NAPLES, Fla., Oct. 5, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Chris Vernon, of the Naples based law firm Vernon Healy that represents clients facing financial litigation and arbitration, was named this week as Best Lawyers' 2012 Bet-the-Company Litigation Lawyer of the Year for the Naples and Ft. Myers Region.

Vernon is among a short list of 12 Southwest Florida attorneys to receive such distinction and the only one to have been named best lawyer for "Bet-the-Company" litigation. Only a single lawyer in each practice area in each region is being honored as "Lawyer of the Year" for 2012. Vernon has been repeatedly recognized by his peers in The Best Lawyers in America publication in the categories of commercial litigation, securities law, and Bet-the-Company litigation.

Vernon and his firm handle financial litigation and arbitration matters nationwide, though he is best known for his work educating and advocating on behalf of investors who are the targets of Wall Street misconduct. Vernon's firm has been on the forefront of investigations into Lehman notes sold to retirees who lost billions. The firm has represented investors with tens of millions of dollars in Lehman notes and other claims involving principal protected notes, structured notes, non-traded REITs and bond funds as well as investors harmed by incompetent or negligent hedge fund managers, wealth managers, family offices and those affected by land trust fraud.

Vernon Healy's extensive nationwide investigations were featured in the March 2011 AARP Magazine article "The Time Bomb in Your Nest Egg," in which Vernon warned investors about unscrupulous investment practices and products, specifically Lehman notes. The firm represents investors with more than $10 million in Lehman notes claims alone.

Over the past two years, Vernon has also been in the forefront of warning investors about non-traded Real Estate Investment Trusts or REITs, which financial advisors are pushing to retirees as income producing investments without adequately warning them about the pitfalls of these investments, many of which are similar in structure to Ponzi schemes. Regulators such as FINRA recently have begun echoing Vernon's calls for caution on this front, this week issuing a warning to investors about non-traded REITs. 

Susan Healy, Vernon's partner, has also been named by her peers as one of The Best Lawyers in America in the area of securities law and is one of è Bella magazine's Women to Watch. She has held leadership positions in both state and local bar associations and was recently elected statewide chair of the influential Florida Association of Women Lawyers (FAWL).

The attorneys at Vernon Healy collectively have more than 30 years of experience representing companies and individuals in financial litigation as well as investors who are victims of securities fraud, stock fraud and stock losses due to misconduct. Vernon Healy securities attorneys are experienced in securities arbitration and assist clients in pursuing recovery of losses caused by all manner of financial fraud and negligence. The firm's investigations have delved into myriad financial products and practices, including structured products such as principal protected notes and reverse convertibles, non-traded REITs, Preferred stock, TICs, private equity investments, tax shelters such as 419 plans, hedge funds and fund of hedge funds, Ponzi schemes, annuities and other insurance products and ETFs (exchange traded funds).

Christopher Vernon, attorney at law
Vernon Healy
999 Vanderbilt Beach Road, Suite 200
Naples, Florida 34108
www.vernonhealy.com