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Baker Donelson Expands with Addition of Six Louisiana Attorneys

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(New Orleans, LA/April 30, 2010) Six attorneys with extensive experience in health law and litigation have joined the Louisiana offices of Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC. All of the attorneys previously practiced with McGlinchey Stafford, PLLC.

"This is a significant expansion of our Louisiana presence," says Roy C. Cheatwood, managing shareholder of the Firm's Louisiana offices. "Bringing in such a quality group of attorneys ensures we continue to broaden our offering, particularly in the field of health care law."

Three of the attorneys have joined in the Firm's New Orleans office.

  • Monica A. Frois: Ms. Frois, who joins as a shareholder, has 20 years of experience in health care matters as well as complex litigation, insurance issues, legal ethics and professional responsibility litigation. She represents hospitals, physicians, nursing homes and other health care providers in operational, compliance, regulatory and transactional issues as well as a wide variety of litigation. She has served on the Medical/Legal Interprofessional Committee of the Louisiana State Medical Society and the Louisiana State Bar Association, and has held various offices in the Medical Defense and Health Law Committee of the International Association of Defense Counsel, an invitation-only professional association of top corporate and insurance defense lawyers around the world. Ms. Frois, who previously served as head of McGlinchey Stafford's New Orleans health care group, has been recognized as a leading attorney in her field by The Best Lawyers in America® and Louisiana Super Lawyers and holds an AV® Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell, the highest possible recognition for legal ability and ethical standards.
  • Craig L. Caesar: An experienced trial and appellate attorney concentrating on complex business disputes, Mr. Caesar joins the Firm as of counsel. He represents clients in state and federal litigation involving health care, antitrust and trade regulation, including intellectual property matters, corporate governance, and state and local tax litigation. Mr. Caesar's honors include being recognized as a leading attorney in his field by The Best Lawyers in America® and Louisiana Super Lawyers. A Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America, he also holds an AV® Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell.
  • Brandy N. Sheely: Ms. Sheely, who joins as an associate, concentrates her practice primarily in health care litigation, specifically in the representation of health care providers in medical malpractice and contract dispute claims. For the past two years she has served as counsel to the Louisiana State Board of Examiners of Psychologists in connection with disciplinary actions and investigations. Ms. Sheely's practice also includes business, bankruptcy and commercial litigation, including the representation of secured creditors in connection with the enforcement and/or protection of their security interests in state, federal and bankruptcy courts. She is a Legal Affiliate Member of the Louisiana Hospital Association, was recently elected as the New Orleans District Director for the Society of Hospital Attorneys, is a member of the American Bar Association Health Law Section, and is a member of the Medical Liability and Health Care Law Committee of DRI.

The other three attorneys have joined Baker Donelson's Baton Rouge office.

  • Errol J. King Jr.: Joining as shareholder, Mr. King focuses his practice primarily in the representation of managed care organizations, including provider contracting, risk management, state and federal regulatory issues and health care litigation, including ERISA cases. In April 1996, he was appointed by the Louisiana Commissioner of Insurance to serve as general counsel and an initial member of the Louisiana Managed Care Advisory Board, which advises the commissioner on managed care issues impacting the state. Mr. King previously served as vice chair of the HMOs and Health Plans Substantive Law Committee of the American Health Lawyers Association. A member of the Federation of Regulatory Counsel and active in the leadership of the Louisiana Association of Health Plans, he holds an AV® Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell and has been recognized as a leading health care law attorney by The Best Lawyers in America® for the last ten years.
  • Layna S. Cook: Ms. Cook, who joins as of counsel, represents clients in health care regulatory matters and litigation. Her practice includes advising clients on state and federal regulations that affect health care entities and representing clients before a wide variety of regulatory and licensing agencies. She represents clients in health care-related litigation in both state and federal courts. A frequent speaker on the topic of privacy and medical records, Ms. Cook has extensive experience advising clients on state and federal privacy laws, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).
  • Daniel P. Guillory: Joining as an associate, Mr. Guillory assists in litigation matters involving managed care organizations and insurance entities, including contract disputes, enforcement of subrogation rights and denial of benefits cases. His experience also includes assisting health care providers in medical malpractice litigation. Mr. Guillory is a member of the American Health Lawyers Association.

"Baker Donelson's strategic long-term goal is to continually add attorneys who are recognized leaders in their field. The addition of these highly qualified attorneys is certainly in keeping with that strategy," says Mr. Cheatwood. "We're pleased that, as we continue to grow our Louisiana presence, we are able to do so by bringing in such a notable group of professionals with solid experience and outstanding reputations."

"With more than 570 attorneys, Baker Donelson offers us enhanced resources across a broader range of practice areas to better meet the needs of our clients," says Monica A. Frois. "The Firm's depth of service and extensive support structure are tremendous assets that will greatly benefit our clients."

As the 73rd largest law firm in the U.S., Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC, gives clients access to a team of more than 570 attorneys and public policy advisors representing more than 30 practice areas to serve a wide range of legal needs. Clients receive knowledgeable guidance from experienced, multi-disciplined industry and client service teams, all seamlessly connected across 15 offices in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee and Washington, D.C.

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