Muhammad U. Faridi is a Partner in the Firm's Litigation department. He is a go-to litigator on complex commercial matters involving claims relating to breaches of contract and commercial torts. He has represented clients—as both plaintiffs and defendants—in several industries, including commercial real estate, hedge funds, REITs, insurance, manufacturing, software, pharmaceuticals, and non-for-profit organizations. In 2022 alone, he tried three cases—in the first, securing a directed verdict on a statute-of-limitations defense; in the second, securing a $2 billion jury verdict; and, in the third, securing a $1.84 billion settlement for his client mid-way through trial. He was selected as The American Lawyer’s ‘Litigator of the Week’ in connection with the $2 billion jury verdict. Other recent victories include obtaining outright dismissal, after lengthy arguments, of two significant disputes—the first involving a $150 million commercial real estate transaction, and the second related to a substantial joint venture focused on ETFs. The ruling in the commercial real estate dispute was recently affirmed on appeal, which Mr. Faridi argued. He has also handled sensitive internal investigations for his clients, including serving as lead counsel for a special committee charged with investigating a corporate executive. As plaintiffs, his clients have recouped billions of dollars through litigation and out-of-court settlements, and, as defendants, they have avoided similar sums in liability.
In April 2022, Mr. Faridi was appointed to serve on the New York City Mayor's Advisory Committee on the Judiciary (“MACJ”), entrusted to “ensure that only candidates with the highest qualifications and from diverse backgrounds are nominated for judicial appointments to criminal and family courts, as well as interim appointments to civil court.” In 2021, he was elected to the American Law Institute, the leading independent organization in the United States producing scholarly work to modernize and improve the law. He has also served as the Chair of the Executive Committee of the New York City Bar Association, as well as the Chair of its Committee on Capital Punishment and Co-Chair of the Committee on the Recruitment and Retention of Lawyers, which focuses on enhancing diversity in the profession.
Mr. Faridi is the recipient of numerous awards. He was named a “2018 Rising Star” by the New York Law Journal. Based on “peer and client recognition as [a] top trial attorney,” Benchmark Litigation has listed him as a a “Litigation Star” for New York in its 2023 Guide, a “Future Star” in its 2022 Guide, and in its “40 & Under” list for several years. Mr. Faridi was recognized as the 2017 Law Day Honoree at John Jay College of Criminal Justice “for his outstanding commitment to the legal community.” He was also awarded the New York State Bar Association’s 2014 Outstanding Young Lawyer Award, The Legal Aid Society’s Pro Bono Publico Award for multiple years, MFY Legal Services, Inc.’s Partner in Justice Award, and the Brooklyn Bar Association Volunteer Lawyers Project’s TD Bank Champion of Justice Award. As a result of Mr. Faridi’s work in Trump v. Hawaii, where he represented a union of federal asylum and refugee officers challenging government restrictions on the rights of refugees, Benchmark Litigation recognized the Firm as the 2021 “Pro Bono Firm of the Year.” In 2017, as a result of Mr. Faridi’s work on death penalty matters, the Firm was awarded the Norman Redlich Capital Defense Pro Bono Award by the New York City Bar Association.
Mr. Faridi teaches commercial litigation as an Adjunct Professor at Fordham University School of Law, and he has also written extensively on commercial litigation. He is the co-editor of Commercial Division Practice Guide (Bloomberg), a treatise that focuses on litigation in the Commercial Division of the New York State Supreme Court. Mr. Faridi is also a contributor to the American Bar Association Section of Business Law's annual review of business courts. Further, he is a founding contributor to the Firm’s blog, www.NYCommercialDivisionBlog.com, covering developments related to practice and case law in the Commercial Division. He has also made presentations before, among others, the New York State Judicial Institute.
Prior to joining Patterson Belknap, Mr. Faridi served as a law clerk to Judge Jack B. Weinstein, Senior U.S. District Judge in the Eastern District of New York.
Complex Commercial Litigation
Representation of a financial institution in a dispute
s involving residential mortgage-backed securities leading to a settlement mid-way through trial of $1.84 billion on behalf of our client. Representation of a financial institution as a plaintiff in a breach of contract and fraud action resulting in a $995 million settlement for our client.
Representation of a financial institution as a plaintiff in a breach of contract action resulting in a $400 million settlement for our client.
Representation of a financial institution in a pre-suit settlement of claims where our client recouped $1.1 billion as well as loss-sharing for future losses to our client.
Representation of an international investment conglomerate and holding company as defendants in a complex financial fraud action relating to a secured lending facility.
Representation of a hedge fund in enforcement of its right to step-up in the interest rate owed on asset-back securities as a result of defaults by the sponsor in transaction documents.
Representation of a financial institution as a defendant in a breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract action related to a venture for ETFs; obtained dismissal from trial court.
Representation of a large financial institution as a plaintiff in a trade secrets misappropriation and breach of fiduciary duty case that resulted in a favorable settlement for our client.
Representation of a corporate executive and related company in an arbitration proceeding related to stock repurchase that resulted in a favorable settlement for our clients.
Manufacturing Conglomerates & Software
Representation of a enterprise software company in a trade secret misappropriation matter resulting in a $2 billion jury verdict for our client.
Representation of a large manufacturer of auto parts in an action alleging wrongful termination of a contract and fraud that resulted in a favorable settlement for our client.
Representation of an international joint venture in three related lawsuits related to its manufacturing rights resulting in a favorable multi-million dollar settlement that also recognized our client’s rights.
Representation of a large manufacturer of auto parts in an arbitration proceeding alleging inadequate controls that resulted in a favorable settlement for our client.
Representation of a commercial real estate holding company and a property management company as defendants in an action alleging breaches of subordination and management agreements; obtained dismissal of all claims from trial court and then full affirmance on appeal.
Representation of a REIT in a significant dispute with the trustee, servicer, and special servicer of a CMBS transaction; secured favorable pre-suit outcome for our client after mounting an aggressive defense.
White Collar Defense and Internal Investigations
Representation of a large institution in a civil forfeiture action brought by the U.S. Government and several lawsuits brought under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act and the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act.
Representation of a special committee of corporate board in connection with an investigation of alleged wrongdoings by the company’s founder and CEO.
Bankruptcy Litigation and Creditors' Rights
Representation of official committee of unsecured creditors in a large Chapter 11 case involving a multi-state real estate developer with liabilities over a billion dollars.
Representation of bondholders of a large bank in Chapter 7 liquidation.
Representation of a large Brazilian bank in a Chapter 15 proceeding stemming from a judicial recovery proceeding in Brazil.
Representation of the family of a young Black man who was shot and killed by the police.
Representation of a union of federal government asylum and refugee officers in five lawsuits challenging the Trump Administration’s immigration-related policies (work has been profiled in several publications, such as the New York Times).
Representation of refugees from throughout the world (e.g., Honduras, Syria, Pakistan) in U.S. asylum and UNHCR relocation proceedings.
Representation of an abortion provider seeking to void burdensome restrictions on women’s right to choose in Oklahoma.
Representation of two Islamic communities in a federal civil rights lawsuit related to the right to build a house of worship (work has been profiled in several publication, such as the New York Times and Wall Street Journal).
Representation of a class of over 4,000 homeless children in an action against the New York City regarding the right to shelter.
Representation of children with disabilities in a class action against the State of Louisiana alleging violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Representation of a death-row inmate in Missouri for six years in several federal and state court challenges seeking to set aside his death sentence, as well as various organizations such as the National Catholic Reporter and National Governors Association as amici in death-penalty litigations.
Representation of mentally disabled persons in housing court eviction proceedings.
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. District Court, Southern, Eastern, and Western Districts of New York; District of New Jersey; District of Columbia
- U.S. Court of Appeals, First Circuit; Second Circuit; Fourth Circuit; Ninth Circuit
- New York
- New Jersey
- Member, New York City Mayor's Advisory Committee on the Judiciary (2022-present)
- Board of Directors, The TEAK Fellowship (2022-present)
- Board of Directors, National Center for Law and Economic Justice (2019-present)
- New York City Bar Association
- Vice President (2019-2020)
- Chair, Executive Committee (2018-2019)
- Chair, Capital Punishment Committee (2011-2014)
- Fellow, Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (2020)
- Board of Directors, Muslim Bar Association of New York (2009-2010)