chair of the International Litigation and Arbitration Committee Conference (2007), a Steering Committee Member on the International Litigation Update (2005–2006), and as a Chair of the FGCU Alumni Association Board of Directors (2009–2011). He has also served on the Law Alumni Council, University of Florida Levin College of Law.
Order compelling arbitration for international client, 2017
Jim led the White & Case team that represented an overseas hedge fund in an international dispute with a U.S. investor. Plaintiff, the U.S. investor, filed suit in U.S. District Court and sought damages in excess of $18 million. But Plaintiff had agreed to arbitrate any disputes relating to his investment in a written agreement with our client. In court, Plaintiff sought to avoid arbitration by recasting his investment and arguing that the governing agreement was "null and void" due to fraud. Plaintiff also argued that he was not personally a party to the agreement and therefore could not be forced to arbitrate. Our team successfully argued that, under the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards, the Court still must compel arbitration because Plaintiff's fraud and duress defenses were issues for the arbitrator to decide. We also successfully argued that arbitration is appropriate against non-signatories under principles of equitable estoppel. The federal court granted the motion to compel arbitration and stayed all proceedings pending finalization of arbitral proceedings in Israel
Bankruptcy court victory for banking client, 2017
Jim led the White & Case team that represented Ocean Bank, in its capacity as a secured creditor of a Miami-based corporation, ARM Ventures, LLC. Following entry of attorney's fees judgments in other courts in favor of Ocean Bank as prevailing party and against ARM Ventures, LLC – and presumably to avoid paying those judgments – ARM Ventures, LLC filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Ocean Bank moved to dismiss the chapter 11 case as a "bad faith" bankruptcy filing. Following several months of litigation in the bankruptcy court and multiple hearings, including an extensive evidentiary hearing, the Bankruptcy Judge dismissed the chapter 11 filing as a bad faith bankruptcy filing, with prejudice for one year.
Order compelling arbitration for international client, 2016
Jim was a member of the White & Case team that represented Seoul-based Hyundai Motor Company in an international dispute with Key Motors, Ltd., a distributor of Hyundai vehicles in Jamaica Key Motors filed a lawsuit in Florida state court claiming, among other things, that Hyundai breached a purported oral agreement commencing in 1999 that allegedly gave Key Motors exclusive rights to distribute Hyundai commercial vehicles in Jamaica. Our team successfully removed the action to Florida federal court under the Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards and its implementing US legislation. They then moved immediately to compel Key Motors to arbitrate the dispute in Seoul, Korea, based on an arbitration provision in a written distributorship agreement that Key Motors and Hyundai entered into in January 2013. The federal court granted Hyundai's motion to compel arbitration and stayed all proceedings pending finalization of the arbitral proceedings in Korea.
Successful replevin of corporate aircraft, 2016
Jim led the trial team that represented Wells Fargo Northwest, N.A. (as Owner Trustee) and DVB Bank SE (as Servicer to Trust) in a federal lawsuit for replevin of a $10 million (USD) cargo aircraft, and for damages stemming from breach of a lease agreement. Shortly after filing the lawsuit, our team obtained from the federal court an Ex Parte Writ of Replevin, and within a few days of filing the lawsuit executed the Writ and repossessed the aircraft with assistance from the U.S. Marshal Service. Shortly after taking possession of the aircraft, we assisted our client with a swift and favorable resolution of the lawsuit.
Successful resolution of dueling lawsuits for international client, 2016
Jim led the trial teams that represented a European client in a pair of dueling lawsuits filed in Florida. The lawsuits concerned the ownership and appropriate use of proprietary company software that was developed by a former employee. The lawsuit included claims for misappropriation of trade secrets and violation of Florida's Computer Abuse and Data Recovery Act, and required testimony from computer forensic expert witnesses. Following extensive discovery and motion practice, we obtained a confidential settlement on behalf of our client.
Trial court victory for national law firm, 2016
Jim led the White & Case team that secured a complete victory on behalf of a national law firm that was sued in Miami-Dade County. The lawsuit was brought by a successor trustee, who was the opposing party in an underlying probate lawsuit. Under claims for conspiracy and fraudulent transfers, among others, the successor trustee sued a series of law firms and other professionals for disgorgement of fees earned over a multi-year period. While all of the other firms settled, our client wanted to take the case to trial. A few weeks before trial, the trial judge granted final summary judgment in favor of our client on all claims.
Trial court victory for banking client, 2016
Jim led the White & Case team that obtained a complete victory for our client, Ocean Bank. The Bank filed suits against a pair of developers who had signed deficiency promissory notes on behalf of the Bank. Before the parties undertook any discovery in the cases, we obtained final judgment in favor of Ocean Bank – for amounts totaling over $30 million – following successful motions for judgments on the pleadings.
Trial court victory for credit card processor, 2015
Jim led the White & Case team that obtained summary judgment in favor of our client, an international fintech company that focuses on credit card and payment processing, in a dispute with one of its merchants stemming from improper credit card chargebacks totaling millions of dollars.
Successful resolution of lawsuit against Miami-Dade County, 2015
Jim led the White & Case team in a lawsuit filed by our client, First-Citizens Bank & Trust Co., against Miami-Dade County. The suit stemmed from a multi-million dollar loan extended by the Bank's predecessor, and which resulted in losses by the Bank. Following discovery, and with the case scheduled for trial a few months later, the Bank worked with a third-party developer to resolve the matter amicably. The terms of the settlement are confidential.
Trial court victory for banking client, 2015
Jim led the White & Case team that obtained final summary judgment in favor of our client, Ocean Bank. The Bank filed suit against a developer to enforce a multi-million dollar deficiency note. The borrowers defended the lawsuit vigorously, and concentrated much of their defense on proving novel e-discovery defenses, which culminated in a motion for spoliation against our client. Following an evidentiary hearing, the trial court denied the motion for spoliation and entered final judgment in favor of the Bank.
$2 million judgment over corporate jet following jury trial, 2014
Jim led the White & Case trial team that secured a complete victory in a dispute between his client, Ugo Colombo, a Miami real estate developer, and Dacra Development Corp., which is owned by Craig Robins. Following a two-week trial, a Miami jury ordered Dacra Development Corp. to pay more than $2 million in maintenance fees to Ugo Colombo, for the costs associated with a $22 million jet that they owned jointly. The jury ruled in favor of Mr. Colombo on all claims brought against him by Dacra. This was a complete victory for Jim's client.
Successful resolution of international arbitration proceedings for credit card processor, 2014
Jim was a member of the White & Case team that assisted in resolving a dispute involving our client, an international fintech company that focuses on credit card and payment processing, in international arbitration proceedings. The dispute related to enforcement of a software products licensing agreement that covered sales territories in the Middle East and Africa.
Appellate victory in lender liability lawsuit, 2013
Jim led the White & Case team that secured a complete victory in the trial court for our client, First Citizens Bank & Trust Company. The Bank was sued in a multi-million lender liability lawsuit, in connection with a series of loans to a Miami developer. Jim and his team not only defeated the lender liability lawsuit – which judgment was affirmed on appeal – but they proceeded to trial and obtained a deficiency judgment against the Bank's borrower and the personal guarantor.
Successful resolution of lawsuit on behalf of credit card processor, 2013
Jim led the White & Case team that resolved a long-running lawsuit on behalf of our client, an international fintech company that focuses on credit card and payment processing, in a dispute with one of its merchants. The merchant filed suit for slander of credit and other commercial torts.
Trial court victory in lender liability lawsuit, 2013
Jim led the White & Case team that secured a complete victory in the trial court for our client, Ocean Bank. The Bank was sued in a multimillion dollar lender liability lawsuit, in connection with a series of loans to a local pharmacy operator. Jim and his team obtained final summary judgment in favor of Ocean Bank on all claims brought against it in this action.
"Expert Witnesses: 'Prep, Depos, Exam and Cross – How to Get it Right'", 2014: CLE Seminar, Miami, Florida
"Expert Witnesses: 'Tips for Getting it Right'", 2012: CLE Seminar, Miami, Florida
Recognized practitioner, Chambers USA, 2017-2018
Professional Liability & Business Litigation, Super Lawyers, 2016
Rising Star in Business Litigation, Super Lawyers, 2009–2014
Rising Stars, Daily Business Review's 40 under 40, 2014
Outstanding Lawyers of Miami Dade County Award, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation's 40 Under 40 , 2011