Russell D. Jessee is the leader of the firm’s Business Litigation Practice Group. His practice focuses on resolving disputes for business clients. Mr. Jessee litigates contract disputes for clients in the banking, insurance, healthcare, and gaming industries, among others. He defends creditors and debt servicers in consumer credit litigation.
He defends businesses in cases involving unfair trade practices, antitrust violations, business fraud, and other business torts. Most recently, he has been part of the national defense team representing a large pharmaceutical distributor defending lawsuits by state and county officials and agencies making claims about opioid distribution.
Mr. Jessee represents businesses in disputes before regulatory agencies. He pursues commercial debtors for commercial creditors, and he pursues medical providers who fraudulently submit claims to health insurers. Mr. Jessee also defends businesses in difficult employment cases, particularly those involving trade secrets and employment contract issues.
Mr. Jessee also has significant experience defending class actions. His practice extends to reviewing contracts during negotiations to increase protections for his clients and to help decrease litigation risk down the road. Before becoming an attorney, Mr. Jessee was managing editor of The Pocahontas Times, in Marlinton, West Virginia.
- Co-lead counsel for Fortune 10 defendant in more than 1,500 opioid lawsuits in state and federal courts nationwide; responsibilities include developing and implementing arguments for removal of state court suits to federal court
- Lead counsel for multiple banks, national creditors, and debt servicers in suits brought under the West Virginia Consumer Credit & Protection Act, the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and other consumer protection statutes
- Lead counsel for national bank, obtaining defense verdict, in jury trial of aiding and abetting fraud claim
- Lead counsel for video lottery operator in dispute with the West Virginia Lottery Commission over award of 10-year permits in a sealed-bid auction
- Represented seller of coal leases in multimillion-dollar sales contract dispute
- Represented manufactured housing retailer in antitrust dispute with a competitor
- Represented employer clients in employment contract, wage payment, and gender discrimination cases
- Obtained summary judgment on purported class claims for wage and hour violations and individual claim of discriminatory discharge
- J.D. Washington and Lee University School of Law
- B.A. Communication Studies, Virginia Tech
- Business Law Substantive Group, Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia
- Accredited Fraud Investigator, University of Charleston, 2009
- Graduated summa cum laude, Washington and Lee University School of Law, 1999
- Thomas Smith Purdie Honor Scholarship, Washington and Lee University School of Law, 1996-1999
- Phi Beta Kappa, Virginia Tech, 1988
- Board of Directors, Charleston Metro Division, Great Rivers Affiliate, American Heart Association
- Director, Friends of Pocahontas County Free Libraries
- West Virginia Bankers Association
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