Mike has earned the name “trial lawyer” through his years of extraordinary diversity in trial practice on both sides of the bar, representing plaintiffs and defendants in cases involving a broad range of subjects. His trial experience includes a wide variety of product defect cases, Civil Rights, Equal Protection and Due Process claims on behalf of incarcerated persons, quasi-criminal claims brought in the form of civil actions on behalf of aggrieved persons for felony interference with child custody, civil action claims involving life insurance proceeds, commercial cases involving complex business transactions, actions involving construction of large ocean going vessels, and many other subject areas. Mike’s national reputation is based upon his success in the courtroom and in the development and implementation of defense strategies for companies in asbestos litigation.
Mike has defended several companies in asbestos litigation and has acted in the capacity of national trial counsel in defending more than one such defendant. In doing so, he has had trial supervisory responsibility for more than 100,000 cases and has tried cases involving hundreds of plaintiffs and lasting as long as seven months. Mike is licensed to practice in the courts of Georgia, Florida, Texas, and the District of Columbia. He has acted as lead counsel in cases in at least ten states. He has had less direct trial responsibility in cases in at least 30 states. His success in trial and popularity with the courts and with juries is widely recognized by those who have tried cases with him.
Mike’s approach to fact and expert witness development in concert with themes developed for the specific client is a proven defense development strategy that stands the test of time in mass tort litigation. He has acted as a chief strategist and counselor for defendants in mass tort litigation and, as such, has structured defense strategies and developed witnesses in many areas of medical science, public health, epidemiology, occupational medicine, engineering, industrial hygiene, human factors engineering and warnings, industrial history, government contracting, metallurgy, physics and other areas.
As with all complex tort issues, Mike views the asbestos problem as one requiring a constant infusion of new ideas applied within the context of experience gained in the many years of long-lived litigation. He obtains the insight of bright young minds in the legal and scientific community while avoiding many of the pitfalls of original thinking applied without experience. He searches for ways of applying recent legal developments and precedents to a very mature litigation. The result is an effective response to the formulaic approach to the litigation taken by many of the plaintiffs’ bar. Mike has obtained defense verdicts in single cases and in consolidated trial groups. He has obtained defense verdicts in mesothelioma trials in the particularly significant jurisdictions of California, Maryland and Texas.
- Juris Doctor, The University of Georgia, 1984, cum laude
- Bachelor of Arts, Georgia Southwestern University, 1981, summa cum laude
- Presidio of Monterey, Defense Language Institute, Turkish, 1975, with highest honors
- State Bar of Florida
- State Bar of Georgia
- State Bar of Texas
- District of Columbia