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Reed Smith Adds Marc Lackner as Partner - Former Bank of America Associate General Counsel Joins Financial Industry Group in San Francisco Office

(February 14, 2012, San Francisco) – Reed Smith LLP today announced the addition of Marc Lackner as a partner in its Financial Industry Group (FIG) in the firm’s San Francisco office.

Mr. Lackner was formerly an Associate General Counsel in the Legal Department of Bank of America, where he managed the Mortgage Litigation Group, providing litigation support for that institution’s Consumer Real Estate and Legacy Asset Servicing Divisions.

“Marc is already well-known and highly regarded at Reed Smith as a result of his collaboration with several of our attorneys for many years,” said Perry A. Napolitano, Chair of the firm’s Financial Industry Group. “His knowledge and expertise are exceptionally well aligned with the work the FIG currently handles for banks and mortgage companies, as well as for work we expect to be doing in the future for these financial institutions. We are quite excited that Marc is joining Reed Smith."

After Bank of America’s 2008 acquisition of Countrywide Financial, Mr. Lackner was responsible for the Bank’s combined mortgage litigation, which grew to more than 7,000 open litigation matters, including more than 200 class actions. He also managed the integration of the legacy Countrywide and BofA litigation groups, and participated in the 2008 resolution of Countrywide’s legacy “Sales Practices” attorneys general investigations and enforcement actions, which resulted in the first significant residential mortgage loan modification program and became the model for HAMP. In addition, Mr. Lackner assisted in the management of legacy Countrywide’s shareholder, MBS securities, and rep and warranty litigation, including issues of corporate separateness and successor liability.

When Bank of America shifted to an enterprise-wide litigation group in 2010 to deal with single plaintiff consumer litigation, Mr. Lackner managed the group, handling some 1,000 of the institution’s mortgage litigation matters, including class and regulatory enforcement actions.

“I am delighted to be joining Reed Smith, which has an excellent reputation and record,” said Mr. Lackner. “I already enjoy strong relationships with David Powell, Mary Hackett and other members of the firm, and am looking forward to working more closely with them on the matters that we have already been handling together for many years for BofA, with an eye toward expanding that work to other banking institutions.”

Reed Smith’s 220-lawyer Financial Industry Group is one of the largest practices in the world dedicated to representing clients in the financial sector. It provides representation in finance, commercial restructuring and bankruptcy/insolvency, financial services litigation, investment management and funds, financial services regulation, and structured finance. The firm has represented banks and financial institutions for more than 130 years, and this strong tradition continues today as it advises a majority of the world's top financial institutions in the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

Mr. Lackner joined Bank of America in 1997 as a Senior Counsel, assuming primary responsibility for the Bank’s Consumer Real Estate (“CRE”) litigation in 1999. In 2003, he became an Associate General Counsel and assumed management of the Bank’s Consumer Products Litigation Group, which provided litigation support to Consumer Products (CRE, Insurance Services, Deposit Products, ATM/Debit and e-Commerce), as well as Card, Consumer Special Assets (subprime real estate, sub-prime auto, auto lease, and manufactured housing), Dealer Financial Services (indirect auto lending), Vendor Management, Corporate Marketing and Communications, Tax, and Bank Regulatory. During this period, he also managed the integration of the MBNA litigation group and its litigation portfolio.

From December 2003 through March 2004, Mr. Lackner was BofA’s interim Director of Litigation, before resuming management of the Consumer Products Litigation Group. In 2004, he served as the Bank’s representative in its successful support of the California tort reform effort, Prop 64, as a member of the steering committee that drafted the state-wide initiative language.

Since 2000, Mr. Lackner has been the Bank’s primary National Bank Act preemption litigation resource in-house, including managing its amicus support in Watters v. Wachovia Bank, 550 U.S. 1 (2007) and Cuomo v. Clearing House Association, 557 U.S. ___, 129 S.Ct. 2710 (2009).

Mr. Lackner joined Bank of America in 1997 after 12 years at Steefel, Levitt & Weiss in San Francisco, where he was a member from 1990-1997, and Co-chair/Chair of the Litigation Department from 1994-1996. At Steefel, his practice focused on the representation of financial institutions, including Bank of America. Mr. Lackner's representation of Bank of America began in 1993 with his participation in the Bank's most significant jury trial, a $2.8 billion price-fixing class action. Although the alleged co-conspirators settled for $55 million, Bank of America refused to settle, resulting in a 10-week jury trial in San Francisco Superior Court and a defense verdict, affirmed on appeal.

A 1983 graduate of the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, Mr. Lackner is a member of the Board of San Francisco Legal Aid – Employment Law Center.

About Reed Smith LLP

Reed Smith is a global relationship law firm with nearly 1700 lawyers in 23 offices throughout the United States, the United Kingdom, Continental Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

Our Financial Industry Group is comprised of more than 220 lawyers organized on a cross-border, cross-discipline basis, and dedicated to representing clients involved in the financial sector, advising most of the top financial institutions in the world. As well as being authorities in their areas of law, FIG lawyers have a particular understanding of the financial services industry sector, enabling the practice to evaluate risks, and to anticipate and identify the legal support needed by clients. Lawyers in the group advise on transactional finance covering the full spectrum of financial products, litigation, commercial restructuring, bankruptcy, investment management, consumer compliance and bank regulation, including all aspects of regulatory issues, such as examinations, enforcement and expansion proposals. For more information, visit reedsmith.com/fig.