Chris Habersaat advises clients in a variety of complex litigation matters, representing private and public companies, governmental agencies and individuals before federal and state courts, administrative agencies and arbitration tribunals.
Chris’ practice focuses on the preparation and trial of complex civil cases involving a broad range of business and commercial issues, including matters dealing with business contracts and torts, land use and property related disputes, construction-related disputes, complex insurance coverage disputes and data privacy and cybersecurity matters. Chris also has extensive experience representing companies and individuals in governmental investigations, civil enforcement actions and investigation-related litigation. His clients include commercial property owners and developers, retailers, restaurants and hospitality groups, healthcare providers, as well as individuals.
Admitted in Massachusetts and New York, with 25 years of experience, Chris has served as lead trial counsel in numerous trials in both MA and NY. Chris has been appointed as a Special Assistant Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to defend the Commonwealth litigation brought in Massachusetts and New Jersey.
- Lead counsel representing a family holding a 50% ownership interest in historic and prominent buildings on Brattle Street in Harvard Square in complex Massachusetts Land Court partition litigation resulting in the sale of the commercial properties for $108M.
- Lead counsel representing a Boston-based seafood company in arbitration to determine the value of the business income and extra expense losses the company sustained following the shutdown of its main distribution facility resulting in an award in excess of $2.5M.
- Lead counsel representing a commercial property owner in state court in Manhattan against a developer in connection with significant property damage sustained to our client’s building caused by construction activity at the adjoining property. After a 13-day trial, secured a judgment in excess of $2M, plus an award of attorney’s fees.
- Appointed Special Assistant Attorney General and acted as lead counsel in the successful defense of a class action lawsuit brought in Federal Court in New Jersey, and in the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, by a class of out-of-state residents challenging the constitutionality of the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority's FASTLANE toll discount program.
- Represented a Boston-based restaurant/hospitality group in connection with a civil enforcement action brought in state court by the Massachusetts Attorney General under the State's data privacy law, G.L. c. 93H, following a data and cybersecurity breach involving access to consumer credit card information.
- Represented a hotel/hospitality group in connection with data privacy and cybersecurity matters resultant from a governmental investigation into the reported release of personal information on account of a breach through vendor-supplied POS software.
- Lead counsel representing a commercial property owner in successfully prosecuting litigation concerning a commercial property owner’s right to use a private way to access its property after claims of trespass and nuisance were asserted by fee owner of the private way.
- Represented at the trial and appellate level a property owner in a lawsuit brought by an abutting property owner claiming that an "easement for light and air" prevented the commercial development of a building in a manner that would obstruct the windows of the abutter's building.
- Lead counsel representing Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in the successful defense of an administrative bid protest filed with the Federal Transit Authority by an unsuccessful bidder to a $114M contract for purchase of diesel locomotives.
- Lead counsel representing Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority in the successful defense of lawsuit brought by an unsuccessful bidder challenging the award of a $155M contract for paratransit services known as THE RIDE.
- Represented Massachusetts Transportation Authority in a series of lawsuits in the trial and appellate courts challenging the award of a $100M contract for the manufacture and installation of system-wide automatic fare collection equipment.
- Lead counsel representing a pharmacy services provider in a constitutional-based lawsuit filed in Federal Court challenging the termination of a State correctional facilities pharmaceutical contract.
- Represented commercial developer at the trial and appellate level in a case of first impression in Massachusetts under G.L. c. 231, §15, resulting in the expedited dissolution of a lis pendens and the award of attorney’s fee and costs.
- Represented commercial property owners in lawsuits alleging bodily injury and property damage claims arising out of alleged exposure to mold.
- Represented property owners in administrative enforcement proceedings brought by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Environmental Protection arising out of alleged illegal landfilling, disposal of hazardous materials and filling of wetlands.
- Represented real estate entities in several matters involving structural and subsurface failures of buildings sustained at retail locations throughout the U.S. causing extensive property damage and interruption of business.
Professional and Community Involvement
Chris is committed to pro bono work and represents a number of organizations, including Community Resources for Justice, a Massachusetts-based organization that has worked for over 130 years in matters relating to social justice.
Chris is a board member of the Friends of Lower Fields, a non-profit organization that was instrumental in developing a $3M sports complex in Acton, Massachusetts for use by the high school, youth sports programs and the community.
Chris is a past President of Acton Boxborough Youth Soccer and is a long-standing member, and former chairman, of the Boxborough Zoning Board of Appeals.
- Zoning Board of Appeals, Boxborough, MA
- Acton Boxborough Youth Soccer, Board of Directors and past President
- Board Member, Friends of Lower Fields
- Boston Bar Association
- New York Bar Association
- Real Estate Bar Association (REBA)
Awards and Recognition
- Martindale Hubbell Peer Review Rated AV Preeminent TM
- Community Resources for Justice CEO Award Recipient 2012
- Massachusetts SuperLawyer – Rising Star, 2005
Publications & Mentions
|March 31, 2015|
|Managing the Risky Business of Loyalty Programs|
|"Alternate Dispute Resolution in Land Use and Permitting Disputes," National Association of Industrial and Office Properties, Massachusetts Forum for Commercial Real Estate|