Joseph M. Cacace is a seasoned trial and appellate litigator with a proven record of success at all levels of state and federal courts and in arbitrations and mediations. Mr. Cacace's strategic counsel for clients draws upon his extensive experience representing plaintiffs and defendants in a wide range of matters. Mr. Cacace handles complex civil disputes of all types. His business litigation expertise includes cases involving closely held businesses, shareholder derivative actions, contractual disputes, unfair and deceptive business practices, and a wide range of business torts. The litigation often involves intellectual property issues, noncompete and non-solicitation agreements, and employment issues.
Mr. Cacace regularly handles cases involving multiple lawsuits in different jurisdictions, and those that involve government enforcement actions, bankruptcies, and receiverships. His practice includes labor and employment litigation and counseling, defamation, construction litigation, professional malpractice, civil rights, and class actions on behalf of plaintiffs and defendants.
Mr. Cacace is a member of the Amicus Brief and Appellate-Bench Bar Committees of the Massachusetts Bar Association. He also serves on the Board of Governors of the Law Clerks' Society of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. Mr. Cacace previously served on the Large Law Firm Subcommittee of the Supreme Judicial Court's Steering Committee on Lawyer Well-Being.
Prior to joining Todd & Weld, Mr. Cacace represented clients in business litigation, intellectual property disputes, product liability actions, consumer class actions, and real estate disputes among other types of matters. He represented clients in criminal and immigration matters on a pro bono basis. Mr. Cacace served as a law clerk to the Honorable Robert J. Cordy of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court.
Mr. Cacace's recent accomplishments on behalf of clients include:
- Judge Rotenberg Educ. Ctr., Inc. v. U.S. Food & Drug Admin., et al., Nos. 20-1087 & 20-1088 (D.C. Cir. July 6, 2021) (Persuaded D.C. Circuit to vacate FDA’s ban of electrical stimulation devices used to treat aggressive or self-injurious behavior because banning a medical device for a particular purpose regulates the practice of medicine in violation of 21 U.S.C. § 396)
- Heagney v. Wong, 915 F.3d 805 (1st Cir. 2019) (First appellate decision affirming plaintiff's verdict for employer's violation of M.G.L. c. 151B, § 4(9), which protects employees and prospective employees from having to disclose criminal charges that do not result in conviction)
- Preston v. Nagel, 857 F.3d 1382 (Fed. Cir. 2017) (Obtained ruling from U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit upholding remand of business dispute to state court, and denying argument by opposition that the America Invents Act overrides a statutory bar to appellate review of remand order)
- Chanowski v. Forman Industries, Inc., 2017 WL 4558256 (Mass. App. Ct. Oct. 13, 2017) (Rule 1:28) (Obtained ruling upholding trial court’s order that defendants must permit plaintiffs to inspect corporate records and pay plaintiffs’ attorneys’ fees; obtained award of appellate attorneys’ fees)
Business Litigation – Closely Held Business Disputes, Shareholder Disputes, and Corporate Governance Litigation
- Persuaded a Massachusetts Superior Court judge to grant a preliminary injunction to clients in a shareholder dispute ordering that a newly elected board of directors and new corporate officers remain in place over the objections of founders of a medical cannabis dispensary and cultivation company
Business Litigation – Intellectual Property
- Persuaded the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to reject an argument that the America Invents Act overrides a statutory bar to appellate review of a remand order to state court
- Secured favorable settlement for ophthalmologist after filing suit against former partner for breaches of contract and fiduciary duty in connection with breakup of the business
- Represented judgment creditor in fraudulent transfer action; obtained injunctive relief and dismissal of abuse of process claims under anti-SLAPP statute; secured favorable settlement
- Represented car wash equipment distribution company in breach of contract dispute with car wash owner, which settled after obtaining favorable evidentiary ruling immediately before trial
- Represented a large environmental and infrastructure consulting business in professional negligence claim against accounting firm, which resulted in a favorable settlement after mediation
Defamation and Employment Discrimination
Civil Rights, Personal Injury, and Tort Claims
- Representing children separated from their parents at the border in a first-of-its-kind damages putative class action against current and former government officials seeking compensation for the children and the establishment of a fund for ongoing mental health treatment and monitoring
- Persuaded a federal district court judge in Massachusetts to permit a civil rights class action lawsuit to proceed against the City of Methuen, its police chief, and several individual police officers for using a factually inaccurate and coercive Spanish-language advice-of-rights form during OUI arrests
- Represented minor student in lawsuit against municipality, school officials, and former teacher for sexual harassment and abuse by former teacher, which settled favorably after mediation following summary judgment briefing
Real Estate Litigation
- On behalf of a condominium unit owner, persuaded a Massachusetts Superior Court judge to deny the defendants' motion to dismiss the owner's complaint arising from catastrophic damage to the owner's unit due to the alleged failure of the condominium association and property manager to maintain and repair the condominium's common areas, including leaking steam pipes; settled case favorably before trial after aggressive discovery efforts revealed powerful evidence of liability
- Represented general contractor in multi-party construction dispute arising out of delay claim in connection with residential historic rehabilitation project in Boston, which resulted in favorable settlement on first day of arbitration
- Obtained default against general contractor and favorably settling claims on behalf of subcontractor in construction dispute concerning residential subdivision in southern New Hampshire
- Defended a putative class action under the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act, resulting in a favorable settlement and dismissal with prejudice
- Defended individual charged with federal tax obstruction in multi-defendant federal criminal tax evasion prosecution, resulting in favorable plea agreement and sentence of home detention