Colleen Smeryage

Associate, Miami

Colleen is an experienced trial and appellate attorney whose practice focuses on complex commercial litigation and arbitration. Colleen regularly obtains favorable outcomes for clients in high stakes litigation involving commercial transactions, securities, international terrorism, trade secrets, and insurance law.  Her journalism background and written advocacy skills have enabled her to successfully mount and defend appeals in state and federal courts across the United States.

Colleen has extensive courtroom experience, having served as trial counsel in several bench and jury trials.  Most recently, she served as trial counsel in a high profile four-week trial where she examined numerous fact and expert witnesses and presented extensive oral argument.  Prior to this, Colleen served as trial counsel in a two-week federal jury trial that culminated in a complete defense verdict in her client’s favor.  She has also achieved favorable jury verdicts as plaintiff’s counsel, including successful verdicts in a federal court action arising from a coordinated cyberattack and a state court action premised on civil theft.

Prior to attending law school, Colleen worked in the oil and gas industry, spending significant time in Houston, Texas and the Middle East.

Colleen’s representations include:

  • Represented victims of international terrorism in collection efforts to satisfy $2.9 billion judgment obtained for clients, including extensive litigation over funds blocked pursuant to OFAC regulations

  • Represented victims of U.S.S. Cole bombing against Republic of Sudan in federal and appellate courts, culminating in historic settlement of claims under the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act

  • Represented high-profile client in complex probate and guardianship proceeding, including role as trial counsel in 19-day bench trial

  • Represented Florida’s largest physician group against numerous insurers in complex dispute regarding reimbursement rates

  • Represented credit card processor in cyberattack litigation, culminating in a successful jury verdict in federal court

  • Represented bankruptcy trustees in pursuing significant insurance proceeds in action related to collapse of prominent Ponzi scheme

  • Represented broker in fraud and unfair trade practices act case, including role as trial counsel in two-week federal jury trial

  • Represented security and automation company in defending Lanham Act claims premised on alleged false advertising and unfair competition

  • Represented Brendan Dassey, subject of Making a Murderer documentary, as member of Northwestern Pritzker School of Law’s wrongful convictions clinic

  • Northwestern University School of Law, J.D., cum laude;
    Northwestern University Journal of International Law and Business

  • Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism, B.A., magna cum laude; Mortar Board Senior Honor Society; Kappa Tau Alpha Journalism Honor Society

  • Florida

  • Illinois

  • U.S. Court of Appeals: Eleventh Circuit

  • U.S. District Court: Southern District of Florida