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Michael D. Hausfeld

Michael D. Hausfeld, widely recognized for his leadership on competition matters and his groundbreaking results in human rights law, is the Chairman of Hausfeld LLP.

His career has included some of the largest and most successful class actions in the fields of human rights, discrimination and antitrust law. He has an abiding interest in social reform cases and was among the first lawyers in the U.S. to assert that sexual harassment was a form of discrimination prohibited by Title VII; he successfully tried the first case establishing that principle. He represented Native Alaskans whose lives were affected by the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill. Later, he negotiated a then-historic $176 million settlement from Texaco, Inc. in a racial-bias discrimination case. In the landmark O’Bannon v. NCAA litigation, Michael represented a class of current and former Division I men's basketball and FBS football players against the NCAA and its member institutions, based on rules foreclosing athletes from receiving compensation for the use of their names, images, and likenesses. At the conclusion of a three-week bench trial, the Court determined that the NCAA had violated the antitrust laws and issued a permanent injunction as requested by the plaintiffs. Immediately following the decision, Michael was named AmLaw Litigation Daily’s “Litigator of the Week,” citing the “consensus among courtroom observers [was] that Michael Hausfeld…got the best of a parade of NCAA witnesses at trial.” Law360 dubbed the trial team led by Michael as “Legal Lions,” citing the firm’s historic victory over the NCAA. 

In Friedman v. Union Bank of Switzerland, Michael represented a class of Holocaust victims whose assets were wrongfully retained by private Swiss banks during and after World War II. The case raised novel issues of international banking law and international human rights law. In a separate case, he also successfully represented the Republic of Poland, the Czech Republic, the Republic of Belarus, the Republic of Ukraine and the Russian Federation on issues of slave and forced labor for both Jewish and non-Jewish victims of Nazi persecution. He represented Khulumani and other NGOs in a litigation involving the abuses under apartheid law in South Africa.

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National Law Center George Washington University, J.D., with honors, 1969; Member, Order of the Coif

Brooklyn College, B.A. cum laude,1966

Bar Admissions

District of Columbia

New York

Affiliations & Memberships

Ranked in Band 1 by Chambers & Partners for Antitrust: Plaintiff - Nationwide, 2017-2019

Recognized Practitioner by Chambers & Partners for Sports Law - Nationwide, 2019

Outstanding Antitrust Litigation Achievement in Private Law Practice (In re Vitamin C Antitrust Litigation), American Antitrust Institute (2018)

Washington, DC Super Lawyer, 2007-2019

Named by The Legal 500 as a "Leading Lawyer" in Antitrust, 2011-2019

Named a Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyer by the Lawdragon 500, 2019

Co-Chair - ABA Civil Redress Task Force, 2011-2012 and Civil Redress Committee, 2012-2013

American Friends of Hebrew University, Torch Of Learning Award, October 2012

Member, Editorial Board - Global Competition Litigation Review, 2011

Member - ABA International Cartel Task Force, 2010

Named by The Ethisphere Institute in a short list of “attorneys who matter” in the field of corporate compliance, 2009

Cited in 2009 Chambers USA, in the Products Liability category

Named to SmartCEO Magazine Legal Elite 2009 List

Cited by GQ magazine as one of “the 50 Most Powerful People in DC,” 2007

Named in The Lawyer’s 2007 “International World-shakers” list of 40 international lawyers “making waves” in the UK

100 Most Influential Lawyers, The National Law Journal, 2006

Plaintiffs Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America

Simon Wiesenthal Center Award for Distinguished Service

Named by Legal Times among 30 "Visionaries" in the Washington legal community, 2008

Adjunct Professor, George Washington University Law School, 1996-1998

Simon Wiesenthal Center Award for Distinguished Service

Named by Legal Times Fierce Sister Award, for work on the Japanese Comfort Women case, 2007

B’Nai Brith Humanitarian of the Year Award, 2002

U.S. Department of Energy Human Spirit Award, presented “in tribute to a person who understands the obligation to seek truth and act on it is not the burden of some, but of all; it is universal.”

Named repeatedly by Lawdragon magazine as one of the 500 leading lawyers in the United States

Taught in Georgetown University Law Center, 1980-1987

Member, Board of Editors, George Washington Law Review (1968-1969)

News & Press

The Toughest Lawyer in America Is On Your Side, Neal Gabler, Playboy Magazine, February 2015. 

Gangster Bankers - Too Big to Jail, Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone Magazine, February 2013

UBS Mea Culpa May Give Libor Antitrust Plaintiffs Upper Hand, Max Stendahl, Law360, December 2012

DOJ Heralds 'Robust' UBS Deal; Gibson Dunn on Defense, Mike Scarcella, The AmLaw Litigation Daily, December 2012

Documents May Boost Civil Suits - Revelations That Rate-Rigging Succeeded Could Prove Expensive to Banks Facing Litigation, Dana Cimilluca and Jean Eaglesham, Wall Street Journal, December 2012

Banks Facing New Wave of Mortgage Lawsuits, Forrest Jones, Moneynews, December 2012

Where There's a Will, There's a Way, The American Lawyer, March 2012

The Great Gamble, Global Competition Review, March 2012


“Litigating Indirect Purchasers Claims: Lessons for the EU from the U.S. Experience,” by Michael D. Hausfeld, Irving Scher, and Laurence Sorkin. Antitrust Magazine, Fall 2017.

“Damage Class Actions After Comcast: A View from the Plaintiffs’ Side,” by Michael D. Hausfeld and Irving Scher. Antitrust Magazine, Spring 2016.

“Antitrust Class Proceedings – Then and Now,” by Michael D. Hausfeld, Gordon C. Rausser, Gareth J. Macartney, Michael P. Lehmann, Sathya S. Gosselin, Research in Law and Economics (Vol. 26, 2014) (Recipient of Concurrences’ 2015 Antitrust Writing Award for Private Enforcement (Academic) Category).

"The Business of American Courts in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum." By Michael Hausfeld and Kristen Ward. Jurist - Sidebar, October 2012.

"Prosecuting Class Actions and Group Litigation." By Michael Hausfeld and Brian Ratner, et al., World Class Actions, Ch. 26., September 2012.

"Private Enforcement of Antitrust Law in the United States, A Handbook - Chapter 4: Initiation of a Private Claim." By Michael Hausfeld and Brent Landau, et al., 2012.

"The Importance of Private Competition Enforcement in Europe." Michael D. Hausfeld and Swathi Bojedla. Hackney Publications: Concussion Litigation Reporter, Vol. 1, No. 1, July 2012.

"CAT-astrophe: The Failure of "Follow-On" Actions." Michael D. Hausfeld, Brent W. Landau, Sathya S. Gosselin. American Bar Association's International Cartel Workshop, February 2012.

"Private Enforcement in Competition Law: An Overview of Developments in Law and Practice in the US and Europe." Michael D. Hausfeld and Ingrid Gubbay, Bergamo University, July 2011.

"The Contingency Phobia - Fear Without Foundation," Global Competition Litigation Review, Issue 1, January 2011.

“Competition Law Claims – A Developing Story.” The European Antitrust Review 2010.

"Initiation of a Private Claim," International Handbook on Private Enforcement, 2010.

“The United States Heightens Plaintiff’s Burden of Proof on Class Certification: A Response.” Global Competition Litigation Review, Volume 2 Issue 4/2009.

“Global Enforcement of Anticompetitive Conduct.” The Sedona Conference Journal, Fall 2009.

“Observations from the Field: ACPERA’s First Five Years.” The Sedona Conference Journal, Fall 2009.

“Twombly, Iqbal and the Prisoner’s Pleading Dilemma.” Law360, October 22, 2009.

“The Value of ACPERA.” Law360, June 2, 2009.

“Collective Redress for Competition Law Claimants.” The European Antitrust Review 2008.

“Managing Multi-district Litigation.” The Antitrust Review of the Americas 2008.

“A Victim’s Culture.” European Business Law Review, 2007.

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