Max B. Chester is a litigation partner with Foley & Lardner LLP. He focuses his practice on litigation and arbitration of domestic and international commercial business disputes and government enforcement actions primarily in the areas of insurance and reinsurance, financial fraud, securities enforcement and FCPA.
Representative engagements include: FCPA compliance review for a Fortune 50 company in Russia and Kazakhstan; FCPA counseling of U.S. entities establishing operations in Russia and Ukraine; representation of a Ukrainian company in litigation in California state and federal courts against the company’s former U.S. based financial agent; representation of a European reinsurer in a multi-million dollar claim made by an insolvent U.S. ceding company regarding a finite risk treaty; representation of a U.S. ceding company in a dispute with a foreign reinsurer regarding payment of excise taxes; representation of a U.S. state association covering birth-related injuries in a dispute with a reinsurer regarding mandatory commutation of the reinsurance agreement; representation of a Bolivian insurance company in Florida state court to recover damages from payments made under insurance bonds for a $78 million construction project in Bolivia; representation of a publicly traded company in the SEC's investigation regarding the company's ownership of an entity that specialized in investment in and securitization of credit sensitive residential mortgage assets; internal investigations for privately held and publicly traded clients.
Max is also active in pro bono matters. He won political asylum after a trial in the United States Immigration Court in Chicago for a refugee from Iran who was persecuted for converting from Islam and becoming a member of a Bahai Faith. He represented an elderly Holocaust survivor in a claims proceeding before the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany. Max volunteers in the Milwaukee Justice Center and through the American Bar Association (ABA) site, www.ABAFreeLegalAnswers.org, to provide answers to legal questions posed by low-income individuals. The ABA has recognized Max as the ABA Free Legal Answers 2021 Pro Bono Leader for his extraordinary pro bono services through the ABA Free Legal Answers website. He is also a volunteer in the Milwaukee Justice Center.
Max is a graduate of Marquette University Law School (J.D., magna cum laude, 2001) and the University of Wisconsin - Madison (B.S, distinction in the major of political science, with honors in the College of Letters & Science, 1998). At Marquette, he was a senior note and comment editor for the Marquette Law Review.
Max is a member of the State Bar of Wisconsin and is admitted to practice in Wisconsin state and federal courts.
Max is a native speaker of Russian and is fluent in Ukrainian.
- Co-author, “Resolving Business Disputes: U.S. Discovery in Aid of International Private Commercial Arbitration,” Wisconsin Lawyer (November 10, 2020)
- Co-author, “Constitutional Challenges to Proposed Retroactive COVID-19 Coverage Legislation,” FORC Journal (3rd ed., Vol. 31) (2020)
- Co-author, “U.S. Discovery in Aid of International Private Commercial Arbitration,” Arias U.S. Quarterly (September 2020)
- Presenter, "Arbitration and Securities Litigation in the US," School of Magistrates of the Rio de Janeiro State (Escola da Magistratura do Estado do Rio de Janeiro)” (August 27, 2020)
- “Beyond Policy: The Practical Realities of Russia-Ukraine-US Commercial Transactions and Litigation,” Center for Russia, East Europe, & Central Asia at the UW—Madison (September 27, 2018)
- “What In-House Counsel Should Know about Arbitration, the Preferred Method of Resolution of International Disputes,” Celesq AttorneysEd Center Webinar (January 27, 2015)
- “Reinsurance Broker Liability: Lessons from the Past, Predictions for the Future?” 2014 BRMA Conference, Tampa Bay, Florida
- “Arbitration Here and Abroad: Legal Developments and Practical Tips,” 2013 Legal Developments and Their Implications for Wisconsin Businesses Conference, December 10, 2013, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
- "Foreign Corrupt Practices Act – What exactly is it?" BRMA Committee Rendezvous (April 22, 2013)
- "FCPA Russian Issues," Russia – Strategies and Means to Meet the Challenges & Realize the Opportunities (April 2013)
- "Introduction of the FCPA to the Reinsurance Industry," Journal of Reinsurance - IRU, Inc. - Intermediaries and Reinsurance Underwriters Association (Vol. 19, No. 3, Summer 2012)
- Co-author, “FCPA Investigation Costs – Are You Covered?” The Corporate Counselor (Vol. 26, No. 9, January, 2012)
- Co-author, “The FCPA and Insurance: Am I Covered or Should I Be?” Risk & Insurance (November 21, 2011)
- "Russian FCPA: The Law Has Been Signed, Will The Culture Change Result?” FCPA Professor (June 17, 2011)
- Fighting Bribery in the Post-Soviet Space: Tenaris S.A. Settles FCPA Charges in Uzbekistan, Foley & Lardner LLP Legal News Alert (May 24, 2011)
- “Do Reinsurers Have to Pay? Always?” XIV Annual All-Russia Reinsurance Conference, March 23-24, 2010, Moscow, Russia
- "Advantages and Disadvantages of Arbitration as a Mechanism to Resolve International Reinsurance Disputes," XIII Annual All-Russia Reinsurance Conference, March 24-25, 2009, Moscow, Russia
- "Current Legal Issues In the Global Reinsurance Market," XIII Annual All-Russia Reinsurance Conference, March 24-25, 2009, Moscow, Russia
- Co-author, "The Rise In Litigation From FCPA Enforcement," Securities Law360: Litigation, Policy & People News (February 10, 2009)
- Co-author, "The Role of Federal Courts in Consolidating Reinsurance Arbitrations: The Latest Cases -- Many Questions Still Unanswered," New Appleman on Insurance: Current Critical Issues in Insurance Law, Matthew Bender & Company, Inc. (April 2008)
- "Reinsurance Arbitrations and Terrorism Insurance," New Appleman’s™ Insurance Coverage Teleconference (April 9, 2008)
- "Ways to Achieve Transparency in Reinsurance," XII Annual All-Russia Reinsurance Conference, March 27-28, 2008, Moscow, Russia
- "Legal Aspects of Reinsurance Brokerage Services," XII Annual All-Russia Reinsurance Conference, March 27-28, 2008, Moscow, Russia
- Co-author, "Supreme Court Further Restricts Private Securities Claims Alleging Deceptive Conduct," Corporate Directors Forum (Jan. 18, 2008)
- "The Aftermath of the Airplane Accident: Recovery of Damages for Psychological Injuries Accompanied by Physical Injuries Under the Warsaw Convention," Marquette Law Review 84 (1)