Christian & Small LLP

Birmingham Office

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This content is provided by Christian & Small LLP.

Managing Partner: Deborah Alley Smith
Number of attorneys:

Firm Overview:
Christian & Small is a multi-disciplinary regional law firm with a global perspective. The firm’s attorneys serve individuals and regional, national and international companies, as well as emerging businesses. The firm represent clients throughout Alabama, Mississippi, and in several other Southeastern states, and members of the firm serve as national coordinating counsel, regional counsel and statewide counsel for clients in various enterprises. Christian & Small has proven itself a leader among Alabama-based firms, offering the high-quality legal representation expected from larger firms and the client-focused attention that distinguishes the best boutiques. Leveraging technology allows the firm to provide the exceptional service and results that its clients have come to expect, while keeping costs low. The firm’s corporate social responsibility program is focused on education, and diversity is one of the firm’s core values.

Main Areas of Practice:
Business & Commercial Litigation:
■ Defended a software company against claims for theft of trade secrets and for inducing a competitor’s chief information officer to breach a covenant not to compete. Following an adverse verdict, the firm obtained a reversal and ultimately a complete dismissal for the client

Class Action & Complex Litigation:
■ Nationwide representation of defendants in over 250 lawsuits filed throughout the US arising from injuries allegedly sustained by consumers of a nutritional supplement recalled by the FDA
■ Defended leading investment bank in rate payer class action arising from bond defaults and bankruptcy of Jefferson County, Alabama
■ Represented a major financial services provider in a series of litigation and regulatory matters relating to a state retirement plan. Negotiated settlements of the class action, regulatory proceedings and all related civil litigation, and obtained dismissal of a related derivative suit and putative class action
■ Achieved a total victory for the domestic affiliates of one of the world’s largest banks, in a nationwide class action certified in the only multidistrict litigation case ever taken to trial in Alabama. The firm tried the case and won it in the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals while all other defendants in the financial lending business paid very large sums to settle the claims

Product Liability:
■ Defended the manufacturer of a zero-turn riding mower in a wrongful death suit. The case was tried for three weeks to a defense verdict, which was affirmed on appeal
■ Obtained summary judgment in federal court in favor of an international manufacturer of a steel fabricating system on multi-million dollar property damage claims arising out of a massive molten steel spill
■ Obtained defense verdict in state court wrongful death case involving design defect and failure to warn claims against foreign agricultural tractor manufacturer

Cyber & Data Breach Liability:
■ Representing four hospitals and two practice groups in a class action alleging a data breach of patient information, and acting as local counsel for all other hospital defendants with related cases consolidated through an MDL proceeding

Health Care:
■ Representing hospitals, academic medical centers, physician practice groups and individual physicians in a variety of health care matters — from physician/hospital employment relationships to Certificate of Need proceedings to Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement, fraud and abuse issues, and false claims actions

Labor & Employment:
■ Represented five employers in separate FLSA collective actions with potential class size ranging from 100 to 600 members, negotiating minimal settlements in each action
■ Served as Alabama counsel for a national trucking company fighting a nationwide Teamsters strike

Professional Liability & Medical Malpractice:
■ Obtained a defense verdict in a medical malpractice case after a six-day trial where the defense conceded that the plaintiff was injured by the procedure, but contested that there was a breach of the standard of care and the extent of the injury
■ Obtained a unanimous jury verdict in favor of a general surgeon in a case where the plaintiff claimed in excess of $400,000 in past medical expenses and $350,000 in lost wages due to permanent disability

■ Achieved a complete victory for a major pharmaceutical company in the first of 73 ‘Average Wholesale Pricing’ cases filed by Alabama’s Attorney General. The Alabama Supreme Court reversed a multi-million dollar jury verdict for the State and rendered judgment in their client’s favor
■ Won an appeal reversing an attorney fee award of approximately $1.1 million based on an indemnity agreement

Bankruptcy & Creditors’ Rights:
■ Lead counsel for the largest unsecured creditor of a ship yard in the commencement of a contested involuntary bankruptcy. The firm forced a sale of corporate assets, obtained an allowed claim in excess of $40 million, and negotiated favorable concessions that resulted in the confirmation of a consensual plan
■ Served as part of the litigation team that represented the bankruptcy trustee of Just for Feet in the aggressive pursuit of accounting malpractice and corporate governance claims
■ Counsel for the unsecured creditors’ committee of Walter Energy, which at the time was the largest bankruptcy of a coal company in the US