Jeffrey J. White

Partner

  • Overview

    Biography

    Jeff White provides counseling and dispute resolution advice for manufacturers and distributors. He is chair of the firm's Manufacturing Industry Team and regularly represents clients throughout the United States and globally. Mr. White is significantly involved with industry issues through his participation with groups such as the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and the American Bar Association's International Expansion and Cross-Border Transactions Subcommittee. In 2013, he created and launched the widely read Manufacturing Law Blog, which was one of the first blogs in the country to address legal issues facing manufacturers and distributors.

    Business to Business Dispute Resolution / Litigation

    Mr. White has represented several Fortune 50 manufacturers that sell products globally, including in the aerospace, chemicals, and consumer product markets to name just a few. He has experience in a wide variety of matters, including product-related class actions, product liability prevention and litigation, supply chain disputes (including with long-term agreements (LTAs) that range from hundreds of thousands of dollars to several billion dollars), intellectual property disputes, and environmental matters. Mr. White routinely uses his litigation and business experience to counsel companies that wish to assess and/or resolve business to business disputes with suppliers, vendors and other business partners without resorting to litigation. 

    Corporate Compliance / Outside General Counsel

    In addition to representing large global companies, Mr. White also serves as "outside general counsel" for several mid-sized, privately held companies, including several manufacturers and distributors that have business operations throughout the world. For instance, Mr. White is currently advising European manufacturers and distributors on the business, legal, and regulatory issues that arise from operating a U.S. subsidiary or otherwise doing business in the United States. His experience is wide ranging as he has provided business advice on issues such as product development, product recall, workplace safety/OSHA, contracting/terms and conditions, supply chain issues, and conflict minerals' compliance.

    Appellate

    Mr. White is past chair of the firm's Appellate Practice Group, which was honored in 2014 as Connecticut's premiere appellate group by the Connecticut Law Tribune. He has been involved in over 50 appeals and has argued before the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and the state appellate courts in Connecticut, New York and Maryland. Most notably, Mr. White successfully argued before the Connecticut Supreme Court in an antitrust case arising out of a proposed $1 billion waterfront project.

    Prior to joining Robinson+Cole, Mr. White clerked for the Honorable Ellen Ash Peters, retired Connecticut Supreme Court chief justice.

  • Experience
    • Experience

      Experience

        Products Liability

      • Successfully represented worldwide helicopter manufacturer in litigation that lasted over six years and arose out of double fatality heli-logging accident in British Columbia. The first phase of the litigation, which was filed in Connecticut, was a wrongful death case involving multiple defendants. In the second phase of the litigation, which was filed in Oregon, R&C represented the manufacturer in an contribution /indemnification action brought against the owner/operator of the helicopter. We reached a favorable settlement for our client.
      • Obtained, on behalf of a major engine manufacturer, federal court dismissal in a wrongful death lawsuit of claims that arose out of a crash of a MD600N helicopter in Turkey that resulted in the deaths of three passengers.
      • Successfully represented a major engine manufacturer in lawsuit that arose out of a crash of a Bell Helicopter in Iraq that allegedly was due to an in-flight engine failure. The plaintiffs, who were active duty Army officers, sustained significant injuries, and brought suit against our client and a major component manufacturer.
      • Defended one of the world’s leading manufacturers of advanced commercial and military helicopters in a wrongful death lawsuit arising out of the crash of Navy helicopter in Italy. The subject aircraft was being used in a routine instrument navigation training flight carrying a crew of four members of the U.S. Navy.

      • Successfully represented international manufacturer of airline components in lawsuit involving alleged exposure of employee to toxic chemicals. Plaintiff alleged that the exposure resulted in severe birth defects. The firm reached a favorable settlement for our client.
      • Successfully represented a North American manufacturer of paints and coatings in a commercial dispute arising out of the manufacture and sale of wood finishing products to a professional cabinet installer.
      • Successfully represented manufacturer/distributor of nutritional products sold both domestically and internationally in state court ephedra litigation brought by foreign citizen.
      • Successfully represented a worldwide seller of sports nutrition products in an action against a contract manufacturer and formulator of a protein drink after the product had to be withdrawn from the market due to contamination in the manufacturing process.
      • Represented one of North America's largest packaged food companies in a series of products liability lawsuits arising out of the nationwide recall of an allegedly contaminated food product.
      • Obtained voluntary dismissal on behalf of national retailer of climbing equipment in products liability action arising out of a fall off a cliff at a state park. As a result of the firm's litigation efforts, the plaintiff withdrew his action without any compensation.
      • Business Litigation

      • Representing Fortune 50 company in commercial dispute arising out of an agreement to end a 20-year lease of a 650-acre headquarters site.
      • Representation of insurer in action brought by homeowners that arose from a fire at their residence. Following denial of future insurance proceeds to the plaintiffs because of the concealment and fraud provision of the subject policy, the insureds brought a cause of action for breach of contract, negligence, negligent infliction of emotional distress, unfair trade practices, and bad faith. The firm was retained a few months before the start of jury selection and was tasked with completing all expert discovery and preparing the case for trial. After five days of jury selection and five days of evidence, a favorable settlement was reached for the client.
      • Representation of a multinational health care information technology provider in an injunction action intended to prevent a breach of contract by a state health care agency. Robinson & Cole obtained an emergency ex parte injunction to prevent the state agency from disclosing trade secrets proprietary to our client in response to a freedom of information request promulgated by a legal aid organization opposed to managed care in governmental health care programs. Subsequently, Robinson & Cole defended against the agency’s efforts to lift that injunction and a subsequent appeal. The matter ended while the appeal was pending when the legal aid organization withdrew its FOIA request.
      • Successfully defended Connecticut state marshal in case of first impression regarding whether a civil capias grants authority to enter a home without consent or exigent circumstances. No court in the country had conclusively resolved whether a civil capias is equivalent to a Fourth Amendment arrest warrant. After extensive briefing on the history and origins of the capias warrant, the District of Connecticut granted summary judgment in favor of the state marshal on the basis of the qualified immunity doctrine. Milner v. Duncklee, 460 F. Supp. 2d 360 (D. Conn. 2006).
      • Successfully defended a manufacturer of nutritional supplements against a proposed nationwide consumer product class action brought in California state court. The manufacturer, which distributes its product worldwide, was facing claims based on allegations that included product mislabeling and unfair trade practices, as well as violations of the California Consumers Legal Remedies Act (CLRA) and California-specific causes of action. We aggressively litigated the case in the early stages, and prior to any discovery production by the defendant or any depositions being conducted, the plaintiff agreed to a voluntarily dismissal with prejudice without any payment from the defendant.

      • Appellate

      • Reversed the criminal conviction of the president of a manufacturing company who the State of Connecticut prosecuted for allegedly violating Connecticut’s hazardous waste storage and disposal laws. The State convinced the trial court to charge the jury using the broader definitions of the “storage” and “disposal” in the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act instead of the definitions of those terms in the Connecticut General Statutes. The Connecticut Supreme Court held that the Connecticut definitions applied to the State’s charges, not the federal definitions. The court reversed the trial court and ordered a new trial. The decision is published as State v. Cote, 286 Conn. 603 (2008). The matter was favorably resolved without another trial.
      • Represented landowners in appeal to the Supreme Court in which the trial court's decision that commission possessed jurisdiction over multimillion-dollar, six-ton sculpture placed on property located in historic district was affirmed. Historic District Comm'n v. Hall, 282 Conn. 672 (2007).
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    • Professional Associations

      Professional Associations

      Connecticut Bar Association
      Officer (2011 - 2012)

      Hartford County Bar Association
      Co-Chair of Litigation Section (2013 - 2014)

      Defense Research Institute
      Appellate Advocacy Committee Leadership, Liaison to Product Liability Committee (2012 - present)

      American Bar Association
      Judicial Division, Council of Appellate Lawyers (2008 - present)

      American Bar Foundation
      Fellow (2013 - present)

      American Bar Association
      Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section, Vice Chair of Appellate Advocacy Committee, 2007 to 2010; First Circuit Editor of Appellate Advocacy Committee Newsletter, 2005 to 2009
      Section of Litigation, Appellate Practice Committee, Co-chair of Pro Bono Appeals Subcommittee (2008 - 2012)

      Connecticut Bar Association
      Appellate Advocacy Committee (2009 - present)
      Connecticut Council of Bar Presidents (2009 - 2010)
      Continuing Legal Education Committee (2006 - 2007)
      Past Chair of Young Lawyers Section

      Connecticut Bar Foundation
      Fellow (2014 - present)
    • Honors + Awards

      Honors + Awards

      Winner of the 2012 United States District Court Pro Bono Award for the District of Connecticut

      Winner of the 2011 Judge Maxwell Heiman Memorial Award, presented by the Hartford County Bar Association

      Winner of the 2010 Robinson+Cole Pro Bono Service Award

      Listed as a Second Circuit Litigation Star in Connecticut in Benchmark Appellate, 2013

      Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© in the area of Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants for 2018

      Listed in Connecticut Super Lawyers® since 2013 (Super Lawyers is a registered trademark of Key Professional Media, Inc.)

      Listed as a Rising Star in Connecticut Super Lawyers® from 2009 through 2013 (Super Lawyers is a registered trademark of Key Professional Media, Inc.)

      Listed as a Future Star in Connecticut in Benchmark Litigation for 2009

      Connecticut Magazine, "40 Under 40" Inductee

      Connecticut Law Tribune, recognized in 2012 New Leaders in the Law Yearbook

    • Community Involvement

      Community Involvement

      New England Air Museum
      Officer, 2011 to present; Board of Directors, 2010 to present

      Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center Foundation
      Corporator (2014 - present)

      Connecticut Supreme Court Historical Society
      Officer; Board of Directors; Co-Chair of Programs Committee

      Connecticut Supreme Court 200th Anniversary Planning Committee
      Member (along with four attorneys and three Supreme Court justices)

      Center for First Amendment Rights, Inc.
      Board of Directors, 2003 to 2008

      The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts
      Board of Overseers
  • NEWS + PRESS
    • Publications

      Publications

      "Administrative Procedures Are Focus of Insurance Case," published in Connecticut Law Tribune, co-authored with Kathleen E. Dion (9/14/2015)
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      "Successor Liability, Retaliation and Sanctions," co-authored with Kathleen E. Dion, published in Connecticut Law Tribune, appeared in the special supplement Connecticut Supreme Court Review 2014. The article reviews several Connecticut Supreme Court decisions in 2014 that have an impact on the business community. (9/22/2014)

      "Arbitration and Sexual Harassment in the Workplace," published in Connecticut Law Tribune, co-authored with Jamie M. Landry, appeared in the special supplement Connecticut Supreme Court Review 2013. The article reviews several Connecticut Supreme Court decisions in 2012–13 that have an impact on the business community. (9/30/2013)

      "Q&A with Robinson & Cole's Jeff White," published in Law360 (5/7/2013)

      "Harsh Words and Broken Leases," co-authored with Jamie M. Landry, published in Connecticut Law Tribune, appeared in the special supplement Connecticut Supreme Court Review 2012. The article reviews several Connecticut Supreme Court decisions in 2012 that have an impact on the business community. (9/17/2012)

      "Sending Your First Memo to a Client," published in For the Defense (4/2012)

      "Court Clarifies Personal Jurisdiction Rules," published in Connecticut Law Tribune, co-authored with Laura A. Torchio (12/12/11)

      "Favorable Ruling for Product Manufacturers," published in Connecticut Law Tribune, appeared in the special supplement Connecticut Supreme Court Review 2011. The article reviews several Connecticut Supreme Court decisions in 2011 that have an impact on the business community. (9/19/2011)

      "CPSC Launches New Database on Product Safety," published in Connecticut Business & Industry Association News, co-authored with John H. Kane (4/2011)
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      "Some Obvious and Not-So-Obvious Tips: Writing a More Persuasive Brief," published in For the Defense, a national publication of the Defense Research Institute (12/2010)

      "How to Keep Monsters at Bay," published in Connecticut Lawyer (11/2010)

      "Antitrust Act Ruling Limits Attorney General's Authority," published in Connecticut Law Tribune, appeared in the special supplement Connecticut Supreme Court Review 2010. The article reviews several Connecticut Supreme Court decisions in 2010 that have an impact on the business community. (9/2010)

      "For Corporations, Home Is Where 'Nerve Center' Is: High Court Defines 'Principal Place of Business,' Streamlines Litigation," published in Connecticut Law Tribune, co-authored with Laura A. Torchio (4/29/2010)

      "Bad News for Disgruntled Minority Shareholders," published in Connecticut Law Tribune, in the special supplement Connecticut Supreme Court Review 2009. The article reviewed several Connecticut Supreme Court decisions in 2009 that have an impact on the business community. (September 2009)

      "Legislative Efforts to Control Statutory Interpretation Threat or Equality Assurance?" published in TortSource (Fall 2008)

      "Shaping the Nature of Arbitration Cases," published in Connecticut Law Tribune, in the special supplement "Connecticut Supreme Court Review 2008." The article reviewed several Connecticut Supreme Court decisions in 2008 that have an impact on the business community. (September 2008)

      The History of the Connecticut Supreme Court, co-authored with Wesley W. Horton, coauthor of Chapters 6 and 7, which discusses the history of the Supreme Court from the 1860s through 1910 (2008)

      "The Butler-Park Court," published in Connecticut Law Review, co-authored with Wesley W. Horton, Esq., about the Connecticut Supreme Court during the Civil War period (Winter 2005)

      "Stamping Out the Reds: The Palmer Raids in Connecticut," published in Hog River Journal, about the wide-scale deportation of alleged members and sympathizers of the Communist movement in 1919-1920 (Fall 2005)

      "The Baldwin-Hamersley Court," published in Connecticut Bar Journal, co-authored with Wesley W. Horton, Esq., about the Connecticut Supreme Court from 1890 to 1910 (Fall 2005)

      "The Lawyer as 'Superadjuster': Erosion of Protections for Privileged Communications," published in For the Defense, co-authored with Gregory P. Varga, Esq., a national publication of the Defense Research Institute (5/2005)

      "The Colors of the First Amendment," published in The First Voice (3/2005)

      "The Impenetrable Wall?" published in The First Voice (6/2004)

      "Preservation and Spoliation of Evidence," published in A Practical Guide to Discovery & Depositions in Connecticut, co-authored with Rhonda J. Tobin; chapter covers the preservation and spoliation of evidence in the civil context in Connecticut state court; it is part of a new publication that is the most comprehensive coverage to date of discovery and deposition issues in Connecticut and was authored by leading practitioners at the largest firms in the state. The first edition was published in 2011, the second edition in 2013. (2010 & 2013)

      Co-wrote chapter on the Connecticut Supreme and Appellate Courts in The Appellate Practice Compendium (2012), published by the American Bar Association

    • Presentations

      Presentations

      "Corporate Law & Compliance Issues Facing Manufacturers," at the National Business Institute (NBI) webinar "Manufacturing Law" (12/15/2016)
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      "Complying with Conflict Minerals Laws: Global Best Practices for Manufacturers and Distributors," webinar, presented by the U.S. Department of Commerce's U.S. Commercial Service (10/19/2016)
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      "The Future of Manufacturing in Connecticut," moderator, at the Connecticut Business & Industry Association's (CBIA) 2016 Manufacturing Summit in Cromwell, Connecticut (10/14/2016)
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      "Key Considerations for Foreign Manufacturers That Wish to Sell Products to the United State," at the American Bar Association's Business Law Section Annual Meeting in Boston, Massachusetts (9/8/2016)
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      "Manufacturing Innovations," moderated the panel, held at Connecticut Business & Industry Association's (CBIA) 2015 Manufacturing Summit, "Made in Connecticut," in Trumbull, Connecticut (5/29/2015)

      "Manufacturing Innovations," moderator, at Connecticut Business & Industry Association's (CBIA) 2014 Manufacturing Summit (5/30/2014)
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      "All Natural Litigation: Strategies That Have Worked and Failed for Plaintiffs and Defendants," (2/19/2014)
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      "Warning! Follow These Best Practices for Crafting Warning Labels to Mitigate Litigation Risks," presented at American Conference Institute's 2013 Consumer Products Regulation & Litigation Conference; joining Mr. White on the panel was a regulatory and safety consultant who had spent decades working for some of the largest manufacturers in the United States and a consultant who specialized in human factors and product safety. (6/26/13)

      "Strategies for Winning a Complex Products Liability Trial," at Connecticut Bar Association Annual Meeting (6/14/2010)
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      "Careers in Civil Litigation," at University of Connecticut School of Law, Career Panel Series, served as moderator and speaker of five-person panel (4/13/2010)

      "The History of the Connecticut Supreme Court," at CBA Young Lawyers Section Appellate Committee Meeting at UConn Law School, co-presented with Wesley Horton, Esq., and Brendon Levesque, Esq. (11/24/2008)

      "A Contested Legacy: The Fitful Development of Freedom of the Press in the Americas," at Western Connecticut State University, Banned Books Week Event (10/3/2007)

      "The Rights of Young Adults: Your Rights and Privacy," at Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership Conference (5/5/2006)

      "Complex Civil Litigation In Connecticut: The Complex Docket, Class Actions, and MDL Proceedings," at Connecticut Bar Association, Advanced Practice Series, co-presented with Edward J. Heath, Esq., and Brian P. Henry, Esq. (4/3/2006)

      "The Rights of Young Adults: Do You Have a Right to Privacy?" at Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership Conference (3/12/2005)

      "Win Your Case Before the First Deposition: Strategies for Developing Your Case Through Private Investigators, Interviews, and the Internet," at 2010 National Defense Research Institute Product Liability Conference (4/7/2010)

    • News

      R+C in the News

      • September 25, 2017

        Robinson+Cole Hosts Market Briefing on Export Opportunities in Indonesia

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      • January 17, 2017

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Participate in NBI Manufacturing Law Webinar

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      • November 7, 2016

        Jeff White Participates in CBIA Manufacturing Summit and Conflict Minerals Laws Webinar

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      • October 6, 2016

        Robinson+Cole Sponsors World Affairs Council Luncheon Discussion on Brexit

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      • September 15, 2016

        Jeff White Presents at ABA Business Law Section Annual Meeting Regarding Manufacturing Issues

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      • October 28, 2015

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Publish Articles in Connecticut Law Tribune's Connecticut Supreme Court Section

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      • June 17, 2015

        Robinson+Cole Litigation Lawyers Participate in CBIA Manufacturing Summit

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      • November 11, 2014

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Support Military Families in Patriot Golf Day Tournament

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      • May 14, 2014

        Robinson+Cole's Appellate Group Wins Connecticut Law Tribune's Litigation Department of the Year Award

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      • May 9, 2014

        Jeff White Presents on 'All Natural' Designation: Trends, Court Rulings, and Litigation

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      • November 12, 2013

        Robinson & Cole Lawyers Promote Manufacturing Blog at SBANE's Prospectus 2013

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      • August 7, 2013

        Jeff White Speaks at Consumer Products Regulation & Litigation Conference

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      • July 31, 2013

        Hartford Lawyers Co-author Chapter on Preservation and Spoliation of Evidence for Leading Publication on Discovery Issues

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      • February 12, 2013

        Robinson & Cole’s Appellate Group Receives Top Rankings in National Publication

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      • January 9, 2013

        Jeffrey J. White Receives “40 Under 40: Class of 2013” Award

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      • December 10, 2012

        Wystan Ackerman, Ed Heath, and Jeff White are New Leaders in the Law

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      • October 31, 2012

        Appellate Attorneys Write Article Analyzing Significant Business Law Cases Decided By Connecticut Supreme Court In 2012

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      • September 27, 2012

        Appellate Attorneys Author Chapters in The Appellate Practice Compendium

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      • May 3, 2012

        Business Litigation Partner’s Column in National Publication Outlines the Elements of a First Client Memo

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      • January 6, 2012

        Attorneys Author Article on Personal Jurisdiction Rules in Products Liability Cases

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      • September 23, 2011

        Connecticut Law Tribune Publishes Article Analyzing Connecticut Supreme Court Case on Subrogation

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      • July 14, 2011

        Attorney Jeffrey J. White to Serve as Officer of Connecticut Bar Association

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      • May 4, 2011

        What Businesses Need to Know About the New Product Safety Database

      • February 10, 2011

        Attorneys Coauthor Chapter on Preservation and Spoliation of Evidence for Leading Publication on Discovery Issues

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      • January 25, 2011

        Litigation Attorney Chronicles the Trials and Triumphs of Young Lawyers in Monthly Connecticut Lawyer Column

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      • December 20, 2010

        Attorney Helps Bang the (Chocolate) Gavel

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      • September 27, 2010

        Recent Supreme Court Decisions Impact the Business Community

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      • June 17, 2010

        Robinson & Cole Attorneys Share Strategies for Winning Products Liability Cases

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      • December 18, 2009

        Robinson & Cole Becomes New Business Partner of the New England Air Museum

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      • September 18, 2009

        Robinson & Cole Attorney Examines Recent Supreme Court Decisions That Impact the Business Community

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      • November 10, 2008

        Robinson & Cole Appellate Attorney Publishes Article in ABA Publication TortSource

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      • October 10, 2008

        Robinson & Cole Appellate Attorney Authors Article for Connecticut Law Tribune

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      • August 4, 2008

        Robinson & Cole Attorney Recently Re-Appointed as a Vice-Chair of the Appellate Advocacy General Committee

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      • April 25, 2008

        Robinson & Cole Attorney Co-Authors Chapters in History Book

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      R+C News Releases

      • August 15, 2017

        Fifty-Nine Robinson+Cole Lawyers Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© 2018

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      • October 18, 2016

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers®

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      • October 19, 2015

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers®

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      • July 8, 2015

        Robinson+Cole Partner Elected to The Bushnell Board of Overseers

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      • October 17, 2014

        Robinson+Cole Lawyers Recognized by Super Lawyers

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      • March 4, 2014

        Jeffrey White Appointed Corporator of Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center Foundation

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      • June 21, 2013

        Local Organizations Recognize Robinson & Cole’s Pro Bono Service

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      • October 22, 2012

        Super Lawyers® Names 49 Robinson & Cole Attorneys to 2012 List and Recognizes 26 as Rising Stars

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      • January 3, 2012

        Robinson & Cole Announces Mentor of the Year Award Recipients

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      • December 6, 2011

        Robinson & Cole Announces Partner Promotions

      • April 14, 2011

        Robinson & Cole Attorney Jeffrey White Receives Judge Maxwell Heiman Memorial Award

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      • August 24, 2010

        Community Dedication Honored and Summer Associates Return to School

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      • July 6, 2010

        Jeffrey J. White Becomes Chair of the Young Lawyers Section of the Connecticut Bar Association

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