Firm brings decades of experience advising on complex situations facing investment managers and their investment funds
John C. Ertman, a long-time litigator for the investment management industry, has formed and launched a new, conflict-free litigation firm, Ertman Dulis & Helisek PLLC. The firm has offices in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania and is uniquely focused on investment management litigation in both defense- and plaintiff-side cases. The firm’s client base includes mutual funds, private equity funds and hedge funds, spanning a broad spectrum of cutting-edge matters affecting asset managers and their investors.
The firm’s leadership comprises founding partners John Ertman, Caleb Dulis and Julian Helisek, all of whom were previously investment management litigators at global law firm Ropes & Gray. Mr. Ertman in particular is known for representing some of the world’s largest asset managers. He decided to start Ertman Dulis & Helisek to meet the significant demand for highly experienced litigators who can handle the entire range of sensitive matters facing investment managers and their clients in efficient and cost-effective ways. Ertman Dulis & Helisek is free of the conflicts that bar many other law firms from taking on certain cases, allowing the new firm to help investment managers in proactive plaintiff-side litigation in addition to handling defense-side work.
"Due to an increasingly competitive and regulated environment, investment managers today find themselves involved in or pursuing litigation to resolve complex business and investor issues far more frequently than they were just 10 years ago," Mr. Ertman said. "Our extensive experience in advising investment managers combined with our proven track record in high-stakes cases, makes us well suited to continue serving as trusted counsel to clients in support of their litigation needs."
Mr. Ertman, Mr. Dulis and Mr. Helisek bring nearly 50 years of combined experience in litigation, with complementary backgrounds working on cases pertaining to global investment managers:
- Mr. Ertman was a litigation partner at Ropes & Gray for 16 years prior to launching the firm with Dulis and Helisek. His career highlights include leading a successful industry-wide fight in 2013 against a plan by the City of Richmond, California to seize mortgage loans by eminent domain, which was opposed by PIMCO, BlackRock, and DoubleLine, among others. He also obtained a seminal ruling from the Delaware Supreme Court that for the first time blocked sophisticated buyers of companies from, in certain circumstances, suing sellers for fraud.
Ertman earned his Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School and graduated from Harvard College magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa.
- Mr. Helisek, a general commercial litigator, recently co-tried a two-month jury trial in New York state court against a now-defunct private equity firm on behalf of an institutional investor and obtained a $21.7 million judgment in a rare case of litigation involving a private equity fund that progressed to a jury verdict. He has handled matters involving breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, indemnification, tortious interference, post-judgment collection, complex construction disputes and theft of trade secrets.
He earned his Juris Doctor from The George Washington University Law School and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania magna cum laude. He also holds a Master of Science from the London School of Economics.
- Mr. Dulis is highly experienced in handling matters for investment fund portfolio companies, including most recently defending a mortgage origination company in a $130 million breach of contract action. He also has handled numerous corporate internal investigations into potential executive mismanagement and fraud. His clients have included private equity firms, financial services companies, pharmaceutical manufacturers and real estate firms, among others.
Dulis earned his Juris Doctor from The George Washington University Law School and graduated from Washington and Lee University magna cum laude. He also holds a Master of Arts in English from the University of Virginia.
About Ertman Dulis & Helisek PLLC
Founded in 2020, Ertman, Dulis & Helisek is a commercial litigation firm serving the investment management industry in defense- and plaintiff-side cases. With offices in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, Ertman Dulis & Helisek delivers comprehensive litigation services and pre-litigation counseling to investment managers, including, but not limited to, matters involving mutual funds, private equity funds and hedge funds. For more information, please visit ertmanlaw.com.