Taylor English lets me practice law leanly and efficiently while surrounding me with a full-service firm with skills in almost any area of law my clients may need.
Bill Leonard has more than three decades of experience in litigation involving securities and investments, liability of directors, officers, managers, and partners of businesses, shareholder and member rights and fiduciary duties, accountant and auditor liability, law firm liability and banking law. His experience includes class actions, lawsuits in federal and state courts in many different states, and arbitrations. Mr. Leonard is also a trained mediator and has served as an arbitrator for securities disputes. He conducts internal investigations into potential wrongdoing by officers, directors and employees of corporations. He has represented officers, directors, accountants, brokers and other professionals in investigations by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the New York Stock Exchange, the Commodities Futures Trading Commission and the Department of Justice. He has represented investors, stockbrokers and brokerage firms in lawsuits and FINRA arbitrations concerning stocks, bonds and options.
Mr. Leonard has been counsel to parties in litigation involving insurance coverage, restrictive covenants, tax sharing agreements, mergers and acquisitions, computer software and other business disputes. He has represented shareholders in asserting dissenters’ rights in connection with corporate mergers and asset sales. He has also handled fiduciary litigation in several contexts, such as the representation of employees in litigation against trustees and corporate sponsors of ERISA plans to recover benefits and for breach of fiduciary duty, waste and conflicting interest transactions.
Mr. Leonard investigated and asserted claims as counsel to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation against directors, officers and attorneys of failed financial institutions in several states. As counsel to the National Credit Union Administration, he headed the investigation and assertion of claims against directors, officers and attorneys of two Massachusetts credit unions, including uncovering the largest real estate fraud in United States credit union history.
He is married and has four adult children. His hobbies include tennis and weekend backpacking trips on the Appalachian Trail.
State Bar of Georgia, Litigation Section, Business Law Section
Represented a primary United States federal agency in the closing and receivership of dozens of Georgia banks, including the reconstruction and analysis of collateral holdings, the foreclosure and disposition of loans, and the sale of owned real estate.
Directed investigations into potential professional liability claims associated with the failures of four state-chartered banks in Georgia from 2006 to 2014. The investigations included examination of the conduct of bank directors, officers, lawyers, accountants, appraisers, engineers, architects, and other professionals, as well as the assertion of claims in connection with bankers’ bonds. Claims against directors and officers in two of the matters ...
Client Bill Wilkinson worked with Mick Ramunno at Renaissance Asset Management, where Mr. Ramunno traded a commodity investment pool on behalf of investors. During an audit by the National Futures Association, Ramunno admitted that the operation was a Ponzi scheme. Over the next several months, Mr. Leonard guided Mr. Wilkinson through investigations by the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (which sued Mr. Ramunno and Renaissance for commodities fraud ...
Represented the liquidating trust of a bankrupt Real Estate Investment Trust based in Las Vegas, Nevada, in suing the former directors and officers of the REIT (and other parties) for breaches of fiduciary duty and negligence in the United States District Court for the District of Nevada and for avoidance and recovery of preferential and fraudulent transfers in the United States Bankruptcy Court in the same district from 2012 to 2014. The firm filed three ...
- August 15, 2016
- February 19, 2016
- February 20, 2015
- February 21, 2013
- February 28, 2012
- March 4, 2010
- June 23, 2009
- Financial Institutions
- Government and Internal Investigations
- Litigation and Dispute Resolution
University of North Carolina, JD with honors, 1979
Articles Editor of North Carolina Law Review, 1978–1979
Auburn University, BS with highest honor, 1976
Editor-in-Chief of campus literary magazine, 1975–1976
Courts & Adjudicative Bodies
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia
U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Georgia
Supreme Court of Georgia
Court of Appeals of Georgia
Georgia Super Lawyers, 2009–2016
Best Lawyers in America®, 2017