Burr & Forman

Forrest S. Latta

Forrest S. Latta
  • J.D., magna cum laude, Cumberland School of Law at Samford University (1980)
  • B.S., summa cum laude, Troy University (1976)
  • Alabama State Bar
  • American Bar Association
  • Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel
  • Association of Life Insurance Counsel
  • Product Liability Advisory Council
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Alabama Defense Lawyers Association
  • Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM), Member
  • The Best Lawyers in America, Appellate Practice, Insurance Law (2008-2018)
  • Best Lawyers, "Lawyer of the Year," Appellate Practice, Mobile, AL (2014)
  • DRI Award Duffield Smith Award for Best Defense Publication 2001
  • Alabama Super Lawyers, Business Litigation (2008-2015)
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers, Insurance Coverage (2016-2017)
  • Board of Trustees, Troy University
  • Board of Advisors, Samford University Cumberland School of Law
  • Board of Trustees, Baptist Foundation of Alabama
  • Vice-President, American Camellia Society
  • Board of Directors, The Nature Conservancy
  • Insurance-Coverage/Bad Faith

  • Lead counsel for inventor of cellulosic fuel process in defense of business suit by a former investor who sued to enforce certain rights under an option agreement. Injunction claim by investor was denied; Order was issued declaring option void.

  • Class Actions

  • Defense of pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) in putative class action arising from business agreements with participating drugstores and providers.

  • Media

  • Successful defense (winning dismissal) on behalf of syndicated radio talk show host in defamation claim by public figure for alleged injurious comments about him and his wife.

  • Product Liability

  • Lead counsel in defense of death claim arising from a hunting accident involving alleged defective tree-stand. Favorable settlement.

  • Lead counsel in defense of tire manufacturer in multiple death case arising from auto accident allegedly resulting from tread separation. Favorable settlement.

  • Appellate

  • Appellant’s counsel on appeal of $1 million jury verdict arising from injury causing paraplegia. Reversed and rendered.

  • Defense of excess D&O insurer in coverage litigation with Directors and Officers of a major national health rehabilitation provider arising from underlying claims by individual and institutional investors alleging corporate and criminal fraud.

  • Appellant’s counsel on appeal of $50 million wrongful death verdict arising from fiery truck accident allegedly caused by manufacturing defect. Remitted to $4 million.

  • Appellant’s counsel on reversal of $7.5 million "wrongful death" jury verdict against a road contractor. Auto accident occurred 6 years after the contractor's work was completed and accepted by the state transportation department.

  • Jury defense verdict in Florida bad faith lawsuit against insurer who delayed making a $5 million umbrella payment to 17-year old brain injury victim (with $30 million in damages) where the amount of underlying coverage was still in question.

  • Lead counsel in successful defense of pollution claim over costs incurred by insured for its EPA-mandated remediation of ground pollution at a paper manufacturing facility that had been in continuous operation for over 50 years, triggering multiple policies.

  • Life, Health & Disability

  • Defense of national health insurer in series of Georgia bad faith claims over alleged pattern of rescissions, post-claim underwriting, and fraudulent actuarial/rating practices. Resolved through favorable settlements and summary judgment.

  • Defense judgment for individual disability insurer on bad faith claim by a lawyer who alleged her benefits were terminated unlawfully while she suffered from chronic fatigue syndrome and/or fibromyalgia preventing her from practicing law.

  • Commercial

  • Defense judgment for international product manufacturer in suit alleging that it unlawfully canceled a manufacturing agreement with an international company to build products overseas.

Partner | Mobile, AL

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Appellate Insurance Litigation & Coverage Commercial / Corporate Litigation Broker-Dealer Disputes Life, Health & Disability / ERISA Insurance Product Liability Director & Officer Liability Trusts, Estates & Fiduciary Litigation

Mr. Latta is a corporate defense lawyer with 30 years' experience helping clients defend their products, their services, and their brand in our courts.

His peer ratings include: Martindale Hubbell (A-V), Super Lawyers (Business Litigation), and Best Lawyers in America (Insurance Law & Appellate Practice).  He also is a peer-selected member of the Product Liability Advisory Council (PLAC).

Besides his trial court practice, Mr. Latta has been named Appellate “Lawyer of the Year” by Best Lawyers and he chairs the firm’s Appellate Practice Section. He served by appointment on the Alabama Supreme Court’s Standing Committee for Appellate Rules for over 20 years.  His appellate experience includes over 100 appeals, including some of the landmark Supreme Court cases that first set standards for punitive damages.

Mr. Latta is active in the professional programs of various bar associations, including the American Bar Association (ABA), Defense Research Institute (DRI), Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel (FDCC), and Mobile Bar Association

Mr. Latta serves on the Board of Trustees of Troy University, Board of Directors of the Nature Conservancy, Board of Advisors of Cumberland School of Law (Samford University), Board of Trustees of the Baptist Foundation of Alabama, and Board of Directors of the American Camellia Society.  He also is a volunteer lawyer in the Mobile Bar Association’s pro bono program and the ABA’s Death Penalty Representation Project.

Mr. Latta received his undergraduate degree from Troy University, summa cum laude, in 1980 and his law degree from Samford University, Cumberland School of Law, cum laude, in 1983.  During law school he was an Associate Editor of the Cumberland Law Review and a member of the school’s award-winning National Trial Team.

Case experiences:  Business litigation; product liability; Life, Health & Disability; insurance bad faith; insurance coverage disputes; excess & reinsurance; unfair claim practices; punitive damages defense; ERISA preemption; media liability; dealer/franchise termination; false advertising; unfair competition; shareholder oppression; class actions; defamation; Robinson-Patman Act; price fixing; Sherman Act; securities fraud and broker-dealer claims; Directors & Officers Liability; Errors & Omissions; Agribusiness; appeals in state and federal courts.