W. Todd Boyd Partner
W. Todd Boyd is the managing member of Boyd Richards Parker & Colonnelli, P.L. He was born in Virginia and moved to Southern Florida when he was a child. Todd graduated from the University of Florida School of Law with honors in 1988 and then joined the firm of Ruden McCloskey Smith Schuster and Russell where he became an equity partner in 1995. He then joined the law firm of Katz Barron and left that firm as a named partner in 2003 with his entire practice group.
Todd opened BRPC in 2004 and has built the Firm based on a foundation of dedication, experience, and availability to his clients that has resulted in 14 years of success and growth. Todd has focused his practice on professional liability, D&O, employment practices, coverage, and appeals defending thousands of clients in Florida and New York over the past 28 years. He has successfully litigated a broad range of lawsuits and disputes involving professional liability, insurance coverage, directors and officers, employment practices, entertainment, ERISA, homeowners and condominium associations, personal injury and wrongful death, product liability, reinsurance and securities cases. Todd also has extensive appellate experience in both state and federal courts in Florida, New York, and the United States Virgin Islands. Todd was named as a 2017 Florida Legal Elite winner in the area of Commercial Litigation.
ADMISSIONS, PROFESSIONAL ASSOCIATIONS AND MEMBERSHIPS
Todd is admitted to the Florida, New York, and District of Columbia Bars. He is also admitted to practice before all of Florida’s Federal District Courts, the Eastern District Court of New York, and the Second, Third, and Eleventh Circuit Courts of Appeal. He has been AV rated since 1997.
University of Florida, Fredric G. Levin College of Law, Gainesville, FL, Juris Doctor, 1988
Obtained final summary judgment in a legal malpractice action seeking in excess of $30,000,000 arising from the representation in a high-profile divorce. On appeal, I obtained an affirmance of the summary judgment order. The client was able to recover all fees expended. Obtained a defense verdict in a legal malpractice action seeking in excess of $6,000,000 in damages filed against a multi-state law firm arising from the firm’s representation of a client in a bankruptcy proceeding and recovered over $400,000 in fees from Plaintiff.
Obtained final summary judgment on behalf of a New York lawyer who had prepared an estate plan for couple with an estate valued in excess of $45,000,000. The beneficiaries claimed malpractice, fraud and collusion between the lawyer and other, better treated beneficiaries. The firm obtained an affirmance of the order on appeal and recovered $500,000 in fees from the Plaintiff. In the Eastern District of New York, obtained a dismissal with prejudice of a lawsuit alleging malpractice, wire fraud, RICO, fraud and embezzlement by an attorney who wired over $4,500,000 in closing proceeds to the “wrong” account in Russia and had made the same mistake in three unrelated closings. The firm had the dismissal affirmed by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.
Represented a prominent business man claiming a 50% interest in the movie “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” starring Johnny Depp and Benecio Del Toro. The defendant was Rhino Entertainment which subsequently sold the move rights to Universal Pictures. The firm filed the lawsuit in federal court in the Southern District of Florida based upon the residency of the client but was subsequently transferred to Los Angeles. The suit settled after two years of discovery near trial soon after the movie was released because the move initially grossed less than $10,000,000 before being pulled from the theaters despite a production and advertising budget of $50,000,000.
Represented the State of Florida against Antioch University’s claim its reversionary interest in Birch State Park in Fort Lauderdale had vested title to the park in Antioch’s name. Antioch claimed that the State’s operation of the Park as a recreation area, dumping of waste and use of part of the park as a landfill violated the deed and use restrictions imposed by Hugh Taylor Birch when he donated the 180-oceanfront acreage to the State of Florida. Jury found the State’s non-park use was temporary and not sufficiently significant to render the overall use of the property as anything but a park. The verdict was affirmed on appeal. Obtained summary judgment in a lawsuit against a law firm alleging abuse of process based upon the litigation privilege and had the judgment affirmed by the Third District Court of Appeals.
Represented President Gerald Ford, William Spencer, former President and Chairman of Citicorp, and George Jenkins, former Chairman of Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, in a class action lawsuit filed in the Southern District of Florida that was subsequently transferred to Boston, seeking recovery of over $800,000,000 in losses incurred by the Eastern Airlines Variable Pension Plan for Pilots. All three clients were directors of the Pension Plan and Plaintiff alleged they violated their ERISA obligations by transferring management of the $3,000,000,000 in assets from State Street Bank and Trust to Charles Dye, a retired pilot who had recently become a registered investment advisor, and was a senior ALPA member, and allowing the Pension Fund to become 85% insolvent through the sale of over $1,500,000,000 of liquid assets with those proceeds than used to purchase real asset assets in the U.S and London. Plaintiffs also alleged all defendants grossly overvalued the real estate assets resulting in substantial overpayments to retiree’s electing lump sum payouts of their Pension interest. Because of the impending failure of Eastern Airlines, a large percentage of the pilots had “retired” early in order to obtain their lump sum benefit. The case was ultimately settled for $7.5 million dollars, which was a small fraction of the actual claimed loss. Set aside the certification of a 5000-member class action in the United States District Court in the Virgin Islands claiming toxic exposures resulting in a beneficial settlement of the claims.
Represented a local university which had improperly obtained human remains for use in its funeral services program. The university had received over 200 bodies from two sources, neither of which had obtained proper authorization for embalming training. It was alleged that a transporter paid to deliver the bodies to a crematorium or elsewhere, diverted them for a fee so that the university’s students could practice embalming. Because no family member had consented in writing, the university could not legally accept the remains. In addition, Jewish families complained of the violation of their religious beliefs. The firm defeated class certification, which required the families to pursue individual lawsuits, and some did not, resulting in the favorable settlement of the seventy lawsuits filed after denial of class certification.
Obtained dismissal of a lawsuit alleging that a client conspired to defraud certain intended beneficiaries of over $35,000,000 in economic stimulus funds which were to be used to provide broadband internet service to rural communities throughout Florida. The case was dismissed with no payment by the client or his carrier. Successfully defended prominent South Beach restaurant against FLSA and FMWA collective and class action lawsuit brought by 20 tipped employees defeating the employee plaintiffs attempts at both certification as a collective action and certification under Rule 23 as a class action and shutting down plaintiffs request to issue notice to all potential class members. This was a significant victory in the employment world, specifically in the context of FLSA cases. It is very difficult to defeat certification of a collective action in an FLSA lawsuit. Represented Hovensa, the operator of the second largest oil refinery in this hemisphere, in the U.S. Virgin Islands in numerous lawsuits based upon employment related practices and toxic exposures.
Successfully defended the general counsel of a large financial services company accused of failing to make statutorily required disclosures in Reg S offerings. Successfully defended the City of Gainesville in First Amendment claims brought by the Fire of God Ministries contending the City was infringing upon its and its members religious rights. Obtained a verdict for Gerling Re, a German reinsurer, in numerous arbitration proceedings in the Bahamas, in which the Bahamian health carrier sought over $2,000,000 in reimbursements from Gerling pursuant to various policies issued by Gerling.
Obtained summary judgment in a class action lawsuit filed in the Southern District of Florida against very large multi-state law firm accused of assisting its precious metals trading client defraud thousands of customers. The metals trading firm accepted over $25,000,000 in purchase orders, and funds for those orders, but never purchased any precious metals. Instead the company only purchased futures contracts supposedly supporting the orders. The client had prepared the various disclosures provided to customers, provided the company advice on a regular basis and represented the company, and its two owners, in a transfer of their assets to the Bahamas after the lawsuit was filed. Plaintiff sough treble damages under various statutes. The firm handled the appeal and had the summary judgment affirmed by the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
Obtained summary judgment in a Southern District of Florida suit against and accountant sued by a Regulate S investor contending the accountant, and the company, had misrepresented the company’s financials and failed to make required disclosures under the federal securities laws. The Firm handled the appeal and had the summary judgment affirmed by the U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
Obtained an order striking out pleadings (summary judgment) in an action against a lawyer pending in the Bahamas seeking over $60,000,000 in damages. Plaintiff contends that the lawyer assisted his business partner in removing him from their company and then transferring assets Plaintiff claims were his to the partner. The matter is currently on appeal.
Obtained dismissal with prejudice of a lawsuit alleging that a law firm procured false testimony in order to avoid liability for its client and itself and presented that false testimony and other evidence to the court. The Court dismissed the case with prejudice on the initial motion with no discovery. Plaintiff did not appeal. Monitored and assisted in the defense of toxic exposure claims filed by employees of microwave popcorn manufacturers against flavoring companies. Most claimants sought damages for sever lung damage and many required double lung transplants. Monitored and defended a copper mining company sued by two plaintiffs claiming severe brain damage as a result of exposure to mercury while cleaning and repairing retort machines used to leech the copper from the rock. Both plaintiffs spoke and acted as though they had incurred brain damage. Plaintiff sought over $25,000,000 in damages based upon life care plans for both plaintiffs and turned down over $2,000,000 offered prior to trial. The jury returned a verdict for the defense and Plaintiffs did not appeal. Obtained a defense verdict in a suit against a local municipality alleging sexual harassment and discrimination claims and had the verdict upheld on appeal.
Obtained final summary judgment on behalf of a pension plan against claims that it had failed to pay plaintiff eight years of benefits. The firm is defending a contractor in a suit seeking over $30,000,000 in damages for 3,000 different claims arising from construction defects related to the building shell, post tensioning, stucco, exterior paint, mechanical, and electrical.
Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a construction engineer and inspector on the basis of governmental immunity as an agent of the Florida Department of Transportation in a suit involving the death of the driver and serious injuries to two passengers arising from the HOV lane construction in Miami. The firm had the summary judgment affirmed on appeal.
Obtained a final judgment for its client following an arbitration proceeding in which the petitioner sought over $2,500,000 due pursuant to construction contract for services provided. Defended prominent charter school and its employee against claims of defamation, conspiracy to defame, and tortious interference with a business relationship. After a two-week jury trial, Plaintiff was awarded a significant jury verdict amount that the Trial Court reversed finding Plaintiff was entitled to zero damages after the Trial Court granted all of the Firm’s directed verdict motions in favor of our clients. After successfully defending clients at trial, we obtained a per curiam affirmance from the Third District Court of Appeals affirming the Trial Court’s Directed Verdict rulings in favor of our clients.