Maynard Cooper's Litigation Group has litigated a wide variety of federal and state cases involving complex litigation. We define “complex litigation” as a lawsuit that presents unusual challenges because of the nature of the underlying facts, the quantity or nature of documentation at issue, the number of parties, or the pendency of other related actions. When clients are involved in complex litigation, the firm’s attorneys work to solve problems creatively in ways that are consistent with the strategic goals of the client.
The firm has defended clients in complex litigation in a wide variety of areas including the following:
- intellectual property
- mass tort
- environmental torts
- business torts
- product liability
- opt-out litigation following class action settlements
- fiduciary breach claims against healthcare plans and pension funds
- healthcare payer provider disputes
Maynard Cooper routinely defends local and national clients who are involved in cases that are consolidated with multi-district actions under the supervision of the Judicial Panel on Multi-District Litigation. The firm has prevailed in a significant number of complex cases by obtaining defense verdicts at trial, summary judgment, early dismissals or favorable settlements. We have also obtained a number of favorable decisions in the complex litigation area from the Alabama Supreme Court and the Eleventh Circuit. The sheer size of complex litigation is often daunting to a client. Clients often worry about how much it will cost them to litigate such cases. The firm’s overall goal for such clients is to get these cases dismissed as early as possible with as little money spent as possible. Our attorneys have successfully achieved such early dismissals in numerous cases. If a case does go to trial, the firm will try it in any venue, dangerous or not. The firm has received defense verdicts in venues where other law firms might have advised the client to settle based on the venue alone. There are instances, however, where settlement is the right solution for a client. For such cases, our lawyers work to posture the case with the goal of achieving as favorable of a settlement as is possible.
Representative Complex Litigation Defense Cases
Maynard Cooper has been successful in a wide variety of court matters. Representative cases include:
- Defended The Dow Chemical Company in products liability claims by some 1500 plaintiffs in consolidated mass tort actions in Alabama and West Virginia involving underground coal miners who were allegedly exposed to methylene diisocyanate while applying a product used for consolidation of coal mine roofs in longwall mining. This matter was ultimately settled after a lengthy jury selection process (from a venire of over 400 prospective jurors), after several weeks of motions in limine, and on the eve of opening statements to the empaneled jury.
- Defended a national video retailer in a commercial dispute brought by a purported franchisee in the United States District Court, Houston, Texas, seeking damages in excess of $80 million dollars. We obtained summary judgment on behalf of our client, dismissing all claims, and successfully upheld the dismissal before the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
- Tried and obtained a defense verdict in 2004 for a high-end exercise equipment manufacturer, in an antitrust case alleging price-fixing and other claims brought by the manufacturer’s terminated dealer. The jury trial was in the United States District Court, Northern District of Alabama.
- Received defense verdicts in a case where thirty-six employees sued an aviation maintenance company alleging a racially hostile work environment.
- Previously defended a case in Bessemer, Alabama for a major mining company, with 187 families as plaintiffs, all claiming coal dust settled on their properties from the coal preparation facility nearby. After a "bellwether" trial involving four families of plaintiffs, the jury returned verdicts for the defendants. The circuit court judge later set aside the verdicts, and the case ultimately favorably settled.
- Defended a major New York investment banking firm in a three-week jury trial in Montgomery, Alabama, relating to the WorldCom litigation. The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg covered the trial. Co-defendants in the case settled for over $100 million. Maynard Cooper hung the jury 10-3 in favor of our client.
- Defended a Fortune-500 chemical company in a mass-tort action pending in Bessemer, Alabama. The case was consolidated with 1,674 plaintiffs, all coal miners, all of whom claim exposure to the isocyanate component of the two-part system to create polyurethane, which holds the mine roof up.
- Defended a mining company and its managers in several actions arising from a mine explosion with 13 fatalities, achieving a successful settlement of those civil cases.
- Favorably resolved a multiple plaintiff case for a major gas company in which the plaintiffs alleged personal injuries and nuisance from a natural gas compressor station.