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. Before joining MSD, Terry acted as the firm administrator at one of the nation’s preeminent plaintiffs’ litigation law firms.

Several organizations have recognized Terry’s accomplishments and dedication to the practice of law. In 2014, Wittenberg University, Terry’s alma mater, presented him the Outstanding Young Alumnus Award. In 2015, Terry’s peers in the Cincinnati legal community awarded him the Cincinnati Bar Association Young Lawyers Section Professionalism Award. He has been designated an Ohio Super Lawyers Rising Star each year from 2014 through the present – a distinction awarded to only 2.5% of all attorneys in Ohio under the age of 40.


“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 of opposing parties. We have the 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.”

  • 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).
  • Ohio
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of Ohio
  • American Bar Association
  • Cincinnati Bar Association
  • Ohio State Bar Association
  • The Potter Stewart American Inn of Court
  • Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Lansing, Michigan
    • J.D. - 2009
  • Wittenberg University
    • 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)
  • Ohio Super Lawyers Rising Star each year from 2014 through the present
  • 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 (2014-2019)
  • 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)
  • Terence Coates & W.B. Markovits, Non-Competition Agreements in Ohio: When the World Ends…, All-Ohio Legal Forum, Cleveland, OH (Aug. 24, 2017)
Recognized by Best Lawyers 2020
Recognized by Best Lawyers 2020
Rated By Super Lawyers 2021