Michael B. Carlinsky


New York Office
Tel: +1 212-849-7000
Fax: +1 212-849-7100


Practice Areas
Lender Liability and Other Banking and Financial Institution Litigation
Class Action Litigation
Employment Litigation and Counseling
Energy Sector Disputes
Media and Entertainment Litigation
Insurance and Reinsurance Litigation
Insurance Recovery
Intellectual Property Litigation
Product Liability and Mass Torts Litigation
Securities Litigation


Hofstra University School of Law

(J.D., 1989)

Susquehanna University
(B.A., cum laude, 1986)

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Michael B. Carlinsky, the Chair of Complex Litigation and Co-Chair of Insurance Litigation at Quinn Emanuel and a founder of the firm's New York office, has consistently been ranked among the top litigators by multiple leading global publications.  Chambers USA (2014) described Mr. Carlinsky as "'a master strategist' who is praised for his 'unique ability to see the big picture and craft and work toward results on a broad scale involving a huge constellation of matters.  His broad-based commercial litigation expertise is complemented by notable experience in insurance-related disputes.'"  Chambers USA (2013) found that Mr. Carlinsky is "held in high esteem by peers, who consider him to be ‘one of the top trial lawyers in the country.'" Chambers added: "Market commentators continue to highlight Michael Carlinsky as an excellent and ‘tough litigator’ whose deep trial capabilities see him act for clients in high-value commercial and securities-related cases." Prior Chambers USA publications described Carlinsky as having "strong gut instincts," an ability to "recognize pressure points in cases and get things done," "not afraid to try cases," "a tenacious lawyer with serious street smarts" and having the force of a "freight train" in court.  He draws praise for his "astute judgment and client-focused approach." Mr. Carlinsky has also been named one of the "Top 100 Trial Lawyers in America" for 2015 by Benchmark Litigation.  His practice is international in scope, representing multinationals in all types of litigation with a particular emphasis on complex commercial litigation; business-tort litigation; insurance-related litigation; and intellectual property litigation.  Mr. Carlinsky has recovered over two billion dollars in verdicts, awards or settlements for his clients.

Representative Clients


Mr. Carlinsky's clients include American International Group ("AIG"), Morgan Stanley, INVISTA/Koch Industries, Legg Mason, CSN (Brazil), ING Bank,  IAC/Interactive Corp., Enstar Group, and the ECRA Pool.

Notable Representations

Lead counsel for AIG in a $10 billion fraud suit against Bank of America and its affiliates arising out AIG’s purchase of billions of dollars in Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities.

Obtained jury verdict in NY federal court, following seven day trial,  finding in favor of client CSN, a large Brazilian steel company, on all claims worth in excess of $300 million.

Representing AIG in a federal court action brought by a Canadian company seeking to walk away from its obligation under an interest rate swap worth in excess of $1.5 billion to AIG.

Successfully represented Morgan Stanley, including at trial, in a $250 million dispute against Barclays arising out  of a credit default swap on a collateralized debt obligation ("CDO"). 

Successfully represented WMI (parent company of WAMU) in multiple litigations in Bankruptcy Court and District Court against JPMorgan Chase and the FDIC arising out of the failure of Washington Mutual Bank.

Successfully tried a major trademark infringement case for a significant California commercial real estate developer.

Representing Morgan Stanley against Citibank in significant dispute arising out of a credit default swap on a CDO.

Representing AIG in connection with the evaluation and prosecution of litigations against counterparties arising out of AIG's RMBS portfolio.

Representing AIG in a significant  litigation in Chicago federal court brought by hundreds of insurers alleging AIG engaged in a widespread fraud in the workers compensation market.

Achieved complete victory in a significant matter for Morgan Stanley in an arbitration brought against it by the former Global Head of Oil Trading.  Panel awarded zero damages on claims seeking in excess of $30 million in damages.

Represented the limited partners of a hedge fund in a shareholder derivative arbitration against a hedge fund manager and his stockbroker sister based on claims of systemic fraud through post-execution allocations of securities trades over more than a decade.  After an arbitration that spanned seven months, the arbitration panel, in a unanimous opinion, awarded his clients over $75 million in compensatory and punitive damages, which included $35 million for disgorgement of compensation for the period of the fraud.  The award was confirmed.

Representing INVISTA, a subsidiary of Koch Industries, in multiple trade secret litigations against Rhodia.

Served as lead litigation counsel for American International Group, Inc ("AIG") in a multi-pronged dispute with former AIG CEO Maurice R. Greenberg and several  C. V. Starr entities (represented by Boies Schiller and Skadden Arps) concerning the ownership of more than $1 billion worth of insurance business.  Successful on three injunction motions in NY state court and overseeing global effort to separate AIG from Starr Agencies.  Also defended AIG in trademark litigation over Starr marks.  All sixteen matters were settled globally.

Represented AIG in a shareholder derivative action pending in Delaware, known as the Teachers' Retirement System of Louisiana v. Greenberg litigation.  He also represents AIG in connection with fraud and RICO claims by the National Workers Compensation Reinsurance Pool.

Represented AIG as lead trial counsel in a major reinsurance and contract dispute in Connecticut Federal Court.

Representing a large pool of reinsurers (known as the ECRA Pool) as lead trial counsel in defense of claims by USF&G seeking several hundred million dollars from the pool members.

Representing the Trustee of two litigation trusts arising out of the bankruptcy of REFCO and its affiliates, a multi-billion dollar bankruptcy.

Representing a group of bondholders in connection with the bankruptcy of the beverage company Le Nature's, Inc.  He also represents a group of initial and secondary purchasers of Le Nature's bank debt.