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Leo Bearman Jr.

Senior Counsel

Leo Bearman Jr. is an experienced litigator who has represented clients in civil litigation, class action defense, antitrust matters, insurance defense litigation, products liability defense, intellectual property litigation, professional negligence defense and commercial litigation.

Professional Biography


Mr. Bearman is a shareholder in the Memphis office, and has represented city and county governments as well as a number of national, regional and local companies.

Mr. Bearman is a well-known speaker and writer. A native Memphian, he has been significantly involved in the Memphis community. His professional leadership is equally notable and includes former membership of the Tennessee Supreme Court Advisory Commission on drafting Rules of Evidence for the State of Tennessee, Supreme Court Advisory Commission on amending the Tennessee Rules of Civil Procedure, and the Tennessee Supreme Court Disciplinary Board Hearing Committee.

Mr. Bearman acted as counsel in a significant patent case representing the world leader in medical technology. The trial was held in the United States District Court in Memphis and deemed the longest running trial in the history of the Western District of Tennessee. As part of the outcome, the jury granted our client's request for the right to continue to use the technology and intellectual property at issue, which is the cornerstone of its highly profitable $1.8 billion-a-year spinal business.

Representative Matters
  • Successfully defended a physician hospital organization against claims that it conspired to boycott a surgery center and two of its physician investors from the outpatient surgery market in the Memphis area in violation of the Sherman Act, as well as state law unfair competition and tortious interference claims in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas.

Professional Honors & Activities
  • Named a Benchmark Litigation "Local Litigation Star" for Tennessee and "Sixth Circuit Star" for Tennessee, Appellate (2014)
  • Named to Memphis Business Quarterly's Power Players (2010 and 2011)
  • Named "Litigator of the Year" by Tennessee Bar Association's Litigation Section in its inaugural award (2009)
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America® in Alternative Dispute Resolution, Appellate Law, Bet-the-Company Litigation, Commercial Litigation, Legal Malpractice Law, Medical Malpractice Law, Personal Injury Litigation, Product Liability Litigation, Securities, Mass Tort, Mediation and Professional Malpractice Law since 1993
  • Named the Best Lawyers' "Lawyer of the Year" in Memphis Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions - Defendants (2013); Appellate Practice for Memphis (2012, 2014, 2019); Medical Malpractice for Memphis (2011); Bet-the-Company Litigation for Memphis (2010); and in Personal Injury Litigation (2009); only a single lawyer in each specialty in each community is honored   
  • Listed in Chambers USA: America's Leading Business Lawyers since 2004
  • Listed as among top 50 attorneys in Memphis and among top 100 attorneys in Tennessee by Mid-South Super Lawyers since 2006
  • AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Recipient ­–Lewis F. Powell Jr. Award for Professionalism and Ethics, The American Inns of Court (2020)
  • Recipient ­– Business Economic Trade Association's Economic Impact Award (2017)
  • Recipient ­– Pillars of Excellence Award, University of Memphis, Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law, Alumni Chapter (2011)
  • Named to Business Tennessee magazine's "150 Best Lawyers" in the area of civil litigation (2009, 2010)
  • Named to the Lawdragon 3000 (2010)
  • Former President ­– Tennessee Junior Bar Association
  • Former President ­– Memphis and Shelby County Bar Association
  • Fellow ­– American College of Trial Lawyers
  • Elected Member ­– International Association of Insurance Counsel (November 1, 1980)
  • Elected Member ­– American Academy of Appellate Lawyers (1995)
  • Recipient ­– MBA "Lawyer's Lawyer Award" (1989)
  • Recipient ­– Sam A. Myar, Jr. Memorial Award (1968)
  • Honorary Chairman ­– Annual Campaign, Memphis State Law School (1991 – 1992 and 1992 – 1993)
  • Honorary Chairman ­– Annual Campaign for the Memphis State Law Library (1991 – 1992)
  • Life Member ­– Fellows of the American Bar Foundation since 1987
  • Member ­– American Board of Trial Advocates
  • Member ­– Memphis, Shelby County, Tennessee and American Bar Associations
  • Adjunct Professor of Law ­– University of Memphis Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law
Speaking Engagements
  • Moderator – U.S. Supreme Court Ruling Zivotofsky v. Kerry Discussion, Temple Israel, Memphis, Tennessee (April 2018)
Press Releases


  • Harvard University Law School, J.D., 1960
  • Yale University, A.B., 1957, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa


  • Tennessee, 1960
  • Supreme Court of the United States of America, 1973
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, 1963
  • All Appellate Courts for the State of Tennessee, 1960
  • All U.S. District Courts for the State of Tennessee, 1960

Leo Bearman regularly represents clients in a range of disputes, including class action and insurance defense lawsuits. Market commentators describe him as 'a brilliant guy' and 'very experienced' practitioner.

Memphis-based Leo Bearman is described by market sources as a 'charming, lovely and brilliant guy.' He possesses a vast amount of experience representing government entities as well as multistate companies in a wide range of litigation issues such as class actions and product liability defense, intellectual property and professional negligence matters.

Leo Bearman is regarded as 'an extremely skilled trial lawyer,' whose practice spans commercial, product liability, insurance and professional negligence litigation. He often represents city and county governments, and recently defended the City of Memphis and the Memphis Light, Gas & Water Division against allegations of stealing Mississippi's water from an aquifer.

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