Catherine E. Woltering

Partner

Columbus
T +1.614.462.2677
F +1.614.462.2616
New York
T +1.614.462.2677
F +1.212.589.4201

Overview

Catherine Woltering is a commercial litigator with in-depth experience handling complex contractual matters and business disputes. Catherine is thoughtful, aggressive, and committed to resolving issues for her clients, whether part of pre-suit negotiations or at any point throughout the litigation process. Her breadth of experience allows her to understand her clients’ business and legal needs and enables her to be a trusted counselor who can provide advice related to every aspect of an issue.

Catherine is frequently retained to advise clients in advance of an anticipated dispute or lawsuit, where she utilizes her communication, risk-assessment and management skills to make strategic decisions affecting the ultimate outcome.

Catherine’s experience includes representing a wide variety of individuals and entities including numerous financial services providers, a leading global timeshare company, a international manufacturer of weight-lifting equipment, the Official Committee of Tort Claimants (wildfire victims) in Pacific Gas & Electric’s bankruptcy in the Northern District of California, and almost a decade as one of the lead attorneys in the representation of Trustee Irving H. Picard for the SIPA liquidation of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC.

Catherine is routinely recognized for her ability to provide results in complex matters with high stakes, including accolades from Ohio Super Lawyers as a “Rising Star”; selected as a Columbus WISE Women “Rising Star”; Ohio Diversity Council’s “Most Powerful and Influential Women”; Columbus Business First: People to Know in Law, and Columbus CEO: Top Lawyers.

Select Experience

Litigation and Appellate Experience
  • Successfully represented leading retail company in collections action involving foreign perfume manufacturer, including advice on creditor rights in cross-border insolvency.
  • Successfully represented international metals company in several domestic collection actions.
BLMIS Liquidation Related Litigation and Appellate Experience
  • Served as trial counsel on the first of the Trustee's Madoff cases to go to trial, achieving a complete victory for the Trustee at trial.
  • Serves as a key member of the Trustee’s team investigating and litigating the Trustee’s claims against hedge funds, investment banks and other financial institutions and fiduciaries involving complex derivative and financial products.
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Experience

Litigation and Appellate Experience
  • Successfully represented leading retail company in collections action involving foreign perfume manufacturer, including advice on creditor rights in cross-border insolvency.
  • Successfully represented international metals company in several domestic collection actions.
  • Obtained the dismissal of a third-party administrator for a self-funded benefit program in a federal court action for negligence and breach of fiduciary duty claims under Employee Retirement Income Security Act § 502(a)(2) and 29 U.S.C. § 1109.
  • Resolved an intra-family trust litigation involving adult-adopted children who were not specifically identified in trust instruments executed nearly a decade before their births and were therefore subject to a retroactive Ohio statute that provided for different treatment than for those children adopted as minors. Following substantial negotiations, the parties reached an equitable and satisfactory settlement.
  • Successfully terminated manufacturing and vendor relationships for lead strength training equipment company, obtaining complete voluntary dismissal of preliminary injunction action claiming violations of Wisconsin franchise law and breach of contract.
  • Successfully represented pro bono plaintiff in obtaining favorable settlement in a § 1983 deliberate indifference to serious medical needs action with the State of Ohio following significant litigation and appeal.
  • Successfully represented large automotive manufacturer in interpleader action culminating in jury trial over the proper beneficiaries to an employee’s retirement plan benefits.
  • Successfully represented leading automotive manufacturer in interpleader action under 28 USC § 1335 obtaining complete victory in the form of an order for disbursement of funds and dismissal of claims for breach of contract, tortious interference and declaratory and injunctive relief.
  • Successfully represented plaintiffs in a declaratory judgment action regarding approximately $30 million in disputed estate and trust distributions. Following substantial litigation and negotiations, the parties reached an equitable and satisfactory settlement.
  • Successfully represented large regional hospital chain in interpleader action over the proper beneficiaries to an employee’s cash balance retirement plan benefits.
  • Defeated a shareholder derivative action in a ruling from the bench following a preliminary injunction and motion to dismiss hearing. The derivative action was designed to derail the merger of a firm client, IKON Office Solutions, with another office supply corporation, Ricoh. By defeating the action on its behalf, IKON Office Solutions was able to complete the merger, thus strengthening its presence in the global marketplace.
  • Represented numerous financial institutions against claims their collection efforts violated the Bankruptcy Code’s automatic stay and discharge injunction.
BLMIS Liquidation Related Litigation and Appellate Experience
  • Served as trial counsel on the first of the Trustee's Madoff cases to go to trial, achieving a complete victory for the Trustee at trial.
  • Serves as a key member of the Trustee’s team investigating and litigating the Trustee’s claims against hedge funds, investment banks and other financial institutions and fiduciaries involving complex derivative and financial products.
  • Authored numerous briefs on behalf of the SIPA Trustee in the bankruptcy, district and appellate courts, obtaining favorable rulings on significant case-wide issues such as the proper interpretation of Bankruptcy Code sections 546(g) and 550(a).
  • Authored Second Circuit appellate brief that successfully overturned decisions by the Bankruptcy Court and District Court in the Southern District of New York on the applicability of the presumption against extraterritoriality for recovery actions brought under Bankruptcy Code section 550. In connection with her work on this brief, Catherine was part of the team recognized by Global Restructuring Review for the “Most Significant Restructuring or Insolvency-Related Litigation” for 2019. The honor, announced at the 3rd Annual GRR Awards Ceremony in Barcelona, Spain.
  • Prevailed in briefing and arguing significant motions for the BLMIS Trustee, including motions for court approval of large settlements, motions in limine, motions to withdraw the reference, motions for interlocutory appeals, motions regarding the applicability of the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, motions to intervene in shareholder derivative actions involving BLMIS feeder fund investors and petitions for direct appeals to the Second Circuit.
  • Represented SIPA Trustee in cases investigating and litigating claims against hedge funds, investment banks and other financial institutions and fiduciaries involving complex derivative and financial products.

Recognitions and Memberships

Recognitions

  • Global Restructuring Review’s “Most Significant Restructuring or Insolvency-Related Litigation” award (2019) for her involvement in the litigation that led to the noteworthy extraterritoriality decision allowing for the recovery of international transfers for the victims of Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities LLC (BLMIS). The decision was issued in February by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York.
  • Columbus WISE Women "Rising Star" (2018)
  • Columbus Business First: People to Know in Law (2016)
  • Ohio Diversity Council's "Most Powerful and Influential Women" Award (2016)
  • Ohio Super Lawyers "Rising Star" (2014 to 2020)
  • Columbus CEO: Top Lawyers (2016)
  • American Bar Association’s Advocacy in Mediation Competition: National Runner-Up 
  • The Ohio State University Michael E. Moritz College of Law
    • Lawrence Negotiation Competition: Champion 
    • Michael Colley Trial Skills Competition: Two-Time Champion

Memberships

  • American Bar Association
  • New York State Bar Association
  • Ohio State Bar Association
  • Columbus Bar Association
    • Barristers Leadership Program 
    • Better LawyerEditor

News

News

Industries

Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, 2017
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, 2015
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio, 2009
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio, 2009
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, 2015
  • New York, 2014
  • Ohio, 2008

Education

  • J.D., The Ohio State University Michael E. Moritz College of Law, 2008; magna cum laude; Order of the Coif; Articles Editor, Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution, "Jack Ehleiter v. Grapetree Shores, Inc.," published 2008
  • B.A., Mathematics, Kenyon College, 2005, magna cum laude

Blog

In The Blogs

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Ninth Circuit Permits Lien-Voidance for Chapter 20 Debtors
By Catherine E. Woltering
November 17, 2015
Bankruptcy practitioners routinely advise secured creditor clients to file protective proofs of claim in bankruptcy proceedings despite those clients’ ability to ignore bankruptcy proceedings and decline filing claims without imperiling...
Read More ->