Tom Moloney’s practice focuses on complex commercial litigations and major restructuring disputes.

Over a 40-year career, Tom has achieved formidable success as a trial and appellate lawyer in multiple substantive fields of law, including on a number of occasions, creating new precedents benefiting his clients.

Tom joined the firm in 1976, became a partner in 1984, and became a senior counsel in 2021.

Notable Experiences

Litigation Representation of Financial Institutions

  • J. Aron in successfully defeating the fraud and novel lien and trust claims of numerous oil producers that were unpaid as a result of Semgroup’s bankruptcy. The claims were brought in multiple adversary proceedings in the Semgroup Chapter 11 case and in nearly 30 separate state and federal actions. The cases were successfully transferred to and consolidated in the Bankruptcy Court and were finally resolved when the Third Circuit affirmed the opinions of the Bankruptcy and District Courts granting J. Aron summary judgment with respect to all producers’ claims.

  • Goldman Sachs in defending putative civil class action antitrust cases in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York based on the alleged manipulation of the global foreign exchange “London Fix” benchmark, as well as a set of related cases based on alleged violations of ERISA, which were dismissed and are now on appeal, another set of cases based on state law indirect purchaser statutes and a separate set of similar antitrust cases based on the alleged collusive manipulation of the ISDAFIX.

  • HSBC Bank and related entities in defending multibillion-dollar actions related to the Madoff Ponzi scheme and the bankruptcy of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities, including securing two wins before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, in one case affirming a groundbreaking decision by U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff dismissing on standing grounds the Madoff Trustee’s $8.5 billion common law fraud claims and in the other case affirming a decision by U.S. District Judge Richard Berman dismissing similar claims brought by investors in foreign feeder funds on forum non conveniens grounds; in each case certeriori review was sought and denied by the U.S. Supreme Court.

  • Defending HSBC against the trustee’s remaining federal bankruptcy avoidance claims, including securing the dismissal of many of those claims, including based on the Bankruptcy Code’s Section 546(e) safe harbor defense, which position was affirmed on appeal, and that the U.S. bankruptcy law does not authorize the avoidance of foreign transfers, which issue is now on appeal.

  • Defending against claims brought by the Foreign Liquidators of Fairfield asserting $7 billion in common law and statutory insolvency claims based on BVI law, as lead counsel for HSBC and approximately 400 other defendants.

  • Assured Guaranty in an action brought by Lehman Brothers International (Europe) in New York State Court, Commercial Division, in which Lehman brought a claim for $1.4 billion based on allegations that Assured improperly calculated the settlement amount upon termination of numerous credit default swaps subject to an IDSA Master Agreement.

  • Daiwa Securities Capital Markets Co. Ltd. in an alternative dispute resolution proceeding brought by Lehman Brothers Special Financing, Inc. concerning the valuation of over 900 derivative transactions.

  • Citibank in the successful defense at trial of an action brought by a large hedge fund prime brokerage client claiming its demise was caused by an improper margin call.

  • Citibank in defeating claims brought by its landlord’s insurer and by Con Edison that a design defect in its backup generators for its 24-hour trading floor caused or contributed to the collapse of 7 WTC on 9/11.

  • Bank of Montreal in resolving a major derivatives case brought by American Electrical Power relating to the calculation of termination value under a large portfolio of natural gas futures contracts.

  • Bear Stearns in resolving claims in an MDL class action and a related SEC enforcement action regarding alleged market timing trading involving mutual funds.

  • Kidder Peabody & Co. Incorporated in connection with the Trustee investigation, bankruptcy plan, and investor litigation arising from the failure of the Askin managed hedge funds.

  • Rosetta in resolving substantial fraudulent conveyance claims by its former parent company, Calpine Energy.

  • Lehman Brothers in successfully resolving major federal securities law litigations in jurisdictions throughout the country arising from its role as underwriter for OPM (a major Ponzi scheme), as well as the claims of the OPM Trustee.

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Litigation Representations of Corporations

  • The Dow Chemical Company in its successful defense in a three-week trial before Judge Alvin Hellerstein in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against claims brought by INEOS involving a multimillion-dollar dispute under a 35-year chemical supply agreement.

  • The Dow Chemical Company in winning dismissal of litigation alleging violations of federal proxy law and other state law violations in connection with the approval of Dow’s 1988 and 2012 stock-option plans.

  • Rohm & Haas in successfully resolving a federal district court law suit asserting breach of warranty and post-merger contract adjustments claims.

  • Union Carbide Corporation in successfully defeating an ERISA claim brought by Praxair.

  • Union Carbide Corporation and the Union Carbide Company Employees’ Pension Plan in amicably resolving an ERISA litigation concerning two group annuity contracts issued for the benefit of the pension plan, in part, by raising novel theories of relief that successfully withstood a motion of summary judgment.

  • LVNV on appeal to the Maryland Court of Special Appeals following a $39 million class action verdict (in a case tried by another firm) for collecting $3.7 million without an allegedly appropriate Consumer Debt Collection License (decision pending).

  • BHP Billiton in connection with litigation stemming from the company’s unsolicited $40 billion all-cash offer to acquire PotashCorp.

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Litigation Representations of Individuals

  • The directors of W.T. Grant in defeating claims brought by the Trustee in a groundbreaking case defining the contours of Rule 10b-5, as well as in a related SEC investigation, which resolved with no charges being brought against the directors.

  • A derivatives trader at a major Wall Street bank, the Board of Freddie Mac and the CFO of Kindred Health Care in SEC investigations.

  • Mark Messier in obtaining a significant arbitral award against the Vancouver Canucks.

  • The Vice Chairman of the firm in Dewey Ballantine’s Chapter 11 case in resolving all claims against him by the estate and in negotiating a global release under a confirmed plan.

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Representations of Government Entities and Industry Groups

  • The New York Superintendent of Banks in rehabilitating the Municipal Credit Union.

  • The New York Superintendent of Banks  in liquidating the New York branch of BCCI and collecting most of BCCI’s U.S.-based assets, including by successfully arguing for the broad authority and discretion of the Superintendent of Banks in a case before the New York Court of Appeals and overcoming a competing Section 304 Bankruptcy filing, a federal interpleader action and a U.S. government RICO forfeiture, thereby assuring all New York creditors were paid in full.

  • The PBGC (first outside counsel ever retained) in establishing its entitlement to terminate LTV’s pension plan in its first Chapter 11 proceeding.

  • The Bond Market Association in a report with respect to its unprecedented role in establishing the rules for clearing securities in the fixed-income markets following 9/11 and again after the Con Ed blackout.

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Constitutional Cases

  • The class plaintiffs in a major Federal District Court constitutional and civil rights action against the City of Chicago to address the discriminatory and unreasonable use of force by the Chicago Police Department.

  • Eagle Scout James Dale in case that went to the U.S. Supreme Court and that ultimately led the Boy Scouts to change their position regarding gay youth Boy Scout leaders.

  • Successfully represented a prisoner on death row in Georgia.

  • Successfully pursued a damages action on behalf of a minor child and U.S. citizen, who was illegally detained at an airport and sent out of the country by federal immigration agents based on concerns about her parents’ citizenship.

  • Successfully pursued a damages action on behalf of residents of New Haven, Conn., who were rounded up in an illegal immigration raid.

  • Won appeals establishing:

    • that state takeover statutes were unconstitutional based on the dormant commerce clause.
    • that the New York State gross receipts tax on oil companies was unconstitutional.
    • that represented pro se litigants were entitled to proceed in forma pauperis without a prior screening.
    • that prisoners had a right to file pro se briefs on their own behalf.
    • that segregated prisoners had a right to participate in congregational Muslim religious services.
  • As counsel appointed by the Appellate Division, First Department, brought constitutional claims on behalf of the patients at Bellevue Hospital that required their relocation to a newer and better mental health facility.

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Debtor Representations

  • Anglo Energy, Pan Am, Great Eastern Drilling, L.F. Rothschild, Inc., Kindred Healthcare, Bridge Communications, Empresa Eléctrica del Norte Grande, S.A. (Edelman) and Truvo in confirmed Chapter 11 plans.

  • The SIPC Trustee in three separate major SIPA liquidations including Adler Coleman, which included successfully defending a large fraudulent conveyance trial and appeal and conducting a groundbreaking investigation into the role of the mob on Wall Street.

  • Metalgeschellschaft in its worldwide out-of-court restructuring.

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Other Bankruptcy Litigations and Creditor Representations

  • Goldman Sachs or its affiliates in resolving significant litigation claims in the Enron, SemGroup, and Lehman and TXU Energy Chapter 11 cases, including negotiating the multibillion-dollar derivatives claims framework that was the centerpiece of the Lehman plan.

  • D.E. Shaw in resolving its large derivatives claims against Lehman.

  • The customers of Refco’s off-shore broker-dealer at trial in establishing their priority claim to $2.75 billion of assets, which became the centerpiece of the Refco plan.

  • The bondholders of Residential Capital in litigation and a mediation resulting in substantially increased recoveries.

  • The Official Creditors’ Committee in the Crystal Brands Chapter 11.

  • The Official Oil Industry Creditors’ Committee in the Texaco Chapter 11 case.

  • The secured bank group in Global Marine.

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  • Former Chairman, Committee on Legal Assistance, Association of the Bar of the City of New York
  • Chairman, Business Advisory Council, Washington Irving Public High School, New York City
  • Member, New York City Workforce Investment Board
  • Former Assistant Counsel, State of New York Commission on Judicial Nomination
  • Former Member, court-appointed mediation panels, Eastern District of New York and the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York


2020: co-author, “Supreme Court Sharply Limits Standing for ERISA Plaintiffs in a Decision With Far-Reaching Implications,” Cleary Gottlieb Alert Memorandum

2017: Chapter co-author, “Derivatives,” Business and Commercial Litigation in Federal Courts (Fourth Edition, Thomson Reuters and the American Bar Association Section of Litigation), with Carmine Boccuzzi, Roger Cooper and Rishi Zutshi

2011: Chapter co-author, “Derivatives Litigation,” Business and Commercial Litigation in Federal Courts (Third Edition, Thomson West)