Recent News

Turning Conflicts Checks from a 'No' to a 'Yes'

By J. Randolph Evans and Shari L. Klevens |

Managing conflicts of interest is an integral part of law firm practice. Yet attorneys often dread the conflicts review process because they believe they might have to turn down new business rather than accept new clients, if any conflicts are revealed.

Robin Frazer Clark

Appeals Panel Affirms $3.7M Faulty Seatbelt Verdict

By Greg Land |

The Georgia Court of Appeals has upheld a $3.7 million verdict awarded to the husband of a woman killed after she was ejected from a Jeep Wrangler during a single-car crash.

Thomas W.

Tommy Malone Earns Opponents' Healthy Respect

By Lawrence Viele Davidson |

Successful trial lawyers are usually natural raconteurs who love to tell their war stories, but the tales behind Tommy Malone's victories will clear a dinner table.

60 Years After Boycott, Using Montgomery Bus Can Be Trying

By Kim Chandler |

Two blocks from the spot where Rosa Parks refused to give up her bus seat to a white passenger in 1955, 17-year-old Tanesha Wilson listens to earbuds as she waits for the No. 8.

Judge Furman

Judge Denies Access to King & Spalding's Internal GM Notes

A federal judge has found that although there was probable cause to believe General Motors Co. committed a crime in failing to disclose a deadly ignition switch defect, plaintiffs lawyers failed to prove that GM's outside lawyers at King & Spalding should have to turn over their internal notes and memos on the matter.

Top Georgia Settlements of 2014

Find out what a case settlement is worth. Top Georgia Settlements of 2014 explores settlements covered by the Daily Report and affiliate publication VerdictSearch. Plus, top 10 case summaries and rankings by category.

Derek Bauer

Court Reverses $1M Verdict for Ex-Fighter Pilots; Attacks Continue

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Legal air strikes continue between former fighter pilots who compete in dueling military-style business consulting companies.


Appeals Court Dumps Suit Challenging Discontinued Fulton E-Filing System

By Greg Land |

More than seven months after the State Court of Fulton County dropped its longtime e-filing vendor, File & Serve, in favor of a competitor, the Georgia Court of Appeals has shut down an effort to have the service fees File & Serve collected declared illegal.

Laura Ashby on the set of the TV Show Jeopardy.

Ashby's 'Jeopardy' Run Ends, but the Internet Won't Forget Her

By Meredith Hobbs |

Laura Ashby's "Jeopardy" reign ended Tuesday night, after a tricky movie trivia question for Final Jeopardy allowed Julie Adair, a virtual assistant from Panama City, Florida, to surge from third place for the win.

Laura Ashby on the set of the TV Show Jeopardy.

Atlanta Lawyer Wins 'Jeopardy' Again

By Meredith Hobbs |

Returning "Jeopardy" champion and Miller & Martin associate Laura Ashby won her second game on Monday night, bringing her total winnings to $36,802.

Dax E. Lopez

Georgia Senators Haven't Backed Federal Judge Nominee Yet

By R. Robin McDonald |

UGA Law to Launch Jurist-in-Residence Program

By Meredith Hobbs |

Bar Exam Pass Rates Drop Across the Country

Bar exam passage rates sank in several big states, indicating a drop in the qualifications of students amid fewer law school applications.

Welcome to the Inaugural Issue of Daily Report's GC Yearbook

Welcome to the inaugural issue of Daily Report's GC Yearbook, with which we aim to provide insight into the ever-evolving role of the general counsel.

Atlanta task force for the homeless building

Homeless Shelter Case Must Be Decided by Jury, High Court Says

By Greg Land |

The Georgia Supreme Court has ruled that a jury should decide whether there was a conspiracy among several Atlanta business groups and individuals to drive the Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless out of business and wrongfully foreclose on the shelter it runs at the corner of Peachtree and Pine streets.

A. Lee Parks

Fulton to Pay $18M to Settle With Lawyers and Deputies

By Greg Land |

Fulton County has agreed to pay $18 million in back pay and attorney fees to settle claims by nearly 350 county lawyers and sheriff's deputies who had sued over a 1997 policy that paid some employees as much as 36 percent more than others in the same civil service category.

Justice David Nahmias

High Court Ruling May Open Door for Thousands of Workers to Seek Back Pay

By R. Robin McDonald |

The Supreme Court of Georgia on Monday said that workers employed by businesses and other third parties to perform in-home personal care services for the elderly, infirm, or medically homebound are not exempt from the state's minimum-wage law.

Debby Stone

Lawyer Career Coach Shares Rainmaking Advice

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Missed opportunities could be the No. 1 marketing mistake, according to lawyer-career coach Debby Stone.

Lester Tate

JQC Says It Did Not Seek or Want Former Brunswick Judge Prosecuted

By R. Robin McDonald |

The chairman of the state judicial watchdog agency has notified the Fulton County district attorney that the agency did not seek or want a criminal prosecution of the Brunswick Circuit's former chief judge, despite what county prosecutors may have said in court.

James Cole, left, and Sally Yates, right.

DOJ's 'Yates Memo' Goes Too Far, Former Deputy AG Says

James Cole, the U.S. deputy attorney general from 2010 until January, swung repeatedly at his Justice Department successor's signature reforms on white-collar criminal prosecutions Friday, calling them a departure from reality and "impractical." Cole, who spoke at an American Bar Association Section of Business Law meeting, said: "As the memo is put into practice, I think this all-or-nothing approach [on corporations earning credit for cooperating with the government] will prove to be impractical."

Court Rejects Attorney Fees on Enforcement of 1998 Homeless Pact

A renewed fight over enforcement of a 17-year-old agreement on the treatment of homeless people in Miami went to court in 2014, but a federal appeals court rejected attorney fees in the latest round of litigation.

Lauren Sprayberry

Lawyer Beats $25 Fine for Her Cellphone Buzzing in Court

By Alyson Palmer |

An assistant public defender in Griffin has won an appeal over a $25 fine levied against her when her cellphone vibrated in court.

Michael J. Moore, United States Attorney

U.S. Attorney in Macon to Resign

By R. Robin McDonald |

Michael Moore, the U.S. attorney in Macon, is resigning his post effective Nov. 23, he announced in a news release late Friday.

John Foy, Attorney. Marta Bus advertisement.

Missed Hearing Spurs Legal Malpractice Action Against 'The Strong Arm'

By Greg Land |

A legal malpractice suit accuses two law firms of failing to send a lawyer to a hearing, causing the dismissal of a potentially high-dollar personal injury case.

Nelson Otis Tyrone III

Atlanta Trial Lawyer Fights in a New Arena

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Atlanta trial lawyer Nelson Tyrone can look forward to the relative safety of courtroom fighting after surviving a charity boxing match Thursday night.

Marta Buckhead Transit Station

Federal Judge Considers Whether to Hold Transit Agency in Contempt Over ADA Claims

By R. Robin McDonald |

A federal judge in Atlanta has ordered MARTA to explain why he should not hold the transit authority in contempt for a 13-year failure to comply with his 2002 injunction to improve services to its disabled riders.

Andrew Phillips

Analyzing the Suit Over Georgia Voters' Personal Data Leak

By Andrew Phillips |

Did the Georgia secretary of state release the Social Security numbers, driver's license numbers, and dates of birth of every registered Georgia voter?

Suleiman al Nahdi

K&S Partner's First Gitmo Clients Are Released a Decade After He Took Cases

By Meredith Hobbs |

A decade after Atlanta lawyer John Chandler took them on as pro bono clients, two Yemeni men imprisoned at the U.S. naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, have finally been released.

Members of Greenberg Traurig’s product liability group.

Greenberg Traurig: Product Liability

By Mary Welch |

Lori Cohen is regarded as one of the country's top defense attorneys in pharmaceutical and medical device products liability litigation.

Laughlin McDonald

Lawyers Give Mixed Reviews to Suit Over Deal Appointments

By Alyson Palmer |

Lawyers well-versed in political law are giving mixed reviews to a suit challenging Gov. Nathan Deal's authority to fill by appointment three new judgeships on the Georgia Court of Appeals.

An overview of the AVLF Winetasting event.

The Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation Winetasting [SLIDESHOW]

The Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation held its 24th annual AVLF Winetasting on Nov. 5 at the new home of the Georgia State University College of Law.

Sanctions Against Foreclosure Defense Lawyer Point to Broader Problem [LETTER]

The recent Court of Appeals sanctions against Grady A. Roberts III illustrate a broader problem with the bar's (non)regulation of attorneys who dabble in the area of foreclosure defense.

Alston & Bird: Overall Litigation

By Mary Welch |

Alston & Bird attorneys in 2014 won a case before the U.S. Supreme Court and two jury trials that secured more than $200 million for clients. These matters highlighted a year in which the firm represented more than 40 Fortune 500 companies in all sorts of litigation areas—class actions, securities, products liability, environmental regulation and torts.

Rickman Brown represents the alarm company suing its former counsel.

Alarm Company Hit With $9.7 Million Judgment Sues Former Counsel for Malpractice

By R. Robin McDonald |

Faced with paying a $9.7 million judgment to a former customer who was raped in her DeKalb County home, a Colorado home alarm company is attempting to recoup the money by suing its former lawyers.

In-House Legal and Law Firm Litigation Departments of the Year

By Jonathan Ringel |

The Daily Report identifies five in-house teams and seven outside counsel teams for recognition.

Secretary of State Calls Voter Data Release 'Clerical Error'

By Kathleen Foody |

Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp acknowledged Wednesday that Social Security numbers and other personal information for the state's more than 6 million registered voters were released last month to political parties and media organizations, as his office faces a lawsuit filed this week.

From left, back row: Tyler Arnold, Ryan Hood, Scott Wandstrat, Jason Bring, Scott Taylor and Aaron Danzig. Front row: Henry Chalmers, Jennifer Shelfer and Glenn Hendrix.

Arnall Golden Gregory: White-Collar Defense (co-winner)

By Mary Welch |

The role of any defense lawyer is to "fully inform the client of plea offerings or settlements, and then it comes down to the client's choice," says Aaron Danzig, who chairs Arnall Golden Gregory's government investigations and special matters practice.

From left, back row: Stephen Vaughn, Steven Pritchett, Lisa Welgast, Frank DeBorde, Jeff Douglass, John Lockett, Hillary Kinsey, Patrick Lowther and Eric Lawson. Front row: Simon Malko, Seslee Smith, Lewis Hassett, Ross Albert and Jessica Pardi.

Morris, Manning & Martin: White-Collar Defense (co-winner)

By Mary Welch |

Ross A. Albert, a partner in Morris, Manning & Martin's corporate and commercial litigation practice who led the defense, said that "while it's unusual to have a bench trial rather than a jury trial, what was rare was the 44-page written opinion that carefully considered and rejected every factual contention put forth by the SEC."

From left: Meghan Magruder, Shelby Guilbert and Tony Tatum.

King & Spalding: Insurance (Large Firm)

By Mary Welch |

As a rule, traditional big law firms tend not to brag, often deferring to their clients to speak about courtroom wins. But sometimes bragging is necessary, as when King & Spalding, in speaking about its national and global insurance disputes practice, called it a "blockbuster year."

Members of Greenberg Traurig’s labor and employment litigation section.

Greenberg Traurig: Labor & Employment

By Mary Welch |

Greenberg Traurig has a big legal arsenal in its labor and employment practice, which includes 120 attorneys, 14 of whom are Atlanta-based.

From left, back row: Thomas Martin, Michael Schroder, Frederick Ferrand and Thomas Ward. Front row: Stephen Schatz and Mark Dietrichs.

Swift Currie McGhee & Hiers: Insurance (Midsize Firm)

By Mary Welch |

"There is a general feeling that insurance companies want to deny claims, but that is not the truth," says Stephen M. Schatz, the managing partner of Swift Currie McGhee & Hiers. "They don't want to overpay. They want to resolve the cases as quickly and as reasonably as possible. They really don't want to go after witnesses, pay attorney fees and then go to trial and be on the witness stand. That is not fun for insurance adjusters. They really want to close the file."

The city of Atlanta Legal Department.

City of Atlanta: Government

By Lawrence Viele Davidson |

The city's legal department is building a reputation as a place that handles huge cases in-house rather than farming them out to private firms. It's also becoming known for allowing attorneys new to the department to play cleanup hitter, and not just utility infielder, in these big games.

From left, standing: Peri Demestihas and Amber Murray. Front row: Gretchen Nagy and Noah Peeters.

Jamestown: Real Estate

By Lawrence Viele Davidson |

It's a Jamestown philosophy to have their lawyers at the table from the beginning, said Jamestown Chief Executive Officer Matt Bronfman, who used to be its general counsel.

The SunTrust Banks legal department.

SunTrust Banks Inc.: Large Office

By Lawrence Viele Davidson |

When Fortin became general counsel, SunTrust assets were $46.5 billion. He had 20 attorneys in-house and contracted with outside counsel in different states for different needs. As in the entire industry, the bank grew, regulation decreased and the combination proved problematic.

From left, back row: Andrea Hayworth, Carole Sims, Shannon Coleman and Meg Blackwood. Front row: Jonathan Tylinski, Meredith Lackey and John Price.

Colonial Pipeline Co.: Quality of Life

By Lawrence Viele Davidson |

Colonial Pipeline Co. in-house lawyers don't just pack a lunch for work. Some pack a change of clothes and a toothbrush in an overnight bag too, in what they call a "go bag."

From left: Emily Avant, Lee Williams, David Vigilante and Michelle Hylton.

CNN and Turner Broadcasting System Inc.: Technology

By Lawrence Viele Davidson |

Whether they are in the courtroom or the boardroom, attorneys deal with paper and documents. But the lawyers at CNN are spending a great deal of time dealing with small, remote-controlled aircraft with cameras.

Justice Keith R. Blackwell

Justices Rule 5-2 That Worker's Comp Doesn't Prevent Apportionment

By Alyson Palmer |

Still debating the reach of the state's 10-year-old apportionment statute, a divided Georgia Supreme Court on Monday held that workers' compensation law does not prevent defendants in a tort suit from trying to shift blame to the employer of a plaintiff who is injured on the job.

Juvenile Justice Center

Fulton County Juvenile Court to Celebrate National Adoption Day

By Greg Land |

The Fulton County Juvenile Court will host a ceremony celebrating its 14th annual National Adoption Day observance on Saturday, during which 11 children will have their adoptions finalized.

L-R: Steve Schatz, Bobby Potter, Mike Rosetti and Mark Goodman.

After Hours: Spotlights Lawyers' Lives Outside Their Offices [SLIDESHOW]

Check out our gallery of photos from recent events for legal professionals. Represented are Swift Currie McGhee & Hiers seminar and cocktail reception Oct. 8 at Cobb Galleria Centre to celebrate its 50th anniversary and The Georgia Asian Pacific American Bar Association hosted its annual In-House Counsel Dinner on Oct. 1 at Ray’s on the River, in an event sponsored by Alston & Bird.

There were up to 235 deputies at the Fulton County Courthouse in 2005. A panel urged increasing to 314 deputies, but only 152 deputies and eight private guards are there now.

Prosecutor Paralyzed in Shooting Set to Return to Work

Officials in the Fulton County District Attorney's office say a prosecutor who was paralyzed in a domestic violence incident is returning to work to focus on domestic violence cases.

Philip C. Henry

Hospital Faces Only $4.5M in $36M Verdict Over Botched Surgery

By Greg Land |

A Fulton County jury awarded $4.5 million to the children and estate of a woman who spent the last 19 months of her life hospitalized and partially paralyzed after a surgeon preparing to remove a kidney mistakenly tied off her aorta, cutting off blood flow to the lower half of her body for more than 50 hours.

Gov. Nathan Deal

Suit Claims State Constitution Requires Elections to Fill New Appeals Court Seats

By R. Robin McDonald |

Several Georgia attorneys are asking a Fulton County judge to bar three appointees to the state's newly expanded Court of Appeals from taking office, saying that their appointments by Gov. Nathan Deal were unconstitutional.

Beluga Whales at the Georgia Aquarium

Aquarium Won't Appeal After Losing Battle to Import Belugas

The Georgia Aquarium has decided not to appeal a federal judge's ruling that effectively prevents it from importing 18 beluga whales from Russia.

On the Move

Hunter Maclean Adds Real Estate Partner

By Meredith Hobbs |

Savannah firm Hunter Maclean has added a partner and two associates.

Gov. Nathan Deal

Georgia Gov. Deal Stands By Order to Ban Syrian Refugees

By Kathleen Foody |

Gov. Nathan Deal on Tuesday stood by an executive order preventing Syrian refugees from being resettled in Georgia despite legal experts' doubts about states' authority over the federal program.

Michael Ciatti

King & Spalding Increases Size of New Partner Class Amid Continued Growth

By Meredith Hobbs |

In a sign of optimism, King & Spalding has elected 24 new partners—a marked increase over the 17 it promoted last year.

Victor Reynolds

Cobb DA: 300 Years for No-Injury Shooting Is Part of Anti-Gang Strategy

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

After a judge sentenced a man to 50 years in prison for a shooting in which no one was injured, Cobb County's top prosecutor sounded marginally satisfied.

Robert Citronberg

In Final Chapter of DA's Feud With Former Judge, Justices Uphold Grant of New Trial in Murder Cases

By Alyson Palmer |

Prosecutors cannot appeal a trial judge's refusal to recuse from post-trial proceedings, the Georgia Supreme Court held on Monday in a ruling that also upheld the trial judge's decision to give new trials to a pair convicted of murder.

John R. Monroe, Vice President and Member of Board of Directors, GeorgiaCarry.Org

Gun Group Challenges Makeup of Code Revision Commission

By Greg Land |

Gun rights group GeorgiaCarry.Org is challenging the legitimacy of the state Code Revision Commission, the body responsible for revising and annotating Georgia's legal code as new laws are enacted.

Robert D. James Jr.

Supreme Court of Georgia Vacates DeKalb Ex-Superintendent's Sentence

By R. Robin McDonald |

The Supreme Court of Georgia has vacated a 12-month jail sentence imposed on a former DeKalb County school superintendent and remanded the case with instructions that a trial court judge decide whether the defendant testified truthfully at a public corruption trial.

Judge Kathryn Tanksley

Another Cobb Judgeship Opens for 2016 Elections

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Cobb County State Court Judge Kathryn Tanksley has told the Daily Report she plans to retire at the end of her current term, creating an open seat for the 2016 election.

What to Do If the FBI Comes Knocking

By J. Randolph Evans and Shari L. Klevens |

Imagine this scenario: An agent of the FBI or another governmental agency comes to an attorney's office, either by appointment or unannounced. The agent asks questions about one of the attorney's clients who is not subject to a formal governmental investigation. The agent asks about the client's business, relationships or dealings. Or perhaps the agent asks to see the client's financial documents or even client files.

Georgia Considering Stance on Daily Fantasy Sports Websites

Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens said his office is investigating whether daily fantasy sports violate state law after New York ordered two of the industry's largest companies to stop accepting bets, saying the operations constituted illegal gambling.

Wilson Smith

Vidalia Lawyer Will Appeal 8-Year Sentence for Stealing Settlement Funds

By Greg Land |

A Vidalia lawyer will appeal the eight-year prison sentence handed down for his guilty plea to two charges related to what prosecutors said was stealing more than $1 million in settlement funds from clients.

Georgia Supreme Court

One Lawyer Suspended; Another Surrenders License

The Supreme Court of Georgia on Monday issued discipline decisions regarding the following lawyers: James A. Meaney III, three-month suspension with conditions for reinstatement and Wilson R. Smith, voluntary surrender of license

J. Mac C. Pilgrim, Pilgrim Law Group, Villa Rica Georgia.

Corrected: Federal Suits Against Former Pastor Allege Sexual Misconduct

By R. Robin McDonald |

A Douglasville Baptist church is being sued in federal court in Atlanta over church officials' firing of an elementary school teacher who reported that the church pastor had sexually harassed and groped her, then threatened her if she reported him.

Christopher McFadden, Georgia Court of Appeals Judge

Appeals Court Punishes Foreclosure Defense Lawyer for Making Frivolous Arguments

By Alyson Palmer |

In an unusual 12-judge decision, the Georgia Court of Appeals has sanctioned a lawyer who represents borrowers trying to stop foreclosures—and warned him to quickly re-evaluate other appeals he has pending so he can avoid further punishment.

Former BigLaw Clerk Pleads to $5.6M Insider Trading Scheme

The onetime managing clerk at New York's Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, the lone remaining defendant in a New Jersey-based criminal case, has admitted to his role in a lucrative insider trading scheme.

No Obligation Found to Feed Feral Cats at Condo Complex

A claim that a condominium's rules against feeding stray animals violated a statute barring animal cruelty was rejected by a Staten Island judge.

Dacheng founder Peng Xuefeng and Dentons global chair Joseph Andrew at a signing ceremony in Beijing, Jan. 27, 2015.

It's Official: Dentons Merger With Dacheng Creates Global Giant

Ten months after Dentons reached an agreement to combine with Chinese legal juggernaut Dacheng, the firm announced Tuesday that the landmark deal is now final.

Vincent Schmeltz's Twitter page.

Chicago Lawyer Who Tweeted Photos From Federal Trial to Face Judge

Vincent "Trace" Schmeltz III, a Barnes & Thornburg white-collar partner in Chicago, could face sanctions after he tweeted photos from a federal criminal trial. The tweets didn't go unnoticed. U.S. District Chief Judge Rubén Castillo has ordered Schmeltz, co-chairman of the firm's financial and regulatory litigation practice, to appear on Nov. 24 to explain why he shouldn't face sanctions for violating court rules.

Sam Casey

Transgender Honduran Woman Wins Immigration Case With Pro Bono Help From Sutherland

By Meredith Hobbs |

After more than three years of pro bono litigation, Sam Casey, an associate at Sutherland Asbill & Brennan, has won a difficult immigration case for a transgender woman from Honduras.

L-R: Miguel Castro and Mark Issa

Gwinnett Jury Awards $3.7M in Car Wreck Case

By Greg Land |

A Gwinnett County jury awarded $3.7 million to a man who, after a car wreck, claimed to have developed debilitating lower back pain that ultimately required spinal surgery.

A UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter similar to this one crashed into a Georgia airfield in 2014.

Sikorsky Sued After Fatal Black Hawk Helicopter Crash

Families of three U.S. Army soldiers have filed a lawsuit against Sikorsky Aircraft.

Crash Case Against Cobb Health Board Settles for $1.75M

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A man who suffered a back injury when his car was hit from behind by a Ford Econoline van owned by the Cobb County Board of Health has received a $1.75 million settlement, lawyers on both sides said this week.

Malcolm Wittenburg at State Bar court in 2003

Disbarment Urged for IP Lawyer With Checkered Record

Attorney Malcom Wittenberg, who was suspended for three years following an insider-trading conviction, handled hundreds of matters before the PTO without authorization, according to the State Bar Court.

Lawyering Without a License: Just Don't Do It

Al Jazeera's embarrassing disclosure that its GC wasn't licensed highlights what could be a thorny problem for legal departments.

Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates.

The (Unintended) Consequences of the Yates Memorandum

The Yates Memorandum, recently released by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), lays out the DOJ’s game plan for increasing the number of cases it brings against individuals who engage in or facilitate corporate misconduct.

Jenny Mendelsohn of Alston & Bird.

When a Home Is More Than a Place to Sleep [In Service]

By Jenny A. Mendelsohn |

One recent Saturday morning, over black coffee in a paper cup, Ms. Crawford softly told me her story. A few months before, she was happily moving into her new Atlanta rental home with her fiancé and 6-year-old daughter. She dreamed of starting a new life with her small family and a second child who was on the way.

L-R: Glenn Hendrix, Jonathan Eady and Jonathan Golden of Arnall Golden Gregory.

Arnall Golden Gets New Managing Partner

By Meredith Hobbs |

Arnall Golden Gregory will get a new leader in January. Jonathan Eady will take over as managing partner from Glenn Hendrix, who's had the post for eight years.

Family of Naked Man Shot By Cop Files Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The family of an unarmed naked man fatally shot by an Atlanta-area police officer has filed a federal wrongful death lawsuit.

Judge Marvin Shoob

Judge Rejects AG's Bid to Save Part of Garnishment Law

By Alyson Palmer |

A federal judge who declared Georgia's post-judgment garnishment unconstitutional has rejected a request by the state attorney general to reconsider a key aspect of his order, but the judge clarified that his ruling does not apply to garnishments against corporate debtors.

KKK 'Adopt a Highway' Case Moved to State Supreme Court

Georgia's Court of Appeals says it doesn't have jurisdiction to determine whether the state violated a Ku Klux Klan group's constitutional rights by refusing to allow it into a highway cleanup program.

Mallet, legal code and scales of justice. Law concept, studio shots

Georgia Man Acquitted After 29 Years Files Civil Rights Suit

By Kate Brumback |

A Georgia man says he was frightened into pleading guilty for a murder he didn't commit after police dangled him off a bridge three decades ago, brought charges against his parents and threatened him with the death penalty.

Steve Berman.

With Ignition-Switch Punitives Possible, GM’s ‘War Room’ Details Sought

Amid a ruling on Monday that General Motors Co. could face punitive damages over its ignition switch defect, plaintiffs lawyers poised for the first trial are demanding details about what they say was a “war room” the automaker created in the recalls’ aftermath.

Tom Mew

Employment Litigator Switches to the Plaintiffs Side

By Meredith Hobbs |

Employment litigator Tom Mew IV has switched from the defense side to the plaintiffs side, leaving Rogers & Hardin after 14 years for litigation boutique Buckley Beal.

Ga. Legal Services legal team. L-R: Ted Roethke, Laura Rivera, Dawson Morton, Hilary Smith and Isaac Raisner.

Georgia Farm Pays $485K to Settle Migrants' Class Action

By R. Robin McDonald |

One of the state's largest farms and its affiliated businesses have agreed to pay $485,000 to migrant workers to compensate them for violating federal wage-and-hour laws.

A 5-Step Response When Your Company Suspects Workplace Fraud

The numbers are astounding. According to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), an estimated 5 percent of annual revenues are lost to financial crime.

Circuit Court Backs NLRB On Social Media Conduct, Voids Handbook Provision

The National Labor Relations Board has handed down numerous decisions over the past few years ruling that what may appear to be bad behavior by employees is actually protected concerted activity under Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act. Usually the board gets the last word, but one case made it up to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.

<b>WHO’S INVITED?:</b> “The rules preclude one from, for example, going to a program that’s closed to the public,” Chief Judge Diane Wood of the Seventh Circuit said.

Judges' Trips Reflect Gray Area in Ethics Rules

Federal appeals judges routinely travel across the country to speak and teach, and their hosts pay the cost. Rarely do judges visit legal advocacy groups that appear often in court, according to a National Law Journal review of judges' annual financial reports.

L-R: R. Shane Lazenby and Kyle M. Moore.

All-Veteran Law Group Looks Forward With Shared Past

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A renovated house near the shore of Lake Lanier in North Georgia serves as a base for three lawyers who fought real wars before moving on to courtroom battles.

Laura Ashby on the set of the TV Show Jeopardy.

Who Is Atlanta's 'Jeopardy'-Winning Lawyer?

By Meredith Hobbs |

Atlanta lawyer Laura Ashby became the newest champion on TV's "Jeopardy!" on Friday with an $18,401 win.

Doug Chalmers

Chalmers to Represent Cityhood Group in Possible Election Challenge

By R. Robin McDonald |

The LaVista Hills Alliance, which lost its bid to incorporate a new city in northern DeKalb County by 139 votes, has hired a Republican election law attorney to explore the possibility of legally challenging the vote.

W. Winston Briggs

In Final Months, Old Columbus Firm Settles Millions in Legal Malpractice Claims

By Greg Land |

A 140-year-old Columbus law firm that is set to dissolve at the end of the year has settled claims that its malpractice cost a former client millions.

And their off ! 2015 Run For Justice.

The Run for Justice [SLIDESHOW & VIDEO]

The weekend's rain didn't dampen spirits for the Run for Justice, an annual fundraiser for the Atlanta Legal Aid Society.

Elbert P. Tuttle U.S. Court of Appeals Building

11th Circuit Taking Applications for New Clerk

By Alyson Palmer |

For the second time in about a year, the Atlanta-based federal appeals court is looking for a new clerk of court.

Tyrone Brooks

Ex-Georgia Lawmaker Sentenced to Year and a Day in Prison

By Kate Brumback |

A federal judge on Monday sentenced a former Georgia state representative and civil rights activist to a year and a day in prison for fraud.

Rep. Wendell Willard

Ga. Justices Won't Step In on Garnishment, Turning Focus to Legislature

By Alyson Palmer |

It appears that any fix to constitutional problems found in Georgia's garnishment statutes by a federal judge in September will need to come from the state Legislature.

Justices Hang Up on Call for Cellphone Location Protection

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday refused to decide whether law enforcement officers must have a warrant to obtain cellphone location information. The court denied a petition from the Eleventh Circuit. A split among the circuits disappeared last month when the Fourth Circuit agreed to rehear a case in which a three-judge panel—contrary to the Eleventh Circuit—said authorities need a warrant to obtain tower location data.

Judge Eleanor Ross

Jonesboro Woman Sentenced After Buying Gun Used to Kill Officer

By R. Robin McDonald |

A Jonesboro woman who bought a Glock semi-automatic pistol and 50-round magazine drum for a convicted felon from a Jonesboro pawn shop has been sentenced to six months of home confinement and a year of probation for lying on a federal gun purchase form, the U.S. attorney in Atlanta announced. U.S. District Judge Eleanor Ross, above, sentenced Jalita Jenera Johnson.

The Atlanta chapter of the National Association of African Americans in Human Resources held its annual Employment Law Update on Oct. 14.

After Hours: Spotlights Lawyers' Lives Outside Their Offices

Check out our gallery of photos from recent events for legal professionals. Represented are Team Arnall Golden Gregory, a group from Taylor English Duma, attorneys from Jackson Lewis and the Atlanta chapter of the National Association of African Americans in Human Resources.

L to R: Manoj Varghese and Von Avery DuBose

Rapper Young Jeezy Defeats Ex-Partner's Multimillion-Dollar Claims

By Greg Land |

A Fulton County jury turned aside claims to millions of dollars by a former producer and business partner of Atlanta-based rapper Young Jeezy.

Marlan Wilbanks

University of Georgia Law Alumnus Funds New Child Sex Abuse Legal Clinic

By Meredith Hobbs |

The University of Georgia School of Law is launching the first legal clinic in the nation to assist victims of child sexual abuse, thanks to a gift from an alumnus, Atlanta plaintiffs lawyer Marlan Wilbanks.

A view of the Bobby Jones Golf Course in Atlanta.

Bobby Jones Golf Course Desegregation Exhibit to Open Saturday

By Alyson Palmer |

A watershed event in the desegregation of Atlanta will be commemorated on Saturday with the opening of an exhibit at Bobby Jones Golf Course.

Judge Gerald Tjoflat, U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

Divided Panel Strikes Down Florida Credit Card Law as Free Speech Violation

By Alyson Palmer |

A Florida law that regulates how merchants handle credit card swipe fees violates the First Amendment, a divided panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit has ruled.

Scott Wandstrat

Proportionality and the Scope of Discovery in 2015 Amendments

By Scott A. Wandstrat |

This is the second in a series of articles on the practical implications of the 2015 amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Unless Congress takes action to block them, they will go into effect on Dec. 1, 2015.

Juvenile Justice and Schools Training Offered at Monday Session

By Greg Land |

The Fulton County Juvenile Court and Atlanta Public School System will host a daylong training session for school and juvenile justice professionals as part of the county's School-Justice Partnership on Monday, Nov. 9, at the State Bar of Georgia.

Home Depot Employee Sentenced for Stealing Personal Data

By R. Robin McDonald |

A former Home Depot employee has been sentenced to federal prison for stealing personally identifying information from fellow Home Depot employees, the U.S. attorney in Atlanta announced Thursday.

Ryan K. Walsh

Patent Litigator Jumps From Plaintiffs Firm Robbins Geller to Jones Day

By Meredith Hobbs |

Patent litigator Ryan Walsh has left national plaintiffs' firm Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd to join Jones Day as a partner.

Corrected: Fulton Authority Acts on Bond Issues for Movie Studio Complex, Midtown Towers

By Meredith Hobbs |

Midtown apartments and a movie studio were among the tax-incentive bond issues considered by the Fulton County Development Authority at its most recent board meeting. It was a crowded agenda for the board, bond lawyers and their clients, with 10 transactions on the table, including five bond resolutions.

James Radford

Georgia State University Ordered to Pay $75K to Schizophrenic Student Ousted From Campus Dorm

By R. Robin McDonald |

An Atlanta college student who sued after he was removed from university housing following his disclosure that he had been diagnosed with schizophrenia has won a $75,000 judgment against Georgia State University.

L to R: Charles Wilson and Beverly Martin

Split Panel Rejects Former University Counselors' Free Speech Suit

By Alyson Palmer |

A split federal appeals court panel has rejected a First Amendment lawsuit by former Georgia State University employees who say they were fired for complaining about problems in the school's counseling center.

Judge Gerald Tjoflat, U.S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

Tjoflat, Country's Longest-Serving Active Federal Judge, Presses On

By Alyson Palmer |

When it comes to retirement, federal judges have a pretty good deal.

Survey: Hot Deal Market May Cool Down Soon

Executives and M&A professionals see a cooling off period for the deal market in the future. This forecast doesn't extend to every industry, though.

'Love Your Lawyer Day' to Combat Nasty Jokes in the Law

The attempt to thwart negativity against the legal profession has gathered momentum this fall along with the publication of the book "Comebacks for Lawyer Jokes." Others in the industry have decided to fight the stigma: None other than the American Bar Association picked up the banner last month. Friday is "Love Your Lawyer Day."


Judge Won't Pause Civil Suit in Georgia Gym Death for Feds

A judge rejected the Justice Department's request to temporarily halt evidence-gathering in a civil lawsuit by the parents of a Georgia teenager found dead at school in a rolled up gym mat.

Barry Morgan

For Marching Bands, Cobb Solicitor Is Elevated to Judge

By Andy Peters |

There was a time when Barry Morgan faced a decision on his career path. He could remain the lead band director at a large Cobb County high school. Or he could attend law school at night and pursue a legal career.

Precious Felder

Conyers Jury Awards $2.25M for Fraud and Breach of Contract

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A Florida-based entertainment business consulting company has won a $2.25 million verdict against a Conyers businessman and his company on claims of breach of contract and fraud.

Judge: Clayton County Must Split Airport Booze Taxes With College Park

By Greg Land |

A Fulton County judge has ruled that Clayton County must split the proceeds of alcohol sales at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport with the city of College Park, overriding the county's arguments that it should keep all of the taxes, even though large sections of the airport's terminals and concourses are within College Park's city limits.

Former Gov. Zell Miller, Others Write to Urge Lenient Sentence for Brooks

By R. Robin McDonald |

A former Georgia governor and members of the state's legal and civil rights communities have sent letters to a federal judge in support of a former Georgia legislator who faces a possible federal prison sentence this week.

On the Move: ACLU Hires Dodson as Advocate to Fight Mass Incarceration in the South

By Meredith Hobbs |

Marissa McCall Dodson is joining the American Civil Liberties Union's national campaign to stop mass incarceration, and will be the ACLU's Southern region advocate for criminal justice reform.

Dacheng founder Peng Xuefeng and Dentons global chair Joseph Andrew at a signing ceremony in Beijing, Jan. 27, 2015.

Dentons Expands Across Pacific Rim Amid Busy Merger Market

Global juggernaut Dentons is planning a new cross-border amalgamation with 500-lawyer Australian firm Gadens and Singapore’s Rodyk & Davidson, a 200-lawyer firm. Meanwhile, Dinsmore & Shohl and Ike Sorkin's New York shop are doing deals of their own.

$1.125M Verdict in Buckhead Car Wreck Case

By Greg Land |

A Fulton County jury awarded $1.125 million to a woman injured in a three-vehicle wreck in Buckhead three years ago.

Letter to the Editor: Court of Appeals Choices Are a Wake-Up Call

Despite protestations by many in the leadership of our state, including those who sit on the Judicial Nominating Commission, that the lack of diverse gubernatorial appointments is only a function of "lack of qualified nominees," Gov. Nathan Deal's recent appointments to the three newly created Court of Appeals seats confirms that "lack of qualified nominees" is not a reason for the lack of diverse appointments.

L to R: Norman Fletcher and Michael Terry

Judicial Watchdog's Authority Challenged in Supreme Court

By R. Robin McDonald |

State Court judges unhappy that the Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission had declared that courts should remain largely open to the public, and that judges should not file amicus briefs in litigation, asked the state Supreme Court Monday to curtail the judicial watchdog agency's authority.

Justice P. Harris Hines

With High Court Victory on Pensions, Atlanta Looks to Recoup $400K-Plus in Fees

By Greg Land |

The city of Atlanta's state Supreme Court win over a challenge to changes in its employee pension plan Monday shifts the matter back to the Fulton County judge who first dismissed the challenge to decide if the city is entitled to more than $400,000 in attorney fees.

Volkswagen Emissions Litigation Turning Unwieldy

Chaos is building in courts across the country as about 400 Volkswagen emissions class actions have raced forward—with two federal judges ordering immediate settlement talks—despite a pending decision on whether to move the cases to multidistrict litigation.

Jeffrey D. Braintwain

In Defense Win, Ga. Justices Give More Guidance on ER Cases

By Alyson Palmer |

In a win for health care providers, the Georgia Supreme Court on Monday rejected plaintiffs' efforts to keep a jury from considering their malpractice case under the gross negligence standard the state Legislature adopted for emergency room cases in 2005.

The names of black potential jurors in the murder trial of Timothy Foster were highlighted in green on this Floyd County, Georgia document cited in Foster's Supreme Court case claiming race discrimination in jury selection.

Justices Weigh Evidence of Racial Bias in Georgia Jury Selection

U.S. Supreme Court justices on Monday criticized Georgia prosecutors who used race as a factor in striking all potential black jurors from the 1987 murder trial of a black defendant. "Isn't this as clear a Batson violation as we are ever going to see?" Justice Elena Kagan asked of Deputy Georgia Attorney General Beth Burton, who represented the prosecutors' actions.

Georgia Supreme Court

One Lawyer Surrenders License; Another Is Reinstated

The Supreme Court of Georgia has issued discipline decisions regarding the following lawyers: Michael L. Terrell, voluntary surrender of license, Kimberly L. Copeland, reinstated

Stephen B. Bright

US Supreme Court Troubled by DA's Rejection of Black Jurors

By Mark Sherman |

The Supreme Court signaled support Monday for a black death row inmate in Georgia who claims prosecutors improperly kept African-Americans off the jury that convicted him of killing a white woman.

Illinois High School Association Class 8A high school championship football in 2014.

High School Football Concussion Class Action Thrown Out

The first class action filed against a high school football governing body over concussion-related injuries was tossed out of an Illinois court this week.

L to R: Jay Abt and Gabe Banks

Gang Members Attending Trial Alarmed Prosecutor, Defense Lawyers

By Greg Land |

Lawyers said a recent murder trial in which the two defendants were members of the Crips street gang and the victim—and most of the witnesses—were members of the archrival Bloods was unusually disconcerting.

L to R: John Webb and Andrew Gebhardt

$2.3M Settlement for Widow of Sculptor Who Would Have Made MLK Statue

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The widow of a well-known Georgia sculptor has received a $2.35 million settlement for his death in a July road wreck, according to her attorney.

Who Can Sue an Attorney, and How to Stop Them

By J. Randolph Evans and Shari L. Klevens |

Not just anyone can sue an attorney when an alleged mistake has been made. An attorney's liability is limited to the class of people to whom the attorney owes a legal duty to exercise ordinary care, skill and diligence in the performance of professional services.

Prosecutor at Center of U.S. Supreme Court Case Dogged by Ethics Issues

By R. Robin McDonald |

The former Georgia prosecutor at the center of Monday's U.S. Supreme Court argument in a case brought by a Georgia death row inmate has settled an unrelated civil fraud suit filed against him by a former client serving life without parole.

Latinas Face Long Odds in Law

By Jessica Stender |

Latinas’ share of the labor force has nearly doubled over the last 20 years. However, they continue to face a significant wage gap, earning less than Latinos, white women and white men.

Law School Deans Wrestle With Two-Year Drop in Bar Pass Rates

By Meredith Hobbs |

Georgia law school deans said they are trying to figure out why pass rates for the Georgia bar exam dropped for the second year in a row, by conducting detailed analyses of July exam score data released by the Georgia Office of Bar Examiners last week.

Kristen McGuffey

Corrected: Leaders Urge Women to Be 'Flexible and Organic' to Succeed

By Mary Welch |

Leading lawyers repeated the words "flexible" and "organic" in describing how women can balance the business of a law firm—with strict billable hour requirements and serving clients—and their personal lives.

Fleeing Defendant Who Missed His Own Acquittal Has Resurfaced

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The man who fled the courtroom and missed his own acquittal has come out of hiding—and has begun doing media appearances with his lawyer.

L to R: Jim Steinberg and Andrew Head

Managing Provider Performance of Termination Assistance Services

By Jim Steinberg and Andrew Head |

In a prior article involving termination rights, we touched on the fact that buyers should include contractual provisions regarding how to transition outsourced services away from a supplier upon termination.

Mediating Catastrophic Construction Claims

Statistics tell us that nearly 99 percent of all filed lawsuits are settled. The settlement rate of arbitrations is not quite as high, but we should take some solace in the fact that, in all likelihood, a well-managed mediation process can also resolve our catastrophic construction claim.

Practice Pointers for General Mediation

Mediation is the art of balancing interests. Although no template for guaranteed success exists for use in a mediation, certain experience-based suggestions can be offered as practice pointers.

7 Key Steps for Success in Arbitration

Many attorneys are comfortable in the courthouse, but those less experienced in arbitration may misread what the arbitrator is looking for and, as a result, may not set the right, persuasive tone in their approach.

Silence In An Arbitration Clause Is Not Golden

Many courts have held that arbitration clauses that are silent on class actions—but which incorporate the American Arbitration Association rules—will permit an arbitrator (rather than a court) to decide the critical threshold question of whether a class action can proceed in arbitration.

More Couples are Turning to Alternative Dispute Resolution to Prevent Invasive Financial Disclosures in Divorce

By Cynthia D. Wright |

Arbitration may be the best way to safeguard personal financial information for practical and emotional reasons. Testimony is not taken in a public setting, and documents collected need not be filed—and retained in perpetuity—in the Clerk's office.

4 Tips for Creating Cost-Saving Efficiency in Arbitration

By Erika C. Birg |

Arbitration can be cost-effective and efficient, if the parties and counsel design it that way and are dedicated to it being so.

Third Circuit Hears Argument Over Civil Recovery in Abuse Case

The lawyer for a victim of sexual abuse and subject of a child pornography series who obtained criminal restitution from her abuser, who pleaded guilty, argued she is entitled to additional civil compensation under Masha's Law.

L to R: Amanda Mercier, Nels Peterson and Brian Rickman

New Court of Appeals Judges: Mercier, Peterson and Rickman

By Alyson Palmer |

Gov. Nathan Deal on Thursday afternoon announced his appointments for three new positions on the Georgia Court of Appeals: Appalachian Circuit Superior Court Judge Amanda Mercier; Nels Peterson, the Georgia university system's top lawyer; and Mountain Circuit District Attorney Brian Rickman.

Brandon Taylor

Mid-Trial Settlement Halts Med-Mal Case

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A medical malpractice case against a doctor over back pain treatment ended abruptly in Griffin this month after an unusual mid-trial settlement for a confidential amount.

L to R: Amanda Mercier, Nels Peterson and Brian Rickman

Gov. Nathan Deal Names New Appeals Court Judges

By Alyson Palmer |

Gov. Nathan Deal on Thursday afternoon announced his appointments for three new positions on the Georgia Court of Appeals: Appalachian Circuit Superior Court Judge Amanda Mercier; Nels Peterson, the Georgia university system's top lawyer; and Mountain Circuit District Attorney Brian Rickman.

Cole Ramey, with Dallas-based Crouch & Ramey, will be merging with Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton.

Crouch & Ramey to Merge With Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton

Crouch & Ramey of Dallas will merge with Atlanta-based Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton on Nov. 2, giving 620-lawyer Kilpatrick Townsend an office in Texas, where it has clients, and providing Crouch & Ramey with opportunity to expand its practice via the larger firm.

Southern Company Atlanta Headquarters

Nuclear Plant Lawsuits Settled as Contractor Exits Project

Georgia Power Co. and other parties are settling lawsuits over the construction of a new nuclear power plant, removing some uncertainty surrounding the project.

Supreme court building in Washington DC, USA.

Atlanta Lawyers to Face Off Before U.S. Supreme Court

By R. Robin McDonald |

Two Atlanta attorneys will face each other Monday in a U.S. Supreme Court oral argument over the race of jurors in a death penalty case.

Georgia Man Gets 21 Months for Stealing Sea Turtle Eggs

A coastal Georgia man caught stealing 84 sea turtle eggs while he was on probation for an earlier conviction of the same crime was sentenced Wednesday to return to federal prison — for roughly one week for each egg he took.

Plaintiffs Suing EMCs Blast Retired U.S. Judge for 'Cut-and-Pasted' Special Master Report

By Alyson Palmer |

Lawyers for the plaintiffs in a high-stakes lawsuit against some of Georgia's power cooperatives have asked that a retired federal judge be removed as special master because he lifted large chunks of the defendants' legal writings in recommending the plaintiffs' case be dismissed.

Feds Seek to Pause Civil Lawsuit in Georgia Gym Mat Death

By Russ Bynum |

Federal prosecutors who have spent nearly two years investigating the death of a Georgia teenager who was found at school inside a rolled-up gym mat want a judge to order a six-month halt to evidence gathering in a civil lawsuit by the boy's parents.

Kate Cook

Lawyers: $2M Paid for Family Whose Minivan Was Hit by Truck

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A family that was injured when a roofing company's truck crossed a center line and hit their minivan head-on in the North Georgia mountain town of Ellijay has received a $2 million settlement, according to their attorneys.

Tyrone Brooks

Coke Counsel, Georgia-Pacific Exec Weigh In on Ex-Legislator's Sentencing

By R. Robin McDonald |

Executives at two of Atlanta's largest corporations that donated funds for charitable causes promoted by former state legislator Tyrone Brooks have written letters to a federal judge saying that Brooks violated their trust when he misappropriated hundreds of thousands of dollars for his personal use.

DeKalb Detention Officer Charged With Abusing Inmates

By R. Robin McDonald |

A DeKalb County sheriff's lieutenant has been indicted on federal charges that he goaded a county jailer into using excessive force against an inmate, the U.S. attorney in Atlanta announced Monday.

Back Row L-R Laura Little, Jeremy Burnette, Amanda Hiffa and Amy McCullough. Seated L-R Sidney Welch and Lynn Scott.

Polsinelli Picks Up Health Care Team of 7 From Kilpatrick Townsend

By Meredith Hobbs |

Polsinelli has landed a seven-lawyer health care team from Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton, led by Sidney Welch and Lynn Scott.

E. Adam Webb

Small Merchants Claim Credit Card Processors Add 'Junk Fees'

By Greg Land |

Two Tennessee-based restaurant businesses have filed a potential class action against a major credit card payment processor and an affiliated marketer, claiming that the companies conspired to tack hidden charges and "junk fees" onto the bills merchants pay for allowing customers to use credit cards.

Legal Issues on Tap for Wednesday's Emerging Leaders Conference

By Greg Land |

Speakers including members of the Fulton County judiciary and sheriff's department, state and county lawmakers and representatives from the Atlanta Police Department will be featured at Wednesday's Emerging Leaders "Teens on a Leadership Track" conference at the Loudermilk Conference Center, 40 Courtland St. N.E.

What's Up With GC Internal Promotions? It's Down to Trust

It's almost an ironclad rule: Companies doing well promote from within the ranks, with a clear succession path. Others, not so much.

Too Damn High? Report Shows Rents Outpacing Law Firm Profits

Law firm profits may be rising, but rents are rising even faster, according to a new report by commercial real estate services company Jones Lang LaSalle.

The July Bar Exam Results Are Out

By Meredith Hobbs |

The Georgia Office of Bar Admissions has released the list of those who passed the July bar exam. Click here to see who they are.

The Law School at the University of Georgia in Athens.

Georgia Bar Pass Rates Fall Again

By Meredith Hobbs |

The percentage of Georgia law school graduates passing the Georgia bar examination in July dropped for the second consecutive year, with 77.8 percent of first-time takers passing.

Can Female Lawyers Ditch the Pantyhose?

I thought pantyhose were dead. I can barely remember the last time I donned a pair of flesh tone sheers. As I recall, Anna Wintour, the editrix of Vogue, wouldn't be caught dead in them—ever.

Scott M. Ratchick

'Ambiguous' Franchise Agreement Sinks Franchisor

By Scott M. Ratchick |

The Eleventh Circuit recently affirmed a judgment entered in favor of a group of franchisees who sued for breach of contract when the franchisor charged them royalties and fees that the parties negotiated specifically to exclude from their franchise agreements.

You Know a Lot, But They Know More: Established Lawyers Offer Advice for New Ones

Congratulations! You passed The Bar. It's a big deal. Celebrate it—but when you're done, you still have to make your way in the profession.

Nick Panayotopoulos

Atlanta Lawyer: Big Sky Client Pays Small Price to End Long Case

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

An Atlanta lawyer said his client is happy to pay a $1.45 million settlement he negotiated in a class action lawsuit over property damage in Montana.

Justice David Nahmias

Commission Explores Jurisdictional Shift Between Appeals Courts

By Alyson Palmer |

A commission appointed by Gov. Nathan Deal on Monday began its first formal discussions about the prospect of changing the division of labor between the state's appellate courts.

Supreme Court of Georgia Justice P. Harris Hines swears in Savannah attorney Patrick T. O’Connor as president-elect of the State Bar of Georgia on Saturday, Oct. 24, after the Board of Governors elected him to serve in the dual role as president-elect and treasurer for the remainder of the 2015-16 Bar year.

O'Connor Voted in as Bar President-Elect in Savannah

By Meredith Hobbs |

The State Bar of Georgia's board of governors voted in the bar's treasurer, Pat O'Connor, for a second role as president-elect at its fall meeting Oct. 24.

Apple Sued Over Wi-Fi Switch Feature

Plaintiffs lawyers say that the company didn't warn iPhone users that its new Wi-Fi Assist feature could lead to bigger bills.

Quinn Emanuel and Hagens Berman Sue VW on Behalf of S. Koreans

Two prominent law firms filed a federal class action in Los Angeles on Friday against Volkswagen A.G. on behalf of South Korean consumers, making it the first case of its kind against an automaker in the United States.

11th Circuit Court of Appeals

Federal Court Strikes Indefinite Detention for Mentally Disabled

A decision favoring a mentally disabled man's request to review conditions restricting him at a Gainesville group home opens the door for potentially thousands of people to live freer lives.

Spirit Airlines Sued Over In-Flight Engine Failure

By R. Robin McDonald |

Two years ago on a Spirit Airlines flight from Dallas to Atlanta, passengers were stunned by a loud explosion that rocked the aircraft.

EU Privacy Update: 5 Stories That Will Impact U.S. Organizations with European Ties

The year 2015 was an active year in the evolution of EU privacy law, and could set the stage for further issues down the line.

Best Of 2015: The Results Are In

The lawyers have voted. We reveal Georgia lawyers' picks for best e-discovery company, best court reporter service plus 36 other categories of favorites.

To the Defendant Who Fled Courtroom: The Jury Acquitted You

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A man facing up to 20 years in prison for identity fraud and theft was acquitted Thursday, but he wasn't there to hear the news.

LegalZoom Settles Suit Against North Carolina Bar

By Greg Land |

Under a settlement entered Oct. 22, online legal services provider LegalZoom will be allowed to offer its prepaid legal plans to North Carolina residents.

Georgia Legal Services Director Reflects on Big Year [In Service]

By Phyllis Holmen | Special to the Daily Report |

So many of our clients' stories start with struggle and result in triumph, through their own persistence and a lawyer's help at the right moment.

Dax E. Lopez

DeKalb Sheriff Urges Confirmation of Dax Lopez

By R. Robin McDonald |

DeKalb State Court Judge Dax Lopez has gained another supporter in his quest to become a federal court judge—the DeKalb County sheriff.

Tyrone Brooks

Federal Prosecutors Want Prison Time for Former Legislator

By R. Robin McDonald |

Prosecutors are asking a federal judge to sentence a former state legislator to a two-year prison term, according to court papers filed this week in U.S. District Court in Atlanta.

L-R Michael and Brooke Puglise

Fired UGA Cop Settles Suit for $325K

By Greg Land |

A former University of Georgia police officer who filed a whistleblower suit claiming he was fired for obeying a 2014 law barring criminal charges against anyone voluntarily seeking medical help for an alcohol or drug overdose has reached a $325,000 settlement with state.

Judge Wayne Purdom

Judges Tee Up Garnishment Proposal for State Supreme Court

By Alyson Palmer |

State court judges grappling with how to comply with a federal court order declaring certain garnishment procedures unconstitutional have brought a proposal to the Georgia Supreme Court—while acknowledging they are not of one mind as to whether the proposed fix will work.

Emmet Sullivan.

Federal Judge Slams 'Shocking' DOJ Deal with GM Over Safety Defect

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan in Washington on Wednesday criticized the U.S. Department of Justice’s recent agreement with General Motors Co. as "a shocking example of potentially culpable individuals not being criminally charged."

Sean Penn

Miami Attorneys Represent Lee Daniels in Beef With Sean Penn

Miami lawyers are defending Lee Daniels against a $10 million defamation lawsuit filed by Sean Penn.

Mawuli Mel Davis

Activists, Media Push for Police Monitoring After Ferguson

By Meredith Hobbs |

"We need you," lawyer and activist Mawuli Davis told a packed house of more than 100 lawyers and concerned citizens at a discussion on police practices a year after the events in Ferguson, Missouri.

Multidistrict Prosecution Leads to Human Trafficking Guilty Plea and 30 Years in Prison

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A sex trafficking prosecution by multiple police jurisdictions led to a guilty plea and a 30-year prison sentence in Marietta on Wednesday.

Judge Robert McBurney

Judge Tosses Parents' Suit Claiming Sperm Bank and Donor Misled Them

By Greg Land |

A Fulton County judge has tossed a lawsuit claiming that a local sperm bank and its donor misled two Canadian women into believing their child's father was a brilliant neuroscientist when he was, in fact, an ex-felon with no college degree.

The late Griffin Bell, U.S. Attorney General under President Jimmy Carter, founded King & Spalding’s Washington office in 1979.

How King & Spalding Built Its D.C. Office From One AG to a Team of 200

Long considered one of the elite Atlanta-based firms, King & Spalding's D.C. reputation has been understated because of its fewer number of lawyers and smaller congressional lobbying totals, especially compared to Washington-founded firms. But the firm has remained a major player in D.C.-focused areas.

Judge Robert McBurney

'Wrongful Birth' Designation Dooms Fraud Suit Against Sperm Bank, Donor

By Greg Land |

In dismissing a suit accusing a sperm bank and a donor of lying that the donor was highly educated with clean legal and medical records, Fulton County Superior Court Judge Robert McBurney ruled that the parent-plaintiffs—two Canadian women, one of whom bore the resulting child seven years ago—are barred by Georgia law from suing for "wrongful birth," even though they argued that their suit was no such thing.

Mary E. Staley

Cobb Mental Health Court to Hold First Graduation

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

An accountability court for nonviolent criminal defendants with mental health diagnoses that started 2½ years ago will hold its first graduation ceremony Thursday.

L to R: Mike Terry and Nathan Gaffney

In Fight Between Judges' Council and JQC, Both Sides Get Deep Discounts

By R. Robin McDonald |

The state Council of State Court Judges is paying $5,000 to each of two Atlanta law firms challenging the authority of the state judicial watchdog agency, which has retained a former chief justice of the state Supreme Court to advocate its position free of charge.

State Bar of Georgia Sues 'Legal for Less' Operator

By Greg Land |

The State Bar of Georgia has sued a local man who offers discount legal services through online ads, claiming that his business, "Legal for Less," amounts to the unlicensed practice of law.

Victor Reynolds

Domestic Violence Prevention Advocates Honor Prosecutor

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

An advocacy group for the prevention of domestic violence has chosen a prosecutor as the first recipient of an award meant to highlight male role models working to build a peaceful community.

Robert D. Boyd

When an Equity Partner Divorces, Transparency Is Key to Protecting Firm, Clients

By Robert D. Boyd |

Going through a divorce can be a tumultuous event in the lives of everyone involved. When one of the parties is a partner in a law firm, those challenges are sometimes elevated.

$20 Million Agreement Approved on Beck's Beer Labeling

U.S. Magistrate Judge John O'Sullivan approves the final settlement with Anheuser-Busch in a class action alleging the packaging misled U.S. consumers about where the beer is brewed.

Med-Mal Insurer Says Doctors Win in 9 Out of 10 Trials

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

For every jury that decides to give a patient money in a medical malpractice trial, nine juries go the other way, according to records kept by the largest provider of insurance for doctors and hospitals in the Southeast.

L to R: Sabrina Graham and Brian Kammer

Full 11th Circuit Hears Capital Case in Which State, Inmate Agree

By Alyson Palmer |

A rare sitting of the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit on Tuesday presented an even rarer event: a death row inmate and the Georgia attorney general's office agreeing on something.

Gary Toman

Gary Toman Hops to Weinberg Wheeler

By Meredith Hobbs |

Gary Toman has joined litigation firm Weinberg Wheeler Hudgins Gunn & Dial as a partner of counsel after two decades in practice with Mike Nations at Nations & Toman.

The Euro Court of Justice Safe Harbor Ruling Should Spur Careful Planning

The ECJ decision, which cannot be appealed, has already injected additional uncertainty and disruption into E.U./U.S. business relationships on both sides of the Atlantic.

Experience Tops Youth in Daily Report Poll on Court of Appeals Openings

By Alyson Palmer |

Gov. Nathan Deal may like youth in his judicial appointments. But other lawyers, it seems, are swayed by seniority and experience.

General Motors Headquarters in Detorit, MI.

GM Settlement Money Going to Auto Safety Research

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Some of the more than $6 million General Motors paid a Cobb County couple to settle the lawsuit that identified a deadly ignition switch defect will be spent for safety research for cars.

From left: AVLF’s Jamie Perez with Safe Families Office Firm award recipients Laura Bunten, Mareasa Rooks and Kacy Romig of Jones Day, and AVLF executive director Michael Lucas.

Celebrating Service Honors Legal Volunteers [SLIDESHOW]

By Meredith Hobbs |

"There is a tradition of volunteerism that runs like a thread across this town ... and it starts with the professional community," Joe Bankoff said in the keynote speech for the Atlanta Bar Association's annual Celebrating Service luncheon on Friday at the Piedmont Driving Club.

David Nahmias

High Court: Treatment Plan Needed to Force-Medicate Murder Defendant

By Greg Land |

A unanimous Georgia Supreme Court has overruled a judge who ordered that the man who killed four people during a rampage at a Penske Truck Rental facility in 2010 could be involuntarily treated with antipsychotic medication so that he could be deemed competent to stand trial.

Dax E. Lopez

Republican Lawyers Urge U.S. Senators to Back Lopez Nomination

By R. Robin McDonald |

Republican lawyers who have served in high positions in Georgia government and the state GOP have asked Georgia's U.S. senators to support the confirmation of a DeKalb County State Court judge to the federal bench in Atlanta.

The Chicago Cubs' Kyle Schwarber at bat against the St. Louis Cardinals on October 13, 2015 at Wrigley Field.

Making the Playoffs: Baseball and Big Law

The Cubs may offer lessons that go beyond baseball.

Georgia Supreme Court building

Supreme Court Acts in Three Discipline Cases

On Monday, the Supreme Court of Georgia issued the following discipline decisions

Chatham County, courthouse in Savannah, GA.

2 Ex-Deputies Acquitted of Manslaughter in Stun Gun Death

By Russ Bynum |

Two former sheriff's deputies were acquitted Friday of involuntary manslaughter but convicted of lesser charges in the stun gun-related death of a 21-year-old detainee at a county jail in southeast Georgia.

Judith Resnick

Professors Decry Tort Reform and Mandatory Arbitration at Event on Civil Justice 'War'

By Greg Land |

Speakers at a symposium targeted tort reform and contracts requiring arbitration as evidence that "war" was being waged against the United States civil justice system.

Attorneys for Walter Scott's family, L. Chris Stewart, center, and Justin T. Bamberg, right, answers questions during a news conference after a bail hearing for former North Charleston police officer Michael Slager, Thursday, Sept. 10, 2015, in Charleston, S.C. Slager is being held for the shooting of Walter Scott after a traffic stop. A judge reached no decision Thursday on whether to grant bail for Slager, a white former police officer charged with killing an unarmed black man following a traffic stop in coastal South Carolina.

Atlanta Lawyer Represented South Carolina Family in $6.5M Police Shooting Settlement

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The Atlanta lawyer who negotiated a $6.5 million settlement over a police officer caught on video shooting an unarmed man in the back told the Daily Report he started talking with the other side "from day one."

L to R:  Mary Gill and Louise Wells

Can Part-Time Work Succeed in Big Law?

By Mary Welch |

The nuances of how to effectively execute reduced hours or other flexible work alternatives are as numerous as law firms. But it all comes down to how to execute a program that allows attorneys to reduce their workload, possibly stay on the partner track and still generate sufficient revenue for the firm—and, of course, serve clients.

Adam Gaslowitz of Gaslowitz Frankel.

The Man Who Came to 'Women in Law'

By Mary Welch |

Some of the 100 or so attendees wondered why a man would go to a "Women in Law" seminar about climbing the professional ladder. For his part, attorney Adam Gaslowitz, co-founder of Gaslowitz Frankel, wondered why he was the only man.