Ben KlubesManaging Partner
Over a nearly 30-year career, Benjamin B. Klubes has established himself as one of the nation’s leading financial services and white collar enforcement lawyers. Mr. Klubes is Buckley LLP’s Managing Partner and represents financial services companies in federal and state enforcement agency investigations, examinations, and litigation, as well as in private civil and class action litigation. He also conducts corporate internal investigations and represents companies and individuals in criminal and civil enforcement matters, including multinational investigations relating to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).
Mr. Klubes has a robust enforcement and litigation practice representing bank and nonbank financial institutions in investigations and examinations by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), Department of Justice (DOJ), Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), state attorneys general, and financial regulators, as well as in private class action litigation involving the Fair Housing Act (FHA), Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA), Civil Rights Act, unfair and deceptive trade practices statutes, and privacy law claims.
He has represented a variety of mortgage lenders, mortgage servicers, and automobile lenders in enforcement, regulatory, and class action proceedings arising from the financial crisis, including matters involving the False Claims Act (FCA) and the Financial Institutions Reform Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA). Mr. Klubes has assisted in the implementation of fair and responsible lending and anti-mortgage fraud compliance programs for numerous financial institutions, and developed programs for FCPA and Bank Secrecy Act (BSA)/anti-money laundering (AML) compliance. He represents corporations and individuals in criminal and related civil enforcement matters, including FCPA, BSA, and criminal FCA actions.
Representative matters include:
Representation of three top-20 banks (U.S. Bank, Regions Bank, and BB&T) in separate successful resolutions of FCA investigations concerning FHA lending, reaching agreements with the DOJ, various U.S. Attorneys’ Offices, and HUD, totaling approximately $335 million that included no admissions of liability, no administrative sanctions, no prospective relief, and a settlement payment in one case that was the lowest amount paid by any bank in this type of matter
Representation of Flagstar Bank in the first CFPB enforcement action regarding the CFPB’s mortgage servicing rules that resulted in an administrative consent order settlement for $37.5 million relating to default servicing loss mitigation practices
Representation of Citigroup Inc. and Associates First Capital Corp. in extensive litigation with the Federal Trade Commission in one of its largest consumer protection resolutions at the time (a total of $240 million in redress resolving FTC and consumer class actions)
Representation of several major bank and nonbank mortgage and automobile lenders in connection with CFPB and DOJ fair lending examinations and investigations, resulting in multiple nonpublic supervisory resolutions
Representation of Wells Fargo in Mayor and City Council of Baltimore v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. (D. Md. 2008), where we obtained repeated dismissals of an FHA action by the city against the bank
Mr. Klubes also represents corporations and individuals in criminal and related civil enforcement matters, including FCPA, BSA, and criminal FCA actions:
Representation of Universal Entertainment Corporation (UEC), a large Japanese gaming company, and its subsidiary Aruze USA, Inc., in FCPA-related litigation brought by Wynn Resorts, Ltd, involving multi-billion dollar claims and related parallel matters that resulted in a $2.6 billion settlement for clients UEC and Aruze USA, Inc. a month before trial
Representation of former Director of Security for the United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence in connection with a three-count false statement indictment involving alleged misrepresentations to the FBI regarding his contacts with the media (United States v. James Wolfe, No. 18-CR-101 (KBJ) (D.D.C. 2018)
Representation of a Chief Executive Officer in a multi-jurisdictional investigation by the DOJ including potential FCPA violations and United Kingdom's Serious Fraud Office for alleged violation of the Prevention of Corruption Act of 1906
Mr. Klubes was ranked by Chambers USA (2010-2020) as a leading lawyer in Financial Services Regulation: Consumer Finance (Litigation) and in Financial Services Regulation: Banking (Enforcement & Investigations), where clients described him as “a very cerebral and thoughtful lawyer” with “a wealth of expertise and insight into key industry issues.” “A true business partner for us ... terrific at solving a problem ... with an ability to remain calm in a time of crisis.” In addition, Chambers USA named him a Recognized Practitioner in White-Collar Crime & Government Investigations. Mr. Klubes has been recognized in Legal 500 for Financial Services Litigation, Financial Services: Regulation, and Corporate Investigations and White-Collar Criminal Defense. Benchmark Litigation 2019 named him as a top practitioner in White Collar and General Commercial Litigation. He has been recognized as an exceptional attorney by Best Lawyers in America both for White Collar Criminal Defense and Banking and Finance for the past seven years, and was named Lawyer of the Year 2021 for Litigation - Banking and Finance. He has also been recognized by Super Lawyers (2010-2020) for Banking.
Mr. Klubes is a former Barrister in the Edward Bennett Williams Inn of Court, and in 2016, he was named a Fellow of the American College of Consumer Financial Services Lawyers. He serves as a Steering Committee Member of the English-American Litigation Forum, and formerly served as Chair of the National Council for Arts and Sciences, Columbian College, The George Washington University, and as a board member of the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs.
Mr. Klubes is a co-author of Consumer Financial Services, a leading treatise in the area, and has written numerous articles on a wide range of legal topics. He is a frequent speaker on enforcement, litigation, examination, and compliance issues regarding the consumer financial services industry.
Prior to joining Buckley, Mr. Klubes was a Partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, and served as an Assistant Independent Counsel from 1995 through 1997. He received his J.D. from Harvard University and his B.A. from The George Washington University.