Bezalel Stern’s practice focuses on commercial litigation, including litigation regarding complex business disputes, real estate and employment matters. Bezalel also advises and represents businesses and individuals in the fledging US cannabis industry with regard to licensing, regulatory, employment, and litigation matters, with a focus on cost-effective, long-term solutions.
Bezalel has represented a diverse array of clients in a wide variety of matters, including litigation stemming from alleged employer or employee misconduct, disputes related to literary rights, litigation and enforcement proceedings in the communications industry, and internal investigations. Additionally, Bezalel has represented real estate interests in negotiating and litigating commercial and multifamily residential transactions.
A Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers “Rising Star,” Bezalel is consistently able to analyze, identify and empathize with each client’s position. He is dedicated to balancing costs versus results when it comes to dispute resolution, and has a keen understanding of the business implications of the legal process.
Bezalel remains ever-mindful of maximizing his client’s legal expenses, always thinking about each client’s position and the impact a given approach will have on their bottom line. An outstanding written and oral advocate who is valued for clear and concise arguments, Bezalel is most appreciated by clients and colleagues alike for his resolute work ethic and unwavering optimism.
Prior to joining Kelley Drye, Bezalel served as a law clerk in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida. Before his clerkship, Bezalel was an associate in the New York office of a major global law firm.
Drafted and filed two Amicus Briefs on behalf of an unprecedented coalition of groups in support of Petition for Certiorari in Case No. 18-481, Food Marketing Institute v. Argus Leader Media
, arguing that the D.C. Circuit’s longstanding (mis)interpretation of the Freedom of Information Act’s Exemption 4 has allowed the improper public dissemination of “confidential” information submitted by persons to the government. 2019 WL 951418 and 2018 WL 6040480. This was the first time the Supreme Court heard arguments directly related to Exemption 4 of the Freedom of Information Act. On June 24, 2019, the Supreme Court reversed the Eighth Circuit, largely adopting the new Exemption 4 test recommended by our coalition. https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/18pdf/18-481_5426.pdf
Lead associate on litigation team which had filed a successful class action Complaint against the Social Security Administration. After defeating the Social Security Administration’s 12(b)(1) Motion to Dismiss, Steigerwald v. Commissioner of Social Security
, 2018 WL 454400 (N.D. Ohio Jan. 17, 2018), the Court certified a class covering an approximate 15-year period, and including over 100,000 individuals. Steigerwald v. Commissioner of Social Security
, 2018 WL 3524610 (N.D. Ohio July 12, 2018). On January 25, 2019, the Court granted our Motion for Summary Judgment, awarding summary judgment to the certified class. Steigerwald v. Commissioner of Social Security
, 2019 WL 329897 (N.D. Ohio Jan. 25, 2019).
Successfully represented Fannie Mae in defending against purported whistleblower claims on the district and appellate court levels. Herron v. Fannie Mae
, 861 F.3d 160 (D.C. Cir. 2017); 2016 WL 1177918 (D.D.C. 2016). Following these consecutive wins, District Court awarded our client $43,000 in costs for having to defend against the purported whistleblower's claims. 2018 WL 1036358 (D.D.C. 2018).
Represented global company in internal investigation regarding potential multi-million dollar defect in commercial property, drafting comprehensive report on the matter, and concluding the matter to the client’s satisfaction.
Doe v. Alternative Medicine Maryland, LLC
, 455 Md. 377 (Md. 2017)
Lead associate on successful appeal before Maryland Court of Appeals, reversing the trial court and granting client the right to intervene in case.
Levin Family Limited Partnership v. Greenberg Family Limited Partnership
, 2016 WL 7491511 (Md. Cir. Ct. 2016)
Lead associate and second chair in trial team representing limited partnership with a fifty percent ownership in a limited liability company owning substantial real property in suburban Maryland. After a bench trial in Montgomery County, Maryland, Business and Technology Court, successfully prevented the LLC from being judicially dissolved.
Lead attorney representing internet start-up who was allegedly hacked by a competitor. Obtained favorable settlement shortly following filing of Complaint in federal court.
Lead Kelley Drye associate representing telecommunications provider in litigation with ILEC regarding payment of fees. After prevailing on crucial claims before trial, case reached favorable settlement.
Named to 2018 Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll.
Recognized by Super Lawyers as a Washington D.C. "Rising Star," 2017-2019.