Will Terpening divides his practice between criminal and civil litigation in the federal courts, with particular emphasis on white collar criminal defense/ business crimes, criminal and civil securities litigation, other complex business civil litigation and federal appeals. Mr. Terpening’s practice is, to a considerable degree, devoted to counseling and representing professionals, executives, and small to mid-sized companies as they confront the panoply of litigation and negotiation issues that occur over a career or a corporate lifespan. This relationship tends to initiate with, or often involve, work in high-stakes matters. However, Mr. Terpening and the firm strive to “partner” with clients over time, which prompts clients to call upon him for many types of legal counseling and representation in matters large and small.
Illustrative examples of his work for companies and individuals include responding to government subpoenas and search warrants, conducting internal investigations, defending against criminal prosecutions at every stage (pre-indictment through trial and, if necessary, appeal), and negotiating and litigating civil matters, including contract disputes and investor claims. He has substantial experience litigating with federal and state prosecutors, regulators and licensing entities, including the Department of Justice, Securities and Exchange Commission, North Carolina professional licensing Boards for real estate brokers, doctors, attorneys, public accountants, and other professions. His work for executives and professionals, in addition to licensing and criminal defense issues related to their careers, includes negotiation of employment and separation agreements.
Mr. Terpening was educated at Brown University and Duke Law School. As an undergraduate at Brown, he achieved the distinction of induction into the Phi Beta Kappa honors society, and then graduated from Brown, magna cum laude, with honors in American and English Literature. He earned a Master’s in English from Duke, concurrent with his law degree. After Duke, he was selected as a law clerk to the Honorable Graham C. Mullen, then Chief Judge for the United States District Court for the Western District of North Carolina. After that, the early years of his practice focused exclusively on securities litigation defense with Alston & Bird LLP’s nationally respected securities litigation practice group. His experience there included defending against massive securities fraud class actions, broker-dealer disputes involving the entity now known as FINRA, and SEC investigations and actions.
Mr. Terpening co-founded Anderson Terpening in 2007. He has, since then, received several significant accolades from his peers. These include designation as a “Rising Star” in the North Carolina Super Lawyers magazine for 2009 and 2010, as well as one of one of Business Leader magazine’s “Top North Carolina Lawyers” for 2009.
Mr. Terpening routinely appears in the federal courts, and his trial work includes extensive defense of legally and factually complex, document-intensive, criminal fraud prosecutions. Recent trial work includes first-chairing the trial of the former CEO of what was once the nation’s largest healthcare securitization company in federal court in Columbus, Ohio (United States v. Poulsen, 2:06-CR-129 (S.D. Ohio). In addition, Mr. Terpening was half of the two- attorney team that obtained an acquittal for a prominent tax attorney in a Charlotte federal court in 2007 (United States v. Graves (W.D.N.C)). Aside from his trial work, Mr. Terpening has handled a number of high-profile matters, ranging from such divergent extremes as the criminal defense of one of the operators of an exclusive Charlotte prostitution ring, to trying the aforementioned Poulsen matter, to representing numerous lawyers and other professionals accused of various improprieties, including mortgage and securities fraud.
Mr. Terpening is committed to serving the community through indigent defense, and serves on both trial and appellate level Criminal Justice Act Panels. He also serves the legal community as the Newsletter Chair for the North Carolina Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section. More generally, he actively and continuously volunteers for Brown’s alumni association, including assisting the University with its process for recruiting and selecting incoming freshmen.
Mr. Terpening speaks and publishes whenever the opportunity arises. He has presented on such subjects and document retention, subpoena response plans, and compliance, for organizations including the Mecklenburg County Bar’s Continuing Legal Education program and different professional groups throughout North Carolina and Georgia. He has written about securities litigation issues for the Charlotte Business Journal and other publications. He has regularly been quoted in the Charlotte Observer, the Columbus Dispatch, Bloomberg and other major newspapers and media outlets. His forthcoming article on corporate document retention plans and responding to government subpoenas is scheduled for publication in the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers’ Champion magazine in April 2010.
Among other jurisdictions, he is admitted to all the federal and state courts in North Carolina; Georgia state courts; the United States Court for the Northern District of Georgia; and the Fourth, Sixth, and Eleventh Circuit Courts of Appeals. He is a licensed FINRA arbitrator.
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