Photo of Laura C. Baucus

Laura C. Baucus Member

Areas of Practice

Industries

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, 2000

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 6th Circuit, 2003
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, 2000
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan, 2005
  • U. S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin, 2015
  • U. S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin, 2015

Education

Wayne State University School of Law, J.D., magna cum laude

  • Order of the Coif

Catholic University of America, B.A., summa cum laude

  • Phi Beta Kappa

Ms. Baucus is Dykema's Financial Services Litigation Practice Group Leader and the immediate past Office Managing Member of the Firm’s Bloomfield Hills’ office. She is a member of Dykema’s Automotive Industry Group and the Leader of a Firm Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) team. She represents automakers and major suppliers in high-stakes commercial litigation with an emphasis on supplier contract disputes, troubled supplier litigation and warranty and cost recovery litigation. She also advises and represents banks and servicers in nationwide litigation involving mortgage loan servicing, credit card and mortgage products, escrow and insurance proceeds and note and collateral enforcement. Her contract practice focuses on negotiating and drafting supply contracts, service provider agreements and other commercial contracts for automotive companies.

Ms. Baucus has substantial experience in leading document, information and liability investigations. She also has worked extensively with corporate counsel to develop and implement internal investigation strategies. 

Ms. Baucus has extensive experience in legal project management, including:

  • Leader of legal project management team on a multi-million dollar litigation portfolio
  • Managing hundreds of multi-state financial lawsuits for national banks and servicers, including managing a team of 40 Dykema attorneys

Ms. Baucus frequently develops and presents seminars and continuing legal education (CLE) programs for legal and business clients on topics including contracting processes and risks, terminating distributorship risks, purchase order terms and conditions and battle of the forms, force majeure risks in the automotive industry, CFPB topics, Regulation X, legal risks related to digital mortgages and other federal statutes impacting bank and servicing risks.

Experience

Ms. Baucus represents companies in high-stakes disputes and large-volume portfolio litigation management. Her litigation experience includes:

  • Automotive (OEM, Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3) lawsuits, including warranty and cost recovery, troubled supplier litigation, supplier performance and termination, terms and conditions, and tooling recovery 
  • General commercial, contract and UCC disputes
  • Distributor / dealer termination disputes
  • Consumer financial services litigation, including defense of claims under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Truth in Lending Act (TILA), Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), and the Michigan Consumer Protection Act (MCPA), title priority disputes, credit card and retail installment contract disputes, as well as other related consumer financial service and real estate claims
  • Consumer financial services issues related to bankruptcy and work outs
  • Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) compliance issues and Regulation X litigation
  • Commercial real estate loan workouts and litigation, including loan/mortgage litigation, contested judicial foreclosures

Ms. Baucus’ contract practice focuses on:

  • Negotiating and drafting automotive industry contracts related to production supply and termination, raw material, long-term supply, engineering, research and development, tooling, assignment of purchase orders, sale of equipment, service providers and other commercial issues
  • Providing legal advice on the maintenance and termination of supply relationships and commercial transactions
  • Purchase order terms and conditions, including analyzing, negotiating and drafting terms

Financial Service Presentations

July 17, 2018: The Future of Home Loans: eNotes and eMortgages : Status of Implementation, Potential Legal Risks & Other Issues Down the Road; a webinar personation for the Dykema Litigation Institute Presents to over 200 attendees on legal issues related to the implementation and enforcement of eNotes and eMortgages, including the following:

  • An overview of the current state of eNote and eMortgage adoption
  • Use of eNotarization at closing
  • Legal risks involving the use of eNotes and eMortgages
  • The enforceability of eNotes and eMortgages including applying current paper note and mortgage case law to electronic documents
  • The various legal requirements for the electronic execution of documents and the electronic delivery of mandatory disclosures, including E-SIGN (Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act), the Uniform Electronic Transfer Act and the Uniform Commercial Code
  • Jurisdictional challenges to the use of eNotes and eMortgages
  • Potential liability for originators, lenders, investors, and servicers related to eNotes and eMortgages
  • Best practices for establishing and maintaining policies and procedures to ensure the enforceability of eNotes and eMortgages
  • Understanding where eNotes are stored and who owns and controls the eNote
  • Litigation trends and issues
  • Case studies involving eNotes and eMortgages

May 18, 2018: Digital Mortgages:  Implementation, Potential Legal Issues & Problems Down the Road?; an on-site presentation to servicing client on legal issues related to the implementation and enforcement of eNotes and eMortgages

April 17, 2018: Digital Mortgages:  Implementation, Potential Legal Issues & Problems Down the Road?; an on-site presentation to servicing client on legal issues related to the implementation and enforcement of eNotes and eMortgages

September 28, 2017: Truth in Lending Act: Rescission Claims and Other Issues Relevant to Mortgage Loan Originators and Servicers; an on-site presentation to servicing client on legal issues related to the TILA liability and litigation strategies

September 13, 2016: Beware of the Zombie Properties - An Overview of Issues Involving Blight, Ordinance Violations And Urban Decay; an on-site presentation to servicing client on legal issues related to the local ordinance and zoning code violations and potential liabilities

Automotive & Other Industry Presentations:

Supply Chain Disputes: How to Prepare for and Respond to Stop Ship Threats in the Automotive Industry; an annual automotive industry client update on the risks of interruptions in the supply chain, managing supply chain disruptions from a legal perspective, demanding adequate assurances of performance pursuant to the Uniform Commercial Code and seeking a injunctive relief in Court

June 28, 2018: Declaring Contractual Performance Commercially Impracticable in Response to Steel Tariffs; an automotive industry client presentation on the impact of tariffs on supplier performance, including force majeure and commercial impracticability issues

October 20, 2016: Supply Chain Management: Legal Risks in Terminating Distributor Agreements and How to Avoid Them; an on-site client presentation addressing legal risks associated with terminating a distributor agreement and covering potential claims that may be raised by the terminated distributor, such as franchisee claims, state-specific dealer protection and inventory-buy back statutes, contract and related claims

May, 2013: Nuts and Bolts – Assuring Your Contracts Say What You Mean; a presentation on the importance of the contracting process in the automotive industry, applicable terms and conditions, the battle of the forms, protecting parts inventory and tooling, and the enforcement and termination of contracts.

May 18, 2011: Notice of Force Majeure - How to Recognize It and Respond to It; an on-site presentation to automotive industry client on legal issues related to declaring that an event constitutes force majeure, the notice required pursuant to the Uniform Commercial Code, risks arising from declarations of force majeure, allocation requirements, how to respond to a force majeure notice, the differences between force majeure and commercial impracticality, and the potential impact on the parties’ contracts

May 3, 2011:  Earthquakes, Tsunamis and Force Majeure Clauses  - What Do They Mean To Your Business; a presentation to automotive industry client on legal issues related to declaring that an event constitutes force majeure, the notice required pursuant to the Uniform Commercial Code, risks arising from declarations of force majeure, allocation requirements, how to respond to a force majeure notice, the differences between force majeure and commercial impracticality, and the potential impact on the parties’ contracts

Memberships & Involvement

Oakland County Bar Association

Oakland County Bar Association Membership Committee

State Bar of Michigan

Federal Bar Association

Women Lawyers Association of Michigan

Selected as a Future Star by Benchmark Litigation, 2013-2019

Recognized in Michigan Super Lawyers® as a Rising Star for Civil Litigation Defense, Business Litigation and Consumer Law, Administrative Law, 2013-2014