BLG’s John Salter Delivers Fourth of July Sermon

We are very proud when our attorneys are recognized for their impact throughout the local community.  So, we were particularly proud when BLG’s John Salter was asked to deliver the Fourth of July sermon at First United Methodist Church, an annual tradition.

Salter’s sermon has an excellent message for all of us as we celebrate the founding of our great country, and was recently published by the Marietta Daily Journal.

Making It Right for Victims of Predatory Lending

Barnes Law Group possesses particular expertise in the area of consumer fraud.  It’s the core of our practice, and our lawyers have reached multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements in cases involving corporate dishonesty, predatory lending, and accounting fraud. The firm continues its mission to prosecute cases involving unscrupulous, fraudulent, and predatory consumer practices, especially those targeting the elderly, poor, and minorities as victims.

BLG has resolved and is currently handling several cases involving illegal loans that impose excessive and usurious interest rates.  Generally, a “payday loan” transaction involves an advance to a borrower of $500 or less which is due to be repaid within a short period of time, usually two weeks.  The borrower is required to write the lender a check in the amount of the advance, plus an additional fee imposed by the lender for making the loan.  The check is held by the lender until the borrower’s next payday.  The most recent case settled for $4 million.

Payday Lending Cases:
Evans/Reid v. USA Payday Stores
King/Strong v. Advance America

BLG Wins $400 Million for Al-Zarqawi Victims’ Family

On a cool morning in September 2004, Marietta subcontractor Jack Hensley performed a daily ritual: he walked out of his house in United Arab Emirates to start the generator for he and the other subcontractors living there while they helped rebuild Iraq.  But this morning was different.

Jack was surrounded by al-Quaida militants and, along with his fellow housemates, abducted.  A few days later, Jack was gruesomely beaten and beheaded.  His death played out in a video that played across international television screens.

Left to pick up the pieces, Jack’s widow, Pati, and daughter turned to BLG for justice.  In a trial that took place in the United States District Court of the District of Columbia, BLG partners Roy E. Barnes and John F. Salter sued the country of Syria for aiding and supporting the terrorists who abducted and killed Jack.

Judge Rosemary Collyer awarded Pati and the family of another slain American subcontractor over $400 million in damages in 2008.  After two years, the appeals process has finally concluded.

As partner John F. Salter stated, “It is an extraordinary testament to the fortitude of these families. No one should ever have to witness a family member suffering such unspeakable brutality. They hoped the judge’s order would send a message. Together, I think we did exactly that.”

 

DeKalb Teachers Call-in BLG to Make It Right

When DeKalb County School District teachers Elaine Gold and Amy Shaye needed someone to stand up for them, they turned to BLG.  BLG recently brought suit against the district in a class-action on behalf of the two career teachers.

The suit involves a promise made – but not kept – by the district when they stopped contributing to a teacher retirement plan that was part of the teachers’ benefits package.  While the district is within their rights to eliminate the contributions, they are required by their own district policy to give a two-year notice to all teachers affected by the change.  Rather than follow this policy, the district simply stopped paying into the retirement system.

The lawsuit, which was featured in an Atlanta Journal-Constitution article today, simply seeks payment by the district for contributions over the past two years that were never paid.

 

Making It Right for hard-working DeKalb County Teachers

BLG, on behalf of two DeKalb County educators, has filed a class-action lawsuit against the school district and board for failing to make contributions over the last two years to a district employee retirement fund.

“This is about keeping promises the board made to employees” said BLG attorney John Salter.

BLG’s John Salter Named to 2011 Super Lawyers Rising Stars

Congratulations to BLG partner John F. Salter, who was recognized for the fourth time and third year in a row as a Rising Star by Super Lawyers magazine.

Salter was also recognized as a Rising Star in 2006, 2009, and 2010.

Click here to view Salter’s award information on the Super Lawyers webpage.

 

Roy Barnes works with new Governor to Make It Right for slain trooper’s widow

When former Georgia Governor and BLG founding partner Roy Barnes heard about the way Georgia’s insurance laws were treating the recent widow of a Georgia State Trooper who was killed in the line of duty, he decided to do something about it.

He immediately agreed to take Keisha LeCroy’s case pro bono, and then picked up the phone to call newly-elected Governor Nathan Deal. Despite facing each other in the November 2010 Governor’s race, the two quickly developed a plan to introduce a new bill before the Georgia Legislature to change the law.

Current law requires surviving family members of state workers who are killed in the line of duty to pay an increased rate to keep the state insurance policy. Keisha LeCroy would have been required to pay $900 per month for coverage of her and her son.

 

BLG and Gov. Deal Win Benefits for Slain Trooper’s Family

BLG founding partner and former Governor Roy E. Barnes didn’t let politics stand in the way of achieving justice for slain Georgia State Trooper Chadwick LeCroy’s widow and son.

When he heard how the state was effectively ending medical benefits for the trooper’s widow and son, Barnes picked up the phone and called former rival and newly-elected Governor Nathan Deal.

The two worked closely with state legislators to re-write a state law regarding medical coverage of state law enforcement officers.  The proposed law continues medical coverage at the same rate for surviving family members of state law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty.

Today, House Bill 107 passed the Georgia Senate after having passed the House last week, and is now headed to Governor Deal’s desk to be signed into law.

As BLG partner Allison Barnes Salter put it, “This isn’t a partisan issue.  Most Georgians can agree the families of those who gave their life to public service deserve this support.”

 

BLG’s Charlie Tanksley Named to 2010 Georgia Legal Elite

Congratulations to BLG founding partner Charles B. Tanksley, who was recognized as one of Georgia’s “Legal Elite” by Georgia Trend magazine this month.

Tanksley was recognized as one of the best lawyers in Georgia for governmental affairs.

BLG Named to 2010 US News & World Report Best Law Firms

Congratulations to the BLG team.  In their inaugural Best Law Firms publication, US News & World Report ranked BLG a “National Tier 1” and “Atlanta Tier 1” law firm.

This is the first year US News has ranked law firms, and they reviewed nearly 9,000 law firms across the country to obtain their rankings.

According to US News, “Achieving a high ranking is a special distinction that signals a unique combination of excellence and breadth of expertise.”

Click here to view BLG’s award information on the US News & World Report webpage.