Recent Posts

December 2, 2022

Abbott, Smith, and Agee Win Summary Judgment in Louisiana Unfair Trade Practices Act Case

FormanWatkins attorneys Charles Abbott, Peyton Smith, and Chandler Agee won summary judgment in a Louisiana Unfair Trade Practices Act (“LUPTA”) case filed in Louisiana state court.  The case was filed in October of 2020 by a plaintiff claiming a forest products client violated the LUTPA in connection with a sand and gravel mining lease on property owned by the client.  The FormanWatkins team exposed the baseless nature of the claims through multiple, extensive depositions, principally conducted by Mr. Smith, and then filed a detailed motion for summary judgment, providing the necessary evidence to disprove the plaintiff’s allegations.  On November 22, 2022, Mr. Abbott argued the motion before the state court judge, who ruled from the bench, granting the motion and dismissing all of plaintiff’s claims against the client with prejudice.

December 1, 2022

FormanWatkins Partners Named to New Orleans Magazine 2022 Top Lawyers List

Forman Watkins & Krutz LLP is proud to announce that Charles Abbott, Michael Abraham, Melissa Fuller, Tim Gray and Byron Kitchens were selected to the 2022 Top Lawyers list by New Orleans Magazine. New Orleans Magazine presents the Top Lawyers list annually, and this year’s list was prepared by Detroit-based Professional Research Services.  Honorees were selected via a voting system, in which voting was open to all licensed attorneys in New Orleans.  The voters were asked which attorney, other than themselves, they would recommend in the New Orleans area, and each attorney was allowed to recommend up to three colleagues in each given legal specialty.  Once the online nominations were complete, each nominee was carefully evaluated on the basis of the survey results, the legitimacy of their license, and their current standing with the State Bar Association of Louisiana.  Attorneys who received the highest number of votes in each specialty are reflected in the Top Lawyers list.

November 29, 2022

23 FormanWatkins Attorneys Named 2022 Mid-South Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

Forman Watkins & Krutz LLP  is once again represented in the latest edition of Super Lawyers, the prominent legal ranking published by Thomson Reuters, with 23 attorneys earning distinctions on the 2022 Mid-South Super Lawyers and Rising Stars lists. Super Lawyers recognizes outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement, with no more than five percent of the lawyers in the state receiving the honor. The patented selection process includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations to select lawyers across all 50 states and Washington, D.C. Congratulations to the following attorneys on their selection to this year’s lists: 2022 Mid-South Super Lawyers: Tanya Ellis, Win Gault,  Nick Giallourakis, Brian Hannula, Fred Krutz**, Mitch McGuffey, Alison McMinn, Joshua Metcalf, Jennifer Studebaker, Trey Watkins*, and WG Watkins** 2022 Mid-South Rising Stars: Mary Clift Abdalla, Patrick Fields, Joel Fyke, Courtney Hunt, Ruth Maron Huskey, Sampada Kapoor, Chelsea Lewis, Vernon McFarland, Daniel Roberts, Peyton Smith, Andrew Stubbs, and Caroline Upchurch **Also named to the Top 50 in Mississippi list *Selected as a Super Lawyer for 10 years

October 6, 2022

FormanWatkins Attorneys Featured at National Asbestos Litigation Conference

Malissa Wilson, a Partner in the FormanWatkins Jackson office, and Margaret McLaughlin, an Associate in the firm’s New Orleans office, were featured speakers at Perrin Conferences’ National Asbestos Litigation Conference on Sept. 14-15 in Charleston, South Carolina.  Malissa served as a featured panelist during the Women’s Symposium Lunch, where she gave thoughtful insights to fellow women and leaders in the industry on work-life integration in the post-Covid era, with topics including effective time management, mentoring the next generation, and balancing professional and personal life. Margaret participated in the Non-Traditional Jurisdictions and Exposures panel and dived into which non-traditional jurisdictions are experiencing increased filings, recent cases with non-traditional exposures, a-typical job sites and emerging areas of asbestos exposures. The conference program included both national and jurisdictional asbestos litigation updates and offered attendees the opportunity to attend numerous informative and dynamic panel discussions, presentations, and demonstrations on a variety of topics related to asbestos litigation. Speakers and attendees included many of the nation’s premiere plaintiff and defense attorneys, judges, and insurance professionals.  

October 3, 2022

FormanWatkins Expands

Forman Watkins & Krutz LLP significantly expands in Texas with a new office in Beaumont, and an addition to its Houston and New Orleans offices. Joining FormanWatkins and establishing the Beaumont office are David Ledyard, Michael Baker and Vickie Thompson. Thompson, who is licensed in Louisiana and Illinois, will practice out of the firm’s New Orleans office as well.  Additionally, K.B. Battaglini joins the firm’s Houston office. All previously practiced with Strong Pipkin Bissell & Ledyard, LLP and have decades of experience representing regional and national clients in the energy, rail, chemical and securities industries. Founded in Jackson, Mississippi, FormanWatkins opened its Houston office in 2003 and a New Orleans office in 2002. Along with firm offices in New Jersey and Detroit, the addition of Beaumont strengthens the firm’s toxic tort litigation practice and strategically extends its ability to meet the needs of clients nationally and throughout the Gulf South region. “The firm could not be more pleased to deepen our Texas and Louisiana roots and gain a group of attorneys with decades of trial experience,” said New Orleans Partner Tim Gray. “In addition to anticipated work for their existing clients, David, Michael, Vickie and K.B. will also provide tremendous trial depth for firm clients in Texas, Louisiana and nationwide.” Having served as counsel for major oil and chemical companies, Mr. Baker’s practice focuses on toxic tort, mass tort, environmental, products liability, and premises liability litigation. Mr. Battaglini has expertise in commercial, securities, energy, environmental, natural resources, media and entertainment […]

September 16, 2022

Sonya Dickson Joins the Firm as an Associate

Forman, Watkins & Krutz is pleased to welcome Sonya Dickson to the firm’s Jackson office. Sonya joins the firm as an Associate. Prior to joining FormanWatkins, Sonya served as a judicial clerk for the Honorable Kristi H. Johnson of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi. She earned her J.D., summa cum laude, from Mississippi College School of Law in 2021 and her B.S. in Psychology, summa cum laude, from Mississippi College in 2019.

September 12, 2022

FormanWatkins Co-Hosts Hinds County Family Law Clinic

FormanWatkins attorneys and summer associates from the Jackson office were among those who volunteered July 29,2022, at the Hinds County Family Law Clinic, a pro se legal clinic held at the Hinds County Chancery Courthouse. The clinic assisted individuals with a variety of legal matters, including irreconcilable differences divorces, uncontested guardianships, birth certificate corrections, and name changes. The clinic was hosted by the Fifth Chancery District (Hinds County Chancery Court), Jackson Public Schools, the Mississippi Volunteer Lawyers Project, Mission First, the Capital Area Bar Association, and Forman Watkins & Krutz. Our participating team included Mary Clift Abdalla, Mimi Arthur, Jean Folsom, Ruth Huskey, Sampada Kapoor, and summer associates, Kelsi Baldwin (Mississippi College School of Law, May 2023), Merritt Baria (University of Mississippi School of Law, May 2024), Keri Herrington (Mississippi College School of Law, May 2024), Teresa Jones (University of Mississippi School of Law, May 2023) and Cailin Sims (Mississippi College School of Law, May 2024).

August 18, 2022

FormanWatkins Attorneys Included in 2023 Best Lawyers® List

FormanWatkins is pleased to announce that 24 attorneys have been named to The Best Lawyers in America© list for 2023. FormanWatkins Partner Malissa Wilson was named a “Lawyer of the Year” for Jackson, Miss., in Labor and Employment litigation. Those named “Lawyers of the Year” received the highest overall peer-feedback in the listed practice area and geographic region. Only one attorney is recognized as the “Lawyer of the Year” for each specialty and location. In addition, 15 FormanWatkins attorneys were named to The Best Lawyers in America: “Ones to Watch”  list, a recognition of attorneys who are on the rise, excelling in their career. Established in 1983, Best Lawyers® has earned the respect of the profession, the media and the public as the most reliable, unbiased source of legal referrals. For the 2023 edition of The Best Lawyers in America, more than 12.2 million votes were analyzed to identify the top legal talent, as identified by their peers. Forman Watkins & Krutz LLP would like to congratulate the following attorneys: 2023 Best Lawyers in America Charles H. Abbott  Commercial Litigation Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants Mary Clift Abdalla  Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants Product Liability Litigation – Defendants Michael H. Abraham Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants Product Liability Litigation – Defendants Pete F. Andarsio  Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants Mary R. Arthur Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants James L. Banks Commercial […]

August 16, 2022

FormanWatkins Hosts Diversity Pipeline Program Bootcamp

FormanWatkins recently concluded its Diversity Pipeline Program’s pre-law school bootcamp. Students from Tougaloo College, an historically black college located in Jackson, Mississippi, participated in an all-day educational event featuring a Q&A panel discussion with the firm’s summer clerks on what to expect the first year in law school; a seminar taught by FWK associates, Katherine Pettis and Chandler C. Agee, on case briefing and outlining; and, a mock law school lecture by University of Mississippi School of Law Professor Larry J. Pittman. In addition to the bootcamp, the students spent their spring break at the firm participating in a week-long series of activities that included a civil litigation legal education seminar, attorney shadowing opportunities and panel discussions with outside counsel. In partnership with the pre-law society at Tougaloo College, the FWK Pipeline Program is a firm diversity initiative to recruit stellar students attending historically black colleges and universities with an interest to practice law. All program participants are set to attend law school in the fall on full scholarships. Participants included: Precious Thompson, George Washington University Law School Amber Magee, Suffolk University Law School Clifford Benton, Jr., Suffolk University Law School Pierrerasha Goodwin, University of Alabama Law School Octavius Henderson, Vermont Law School Marvin Dale, Jr., Washburn University School of Law Samuel Patterson, III, Drake University Law School Kevana Funches, Columbia University School of Professional Studies

August 9, 2022

Charles Abbott Named Fellow of Litigation Counsel of America

Forman Watkins & Krutz New Orleans partner, Charles Abbott, has been selected as a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America (LCA). The Litigation Counsel of America is a trial lawyer honorary society composed of less than one-half of one percent of American lawyers. Fellowship in the LCA is highly selective and by invitation only. Fellows are selected based upon excellence and accomplishment in litigation, both at the trial and appellate levels, and superior ethical reputation. Abbott, licensed in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas, has a very diverse litigation practice. He routinely is retained in significant, high-dollar commercial, contractual, tort, admiralty/maritime, products liability, construction, and toxic tort cases pending in both federal and state courts. In addition, Charles serves as national coordinating counsel on behalf of a Fortune 100 client and its subsidiaries in connection with its toxic tort litigation. Abbott is also a frequent guest lecturer at the Paul M. Hebert Law Center at Louisiana State University teaching toxic tort classes consisting of second- and third-year law students, an assistant bar examiner for the Committee on Bar Admissions of the Supreme Court of Louisiana, and a member of the board of directors for the Brain Injury Association of Louisiana.