Tort Law Conference for Alabama Attorneys - Materials Only
Held in Hoover on Thursday & Friday, September 13-14, 2018
Order your materials from this leading Alabama learning event on complex and significant tort decisions, relevant laws, and emerging trends.
This conference features Chief Magistrate Judge John E. Ott and a faculty of leading Alabama tort law attorneys discussing the latest changes and decisions of critical interest to your successful practice.
Conference highlights include:
- Identifying the interference case – discovery strategies, trial tactics, damages
- Communication strategies—setting the tone with adjusters
- Obtaining and using cell phone records—how to obtain the information in discovery, how to get the information into evidence, and how to use experts
- Spotting product liability claims
- Discovery disputes
- Practical tips on resolving discovery disputes
- Update on evidence issues—amendments, case law, and practical tips
- Update on recent significant cases on tort law
- Pitfalls of settling – subrogation, liens
- Tips for practicing in federal court
- Ethical dilemmas
Rob Arnwine | Carr Allison, Birmingham
Brandon Bass | The Law Offices of John Day PC, Brentwood
Nancy Eady | Morris, Haynes, Wheeles, Knowles, & Nelson, Birmingham
Chris Glover | Beasley Allen Law Firm, Montgomery
Robert L. Gorham | Gorham & Associates, LLC, Birmingham
Stephen Heninger | Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC, Birmingham
Jeremiah Hodges | Hodges Trial Lawyers, P.C., Huntsville
Ben Locklar | Beasley Allen Law Firm, Montgomery
Terry McCarthy | Lightfoot Franklin White LLC, Birmingham
Judge John E. Ott | United States District Court for the Northern District of Alabama, Birmingham
Scott Salter | Starnes Davis Florie, LLP, Birmingham
Kim White | Case-Metrix, Atlanta
Your Distinguished Faculty
Rob Arnwine serves as Counsel in Carr Allison’s Birmingham office. He has a general defense practice with special emphasis on trucking litigation. An experienced trial attorney in both state and federal court, he has litigated a broad range of cases including wrongful death, professional liability, termite damage, premises liability, and products liability. Mr. Arnwine has also drafted appeals to the Alabama Supreme Court and the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals.
Brandon Bass was named Tennessee Trial Lawyer of the Year for 2017 by the Tennessee Trial Lawyers’ Association. He has previously been selected by Best Lawyers in America for plaintiffs’ personal injury litigation, and as a top rated personal injury lawyer by Super Lawyers.
Brandon serves on the Board of Governors for the Tennessee Trial Lawyers Association. He chaired the organization’s Amicus Curiae Committee, drafting legal arguments on appellate issues important to injury victims, and has served on its Membership, Legislative, and Publications Committees. He is an active member of the American Association for Justice and the Tennessee Bar Association, having worked on the Board of Governors for both groups’ New Lawyers Divisions.
Nancy Eady is a partner at Morris, Haynes, Wheeles, Knowles & Nelson in Alabama. She has been with the firm since 1991 and practices out of the Alexander City office. Ms. Eady heads the Legal Research Department of the firm, and she has successfully defended many of the verdicts and rulings obtained at trial by other attorneys in the firm. She graduated with highest honors from Auburn University and then went on to Montgomery’s Jones School of Law where she earned the James L. Carter Scholarship Award, given to the graduating student with the highest grade point. Ms. Eady is an active member of the Alabama State Bar and serves on the Executive Committee of the Alabama Association for Justice.
Chris Glover, with the Beasley Allen Law Firm in Montgomery, has dedicated his practice to protecting the rights of survivors of catastrophic personal injury and victims of wrongful death. He has represented injured individuals and their families in a wide range of serious injury and death claims, including those that were the result of defective products; car, commercial truck and workplace accidents; and aviation accidents. He has litigated numerous cases that have resulted in verdicts or settlements in excess of $1 million. He was lead counsel on a $4.7 million verdict against seatbelt manufacturer Key Safety Systems.
Robert L. Gorham is the managing member of Gorham & Associates, LLC, in Birmingham, Alabama. Mr. Gorham focuses his practice primarily on issues involving trucking and automobile wreck litigation. He graduated with his B.A. degree from the University of Tennessee and earned his J.D. degree from the University of Tennessee College of Law.
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.
Jeremiah Hodges is the principle of Hodges Trial Lawyers, P.C. in Huntsville and he handles personal injury lawsuits and civil litigation. He has tried and won lawsuits on both the plaintiff and the defense side. He is admitted to practice in Alabama and Tennessee. Jeremiah served as the Chair of the Emerging Leaders for the Alabama Association for Justice, President of the Huntsville Young Lawyers, and Membership Chair of the Huntsville Madison County Bar Association. From 2011 until the present year, he was chosen as a Super Lawyers® Rising Star. He received the AVVO.com rating of Superb with a score of 10.0 out of 10.0. He has been selected by the National Trial Lawyers and Society of Legal Advocates as one of the top 40 lawyers in Alabama. Jeremiah has also been selected as of the Alabama’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators.
Ben Locklar practices as a member of Beasley Allen Law Firm’s Personal Injury and Products Liability Section. A Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Rated attorney, Mr. Locklar has served in leadership roles on a variety of boards, including the editorial board for The Docket, a publication of the Montgomery County Bar Association, and the board of trustees of the Montgomery County Association for Justice. He is a former member of the Paralegal Studies/Legal Studies Advisory Committee for South University. Mr. Locklar has been selected to the 2017 and 2018 Best Lawyers in America lists. After working three years as a police officer with the Montgomery Police Department, Mr. Locklar completed his undergraduate degree at Auburn University at Montgomery and later attended law school at Cumberland School of Law.
Terry McCarthy joined Lightfoot Franklin White LLC in Birmingham in 1999 after graduating first in his class at the University of Alabama School of Law, and he quickly earned a reputation for being "the Dean of Evidence." After working for two years in law school as a research assistant for Dean Charles Gamble, the "Godfather" of Alabama evidence, Mr. McCarthy quickly put this knowledge to use in the courtroom. He has not only been involved as counsel of record in numerous arbitrations, jury trials, and bench trials within Alabama, but he has also served as lead counsel in various matters in more than 20 states throughout the country. His accomplishments have been recognized in various ways, such as an AV Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell and being listed multiple times in the Alabama edition of Super Lawyers for civil litigation defense. He has taught Evidence courses at Birmingham School of Law (where he has been selected by the students as Professor of the Year on several occasions), the University of Alabama School of Law, and Cumberland School of Law. He was appointed by the Alabama Supreme Court to serve on the Advisory Committee to the Alabama Rules of Evidence, in which he serves as co-chair of the sub-committee on Hearsay.
|Chief Magistrate Judge John E. Ott was appointed to the Court in 1998. He now serves as the Chief Magistrate Judge of the Court. He has presided as a trial judge in over fifty criminal or civil cases in a variety of subject areas, including employment discrimination, civil rights, contract disputes, antitrust, negligence, and federal misdemeanor cases. He has also served as a settlement judge or mediator in over 500 cases in nearly every type of federal litigation. Prior to his appointment, Judge Ott served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Northern District of Alabama for fifteen years. He began as a prosecutor in the criminal division of the Office and held the positions of Deputy Chief and Chief of the Criminal Division and Executive Assistant United States Attorney with oversight responsibility for litigation. Prior to his service with the United States Attorney, he was a law clerk for the United States Magistrates for the Northern District of Alabama. Judge Ott serves on the adjunct faculty at Cumberland School of Law, teaching trial advocacy. He has also been an adjunct faculty member at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, teaching courses in trial techniques and advocacy, criminal evidence, e-discovery and social media, and negotiation and mediation.|
Scott M. Salter is a partner in the Birmingham-based law firm of Starnes Davis Florie LLP. He primarily practices in the areas of direct representation of insurance companies and medical malpractice defense. He has worked for insurance companies and private corporations in insurance matters, providing coverage opinions, as well as prosecuting declaratory judgment actions and defending breach of contract, bad faith, and fraud suits. In the area of medical malpractice defense, Mr. Salter defends doctors, hospitals, and other healthcare professionals. He has also handled cases in other areas, including commercial litigation and general litigation. Mr. Salter has tried almost 50 complex cases to a jury verdict. He is the current chair of the Healthcare Section of the FDCC. He is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates and is currently the Alabama representative to the national board of ABOTA.
Kim White, Prior to co-founding CaseMetrix, www.case-metrix.com, Kimberly White had 27 years’ experience as a Litigation Paralegal. After earning a degree in Paralegal Studies in 1982, she worked at an insurance defense firm in North Carolina before relocating to Atlanta in 1984. She began working at an Atlanta insurance defense firm, then known as Fain, Gorby, Reeves & Moraitakis, in 1984, and remained with that firm until 1994. At that point, she began a 15-year freelance career in which she assisted many prominent plaintiff and defense firms in metro Atlanta. Her specialties have included motor vehicle, trucking, premises liability, products liability, medical malpractice and pharmacy malpractice. She co-founded CaseMetrix, a settlement & verdict database, in 2009. That company has since expanded throughout the Southeastern US and is utilized by both plaintiff & defense firms. Kimberly has lectured extensively to attorneys, paralegals and insurers sharing her unique perspective with both sides of the Bar.
DAY 1 — Thursday, September 13
Effectively Communicating with Adjusters: Plaintiff & Defense Perspectives
8:30 A.M. TO 9:30 A.M.
For Plaintiff’s Counsel
- Setting the tone with a customized demand letter
- Dealing with inconsistencies in the Complaint, medical bills, discovery responses & depo testimony
- Focusing on objective value drivers
- Establishing credibility
- Acknowledging deficits while focusing on strengths
- Playing the venue game
- Maximizing egregious citations
For Defense Counsel
- Setting initial reserves
- Approaching insurer’s form reports differently
- Planning an effective deposition
- Implementing post-mediation strategies
- Establishing value drivers
- Avoiding the “call of shame” while obtaining additional authority
- Effectively presenting a settlement offer
The Last Lap - Preparing for Trial
9:30 A.M. TO 10:30 A.M.
The Law Offices of John Day PC
- Using project management techniques for your final trial preparation
- Managing the weeks and months before trial
- Organizing evidence to be simple and effective
10:30 A.M. TO 10:45 A.M.
Tort Law Update
10:45 A.M. TO 11:45 P.M.
Starnes Davis Florie LLP
Mr. Salter will review recent significant cases from the Supreme Court of Alabama and the Alabama Court of Civil Appeals that affect the practice of Alabama tort lawyers. He will give each case’s holding and explain its significance.
11:45 P.M. TO 1:00 P.M.
(ON YOUR OWN)
Discovery Disputes in Tort Cases
1:00 P.M. to 2:00 P.M.
Hodges Trial Lawyers, P.C.
- Preparing and Winning Discovery Motions
- Pushing Back Against Overly-Broad or Unreasonable Requests
- Sampling Practices and Discovery About Discovery
- Best Practices for Resolving Discovery Disputes with Opposing Counsel
- When You Need to Take Your Discovery Dispute to the Judge
- When to Make a Motion to Compel
Pitfalls of a Settlement
2:00 P.M. to 3:00 P.M.
Beasley Allen Law Firm
This seminar will discuss the pitfalls of settling a tort case from the plaintiff's and defendant's perspectives.
3:00 P.M. TO 3:15 P.M
Keeping Evidence Out (Pre and Post Trial)
3:15 P.M. to 4:15 P.M.
Robert L. Gorham
Gorham & Associates, LLC
Practical Application of the "Big Six" to Real-World Courtroom Events
- Hearsay Objections
- Motion in Limine, Motion to Exclude and Motion to Strike
- Motions for Sanctions
- Curtailing Speaking Objection
- Use of the Sidebar Conference
- Jury Instructions After the Objection
- Preserving Evidentiary Issues for Appeal
- Timing and Frequency of Objections
- Specificity of Objections
- Motions in Limine
- Offers of Proof
DAY 2 — Friday, September 14
How to Spot a Product Liability Claim
8:30 A.M. TO 9:30 A.M.
Beasley Allen Law Firm
Mr. Glover has tried product liability claims throughout his career. These cases can be extremely complex and tedious, so it is important to evaluate them thoroughly and correctly. Good first questions for attorneys to keep in mind when evaluating a potential product liability case include:
- Whether or not the client has a catastrophic injury,
- Whether the client or attorney has the product accused of causing the injury in question available for examination, and
- Whether or not the claim is within the statute of limitations and statute of repose.
Commercial Litigation for Interference with Contract
9:30 A.M. TO 10:30 A.M.
Stephen D. Heninger
Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC
- Identifying the interference case
- Discovery strategies
- Trial tactics for establishing the case and damages
10:30 A.M. TO 10:45 A.M.
10:45 A.M. TO 11:45 A.M.
Lightfoot, Franklin & White
- Practical tips on evidence issues that frequently arise at trial
- An update on recent evidence case law
11:45 P.M. TO 1:00 P.M.
(ON YOUR OWN)
Cellular Information: Obtaining and Admitting in Litigation
1:00 P.M. to 2:00 P.M.
- The type of cellular information available
- How to obtain the information in discovery
- How to get the information into evidence
- Use of experts
Legal Ethics Dilemmas
2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Nancy L. Eady
Morris, Haynes, Wheeles, Knowles & Nelson
- Conflicts of Interest Predicaments
- Insurance Defense Counsel Relationship With the Insured and Insurer
- Ethical Problems in Litigation and Settlements
- Attorney Fees and Client Trust Accounts
- Challenges of Preserving Client Confidentiality
- Legal Marketing and Advertising
3:00 P.M. TO 3:15 P.M.
Tips for Practicing in Federal Court
3:15 P.M. TO 4:15 P.M.
Judge John E. Ott
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama
Chief Magistrate Judge Ott offers tips for tort attorneys when trying their cases in federal court.