Areas of Focus
“My job is to anticipate issues for my clients, listen critically to their business and legal objectives, marshal facts to aggressively advocate on their behalf, communicate effectively, and provide holistic and practical counsel to them.”
Clients facing complex business disputes and companies at inflection points call on Michael Lasky for his astute judgment and experienced counsel. Michael is co-chair of the firm’s Litigation + Dispute Resolution Group and founder and chair of the firm’s Public Relations Law Practice. He is best known for advising fast growing companies whose key assets are people and ideas. These include social media, digital, public relations and integrated marketing communication firms. He also regularly advises financial services, transportation and e-commerce companies.
With deep industry knowledge and a clear understanding of his clients’ objectives, Michael helps them grow their businesses, optimize their profitability and achieve their next-stage goals. For decades, Michael has been the legal advisor to several leading industry organizations, including The PR Council. Always taking a proactive approach to devise client solutions, Michael crafts strong and effective employment contracts and shareholder and incentive arrangements. He is also an authority on legal and risk management best practices and issues that arise when talent moves between competitive organizations.
As a former federal law clerk in New York and experienced trial attorney, Michael possesses uncommon insights when it comes to assessing risks in and out of the courtroom. He knows what arguments work and how best to marshal evidence to advocate each client’s position both zealously and credibly. Michael also knows when to go to court and when to negotiate an effective business solution.
He has successfully tried and resolved cases and arbitrations involving corporate transactions, shareholder disputes, breach of post-employment restrictive covenants, contentious employment and executive compensation claims, and other business contract and commercial matters. Often disputes have turned on his strategic pre-litigation analysis, successfully proving of the parties’ intent and creative use of legal precedent. Capitalizing on his courtroom experience with how judges evaluate evidence and risk, Michael has also mediated more than 100 cases in the federal court in New York as a court-appointed pro bono mediator.
Michael is also a co-author of "Employment Restrictive Covenants and Other Post- Employment Restrictions” in the highly acclaimed treatise, Commercial Litigation in New York Courts.
Counseled a premier provider of worldwide executive transportation services in a punitive class action alleging that it misclassified drivers who were owners of independent operator companies under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Court approved limited settlement that substantially reduced our client's liability after limited discovery.
- Won a multi-million dollar case brought by an investor against our client, a French bank. The investor alleged fraud and that the bank aided and abetted its borrower by failing to disclose a pending class action against the borrower prior to our client, securing funding for a syndicated credit facility.
Negotiated a settlement of a contentious litigation brought by a senior executive against a creative communications agency and its founder. Involved hotly contested issues of equity ownership, re-purchase obligations, disproving the binding effect of certain employment related agreements, and breaches of fiduciary duty. Settled after mediation.
Established at trial that an inventor's financial stock selection model was not unlawfully derivative of a model developed by his former employer and further established that our client's model was itself a trade secret, awarding him substantial monetary damages for his new business. The case made law both in the trade secret and damages area in New York and is frequently cited as leading precedent.
Represented a multicultural minority-owned communications firm in connection with its strategic alliance with an equity investment.
Represented a technology-focused communications firm in developing template client contracts, negotiating master service agreements, and provide ongoing advice on interpreting agency client agreements, privacy issues and marketing law matters.
Counseled a global marketing agency in its formation and then guided it through its growth to become among the largest independent multidisciplinary public relations groups in U.S. In addition to acting as outside general counsel, our work has included advising on over 10 acquisitions.
Structured an incentive compensation and contract equity structure for an integrated marketing communications firm, designed to retain and incentivize key employees based on long-term company goals.
Insights + Events
- Event PRSA Counselors Academy 2024 Section Conference – Oasis in the Desert: Refreshing Your Agency in 2024 and Beyond | Counselors 202: Top Legal Action Items to Reduce Risk and Enhance the Value of PR Firms in 2024
April 9, 2024
- Publication O’Dwyer’s PR | The Use of Generative Artificial Intelligence in Political Campaigns
February 14, 2024
- Press Mention PRovoke Media | 2023 M&A Review: Smaller Deals, European Expansion & Public Affairs Drive Surge in Deals
January 4, 2024
- Press Mention PRWeek | Is Reproductive Loss Leave Offered at Your Agency?
November 9, 2023
- Event PRovoke Media’s 2023 Global Public Relations Summit | Public Relations: Action and Impact
November 6, 2023
- Report Davis+Gilbert 2023 Public Relations Industry Trends Report
November 6, 2023
- Event PR Council | “Agency Intel: 2023 M&A Trends”
October 18, 2023
- Event D+G Hosted Event with TobinLeff | State of M&A in the Marketing Communications Industry and What It Means for You
October 17, 2023
- Checklist Preparing for 2024: Top 12 Ways to Protect Your Firm
October 16, 2023
- Event IPREX | Americas Principals Roundtable
October 12, 2023
- View More
- Rutgers University (J.D., 1978)
- Editor-in-Chief, Rutgers Law Review
- Rutgers College (B.A., magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, 1978)
- Henry Rutgers Scholar
- The New York County Lawyers Association “The Boris Kostelanetz President’s Medal” 2013
- The Best Lawyers in America® 2013-2024, Litigation – Labor and Employment
- New York Metro Super Lawyers® 2007-2009 and 2013-2023, Business Litigation
- New York
Member, Davis+Gilbert Mentoring and Professional Development Committee
Board of Trustees and Executive Committee Member, Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts
Trustee, Rutgers School of Law ― Newark Alumni Association Board
Member, American Bar Association
Member, New York State Bar Association
Member, New York City Bar Association