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by Vault Law Editors | November 19, 2010


Actor and comedian Will Ferrell, in an arbitration claim also involving fellow comedian Larry David, recently sought damages against JPMorgan Chase for what Ferrell's legal camp dubbed "unauthorized and unsuitable purchases" made with $18 million in preferred securities. The claim, presented before a three-person FINRA arbitration panel earlier this year, pitted Ferrell's California legal team against the bank's Greenberg Traurig counsel.

With David adding his famous name to the claimant cause as a "trustee", JPMorgan never stood much of a chance in terms of wry wit. Luckily for the finance giant, FINRA members don't seem to care much for comedy; Ferrell's decision to file the claim was, they argued, much like drinking whole milk amidst a SoCal heat wave—a bad choice. Not only was the longtime SNL funnyman denied the $18 million in damages, FINRA also saw fit to bill Ferrell, not JPMorgan, with $600,000 the latter had racked up in legal fees owed to Greenberg.

With a slew of comedy smashes under his belt—worth over $1 billion in box office revenues—it's a pretty safe bet that Ferrell will brush off this $600k wrist-slap with ease. If not, he can always fall back on a mean impression of celebrated mustache ambassador Robert Goulet to generate a little cash.

- sam reynolds


Filed Under: Law