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Kristine L. Roberts

Shareholder
Memphis
T: 901.577.8136
F: 901.577.4202

Kristine L. Roberts is an experienced business and commercial litigator who has defended banking and financial institutions in numerous trial and appellate cases in federal and state courts, as well as in private arbitrations.

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Featured Experience

Obtained defense verdict in a breach of contract action tried to a jury in federal court in which the plaintiff had sought $2 million in earnout payments allegedly due under an asset purchase agreement.

Prevailed on a motion for summary judgment and successfully argued for affirmance on appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit in a case arising out of the disposition of a business unit in which former employees claimed $2.4 million in damages for the alleged breach of a payment agreement.
Successfully moved to dismiss shareholder derivative action against a corporation and its officers and directors, in which the plaintiff claimed breach of fiduciary duty and mismanagement relating to allegedly high-risk and fraudulent banking practices. Subsequently defended the dismissal order at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.

Professional Biography

Overview

Based in the Memphis office, Ms. Roberts serves on Baker Donelson's Board of Directors and is chair of the Firm's Financial Services Litigation Group.

Her focus is on banking and financial institutions litigation, and she has represented her clients in a wide variety of cases, including class actions and derivative actions, breach of contract actions, fraud claims, breach of fiduciary duty cases, trusts and estates disputes, mortgage-related litigation, bank deposit claims and business disputes.

Ms. Roberts also handles securities claims, insurance coverage matters and other complex litigation of a commercial nature. In representing her clients, Ms. Roberts strives to provide excellent client service in an efficient manner and to help clients successfully navigate through the challenges of litigation.

Representative Matters
  • Obtained defense verdict in a breach of contract action tried to a jury in federal court in which the plaintiff had sought $2 million in earnout payments allegedly due under an asset purchase agreement.

  • Prevailed on a motion for summary judgment and successfully argued for affirmance on appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit in a case arising out of the disposition of a business unit in which former employees claimed $2.4 million in damages for the alleged breach of a payment agreement.
  • Successfully moved to dismiss shareholder derivative action against a corporation and its officers and directors, in which the plaintiff claimed breach of fiduciary duty and mismanagement relating to allegedly high-risk and fraudulent banking practices. Subsequently defended the dismissal order at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.
  • Successfully moved to dismiss a Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act class action for lack of Article III standing.

  • Served as lead counsel for a servicer that successfully moved for judgment on the pleadings and won dismissal of a class action alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

  • Counseled client through data breach involving employees' personal information.

  • Negotiated favorable settlement of a shareholder derivative action and shareholder class action against a corporation's board of directors and officers, in which the plaintiffs alleged mismanagement, self-dealing, and fraud.

  • Won a directed verdict motion in a bench trial of a malicious prosecution action and successfully defended the verdict after its appeal to the Tennessee Court of Appeals.
  • Served as lead counsel for a mortgage company in a case before the Tennessee Court of Appeals in which the Court held that there is no private right of action to enforce the Home Affordable Modification Program.
  • Defeated motion for preliminary injunction brought by a shareholder seeking to enjoin vote on executive pay and asserting damages on behalf of a shareholder class.

  • Achieved dismissal of majority of claims and negotiated favorable settlement of multi-million dollar suit alleging breach of fiduciary duty against bank trustee.
  • Successfully defended a financial institution in federal court action alleging violations of federal and state securities laws, commercial bribery, and aiding and abetting the breach of fiduciary duties.

  • Won an award favoring a broker-dealer client in a FINRA arbitration against an institutional investor seeking more than $3 million in damages for alleged fraud and unsuitable investment recommendations.

  • Prevailed as lead counsel on a motion to dismiss a claim to invalidate a mortgage and successfully argued for affirmance at the Tennessee Court of Appeals.
  • Drafted successful briefs in matter appealed to the Tennessee Supreme Court, in which the Court ruled that the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act does not apply to class actions and that common law fraud claims did not apply to the oral representations at issue.
  • Successfully represented municipality and utility division in a billion-dollar landmark water rights lawsuit filed by a neighboring state over rights to an interstate aquifer. Baker Donelson prevailed on a motion to dismiss, defending the dismissal at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and opposing the plaintiff's petition for certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Prevailed on motion for summary judgment in federal court action in action alleging intentional and negligent misrepresentation.
  • Successfully defended online auction site in an arbitration brought by a user claiming breach of contract, breach of warranty and fraud.
  • Won political asylum after an evidentiary hearing before the U.S. Immigration Court for a refugee who was persecuted in his home country on the basis of his ethnicity.
  • Obtained dismissal of breach of contract action filed in state court based on forum selection clause.
  • Represented construction company in federal court action alleging breach of contract and fraud, achieving favorable settlement for client.
Professional Honors & Activities
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America® in Litigation - Municipal (2014 – 2018); Commercial Litigation (2015 – 2018)
  • Listed in Mid-South Super Lawyers in Business Litigation (2013 – 2016)
  • Listed as among the top 50 female attorneys in the Mid-South by Mid-South Super Lawyers (2014 – 2016); among the top 50 Memphis attorneys and top 100 Tennessee attorneys (2015, 2016) 
  • Board of Directors – Memphis Area Legal Services
  • Baker Donelson's Women's Initiative, Co-Chair of Mentoring Committee
  • Co-Chair – Content Management Committee, ABA Section of Litigation
  • Recipient – Memphis Business Journal's "Best of the Bar" Award, Private Large Firm Category (2016)
  • Editor-in-Chief – ABA Section of Litigation's Litigation News (2013 – 2014); Editorial Board Member (2007 – 2015)
  • Baker Donelson Memphis Recruiting Chair (2010 – 2015)
  • Named to Memphis Business Journal's Super Women in Business (2012)
  • Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Law Class of 2009
  • Baker Donelson Memphis Pro Bono Attorney of the Year (2007)
  • Named to Memphis Business Journal's Top 40 Under 40 (2007)
  • Memphis Bar Association Leadership Forum (2007)
  • Member – Leo Bearman, Sr. American Inn of Court (2005 – 2008, 2012 – 2015)
  • Member – American, Tennessee and Memphis Bar Associations 
  • Member – Association of Women Attorneys
Publications
Speaking Engagements

Awards

Education

  • Harvard Law School, J.D., 2001
    • Executive Editor – Harvard Law Review, 2000 – 2001
  • Princeton University, B.A., 1996, magna cum laude

Admissions

  • Tennessee, 2004
  • Massachusetts, 2002
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the First, Fifth, Sixth, Tenth and Federal Circuits
  • U.S. District Court for the Districts of Western and Middle Tennessee
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado

Kristine is in tune to the other side. She knows her stuff, and it’s extremely complicated. She’s sufficiently aggressive.

President at a financial services company

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