Tom Easterly, who joined Taylor Porter in 2006 and was named a Partner in 2011, regularly advises local and national clients involved in simple and complex business litigation matters, as well as various commercial transactions.
Tom concentrates a substantial portion of his practice on the preparation and trial of complex commercial disputes. His work involves construction, real estate, redhibition, insurance, arbitration, toxic tort, workers’ compensation, breach of contract, bankruptcy and regulatory issues, and the matters in which he is engaged frequently have overlapping subject matter concerns. He also has significant experience handling complex personal injury matters as both defense and plaintiff counsel.
Tom is also experienced in various business transactions, including limited liability company transactions, master service agreements, non-competition agreements, secrecy and confidentiality agreements, donations, sales/assignments, forbearance agreements, participant agreements, shareholder agreements, exchanges and operating agreements.
In the insurance world, Tom has represented numerous insurance companies and provided counsel concerning a broad array of coverage and defense issues. Tom is a frequent lecturer on insurance and other contract matters. His seminars have included topics such as insurance coverage litigation, effective collection strategies, business contract principles, and bad faith insurance and extra-contractual liability claims.
Tom is admitted to practice before every Louisiana court, state and federal, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Tom was also previously admitted pro hac vice in Texas. Most recently, after arguing two consolidated cases to the Louisiana Supreme Court, Tom was admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court in connection with a petition seeking United States Supreme Court review of the Louisiana Supreme Court’s decisions in Duhon v. ActiveLAF, LLC, __ So.3d __, 2016 WL 6123820 (La. Oct. 19, 2016) and Alicea v. ActiveLAF, LLC, __ So.3d __, 2016 WL 6123859 (La. Oct. 19, 2016) (petition for certiorari filed March 22, 2017).
Tom has been recognized by Louisiana Super Lawyers as a "Rising Star" in Business Litigation for four consecutive years (2014-2017).
Tom is active within the Baton Rouge community and is either a present or past member of the Baton Rouge Bar Association, the Louisiana State Bar Association, the Federal Bar Association, the Defense Research Institute (DRI), Ducks Unlimited (DU), Coastal Conservation Association (CCA), Delta Waterfowl, Land Trust Alliance, and the Mississippi Forestry Association. Tom is also a founding member of the Muscular Dystrophy Association Legal Leaders program and a former Ball Chairman of Le Cercle De Bacchus.
Tom currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Boy Scouts of America, Istrouma Area Council, and he formerly served on the Board of Directors of the Baton Rouge City Club and the University Acres Civic Association.
Tom and his wife Lindsey live in Baton Rouge with their three children.
Tom graduated cum laude from the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business. Tom earned his Juris Doctorate from the LSU Law Center in 2006, and he also holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration, which he obtained from Louisiana State University in 2005.
Mr. Easterly has significant lead counsel and first-chair trial experience:
- Lead counsel for a specialty and intermediate chemical manufacturer specializing in ethylene and propylene oxide based chemicals, in connection with developing and revising master service agreements, access agreements, purchase orders, secrecy and invention agreements, and other specialized contract work, in addition to providing support for all litigation matters arising underneath such agreements.
- Representation of private sellers in the successful negotiation and conveyance of a $2.6 million dollar quitclaim deed in connection with a 114-acre property in Iberville Parish, LA.
- Trial counsel for The Dow Chemical Company in a two-week toxic tort trial arising from underground salt cavern storage wells, and in particular, defense of personal injury and emotional distress claims associated with the aftermath of leaking salt cavern storage wells. The case concluded with The Dow Chemical Company paying $0 for the plaintiffs’ personal injury claims.
- Lead counsel for an Atlanta-based general contractor in connection with enforcing subcontract claims and defending liens arising out of a 330-unit, 20-building apartment complex located in Baton Rouge.
- Representation of general contractors and subcontractors before the Louisiana Contractors’ Licensing Board and the Contractors’ Licensing Law, La. R.S. 37:2150, et seq.
- Lead counsel for various insurance companies in connection with automobile-related personal injury claims.
- Lead trial counsel for a local car dealer in defense of a premises liability claim resulting in dismissal ($0).
- Lead trial counsel for several West Baton Rouge Parish residents in a real estate lawsuit adverse to Union Pacific Railroad.
- Trial counsel for Louisiana State University in defense of breach of contract claims.
- Lead counsel for contract revisions to membership agreements for a group self-insurance fund organized pursuant to La. R.S. 23:1195 et seq. to pool the liabilities of eligible members for workers' compensation benefits, and, in addition, lead trial counsel for litigation matters arising from the membership agreements.
- Local and National counsel for BOMAG Americas, Inc., a worldwide manufacturer and distributor of heavy compaction equipment, in connection with commercial and personal injury litigation matters arising in Louisiana, Rhode Island, and New York.
- Representation of AMIKIDS BATON ROUGE, INC., a local non-profit corporation, in connection with its successful acquisition of property through a federal grant under the HOME Investment Partnership Act.
- Lead trial counsel for BWI Companies, Inc., a lawn and garden wholesaler, in connection with commercial breach of contract claims.
- Trial counsel for Argosy Gaming Company, including a two-week jury trial in the Nineteenth Judicial District Court, involving complex commercial claims valuing more than $500 million. The claims were substantially limited before trial through successful motion practice, and the plaintiff was ultimately “zeroed” on appeal ($0).
- Defense counsel for Livingston Economic Development Council, Inc., in connection with wrongful death litigation arising out of a fatal railroad collision at an Industrial Park in Walker, LA. This litigation involved a railroad-highway grade crossing accident and defenses under 23 U.S.C. 409.
- Lead counsel for Helis Oil and Gas Company, L.LC., in connection with litigation arising out of property damage at an offshore platform in Eugene Island Block 300 involving a subsea “mudline tree” construction project.
- Bankruptcy counsel for Citizens Bank and Trust Company in connection with claims asserted against a large apartment complex in Baton Rouge and competing claims between construction-related creditors.