In-House Counsel Finding Sanctuary
a concentrated curriculum for in-house counsel managing litigation
presented by
the NETWORK of TRIAL LAW FIRMS
- the TRIAL NETWORK -

The Sanctuary Resort - Kiawah Island, SC
October 27-30, 2016


CLE Program Agenda

Friday, October 28

9:00a - 9:05a
Opening Statement by the Network Chair
Lee Hollis -- Lightfoot Franklin & White (Birmingham, AL)
 

9:05a - 9:10a
Welcome From The Seminar Chairs
Jerry Glas -- Deutsch Kerrigan (New Orleans, LA)
Nikki Nesbitt -- Goodell DeVries (Baltimore, MD)
Amy Sorenson -- Snell & Wilmer (Salt Lake City, UT)
Jessie Zeigler -- Bass Berry & Sims (Nashville, TN)

 

9:10a - 9:30a
ETHICAL CONSIDERATIONS FOR LITIGATORS AND TRIAL ATTORNEYS
Joe Ortego -- Nixon Peabody (New York, NY)
Walking the line between zealous advocacy and punishable misconduct can present challenges for in-house and outside counsel. For instances, may you pay fact witnesses?, what may you discuss during witness preparation?, may you prevent a company witness from lying?, may you talk to a witness during a break in testimony?, may an in-house lawyer testify? Trial lawyer Joe Ortego gives us some examples of close ethical issues and what one may learn from the mistakes of others.

9:30a - 9:50a
ARE TRIAL LAWYERS FUNGIBLE?
John Fitzpatrick -- Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell (Denver, CO)
Here’s a typical situation: Your adversary makes unreasonably high demands and refuses to settle a catastrophic injury, high exposure case thereby putting your company and your career on the line as she marches to verdict in a judicial hellhole. Are you really selecting trial counsel when you merely accept the next one up in the queue at your regular law firm? Is that a wannabe trial lawyer “motion-practice litigator” they’ve given you, someone who hasn’t been to verdict in a decade, and is he miraculously going to develop trial chops in time to save your company? Are you getting the protection you need from a professional who's been through firestorms before? Trial lawyer John Fitzpatrick makes the case for the proposition that all trial lawyers were not created equal.

9:50a - 10:10a
WHOSE LAW IS IT ANYWAY?
David Suchar -- Maslon (Minneapolis, MN)
Trial lawyer David Suchar, provides a primer on choice of law arguments which come up thousands of times each year, and how they can change the result in your case. David will discuss the States that preclude contracts from selecting foreign law, common approaches to resolving choice of law questions, why it pays to be the plaintiff, when choose of law can be determinative, introduce the concept of “Depeçage” and more.

10:10a - 10:50a
PANEL: WHISTLEBLOWERS – WHAT IN-HOUSE COUNSEL NEED TO KNOW
Moderator: Linda Woolf -- Goodell DeVries Leech & Dann (Baltimore, MD)
In 2015 more than 700 cases were commenced under the False Claims Act. More than 600 of them were whistleblower cases where plaintiffs can win a share of the recovery. How can a company protect itself from exposure when the incentive to report is so great? Trial lawyer Linda Woolf will lead our panel of in-house counsel discussing whistleblowers and what you, as in-house counsel, can do to protect your client.

With Discussion By:
Mark Dapier - Turner Acceptance (Skokie, IL)
James Villa - Versar (Springfield, VA)
Christine Zack - Fundamental Administrative Services (Sparks, MD)

10:50a - 11:20a
REFRESHMENT AND COFFEE BREAK

11:20a - 11:40a
TAKING THE AIR OUT OF THE WHISTLE IN WHISTLEBLOWER LITIGATION
Kevin Baumgardner -- Corr Cronin Michelson Baumgardner Fogg & Moore (Seattle, WA)
Daniel Ellsberg, Karen Silkwood, Erin Brockovich, Edward Snowden each has had a movie made about them. And why? Because each one is a whistle-blower – a person who sometimes put the interests of others ahead of their own interests and disclosed the wrongdoing of their employers. Trial lawyer Kevin Baumgardner has successfully handled more than a dozen “whistleblower” cases. He will describe what it takes to deal with whistle-blowers, what protections they have, how to react to an alleged whistleblower’s allegations, how to identify bogus claims, what to say and not to say, the kinds of investigations to make, defending company witnesses at deposition, dealing with the media, etc.

11:40a - 12:00p
AFTER THE WORST HAPPENS: THE PUNITIVE DAMAGES AWARD ON APPEAL
Amy Sorenson -- Snell & Wilmer (Salt Lake City, UT)
Punitive damages – quasi-criminal punishment without the protection of criminal procedure rules -- pose a danger of arbitrarily depriving defendants of property without due process. Trial lawyer Amy Sorenson discusses bases for overturning punitive awards, including how one $25.5 million punitive damages award was reversed on appeal as unconstitutional and unsupported by the evidence.

12:00p - 12:20p
TCPA AND FCRA - FIVE THINGS YOU NEED ON YOUR COMPLIANCE CHECKLIST
David Esquivel -- Bass Berry & Sims (Nashville, TN)
New technologies and privacy laws do not always play well together. And more industries find themselves making consumer credit, payment, and collections decisions governed by the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Trial lawyer David Esquivel offers five must-have items for your financial services checklist to help avoid costly litigation and regulatory risk.

12:20p - 12:40p
SETTLEMENT MEANS IT’S OVER – RIGHT?
Chris King -- Lightfoot Franklin & White (Birmingham, AL)
Plaintiffs are finding new ways to both have their cake and eat it. That is, they have ways to retain settlement proceeds and sue for more by alleging misrepresentation or suppression of material information in connection with settlements. Trial lawyer Chris King will offer lessons learned from defending “second-bites-at-the-apple" suits and helping defendants achieve bullet-proof settlements.

12:40p - 1:00a
BEST PRACTICES FOR INTERNAL INVESTIGATIONS
John Romeo -- Gibbons (Philadelphia, PA)
In-house counsel are the first line of defense for workplace complaints, and a well-run investigation can put your company on the right track from the start. Under the backdrop of recent NFL investigations including the Ray Rice investigation and "deflategate," trial lawyer John Romeo will discuss best practices for avoiding common mistakes that can often make matters worse.

Saturday, October 29

9:05a - 9:10a
Welcome From The Seminar Chairs
Jerry Glas -- Deutsch Kerrigan (New Orleans, LA)
Nikki Nesbitt -- Goodell DeVries (Baltimore, MD)
Amy Sorenson -- Snell & Wilmer (Salt Lake City, UT)
Jessie Zeigler -- Bass Berry & Sims (Nashville, TN)

 

9:10a - 9:30a
RATHER UNUSUAL QUESTIONS FOR YOUR EXPERT DURING TRIAL PREP
Ray Lewis -- Deutsch Kerrigan (New Orleans, LA)
Jurors are initially suspicious of lawyers and their hand-picked experts. It is time to rethink our approach to direct examination or it will continue to be the most predictable, boring, and ignored part of a jury trial. Trial lawyer Ray Lewis proposes a different approach to direct examination that all in-house counsel should embrace before their counsel’s next "dance" with an expert.

9:30a - 9:50a
SOCIAL MEDIA AND ITS EFFECT ON JURY TRIALS
Christine Welstead -- Akerman (Miami, FL)
Voir Dire, those initial questions posed to potential jurors in order to determine their suitability, should be informed by the jurors’ public Internet presence and use of social media. Although direct communication with jurors is banned, investigation of jurors’ public activities on the Internet is fine. Trial lawyer Christine Welstead discusses the depth of information now available to attorneys concerning potential and sitting jurors; the increasingly strenuous instructions to the jury seeking to prohibit their use of social media to investigate and comment on pending cases; sanctions that have been imposed on juries; proposed pledges and other ways to combat juror misuse of social media.

9:50a - 10:10a
BULLET-PROOF EMPLOYEE HANDBOOKS
Vito Gagliardi -- Porzio Bromberg & Newman (Morristown, NJ)
Your employee handbook has a new editor - The National Labor Relations Board - whether your employees are unionized or not. In recent decisions, the NLRB has ruled that many common provisions of employee handbooks are unlawful. Trial lawyer Vito Gagliardi will highlight common defective provisions and suggest revisions before your company is nailed by the NLRB.

10:10a - 10:50a
PANEL: SETTING RESERVES FOR CLAIMS AND LITIGATION
Moderator: Joshua Metcalf -- Forman Watkins & Krutz (Jackson, MS)
Balancing the impact of loss reserves on reported financial performance with FASB and SEC compliance and your own assessment of likelihood of success, not to mention the message you might be sending to plaintiff counsel - nothing you learned in law school. Our panel, moderated by trial lawyer Joshua Metcalf, will outline the nuts and bolts of setting reserves and managing the disclosure of risks.

With Discussion By:
Laura Buckland - T-Mobile (Belevue, WA)
Paul DeGiulio - Allied World Assurance (Bermuda)

10:50a - 11:20a
REFRESHMENT AND COFFEE BREAK

11:20a - 11:40a
CROSS-BORDER LITIGATION: BUILDING YOUR CASE AND ENFORCING YOUR U.S. JUDGMENT IN CANADA
Sean Boyle -- Blake Cassels & Graydon (Canada)
In commercial litigation today, the parties and facts increasingly cross the U.S.- Canada border. That added complexity should not hinder your client from building its case or enforcing its judgment. Canadian courts frequently assist in collecting evidence for foreign proceedings and addressing potential restrictions on derivative use. Once a U.S. judgment is rendered, Canadian legislation and the common law generally allow for its enforcement in Canada. For that reason, it is important to incorporate those concepts into your litigation strategy as early as possible when Canadian evidence or assets are at stake.

11:40a - 12:00p
LITIGATING COMPLEX BUSINESS DISPUTES IN SPECIALIZED BUSINESS COURTS
Jonathan Watkins -- Moore & Van Allen (Charlotte, NC)
Dozens of States have launched specialized business courts in the mold of the Delaware Court of Chancery with the goal of bringing more qualified judges to cases requiring increased business sophistication, improving resources, decisions and opinions, removing bias and improving quality of counsel. Trial lawyer Jon Watkins will discuss the advantages and characteristics of several prominent business courts, important recent rulings of some high-profile business courts, and ways to maximize the chances of having future cases heard in business courts.

12:00p - 12:05p
Special Presentation by the Network Vice-Chair
David Schultz -- Maslon (Minneapolis, MN)
 

12:05p - 12:10p
Closing Statement (before Break-Outs) by the Network Chair
Lee Hollis -- Lightfoot Franklin & White (Birmingham, AL)
 

12:10p - 1:10p
LITIGATION MANAGEMENT BREAK-OUT DISCUSSION SESSIONS

SESSION A: IN-HOUSE COUNSEL FACING THE CHALLENGES OF CHALLENGING TIMES
Moderator: Roger McCleary -- Parons McEntire McCleary & Clark (Houston, TX)

Room: Grand Oaks D

Discussion Group Leaders:
Diane Averell - Porzio Bromberg & Newman (Morristown, NJ)
Kristin Herber - Under Armour (Baltimore, MD)
Bobby Hood, Jr. - Hood Law Firm (Charleston, SC)
Craig May - Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell (Denver, CO)
Michael Moore - Corr Cronin (Seattle, WA)
David Walton - Parsons McEntire McCleary & Clark (Dallas, TX)
Tony White - Thompson Hine (Columbus, OH)

SESSION B: CYBERSECURITY ISSUES FACING IN-HOUSE COUNSEL
Moderator: Joel Hoxie -- Snell & Wilmer (Phoenix, AZ)

Room: Grand Oaks C

Discussion Group Leaders:
Bill Cronin - Corr Cronin (Seattle, WA)
James Melendres - Snell & Wilmer (Phoenix, AZ)
Justin Pitt - Community Health Systems (Franklin, TN)
Jim Villa - Versar (Springfield, VA)

SESSION C: EFFECTIVE LEGAL PROJECT MANAGEMENT FOR LITIGATION
Moderator: Tony Rospert -- Thompson Hine (Cleveland, OH)

Room: Heron I

Discussion Group Leaders:
Mark Dietz - DHL Express (Plantation, FL)
Scott Etish - Gibbons (Philadelphia, PA)
Alan Gries - Gibbons (Philadelphia, PA)
Howard Iwrey - Dykema (Bloomfield Hills, MI)

SESSION D: LITIGATION MANAGEMENT
Moderator: Molly Craig -- Hood Law Firm (Charleston, SC)

Room: Heron II

Discussion Group Leaders:
Mylene Cote - Liberty International Underwriters (Montreal, QUE)
Charles Stoia - Porzio Bromberg & Newman (Morristown, NJ)
Mike Williams - Wheeler Trigg O'Donnell (Denver, CO)
Jessie Zeigler - Bass Berry & Sims (Nashville, TN)

Online Registration



Agenda and Activities

Thursday, October 27 -- 7:00p
Opening Reception and Dinner -- Location: Grand Lawn

Thursday, October 27 -- 10:00p
Hospitality Suite - Ashley/Cooper Room

Friday, October 28 -- 7:30a
Registration / Continental Breakfast - Grand Oaks Foyer

Friday, October 28 -- 9:00a
CLE SuperCourse Day 1 Begins - Grand Oaks AB

Friday, October 28 -- 9:30a
Spouse/Significant Other Charleston City Shopping and Lunch (with Afternoon Walking Tour)

Friday, October 28 -- 1:00p
CLE SuperCourse Day 1 Concludes

Friday, October 28 -- 1:30p
Afternoon Activities - Charleston City Walking Tour, Pool Gathering, Bicycle Safari, Golf at Ocean Course, Spa

Friday, October 28 -- 7:00p
Dinner -- Ocean Course Lawn

Friday, October 28 -- 10:00p
Hospitality Suite - Ashley/Cooper Suite

Saturday, October 29 -- 7:30a
Registration / Continental Breakfast - Grand Oaks Foyer

Saturday, October 29 -- 9:00a
CLE SuperCourse Day 2 Begins - Grand Oaks AB

Saturday, October 29 -- 1:10p
CLE SuperCourse Day 2 Concludes

Saturday, October 29 -- 1:30p
Afternoon Activities - Kayaking, College Football, Nature Walk, Golf at Oak Point, Spa

Saturday, October 29 -- 7:00p
Closing Night Dinner - Mingo Point

Saturday, October 29 -- 10:00p
Hospitality Suite - Ashley/Cooper Room