Davis Law Firm
Social Media
Davis Law Firm on Facebook Davis Law Firm on LinkedIn

News

 

Please return to this page soon for other news on people with our firm!

Congratulations!

We congratulate our own Drew Devenport on his recognition at the 6th annual Cesar Chavez Commemorative Banquet recently held on May 12 in Fayetteville.  The Banquet is held each year in recognition of Cesar Chavez’s work on behalf of farm workers to improve working conditions. Drew was honored for his work in helping to provide a voice for those who may not understand their rights. He practices immigration law in our Springdale office.

November 2016

For many years, members of the firm have been listed in “SuperLawyers” published by Thomson Reuters.  The selection process includes peer nominations, independent third-party verification and peer evaluation, resulting in a list which includes only 5% of practicing attorneys.  Recently, the 2016 list for the Mid-South Region (including Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi) was published including the following members in these designated practice areas:

  • Constance G. Clark – Creditor Debtor Rights
  • Wm. Jackson Butt II – Business Litigation
  • Kelly Carithers – Personal Injury Medical Malpractice: Defense
  • Don A. Taylor – Personal Injury General Defense

In addition, Don A. Taylor was named to the Top 50 Lawyers in Arkansas, an honor given to only four attorneys in Fayetteville.  Congratulations to all of you on this commendation!   Additional information and attorney profiles can be viewed here.

 

Best Lawyers Again

The Davis Law Firm is pleased to announce that several of our attorneys have once again been listed in the 2017 listing of Best Lawyers in America.  The process for selection is this group is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey in which the participating lawyers are not allowed to pay fees for inclusion.  We look upon this as a high honor bestowed on these attorneys by their peers who work with them and against them  and recognize excellence in the field. The lawyers selected are listed along with their areas of specialty:

  • Sidney P. Davis, Jr.:  Bet-the-Company Litigation; Commercial Litigation; Labor and Employment Litigation; Medical Malpractice Law-Defendants; Personal Injury Litigation-Defendants
  • Constance G. Clark:  Appellate Practice; Commercial Litigation; Bankruptcy Litigation; Real Estate Litigation; Workers Compensation Law-Employers
  • William Jackson Butt II:  Litigation-Trusts and Estates; Trusts and Estates
  • Kelly Carithers:  Medical Malpractice Law-Defendants; Personal Injury Litigation-Defendants
  • Don A. Taylor:  Personal Injury Litigation-Defendants

Also just published is the selection of the Davis Law Firm by the U.S. News and World Report as a 2017 “Best Law Firm” in its highest, “Tier 1” ranking, in what is described by U.S. News and World Report  as a rigorous selection process.  We are honored to be so selected by the peer review process.

 

Awarded

The Davis Law Firm congratulates David Conrad James and Cristen Cori Handley upon their 2016 graduation from the University of Arkansas School of Law.  At Commencement ceremonies on May 21st, they were recognized for receiving the Davis, Clark, Butt, Carithers and Taylor, PLC Appellate Advocacy Prize, which is awarded for exceptional achievement in appellate advocacy.  These two students had exemplary accomplishments in competitions at the law school, regionally and nationally, perfecting their legal writing, oral advocacy and teamwork.  Congratulations James and Cristen!  We’re excited to see what you accomplish as new lawyers.

 

June 2016

Davis Law Firm is excited about the recent publication of an article written by Constance Clark in The Arkansas Lawyer, a professional journal published by the Arkansas Bar Association.  Connie’s article, “A Practitioner’s Guide to Arkansas’ New Venue Statutes” is written to assist Arkansas lawyers in sorting out the new provisions pertaining to the proper venue for filing litigation in Arkansas.  Not only is the article helpful and comprehensive to legal professionals, it’s an excellent example of Connie’s writing skills – and why members of our firm often turn to her when it comes time to brief issues and write appeals.  You can access the article through the publications section of the Arkansas Bar Association website, www.arkbar.com or through this link.

 

May 2016

We are pleased that Legal Aid of Arkansas has chosen Jack Butt to receive the annual Outstanding Volunteer Service Award for the Arkansas Volunteer Lawyers for the Elderly.  The Arkansas Volunteer Lawyers for the Elderly program is a division of Legal Aid of Arkansas that serves clients over the age of 60.  The Area Agency on Aging and Legal Aid of Arkansas work together so that senior adults living in Arkansas can receive free legal assistance.  The award recognizes outstanding volunteerism and service to elderly residents.  Several attorneys at our firm do volunteer work for AVLE, a great program serving our senior citizens.  

 

A Milestone

IMG_4634

On Saturday, March 12, friends, family and colleagues gathered at the Fayetteville Country Club to celebrate the retirement of Sid Davis, pictured here with his long-time assistant, Jamie Rouse.  Sid obtained his law degree and began working at this firm in 1960.  He has been an example of hard work, legal excellence and compassion to all who have worked here and has guided the firm through a half century of changes.  One of the items on display on Saturday night, along with his numerous awards, was Sid’s Royal typewriter, which he used for years to pound out letters and legal arguments that produced either pride or fear in the recipients, depending on whether they were on Sid’s side or against him.  In the Royal was a sheet of paper containing this message from the attorneys and staff here at the Davis Law Firm:  Sid, you have been our wise mentor, faithful leader and dear friend for 55 years.  Your legal talents and integrity are unmatched, and your devoted service to the legal profession has earned the very highest respect of your colleagues and clients.  We can’t thank you enough for everything you have done for us and will miss you more than words can say.  Best wishes for a happy retirement—you deserve it!

IMG_7311

 

Our Three Mediators

The Davis Law Firm now has three certified mediators to assist litigants with resolving their disputes without the stress and expense of a trial. Don Taylor is certified as a civil mediator, bringing 26 years of experience in civil litigation and a wealth of knowledgeable in the areas of insurance law, personal injury, products liability, malpractice, premises liability, professional liability, and construction law.  Joshua McFadden has been certified by the Arkansas Alternative Dispute Resolution Commission since 2012 and practicing since 2007.  Joshua’s civil litigation practice is focused in the areas of commercial litigation, real estate litigation, bankruptcy, insurance law, professional liability litigation, and construction litigation. Brian Lester is certified in the area of domestic relations, with a decade of experience in that area of the law. All of these mediators are available to conduct mediations either in our offices or at other mutually agreeable locations.

 

July 2015

DAT award2b

On July 31, 2015, Don A. Taylor was awarded the Outstanding Defense Attorney Award, 2014-2015, at the annual meeting of the Arkansas Association of Defense Counsel (AADC). AADC is an organization of lawyers in Arkansas whose work focuses primarily on defense litigation. They seek to elevate the standards of defense trial practice and to develop a high standard of trial conduct and courtroom manners, as well as to work to improve the adversary system in the courts. Don’s award states, “In recognition of his excellence and integrity in the practice of law and in the representation of defendants in litigation matters throughout his distinguished career.” We couldn’t agree more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Defense verdict in Benton County Circuit Court

On March 16, 2015, trial commenced before Judge Xollie Duncan in Benton County Circuit Court in a medical malpractice lawsuit filed against Ashley Health & Rehabilitation, a nursing home facility located in Rogers, Arkansas. The facility was defended by Davis Law Firm partners, Kelly Carithers and Colin Johnson, who were assisted at trial by the firm’s paralegal, Traci Wills. The lawsuit alleged that Ashley Health and its nursing staff failed to provide necessary and appropriate care to an 81-year-old patient who had been admitted to the facility following a knee replacement procedure, resulting in the patient’s untimely and premature death.

After five full days of trial, the submission of hundreds of pages of trial exhibits and extensive testimony from numerous fact and expert witnesses, Plaintiff’s counsel requested the jury award damages of not less than $7,000,000. After careful deliberation, the jury decided in favor of Ashley Health and its staff when it returned defense verdicts indicating that Ashley Health did not commit medical malpractice in connection with the care and treatment provided to the patient. The jury’s verdict was not appealed.

The Davis Law Firm is very proud and privileged to have had the opportunity to represent Ashley Health & Rehabilitation and its dedicated staff of healthcare professionals in this matter.

 

A Golden Eagle WJB award (800x600)

At its annual banquet on April 7th, the Westark Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America awarded Jack Butt its Golden Eagle Award. The Council’s Golden Eagle Award recognizes the noteworthy and extraordinary leadership of citizens throughout its 17 county service area, delivering a message to youth that character counts. The lives of Golden Eagle Award Recipients put into place guideposts that serve to inspire youth to lead, to accept responsibility, and to care about principles and causes beyond self-interest. The event also served as a very effective fund raiser for the local District, raising over $15,000.

November 2014

On October 27, 2014, trial commenced in Washington County Circuit Court in a wrongful death action filed against Washington Regional Medical Center.  The hospital was defended by Davis Law Firm partners, Kelly Carithers and Colin Johnson, who were assisted at trial by firm paralegal, Traci Wills. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of the Estate of Ernest Henry, claimed that the various nurses and physicians were negligent in their treatment of Mr. Henry, a 65-year-old male patient who was airlifted to the emergency room following a motor vehicle accident near Eureka Springs.

On October 29, 2011, Mr. Henry arrived at the emergency department with serious, life-threatening injuries and was ultimately stabilized by the emergency room staff and on-call trauma surgeons. Mr. Henry remained hospitalized for the next 13 days, during which he underwent numerous medical procedures as a result of his traumatic injuries.  During the early morning hours of November 11, 2011, Mr. Henry suddenly and unexpectedly deteriorated and went into cardiopulmonary arrest. Despite the responding medical team’s exhaustive efforts to resuscitate him, Mr. Henry passed away.

After a full 11 days of trial, the submission of hundreds of pages of trial exhibits, and extensive testimony from 27 witnesses, Plaintiff’s counsel requested that the jury award damages of at least $5,000,000. After deliberating for only 40 minutes, the Jury promptly returned a defense verdict in favor of Washington Regional Medical Center, its nursing staff, and three local surgeons who had also been named in the suit. The case was not appealed.

The Davis Law Firm is very proud to represent Washington Regional Medical Center and its dedicated staff of healthcare professionals.

 

Best Lawyers

Once again, Davis Law Firm has been ranked among the best law firms in America by Best Lawyers and U.S. News and World Report.  In the 2015 rankings, Davis Law Firm received a Tier 1 ranking in the following practice areas:

  1. Appellate Practice;
  2. Commercial Litigation;
  3. Litigation – Labor & Employment;
  4. Medical Malpractice Law – Defense;
  5. Personal Injury – Defense; and
  6. Workers’ Compensation Law – Employers;

Davis Law Firm also received a Tier 2 ranking in the following additional practice areas:

  1. Litigation – Bankruptcy;
  2. Litigation – Real Estate; and
  3. Trusts & Estates Law.

We are honored to be recognized by Best Lawyers, the oldest and most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession.  Its lists of outstanding attorneys are compiled by conducting exhaustive peer-review surveys in which tens of thousands of leading lawyers confidentially evaluate their professional peers.  The methodology is designed to capture, as accurately as possible, the consensus opinion of leading lawyers about the professional abilities of their colleagues within the same geographical area and legal practice area.

 

October 2014

Joshua McFadden has been selected to participate in the Leadership Fayetteville Program. The Leadership Fayetteville Program provides an opportunity for business professionals, nonprofit professionals, community leaders, and members of the legal profession to become more actively involved in leadership within the City of Fayetteville. The year-long program is run by the Fayetteville Chamber of Commerce and gives Leadership Fayetteville class members the chance to receive a behind-the-scenes look at the City of Fayetteville’s social services, education, local government, history, healthcare, quality of life, interaction with state government and role in the overall economic development of Northwest Arkansas.

 

September 2014

The Davis Law Firm is proud to once again be a sponsor of the Gentlemen of Distinction fundraising event to support Hope Cancer Resources in northwest Arkansas and its efforts to provide patient support and community education.  We are honored to be the only law firm sponsor for this year’s event, to be held on October 3, 2014, at 6:30 p.m.  Please join us as we support this worthy cause.  You can find out more by clicking here.

 

August 2014

The firm was honored again this year to be notified that five of our partners were selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2015 (Copyright 2014 by Woodward/White, Inc., Aiken, SC). Firm lawyers selected are:

  • Sidney P. Davis, Jr., Bet-the-Company and Commercial Litigation, Labor and Employment Litigation, and Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants
  • Constance G. Clark, Appellate Practice, Commercial, Real Estate and Bankruptcy Litigation; Workers’ Compensation- Employers
  • William Jackson Butt II, Trusts and Estates and Trusts and Estates Litigation
  • Kelly Carithers, Medical Malpractice Law and Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants
  • Don A. Taylor, Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants
  • “Lawyer of the Year” recognition for Northwest Arkansas was given through the same peer selection process to Constance G. Clark for Appellate Practice

Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Because Best Lawyers is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey in which almost 50,000 leading attorneys cast nearly five million votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas, and because lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed, inclusion in Best Lawyers is considered a singular honor.

 

May 2014

Legal Aid of Arkansas recently announced that Don A. Taylor is being recognized for his outstanding volunteerism in the Fourth Judicial District, which includes Madison and Washington Counties.  Legal Aid of Arkansas is a non-profit corporation with a vision to improve the lives of low income Arkansans by championing equal access to justice regardless of economic or social circumstances.  Legal Aid provides free legal help with civil matters to those who qualify, and Don donated a significant amount of hours of pro bono service to low income clients during 2013.

 

ADC swearing in    Davis Firm Welcomes New Associate:

Following a tradition started over 50 years ago with our now senior partner, Sid Davis, the firm is pleased to announce we have hired our newest associate after a successful law clerk internship with the Firm. Andrew Curtis received notice on Friday, April 4, that he had successfully passed the Arkansas Bar exam. He was presented by members of the firm to Circuit Judge Mark Lindsay on Monday, April 6, to be sworn in as a member of the Arkansas Bar and became a fully licensed lawyer with the Firm.
Andrew grew up in Wickes, Polk County, Arkansas. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree Summa Cum Laude from Ouachita Baptist University where he was a Pew Scholar. He took a Master’s degree in History from the University of Arkansas before attending the University of Arkansas Law School where he received his Juris Doctor degree, Cum Laude in December 2013. While in law school, in addition to his successful clerkship at the Davis Firm, Andrew worked in various intern positions with McClarty and Associates in Washington, D.C., Washington County Circuit Judge Joanna Taylor, Wal-Mart, and the Office of the Arkansas Attorney General.

Andrew begins immediately assisting the firm in its general practice of law, using and expanding his legal skills in all areas.

Serving our legal community —

We are proud to announce that David Dixon was recently elected as the 2014 President of the Washington County Bar Association.  David Dixon has been a member of the Washington County Bar Association since 2007, and served as the Association’s Secretary/Treasurer in 2012, and Vice-President in 2013.

And now in Oklahoma . . .

The Davis Law Firm has recently expanded our legal practice into Oklahoma.  This fall, the Oklahoma Supreme Court licensed Josh McFadden to practice law in the State of Oklahoma.  Josh McFadden primarily practices in the areas of commercial litigation and insurance defense, but he also handles a wide variety of legal matters.

“SuperLawyers”–

The Davis Firm is proud to announce that the 2013  “SuperLawyers” publication has selected firm attorneys Sid Davis and Don Taylor for inclusion in the top 50 lawyers in Arkansas.  These two attorneys, along with firm lawyers Connie Clark, Kelly Carithers and Jack Butt, were also selected as “Super Lawyers” in the Mid-South region of Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi in specific practice areas. Sid Davis and Kelly Carithers were selected in the area of medical malpractice defense, Connie Clark was selected in the area of bankruptcy and creditor/debtor rights, Jack Butt was selected in the area of business litigation, and Don Taylor was selected in the area of general personal injury defense litigation. Thomson Reuters, the publisher of the select “SuperLawyers” list each year,  describes its selection process as a rigorous, multi-stage process in which peer nominations and evaluations are combined with independent research from a variety of online and database sources. For more information, see www.SuperLawyers.com

November 2013–

 

At the request of the Debtor/Creditor Section of the Arkansas Bar Association, Josh McFadden joined the faculty of its Fall Continuing Legal Education Program.  The program in Springdale, Arkansas, on November 8 focused on issues facing bankruptcy practitioners in Arkansas.  Josh presented “Pleading Discharge and Dischargeability Actions in Bankruptcy Court.”  The program was attended by approximately 60 Arkansas attorneys and two United States Bankruptcy Court judges.  Josh regularly represents creditors in the United States Bankruptcy Court.

BEST LAWYERS IN AMERICA…still populate the Davis Law Firm

The firm was honored again this year to be notified that five of our partners were selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America 2014 (Copyright 2013 by Woodward/White, Inc., Aiken, SC). Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Because Best Lawyers is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey in which almost 50,000 leading attorneys cast nearly five million votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas, and because lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed, inclusion in Best Lawyers is considered a singular honor. Corporate Counsel magazine has called Best Lawyers “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.” Firm lawyers so selected are: Sidney P. Davis, Jr., Bet-the-Company and Commercial Litigation, Labor and Employment Litigation, and Medical Malpractice and Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants; Constance G. Clark, Appellate Practice, Commercial, Real Estate and Bankruptcy Litigation; Workers’ Compensation- employers; William Jackson Butt II, Trusts and Estates and Trusts and Estates Litigation; Kelly Carithers, Medical Malpractice Law and Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants; and Don A. Taylor, Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants.

. . . and singular “Lawyer of the Year” recognition for Northwest Arkansas was given through the same peer selection process to both Kelly Carithers for Medical Malpractice Law – Defendants, and Sidney P. Davis, Jr., for Labor & Employment Litigation.  We are certainly honored by the confidence shown by our professional colleagues and peers in this selection.

 

August 2013–

NEW IMMIGRATION LAW OFFICE OPENED IN SPRINGDALE: On August 1, 2103 the Springdale Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting for one of its newest members, the Davis Law Firm. The Davis Firm is a long-established Northwest Arkansas firm which has just opened an immigration law office in Springdale, under the management of attorney Drew Devenport and paralegal Lorena Zamora. The event was well attended by members of the firm and the Ambassador’s Committee from the Springdale Chamber of Commerce. Jack Butt, managing partner of the Davis Firm, made these remarks at the event:

The Davis Law Firm is pleased to become a member of the Springdale Chamber of Commerce. As most of you know, our main office is in Fayetteville. Our law firm has been serving clients in Northwest Arkansas since 1953, for over 60 years. Though we have many Springdale clients, and over the years a fair number of our lawyers and staff have lived in Springdale, this is the first office we have opened in Springdale. This office is opened in recognition of the fact that we provide general legal services to the people of Northwest Arkansas.

Twenty-five years ago, immigration law was a curious specialty practice, with no real need in a general practice firm to offer that. Today, the Latino population of Northwest Arkansas, something over 60,000 people, approximately equals the entire population of either Fayetteville or Springdale or Rogers. Latinos are here because there is honest work for good pay and a good quality of life, and because our thriving economy needs their services. A general practice law firm cannot ignore that almost a fifth of the population of Northwest Arkansas is recently arrived from other countries, and many arrive in uncertain status under the immigration laws. Springdale is near the geographical center of our recent immigrant population, and a good place for our new office. Our existing business clients need competent counsel on employment law immigration matters.

Immigration has been, from the very beginning of the history of the United States, a very difficult social, political and legal issue. Frankly, the very first immigrants from Europe were not usually well received by the native Americans, and with good cause because the ultimate result was the eradication of entire cultures throughout America. African Americans were brought here very much against their will as slaves. Even those who have come voluntarily over the last three centuries have been met with uncertainty, as those already here simultaneously embraced and despised the newcomers. In turn, the English, Germans, Irish, Arabs, Africans, Jews, Chinese, Japanese, Korean–too many ethnicities to recount–have arrived here, fleeing to hopefully a better place than their origin. Legal and social integration as an immigrant has rarely been easy, or simple, or quick. But it has made the America we are so proud and lucky to live in.

One of the reasons all of us have come ourselves or through our ancestors to America is the equal rule of law in the United States. Our laws are not perfect, and those who administer them are but human, but we adopt them carefully and seek to enforce them diligently and fairly. The immigration laws of today struggle with the same kinds of social, economic and political uncertainty that has always existed as to who, when and how the United States accepts immigrants. But these laws are thoughtfully adopted, and those who have the challenge of applying them do so in good faith. In that, as in all other aspects of the law, those who must deal with these laws are entitled to a lawyer, and as one of the oldest general practice firms in Northwest Arkansas, we are interested in providing legal services to those who need them.

So, we are very pleased to open this office, specializing in immigration law, in continuing our service to Northwest Arkansas as a general practice law firm.

June 2013–

On June 5, 2013, William F. Clark was appointed by the President of the Arkansas Bar Association to represent District A-2 (Washington County) in the Arkansas Bar Association’s House of Delegates. The Arkansas Bar Association House of Delegates is the policy making body of the Association, and is responsible adopting Association By-Laws and policies, voting to send proposed revisions of pending legislation to the Arkansas General Assembly for its consideration, among other things.

On June 15, 2013, Davis Firm attorneys and delegates Joshua D. McFadden and Will Clark attended the House of Delegates Meeting at the Arkansas Bar Association’s Annual Meeting in Hot Springs, Arkansas.

March 2013–

The Davis Firm has been informed that it has made the short list of finalists selected by Finance Monthly Magazine in the category of Medical Malpractice Law Firm of the Year – USA.

Finance Monthly is an international publication which provides news, insight, comment and analysis on funds, corporate tax, mergers & acquisitions and private equity. Written for the corporate reader, Finance Monthly examines the driving forces that affect the corporate world from a financial view point month by month. Now in its fourth year, the Finance Monthly Law Awards recognize law firms and legal professionals who have outperformed their peers through dedication to client service and work undertaken within the past year. To establish the final list of winners, two key methodologies are used: First, the voting and nomination process available online through the Finance Monthly website; second, from analyzing firm performance through information made available via client feedback, news reports and market data. The voting process operates a points based system and attaches a weighting system to nominations, ensuring a fair and accurate process. The points system runs in parallel with additional supporting narrative and research undertaken. This quantitative and qualitative approach ensures the Finance Monthly Law Awards are based on performance. The Finance Monthly Law Awards are formally announced each year through a special Awards edition publication.

The Davis Firm, which has a well-established medical malpractice defense practice, is honored to be considered for this recognition.

Defense Verdict in Chrisman Redi-Mix v. Industrial Oils Unlimited in the Circuit Court of Franklin County, Arkansas.

Don A. Taylor with paralegal Traci Wills successfully defended Industrial Oils Unlimited in a two-day jury trial in Ozark, Arkansas, on December 20 and 21, 2012. Chrisman Redi-Mix claimed that Industrial Oils Unlimited had provided it with defective lubrication products which damaged the diesel engines in at least two pieces of its equipment and resulted in thousands of dollars in costs for changing the oil in multiple other engines. The plaintiff had refused to pay for the product which it claimed was defective, and the defendant, through its attorney, Robert Rhoads, made a claim for payment. Defense counsel presented evidence through the testimony of Industrial Oils employees and independent witnesses, contesting that there was any defect in any of its product delivered to Chrisman. At the conclusion of the trial, the 12-person jury rendered a unanimous verdict in favor of Industrial Oils Unlimited and found that the plaintiff should pay for the product delivered to it.

Davis Firm has two selected as Northwest Arkansas “Lawyers of the Year” for 2013

The Davis Firm was pleased to be notified by Best Lawyers that two members of the firm have been named “Lawyers of the Year” for 2013 in Northwest Arkansas. Connie Clark was selected in the area of Appellate Practice, and Jack Butt was selected in the area of Trusts and Estates. The announcement from Best Lawyers provided this information about the process:

Lawyers being honored as “Lawyer of the Year” are selected based on particularly impressive voting averages received during the exhaustive peer-review assessments we conduct with thousands of leading lawyers each year. Receiving this designation reflects the high level of respect a lawyer has earned among other leading lawyers in the same communities and the same practice areas for their abilities, their professionalism, and their integrity. Only a single lawyer in each practice area and designated metropolitan area is honored as the “Lawyer of the Year,” making this accolade particularly significant.

Best Lawyers is the oldest and most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession. A listing in Best Lawyers is widely regarded by both clients and legal professionals as a significant honor, conferred on a lawyer by his or her peers. For more than three decades, Best Lawyers® lists have earned the respect of the profession, the media, and the public, as the most reliable, unbiased source of legal referrals anywhere Best Lawyers® began designating “Lawyers of the Year” in the U.S. in high-profile legal practice areas in 2009. For more information, see www.bestlawyers.com.

Davis Firm Obtains Defense Verdict in Estate of Juanita Roman v. Washington Regional Medical Center

On October 4, 2012, trial commenced in Washington County Circuit Court in a wrongful death action filed against Washington Regional Medical Center and two of its emergency room nurses, who were defended by Davis Firm partners, Kelly Carithers and Colin Johnson, assisted at trial by firm paralegal, Traci Wills. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of the Estate of Juanita Roman, claimed that the Medical Center through its nurses was negligent in treatment of Ms. Roman, a 21-year-old female patient who came to the emergency room and ultimately suffered cardiopulmonary collapse and death.

The patient initially presented to the emergency department with a three-day history of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and low fluid intake. After completion of the triage process, the patient was admitted and continuously monitored, tested and treated accordingly over the course of the next several hours. Though the patient’s condition remained stable for several hours, she suddenly and unexpectedly deteriorated and went into cardiopulmonary arrest. While the extensive efforts of the emergency room physician and nursing staff were successful in resuscitating the patient, her condition continued to deteriorate throughout the night and she subsequently passed away.

After a full five days of trial, the submission of numerous trial exhibits, and extensive testimony of both fact and expert witnesses, Plaintiff’s counsel requested the jury find damages of at least $850,000. The Jury’s verdict, rendered in less than two hours, was unanimous in favor of Washington Regional Medical Center, its emergency room nurses and a local emergency room physician who had also been named in the suit. The case was not appealed.

David Dixon elected as Washington Co. Bar Association Vice President

At its monthly year end meeting on December 3, the Washington County Bar Association elected Davis Firm lawyer David Dixon as its Vice-President. David has served the Bar Association during 2012 as its Secretary-Treasurer. The Washington County Bar Association is a professional membership association comprised of over 300 actively practicing Washington County attorneys. The Association serves as a forum for issues of interest to the local bar and supports various local professional and community causes. Also elected as officers for 2013 were Meika Hatcher, President, and Alan Lane, Secretary/Treasurer.

November 2012–Accolades

~American Lawyer Media has recognized Davis, Clark, Butt, Carithers & Taylor, PLC as one of the “2013 Go-To Law Firms at the Top 500 Companies.”  American Lawyer Media publishes “In-House Law Departments at the Top 500 Companies” and, based upon data from Fortune 500 companies’ general counsels and additional research and key databases, determines which law firms those companies rely upon for outside counsel in key practice areas. The Davis Law Firm was selected as “go-to” law firm for contracts litigation.  For more information, see www.alm.com.

~The Davis Firm is proud to announce that the “SuperLawyers” publication has selected firm attorneys Sid Davis and Don Taylor for inclusion in the top 50 lawyers in Arkansas and Connie Clark as among the top 50 women lawyers in the three-state Mid-South area of Arkansas, Mississippi and Tennessee. These three attorneys, along with Kelly Carithers and Jack Butt, were also selected in specific practice areas. Sid Davis and Kelly Carithers were selected in the area of medical malpractice defense, Connie Clark was selected in the area of bankruptcy and creditor/debtor rights, Jack Butt was selected in the area of business litigation, and Don Taylor was selected in the area of general personal injury defense litigation. Thomson Reuters describes its selection process as a rigorous, multi-stage process in which peer nominations and evaluations are combined with independent research from a variety of online and database sources. For more information, see www.SuperLawyers.com.

~The Davis Law Firm has been ranked as a 2013 first-tier “Best Law Firm” by U.S. News Media Group, which publishes the U.S. News & World Report magazine, and Best Lawyers, the oldest and most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession. The firm has been ranked in Tier 1 in six separate practice areas: commercial litigation, medical malpractice defense, personal injury defense, labor and employment litigation, workers’ compensation law – employers, and eminent domain and condemnation litigation. The national first-tier rankings will be featured in U.S. News & World Report’s Money issue, on newsstands November 20, 2012. Details can be found at http://bestlawfirms.usnews.com.

The “Best Law Firms” rankings are now in their third year. Firms were ranked nationally in one or more of 80 legal practice areas and by metropolitan region or state in 118 practice areas. In order to be selected as a “Best Law Firm”, the firm must have consistently impressive performance ratings by clients and peers, signaling a unique combination of excellence and breadth of expertise. The mission of “Best Law Firms” is to help guide referring lawyers and clients – from the country’s largest companies requiring corporate legal advice to individuals seeking counsel regarding personal legal issues. The Davis Firm is proud to have achieved this recognition.

 

The American College of Trial Lawyers 2012 Annual Meeting

Don Taylor and his wife, Robin, attended the 2012 Annual Meeting of the American College of Trial Lawyers on October 18-21 at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. Speakers at the meeting included the Solicitor General of the United States, Donald B. Verrilli, Jr.; Director of the FBI, Robert S. Mueller, III; Deputy Chief Justice Constitutional Court of South Africa, Honourable Justice Dikgang Moseneke; and Justices of the Supreme Court of Canada, Honourable Madam Justice Rosalie Silberrman Abella and Honourable Mr. Justice Michael J. Moldaver, among others. The American College of Trial Lawyers was founded in 1950 and is dedicated to maintaining and improving the standards of trial practice, the administration of justice and the ethics of the profession. Fellowship is extended by invitation only and membership can never exceed 1% of the attorneys in the state. Both Sidney P. Davis, Jr., and Don A. Taylor are fellows of the College.

Davis Firm Litigates Charities’ Rights to Inheritance

The Davis Firm has successfully completed the pro bono representation of the Fayetteville Public Library Foundation and St. Paul’s Episcopal Church.

Bernice Dunaway, a patron of the Library and a member of St. Paul’s, died in 2009 leaving a will directing her estate be split between these two charities. Her estate was comprised of her residence in Fayetteville and a modest amount of cash. The estate was administered for 1½ years without any notice to the beneficiaries, during which time Ms. Dunaway’s 2100 square foot house was sold by the executor for $35,000. At the end of administration and months after the house had sold, the Church and Library received their first notice that they were beneficiaries of the estate in the form of a tender of the sum of $13,000 each. This represented the splitting of what was left from the proceeds of the sale of the house after costs of administration and fees for the attorney and Executor.

 

The Davis firm made a pro bono informal inquiry for the charities, which showed that the house sold by the estate for $35,000 was carried on the county tax rolls at an appraised value of $160,000, and had been insured by the executor for $200,000. After unsuccessful efforts to resolve the matter, the Davis Law Firm proceeded to file suit on behalf of the Church and Library to recover funds lost by the executor’s failure to perform duties and the purchaser’s unjust enrichment in paying such a low purchase price. Late in the second day of trial, the parties reached a mutual agreement resolving the claims. The terms of the settlement are confidential, but were obviously acceptable to the Church and Library.

 

The Davis Law Firm was pleased to provide this public service to the Fayetteville Public Library Foundation and its patrons, and St. Paul’s Episcopal Church and its congregation. Rule 6.1 of the Arkansas Rules of Professional Conduct provides that a lawyer should aspire to render at least 50 hours of legal services without fee per year to persons of limited means or charitable or religious organizations in matters that are designed to address the needs of persons of limited means. Library and Church representatives testified at the trial that any settlement proceeds would be used, in the case of the Library, to further its mission of serving its 68,000 cardholders in the Fayetteville area, and with respect to the Church, to augment its missions in the Fayetteville area for persons having special needs.

The Firm’s attorneys Connie Clark, Will Clark and Jack Butt spent approximately 130 hours providing this pro bono representation, representing legal fees of approximately $25,000 in accomplishing the settlement for these clients.

Davis Law Firm Trial Attorney Receives W.A. Eldredge Jr. Award

 

On July 27, 2012, Colin M. Johnson received the W.A. Eldredge Jr. Award for the Outstanding Young Trial Lawyer, 2011-2012, at the annual meeting of the Arkansas Association of Defense Counsel (AADC).

The award was established in 1990 by Friday, Eldredge & Clark LLP to recognize an outstanding young trial lawyer who best demonstrates exemplary trial conduct, undivided loyalty to clients, courtesy and candor to opposing counsel, respect for trial judges and professional dignity for the administration of justice. The recipient is selected by a committee composed of the Arkansas Bar Foundation president, the AADC president, a Friday, Eldredge & Clark LLP representative and two at-large members.

Colin graduated from the University of Arkansas School of Law in 2007 and immediately joined Davis, Clark, Butt, Carithers & Taylor, PLC, becoming a partner in the firm in 2012. Colin engages in a general civil trial practice with an emphasis in medical malpractice defense. He has received the ranking of AV-Preeminent from Martindale-Hubbell.

 

 

July 2012–

Joshua D. McFadden has been appointed to the Long Range Planning Committee and Jurisprudence and Law Reform Committee of the Arkansas Bar Association by 2012-2013 President Charles L. Harwell of Springdale. The appointments became effective July 1, 2012.

The Arkansas Bar Association is a voluntary, statewide Association with more than 5,000 attorney members. The Association and its members participate in a variety of programs and services for the legal profession and society. Among the purposes of the Association are advancing the administration of justice in Arkansas and fostering high ideals of integrity, learning and public service among its members. The Arkansas Bar Association was founded in 1898.

June 2012–

Several attorneys from our firm attended the recent annual meeting of the Arkansas Bar Association in Hot Springs, Arkansas.  The purpose of the Arkansas Bar Association is to improve the legal process and to advance law and order in Arkansas.

Joshua McFadden was elected to represent District A2 (Washington County) as a delegate to the Arkansas Bar Association House of Delegates.  The Arkansas Bar Association House of Delegates is the policy making body of the Association.  As such, the House of Delegates is responsible for overseeing the Arkansas Board of Governors’ management of the Association, adopting Association By-Laws and policies, and voting to send proposed revisions of pending legislation to the Arkansas General Assembly for its consideration.

Defense Verdict in Peak v. Washington Regional Medical Center Following 8-day Jury Trial–

On May 2, 2012, Davis Law Firm partners Kelly Carithers and Colin Johnson obtained a defense verdict on behalf of Washington Regional Medical Center, following an eight-day jury trial. The medical malpractice lawsuit, which was pending in front of Hon. Kim M. Smith in Washington County Circuit Court, was filed on behalf of a minor child who allegedly suffered a stroke and severe brain injury while a patient at Washington Regional Medical Center. The lawsuit also initially included claims for alleged violation of the Arkansas Deceptive Trade Practices Act, Endangering the Welfare of a Minor, Breach of Contract, and Breach of Fiduciary Duty, but Mrs. Carithers and Mr. Johnson were successful in getting each of these superfluous claims dismissed even before the case went to trial.

 

On April 23, 2012, the jury trial commenced with the selection and seating of the jury followed by opening statements. As the trial proceeded, the jury heard testimony from a dozen different witnesses, five of whom were medical expert witnesses. After hearing all of the testimony and closing arguments from the parties, the jury retired to deliberate its verdict. Although the trial lasted nearly eight full days, it took the jury less than 25 minutes to return with unanimous defense verdicts in favor of Washington Regional Medical Center and the two local pediatricians who had also been named in the suit.

May 2012–

Sidney P. Davis, Jr., was recently honored as a distinguished alumnus by Henderson State University during its commencement ceremonies.  Mr. Davis graduated at the top of his class from Henderson in 1953 with a degree in mathematics.  He was also senior class president and a member of Kappa Sigma Kappa.  He later attended the University of Arkansas School of Law and began practicing in 1960 at this firm.  His younger brother, James Davis, was also honored at the Henderson State commencement ceremonies.

January 2012–

The Davis firm is pleased to announce new Martindale Hubbell ratings for 4 of its lawyers for 2012.   Casey Lawson and Colin Johnson were recently rated “AV Pre-eminent,” ranking them at the highest level of professional excellence.  Josh McFadden and David Dixon were rated “BV Distinguished.”  Of the 9 firm lawyers who have practiced long enough to be Martindale Hubbell  rated, 7 are now rated “AV Pre-eminent” and 2  are rated “BV Distinguished.”  We are honored to be recognized by our peers in this fashion. Martindale Hubbell ratings have a long, respected, and functional history within the legal profession.

 

The Martindale Hubbell law directory began over 140 years ago, its purpose being  “to furnish to lawyers, bankers, wholesale merchants, manufacturers, real estate agents, and all others . . . the address of one reliable law firm, one reliable bank, and one reliable real estate office in every city in the United States. . . .”  It has continued since then to be the standard reference within the legal profession for lawyers’ legal abilities as rated by their peers.

 

The Martindale-Hubbell® PEER REVIEW RATINGS™ are an objective indicator of a lawyer’s high ethical standards and professional ability, generated from evaluations of lawyers by other members of the bar and the judiciary in the United States and Canada. The first review to establish a lawyer’s rating usually occurs three years after his/her first admission to the bar.  In confidential surveys of lawyers in similar areas of practice as the lawyer being rated, reviewers are asked to assess their colleagues’ general ethical standards and legal ability in a specific area of practice.  The ratings reflect a combination of achieving a Very High General Ethical Standards rating and a Legal Ability numerical rating. A threshold number of responses is required to achieve a rating.

 

The General Ethical Standards rating denotes adherence to professional standards of conduct and ethics, reliability, diligence and other criteria relevant to the discharge of professional responsibilities. Those lawyers who meet the “Very High” criteria of General Ethical Standards can proceed to the next step in the ratings process – Legal Ability.

 

Legal Ability ratings are based on performance in five key areas, rated on a scale of 1 to 5 (with 1 being the lowest and 5 being the highest). These areas are:

  • Legal Knowledge – Lawyer’s familiarity with the laws governing his/her specific area of practice(s)
  • Analytical Capabilities – Lawyer’s creativity in analyzing legal issues and applying technical knowledge
  • Judgment – Lawyer’s demonstration of the salient factors that drive the outcome of a given case or issue.
  • Communication Ability – Lawyer’s capability to communicate persuasively and credibly
  • Legal Experience – Lawyer’s degree of experience in his/her specific area of practice(s)

 

The numeric ratings range may coincide with the appropriate Certification Mark:

  • AV Preeminent (4.5-5.0)– AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment – a testament to the fact that a lawyer’s peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence.
  • BV Distinguished (3.0-4.4) – BV Distinguished is an excellent rating for a lawyer with some experience. A widely respected mark of achievement, it differentiates a lawyer from his or her competition.
  • Rated (1.0-2.9) – The Peer Review Rated designation demonstrates that the lawyer has met the very high criteria of General Ethical Standing.

 

New Partners Mark the New Year–

After 4½ years experience as associates with the firm, Josh McFadden and Colin Johnson accepted an invitation to become partners for 2012 in the Davis Law Firm, with the opportunity to share in firm management and profits. The Firm is pleased and proud to have them as partners based upon their demonstrated legal competence over the last several years.

Designations within law firms of its participants are only vaguely defined in the legal world. Such designations include “partner,” “principal,” “member,” “associate” and “of counsel.” Each firm determines the designations they wish to use and how lawyers within the firm are designated. Very generally, “partners,” “principals” and “members” have an equity ownership in the firm, management participation or both. “Associates” are typically employees or contractors who work for the firm, but have no ownership or management participation. “Of counsel” can be used to indicate many things: a semi-retired former partner, a contractor of the firm, an attorney whose participation in the firm is limited to specialized areas, a part-time lawyer, or simply an honorary title of affiliation with the firm.

 

At The Davis Firm, “associates” are hired as employees to practice law under the supervision of the partners who own the firm. Typically, associates are hired competitively from top recent law school graduates, after they pass the Arkansas Bar examination and are admitted to the Arkansas Bar as a practicing lawyer. Associates are sometimes hired laterally, coming from other practices, firms or experience. Associates are fully licensed and competent to practice law, and take cases and matters within their experience and skills under the mentorship of partners in the firm. After several years of demonstrating good judgment, high intellect, strong work ethic, and personal relationship skills within the firm, with clients, and the community at large, an associate is invited to become a partner in the firm, to be heard and vote on management matters, and participate in earnings through profit-share rather than salary.

The Davis Law Firm is a limited liability company (Davis, Clark, Butt, Carithers & Taylor, PLC) and thus, its “partners” are, under Arkansas law, “members” of the limited liability company. Historically, an associate who meets the qualifications is offered a partnership in the firm within 4-6 years after joining.