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Steven F. Griffith Jr.

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Steve Griffith is co-chair of the Business Litigation Group, serves on Baker Donelson's Board of Directors, and is a member of the Firm's Audit and Finance Committee.

Featured Experience

Served as trial counsel defending a bad faith breach of contract claim seeking in excess of $4 million in damages and penalties. Obtained a defense verdict in favor of the client and an award against the plaintiff for damages.

Trial counsel in various engagements across the country regarding multi-million dollar partnership disputes alleging breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud and similar theories of recovery.

Defended a RICO claim and related business torts seeking in excess of $200 million in damages; based on motion practice, and in exchange for withdrawing pending sanctions motions against the plaintiff, client was voluntarily dismissed from the suit without payment of money.

Professional Biography

Overview

Steve manages the relationship with several clients that entrust the Firm with disputes throughout the Southeast or nationwide. He has represented or advised clients regarding matters in more than 35 states.

Prior to practicing, he served as judicial clerk for Chief Justice Pascal F. Calogero Jr., in the Louisiana Supreme Court from 2000 to 2001.

Representative Trials
  • Engaged by a sitting judge and his former law partner to pursue a fee dispute against an attorney formerly associated with the firm, who took cases from the firm following his departure. Following an eight-day trial, obtained judgment in excess of $1.1 million (the full demand) in favor of our clients, which was more than four times the pre-trial offer of settlement from the defendant. (Read more.)

  • After trial, obtained dismissal of a bankruptcy filed by a General Partner attempting to gain leverage in buy-out negotiations with the manager of Limited Partner interests in a portfolio of low-income housing tax credit partnerships valued at more than $100 million. (Read more.)

  • Served as trial counsel defending a bad faith breach of contract claim seeking in excess of $4 million in damages and penalties. Obtained a defense verdict in favor of the client and an award against the plaintiff for damages.

Representative Matters
  • Business Litigation

  • Trial counsel in various engagements across the country regarding multi-million dollar partnership disputes alleging breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud and similar theories of recovery.

  • Defended a RICO claim and related business torts seeking in excess of $200 million in damages; based on motion practice, and in exchange for withdrawing pending sanctions motions against the plaintiff, client was voluntarily dismissed from the suit without payment of money.

  • Employment

  • Defended an international contractor in primary and copycat matters alleging nationwide FLSA and state law class action claims, resulting in the client incurring no out-of-pocket settlement contribution or attorneys' fees.

  • Lead counsel in the defense of nationwide, statewide and local FLSA collective actions alleging misclassification or inadequate pay of employees pending in Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, Florida, Michigan, and Virginia.

  • Negotiated the transition of senior executives and department managers out of the client's employment, resolving whistleblower claims as part of the agreements.

  • Extensive experience in enforcing or invalidating non-compete and non-solicitation agreements in different parts of the country.

  • Injunction

  • Obtained emergency injunctions in breach of contract actions requiring enforcement through the seizure of vessels in coordination with United States Marshals and private, armed security detail across state lines.

  • Obtained emergency injunctions recovering stolen business records and trade secrets by former business partners and employees.

  • Defended attempts to enjoin clients from enforcing non-compete or other business terms across state lines.

  • Internal Investigations

  • Handled internal investigations regarding employees at all levels – from Chief Executive Officers to receptionists – involving allegations of harassment, theft and other concerns.

  • Investigated sensitive allegations for employers implicating insurance fraud, NERC, FAA and other regulatory schemes.

  • Managed investigations involving regulatory concerns of criminal conduct, environmental violations and the death of employees.

Professional Honors & Activities
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America® in Labor and Employment Litigation (since 2012); Construction Litigation (since 2013); Employment Law - Management (since 2015)
  • Listed in Chambers USA: America's Leading Business Lawyers as a leading Labor & Employment lawyer since 2010
  • Listed in Louisiana Super Lawyers in Civil Litigation: Defense (2014 – 2019); listed as among top 50 attorneys in Louisiana (2016 – 2019); listed as among top 50 attorneys in New Orleans (2016 – 2019)
  • Listed as a Louisiana Rising Star in Louisiana Super Lawyers (2013)
  • Leadership in Law Class of 2013, New Orleans CityBusiness
  • Recognized as a "Top Lawyer" by New Orleans Magazine in Labor and Employment Law (2013, 2016, 2017)
  • Member – Federal Bar Association (Board Member, New Orleans Chapter)
  • Recording Secretary – Federal Bar Association, New Orleans Chapter (current); previously Membership Chair and National Government Liaison
  • Member – American, Louisiana and New Orleans Bar Associations
  • Member – Fifth Circuit Bar Association
  • Member – Thomas More Inn of Court
  • Member – Society for Human Resource Management
  • Recipient – Baker Donelson Louisiana Pro Bono Attorney of the Year (2007)
Civic Activities
  • Volunteer – New Orleans Pro Bono Project
  • Fellow – Louisiana Bar Foundation (Member, Grants Committee)
  • Member – Louisiana Supreme Court Historical Society
  • Member – Save Our Cemeteries
  • Member – Hurstville Neighborhood Association
  • Volunteer and Firm Liaison – Habitat for Humanity
  • Former President – St. Martin's Episcopal School Alumni Association
Publications
Speaking Engagements
  • "A Winning To-Do List for Employers: Motivate, Manage and Minimize Risk (New Orleans)" (June 2016)
  • "Mergers & Acquisitions Basics: Employment Law," Tax Executives Institute, Inc., New Orleans Chapter (April, 2014)
  • "Federal and Louisiana Employment Law Update," Louisiana Society of Human Resource Management, Annual State Conference, New Orleans, Louisiana (April, 2012)
  • "Top Ten Ways to Avoid Employment Litigation," New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (March, 2012)
  • "Ten Employment Pitfalls Faced by Start-Up Companies," Collaborative for Enterprise Development, Idea Village, New Orleans, Louisiana (November, 2011)
  • "Top Ten Mistakes by Contractors," National Association for Women in Construction, Region 5 Annual Forum, New Orleans, Louisiana (April, 2011)
  • "Privacy and Social Media in the Workplace," National Association for Women in Construction, Region 5 Annual Forum, New Orleans, Louisiana (April, 2011)
  • "The Nuts and Bolts: FLSA/Wage and Hour Critical Update," 5th Annual Fundamentals of Employment Law, Sterling Educational Series (February 2011)
  • "Privacy and Social Media in the Workplace," 5th Annual Fundamentals of Employment Law, Sterling Educational Series (February, 2011)
  • "The Cutting Edge - Chinese Drywall: The Homeowner Carriers' Perspective," 15th Annual Texas Insurance Law Symposium, South Texas College of Law (January, 2011)
Press Releases

Education

  • Loyola School of Law, J.D., 2000, magna cum laude
    • William L. Crowe Sr. Scholar
    • Law Review
    • Moot Court
  • Rhodes College, B.A., 1997, cum laude
    • Dean's list

Admissions

  • Louisiana
  • Arkansas, pro hac vice
  • Florida, pro hac vice
  • Kansas, pro hac vice
  • Texas, pro hac vice
  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • United States Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals
  • United States District Courts, Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of Louisiana
  • United States District Court, Northern District of Alabama, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Arkansas, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Western District of Arkansas, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Middle District of Florida, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Southern District of Florida, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, District of Massachusetts, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, District of Minnesota, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Southern District of Mississippi, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Missouri, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Northern District of Ohio, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Southern District of Ohio, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Oklahoma, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Western District of Oklahoma, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Tennessee, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Western District of Tennessee, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Texas, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Southern District of Texas, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Eastern District of Virginia, pro hac vice
  • United States District Court, Southern District of West Virginia, pro hac vice

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