The American Lawyer Selects Shook as Product Liability Litigation Department of the Year

The American Lawyer has named Shook, Hardy & Bacon its 2012 Product Liability Litigation Department of the Year, marking the third consecutive honor Shook has received in this biennial competition for the nation’s 200 largest law firms. The firm was named winner and finalist in the same competition in 2008 and 2010, respectively.

“A deep bench of first-chair trial lawyers has given Shook, Hardy the ability to try multiple product liability cases around the country simultaneously and in a variety of fields, from tobacco to pharmaceuticals,” The American Lawyer reported in its January 2012 issue. “Given that track record, it's not surprising that Shook has been a regular in the product liability section of the Litigation Department of the Year contest.”

The American Lawyer noted that the depth of talent in Shook’s product liability practice, paired with a flexible and efficient staffing strategy, allows the firm’s lawyers to “try cases wherever they’re needed.”

“On a single day in October, the firm achieved defense verdicts for client Philip Morris USA Inc. in two separate cases in Florida, while also representing the tobacco company at trial in an Alaska town that is only accessible by boat or plane,” The American Lawyer reported. “And on the same October day, the firm was preparing for trial in New Jersey for Tyco International Ltd., another longtime client.”

“What separated Shook from the pack this year, and helped it take top honors again, was the additional trial load represented by the string of cases in Florida against cigarette manufacturers,” The American Lawyer added, referencing Shook’s lead role in the Engle-progeny litigation. “More of those trials—22—have been defended by Shook than any other firm.”

Murray Garnick, Associate General Counsel at Altria Group Inc., praised the firm for its results in the litigation. “These cases command a lot of case management attention because there are so many of them, but since we are trying them, they also require trial skills,” Garnick said. “Shook has delivered for us on both fronts.”

The American Lawyer evaluated firms for its Product Liability Litigation Department of the Year contest based on results achieved from January 1, 2010, through July 31, 2011. In addition to citing Shook’s work in the Engle-progeny litigation, The American Lawyer commended the firm for its successful representation of clients such as Akzo Nobel, Mylan, Inc., Pfizer, Inc., Tyco International, General Dynamics Corp., and Lockheed Martin Corp.

To view The American Lawyer article, please click here.