Medical Malpractice Conference for Alabama Attorneys
Held in Birmingham on Friday, April 27, 2018
Attend this one-day satisfaction-guaranteed event and enhance your professional skill set while gaining valuable CLE credit, 6 hours of general CLE and 1 hour of Ethics.
Defense attorneys and plaintiffs’ attorneys will discuss issues such as hospital liability, the use of technology in today’s trials, developing a theme in a medical malpractice case, defending a medical malpractice case, and keys to settling a medical malpractice case. Jefferson County Judge Elisabeth A. French will offer tips for courtroom practice. The one hour of ethics credit will explore ethical obligations in medical malpractice cases, including HIPAA and confidentiality issues.
Conference Highlights Include:
- How to avoid the top technology errors attorneys make when arguing a medical malpractice case
- How to prove your case – storytelling, controlling the case, and preventing death by jury instruction
- How a hospital can be liable for the actions of its employees and others
- Bias attending medical malpractice suits, how to discover its extent in jury selection, and how to frame the presentation of the case for the best opportunity to counter it
- How to defend medical malpractice cases, including defining the standard of care and using medical literature
- How to depose experts effectively and what to ask for prior to deposition
- How to use social media in jury selection
Your Distinguished Faculty
Robert Cooper is a founder of Stockham, Cooper & Potts, P.C. in Birmingham. During the course of his career, Mr. Cooper has tried numerous cases to a jury verdict throughout Alabama. His clients include businesses and individuals in the manufacturing, commercial transportation, health care and medical device, and insurance industries, among others. Mr. Cooper has defended clients in personal injury and professional negligence matters. He has represented business entities against claims of negligence, fraud and bad faith, and he has appeared on behalf of clients before the various authorities that regulate professional conduct. He is a Fellow of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers and the Alabama Law Foundation and is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates. He has been listed by Super Lawyers® and Best Lawyers in America® for several years.
Michael D. Ermert is a partner with the law firm of Hare, Wynn, Newell & Newton, LLP in Birmingham. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree and his law degree from The University of Alabama. He is a Past President of the Alabama Association for Justice, the Birmingham Bar Foundation, the Alabama Civil Justice Foundation, the Alabama chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates, and the Red Elephant Club of Birmingham. He is the past Chair of the Downtown Birmingham YMCA Board of Management and the Farrah Law Society, the alumni association for the University of Alabama School of Law. Mr. Ermert currently serves as an Alabama State Bar Commissioner, representing the 10th Judicial Circuit. He has been selected by Benchmark Litigation as one of the top litigation attorneys in the state of Alabama; named an “Alabama Super Lawyer,” one of the Top 50 lawyers in Alabama; and is listed as one of the Best Lawyers in America. He also has been given an AV rating, the highest attainable, by Martindale-Hubbell.
Judge Elisabeth A. French attended the University of Montevallo on an athletic scholarship and received her B.A. Degree with a double major in Political Science and Spanish in 1993. She earned her law degree from Samford University s Cumberland School of Law in 1997. Judge French entered the private practice of law and represented clients in the areas of education law and general civil litigation. In 1999, she began litigating complex civil cases. Judge French managed cases ranging from medical malpractice actions to mass tort litigation including diet drug litigation, hormone therapy cases, Vioxx, Celebrex, and Bextra. Judge French continued to handle civil matters in her private practice at the French Firm. As an attorney, she tried multiple civil jury trials. In November of 2010, Judge French was elected as a judge for Jefferson County’s Circuit Court. She presides over civil cases. Judge French is a member of the Birmingham Bar Association, the Magic City Bar Association and the Alabama Lawyers Association (ALA). She is a former president of the ALA. She is currently Chair of the ALA Judicial Council.
Stephen D. Heninger is a founder of the law firm Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC, in Birmingham. Mr. Heninger earned a B.A. degree from the University of Illinois in 1972. After spending two years as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Army, he earned his J.D. degree (Summa Cum Laude) from Cumberland School of Law at Samford University in 1977. He served as a law clerk to Honorable James H. Hancock, District Judge for the Northern District of Alabama before beginning his practice as a trial lawyer specializing in the litigation of personal and commercial tort actions. He has authored “Bad Faith in Alabama: An Infant Tort in Intensive Care” in the Alabama Law Review. He has served as President of the Birmingham Bar Association and the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) Alabama Chapter. He received the ABICLE Walter P. Gewin Award for service to the bar in 1993. He has been listed by “Super Lawyers” as one of the Top 10 Lawyers in Alabama for the past 4 years. He has been listed in the Best Lawyers in America (Woodward & White) since 1991. He has written numerous papers and lectured throughout the country on trial advocacy skills and strategy at venues including: Harvard School of Law, Stanford School of Law; Georgetown School of Law; University of New Mexico School of Law; University of North Carolina School of Law; University of Tennessee School of Law; University of Miami School of Law; University of Alabama School of Law; and, Cumberland School of Law. He is a “master bencher” with the Birmingham Inns of Court, a “fellow” of the Alabama Law Foundation which limits its membership to the top 1% of the State Bar and “Senior Fellow,” Litigation Counsel of America.
Jasper Juliano is a founding member of Parsons, Lee, & Juliano, P.C., in Birmingham. During a career which spans 39 years, Mr. Juliano has tried many cases on behalf of hospitals, physicians, product manufacturers and the construction and insurance industries throughout the state of Alabama. While his main specialty has been civil litigation, through his representation of medical caregivers and institutions and corporate clients, his career has been studded with cases resulting in major legal precedents ranging from the adoption of the Alabama Trade Secret Doctrine to numerous other landmark decisions by the Alabama Supreme Court dealing with medical malpractice, general litigation, civil procedure and intellectual law. Mr. Juliano is rated “AV Preeminent” by Martindale-Hubbell, the highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards. In 1985 he was inducted into the American Board of Trial Advocates which at the time required its inductees to have tried at least 50 jury trials as lead counsel. He was president of ABOTA’s Alabama Chapter in 2005. He has been listed among Alabama’s top attorneys by SuperLawyers for nine consecutive years. He has been named to Best Lawyers in America in the specialty of medical malpractice defense. He is a Fellow of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers and the Alabama Law Foundation. He has been listed by “Super Lawyers” and Best Lawyers in America® for the several years
Walter J. Price, III, is a partner at Huie, Fernambucq & Stewart in Birmingham, Alabama. During his career, Mr.Price has put his specialized medical litigation experience to work to defend hospitals, physicians and nursing homes in medical malpractice actions. In addition to medical professional defense, Mr. Price focuses on pharmaceutical and medical device claims, mass torts and the defense of insurance bad faith cases. Recently, he authored “Anesthesia Litigation – Clinical Basics and Current Liability Issues” for DRI’s May 2017 issue of For The Defense. He currently serves on the Professional Liability Defense Federation Board of Directors and is a frequent contributor to PLDF publications and other industry publications. He is also an active member of the Alabama Defense Lawyers Association, Birmingham Bar Association, Claims and Litigation Management Alliance, Defense Research Institute, International Association of Defense Counsel and Professional Liability Underwriting Society. Mr. Price earned his BS from Auburn University and his JD from The University of Alabama School of Law.
Jennifer “JD” Devereaux Segers is of counsel at Huie, Fernambucq & Stewart in Birmingham, Alabama. Since joining Huie in 1995 after law school, JD has focused her practice on medical malpractice, dental malpractice, long term care and nursing home liability, pharmaceutical liability, professional liability, and professional license defense. She also frequently lectures on medical malpractice and related topics for private insurance firms as well as health care related professional groups and academic groups. JD is a member of the Alabama Defense Lawyers Association, Alabama Nursing Home Defense Lawyers Association, Birmingham Bar Association, Defense Research Institute, and International Association of Defense Counsel. JD earned her BA from Rhodes College (1992) and her JD from The University of Alabama School of Law (1995).
Jason L. Yearout is a partner with Yearout & Traylor, P.C. and graduated from Cumberland School of Law in 1999. While at Cumberland, he was a member of the American Journal of Trial Advocacy and was on Dean's list each year. He also was awarded merits of scholar for booking Property II and Decedents, Estates, and Trusts. He practices in both state and federal court and is licensed in Maryland (1999), Alabama (2000), and Nevada (2001). Prior to starting with Yearout & Traylor, he worked for Senator Harry Reid (D-Nv). Upon returning to Birmingham, he began working with Yearout & Traylor as an associate. He specializes in litigation in a variety of areas, including personal injury, consumer law, mortgage disputes, business litigation, among others. He has tried over 30 jury trials and has obtained millions of dollars in verdicts since 1999.
He is an AV Preeminent® rated lawyer from Martindale-Hubbell®. He has been selected to Alabama Super Lawyer Rising Stars (2011/2012) and a Super Lawyer (2013-2015). He has also been selected as Top 40 under 40 and Top 100 in Alabama by the National Trial Lawyers. He is a member of the state bars of Alabama, Maryland, and Nevada. He is also a member of various organizations devoted to the legal practice including the Alabama Association of Justice, Birmingham Bar Association, and ABOTA (American Board of Trial Advocates). ABOTA is an invitation only organization that requires nomination and election prior to membership. All members must also satisfy a threshold minimum of jury trials or equivalent prior to nomination. ABOTA's mission is to foster ethical and technical standards in advocacy, which enhances effective advocacy as well as preservation of the jury trial.
Tech Tips for Trial Triumph
8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
Yearout & Traylor, P.C.
Are you using the most effective technology to make your arguments stick? Learn all the latest tools for communicating in the courtroom and simplifying issues for medical malpractice juries.
- When to use technology and when to avoid it
- New applications for presenting complex claims
- Tech hardware suggestions for reduced risk of failure
- Top 5 tech errors attorneys make
- Where to find step by step courtroom technology guidance
What’s Your Theme? How to Develop and Deliver A Winning Case Structure
9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.
Stephen D. Heninger
Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC
Successful medical malpractice arguments have a strong underlying theme that pulls the jury to the inevitable conclusion. Learn how to find yours and apply it to your case strategy.
- How to select a theme that works in all phases of your case
- How to support the theme and increase juror acceptance
- Where to find a foundation in jury instructions
- How to integrate proof and argument to create a cohesive thematic experience
E-mail and Refreshment Break
10:30 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.
Defensive Weapons: Keys to Repelling a Medical Malpractice Claim in Alabama
10:45 a.m. to 11:45 a.m.
Parsons, Lee & Juliano, P.C.
Successfully defending a malpractice charge requires a mix of legal, technical, and communication skills — and it all starts long before the case comes to trial. In this session, you’ll get the latest on:
- Investigating the claim
- Attacking the causation proof of the plaintiff’s medical malpractice action
- Special causation defenses
- Winning summary judgment
- Weakening the claim through effective depositions
- Preparing your clients for depositions
LUNCH (on your own)
11:45 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Courtroom Practices Success Tips from an Alabama Judge
1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Judge Elisabeth A. French
Jefferson County Circuit Judge
Where do attorneys fall short when claiming medical malpractice or defending claims? How can you avoid the strategic blunders that have ruined the most promising cases? Learn, from Jefferson County Circuit Judge Elisabeth French, about the hottest issues medical malpractice lawyers currently face in the courtroom. Judge French has presided over civil disputes since 2011 and will share her invaluable insights into what’s working – and what’s not.
Hospital Liability in Alabama: Who Can Be Sued?
2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Walter J. Price, III and Jennifer Devereaux Segers
Huie, Fernambucq & Stewart, LLP
If a client claims to have suffered as the result of errors in a hospital setting, both attorneys representing the client and those representing the hospital must know where the courts will limit liability and hinder the ability to recover damages. In this session, defense and plaintiff’s attorneys will learn how recently decided Alabama cases change the approach to take and when institutions are either vulnerable or immune.
- When is an Alabama hospital liable for employed physicians?
- Recent changes to traditional concepts of liability, and how they change your strategy
- The dangers of reliance on regulatory provisions when establishing non-delegable duty or agency
- Practical hospital liability considerations
- Alleged role of the Joint Commission
AFTERNOON REFRESHMENT AND E-MAIL BREAK
3:00 p.m. to 3:15 p.m.
Keys to Settling Your Medical Malpractice Case: Timing, Offers, Depositions, and More
3:15 p.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Hare Wynn Newell & Newton, LLP
To apply pressure on your opponent to settle the case now, you want to use whatever arrows are in your quiver. Learn from a seasoned Alabama malpractice attorney the best times, and the best ways, to make settlement attractive, and on your terms.
- How to evaluate the case and find settlement opportunities from the first client contact
- How to overcome common settlement obstacles and achieve better client outcomes
- To pro tanto or not pro tanto
Know your Rights… and Wrongs: Ethical Issues Alabama Attorneys Face in Med Mal Cases
4:15 p.m. to 5:15 p.m.
Robert E. Cooper
Stockham, Cooper & Potts, P.C.
Medical malpractice law is fraught with the potential for real or perceived ethical lapses. In this session, you’ll benefit from an in-depth examination of where things can go wrong and ways to protect yourself from even the taint of impropriety.
- What is “competent” representation in medical malpractice cases
- How to meet your HIPAA and confidentiality obligations
- Ways to avoid conflicts of interest
- How to depose experts without become ensnared in ethical traps
- Compensating experts within accepted ethical guidelines
- How to use technology ethically in medical malpractice cases
Location & Conference Details
Friday, April 27, 2018
$337 for main event
$257 for additional attendees from the same firm
$147 for materials
Registration begins at 8:00 a.m. The conference begins at 8:30 a.m. and concludes at 5:15 p.m.
(There will be morning and afternoon breaks, and attendees will have 1 hour and 15 minutes for lunch on their own.)