Ballard Spahr partner Alan S. Kaplinsky has been named a Litigation Trailblazer by the National Law Journal. The award recognizes attorneys who have developed innovative legal strategies that have changed the practice of litigation.

Mr. Kaplinsky pioneered of the use of pre-dispute arbitration clauses that include waivers of the right to proceed on a classwide basis. He began drafting such clauses for his many bank and credit card clients more than 15 years ago, and their use quickly spread throughout the consumer financial services world and to other industries. 

Mr. Kaplinsky was recently featured in a New York Times piece on the effects of arbitration. The lead front-page article described him as “laser-focused and admirably relentless” and outlined how Mr. Kaplinsky revolutionized the use of arbitration clauses.

Winners were selected by National Law Journal editors and consultants to American Lawyer Media. Mr. Kaplinsky is one of 50 lawyers across the country to be honored with the Litigation Trailblazer award. He will be honored at a reception in New York City on December 14. 

In his letter to readers about the list of honorees, National Law Journal & Legal Times Vice President and Group Publisher Kenneth A. Gary noted: “While those recognized have come at the litigation process from different angles, a common thread ties them together: each has shown a deep passion and perseverance in pursuit of their mission, having achieved remarkable successes along the way.”

Mr. Kaplinsky leads Ballard Spahr’s Consumer Financial Services Group, which has more than 100 lawyers and is one of the leading practices of its kind in the United States. He devotes his practice to counseling financial institutions on bank regulatory and transactional matters, particularly consumer financial services law, and defending financial institutions in lawsuits brought by consumers and government enforcement agencies. The group represents clients ranging from the largest financial institutions in the nation to smaller enterprises and Internet-based providers.

Chambers USA consistently ranks the Group in the highest tier nationally in the category of Financial Services Regulation: Consumer Finance (Compliance and Litigation). In addition, the Group produces CFPB Monitor, a blog that monitors developments by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The blog has been repeatedly named a Top 100 law blog by the ABA Journal.