Patterson Belknap Announces Three New Partners and Two Counsel

December 13, 2016

Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler LLP announced that, effective January 1, 2017, Muhammad U. Faridi, Jonah M. Knobler, and Jean-Claude Lanza will become partners of the Firm, and Melissa R. Ginsberg and Brian M. Sweet will become counsel.

Muhammad U. Faridi practices in the firm’s Litigation department. His practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, including disputes related to structured finance transactions, breach of fiduciary duty, international joint ventures, and fraud. Mr. Faridi has handled a wide variety of litigation matters at various stages for large financial institutions, such as financial guarantors and hedge funds. He has advised clients with interests in distressed businesses, and his clients have recouped billions of dollars through litigation and out-of-court settlements. He is also a founding contributor to the firm’s blog on the New York Commercial Division, Mr. Faridi received the New York State Bar Association’s 2014 Outstanding Young Lawyer Award, highlighting his recognition by the Young Lawyers Section of the association for having rendered outstanding service to both the community and legal profession. From 2007 to 2008, Mr. Faridi served as a Law Clerk to the Hon. Jack B. Weinstein of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. He received his J.D. from City University of New York School of Law, where he served as an Editor of the New York City Law Review. He received his B.A. from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, summa cum laude.

Jonah M. Knobler practices in the firm’s Litigation department. His practice focuses on consumer class actions, false advertising, food and drug law, and intellectual property. Mr. Knobler’s publications have been cited in over 20 law review articles, in U.S. Supreme Court briefing, in the leading treatise Nimmer on Copyright, and in the Oxford Handbook of Mobile Music Studies. From 2009 to 2010, Mr. Knobler served as a Law Clerk to the Hon. Danny J. Boggs of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. From 2008 to 2009, Mr. Knobler served as a Law Clerk to the Hon. Frederic Block of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. He received his J.D. from Harvard Law School, cum laude, where he was awarded the Nathan Burkan Prize for Copyright Law by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers. He received his B.A. from Harvard University, cum laude, and was elected to the Phi Beta Kappa Society.

Jean-Claude Lanza practices in the firm’s Corporate department, where he is primarily focused on international capital markets and corporate finance. Mr. Lanza represents institutional banking clients in a wide variety of transactions related to cross-border financings and reorganizations, including public and private offerings of equity and debt, project financings, exchange listings, spin-offs, as well as tender, exchange and rights offers. Mr. Lanza also provides counsel to multinational corporations on acquisitions, restructurings, capital markets transactions, agency-related appointments, anti-corruption compliance, and federal securities laws. In addition, Mr. Lanza advises a wide variety of clients across a broad spectrum of commercial activity, including industry-leading financial institutions, global consumer goods retailers, international law firms, advanced energy technology and distributions firms, securities exchanges, SEC-registered investment advisers, and internationally recognized charitable organizations. He received his J.D. from New York Law School and his B.A. from Fordham University.

Melissa R. Ginsberg practices in the firm’s Litigation department, where she focuses on complex commercial litigation and white-collar criminal defense. Her experience includes mortgage-backed securities litigation, asset forfeiture proceedings, false advertising litigation, and representations in connection with investigations conducted by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and other federal agencies. She is also a Co-Chair of the ABA’s International Criminal Committee. Ms. Ginsberg shares the firm’s commitment to pro bono representation and has been recognized for Outstanding Pro Bono Service by The Legal Aid Society of New York. Prior to joining the firm, she served as Law Clerk to the Hon. Anita B. Brody, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Ms. Ginsberg received her J.D. from Columbia Law School, where she served as an Articles Editor of the Columbia Journal of Transnational Law. She received her B.A. from Amherst College, magna cum laude.

Brian M. Sweet practices in the firm’s Trusts & Estates department, primarily engaging in sophisticated estate planning for individuals and families and the administration of estates. This includes preparation of wills and revocable trusts, as well as the design and implementation of irrevocable trusts and other entities designed to accomplish lifetime transfers to family members and charitable organizations in a tax-efficient manner. He has also structured innovative solutions to help donors, fiduciaries and family offices accomplish tax and non-tax goals in the administration of estates and family trusts. Mr. Sweet’s practice encompasses a wide range of issues relating to charitable giving. He has experience developing and negotiating planned gifts and bequests, counseling fiduciaries in the administration of estates with substantial charitable interests, and advising charitable organizations with respect to their restricted gifts. Mr. Sweet received his J.D. from Harvard Law School, where he served as Articles Editor of the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. He received his B.E. from Vanderbilt University, summa cum laude.