Mr. Higgins has coordinated and directed the multi-jurisdictional litigation defense for numerous energy clients in the MTBE litigation, involving both federal and state court matters. He has advised clients regarding state environmental regulatory schemes and litigation in multiple jurisdictions. He has also represented an elite university in a variety of premises liability matters, and provided regulatory and due diligence counseling to consumer products and dietary supplements companies.
Mr. Higgins’s representative matters and trials include:
- Gulf Oil Limited Partnership/Cumberland Farms, Inc. Mr. Higgins serves as the primary attorney for this matter, in which Goodwin serves as National Counsel for Gulf Oil Limited Partnership (Gulf) and Cumberland Farms, Inc. (CFI), branded and unbranded gasoline wholesaler and marketer, and wholesaler, retailer and marketer, respectively, in the defense of more than 50 cases brought by over 140 plaintiffs (consisting of state agencies, cities, towns, water districts and private water companies from 13 states) seeking property damages, remediation and monitoring costs for alleged groundwater contamination as the result of defendants’ use of the gasoline additive methyl tertiary-butyl ether (MBTE). Plaintiffs in these cases assert state law product liability and trespass and nuisance claims against the majority of the gasoline refining, distribution and marketing industry. We successfully removed the cases to federal court, and succeeded in having all cases transferred to the federal district court for the Southern District of New York, creating a massive consolidated litigation, MDL No. 1358. Mr. Higgins has represented Gulf, CFI and others in all proceedings before the multi-district litigation court, drafted motions to dismiss on substantive and personal jurisdiction grounds, motions for summary judgment, participated in the mediations, collected and reviewed company documents in response to discovery demands, and deposed and defended party, third party and expert witness depositions.
- Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. & Bank of America, N.A. Mr. Higgins first-chaired the defense of Countrywide Home Loans, Inc. in trials in 2011 and 2012. The first, which was held in Suffolk Superior Court in Boston, Massachusetts in November and December of 2011, involved predatory lending and negligent underwriting claims, resulting in a defense judgment for Countrywide. The second trial involved similar issues and was held in the Federal District Court for the District of Massachusetts in April and May of 2012, which also resulted in a defense judgment for Countrywide. In addition, Mr. Higgins has directed litigation strategy for Bank of America in a number of matters in New England brought by individual borrowers regarding mortgage loan origination and servicing issues. These claims include fair lending and predatory lending-based claims, private and state Attorney General lawsuits challenging subprime or "unfair" lending practices, challenging a variety of loan servicing and loan modification practices and challenging the propriety of foreclosure documentation practices.
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Mr. Higgins has successfully defended MIT in a variety of personal injury and premises liability matters.
Mr. Higgins is a member of the American Bar Association, Boston Bar Association, Maine State Bar Association and the District of Columbia Bar Association. In addition, he served on the Board of Directors for the Maine Children’s Alliance, which is a non-partisan children’s advocacy group.
Prior to joining Goodwin, Mr. Higgins worked as an associate at Arnold & Porter LLP in Washington, D.C.