Alisa Taormina of the Litigation and Financial Services/Class Action Business Units Shares Her Experiences in the Legal Industry and at Stroock
Alisa Taormina is a member of our Litigation and Financial Services/Class Action Business Units. She joined us in 2011 from Cole, Scott & Kissane, P.A. where her practice focused on the defense of claims for premises liability, property damage and auto negligence.
Q. What is the primary focus of your practice?
A. My practice is focused on representing consumer financial services companies in consumer litigation matters in both individual actions and class actions. Clients that I work for include Chase Bank USA, N.A., HSBC Bank USA, N.A. and TransUnion LLC. The matters I handle typically involve alleged violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, the Fair Debt Collections Act, and state debt collection practices statutes such as the Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act.
I was part of the Stroock team that represented Chase Bank USA, N.A. in a matter asserting claims under the Fair Credit Reporting Act and various state laws in Triplett v. JP Morgan Chase Bank (Northern District of Florida Case No. 4:13-cv-556). We were able to obtain a dismissal at the pleading stage based on several grounds including preemption.
I was also involved in Marshall v. ITT Technical Institute, et al. (Eastern District of Tennessee Case No. 3:11-cv-00552) wherein we represented one of the defendants, Sallie Mae, Inc. Our team was able to obtain a dismissal by asserting claims for misrepresentation, civil conspiracy and violation of state and federal debt collection statutes based upon misleading and deceptive statements in ITT Technical Institute’s educational programs promotional materials and practices relating to student loans used to finance education.
Q. What is the most challenging aspect of your profession?
A. An aspect of my profession that I find both challenging and exciting is that it is continuously changing and developing. In my practice area, in particular, we must often address new laws and regulations, or changes to existing laws, which keeps us on our toes.
For example, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection recently made clear its intention to ban (or severely limit) class action waivers and pre-dispute arbitration agreements. Although a formal rule has yet to be issued, anticipated action will have significant implications for all financial institutions employing arbitration.
Q. What jobs did you have before becoming a lawyer?
A. During high school and college I worked at a daycare center and later became a nanny during my summer breaks from school. I still talk to one of the children who I started babysitting when she was 12 days old – she is 14 now.
Q. What activities are you involved in?
A. Outside of Stroock, I like to stay active and spend as much time as possible outdoors. You can usually find me at a pilates or yoga class, or on the beach.
Q. What advice would you give to an incoming first year associate?
A. Immerse yourself in the law. Take advantage of the resources available to you and pay close attention to the advice, guidance and teaching provided by senior attorneys. I think it is also important to spend time outside of work gaining as much knowledge as possible about your practice area.