Lee Applebaum

Throughout his nearly 30-year legal career, Lee Applebaum has worked with regional and national clients on a broad spectrum of business and litigation matters.  His current practice focus is two-fold: appellate litigation and mediation.

He clerked in Pennsylvania’s Superior Court for the Honorable Phyllis W. Beck, and has argued appeals before the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, in the Supreme Courts of Pennsylvania and New Jersey, in Pennsylvania’s Superior and Commonwealth Courts, and in New Jersey’s Appellate Division.

Lee has been a Judge Pro Tempore with Philadelphia’s Commerce Court since 2006, and has served as a mediator and arbitrator.  He has also written on the subjects of mediation and arbitration.

He is widely published on a number of legal topics, including the critical relationship between lawyers and their clients. Lee is locally and nationally recognized as one of the leaders in promoting the development of specialized business courts in the United States, and is among only a handful of lawyers honored as a charter member of the American College of Business Court Judges.

Representative Matters

  • Represented a condominium board before the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, successfully arguing that the board’s decision should be governed by the Business Judgment Rule, reversing the Superior Court.
  • Successfully represented a quasi-government entity in the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit where the Court affirmed a judgment in the client’s favor based upon res judicata and collateral estoppel.
  • Successfully argued before the Superior Court of Pennsylvania that there was no coverage under an insurance policy based upon the total pollution exclusion.
  • Successfully argued before the Superior Court of Pennsylvania that the trial court erred in sending the case to arbitration.
  • Represented numerous clients since 2006 in zoning appeals to the Commonwealth Court, including reversals of adverse lower court and Zoning Board decisions.
  • As a mediator, Lee has successfully mediated matters to resolution involving real estate disputes, sales of businesses, internal business disputes, breach of contract claims, accounting malpractice, insurance coverage, and tortious inference claims.

Education

  • B.A. Religious Studies, University of Pennsylvania, 1980
  • J.D., University of Maryland School of Law, 1987
    With Honors
  • NASD, Arbitrator Training, 2007
  • Good Shephard Mediation Program, Mediation Training, 2012

Bar and Court Admissions

  • Pennsylvania
  • New Jersey
  • United States District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Pennsylvania and New Jersey
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

Memberships

  • American College of Business Court Judges
  • Judge Pro Tempore, Commerce Case Management Program
  • American Bar Association, Judges Initiative Committee, Co-Chair (2014-2017)
  • University of Maryland School of Law’s Journal of Business and Technology Law, advisor
  • American Bar Association
    • Subcommittee on Business Courts, co-chair  (2007-2010)
    • Subcommittee on Business Courts, vice-chair (2004-2007)
  • Philadelphia Bar Association
    • Commerce Case Management Program Opinion Project, coordinator
    • Board of Governors, member (2010)
    • Business Law Section, chair (2010)
    • Business Law Section, treasurer (2008)
    • Business Litigation Committee of Business Law Section, chair (2005 and 2006)

Honors/Awards

  • Recipient of the Albert S. Dandridge, III Diversity Award, Philadelphia Bar Association
  • Recognized By Business Law Section of Philadelphia Bar Association, January 27, 2011
  • American College of Business Court Judges, Honorary Charter Member
  • Given an “AV” rating by Martindale Hubbell, the highest rating provided by the national legal directory.
  • Selected for inclusion on the 2006-2007, 2009-2017 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers® lists
  • Selected as a Judge for the Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg “Pursuit of Justice” Legal Writing Competition, Philadelphia Bar Association, 2010
  • Invitee to Business Bar Leaders Conference of ABA Committee on State and Local Bar Relations, 2009, 2010
  • Philadelphia Bar Association’s Business Law Section’s Committee of the Year Award, 2005 and 2006
  • Cunningham Award for Service and Achievement, University of Maryland School of Law, 1987

Selected Publications

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Selected Presentations/Seminars

  • “Advice of Counsel Discovery in Bad Faith Cases, written materials for the seminar Discovery in Bad Faith Claims – Strategies, Common Disputes, and Emerging Issues”
    December 1, 2012
  • “Business Courts: What Works Best and Why?,” Business Bar Leaders Conference, American Bar Association Committee on State and Local Bar Relations, Chicago, Illinois, May 13, 2009 and May 12, 2010
  • “Business Courts Around the World,” Spring Meeting of the American Bar Association Section of Business Law, co-chair, Vancouver, April 17, 2009
  • American College of Business Court Judges, Brookings Institute 2005-2007, Searle Center, Northwestern University, 2008
  • “ADR in Business Courts – What Works Best?,” Conference of Chief Justices Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference, University of Delaware, October 2008
  • “Annual Developments in Business and Corporate Litigation,” sponsored by the Committee on Business and Corporate Litigation, Spring Meeting of the ABA Section of Business Law Dallas, Texas, April 10, 2008
  • Addressed a Nevada Legislative Committee studying business courts, March 2008
  • “Insurance Coverage Litigation,” National Business Institute, February 2008
  • “Handling Business Litigation in the Philadelphia Commerce Case Management Program,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute and Philadelphia Bar Association, December 2007
  • “Business and Corporate Litigation Committee Forum: An Introduction to Business Courts and Complex Litigation Courts – What Works Best and Why,” program co-chair, Annual Meeting of American Bar Association’s Section of Business Law, San Francisco, California, August 13, 2007
  • “An Introduction to Business Courts,” Institute for the Young Business Lawyer, Spring Meeting of American Bar Association’s Section of Business Law, Washington, D.C., March 2007
  • Addressed South Carolina Supreme Court Task Force on creating a business court in South Carolina, 2007
  • “Specialized and Improved ADR Procedures in the Commerce Program,” Philadelphia Bar Association’s Bench-Bar Conference, September 30, 2006
  • “Jerry Maguire (Show Me the Money) – Considerations in Drafting and Enforcing Employee Non-Compete Agreements: Perspectives from the Bench and Bar,” co-course planner, Philadelphia Bar Association’s Bench-Bar Conference, Pennsylvania Bar Institute and Philadelphia Bar Association, September 30, 2006
  • “Handling Business Litigation in the Philadelphia Commerce Case Management Program,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute, June 2006
  • “Practical Views on Litigation and Trial Practice from the Judges’ Perspective,” moderator, Philadelphia Bar Association, March 2006
  • “Practical Views on Experts from the Judges’ Perspective,” course planner, Philadelphia Bar Association, November 2005
  • “Practical Views on Experts from the Judges’ Perspective,” course planner, Philadelphia Bar Association, November 2005
  • “Current Issues Impacting Insurance Defense Practice,” speaking on (1) Insurance Bad Faith and (2) Ethical Issues for Defense Counsel under Amended Rules of Professional Conduct, National Business Institute, September 2005
  • “Practice in the Commerce Case Management Program from the Judges’ Perspective,” moderator, Philadelphia Bar Association, May 2005
  • “RICO Basics: Views from the Bench and the Bar,” Philadelphia Bar Association, March 2004
  • “Taking Care of Business: Business and Technology Courts in the 21st Century,” University of Maryland School of Law and the American Bar Association’s Business and Corporate Litigation Committee, Baltimore, Maryland, November 2003
  • Addressed Oklahoma Legislative Committee and Bar Association on creating business court, 2003
  • “RICO Made Easy,” Philadelphia Bar Association, September 2000
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