Stone Pigman is uniquely qualified to take on complex appellate challenges. The firm hires only the top law graduates who have proven their mastery of legal writing and analysis. We have extensive experience handling appeals at all levels in federal and state courts. These appeals have involved a wide variety of legal issues, including false advertising claims, administrative and regulatory law issues, class action certification, Louisiana property and succession law disputes and the constitutionality of statutes.
We have achieved a reputation for superior skill in handling appeals. Two of our members have been selected into the prestigious American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, an organization of selected appellate specialists that includes only six New Orleans attorneys. One member was named Best Lawyers' 2012 New Orleans Lawyer of the Year in Appellate Practice. A member has written two books on appellate brief writing and oral argument, one of which is used widely in legal instruction. Stone Pigman attorneys teach Continuing Legal Education courses in appellate advocacy. Many of our attorneys were previously law clerks for appellate and trial judges.
Stone Pigman attorneys have appeared and argued in the United States Supreme Court, United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, Louisiana Supreme Court, and intermediate appellate courts. We take our professional role in appeals seriously. Senior lawyers write their own legal briefs, with help and input from others. We write to synthesize and simplify a compelling legal point or points that will resonate with busy judges.
Our appellate attorneys recognize the unique challenges presented in appellate work, including the need to make focused, cogent arguments on a limited record and tight time frames. We are ably equipped to face these difficulties head on. We handle appeals from state and federal court judgments, as well as extraordinary writs of review and petitions for certiorari. We are often involved with potential appellate issues at the trial and post-trial levels, including the preservation of issues for appeal through pre-trial and post-trial motion practice, the lodging of the proper objections and advocacy during trial, and the taking of necessary interlocutory appeals.
The Stone Pigman appellate practice group members are attorneys with extensive trial litigation as well as appellate experience. The trial experience provides our appellate attorneys the solid foundation necessary for understanding the critical appeal issues and clearly explaining them to the appellate court. Drawing on this experience, our appellate attorneys are creative and thoughtful advocates, known for their concise, direct way of addressing issues. We have a proven track record of success before appellate judges.
Recent appellate work in Louisiana and federal courts has included:
- Obtained reversals of decisions of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, producing more than $70 million in refunds to consumers.
- Successfully represented a major national research university in the Louisiana Supreme Court and the Louisiana Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal in a difficult and contentious dispute involving the heirs of a college founder when the college merged with the research university after a natural disaster.
- Successfully argued to the Louisiana Supreme Court as amicus attorney on an issue involving state regulatory interpretation and collection of amounts due for medication provided under the Louisiana Workers' Compensation Act.
- Representing a credit union attempting to enforce a loan guarantee against the Louisiana State Department of Agriculture.
- Representing the owner of a natural gas storage facility in a multi-million dollar dispute regarding real estate commissions.
- In the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, obtained affirmance of summary judgment in favor of the owner of a painting in a dispute as to the painting's provenance arising out of conditions in Nazi-controlled Germany.
- As appellate counsel for insurance companies, pursuing and opposing multiple appeals of partial judgments regarding Hurricane Katrina property damage claims.
- Representing a major railway company against the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in an employment discrimination lawsuit.
- After Hurricane Katrina, succeeded in obtaining favorable appellate judgments in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit for a leading national property and casualty insurer on several key issues regarding coverage and allegations of collusion in the insurance industry.
- Successfully represented a building owner in the Louisiana Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal and the Louisiana Supreme Court defending against a corporation's challenge to her rights of ownership.
- Representing property owners in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit against the United States in a jurisdictional dispute over where their claims for compensation due to a governmental taking should be adjudicated.
- Successfully representing the Louisiana Public Defender Board before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in a dispute raising constitutional challenges to fees assessed against criminal defendants to fund public defender offices state-wide.
- Representing the Louisiana Attorney Disciplinary Board in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in upholding Louisiana's attorney advertising rules against constitutional challenge.
- Successfully representing a succession in the Louisiana Second Circuit Court of Appeal in sustaining a judgment invalidating certain business transactions executed by the decedent.
- On a writ application to the Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeal, successfully obtained a dismissal of all third-party claims asserted against Consulting Services Group, L.L.C. in a complex securities law dispute.