TERENCE R. COATES
- Managing Partner
- Complex Commercial Litigation
- Class Action & Litigation
- Sports & Entertainment Law
As the youngest of six children, Terry Coates, the firm's managing partner, has always been comfortable in chaotic environments. Terry focuses his practice on complex commercial litigation, class action litigation, and sports & entertainment law.
Data Breach & Consumer Protection Class Actions
Terry is Ohio's premier data breach/cybersecurity class action attorney for plaintiffs. He seeks to protect individuals' confidential personal and medical information through data breach/cybersecurity class actions, and currently is participating as a member of counsel for plaintiffs in over 50 data breach class actions pending in various state and federal courts around the country. Recently, he often is appointed Interim Co-Lead Counsel for plaintiffs in data breach cases, including the following recent cases:
- Vansickle v. C.R. England, Inc., No. 2:22-cv-00374 (D. Utah);
- Migliaccio v. Parker Hannifin Corp., No. 1:22-CV-00835 (N.D. Ohio);
- Sherwood v. Horizon Actuarial Services, LLC, No. 1:22-cv-1495 (N.D. Ga.); and,
- Tracy v. Elekta, Inc., No. 1:21-cv-02851-SDG (N.D. Ga.).
Furthermore, Terry represents plaintiffs in consumer protection class actions, including several class action cases pending against treadmill companies for allegedly overstating the continuous duty horsepower capacity of treadmill motors. Two of those cases have resulted in favorable settlements for class members: Walker v. Nautilus, Inc., No. 2:20-cv-3414 (S.D. Ohio) ($4.25 million common fund settlement plus one year of an interactive fitness app that was valued at an additional $150 per class member); and, Bechtel v. Fitness Equipment Services LLC, No. 1:19-cv-00726 (S.D. Ohio) ($3.65 million common fund settlement plus a $100 gift card).
Terry and his firm are consistently appointed lead counsel in class action and complex matters, including recently being approved as class counsel in an over 20-year-old ERISA class action that resulted in a settlement valued at over $742 million: Shy v. Navistar International Corp., No. 92-cv-0333-WHR (S.D. Ohio).
Sports & Entertainment
Terry has long fought for artists and athletes' rights. His representation began over a decade ago protecting then current and former NCAA athletes' name, image, and likeness issues having worked extensively with high-profile athletes, including several NBA Hall of Famers, and fought for NCAA athlete's NIL rights in the landmark NCAA athlete NIL case, In re NCAA Student-Athletes Name & Likeness Licensing Litigation, No. 09-1967, United States District Court, Northern District of California; see also O'Bannon v. NCAA, 802 F.3d 1049 (9th Cir. 2015) (Terry was personal counsel for NCAA, Olympic, and NBA legend Oscar Robertson and worked on discovery responses for NBA legend Bill Russell; the case resulted a $40 million settlement with Electronic Arts and Collegiate Licensing Company and the Court issuing a permanent injunction against the NCAA for unreasonably restraining trade in violation of antitrust law). Terry represents several recording artists who have been signed to major record labels. Terry acted as lead counsel in challenging the Ohio High School Athletic Association's Competitive Balance measure in Roger Bacon High School v. Ohio High School Athletic Association, No. A1804426 (Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas, Ohio), which resulted Roger Bacon receiving a temporary restraining order against the OHSAA and then in a settlement thereby modifying the Competitive Balance measure. The Roger Bacon case was the only known successful challenge to a state interscholastic athletic association's competitive balance rules.
"I am motivated by the fact that we've established a firm that provides our clients with top-notch legal representation, but that remains quick and nimble so that we're able to take on even the largest defendants. We have the established track record of successfully representing our clients in cases against some of the largest companies in the country."
"We've put together a stable of attorneys with decades of experience in some of the country's most complex class action and commercial litigation cases. We supplement our attorneys' extensive litigation experience with the belief that there is no substitute for working harder than your opponent. This drives us to constantly seek favorable solutions for each of our clients' legal disputes."
Other Representative Cases
- Williams v. Duke Energy, Case No. 1:08-cv-00046, United States District Court, Southern District of Ohio (represented class of energy consumers against energy provider in complex antitrust and RICO class action resulting in the court granting final approval of an $80.875 million settlement in 2016);
- In re Fannie Mae Securities Litigation, Case No. 1:04-cv-1639, United States District Court, District of Columbia (representing Ohio public pension funds as Lead Plaintiffs in Section 10(b) securities class action litigation resulting in a $153 million court-approved settlement in 2014);
- In re NCAA Student-Athlete Name & Likeness Licensing Litigation, Case No. 09-1967, United States District Court, Northern District of California (represented NCAA, Olympic, and NBA legend, Oscar Robertson, in antitrust claims against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), Collegiate Licensing Company (CLC), and Electronic Arts (EA) leading to a $40 million settlement with EA and CLC and the Court issuing a permanent injunction against the NCAA for unreasonably restraining trade in violation of antitrust law);
- Collins Inkjet Corp. v. Eastman Kodak Company, Case No. 1:13-cv-0664, United States District Court, Southern District of Ohio (trial counsel for Collins in an antitrust tying claim resulting in a preliminary injunction against Kodak – a decision that was affirmed by the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals: Collins Inkjet Corp. v. Eastman Kodak Co., 781 F.3d 264 (6th Cir. 2015));
- Day v. NLO, Inc., Case No. C-1-90-67, United States District Court, Southern District of Ohio (Class Counsel for certain former workers at the Fernald Nuclear weapons facility; the medical monitoring program continues);
- In re Toyota Motor Corp. Unintended Acceleration Marketing, Sales Practices, & Products Liability Litigation, MDL No. 2151, United States District Court, Southern District of California (represented plaintiffs and prepared class representatives for deposition testimony resulting in a court-approved settlement valued in excess of $1.5 billion); and,
- Bowling v. Pfizer, Inc., Case No. C-1-95-256, United States District Court, Southern District of Ohio (Class Counsel for recipients of defective mechanical heart valves including continued international distribution of settlement funds to remaining class members).
- U.S. District Court Northern District of Ohio
- U.S. District Court Southern District of Ohio
- U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan
- U.S. District Court District of Colorado
- U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit
- Cincinnati Bar Association
- Ohio State Bar Association
- The Potter Stewart American Inn of Court
- Ohio Association for Justice
- Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Lansing, Michigan
- J.D. - 2009
- Wittenberg University, Springfield, Ohio
- B.A. - 2005
- Wittenberg University Outstanding Young Alumnus Award (2014)
- Cincinnati Bar Association, Young Lawyers Section Professionalism Award (2015)
- JDRF Bourbon & Bow Tie Bash, Young Professional (Volunteer) of the Year for the Flying Pig Marathon (2016)
- Cincinnati Business Courier, Forty Under 40, Class 2019
- Best Lawyers® in America, Commercial Litigation (2019 through the present)
- Ohio Super Lawyers Rising Star each year from 2014-2022
- Cincinnati's Finest, Cincinnati Cystic Fibrosis Foundation (2020)
- Cincinnati Academy of Leadership for Lawyers (CALL), Class XXI (2017)
- Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber of Commerce C-Change Class 9, Participant (2014)
- Cincinnati Athletic Club, Vice President of the Board (2014-2015)
- Cincinnati Athletic Club, President of the Board (2015-2017)
- Cincinnati Bar Association, Board of Trustees, Trustee (2019-present)
- Cincinnati Bar Association, Member Services & Development Committee (2014-present)
- Clermont County Humane Society, Board Member (2014-2017)
- Clermont County Humane Society, Legal Adviser (2017- present)
- High School Mock Trial, Legal Adviser (2013-2016)
- St. Peter in Chains Parish Council (2015-2017)
- Cincinnati Bar Association, Board of Trustees, Executive Committee (2021-2022)
- Terence Coates & W.B. Markovits, Non-Competition Agreements in Ohio: When the World Ends…, All-Ohio Legal Forum, Cleveland, OH (Aug. 24, 2017)
Associations & Awards