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Mark Gately is a litigator and trial lawyer located in the firm's Baltimore office. Mark has handled and tried cases in a wide variety of substantive areas, including antitrust, securities fraud, hostile takeovers, products liability, professional negligence, and earn out and closing date balance sheet adjustment disputes, among others. The skill that he brings to a dispute is the ability to try the case, if necessary, but often more importantly, to handle and approach any and every case from the perspective of a trial lawyer. He also plans the strategy for the case from day one with the idea that it may well go to trial and that every effort during the pre-trial phase should be directed towards preparing for that possibility and working towards putting together a case that can be won in the courtroom. He firmly believes that all too often cases become expensive, and aimless discovery endeavors are costly and do not benefit the client in any way.
Mark’s skill as a litigator and trial lawyer has been widely recognized by selection into highly esteemed organizations and by respected publications. He is one of the very few lawyers in America who has been honored, and humbled, by membership in:
- Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers (inducted in 2000)
- Fellow, International Academy of Trial Lawyers (inducted in 1998; Maryland State chair 2001 -- 2010)
- Fellow, International Society of Barristers (inducted in 2009)
- American Board of Trial Advocates (elected to membership, 2003)
- Chambers USA (listed as Tier 1, highest level, litigator in Maryland in 2006-2012)
In referring to Mark, Chambers has said: "'Superior trial lawyer' Mark Gately 'can’t be outworked or outprepared,' say referees: 'If his adversaries go to bed at two am, he will go to bed at four, if that’s what it takes to win.' Benefiting from 'great presence in court,' Gately is also esteemed for his 'creativity and efficiency.' He has expertise in healthcare disputes but is currently focusing his practice on commercial matters.”
Mark considers himself to have been extremely fortunate throughout his career both with respect to his mentors and with regard to the extremely high caliber of people who have worked for and with him. While in law school, he was able to work as a student clerk for a young Judge Robert Bell, who is now the Chief Judge of Maryland Court of Appeals, Maryland’s highest court. He was also blessed to have had the opportunity to work as a law clerk after graduation for an amazing judge and teacher, Judge C. Stanley Blair of the United States District Court for the District of Maryland. Of all the awards and recognition Mark has received, which make him both proud and somewhat uncomfortable, his greatest source of pride is that three of his former mentees have been elected to the American College of Trial Lawyers.
Mark has handled, and continues to handle, litigation matters in a number of specialty areas. Within the last 24 months alone, he has been involved in:
- BNLfood Investment Limited SARL v Martek Biosciences Corp. - This is a monopolization lawsuit brought by a company based in Luxembourg against Martek Biosciences. In this case, BNL alleges that Martek engaged in improper and illegal conduct resulting in a monopoly in a purported market for the infant formula additive DHA/ARA (two long chain fatty acids which research has shown to be beneficial to infant brain and eye development) in the United States. The case is presently pending in the United States District Court for the District of Maryland. Mark is lead counsel for the defendant in the case.
- Martek Biosciences Corporation-Royal DSM N.V. merger litigation - Mark was principal counsel defending breach of fiduciary duty claims against Martek and its Board of Directors growing out of its US$1.1bn merger with Royal DSM NV. He was able to settle all cases in a manner that resulted in a total payment of only US$250,000 by Martek on its own behalf and on behalf of its Directors.
- Black & Decker Corporation/Stanley Tool Works merger - In this US$4bn stock exchange merger of equals between the world’s largest power tool manufacturers, Mark was chief litigation counsel and, with his team, devised and implemented the strategy for handling numerous stockholder and derivative actions all of which essentially asserted that Black & Decker and its Board of Directors had breached their fiduciary duties in not receiving adequate compensation for the stockholders of Black & Decker in connection with the merger. In implementing the tactical and strategic response to these cases, Mark was able to achieve a very low-cost (mid-six-figure) settlement of all of the cases without any discovery or depositions taking place before the settlement was reached. The client was overwhelmingly pleased with this result, which was ultimately approved by the court.
- Constellation Energy Group Inc. - Constellation constructed the first wind turbine farm in the State of Maryland. Litigation was threatened on many fronts, most particularly under the Endangered Species Act for harm that will allegedly result to the Indiana Bat, a designated endangered species, from the construction and operation of the wind turbines. Mark was chosen by Constellation to act as its lead litigation counsel. Working with Constellation, he was able to avoid the commencement of any lawsuits during this project and was able to secure the support of leading experts on the subject for Constellation.
- Google/AdMob merger - In this highly publicized acquisition of AdMob by Google, Mark headed the antitrust litigation team in preparing for what, for a time, was an almost certain litigation challenge to the merger from the Federal Trade Commission. Ultimately, the FTC chose to clear the merger rather than institute litigation relating to it.
- Election Systems & Software (ES&S) - Mark was lead counsel for ES&S in a monopolization claim asserted against ES&S by one of its competitors, Hart Intercivic (Hart), in connection with a merger transaction involving ES&S and Diebold. This lawsuit was brought in the United States District Court for the District of Delaware, while the Department of Justice was itself conducting an investigation of the merger. Mark argued for ES&S and prevailed against Hart's motion for a temporary restraining order. Although Hart threatened to continue with the case and seek a preliminary injunction, it never did so and ultimately achieved no relief at all in the lawsuit it filed against ES&S.
- Hayes v. Harmony Gold Mining Inc. - This securities fraud and class action was brought in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York on behalf of a purported class of purchasers of American Depository Receipts of Harmony Gold Mining, a South African-based company which is one of the leading gold mining operations in the world. Mark is lead counsel for Harmony in this matter, the settlement of which was approved by the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. The plaintiff objected to the settlement and filed an appeal with the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. That appeal is now pending.
Hogan Lovells Publications
"International Product Liability Review - Issue 44." Product Liability Alert, Hogan Lovells
27 June 2011
"U.S. Supreme Court Reaffirms the Limits of Personal Jurisdiction." Hogan Lovells Alert, Hogan Lovells
"European Product Liability Review - Issue 39." Product Liability Alert, Hogan Lovells
03 May 2007
"Defending Biologics: How the Unique Attributes of Biological Products Invite Different Approaches to Litigation." Mass Torts Litigation Committee, Vol. 5, No. 2, ABA Section of Litigation
18 February 2004
"Direct and Derivative Actions of Maryland Corporation Stockholders." The Maryland Bar Journal.