Home » Attorneys » Collins, Bruce W.

"Experience matters. I’ve been in cases where the trial lasted for four months and I’ve seen just about every tactic the government can throw at you. When I take on something new, I do it knowing that I’ve been tested. And I passed."

Corporations and their general counsel may not say so publicly, but some things do scare them.

Sometimes, just learning the DOJ or SEC is investigating the company is enough, or hearing that a multibillion-dollar lawsuit has been filed against the company. When that happens, nothing is more important than finding the right person to handle the case.

That’s when companies and general counsel call Bruce Collins. He’s the attorney for their most serious problems, their worst nightmares.

In a legal career spanning more than 30 years, Bruce has handled so much high-stakes litigation—including representing former Enron CEO Ken Lay in civil and criminal courts—that he just doesn’t scare anymore. As a veteran of the many battles he’s seen, he’s developed great confidence, both in himself and in the legal system.

His experience is matched only by his intelligence. Clients tend to notice that Bruce is the guy who has figured out the answer to a complex problem while everyone else is still writing out the equation.

All the while, he never loses sight of the fact that his job really is all about people. Whether he’s representing a CEO, a board member or the company itself, his goal is to fix things and get his clients back to what they do best—business.

Experience

$6B Lawsuit Dismissed
Was lead counsel in a decisive victory for a securities broker-dealer, securing dismissal of a multi-billion dollar lawsuit on the eve of trial.  The suit, brought by a major insurance company and one of its subsidiaries, was pending in New Jersey state court.  The lawsuit alleged New Jersey RICO, tortious interference, and commercial disparagement claims relating to the firm’s analyst coverage of the plaintiffs.

Click here for the Newark Star Ledger’s account of the dismissal.

Enron
Was lead counsel for Ken Lay in the civil and regulatory litigation following Enron’s failure and was a lead trial counsel in his criminal trial.

Other Litigation of Note
Was lead counsel in a successful one-week bench trial in federal court in Kansas City in which a hedge fund sought up to $12M in damages against a public company relating to an investment in preferred stock.  The court ruled against the plaintiff on all counts.

Represented outside directors in high-profile option backdating derivative litigation in state and federal courts in Texas and Delaware.

Represented outside directors and general counsel in securities class actions and related bankruptcy proceedings arising out of failure of nation’s largest food wholesaler.

Represented chief financial officer in regulatory, class action, and derivative proceedings arising out of earnings manipulation claims against a technology company.

Represented major pension fund in two complex battles over governance and taxation involving the Las Colinas development.

Represented a major reinsurance brokerage company in a non-compete case involving the departure of the most senior officers of a public company.

Honors and Distinctions

Best Lawyers in America, 2011-2015, Commercial Litigation, Litigation – Regulatory Enforcement (SEC, Telecom, Energy), Litigation – Securities

Texas Super Lawyers, Business Litigation, 2003-2014

Best Lawyers in Dallas, D Magazine, 2012-2014

Speeches/Publications

Moderator, Investigations: Whistleblowers in Today’s Online World, North Texas Chapter, National Association of Corporate Directors, May 10, 2011.

Panel member, CEO Succession: The Board’s Role in Handling Planned and Unplanned Changes at the Top, North Texas Chapter, National Association of Corporate Directors, May 12, 2009.

Speaker, Dallas Bar Association Ethics Fest, Honest Services Fraud: The Thin Line Between Civil and Criminal Exposure for Fiduciary Breaches, May 7, 2009.

Panel member, ABA Section of Litigation Teleconference, Keeping It Real: Making White Collar Defendants Blue Collar Friendly, June 17, 2008.

Moderator, Internal Investigations: Overseeing a Risky Process and Finding the Right Balance, North Texas Chapter, National Association of Corporate Directors, June 10, 2008.

Speaker, The G. Thomas Van Bebber Ninth Annual Ethics in Litigation Forum Presented By The Earl E. Connor American Inn of Court, Ethics Lessons Learned from Enron, Kansas City, Kansas, June 5, 2008.

Courts Struggle to Define the Parameters of Honest Services Fraud, December, 2007.

Bankruptcy, M&A and Corporate Governance: The Interplay of State and Federal Civil and Criminal Law, 26th Annual Jay L. Westbrook Bankruptcy Conference, November 2007.

The Perils of Dismissing Enron as “Different,” American Bar Association Section of Litigation Annual Conference, April 2007.

Enron: Trying the Corporate Case of the Century, American Bar Association Section of Litigation Annual Conference, April 12, 2007.

Enron: A post-verdict panel discussion with the lawyers who tried the case, Dallas Bar Association, September 27, 2006.

Of Enron and the Thompson Memo, State Bar of Texas Antitrust and Business Litigation Section, November 3, 2006.

Speaker, SIA, NASD, and NYSE forums.

Court Admissions

Texas 1978

U.S. District Courts for the Northern, Southern, Eastern, and Western Districts of Texas

U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Fifth and Eleventh Circuits

United States Supreme Court

Education

University of Texas
J.D., with high honors, 1978
Member, Texas Law Review, 1976-78
Order of the Coif

Stanford University
B.A., 1975

Judicial Clerkship
Honorable Robert M. Hill, United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, 1978-79

Associations/Affiliations

Fellow: American Bar Foundation

Fellow: Texas Bar Foundation

Fellow: Dallas Bar Foundation

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