Robert C. “Bobby” Gilbert has deep roots in South Florida. His grandparents settled in Miami in 1926, and his parents were born and raised here. Bobby attended public school in South Miami-Dade County. He graduated from the University of Miami School of Law in 1985.
Bobby has nearly three decades of experience in complex business litigation, class actions and multidistrict litigation, and handles cases throughout the United States. He has been appointed as lead and co-lead counsel, coordinating counsel, and liaison counsel in a number of class actions in federal and state courts. Bobby has also served as trial counsel in class actions and other complex business disputes that were tried before judges, juries and arbitrators. He has briefed and argued a number of appeals, including two precedent-setting cases before the Florida Supreme Court.
In 2011, United States District Judge James Lawrence King of the Southern District of Florida appointed Bobby as Plaintiffs’ Coordinating Counsel in In re Checking Account Overdraft Litigation, MDL 2036. That multidistrict litigation involves a series of class actions brought on behalf of customers of more than 30 of the nation’s largest banks, challenging the banks’ internal practice of reordering debit card transactions in a manner designed to maximize the number of customer overdrafts, thus generating substantially increased overdraft fee revenues for the banks. As Plaintiffs’ Coordinating Counsel, Bobby has been responsible for organizing and managing a team of over 100 plaintiffs’ lawyers from more than 30 law firms to prosecute the litigation; serving as the primary contact with the banks’ counsel on issues relating to the coordination of the litigation; and serving as the plaintiffs’ primary contact with the Court regarding the management and administration of the litigation. Bobby has also led or participated in settlement negotiations with numerous banks that, to date, have resulted in settlements exceeding $1.2 billion, including Bank of America ($410 million), Citizens Financial ($137.5 million), JPMorgan Chase Bank ($110 million), PNC Bank ($90 million), TD Bank ($62 million), U.S. Bank ($55 million), Union Bank ($35 million) and Capital One ($31.7 million).
For the past fifteen years, Bobby has represented thousands of Florida homeowners in class actions to recover full compensation under the Florida Constitution based on the Florida Department of Agriculture’s taking and destruction of the homeowners’ private property. As lead counsel, Bobby argued before the Florida Supreme Court to establish the homeowners’ right to pursue their claims; has served as trial counsel in non-jury trials that determined liability, followed by jury trials that established the amount of full compensation owed to the homeowners for their private property; and has handled all appellate proceedings. Bobby’s tireless efforts on behalf of the Florida homeowners have resulted in judgments exceeding $93 million.
Bobby has been involved in a number of other class actions and multidistrict litigation proceedings over the course of his career. Among them, he served as co-lead counsel and trial counsel in Estes and Smith vs. First Union National Bank, N.A., a class action brought on behalf of 530 victims of a Ponzi scheme, and he was appointed by United States District Judge Patricia Seitz of the Southern District of Florida as liaison counsel for indirect purchasers in In re Terazosin Hydrochloride Antitrust Litigation.
Bobby is an Adjunct Professor at Vanderbilt University Law School, where he co-taught a course on complex litigation in federal courts that focused on multidistrict litigation and class actions. He frequently lectures and makes presentations on a variety of topics.
Bobby is actively involved in community service, where he has served for many years as a trustee of the Greater Miami Jewish Federation. He previously served as chairman of the board of the Alexander Muss High School in Israel, and as a trustee of The Miami Foundation. Bobby and his wife Nancy live in Coral Gables, where they raised their two sons.