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Top local law firm, three national firms partner to create ground-breaking mega-firm

June 20, 2000 Press Releases

CONTACT: Sydnie Moore (619) 283-8896


Plaintiffs’ lawyers to practice nationally as Herman, Middleton, Casey & Kitchens

SAN DIEGO, Calif. — Casey Gerry Reed & Schenk, a prominent plaintiffs’ law firm in San Diego, has joined forces with three top national firms to form Herman Middleton Casey & Kitchens, a national superfirm specializing in high-profile consumer actions against corporate defendants.

The venture, in which four individual law firms serve as partners in a larger company, is believed to be one of the first of its kind among law firms specializing in plaintiff representation.

San Diego’s Casey Gerry pioneered the effort along with Herman, Herman, Katz & Cotlar of New Orleans; Middleton, Mathis, Adams & Tate of Savannah, Ga. and Kitchens & Ellis of Jackson, Miss. The resulting superfirm is a limited liability partnership based in Atlanta and licensed to practice law in Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and California. Its first case involved representing World War II veteran and former Japanese POW Lester Tenney, a San Diego resident who alleged he was forced into labor by a Japanese mining corporation.

According to David Casey, a senior partner with Casey Gerry Reed & Schenk who helped spearhead this novel arrangement, “the venture represents an opportunity to expand our scope of representation while retaining the flexibility of a smaller firm. It also provides us with the internal resources and financial ability required to represent consumer interests on a national level.”

According to Casey, a well-known San Diego attorney who specializes in serious personal injury, wrongful death and business and consumer fraud cases, plaintiff law firms often find it necessary to join forces to tackle complex, multiparty litigation, but such alliances usually last for just one or two cases. “Joining forces for a single case does not create an incentive to develop a solid infrastructure or consistent image, ” Casey said. “Temporary alliances often result in infighting over designated roles and organizational issues, detracting from the attorneys’ abilities to focus on the case at hand. Our firm’s structure eliminates those external issues, allowing us to devote ourselves to the case.”

The merger is unique in the world of plaintiffs’ law, where lawyers typically shun joining large, national firms. “Trial lawyers have tremendous egos and they like running their own shop,” Casey adds. “But we’ve all spent the last 15 or 20 years trying to keep the civil justice system open to consumers. All the attorneys involved have been in the trenches together, and there is a great deal of respect and trust to build on.”

Led by chairman Russ Herman, partners David Casey, Maury Herman, Jim Kitchens and Richard Middleton will help oversee all Herman Middleton affairs, with well-known Atlanta trial lawyer Edward Konieczny serving as managing partner.

Established in 1947, Casey Gerry Reed & Schenk is the oldest plaintiffs’

Law firm in San Diego. The firm’s eleven attorneys practice in various areas, including personal injury, business torts, medical malpractice, asbestos litigation, maritime law, class actions and products liability. The firm is located at 110 Laurel Street in the Banker’s Hill neighborhood of San Diego.

For more information, call (619) 238-1811 or Contact Us online.