Recent News

Left to right: Rep. B.J. Pak and Charles Peeler

Trump Picks U.S. Attorney Nominees for Atlanta, Macon

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

President Donald Trump announced his choices late Friday for two new United States attorneys in Georgia—Byung J. "BJay" Pak as U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia and Charles Peeler for the same job in the Middle District of Georgia.

Fronto King Art

After Blunt Questioning, Jury Smokes Tobacco-Leaf Defendant in Trademark Case

By Greg Land |

A federal jury awarded $271,400 in the wake of a two-day trial in Georgia.

Cobb County Superior Court Judge Steve Schuster

Georgia Judges Set to Eye Changing Rule Over Use of Electronic Devices in Courtrooms

By R. Robin McDonald |

Georgia's Superior Court judges are set to meet Monday to consider a major overhaul of a court rule in place for decades governing the use of cameras and electronic recording devices in courtrooms across the state.

Doral City Hall.

11th Circuit Remands Political Firing Case for Trial

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A Florida police officer who alleges he lost his job because he supported the mayor's political rival is entitled to sue over violation of his First Amendment rights, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit has ruled, reversing the lower court's decision.

Jodi Taylor, Baker Donelson, Atlanta.

Law Firm Award Recognizes Messy Truth: There's More to Life Than Work

By Meredith Hobbs |

It seems like a sad commentary on modern life that a business would need to point out that life matters outside the office. In Big Law, it's a sign of progress.

Health Care Law Changes Will Pose Tough Questions

If the fallout from Congress' not-yet-determined decision on health care results in cuts to Medicaid, how will the state decide who can't receive that assistance?

Arms and Toes and Breasts, Oh My!

By Vivia Chen, The Careerist |

Want a break from all the messy news about Donald Trump Jr. and Russiagate? Let's cut to some other topics that are roiling America.

Christopher Wray testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing for FBI director.

102 Former U.S. Attorneys Urge Wray's Confirmation

By R. Robin McDonald |

More than 100 former U.S. atttorneys, including appointees of both Republican and Democratic presidents, have thrown their support behind Christopher Wray, the King & Spalding partner whom President Donald Trump has nominated to serve as the nation's new FBI director. Sally Yates, whom Trump fired as acting U.S. attorney general last January when she refused to defend his travel ban, is one of them.

Kraft Macaroni & Cheese

Lawsuits Over Mac and Cheese Could Be Hard for Courts to Swallow

By Charles Toutant |

A report finding hazardous chemicals in boxed macaroni and cheese may have alarmed fans of the inexpensive and convenient meal, but food safety lawyers say any litigation over the issue faces formidable challenges.

Christopher Wray testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee during his confirmation hearing to be the next Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, on July 12, 2017.

FBI Nominee to Senate: Trump FCPA Probe Not Off-Limits

By Katelyn Polantz |

On Monday, the Senate Judiciary Committee received answers from Christopher Wray to questions that directly addressed Wray's perception of his firm King & Spalding and the legal enforcement he may do if confirmed as FBI director.

Reality Winner.

Reality Winner's Lawyers Brand Government Protective Order as 'Scary'

By R. Robin McDonald |

Lawyers for former NSA contractor and accused leaker Reality Winner have branded as "scary" what they say are the federal government's efforts to unfairly hobble them by casting a broad, ill-defined blanket of secrecy over information, including published news accounts, they may need for Winner's defense.

Simon Bloom of Bloom Sugarman.

'Good, Bad or Ugly:' 11th Circuit OKs International Arbitrator's Venue Ruling

By Greg Land |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit upheld an international arbitration award levying nearly $900,000 against an Israeli company accused of defaming its one-time Georgia business partner.

Joe Whitley of Baker Donelson.

Ex-U.S. Attorney, Homeland Security Counsel Joins Defense Team in Winner Leak Case

By R. Robin McDonald |

The former general counsel of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on Thursday joined the defense team of accused leaker Reality Winner.

Jeffrey Melcher, Atlanta.

Wilson Elser Finds a Home in Buckhead for New Atlanta Office

By Meredith Hobbs |

The 800-lawyer full-service litigation defense firm that planted a flag in Atlanta in March has subleased 6,200 square feet of Class A Buckhead space for the next three years.

One Giant Leap: How Lawyer Won Apollo 11 Moondust Case

By Jonathan Ringel |

The legal backstory to an auction of a cloth bag containing lunar dust from the Apollo 11 mission, which fetched $1.8 million on Thursday, "is a pretty cool case," said the lawyer who won it.

Belinda Edwards.

Campaign Manager Claims Judge Belinda Edwards Skipped on $5K Bonus

By Greg Land |

Dan Young claims the judge retained him as campaign manager in early 2016 heading into her summer election.

Cashmere Bouquet talcum powder.

Phila. Case Over Asbestos-Infused Talc Could Set Pattern for Series of Claims

By Max Mitchell |

The high-profile litigation in Missouri over talcum powder might be beginning to cool down, thanks to a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, but a talc-related litigation in Pennsylvania is beginning to heat up, and may set a pattern for a growing area for tort claims.

hands on keyboard

Sentenced Russian Hacker a 'Key Resource' For Cyber Underworld

By R. Robin McDonald |

Mark Vartanyan, also known as "Kolypto," was sentenced to five years in prison for computer fraud.

Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr.

AG Alleges Company Sells Bogus Balloon Rides and Skydives

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Marvelay of Kennesaw, operating under the names "Spot Reservation" and "Rushcube," stands accused of selling services it doesn't actually provide, then either booking them with third parties, or failing to show up at all—leaving birthday parties, anniversary celebrations and marriage proposals without their main event.

Avi Stadler

One Company's Pitch to Spur Pro Bono: Transcript Discounts

By Meredith Hobbs |

Esquire Deposition Solutions' general counsel, Avi Stadler, says the company is offering a 50 percent discount on originals and first copies of depositions in pro bono matters to assist lawyers who've taken on more complex pro bono cases. "We want to help people have equal access to justice," he said.

Joe Wargo, Wargo French, Atlanta.

Malpractice, Fraud Claims Against Alston & Bird Can Proceed

By R. Robin McDonald |

A client lawsuit accusing Alston & Bird of fraud, unjust enrichment, legal malpractice and other claims will go forward after a Fulton County judge rejected arguments by Alston's counsel to throw out the bulk of the claims.

Scott Rafshoon, Hunton & Williams, Atlanta.

Hunton Lands Dentons Partner for P3, Corporate Practices

By Meredith Hobbs |

G. Scott Rafshoon has left Dentons to become a partner at Hunton & Williams, citing its public-private partnership practice as the draw.

Georgia Legal Community Mourns Loss of Judge William O'Kelley

Brian D. "Buck" Rogers, as president of the State Bar of Georgia, writes in remembrance of Senior U.S. District Judge William C. O'Kelley of Murrayville on his recent passing.

Michael L. Brown

Alston & Bird Partner Brown's Path to the Georgia Federal Court Bench

By R. Robin McDonald |

It's been a good month for Alston & Bird partner Michael L. Brown. The Trump White House nominated Brown July 13 to fill a long-vacant post on the federal court bench in the Northern District of Georgia.

Hand holding mobile phone with chatbot application.

The DoNotPay Dilemma: Can Chatbots Provide Access to Justice Without a Lawyer?

By Gabrielle Orum Hernández |

The ticket-challenging chatbot has expanded into 1,000 areas of law, across all 50 states, but questions loom around providing legal services without attorneys.

Sarah Jones

CSX Vows to Appeal Verdict Over Death on Allman Movie Set

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A Savannah jury returned a verdict of $11.2 million late Monday after a six-day trial stemming from a fatal train accident on the set of "Midnight Rider"—of which CSX Railroad is required to pay $3.9 million, according to the jury's apportionment, though it has promised to appeal.

The Cheetah, Atlanta.

Stripper's Legal Settlement Worth Thousands of Lap Dances

By R. Robin McDonald |

A former exotic dancer at The Cheetah, Atlanta's iconic high-dollar strip club, settled two federal lawsuits with management for $110,000 and $18,050 in legal fees.

Judge Charles R. Wilson, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

ICE Wrongly Deported Contra Rebel After 31 Years, 11th Circuit Says

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Court concludes man did not dishonestly answer "no" to the question of whether he had been in prison because being taken into a trailer in the middle of the jungle did not constitute being confined to a prison.

Chief Justice P. Harris Hines, Georgia Supreme Court

Georgia Chief Justice Misses Work—Because of Jury Duty

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Instead of driving downtown to his chambers at the high court, the justice spent the day closer to home at the Cobb County Courthouse in Marietta. It's the new building next door to the one where he served as a Cobb County Superior Court judge before moving up to the Supreme Court.

Judge William Ray.

Federal Bench Nominee William Ray Hailed for Fairness, 'Farm-Boy Work Ethic'

By Greg Land |

While any federal judge nominee may expect a rough time in today's hyperpartisan atmosphere, Georgia Court of Appeals Judge William "Billy" Ray II—tapped last week by President Donald Trump for the U.S. District Court for Georgia's Northern District—will come to the Senate with a reputation for working across the aisle.

Michael Frankson, Huff Powell Bailey, Atlanta.

Huff Powell Lawyers Pull Defense Win for Doctors in Fatal Med-Mal Case

By Greg Land |

A Fulton County jury found no liability for two doctors who were accused of failing to follow up on masses detected in a man's kidney several years before he ultimately developed a fatal renal cancer.

Judge Tillman

Macon Federal Court Nominee is Third-Generation Judge, Army Vet

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

President Donald Trump's pick for an opening on the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia is a bow-tie wearing, college football-officiating, turkey-hunting champion, as well as an Army veteran and third-generation judge.

U.S. Justice Department, Washington, D.C.

Hospice Company to Pay $4.4M in Pair of Whistleblower Settlements Over Alleged Fraud

By Kristen Rasmussen |

The settlements are the latest example of the DOJ going after fraud in hospice facilities and nursing homes.

Randy Evans, left, and Shari Klevens, right.

Legal Malpractice Claims Level Off as Conflicts and Cyber Claims Rise

By J. Randolph Evans and Shari L. Klevens, Dentons US |

In light of these trends, law firms may wish to consider taking steps such as shoring up conflicts protocols, addressing technology security protocols and investigating cyber liability insurance to help avoid becoming a malpractice statistic.

L-R Elizabeth Rose and Annie Caiola. Caiola & Rose LLC, Decatur Ga.

Firm for Franchisors Launches in Decatur—and Other 'On the Move' News

By Meredith Hobbs |

Annie Caiola, partnering with bankruptcy lawyer Elizabeth Rose, has left Decatur firm Slotkin & Caiola to start a new boutique a few blocks away, Caiola & Rose, with a focus on serving franchisors.

Randy Evans, Dentons, Atlanta

Evans Would Join Line of Atlanta Lawyers in Ambassadorships

By Jonathan Ringel |

A report Friday that Dentons partner Randy Evans is likely to be President Donald Trump's pick to be ambassador to Luxembourg means the Atlanta Big Law community could get another alumnus in the ambassador ranks.

FBI headquarters, Washington D.C.

FBI Agent Let Lover Lure Would-Be Sexual Predators

By R. Robin McDonald |

Former FBI agent Kenneth W. Hillman III and a female acquaintance did a good job luring would-be sexual predators. Only problem: The woman was reportedly his lover, with no authority to access sensitive law enforcement files

Judge Explains How Plea Bargains Resemble Tattoos

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Here's a riddle, asked and answered by a federal appeals judge. What do plea bargains and tattoos have in common?

L-R: John Amabile, Micheal Binns and Todd Sprinkle, attorneys with Parker Poe

Sovereign Immunity Is Absolute, and Textualism May Be Too at Georgia High Court

By John C. Amabile, A. Todd Sprinkle and Micheal L. Binns, Parker Poe Adams & Bernstein |

Lawyers analyze the Supreme Court's abortion decision and seek lessons for business.

Richard B. Russell Federal Building

Trump Nominates Three for Federal Judgeships in Georgia

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Three new federal judge picks for Georgia come with the package of nominees President Donald Trump announced Thursday.

Paul Compton

Bradley Arant's Paul Compton, Trump's Pick for HUD GC, Will Face Senate Test

By C. Ryan Barber |

Jerome Paul Compton, the Trump administration's pick for general counsel at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, pulled in nearly $1.2 million between January 2016 and late March of this year from his work in the Birmingham offices of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings, according to a financial disclosure form. Compton's confirmation hearing is set for July 18.

Kevin Newsom

Judiciary Committee Advances Newsom Nomination to Full Senate

By R. Robin McDonald |

Members of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee voted 18-2 Thursday to send Kevin Newsom's nomination to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit to the full Senate for confirmation.

Gillette razors

Are Law Firms Too Sophisticated for Their Own Good?

By Hugh A. Simons |

The dangerous path Big Law is headed down and what it has to do to change course.

Vicky Kimbrell

State Grant Bolsters Legal Aid for Domestic Violence Victims

By Meredith Hobbs |

A $2.4 million state grant that funds legal services for domestic violence victims can mean the difference between life and death for some legal aid clients.

How In-House Lawyers Took 'Falsettos' From Stage to Silver Screen

By STEPHANIE FORSHEE |

During this year’s annual Tony awards recognizing Broadway theater, Whoopi Goldberg took to the stage to announce that the musical revival of “Falsettos” would be hitting movie theatersnationwide starting July 12.

Judge Charles R. Wilson, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

11th Circuit Reversal Says Prosecutors Failed to Meet Burden of Proof

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Miami prosecutors got a smack down with a federal appeals court reversal saying they didn't do their job. Judge Charles Wilson of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit ruled that the state had not met its burden of proof and tossed a drug trafficking conviction, freeing a man from a 12-year prison sentence.

Kevin Newsom

Questions for Birmingham Attorney in Senate Hearing for 11th Circuit Post

By R. Robin McDonald |

Just 10 days after President Donald Trump was inaugurated, Sen. Richard Shelby's chief of staff placed a call to Kevin Newsom, Alabama's former solicitor general, to arrange a visit. The Alabama senator, she said, wanted to discuss a vacancy on the Eleventh Circuit bench.

This 150-Lawyer Atlanta Firm Is Now Opening … Everywhere

By Roy Strom |

Taylor English Duma has grown to 150 lawyers in Atlanta in 12 years. Now it's recruiting lawyers all over the country to work remotely with its "hub" of lawyers in the Peach State.

An Open Letter From 25 General Counsel

Announcing a real-time exercise to test industry assumptions and understand how to improve the legal market and relationships between law firms and clients.

'Experiment' to Give In-House Counsel New Trove of Data About Outside Firm Relationships

By Jennifer Williams-Alvarez |

In-house counsel are welcoming a new initiative that measures the interactions between legal departments and their outside attorneys.

Atlanta Attorney Robert Thompson Jr. of the Thompson Law Group.

Indictment Caps Years of Complaints Against Attorney

By R. Robin McDonald |

Two men who filed complaints with the State Bar of Georgia against disbarred Buckhead lawyer Robert T. Thompson Jr. say Thompson's indictment on Tuesday by a Fulton County grand jury caps years of civil and criminal complaints by an unofficial network of his former clients to recover losses stemming from the lawyer's failure to do his job.

L-R Mike McGonigle and Julie Oinonen, Atlanta.

DeKalb Schools Reach $160K Settlement With 150 Teachers Over Contract Fees

By Greg Land |

The DeKalb County School District has agreed to pay more than $160,000 to settle a lawsuit claiming the district illegally withheld $750 apiece from 150 teachers' final paychecks when they resigned at the end of the 2013 school year.

Christopher Wray, King & Spalding.

Megamillions Paycheck Puts Chris Wray, King & Spalding in the Spotlight

By Meredith Hobbs and Katelyn Polantz |

With an annual salary of roughly $6.3 million per year, Christopher Wray is a rarity among Big Law equity partners, particularly for partners at Atlanta-based firms.

Leah Ward Sears.

Justice Sears on Her New Biography: 'God Didn't Put You Here to Fail'

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

In a chat about her new biography during a live Georgia Public Broadcasting program Tuesday, former Georgia Supreme Court Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears recalled her second thoughts about her place in history.

Sarah Jones

Jury Sees Footage of Film Crew Fleeing Train

By Russ Bynum |

The civil trial of a railroad company accused of negligence in the 2014 death of a movie worker opened Tuesday with jurors watching video of the film crew fleeing a freight train moments before the fatal crash on a Georgia railroad bridge.

Boies Persuades Ninth Circuit to Revive Suit Over Nazi-Looted Art

By ROSS TODD |

SAN FRANCISCO — In the first art law case of his 50-plus year legal career, David Boies has helped convince an appellate court to revive a long-running lawsuit over a Nazi-looted painting by French impressionist Camille Pissarro.

Law School Argues Student’s Actions Were ‘Obnoxious’ but Not Harassing

By Karen SLoan |

Appalachian School of Law has fired back at a former visiting professor suing the school, arguing in a bid to dismiss that a student who the professor claims was sexually harassing her was simply “obnoxious.”

David Boies.

Boies Persuades Ninth Circuit to Revive Suit Over Nazi-Looted Art

By Ross Todd |

In the first art law case of his 50-plus year legal career, David Boies has helped convince an appellate court to revive a long-running lawsuit over a Nazi-looted painting by French impressionist Camille Pissarro

Appalachian School of Law, Grundy Virginia

Law School Argues Students Actions Were Obnoxious but Not Harassing

By KAREN SLOAN |

Appalachian School of Law has fired back at a former visiting professor suing the school, arguing in a bid to dismiss that a student who the professor claims was sexually harassing her was simply “obnoxious.”

Robert T. Thompson Jr.

Disbarred Buckhead Lawyer Indicted for Theft and Forgery

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A disbarred Buckhead lawyer was indicted Tuesday on 32 counts of theft and forgery and accused of misusing hundreds of thousands of dollars in client funds, Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard Jr. announced.

The Legal Profession’s ‘Last Mile’ Solution

Buyers and sellers of legal service must have prolonged and sustained discussions with each other on how to align their long-term business interests.

Judge John Ellington, Georgia Court of Appeals

Elllington Reports Raising $370K for 2018 Supreme Court Campaign

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Three weeks after announcing plans to run for Georgia Supreme Court in 2018, Court of Appeals Judge John Ellington has reported raising more than $370,000 for his campaign.

Reality Winner.

Prosecutors in Reality Winner Case Push for News Reports to Be 'Classified'

By R. Robin McDonald |

U.S. Justice Department lawyers prosecuting former NSA contractor Reality Winner over alleged leaks of classified information regarding Russia's alleged interference in the 2016 presidential election are arguing her defense team should not be allowed to discuss any classified information, even if it was in news reports.

Scott Rothstein, Rothstein Rosenfeldt Adler, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Insurers for Bank Used by Ponzi Schemer Rothstein Aren't Liable for Coverage, Court Says

By Greg Land |

The decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit came more than seven years after high-flying Florida lawyer Scott Rothstein pleaded guilty to federal charges stemming from a scheme that defrauded hundreds of investors.

Events Calendar for Georgia's Law Community

A roundup of events for CLEs, networking and conferences.

A Calendar of Georgia Law Community Events

A roundup of events for CLE training, networking and mentorship.

Christopher Wray, of King & Spalding.

Trump's FBI Pick Christopher Wray Earned $9.2M Partnership Share at King & Spalding

By Katelyn Polantz and Mike Scarcella |

Christopher Wray, the King & Spalding white-collar partner who was nominated to replace fired FBI director James Comey, reported earning $9.2 million in his partnership share from 2016 and so far this year, according to financial documents made available Monday. Wray, a King & Spalding partner for nearly 12 years in the firm's Washington and Atlanta offices, also revealed numerous big-name clients in the required disclosure, released by the U.S. Office of Government Ethics. Wray is set to appear Wednesday for his confirmation hearing.

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

Case of 'Litigating about Litigating' Dismissed

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit has tossed a former pizza store manager's discrimination lawsuit, instead ordering up arbitration.

Cyber Security.

Cybersecurity Vendor Management Has Role in Risk Reduction

By Mitzi Hill, Taylor English Duma |

Here are some basics to consider when evaluating your vendors and their commitments to your cybersecurity, as well as some specific measures to employ with those suppliers whose work might present a risk to your company data.

The towers of the Detroit Renaissance Center, the world headquarters of the General Motors Corporation in Detroit, Michigan.

Bellwether Case Set to Begin in GM Ignition MDL

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The litigation tsunami continues as another bellwether ignition defect case against General Motors heads to trial Monday in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York before Judge Jesse Furman.

University Rips Law Prof over Brazilian Wax Exam Question

By KAREN SLOAN |

A longtime professor at Howard University School of Law has been ordered to attend sensitivity training and submit future exam questions for administrative review after several students complained about graphic test question involving a Brazilian wax.

Judge John Ellington, Georgia Court of Appeals

University Off the Hook for Drowned Student

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The parents of an American student who died on a study abroad program cannot sue the Brookhaven university, the Georgia Court of Appeals has ruled.

J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building, Washington, D.C.

Your Company Has Been Hacked; Should You Call the Government?

By Justin S. Daniels and Jason R. Edgecombe, Baker Donelson |

In the rush to respond to a hack, the victim needs to assess whether the involvement of law enforcement is appropriate.

Cyber attack

Theft of Trade Secrets by Cyberattack: Mitigating the Damage

By William "Chip" Collins Jr., Burr & Forman |

To mitigate damage and try to preserve the protected status of trade secrets affected by a cyberattack, businesses must act fast.

Judge William C. O'Kelley, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia

Friends Remember Senior Judge William O'Kelley

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Senior U.S District Court Judge William O'Kelley of the Northern District of Georgia, who died Wednesday, was remembered by friends last week for his sharp legal mind, keen wit, strong mentoring, gregarious personality and good company on long trips.

Paul Monnin, Alston & Bird, Atlanta.

Alston & Bird Snags White-Collar Defense Partner From Paul Hastings

By Meredith Hobbs |

White-collar defense litigator Paul Monnin has joined Alston & Bird as a partner from Paul Hastings.

Martin Shkreli hears advice from attorney Benjamin Brafman during a 2016 hearing by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

From Martin Shkreli to Donald Trump, Surviving Clients Who Wont Listen

By CHRISTINE SIMMONS |

In the age of at-your-fingertips social media, some defense attorneys are struggling with a new challenge: controlling their own clients. Just ask Martin Shkreli’s lawyer.

Judge Christopher McFadden, Georgia Court of Appeals.

Sovereign Immunity Bars Suit by Inmate Burned Repairing Truck, Appeals Court Rules

By Greg Land |

With one of three judges "reluctantly" concurring, a Georgia Court of Appeals panel has reversed a trial court and ruled against an inmate who was badly burned while doing maintenance work on a garbage truck.

Judge Amy Totenberg, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia

Rejecting 'Set-Up' Claim, 11th Circuit Affirms $8M Award Against Nationwide

By Greg Land |

The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed a more than $8.2 million judgment against Nationwide Insurance in a contentious and closely-watched traffic fatality case.

Judge Adalberto Jose Jordan, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

Do You Hear What I Hear? 11th Circuit Posts Argument Audio

By Jonathan Ringel |

The federal appeals court for the Southeast has started providing audio recordings of oral arguments on its website.

Fresh Off the Press First Casebook on Pot Law

By KAREN SLOAN |

Marijuana is on fire. Recreational pot is now legal in eight states plus the District of Columbia. Another 20 states allow cannabis for medical purposes.

Law Firm Merger Activity Abroad Highlights First Half Frenzy

By MEGHAN TRIBE |

Cross-border combinations continued to propel law firm merger activity through the second quarter of 2017 as U.S. firms continue to look outside the domestic marketplace for growth opportunities, according to reports by legal consultancies Altman Weil Inc. and Fairfax Associates.

Judge Charlie Bethel, Georgia Court of Appeals

Judges Split Over Sickened Wedding Guests' Lawsuit Against Caterer

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The question of whether a caterer can be sued over food poisoning suffered by wedding guests produced a 5-4 split and two strong dissents at the Georgia Court of Appeals.

Melissa Strickland (left) and David Marple.

Big Boutique Family Lawyers Go Solo—and Other 'On the Move' News

By Meredith Hobbs |

David Marple and Melissa Davis Strickland have each left established family law firms to start their own shops. Both lawyers—midway through their careers with four children apiece—said it was time to try going solo.

Donald Trump

Why Trump's Attacks on Media Wont Touch Off Libel Suits

By Todd Cunningham |

Given the recent sharp increase in the volume and venom of President Donald Trump’s shots at the media, is the timing right for journalists to consider suing him for issuing defamatory statements?

Thomas Reynolds, Atlanta.

Family of Man Killed In Deck Accident Seeks $25M After $1M Settlement

By Greg Land |

A $1 million settlement has been reached with the survivors of a disabled veteran who strangled to death when an apartment deck railing broke loose and trapped him in his wheelchair. But the parties are continuing to litigate, as the family and estate seeks $25 million from the apartment complex owner's excess coverage policy.

Randy Evans, left, and Shari Klevens, right.

Three Tips for Handling the Difficult Decision to Downsize

By Randy Evans and Shari L. Klevens, Dentons US |

When downsizing becomes necessary, it can be an extremely difficult and emotional process. However, a messy breakup benefits no one. Law firms can instead invest the time and resources to help ensure a smooth transition for the departing attorneys and staff.

Jon Eisenman’s profile on the

Jeopardy Finally Attaches for Persistent Appellate Lawyer

By LEIGH JONES |

Jon Eisenman is not a quitter. The appellate lawyer in Los Angeles tried five times to appear on “Jeopardy!” before he snagged a spot on the TV answer-and-question game show. So far, he’s won three games and is due to play his fourth on July 5.

U.S. Federal Trade Commission building.

New FTC Policy Would Shield Lawyers, Staff From Personal Liability

By C. Ryan Barber |

The Federal Trade Commission on Wednesday adopted an indemnity policy that will shield lawyers and other staff from any personal liability for enforcement actions that draw a lawsuit and expose them to a monetary judgment. The new policy comes as two FTC lawyers press for immunity, in court, over their roles in a data-breach case against the now-shuttered medical device company LabMD.

James Edward

Lawsuit Alleges 'Pattern of Sexual Abuse' by Pastor

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A woman has filed a lawsuit against her former pastor, alleging he sexually abused her for years starting when she was 15 and told her it was her duty in service to the church.

xxx neon

This Florida Adult Club Is Being Sued for Refusing to Hire a Male Bartender

By Mike Scarcella |

An adult entertainment club in the Florida panhandle is being sued by the EEOC for allegedly refusing to hire a male bartender. The club, Sammy's, subsequently hired at least two female bartenders at the club's Fort Walton Beach location, according to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The agency said in a statement that "employers must realize that no person, male or female, can be denied employment based on sex." A representative for Sammy's wasn't immediately reached for comment.

James Myers, Insley & Race, Atlanta.

Man Stabbed While Fighting Ex-Girlfriend Can't Sue Apartment Owners, Appeals Court Rules

By Greg Land |

The Georgia Court of Appeals has affirmed a DeKalb County judge's dismissal of a premises liability suit brought by a man stabbed repeatedly during a dustup with his ex-girlfriend.

Georgia Supreme Court and Court of Appeals Building

Supreme Court of Georgia Issues Discipline Decisions on 4 Lawyers

The justices on Friday reinstated one lawyer, rejected one lawyer's petition for voluntary discipline and suspended two lawyers with conditions for reinstatement.

L-R James Butler Jr. and Thomas Dupree Jr.

Chrysler Granted Cert on $40M Judgment for Exploding Jeep Gas Tank

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The Georgia Supreme Court has decided to take a look at Chrysler's appeal of a $40 million judgment, reduced from a $150 million verdict for the family of a 4-year-old boy killed when a Jeep gas tank exploded. The justices split over what questions to consider but granted the writ of certiorari Friday on two issues with which they are "particularly concerned."

Judge Gail Tusan, Fulton County Superior Court.

Appeals Court Scraps $50K Fee Award to Special Prosecutor

By Greg Land |

The Georgia Court of Appeals has vacated and remanded a judge's order awarding nearly $50,000 in attorney fees and expenses to a lawyer sued over his work as a special prosecutor cracking down on illegal gambling on coin-operated machines.

Daily Report Attorney of the Year Stephen Bright.

Daily Report Presents Annual Professional Excellence Awards

The Daily Report handed out awards to 63 lawyers Thursday night in the following categories: Attorney of the Year, Lifetime Achievement, Distinguished Leaders, Litigation Departments of the Year, In-House Legal Department of the Year/GC Impact and On the Rise.

DLA Piper Slowly Recovers After Ransomware Attack

By Katelyn Polantz |

After three days without phones and email following a cyberattack across Europe, DLA Piper's U.S. operation is back up and running. 

Professional Excellence: Another Bumper Crop

Our special sections and events that recognize professional excellence in the law have evolved over the years. We started with one section, On the Rise, in 2002, and we have added events and other sections since then. We used to spread these out over the year, but this week we have combined them into one big event and this big web feature.

Lawyers Turn Out the Lights on Power Co-op Suits After Appellate Ruling

By R. Robin McDonald |

When attorneys sued Georgia's electric power cooperatives on behalf of millions of current and former power customer members, they claimed the cooperatives, known as electric membership corporations, for decades had withheld as much as $2 billion in profits that should have, by law, been distributed regularly to their members.

Judge William Pryor Jr., U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

11th Circuit Judges Split on Police Search by 'Deception'

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Judges on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit revealed a deep divide Wednesday over what constitutes a legal search.

Med Mal Noneconomic Damage Cap Advances, to Dismay of Some Lawyer Groups

By Amanda Bronstad |

The U.S. House of Representatives this week passed a tort reform bill that practitioners said would limit noneconomic damages to cases across the nation at $250,000 and possibly "eviscerate" certain cases against medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturers.

Hudson Grille, Midtown Atlanta.

Cranky Critics: Restaurant Suits Say Neighbors Hurl Eggs, Obscenities

By Greg Land |

The owners of three Midtown restaurants—Hudson Grille Midtown, Joe's on Juniper and Einstein's—have sued a neighborhood couple for what they claim is a campaign of harassment that threatens to put the eateries out of business.

Justice Michael Boggs.

Ga. High Court Sends $2.5M Bar Tab Dispute Back for Another Round

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The doctrine of sovereign immunity has produced a hangover for Clayton County and the city of College Park over how to split taxes on alcohol sales at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. This bar tab dispute is worth $2.5 million.

Steve Bright giving remarks after being named 2017 Daily Report Attorney of the Year at the Professional Excellence awards dinner at the J.W. Marriott Buckhead on Thursday.

Steve Bright Wins Daily Report's Attorney of the Year Award

By Meredith Hobbs |

Stephen Bright, "the brave heart" of Atlanta's Southern Center for Human Rights, won the Attorney of the Year Award at the Daily Report's annual Professional Excellence awards dinner for his 40-year fight for the lives of indigent clients facing the death penalty.

Legal Departments Can Take the Lead When Workplace Disaster Hits

By David Ruiz |

When violence strikes the workplace, legal departments will have a big role in dealing with what comes next.

McCracken

Dental Clinic Manager Tagged As 'Fall Guy' Wins Acquittal

By R. Robin McDonald |

With her supervisors' encouragement, the manager of the Dalton office of a children's dental clinic that catered to Medicaid recipients created an overheated incentive program to recruit new patients—without knowing it likely violated federal regulations.

Georgia State Capitol Building

Campaign for Governor: 2 Lawyers, 1 Name, New Stories

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Two lawyers who have launched campaigns for Georgia's 2018 gubernatorial election talk with the Daily Report about why they're running and what they bring to the race.

L-R: ACIAM Arbitrators Council managing director Magaly Cobian, Claes Zettermarck, Massimo Benedettelli, Ambassador Charles Adams, Carita Wallgren Lindholm and ACIAM executive director Shelby Grubbs.

Atlanta Arbitration Center Enlists International Pros To Raise Profile Overseas

By Meredith Hobbs |

The effort to make Atlanta a hot spot for international commercial arbitration gains some momentum as the Atlanta Center for International Arbitration and Mediation assembles an arbitrators' council with top European arbitrators to promote its reputation as an arbitral venue abroad.

screenshot of telepayusa.com

Phone Sex Workers Sue Over Low Wages, Long Hours

By AMANDA BRONSTAD |

Phone sex might be expensive and short-lived for consumers, but it doesn’t pay much for the workers on the other line.

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

Allstate Must Defend Wife Whose Hubby Shot Evening Caller

By Greg Land |

The 11th Circuit ruled the shooting, while intentional, constituted an accident under the wife's insurance policy because it was unforeseen to her.

Ransomware Attack on DLA Piper Puts Law Firms, Clients on Red Alert

By Roy Strom |

The implications of network-crippling malware may be just as damaging for a deadline-driven service industry that holds the fate of companies’ legal issues in its palm.

AARP headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Hiring, Not Firing, Is a New Focus in Age Discrimination Suits

By Erin Mulvaney |

Management tactics that weed out older workers have pushed federal regulators and anti-discrimination groups to train an eye on hiring rather than firing when it comes to protecting against age bias, an effort advocates acknowledge is a steeper hill with increasingly narrowed protections for aging workers.

Gov. Nathan Deal.

Governor Gives Graduation Keynote—in Prison

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A graduation ceremony of than 2,000 Georgia prisoners earning the diploma is a show of progress for the latest phase of Gov. Nathan Deal's criminal justice reform movement. And the governor gave the keynote speech.

Stacey Evans. Atlanta.

Stacey Evans 2018: Restoring 'HOPE' to Georgia

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The litigation attorney doesn't shy away from the topic of her kind of diversity—of economic circumstances and breaking out of family educational limits.

Stacey Abrams

Stacey Abrams 2018: Moving Georgia Beyond Survival

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Stacey Abrams, 43, said she's been thinking about running for governor of Georgia since around 2011, but her resume reads like she's been preparing for it her whole life.

Georgia Supreme Court building

Lawyer Backs 'Lampoon' of Georgia High Court: Letter

By Bruce Fein |

A letter writer offers reinforcement for critic of Supreme Court's originalism.

Ransomware Attack

Your Law Firm Got Hacked. What Do You Do Now

By RHYS DIPSHAN |

A four-step guide to how law firms can limit their exposure to further cyber theft and legal liabilities after an attack. For legal professionals, the latest widespread ransomware attack hits close to home. DLA Piper offices across Europe and the United States were crippled by ransomware in what was the first publicly acknowledged law firm victim of the attack. It is too early to tell if DLA Piper is the only firm to be affected, but its breach speaks to a broader vulnerability law firms across the globe face against increasingly sophisticated cyber threats.

Stephanie Parker, Jones Day

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

One trial stands out among many for Stephanie Parker of Jones Day in Atlanta. It lasted just under two weeks. The verdict was $2.54 billion. Yes, with a B.

Daily Report Law Department of the Year  (General Litigation, Large Firm) King &  Spalding. Front Row L-R Merrit McAlister, Phyllis Sumner and Tish McDonald. Back Row L-R Andy Bayman, Stephen Devereaux, Stewart Haskins, Michael Smith, Warren Pope, Zach McEntyre, Tony Tatum, David Balser and Shelby Guilbert.

King & Spalding

King & Spalding's 2016 litigation successes included products liability cases, general commercial disputes, environmental litigation and multistate consumer data privacy class actions.

Back row L-R Stephen Berry, Anthony Morris, Austin Bersinger and Randy Evans. Front row L-R Keshia Lipscomb, Robin Johnson and Katy Guinn.

Dentons

Dentons won impressive litigation matters in the insurance field in 2016.

Daily Report Law Department of the Year 2017 Labor and Employment Greenberg Traurig, Atlanta.Back Row L-R Todd D. Wozniak, Mellori E. Lumpkin, Brett A. Janich, Carranza M. Pryor, Samaya Ellard and Mitchell A. Robinson. Front Row L-R Jonathan M. Young, Natasha L. Wilson, David Long-Daniels and Adonica Starke- Melson.

Greenberg Traurig

One of Greenberg Traurig's big wins for its labor practice group was its representation of Zaxby's in a putative collective action brought by Ayotunda Lovett on behalf of herself and others claiming Zaxby's didn't pay proper overtime compensation.

Greenberg Traurig

One of the biggest wins for Greenberg Traurig's mass torts/products liability team was a complete defense verdict for client C. R. Bard in the closely-watched pelvic mesh trial in the 16th Judicial Circuit of Missouri.

Ga. Dept. of Law, Medicaid Fraud Control Unit

One specialty practice group stood out in 2016: the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) of the Georgia Department of Law.

Jonathan Pope, Hasty Pope, Gainesville, Georgia

Tea Party Patriots, Member Pegged with $833K Libel Verdict

By Greg Land |

A jury also found the Tea Party Patriots acted in bad faith or were stubbornly litigious, teeing up additional litigation by the plaintiff to recover some of his attorney fees.

Brian Steel, Steel Law Firm

By Greg Land |
L-R Curtis Anderson and Chris Harrison, Downey and Cleveland, Marietta, Georgia

Jury Clears Doctor, Administrator of Liability in Inmate's Death

By Greg Land |

The 25-year-old inmate was suffering from stage-four cirrhosis of the liver and acute alcoholic hepatitis at the time of his death.

Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr

Georgia's AG and Senators Cheer Trump for Rolling Back Water Regulation

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Georgia's attorney general and both its U.S. senators are cheering President Donald Trump for what they view as the beginning of the end of the Obama administration's Waters of the United States regulations.

State Bar of Georgia Building, Atlanta

Inmate Convicted of Mailing Threat, Fake Anthrax to Georgia Bar

By R. Robin McDonald |

The letter that arrived at the State Bar of Georgia in April 2016 containing a white powdery substance contained an ominous threat. "We will kill of all you. … Have some 'anthrax,'" it said, according to federal court records. Federal authorities said Tuesday that the man who sent that letter, Travis Ball, 50, has been sentenced to two years in federal prison for mailing the threat, which did not contain actual anthrax.

Steptoe & Johnson offices in Washington, D.C. June 12, 2015. Photo by Diego M. Radzinschi/THE NATIONAL LAW JOURNAL.

Steptoe & Johnson Accused of Discriminating Against Female Lawyers

By Scott Flaherty |

Steptoe & Johnson became the latest major law firm to face accusations that it discriminates against women lawyers.

National Labor Relations Board in Washington, D.C.

Littler Mendelson's William Emanuel Gets Trump Nod for NLRB

By Erin Mulvaney |

William Emanuel, a Los Angeles-based management-side attorney, will be President Donald Trump's second pick for the National Labor Relations Board, a move that would give the long incomplete five-member panel a Republican majority poised to adopt pro-employer stances.

Thomas Mazziotti, Hall Booth Smith, Atlanta.

Greenberg Shareholder Jumps to Hall Booth for Trial Practice—and Other 'On the Move' News

By Meredith Hobbs |

Tom Mazziotti has left internatonal firm Greenberg Traurig, where he was a shareholder, for a partnership at Hall Booth Smith, saying the smaller, Atlanta-based litigation defense firm is a better fit for his trial practice.

Bright Shines as Unrelenting, Fearless Champion of Condemned

By R. Robin McDonald |

Stephen Bright—for decades the brave heart of Atlanta's Southern Center for Human Rights—believes the death penalty is morally wrong, "a primitive, barbaric punishment" that he said degrades and coarsens society. He has dedicated much of his legal career to stepping between Death Row inmates and their final walk to execution. When all else fails, he bears witness to their deaths, letting them know they are not alone as they die and comforting their families afterward.

The Coca-Cola Co. legal department, Atlanta

The Coca-Cola Co.

Four SCOTUS Page-Turners for Your Summer Reading List

By Tony Mauro |

Tony Mauro highlights the best of this year's Supreme Court fiction, where justices have lives, including sex lives, and get caught up in all kinds of mayhem. In between the heart-pounding action, you might find some useful insights about the court.

Chief Justice P. Harris Hines, Georgia Supreme Court

Georgia Supreme Court Appoints New JQC Members

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The Georgia Supreme Court has appointed four members to the reconstituted Judicial Qualifications Commission, the group responsible for disciplinary oversight of judges.

L-R Brian Steel and Donald Wakeford.

Georgia Justices Consider If Lawyer's Demand Letter Is Criminal

By R. Robin McDonald |

​The 2012 demand letter that Marietta attorney David Cohen sent to Waffle House Chairman and former CEO Joe Rogers Jr. in 2012 on behalf of Rogers' longtime housekeeper, Mye Brindle, was harsh. At issue before the state Supreme Court on Monday was whether Cohen committed a crime.

Stephen Humphreys, Athens Ga.

Opinion: Who Needs Confederate Statues? We've Got the Georgia Supreme Court

By Stephen Humphreys |

In his very original originalist thinking, Georgia Supreme Court Justice Keith Blackwell has created a whole new theory of the interpretation of the texts of statutes and Constitutional provisions.

gavel

Ga. Man Gets Probation After Pleading Guilty to Rape of Girl

A Georgia man accused of raping a 13-year-old girl has pleaded guilty to statutory rape and avoided a potential prison sentence.

Peter Ferrari Mural, Atlanta.

City Agrees to Halt Enforcement of Ordinance That Threatened Artwork

By R. Robin McDonald |

Faced with a federal court challenge by several Atlanta artists, the city of Atlanta has agreed to halt enforcement of a city ordinance that officials had cited in threatening to obliterate publicly visible murals on private property.

MLB logo on glove

Minor Leaguers Strike Out in Antitrust Suit Against MLB

By Ross Todd |

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit sided with MLB and its lawyers at Keker, Van Nest & Peters on Monday, finding that Congress explicitly exempted minor league baseball from the federal antitrust law in the Curt Flood Act of 1998.

Claud

Prosecutors' Claims of Special Treatment for McIver Are Lies, Claims Chief Jailer

By R. Robin McDonald |

Fulton County's chief jailer said Monday that an emergency motion by county prosecutors claiming Atlanta attorney Claud "Tex" McIver is being afforded "preferential treatment" while incarcerated included "blatant lies."

Demonstrators outside the U.S. Supreme Court moments before the court announced its opinion in the same-sex marriage case Obergefell v Hodges.  June 26, 2015.

SCOTUS Will Review Gay Wedding Cake Case From Colorado

By Tony Mauro |

Two years after embracing same-sex marriage, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday agreed to deal with a repercussion from its ruling by taking up the case of a Colorado baker who refused to make a custom wedding cake for a gay couple.

Marjie Dickey, Agriculture Water Project Manager at Georgia’s Environmental Protection Division.

Deal Drafts New EPD Boss as U.S. Supreme Court Ponders Water War Case

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Gov. Nathan Deal took a step Friday toward addressing the lingering issue in litigation water wars with Florida—what to do about exponentially increasing irrigation on big commercial farming operations in South Georgia.

Sharon Rowen, Georgia lawyer and filmmaker of “Balancing the Scales.”

Film About Women Leaving Law Airs Nationwide Starting Next Month

By Angela Morris |

More than 260 public television stations will begin showing the documentary "Balancing the Scales," a film that delves into why female lawyers are leaving the legal profession en masse.

Justice Robert Benham

Ga. High Court Dismisses Challenge to Private School Tax Credits

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Taxpayers supported by the American Civil Liberties Union, the Anti-Defamation League and Americans United for the Separation of Church and State have lost their challenge to a tuition tax credit for private and religious schools.

Adriana Ibarra Vazquez, Barco, Atlanta.

For One of Georgia's New Lawyers, It's Been a Long Trip

By Meredith Hobbs |

Adriana Ibarra Vazquez is the first foreign legal consultant to become a member of the State Bar of Georgia.

The Slants

Slants' High Court Win Opens the Gate for 'Offensive' Trademark Bids

By Todd Cunningham |

When the Supreme Court this week gave a green light to a rock band composed of Asian-American musicians that wanted to use the name "The Slants," it struck down a portion of the 71-year-old Lanham Act that bars disparaging trademarks. That gave a major boost to the hopes of the owners of the NFL's Washington Redskins, who have already filed to establish the case as controlling precedent in their battle to reinstate their trademark, which was suspended as racially offensive toward Native Americans. But they weren't the only ones.

Mary Trachian-Bradley, Law Offices of Steven J. Strelzik, Atlanta.

Appeals Court Revives Doctor-on-Doctor Libel Suit

By Greg Land |

The Georgia Court of Appeals ruled comments one doctor made about another in an email to patients could be construed as libel.

Judge Nelly Withers, DeKalb County Recorders Court

State Appellate Court Reinstates Claims Against Former DeKalb Judge, Court Administrator

By R. Robin McDonald |

Like hundreds of other people ticketed for traffic infractions in DeKalb County, Bobby Schroeder showed up at court and paid his fine. But personnel with DeKalb County Recorders Court told the state Department of Driver Services that Schroeder failed to appear, never paid up, and his driver's license should be suspended.

Hiring Misfires Show Need for Tougher Law Firm Vetting

In less than a year, Big Law has seen at least three lateral hires go seriously—even criminally—awry.

Abdi Shayesteh

Ex-Big Law Associate Sells Experience With Legal Startup

By Meghan Tribe |

Abdi Shayesteh, a former King & Spalding associate who held several Big Law and in-house roles, has created an online platform called AltaClaro that links lawyers to top legal professionals that provide mentorship and counseling necessary to advance their legal careers.

Jack Jirak, Partner, Troutman Sanders

By Adina Solomon |

Anisa Abdullahi, Partner, Arnall Golden Gregory

By Adina Solomon |

Petrina Hall McDaniel, Partner, Dentons

By Adina Solomon |

Corrin Drakulich, Principal, Fish & Richardson

By Adina Solomon |

Chris Breault, Trial Attorney, Breault Law Firm

By Adina Solomon |

Anuj Desai, Partner, Arnall Golden Gregory

By Adina Solomon |

Eric Fisher, Partner, Taylor English Duma

By Adina Solomon |

Andy Tuck, Partner, Alston & Bird

By Adina Solomon |

Cristiane Wolfe, Partner, Dentons

By Adina Solomon |

Justin King, Partner, King & Spalding

By Adina Solomon |

James Johnson, Partner, Knight Johnson

By Adina Solomon |

Lindsey Mann, Partner, Troutman Sanders

By Adina Solomon |

Mike Parisi, Partner, Alston & Bird

By Adina Solomon |

Daniel Simon, Partner, DLA Piper

By Adina Solomon |

Sara Deskins Tucker, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig

By Sara Deskins Tucker, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig |

Angela Ramson, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig

By Adina Solomon |
Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless building

Downtown Homeless Shelter to Close Following Settlement

By Greg Land |

The confidential agreement comes after years of litigation and calls for the Metro Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless shelter to close in August.

L-R Mark Wasserman and Lee Ranson

Eversheds Sutherland Leaders Talk Clients, Costs After Partner Confab

By Meredith Hobbs |

The newly-combined firm pulled off quite a feat this week, mustering 680 partners and top operations people together in London for the firm's first partners' meeting amid record-setting June heat.

Judge John J. Ellington, Georgia Court of Appeals

Court of Appeals Judge Ellington Says He Will Run for Supreme Court

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Georgia Court of Appeals Judge John Ellington has confirmed that he plans to run for a seat on the Georgia Supreme Court next year and has organized a campaign and plans to announce his candidacy Thursday.

Trinh Huynh, Atlanta

Indictment Handed Down in Slaying of UPS Lawyer

By R. Robin McDonald |

Nearly three months after a UPS corporate attorney was gunned down as she crossed Peachtree Street in downtown Atlanta during morning rush hour, a Fulton County grand jury on Wednesday charged her suspected assailant with murder.

Poster for upcoming Tom Cruise movie

Fatal Plane Crash in Tom Cruise Movie Leads to Insurance Fight

By Greg Land |

Allianz Global Risks U.S. Insurance wants Great American Insurance to cover $425,000 in mounting costs related to two California wrongful death suits.

Stephen Dillard is sworn in Wednesday as chief judge of the Court of Appeals of Georgia by Gov. Nathan Deal.

Tweets, Live Stream and Bow Ties Mark '@JudgeDillard' Investiture

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Despite an invitation shared on social media for the investiture ceremony installing Judge Stephen Dillard as chief of the Georgia Court of Appeals Wednesday, the outgoing chief judge confessed she was afraid it wouldn't happen.

Cornerstone Medical Center, Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia

Blue Cross Accused of Underpaying Walker County's Only Hospital

By Greg Land |

A lawsuit filed by Cornerstone Medical Center claims the hospital is losing $9,600 a month because the insurer is not honoring its contract.

Elbert P. Tuttle Courthouse, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, Atlanta

Role of School Board's GC Dooms Retaliation Claim by Construction Company

By Kristen Rasmussen |

A Florida county school board has won the latest round of litigation against a construction company that claimed it suffered illegal retaliation when it complained after its bid for a project failed.

The Cheetah, Atlanta.

Former Dancer Dismisses Civil Racketeering Claims Against Strip Club

By R. Robin McDonald |

A federal racketeering suit filed against Atlanta's iconic strip club The Cheetah—that the club's defense counsel denounced as "false, spurious, and baseless"—has been dismissed voluntarily by the former dancer who filed it.

James Leipold, executive director, The National Association for Law Placement

It's Lonely at the Top for Atlanta First-Year Associates Making $180K

By Meredith Hobbs |

Lucky associates at one law firm in Atlanta are making a whopping $180,000 in their first year on the job, according to the National Association for Law Placement Inc. But they are hardly the norm.

Disability Benefits Were Non-Marital Property Not Subject to Equitable Division in Divorce, Georgia Supreme Court Rules

By Steven A. Meyerowitz, Esq., Director, FC&S Legal |

The Georgia Supreme Court has ruled that disability benefits issued pursuant to an insurance policy after the insured had been catastrophically injured were non-marital property and were not subject to equitable division when the insured and his wife divorced.

Judson Graves

Emory Picks Alston Stalwart Graves as Interim Law Dean

By Meredith Hobbs |

Emory University School of Law has chosen retired Alston & Bird partner Judson Graves as its interim dean, effective Aug. 1. Robert Schapiro, who's been Emory Law's dean for five years, announced in March that he will step down when his term ends in July and return to teaching

Steven Lefkoff, Lefkoff Law, Atlanta.

A Lawyer for Every Used Car Dealer—and Other 'On the Move' News

By Meredith Hobbs |

Steven Lefkoff has started his own firm, Lefkoff Law, with a unique niche representing used car dealers, along with the finance companies that make car loans.

William Hill

McIver's Lawyers Accuse Prosecutors of Withholding Evidence

By R. Robin McDonald |

Attorneys for Atlanta attorney Claud "Tex" McIver have accused Fulton County prosecutors of intentionally withholding exculpatory evidence generated by Atlanta police that would belie the murder charges currently pending against McIver in an emergency motion filed in Fulton County Superior Court on Monday.

Mueller Recruits Another Lawyer from Solicitor General's Office to Russia Probe

A second lawyer from the U.S. solicitor general’s office has signed on to the legal team of special counsel Robert Mueller in his investigation of possible ties between the Trump campaign and Russia.

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

11th Circuit Gives Geico a Redo on Damages Following $30M Verdict

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The game isn't over, but Geico scored points with an opinion from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit that takes a deep look at uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage and bad faith claims in Florida.

Colleagues Remember Judge Marvin Shoob: Letters

McLain & Merritt and the president of the State Bar of Georgia write in remembrance of longtime U.S. District Court Judge Marvin Shoob.

The Slants

Supreme Court Rules First Amendment Protects Disparaging Trademarks

By Tony Mauro |

A high-profile trademark fight centered on the Asian-American rock band The Slants ended Monday with a ruling that the Lanham Act’s prohibition against “disparaging” marks violates the First Amendment.

Stephen B. Bright, Southern Center for Human Rights, Atlanta

U.S. Supreme Court Rules for Alabama Death Row Inmate Over Mental Health Access in Trial

By R. Robin McDonald |

In an Alabama case championed by the Southern Center for Human Rights in Atlanta, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled 5-4 that an Alabama Death Row inmate was denied his right to consult with a mental health experts in his 1986 capital murder trial.

Judge Phyllis Kravitch, U.S Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

Kravitch Recalled for Stories, Sense of Social Justice

By Greg Land |

Those who clerked for the federal appeals court judge who died Thursday at age 96 or who appeared before her in court remember a woman known for her towering intellect.

L-R Quinton Spencer, Alan Hamilton and Daniel Beer, Atlanta.

After $1.2M DUI Wreck Verdict, Case Settles For $1.3M

By Greg Land |

The jury was weighing how much to add in punitive damages when the settlement was reached.

Judge Marvin Shoob

Judge Shoob Remembered as 'Irreplaceable'

By R. Robin McDonald |

The legacy of Marvin Shoob, a federal judge in Atlanta for more than 35 years known as much for his fearlessness as for his compassion on the bench, should be a promise from all who knew him to "do some good," his son urged family, friends, and members of the legal community at Shoob's June 16 memorial service.

Justice Keith Blackwell

Georgia Supreme Court Says State Can't Be Sued Over Abortion Law

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The justices ruled Monday that the state cannot be sued over a controversial law that bans most abortions after 20 weeks and gives prosecutors access to women's medical records—but they leave the door open to other challenges.

Jacksonville, Florida, skyline

Hall Booth Expands in Florida, Adding Jacksonville Office

By Meredith Hobbs |

The firm has been expanding steadily beyond its Atlanta base, with the new office expected to primarily handle medical malpractice work.

Nicole C. Leet

New YLD President Challenges Young Lawyers to Bridge Justice Gap

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Nicole Leet broke with tradition when she became president of the State Bar of Georgia Young Lawyers Division last weekend.

U.S. Justice Department in Washington

Feds Look to Bar Public Access to Immigration Policy Manual

By R. Robin McDonald |

The Justice Department submitted the manual under a provisional seal because there may be privileged or sensitive information in it.

L-R Larry Bracken, Alana Bracken and Michael Lucas.

Beer Tasting & BBQ Battle Raises Over $80K for Legal Aid, AVLF

The fifth annual event drew more than 750 guests to Midtown's Park Tavern.

Georgia Supreme Court and Court of Appeals Building

High Court to Consider Legal Malpractice, Property Taxes and Workers' Comp Cases

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The Georgia Supreme Court will hear oral arguments next week over whether a retirement community for wealthy seniors should be exempt from property taxes, what should be required to sue a law firm for legal malpractice and how long to provide Workers' Compensation Act benefits after an injury.

Judge Edward Carnes of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, Atlanta

11th Circuit Green Lights Traffic Cam Class Action

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The ruling opens the road for an Alabama class action lawsuit over traffic cameras that catch drivers running red lights.

U.S. Supreme Court building

Anticipation Builds for Huge SCOTUS Ruling on Forum-Shopping

By Tony Mauro |

Civil litigators and corporate counsel can almost taste victory in Bristol-Myers Squibb v. Superior Court of California, seen as the term's most important case on jurisdiction.

Charles Tobin, with Ballard Spahr

Ballard Spahr’s New Media Lawyer Dives in with Comey Memos Suit

By Cogan Schneier |

Roughly ten days after ditching Holland & Knight due to the firm’s alleged moratorium on challenging President Donald Trump, Tobin filed a lawsuit Thursday against the FBI on behalf of CNN.

In support of the 10 students seeking in-state tuition under the DACA law, young people fill the courtroom during oral arguments at the Georgia Court of Appeals on Thursday.

Georgia Court Weighs In-State Tuition Policy

By R. Robin McDonald |

At the Georgia Court of Appeals Thursday, state attorneys argued on behalf of the Board of Regents that a Fulton County judge got their ruling on a controversial policy wrong last year.

Judge Phyllis Kravitch.

Groundbreaking Judge Phyllis Kravitch Dies at 96

By Jonathan Ringel |

Judge Phyllis Kravitch, the first woman to serve on a federal appeals court in the Deep South, died Thursday morning at the age of 96.

Plaintiffs Lawyer Advertising Proves Ever Bolder

Anyone who’s driven on the highway or watched daytime television has likely seen one: an ad, complete with a toll-free number and maybe a catchphrase or a jingle, plugging a lawyer who can help someone who’s been hurt in a slip-and-fall incident or by something more serious, like asbestos exposure.

Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr

Georgia AG Targets Drugmakers After 'Mass Overdose'

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

State Attorney General Chris Carr announced Thursday that his Consumer Protection Unit is joining a bipartisan coalition of attorneys general from across the U.S., investigating whether manufacturers have engaged in unlawful practices in the marketing and sale of opioids.

Judge William Ray.

Criminal Case Revived Against Ex-Deputy Accused of Courthouse Groping

By Greg Land |

The Georgia Court of Appeals has revived felony false-imprisonment charges against a former Fulton County sheriff's deputy who allegedly restrained and groped two women and exposed himself while on duty at the county courthouse.

SunTrust Hit With Suit Over Banker's Explicit LinkedIn Message

By Ross Todd |

The way SunTrust's in-house legal team initially responded to the Jane Doe plaintiff plays a role in the complaint.

James D. Durham, U.S. attorney, Southern District of Georgia

Dodge County Pharmacy Settles False Medicare Billing Case for More Than $2.1M

By Greg Land |

A Dodge County pharmacy has agreed to pay $2.175 million to settle a Medicare false-billing case in what authorities in Georgia's Southern District say is their largest civil recovery ever under the Controlled Substances Act, as well as the largest pharmacy-related False Claims Act settlement in the district's history.

David Ralston.

House Speaker Appoints Own Defense Lawyer in Bar Complaint to Judicial Watchdog Agency

By R. Robin McDonald |

The same day the State Bar of Georgia publicly reprimanded the Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives for an ethics violation involving one of his former clients, Speaker David Ralston appointed the attorney who had defended him during the course of the ethics probe as one of his two representatives to the state's judicial watchdog agency.

Philadelphia's Soda Tax Upheld by Appeals Court

By P.J. D'Annunzio |

Philadelphia’s sweetened beverage tax, the first of its kind ever to be enacted in the nation, has been upheld by the Commonwealth Court amid the tax's projected revenue shortfall.

Randall Davis, general counsel, Phoenix Air

Georgia Air Carrier's GC Talks About Bringing Prisoner Home

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

When an American college student was recently released from a North Korean prison and taken to a Cincinnati hospital late Tuesday night, it was a Georgia-based specialty air carrier that delivered him, according to the company's general counsel.

Locke Lord Leaders Launch Boutique Amid TCPA Uncertainty for Big Law

By Roy Strom |

Like many big firm lawyers, Locke Lord's Martin Jaszczuk built a practice representing clients hit by a wave of telemarketing suits. Now that he’s on his own, what happens if that torrent turns back to a trickle?

Paul Bond and Mark Melodia, with Reed Smith.

Law Firm Apps Designed to Impress Clients—and to Win Them

By Miriam Rozen |

The apps keep coming, but do most clients care?

Gov. Nathan Deal

Deal Promises Justice for Prison Guard Shootings

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Gov. Nathan Deal has responded to the shooting of two Georgia Department of Corrections officers Tuesday with this simple promise: "Fugitives will be brought to justice."

Connect2Court CEO Drew Maggart (second from right ) with some of the homeless people he recruited to file dispossessories at the Fulton Conty Magistrate Court.

Court Prohibits Use of Homeless to Evade Bulk Filing Limits

By Greg Land |

One company is suing over claims the courts are dragging out the processing of cases not filed through a specific vendor.

Sharon A. Gay, Dentons, Atlanta

Sharon Gay Takes Over Dentons' Atlanta Office

By Jonathan Ringel |

The new managing partner practices in state and local government law, particularly with regard to economic development incentives.

Lawyer William Hill (left) and Claud

McIver's Lawyer Rips Judge and DA After Bond Denied

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The lawyer for Claud "Tex" McIver releases a statement after a judge orders that his client, an attorney accused of murdering his wife, remain in jail until his trial, which is set for Oct. 30.

Judge Marvin Shoob

Judge Marvin Shoob, Known for Tackling Institutional Injustice, Dies at 94

By R. Robin McDonald |

U.S. District Judge Marvin H. Shoob — whose fierce willingness to address institutional injustices during more than 36 years on the federal bench in Atlanta stemmed from a seminal experience as a young soldier in World War II — died Monday. He was 94.

Kenneth Hodges

Why Georgia Lawyers Had More Yoga and Less Booze at Annual Meeting

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The bar is emphasizing healthy lifestyle choices in order to help its 49,000 members avoid the all too common dangers of depression, anxiety, alcoholism and even suicide.

Big Law Labor Firms on Hook in Joe's Crab Bankruptcy

By Meghan Tribe |

The choppy seas of the restaurant industry have swamped another eatery in Joe’s Crab Shack, whose Houston-based parent company owes nearly $220,000 to a pair of high-powered, Atlanta-based labor and employment firms. Ignite Restaurant Group Inc., owner of the popular seafood establishment and casual dining chain Brick House Tavern + Tap, filed for bankruptcy in Houston on June 6.

James Elliott (L) receives the Randolph Thrower Lifetime Achievement Award from Avarita L. Hanson, executive director , Chief Justice's Commission on Professionalism.

State Bar Presents Equality Awards; Swift Currie Volunteers at Food Event

The State Bar of Georgia on May 4 presented the Commitment to Equality Awards, and 85 Swift Currie staff, clients and families packed enough food to feed 2,704 families.

Judge Mark Cohen

Ga. Judge Blocks Trump Administration From Deporting Woman

By R. Robin McDonald |

A federal judge in Atlanta has barred the Trump administration, at least temporarily, from revoking the immigration status of an undocumented woman whose case helped to prompt the creation of President Barack Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Trump's Tweets Are 'Authority' in Advocates' New Travel Ban Filings

In what may be a first at the U.S. Supreme Court, President Donald Trump’s Twitter account was identified Monday as an “authority” along with the cases, law review articles and news citations that lawyers typically use to bolster their arguments.

The General Motors Headquarters, located in Detroit, Michigan.

Judge Makes Key Rulings in GM Ignition Defect MDL Case

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Judge Jesse Furman issued a 19-page order teeing up the case by dealing with pretrial requests. The judge dealt with four motions in limine from attorneys representing Dennis Ward, an Arizona man alleging that GM's highly-publicized ignition defect caused his crash and lasting injuries.

Richard and Mildred Loving meet with Bernard Cohen and Philip Hirschkop, the lawyers who took their case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

On 50th Anniversary of Loving v. Virginia, 1 in 6 New Couples Are Racially Mixed

By Jesse J. Holland |

When the Supreme Court decided the landmark case, only 3 percent of newlyweds were intermarried.

Titus Nichols, Bell & Brigham, Augusta, Ga.

Judge Says Reality Winner Can Pay for Her Own Lawyer

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The judge who appointed Titus Nichols of Augusta to be Reality Winner's lawyer has changed his mind -- not about the lawyer but about who pays the bill. U.S. Magistrate Judge Brian Epps has signed an order terminating his appointment of Nichols to represent Winner as court appointed counsel.

Speaker of the Georgia House of Representatives David Ralston

House Speaker David Ralston to Receive Bar Reprimand at Annual Conference

By Greg Land |

The State Bar of Georgia's Disciplinary Review Panel is slated to issue its reprimand of Georgia House Speaker David Ralston on Friday, as the bar meets for its annual convention at Jekyll Island through the weekend.

William Hill

McIver's Defense Says Search for Dead Wife's Alleged Second Will Turns Up Empty

By R. Robin McDonald |

The attorney representing an Atlanta lawyer who was indicted in April on charges of malice and felony murder in his wife's death and of influencing witnesses after he shot her about how she died says the search for a second will has come up empty.

Gregg Allman

Mourning Gregg Allman, a Lawyer Looks Back and Writes

By Rex Smith, Henning Mediation and Arbitration Services |

A "semi-autobiographical" essay with people from his past—and concerts they attended—mixed into composite characters and composite anecdotes captures Georgia's Southern rock heritage.

Debra Pole of Sidley Austin in Los Angeles, left, and James T. Smith of Blank Rome in Philadelphia.

J&J Brings Big Law Firepower for Talc Trials

By Amanda Bronstad |

Facing trials in Missouri and Los Angeles, Johnson & Johnson has called on lawyers from Sidley Austin and Dechert to fight claims that prolonged use of its baby powder caused women to get ovarian cancer.

James Rice, Atlanta attorney

'Eggshell' Plaintiff Nets $700K for Minor Bumper-Bender

By Greg Land |

The attorney who landed a $700,000 award for a man who developed back pain after driving away from a low-speed, minimal damage car crash said he went into trial prepared for a defense verdict.

Brian “Buck” Rogers

What Worries Georgia's New State Bar President

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

As Fried Rogers Goldberg partner Brian "Buck" Rogers rolled with his family toward Jekyll Island for the State Bar of Georgia annual meeting to be sworn in as president, he talked about what worries him most.

Patrick O'Connor.Handout Photo 5-14-2015

Challenges 'Turned Out to Be Highlights,' Bar President Says

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The State Bar of Georgia's outgoing president, Patrick O'Connor, reflects on his term as he prepares to deliver his final speech and hand over the gavel.

L-R Katrina Eiland, ACLU, Jessica Colotl and Charles Kuck respond to media questions outside the Northern District of Georgia Courthouse in Atlanta on June 8, 2017.

Judge Presses DOJ Lawyer as to Why Government Revoked DREAMER's Immigrant Status

By R. Robin McDonald |

A federal judge in Atlanta is considering whether to issue an injunction that would halt, at least temporarily, the deportation of an undocumented immigrant woman brought to the U.S. when she was 11 who in 2010 became a flashpoint for the nation's ongoing political struggle over immigration.

Judge Todd Markle, Fulton County Superior Court

High Court, Reversing a Reversal, Says Judge Was Not Out of Line

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Todd Markle has gone from reversed to vindicated as a case before him moved from one arena to another on appeal.

L-R Judge Craig Schwall and Richard Hyde.

Prosecutors Say McIver’s Ties to Judge, JQC Member Warrant No Bond on Murder Charge

By R. Robin McDonald |

When Fulton County Superior Court Judge Craig Schwall visited Atlanta attorney Claud "Tex" McIver at the county jail where McIver —charged with the murder of his wife — was being held without bond, Schwall told him, "Hey, man, I'm with you 1,000 percent," a county prosecutor says.

How a Mayer Brown Lawyer Brought a Nazi-Looted Family Heirloom Out of the Shadows

On a Sunday in late April, Andrew Tauber, a Mayer Brown partner in Washington, boarded a plane for Paris, where he and his father planned to spend an hour alone with a painting that his grandparents, the original owners, had sought for so long but did not live to see again.

Christopher Wray, King & Spalding.

Trump Tweets: King & Spalding Lawyer to Head FBI

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker and Katelyn Polantz |

President Donald Trump tweeted his choice for the new FBI director Wednesday morning – former prosecutor Christopher Wray, now with Atlanta's King & Spalding.

Andrew Goldner

Atlanta Council Passes Vicious Dog Ordinance

By Greg Land |

An attorney representing the family of a boy mauled to death by dogs on his way to kindergarten in January welcomed Monday's vote by the Atlanta City Council levying more stringent requirements on the owners of dangerous and vicious dogs.

Paul Clement, NRA File to Appear in Sandy Hook Litigation

Paul D. Clement, a former U.S. solicitor general and one of the country’s foremost litigators, is working once again with the National Rifle Association in an effort to get the largest gun lobby to write an amicus brief in the lawsuit filed by Sandy Hook families.

Georgia State University College of Law, Atlanta.

Sensing Demand, GSU Law Launches Health Law LL.M.

By Meredith Hobbs |

At $16,858 per year in tuition and fees for Georgia residents, the new degree costs a fraction of other top health law programs.