Recent News

David Schaeffer, left, and Michael Caldwell sing “Legal Prose” from year two

The Bard Show Reunion Marks 10 Years of 'A Courthouse Line' Productions [SLIDESHOW]

Participants from each of the Atlanta Bar Association's "A Courthouse Line" productions attended the first-ever Bard Show Reunion, held at King & Spalding on Feb. 28.

Slimmer This Time, McKenna May Be Pondering Dentons Merger Again

By Alyson M. Palmer |

The McKenna Long & Aldridge that decided not to become part of global megafirm Dentons in late 2013 is not quite the same firm that is considering giving the proposed union another go.

L-R Tommy Malone, Albert

Jury Awards Lawyer and Wife $16.5M for Crash With Logging Truck

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A jury in the small town of Sandersville returned a $16.5 million verdict Wednesday against the owner of a logging truck that pulled out onto a rural Southeast Georgia highway, blocking the path of a pickup driven by a lawyer who was severely injured in the resulting crash.

Supreme Court Will Release Same-Day Audio of Marriage Cases

By Tony Mauro |

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday said it will release audio of the same-sex marriage oral arguments after the cases are heard on April 28.

Report: McKenna and Dentons Are Talking Merger Again

McKenna Long & Aldridge and Dentons are discussing a merger, just 15 months after their effort to tie up failed, according to our affiliate, The Am Law Daily. The Daily Report will follow up with more later today and tomorrow in print.

McKenna Long, Dentons Looking to Merge Again

By Brian Baxter |

A little more than a year after a potential merger between Dentons and McKenna Long & Aldridge fell through, the two Am Law 100 firms are once again looking to combine operations.

Paul Weathington

Med-Mal Jury Deadlocks at 11-1 for Defense [VIDEO]

By Kathleen Baydala Joyner |

Medical malpractice claims for $10.5 million, stemming from botched spinal surgery, ran aground with a mistrial in Fulton County State Court.

Summer-Associate Hiring Increases for Fifth Straight Year

By Karen Sloan |

Next summer’s law firm summer-associates class is likely to be the largest since 2009, data from the National Association for Law Placement show.

St. John's, Buffalo Waive LSAT for Some Students

By Andrew Denney |

In August, the ABA changed its rules to allow law schools to admit 10 percent of students in their entering classes without the LSAT, which has allowed St. John's University School of Law and the University at Buffalo Law School to admit high-performing students from affiliated undergraduate programs.

Kendrick McWilliams coaching football

For Kendrick McWilliams, Coaching Youth Sports Is About More Than the Game

By Laura Raines |

Kendrick McWilliams Sr. began playing pickup football and basketball on the streets of inner city Chicago as a kid.

L-R Sharri Edenfield, YLD President, State Bar of Georgia, Attorney General Sam Olens and Ga. Community Foodbank, Executive Director, Danah Craft.

Fourth Annual Georgia Legal Food Frenzy Kicks Off at Capitol

By Kathleen Baydala Joyner |

State Attorney General Sam Olens arrived under the Gold Dome Wednesday afternoon with a challenge for Georgia lawyers—collect 1.25 million pounds of food for families who rely on food assistance.

Demonstrators outside the U.S. Supreme Court, in Washington, D.C., on the day of arguments in <i>King v. Burwell</i>, regarding the government's Affordable Care Act subsidies.  March 4, 2015.

Health Reform Arguments Reflect Supreme Court's Ideological Divide

By Marcia Coyle |

The future of the nation’s health insurance law appeared Wednesday to rest with Chief Justice John Roberts Jr. and Justice Anthony Kennedy.

Watch Daily Report's Recent Videos Courtesy of Courtroom View Network

Within these Daily Report articles see Courtroom View Networks coverage of trials, hearings, and oral arguments.

Ex-Crime Lab Chief Sues Fulton DA and Others Over Fla. Defense Testimony

By Greg Land |

The former head of the Atlanta Police Department Crime Lab has sued the city, APD Chief George Turner, Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard and a senior prosecutor for what the plaintiff says was a criminal conspiracy to fire him over his agreement to testify for a defendant in a Florida criminal case.

L-R Jonathan Ringel, Brian Jordan, D. Orlando Ledbetter, Ron Thomas and David Cornwell Sr.

Lawyer Opens Up on Football Player's Case in Panel on Sports Law

By Jonathan Ringel |

Friday at the annual Georgia Bar Media and Judiciary Conference, an Atlanta lawyer who represents sports stars in trouble gave a first-hand account of the balancing act between helping a client avoid prison and salvaging the athlete's career.

Hillary Clinton.

Clinton’s Use of Personal Email Not Illegal—Technically

By Jenna Greene |

Hillary Clinton is facing a barrage of criticism for using her personal email account while serving as secretary of state, but lawyers say it’s unlikely she did anything illegal—at least not technically.

Vancouver, British Columbia

DLA Piper Breaks Into Canada With Davis Merger

By Julie Triedman |

A year after its bid to merge with now-defunct Canadian firm Heenan Blaikie fell through, DLA Piper has found a partner up north in Davis LLP, a 260-lawyer midtier firm based in Vancouver. The combination, effective in April, marks the latest combination of a U.S.-based global firm with one in Canada.

Andrew Louis Weiner

Woman With Bipolar Disorder Wins $32.5K Verdict After Being Fired

By R. Robin McDonald |

Andrew Weiner (above), whose client was a woman with bipolar disorder, said the verdict shows that mental disabilities are protected from discrimination.

Judge Anne Barnes

Appeals Panel Rules for Special Ed Teacher Accused of Mistreating Students

By Alyson M. Palmer |

A former special education teacher accused of mistreating her students is entitled to immunity from prosecution, a panel of the Georgia Court of Appeals held on Tuesday.

L-R Don Prophete and Neil Wasser

Constangy Adds Kansas City Lawyer to Its Nameplate

By Meredith Hobbs |

Don Prophete, a high-powered labor and employment lawyer in Kansas City, has joined Atlanta-based Constangy Brooks & Smith as a name partner from Littler—changing the labor and employment firm's name to Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete.

William Thomas Worthy and Julia Worthy

Young Lawyers Division Holds 2015 Signature Fundraiser 'Stars and Stripes' [SLIDESHOW]

The Young Lawyers Division of the State Bar of Georgia held its annual Signature Fund-raiser, "Stars and Stripes," on Feb. 28 at Terminal West in Atlanta.

Ron Charles Bingham II

Baker Donelson Adds, Loses Partners Seeking Greener Pastures

By Meredith Hobbs |

Securities litigator Scott Sherman has left Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz for a partnership at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, but Baker Donelson has added a partner, Ron Bingham II (above), to its bankruptcy practice from Stites & Harbison.

Tuition chartbuilder

An Elite Education's Going to Cost You

By Karen Sloan |

Tuition at U.S. law schools continues to increase even as demand for law degrees declines. And the increases are particularly pronounced at the elite schools that send the most graduates into the nation's largest law firms.

Patrise M. Perkins-Hooker

GC Keeps Eye on BeltLine's 'Transformative Potential'

Patrise Perkins-Hooker is the general counsel for the Atlanta BeltLine Inc. (ABI), where she is responsible for all legal matters including general corporate transactions, corporate governance, compliance and risk management, and a wide variety of real estate-related matters including transactional work and negotiations.

Chuck Efstration

Opposition Overwhelms Proposed Changes to PD System

By Kathleen Baydala Joyner |

State lawmakers have backtracked on proposed changes to the state public defender system, including the removal of a requirement that indigent clients receive services within 72 hours of their arrests.

David Hudson

Hospital Wins Right to Place Liens on Patients' Injury Suits

By Alyson M. Palmer |

The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday scuttled a lawsuit against an Augusta hospital over its collection practices, rejecting a patient's attempt to test the limits of the state's lien laws.

L to R: Yussuf Abdel-aleem is a graduate of Harvard Law School and founding member of Joseph, Aleem & Slowik. He represents health care providers and clinical laboratories in the Southeast. He has experience in employment litigation, health care compliance and general corporate governance.
Jacob Slowik is a partner at Joseph, Aleem & Slowik, representing clinical laboratories, physician groups and other health care organizations in commercial transactions, corporate reorganizations, financing, employment issues and complex litigation.

Compliant Client Billing Arrangements: Strategies for Health Care Counsel

By Yussuf Abdel-aleem and Jacob Slowik |

As counsel for a number of preeminent clinical laboratories and medical practices in the Southeast, our firm analyzes legal questions relating to the practice of client billing on a perennial basis.

Football

Group of Objectors To NFL Concussion Deal Cite Suicide

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

Lawyers pushing for approval of their settlement in the suit that former football players filed against the NFL have undercut their own argument and actually incentivized suicide, a dissenting group of former players argued in a supplemental objection filed Feb. 27.

L to R: Chief Judge Schuster, Joyette Holmes, former Chief Judge Grubbs and Cobb DA Vic Reynolds.

Cobb Judges Name New Chief Magistrate

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The Cobb Judicial Circuit Superior Court judges have named prosecutor Joyette Holmes as the next chief magistrate of Cobb County.

CNN’s New Series Rankles Legal Blog With Same Name

By Nell Gluckman |

CNN has published an online series on government debt collection called "Above the Law." But Elie Mystal, editor at large for the publisher of a popular legal blog by the same name, says not so fast. Mystal has turned to its readership of legal professionals to draft cease-and-desist letters to CNN as it tries to defend its trademark.

Georgia Supreme Court

One Lawyer Reprimanded, Another Surrenders License

The Supreme Court of Georgia on Monday issued discipline decisions regarding the following lawyers: Jeffrey L. Sakas, public reprimand; Joseph Citron, voluntary surrender of license

Frank Whire, photographer Builder Levy, center, and Mindy Planer

Arnall Golden Gregory Hosts Exhibits of Builder Levy's Photos for Black History Month [SLIDESHOW]

As a part of Black History Month, Arnall Golden Gregory’s Diversity, Hiring and Art committees hosted an exhibit of images by famed photographer Builder Levy at the Atlanta office of AGG.

L-R Laurie Speed, Natalie Woodward, Jennifer Jordan and Laura Shamp

Four Trial Lawyers Unite in Rare All-Women Plaintiffs Firm

By Meredith Hobbs |

Four women trial lawyers have banded together to start a plaintiffs firm, Shamp Speed Jordan Woodward—a notable development in the plaintiffs bar, which is still predominantly male.

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

Douglas Mincher Named Clerk of Court for 11th Circuit

By Alyson M. Palmer |

A career court administrator will be the next clerk of court for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

Richard Robbins

Lawyer in Courthouse Shooting Looks Back as Tenth Anniversary Approaches

By R. Robin McDonald |

Richard Robbins saw the judge and the court reporter shot dead. When the shooter looked at him, Robbins ran. Here is the rest of his story.

New Partners 2015

Atlanta firms have tapped their next generation of leaders. Find out more about this group including charts and a survey of demographics, trends and insights.

Sunset falls over the Florida Supreme Court building

Florida Supreme Court Says Knowledge Key in Hit-and-Run Cases

By News Service of Florida |

Florida Supreme Court Justice Charles Canady said "a willful violation can be established only if the driver had actual knowledge that a crash occurred."

Scott Wandstrat

Let's Abandon the Traditional Privilege Log

By Scott Wandstrat |

Hate is a strong word. But when it comes to describing my feelings about privilege logs, other words fall short.

Judge Julie Carnes receives a hug from her former colleague on the Northern District of Georgia bench, Chief Judge Thomas Thrash Jr.

New Eleventh Circuit Judges Get Official Welcome

By Alyson M. Palmer |

Undeterred by wintry weather, federal appeals court judges gathered in Atlanta this week officially welcomed their two newest colleagues with kind words, food and drink.

Michael Berlon

Former State Democratic Party Chair Pleads Guilty to Wire Fraud

By Kathleen Baydala Joyner |

Former Georgia Democratic Party Chairman Michael Berlon has pleaded guilty to one count of federal wire fraud and will be sentenced on May 6.

Mark Wasserman

Lawyer Who Won $175K in Sanctions From Sutherland Brings New Suit

By Kathleen Baydala Joyner |

Sutherland’s managing partner Mark Wasserman, (above), said the firm would fight “the unsupported, outrageous and defamatory allegations.”

Joe Leccese

Surge in Sports Mega-Deals a Boon to Proskauer, Others

By Brian Baxter |

Sports law may be a niche, but with today's deals worth billions of dollars, it's March Madness out there.

David Adelman

Ex-Atlantan, Ambassador Heads to Reed Smith in NY

By Meredith Hobbs |

Former U.S. ambassador to Singapore David Adelman has left Goldman Sachs for a partnership at Reed Smith to help the law firm develop its Asia practice.

David Cornwell

Leading Sports Lawyer Joins Barnes & Thornburg

By Brian Baxter |

Wm. David Cornwell Sr., a prominent litigator in the sports world with a stable of all-star clients, is leaving Gordon Rees Scully Mansukhani for Barnes & Thornburg. Gordon Rees, which acquired Cornwell’s Atlanta-based firm three years ago, sued former Cornwell client Alex Rodriguez last week for $380,000 in legal fees stemming from his representation of the New York Yankees star last year.

Brandon Hornsby

Valdosta Professor's Suit Test Limits of State Whistleblower Law

By Alyson M. Palmer |

A whistleblower lawsuit brought by a professor at Valdosta State University may test the limits of a 2012 state law letting individuals initiate claims over fraudulent use of state monies.

Henry J. Walker IV

Kilpatrick Townsend's PPP Spikes Due to Change in Equity Compensation System

By Meredith Hobbs |

Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton had a good 2014, posting a solid 5.9 percent revenue increase of $411.5 million. Profit per partner (PPP) shot up from $700,000 to $925,000 because the firm changed its equity partnership structure at the beginning of the year.

A. McArthur

Irvin Shares Love of Scotland Through Whisky Tastings

By Andy Peters |

It's an understatement to say Mac Irvin enjoys a wee dram of single-malt Scotch whisky. Obsessed may be more like it.

Howard University School of Law.

Howard Law Punches Above its Weight Class in Placing Grads

By Karen Sloan |

The 50 law schools that send the most graduates into associate jobs at the country’s largest law firms have something in common—each stands among the Top 100 law schools in the country, as ranked by U.S. News and World Report. With one notable exception: Howard University School of Law.

Tobacco Industry Reaches First Mass Settlement With Smokers

By Noreen Marcus |

Three plaintiffs firms reach a $100 million deal with Philip Morris, R.J. Reynolds and Lorillard to resolve 400 federal smoker cases.

Michael Bowers

Ex-AG Bowers: Religious Freedom Bills Are 'Ill-Conceived' and 'Mean-Spirited'

By R. Robin McDonald and Kathleen Baydala Joyner |

Gay rights groups on Wednesday introduced former Attorney General Mike Bowers as a new and unlikely ally in their fight to stop passage of legislation they say will use religion as an excuse to discriminate—a move that prompted eight legislator lawyers to dismiss Bowers' critique of the bills as "shameless."

Closed sign

Courts' Responses to Weather Vary

Courts around metro Atlanta varied in their response to predictions of a winter storm Wednesday. As of 10:30 a.m., federal trial and appeals courts were open for business, while the Georgia Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals planned to close at noon.

David Oscar Markus

Full Eleventh Circuit Hears Cellphone Privacy Case

By Alyson M. Palmer |

Backed by groups concerned about government intrusion on privacy, a criminal defense attorney on Tuesday asked a federal appeals court to put the brakes on the warrantless acquisition of cellphone company records that can help identify a phone user's location.

How the Carlton Fields Jorden Burt Merger Managed to Pay Off for the Miami and Tampa Firms

By Julie Kay |

A year after its merger, Carlton Fields Jorden Burt posted a 25 percent increase in gross revenue to $215.5 million and expects to rocket up the AmLaw 200 chart.

Ashoo K. Sharma

As Harry Norman GC, Ashoo Sharma Is at Executive Table—in the Hot Seat

By Mary Welch |

Ashoo Sharma joined Harry Norman from Weissman, Nowack, Curry & Wilco in Atlanta, where she was a partner in the litigation department and brokerage servicing team.

San Francisco downtown seen from Twin Peaks

Troutman Sanders Expands in California with San Francisco Office

By Meredith Hobbs |

Troutman Sanders is opening a San Francisco office to expand its presence in California and China.

Mary Margaret Oliver

DeKalb State Court Poised to Take Over Recorders Court

By Kathleen Baydala Joyner |

A plan to abolish DeKalb County's Recorders Court and establish a traffic court division within its state court has cleared major legislative hurdles.

UGA Law Public Interest Auction Set for Saturday

By Alyson M. Palmer |

The University of Georgia School of Law's Equal Justice Foundation, a student-run organization that provide stipends for UGA law students working in public interest positions over the summer, will host its annual benefit auction on Saturday, Feb. 28.

3 Make Short List for Cobb Chief Magistrate

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The 10 judges of Cobb County Superior Court will choose from three lawyers out of the total of 24 who applied for the chief judge's job in Magistrate Court.

Jason Graham

'Lost Boys of Sudan' Sue Moviemakers Over Compensation

By R. Robin McDonald |

Refugees from war-torn Sudan depicted in "The Good Lie" claim the film's writer and Hollywood producers tricked them into telling their stories and broke an agreement to compensate them.

Kelly Irvin suffered brain injuries following a 2012 accident in Missouri. Her lawyers say an ignition switch defect caused her 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt to lose power and prevented the airbags from deploying.

A Plan Emerges For GM Test Cases

By Amanda Bronstad |

Since announcing its recalls, GM has made strategic moves to avoid a trial over the ignition-switch lawsuits. But about 950 people are taking their chances in court.

James Kelleher

Trial Yields $100K Over Settlement Offer

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

A two-day trial over a car wreck netted the plaintiff $100,000 over what the defense first offered to settle, lawyers for both sides said.

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

Full 11th Circuit to Hear 3 Arguments Tuesday

By Alyson M. Palmer |

Tuesday's rare sitting of the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit will be the first time all 11 judges, including three appointed in the past year, will be on public display.

Using Clawback Agreements to Protect Inadvertent Disclosures

By J. Randolph Evans and Shari L. Klevens |

Few things are more important to attorneys—and their clients—than protecting the attorney-client privilege. Attorneys routinely take reasonable precautions to maintain the privilege and prevent disclosure, including labeling certain communications as privileged. But sometimes the worst still happens and privileged materials are inadvertently disclosed or produced.

Judge Henry R. Thompson

Why a Judge Told a Defendant 'You Have a Hole in Your Soul,' and Other Revelations

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Cobb County State Court Judge Henry Thompson made headlines last year when he said to a man being sentenced for a child molestation conviction: "You have a hole in your soul."

L-R Shane Nichols and Chris Lightner

New Program Provides Georgia Inventors With Patent Lawyers for Free

By Meredith Hobbs |

A new initiative to connect low-income inventors with pro bono patent lawyers kicked off at Alston & Bird last week, attracting a crowd of about 200.

Walgreens Allowed to Fire Pharmacist Over Vaccine Stance

By Saranac Hale Spencer |

Walgreens’ decision to fire a pharmacist who had moral objections to administering flu vaccines wasn’t unlawful, a federal judge has ruled.

Judge Debra Halpern Bernes

'Legal Legends' Event Supports Judge Bernes Scholarship Funds

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

Leaders of the Cobb County Bar Association are planning a "Legal Legends" education event to raise funds for the scholarship fund created to honor the late Court of Appeals Judge Debra Halpern Bernes.

Liz Grofic performing at Dad

DeKalb Prosecutor Does Drama by Day, Comedy by Night

By Kathleen Baydala Joyner |

Long before Liz Grofic was prosecuting cases as an attorney in the DeKalb County solicitor's office, she and her older sister were re-enacting Disney movies for their parents.

Congratulations to Local Attorney on State Appointment

On behalf of the State Bar of Georgia, I would like to offer congratulations to attorney Hannah K. Heck, vice chair and founding board member of the Westside Atlanta Charter School, on her appointment by Gov. Nathan Deal to serve on the state's new Education Reform Commission.

Former DeKalb Official Pleads Guilty to Taking Bribe

By R. Robin McDonald |

A former member of DeKalb County's Zoning Board of Appeals pleaded guilty to taking bribes in exchange for his vote, the acting U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia announced Thursday.

Making Partner: A Survey of the New Class

By Mary Welch |

Legal eagles looking for new partnership trends will have to look elsewhere, as the 2015 class tends to be, well, "normal."

New Partners: Climbing Up, Seeing the Light

By Mary Welch |

The pipeline to partnership has been clogged by residue from the recession, lateral partner movement and lifestyle issues, but observers have noticed a renewed interest by firms in developing top-tier attorneys so they have more of an unobstructed path.

Joel Ross Feldman

Dot-Win or Dot-Lose, Top-Level Domain Auctions Rake in Cash

By Joel Feldman |

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), a quasi-governmental agency that oversees the Internet, officially announced in 2011 that it would be expanding the Internet, perhaps exponentially.

JD Shipman

NEW PARTNER: J.D. Shipman

Steven Hill

Moe's Founder Seeks $1.8M in Attorney Fees From Franchisees

By R. Robin McDonald |

Steven Hill (above) successfully defended Moe’s Southwest Grill and founder Martin Sprock III against claims by some franchisees of overcharging for supplies and taking kickbacks.

Jim Butler

Whistleblowers' Lawyer Blasts US Government

By R. Robin McDonald |

An attorney for whistleblowers who was fined $1.6 million for talking to the news media while their claims were sealed has lashed out against federal prosecutors for "animus" against his clients.

Lynn M. Roberson

After Staying Out of Fray in '13, GAWL Plans to Back Gay Marriage

By Alyson M. Palmer |

Two years after its attempt to avoid controversy over gay marriage backfired, the Georgia Association for Women Lawyers has tentatively agreed to sign onto a brief urging the U.S. Supreme Court to allow same-sex couples to marry.

Ryne Thackston

Cobb Sexting Case Shows Inconsistencies in Law, Defense Lawyer Says

By Katheryn Hayes Tucker |

The defense lawyer for a high school teacher who confessed last week to sexting with a 17-year-old student said the case showed inconsistencies in how the law deals with sex between adults and older teenagers.

L to R: Robert Ingram and Thomas Cauthorn

Lawyers for Waffle House CEO Again Seek Fees in Sex Assault Suit [VIDEO]

By Greg Land |

Lawyers for Waffle House CEO Joseph Rogers Jr. were in court Tuesday trying to persuade a judge to order Rogers' former housekeeper and her lawyer to pay more than $190,000 in attorney fees incurred fighting the housekeeper's short-lived suit in Fulton County State Court that accused Rogers of sexual assault and battery.

Kenya Johnson

Kenya Johnson Is a Lawyer in Life … and on TV

By Laura Raines |

Watching TV courtroom dramas and crime shows as she grew up inspired Kenya Johnson to become a lawyer. So it's not surprising that when offered a spot in front of the TV camera, she took it.

NEW PARTNER: Kevin Gooch

Jeremy Berry

NEW PARTNER: Jeremy Berry

Alina M. Singer

NEW PARTNER: Alina Singer

Tony Roehl

NEW PARTNER: Tony Roehl

Keith Taylor

NEW PARTNER: Keith Taylor

Brian Smith

NEW PARTNER: Brian Smith

Charles Hooker

NEW PARTNER: Charles Hooker

Alison Prout

NEW PARTNER: Alison Prout

Eric Mull

NEW PARTNER: Eric Mull

Thad Woody

NEW PARTNER: Thad Woody

Lisa Payrow

NEW PARTNER: Lisa Payrow

Scott Zweigel

NEW PARTNER: Scott Zweigel

Nichole L. Hair

NEW PARTNER: Nichole Hair

Anuj Desai

NEW PARTNER: Anuj Desai