John R. Cuti
John R. Cuti is a seasoned trial lawyer and problem solver. He litigates defamation, First Amendment, commercial, securities-law and corporate governance disputes, criminal matters, and a wide range of civil rights issues. He often is engaged to assist clients to protect their reputations and prevent or mitigate negative media coverage. Before founding Cuti Hecker Wang LLP, John was a founding partner at a boutique litigation firm, and a partner at a national law firm. He also served as the General Counsel to two public companies.
J.D., New York University School of Law,
1990, cum laude
- Order of the Coif
B.A., University of Virginia,
1987, magna cum laude
- New York
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Southern, Eastern, Northern, and Western Districts of New York
Professional and Community Activities
- Director, National Center for Access to Justice
- Association of the Bar of the City of New York
- Board of Trustees, Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem
(2000 – 2013)
- Recipient, Champion of Children and Families Award, Legal Information for Families Today, 2007
- Recipient, Ethical New York Award, Common Cause, 2000 (awarded for significant achievements in ballot access litigation)
- Contract, employment, regulatory and other matters for sophisticated clients including IAC Interactive, Vimeo, Match.com, Martha Stewart Living, The Street.com, and GrubHub/Seamless, and individual corporate officers and directors. Matters include:
- Narayanan v. Sutherland Global Holdings – Successfully represented corporate director against company in breach of contract suit.
- Gregory Barton v. Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. – Successfully defended public company against claim by former executive for benefits under an ERISA plan.
- Brodsky v. Match.com – Successfully represented Match.com in a putative nationwide class action alleging RICO, consumer fraud, and contract violations.
- Cope v. IAC Search, LLC – Successfully represented IAC Search in litigation over $25 million acquisition of software company.
- Regulatory and Administrative Agency Proceedings for well-known New York City catering and party planning entities.
- Tax Incentives Investigation – Represented company in connection with government inquiry into State tax incentive program.
- Confidential DOJ Investigation – Represented senior financial services executive in connection with DOJ inquiry into trading practices at large financial institution.
- Moreland Commission Investigation – Represented parties in State government investigation regarding lobbying and ethical issues.
- Matter of Merrill Lynch – Represented a Merrill Lynch senior executive in inquiry by the New York Attorney General.
- Judicial Conduct – Represented New York State Court justices and judges accused of judicial misconduct.
Civil Rights Litigation
- 2020 Presidential Election – Participated with national team of lawyers advising state attorneys general on constitutional and state-law issues regarding election administration, ballot canvassing and counting, recounts, and election contests.
- Estate of Kurt Doerbecker et al. v. Nassau County et al. – Successfully represented estate and family of 23-year-old man who was fatally shot in the back of the head by a Nassau County police officer in a federal civil rights and wrongful death suit.
- Luke Herrine and Leo Gertner – Successfully represented NYU School of Law students in First Amendment challenge to subpoenas.
- Third Church of Christ, Scientist v. City of New York – Obtained a permanent injunction under the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act against the New York City Department of Buildings.
- Friends of the HighLine v. City of New York – Won a preliminary injunction on behalf of the New York City Council preventing the destruction of an elevated railroad line that has since been converted into a unique public park.
- Jacobs v. Seminole County Canvassing Board – Trial counsel in a challenge to the Seminole County absentee ballot application process as part of the statewide Democratic Party challenge to the 2000 presidential election in Florida.
- McCain v. Powers; Rockefeller v. Powers – Successfully represented 2000 and 1996 presidential candidates John McCain and Steve Forbes in constitutional challenges to New York’s ballot access laws.
- United States v. Martha Stewart and Peter Bacanovic – Trial counsel for Martha Stewart in a criminal trial alleging securities fraud and obstruction of an SEC agency proceeding.
- People of the State of New York v. Anthony Marshall – Trial counsel and Lead appellate counsel for Ambassador Marshall in fraud and larceny case regarding his mother, Brooke Astor.
- People of the State of New York v. Ronald Meadow – Obtained reversal of murder conviction in the Appellate Division, Fourth Department; represented defendant at retrial.
Advice Regarding Unwanted Media Coverage
- Brett Kavanaugh Hearings – Defamation and public relations advice to key figure in Brett Kavanaugh Senate Confirmation Hearings.
- Finance Executive – Defamation and public relations advice to prominent finance executive.
- General Counsel – Advised General Counsel of well-known company regarding successful effort to persuade major newspaper to omit him from negative story.
- High-profile Entrepreneur – Defamation and public relations advice to prominent founder of global business.
General Counsel Experience
MortgageIT Holdings, Inc.
Member of senior management team of publicly traded mortgage REIT (NYSE: MHL) that has since been acquired by Deutsche Bank.
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.
Member of senior management at publicly traded corporation with publishing, internet, television and merchandising businesses.