Tim Coleman, a Washington DC-based disputes partner at Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, died suddenly yesterday (3 November), after almost six years at the firm.
It is understood that an internal email to partners at the law firm said Coleman fell from a building in the US capital, although Freshfields declined to comment on the circumstances.
Coleman joined the Magic Circle law firm in March 2010 when Freshfields was expanding its US litigation team. He joined after spending four years at the now-defunct Dewey & LeBoeuf where he co-chaired the firm’s white-collar defence and investigations practice group.
Before this, he was a senior counsel to the deputy attorney general at the US Department of Justice for a year, and assistant US attorney at the US attorney’s office in the Southern District of New York from 1997 until 2005. He was also a litigation associate at Wall Street leader Cravath, Swaine & Moore for seven years.
His practice at Freshfields included advising on government investigations, where he regularly represented financial institutions and corporates in investigations of securities and commodities fraud, tax violations, corruption and other violations.
He was particularly experienced in managing complex multijurisdictional matters, having handled cases across Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East, and having studied at the European University Institute in Florence and the French National School for the Judiciary in Paris.
Freshfields said in a statement: ‘It is with deep sadness we report that our colleague and friend Tim Coleman passed away in Washington, DC. Tim’s enthusiasm for his family and friends touched everyone around him. His death is a profound loss to all of us personally and to Freshfields. We will do all we can to support his wife and family, who are very much in our thoughts and prayers.’