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Elizabeth B. Burnett

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[email protected]

+1.617.348.1613

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Betsy is a highly experienced trial lawyer. Her successful representation of high profile clients has been profiled in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, CNBC, and other national media, and she has appeared in courts throughout the country. She has represented corporate directors in corporate governance matters, public companies in trade secret litigation, and large financial institutions in disputes involving tax-exempt financings.

Betsy is an experienced trial lawyer with deep knowledge of business fraud, corporate governance, fiduciary duty and high technology/trade secret matters. She served for 10 years as the firm-wide Chair of Mintz’s Litigation Department and in other firm management roles. Betsy writes and lectures frequently on corporate governance issues and is the author of a chapter in The World's Foremost Authorities on Corporate Government & Compliance.

Betsy and her trial team achieved a complete victory for Shari Redstone in the “vicious corporate battle“ [The New York Times: “Fight for Viacom Is Said to End with the Redstones in Control”] which challenged certain actions concerning the corporate governance of Viacom, Inc., including the proper composition of the Viacom Board. Following months of highly contentious litigation in Delaware and Massachusetts, a global settlement was achieved that dismissed the lawsuits against Ms. Redstone and her father Sumner Redstone and affirmed the reconstitution of the Viacom board. The settlement has been hailed as a total win for the Redstone family and for Ms. Redstone [The Los Angeles Times: “Viacom Power Struggle Ends With Shari Redstone Ushering in New Era for the Media Company”; The Los Angeles Times: “Viacom Struggle Ends: Shari Redstone at Helm: Daughter of Media Mogul ‘Pulled Off the Palace Coup’”; The Wall Street Journal: “Viacom and the Redstones Call it a Day” describing the settlement as the “completion of the ascent of Shari Redstone, Mr. Redstone’s daughter, who is poised to take pole position in the family empire”].

Betsy advises corporate directors with respect to corporate governance issues and fiduciary duties. She also represents life sciences and medical device corporations involved in trade secret litigation. Her jury trial experience is diverse, and she has experience in high-profile litigation that requires strategic advice that integrates issues relating to the media, advocacy groups, and government relations. Betsy also has a special expertise in disputes involving tax exempt financings and has represented financial institutions involved in these disputes around the country. Her client matters have been profiled in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Forbes, Newsweek, and on CNBC, and she has appeared in courts throughout the country.

She is married and has two children.

Education

  • University of Michigan (JD)
  • Brown University (BA)

Experience

  • On behalf of Volcano Corporation, defeated 27 trade secret misappropriation claims relating to medical technology, following a two-week trial and related hearings: LightLab Imaging, Inc. v. Axsun Technologies, Inc. and Volcano Corporation (Mass. Business Law Session Court).
  • On behalf of Teleflex Inc., defeated a $30 million punitive damages claim, following a four-week jury trial.
  • On behalf of Shari Redstone and Robert Steele, obtained dismissal of all breach of fiduciary duty claims against them, in their capacities as directors of Midway Games: In re: Midway Games, Inc. (U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Delaware).
  • On behalf of Shari Redstone obtained settlement of Phillippe Dauman and George S. Abrams, As Trustees of the Sumner M. Redstone National Amusements Trust v. Sumner M. Redstone, et al. (Norfolk Probate Court Civil Action No. 16E0020QC) and In Re Viacom Inc. Section 225 Litigation Consolidated C.A. No. 12472-CB (Court of Chancery, Delaware).
  • On behalf of William I. Koch defeated a multi-million “palimony” type claim by former girlfriend, following a jury trial.
  • On behalf of Volcano Corporation, defeated $220 million lost profits damages claim, after trial: LightLab Imaging, Inc. v. Axsun Technologies, Inc. and Volcano Corporation (Mass. Business Law Session Court).

Recognition & Awards

  • Massachusetts Super Lawyers: Business Litigation (2004 – 2018)
  • Corporate Counsel Magazine: Top Attorneys in Business Litigation in the United States (since 2008)
  • Best Lawyers in America: Bankruptcy and Creditor-Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law (2013, 2015)
  • Best Lawyers in America: Commercial Litigation (2014 – 2019)
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent

Involvement

  • Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America
  • Director, Brown University Sports Foundation
  • Chairman of the Board, Greater Boston YMCA
  • Former Member, Brown University Women’s Leadership Council

Recent Insights

News & Press

Viewpoints

We are currently serving as co-counsel with the ACLU of Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office, and others in a lawsuit against the president’s executive order curbing immigration by refugees and others traveling from seven majority Muslim countries.

News & Press

Best Lawyers named 85 Mintz attorneys to its 2018 list of The Best Lawyers in America. In addition, Mintz attorneys Matthew J. Gardella and Samuel M. Tony Starr were named “Lawyer of the Year” in their respective practice areas.
Fifty-three Mintz attorneys have been named Massachusetts Super Lawyers for 2016 and thirty-one have been named Massachusetts Rising Stars. The findings will be published in the November 2016 issue of Boston Magazine and in a stand-alone magazine, New England Super Lawyers. 
Best Lawyers named 73 Mintz attorneys to its 2017 list of The Best Lawyers in America. Mintz attorneys selected for inclusion in this year’s list span 44 practice areas.