Geoffrey Sant
PEOPLE

Geoffrey Sant

Partner
sant.geoffrey@dorsey.com

Overview

GEOFFREY ADVISES CLIENTS ON COMMERCIAL, CORPORATE AND BANKING LITIGATION AND TRANSACTIONS.

Geoffrey is a Partner in the Trial Department of Dorsey & Whitney LLP. He represents some of the world’s largest banks, investment companies, and businesses in both litigation and transactional matters. For the past half-decade, he has also taught the nation’s only class on banking litigation (at Fordham Law School).

Geoffrey’s litigation successes include not only defeating a securities litigation against a Chinese company but also convincing the judge to impose sanctions against the law firm that filed the lawsuit. This remarkable result was featured in the South China Morning Post article “US court order brings hope for Chinese firms.” Geoffrey has won seven-figure and eight-figure judgments for Chinese clients in litigations against US defendants. He also successfully obtained the dismissal of lawsuits against major Chinese banks and businesses, including obtaining the dismissal with prejudice of a litigation seeking over one billion in damages. He has also represented multiple Chinese companies in successful employment disputes with US employees, and has worked on high-profile disputes for a major South American bank, a Brazilian investment company, and a billion-dollar litigation for a leading US technology company, among others.

Geoffrey’s transactional matters include winning regulatory approval for a new US branch of a major Chinese bank; successfully helping a Chinese company to deregister and go dark; and representing a major Chinese real estate company in establishing a US subsidiary and making US acquisitions. 

Geoffrey teaches at Fordham Law School and has taught at the China University of Political Science and Law (in Beijing). Geoffrey’s legal writings have been cited at the US Supreme Court, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, and the New York Court of Appeals, as well as numerous other trial and appellate courts. In 2014, New York’s highest court cited to Geoffrey and adopted his public policy arguments in deciding a disputed point of New York banking law, in response to certified questions from the Second Circuit. Geoffrey’s interviews and commentary on legal issues have appeared in such media as American Lawyer, BBC Radio, CBC Radio, CCTV, CNN, CNBC, Global Times, The New York Times, People’s Daily, Phoenix Television, and The Wall Street Journal, among others. In 2016, The Atlantic selected one of Geoffrey’s writings as an “Exceptional Work of Journalism.” 

Geoffrey is a director of the Chinese Business Lawyers Association, and is the President of the Board of Directors of the New York Chinese Cultural Center, a 44-year old nonprofit. He is a native speaker of English, and is fluent in Mandarin Chinese, Japanese, and Spanish. China’s Ministry of Culture named Geoffrey a “Young Sinologist” in 2016. 

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Education & Admissions

New York University (J.D., 2008)

Columbia University (M.A., Chinese & Japanese Literature, 2005)

University of Chicago (B.A., Romance Languages & Literature; Near Eastern Languages & Civilization, 1996), Honors

Admissions

  • New York
  • The Supreme Court of the United States
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York

Languages

  • English, Chinese, Japanese, Spanish

Experience

Representative Litigation

  • Great Dynasty International Financial Holdings Limited v. Haiting Li, 13-civ-1734 (N.D.Cal. 2014) (Chen, J.). Originated and handled the defense of an international company and its executives in five million dollar securities litigation lawsuit. In the first such case ever, we helped a Chinese company that had been sued in a securities litigation to obtain complete dismissal of the lawsuit and also to collect damages from the lawyers who sued the company. The court stated that “there is clear and convincing evidence that GDI’s counsel . . . was both reckless and frivolous [in bringing the lawsuit against our client], and [that this] amounted to conduct tantamount to bad faith.” The court held that the plaintiffs’ law firm and the individual attorneys were liable for paying all of our clients’ legal fees.
  • Uni-Rty Corporation v. New York Guangdong Finance, Inc., Index No. 650361/12, Slip Op. (N.Y. Sup. Court, N.Y County, Dec. 5, 2012) (Sherwood, J.). Won on motion to dismiss, obtaining complete dismissal of multimillion-dollar claims against international bank.
  • Huang v. Advanced Battery Technologies, Inc., 09-civ-8297 (S.D.N.Y. May 26, 2010) (Baer, J.). Won dismissal on forum non conveniens grounds in a multimillion-dollar breach of contract and tort case against NASDAQ-listed technology company. Despite a lawsuit brought by a US citizen plaintiff, and a contract calling for payments in dollars through the company’s New York office, successfully obtained dismissal of lawsuit in favor of Chinese court system.

News & Resources

Articles

Animal Science Products, Inc. v. Hebei Welcome Pharmaceutical Co.
尚撷福:让好莱坞多点华人面孔 (Geoffrey Sant: Hollywood Should Have More Asian Faces), Global Times (环球时报)
"青年汉学家研修计划”搭建中外桥梁 (“Qing Nian Han Xue Jia Yan Xiu Ji Hua” Da Jian Zhong Wai Qiao Liang), People's Daily Overseas Edition
"Court-Ordered Law Breaking," Brooklyn Law Review, Vol. 81, No. 1, 2016
“The Failure of Anti-Money Laundering Regulation: Where is the Cost-Benefit Analysis?” Notre Dame Law Review
Co-Author, "The Choking Continues After 'Choke Point'," American Banker
Op-Ed, “Account Closed: How Bank ‘De-Risking’ Hurts Legitimate Customers,” Wall Street Journal
“New York State Legislature Seeks to Overturn 'Daimler',” New York Law Journal
What’s Left of Koehler? The New York Court of Appeals’ Endorsement of the Separate Entity Rule Eviscerates its Koehler Decision from Just Five Years Ago (with Brittany M. Taylor), Securities Regulation & Law Report
Aerospatiale Factors on Discovery in Violation of Foreign Laws, New York Law Journal
The Right’s Astonishing Race Claim: Why it Thinks Eric Holder is Worse Than Slaveholders

News & Press Mentions

Super Lawyers Recognizes 19 Dorsey Lawyers in New York
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Comments on Trump-Xi Summit
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Optimistic About US-China Trade
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Comments on Chinese Offshore Investment
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Discusses Microsoft Warrant Dispute
Courts & Torts: Driving the Chinese Legal System
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Comments on Breaking EU Data Protection Laws
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Helps Welcome Year of the Dog at the New York Chinese Cultural Center’s New Year Celebrations
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Remarks on Chinese Takeover of Anbang
“Viewing Chinese New Year Through a Foreigner’s Eyes: American Lawyer Geoffrey Sant" (外国人眼中的中国年丨美国律师尚撷福:纽约掀起了“春节热”), CCTV
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Comments on Chinese Companies' Overseas Investments
“美律师谈红黄蓝在美被告案-陈卿瑋” (American Lawyer Discusses US Lawsuit Against RBY), Phoenix Television
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Discusses US Lawsuit Against RBY
“新丝路”海外汉学专家论坛在纽约举办 (Foreign China Experts Discuss the “New Silk Road” at the New York Consulate), Consulate General of the People’s Republic of China in New York
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Comments on China's New Good Samaritan Law
Senior judge says China's judicial reform includes mediation
One Belt One Road Creates Opportunities as China Pushes Multiple Dispute Resolution Mechanisms
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Remarks on Chinese Warnings on Overseas Acquisitions
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Comments on Hackers Holding Pirates of the Caribbean Ransom
深度:无论怎么判,特朗普移民禁令之战还将继续 (In depth: No matter what the court decides, the battle over the Trump immigration order will continue), Shanghai Observer (上观) and Liberation Daily (解放日报)
Tencent, 腾讯财经给网友拜年 (Tencent Finance Wishes Happy New Year to the World)
Dorsey Partner Geoffrey Sant Discusses US Companies Cutting Back in China
律师之路名师讲堂第二十三讲《赴美投资的智商,情商,法商》(Famous Lawyers Lecture Series, 23rd Lecture: “Investing in the United States: IQ, EQ, and Legal Knowledge”), Lawyer College Renmin University
Can Blockchain Prevent Money Laundering?, Finextra
美狂抓外银洗钱 没证据照样开罚 (Mei Kuang Zhua Wai Yin Xi Qian Mei Zheng Ju Zhao Yang Kai Fa)

Legal Writings

Geoffrey Sant previously worked as a professional translator of Chinese and Japanese. He is the translator (from Japanese) of Yamada Futaro’s novel The Kouga Ninja Scrolls (Del Rey Books). His Chinese-language writing has been anthologized in a collection of the year’s best writing, Nan-wang Gu-shi (難望故事 [Unforgettable Stories]). Geoffrey Sant translated Chinese-language interviews of Chinatown eyewitnesses of 9/11 for “Ground One: Voices from Post-9/11 Chinatown” (9/11 Oral History Project), available at: http://911digitalarchive.org/chinatown/

Geoffrey Sant’s writings have appeared in Slate Magazine, Anthropology News, and leading Asian media, such as Taipei Times, Taiwan News, Zhongguo Shibao (中国時報), and Zhongyang Ribao (中央日報). He wrote a bilingual magazine column that also served as the basis for a weekly radio show on Taiwan’s ICRT, and he has appeared as a regular commentator on the People’s Daily, Sing Tao Daily, Caixin Media, Asia TV, Blue Ocean Network, Tencent, and Taiwan’s MuchTV, in addition to CCTV and Phoenix Television.

Select Presentations

Industries & Practices

International Arbitration & Litigation
Foreign Banks and Financial Institutions
Securities & Financial Services Litigation & Enforcement
  • Appellate
  • Asia-Pacific
  • Banking & Financial Institutions
  • China
  • Class Action Litigation
  • Corporate Governance & Compliance
  • Financial Services Regulatory
  • Foreign Banks and Financial Institutions
  • Immigration
  • International Arbitration & Litigation
  • Latin America
  • Securities & Financial Services Litigation & Enforcement

Professional & Civic

Professional Achievements

  • Director and Treasurer, Chinese Business Lawyers Association

Community Involvement

  • President of the Board of Directors, New York Chinese Cultural Center

Accolades

  • Listed as a “Rising Star” by New York Super Lawyers, 2018
  • Selected as “Young Sinologist” by the Ministry of Culture of the People’s Republic of China; nominated by the Chinese Consulate-General in New York
Geoffrey Sant