George Cate is a trial lawyer who focuses his practice on business litigation, government enforcement proceedings, internal investigations, and related counseling. His experience includes advising companies and business executives on the management of complex legal matters that involve significant public scrutiny and exposure on multiple fronts, including civil, criminal and reputational.
George has represented public, private and federally owned companies, as well as individuals, in connection with such matters. He has worked with companies and executives in several industries, including petroleum, public power, healthcare, construction, restaurant, book and digital content distribution, banking, tire, and automobile and aviation manufacturing.
George’s business litigation experience includes the representation of U.S. and international clients in federal and state court. He has handled matters arising from a full range of complex commercial disputes, including misappropriation of trade secrets and other intellectual property disputes; executive liability for breach of fiduciary duty and violation of non-competition/non-solicitation obligations; interference with business relationships and other business torts; fraud claims (including bank fraud, embezzlement and consumer fraud) and disputes under the False Claims Act; insurance litigation; lender liability, disputes involving financial institutions serving as trustees, and other banking litigation; federal tax litigation; and a variety of other contract and commercial disputes.
During his career, George has also represented businesses in the defense of high-exposure personal injury litigation, including mass tort cases and the defense of automotive and aviation manufacturers in product liability litigation.
During his more than 30 years of practice, George has tried a significant number of jury and bench trials, and he has obtained the dismissal or other favorable pretrial disposition of many other cases. He has also successfully prosecuted and defended a broad range of injunction proceedings. In addition, George has represented clients in securing the favorable settlement of complex litigation matters, including the successful negotiation of settlements in nationwide class actions, government enforcement proceedings, and international business disputes.
George has represented companies and individuals in government enforcement actions and investigations on both the federal and state levels.
George has defended companies and individuals in civil and white-collar criminal investigations brought by federal and state authorities; negotiated agreements to avoid criminal charges and resolve civil claims brought by the government; and defended clients in a variety of enforcement proceedings in federal and state court. Further, where his client has been the victim of criminal activity, George has represented the client’s interests during the course of law enforcement’s investigation and prosecution of the culpable parties.
George has also represented companies in internal investigations involving highly sensitive matters, including several cases where employees or third parties allegedly engaged in schemes to defraud the company and/or the public. In some instances, George has participated in an internal investigation as part of the organization’s response to a government enforcement proceeding. In other situations, George has handled an internal investigation without a pending government action in order to help an organization identify, contain and appropriately remediate a particular area of exposure.
In addition, George has advised clients on the response to private-party claims arising out of government enforcement proceedings, including the negotiation of a nationwide class-action settlement agreement that arose out of a highly publicized federal criminal investigation involving one of the largest privately held companies in the U.S.
George has also worked with communications consultants to develop proactive media strategies to minimize damage to the client’s reputation. George’s experience includes partnering with a communications consultant to prepare a comprehensive communications plan for a public power company to follow in managing the response to future government enforcement proceedings and other potential corporate crises.