Lawyers

Michael B. Terry, Partner

Mike Terry handles complex commercial and appellate matters, as well as class actions. Over the past 20 years, his practice has focused heavily on appellate litigation, particularly in the areas of class actions and punitive damages. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, an organization founded to advance the highest standards and practices of appellate advocacy and to recognize outstanding appellate lawyers.  Mike has published three books and numerous articles on appellate practice.   

Mike has been recognized as a Georgia “Lawyer of the Year” four times by Best Lawyers, most recently in 2020.   He has been a Top 100 Georgia “Super Lawyer” for the last 14 years.   

Mike argued and achieved a 7-0 victory before the Georgia Supreme Court in a landmark challenge to the constitutionality of the state’s caps on pain and suffering damages in medical malpractice cases. In 2020, Mike argued and achieved a victory before the Georgia Supreme Court in a $46 million dollar medical malpractice case.  In 2018, Mike argued and obtained a unanimous victory before the Georgia Supreme Court for a class of 12,000 teachers alleging improper elimination of retirement plan contributions from the school district.  In 2016, Mike argued and achieved a 7-0 reversal of the denial of class certification for a class of 800,000 consumers alleging they had been charged usurious fees by their Bank.  In 2015, Mike was selected by the Council of State Court Judges of Georgia to represent that body in a successful Georgia Supreme Court challenge to actions taken by Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission. Mike received the inaugural “Guardian of Justice” Award from the Council of State Court Judges in 2017. 

Mike served as President of the Atlanta Bar Association in 2010-2011, where he set a focus on judicial funding and services for lawyers in transition. In 2019, Mike received the Charles Watkins Award for lifetime service to the Bar, the highest award given by the Atlanta Bar Association.  Mike also served as President of the charitable Atlanta Bar Foundation in 2018-2019.  Mike is currently on the Board of Directors of the Atlanta Bar Association, the Board of Governors of the State Bar of Georgia, and the House of Delegates of the American Bar Association.    

Mike is a frequent lecturer and author on business litigation topics including class actions, punitive damages and appellate issues. He is also often asked to moderate debates and panel discussions involving judges.

Representative Work

Co-counsel for successful plaintiffs in a breach of fiduciary duty case which resulted in a $454 million jury verdict that was affirmed on appeal.

Appellate counsel for defense that successfully reversed a $457 million judgment against one of the world’s largest forest product companies, Weyerhaeuser Co.

Appellate counsel for plaintiffs in Bogle v. McClure, which affirmed an award of $16.6 million to seven employment discrimination plaintiffs.

Appellate counsel for defense in obtaining reversal of an intermediate appellate decision certifying a class action to pursue a $110 million claim under the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act.

Obtained dismissal of four putative class actions against not-for-profit hospitals challenging the hospitals’ pricing policies, and appeared as lead appellate counsel for the hospitals in having those cases affirmed on appeal.

Appellate counsel on behalf of a major peanut processor in obtaining a new trial following a $20 million jury verdict.

Appellate counsel for a class of policyholders in upholding class certification of a case involving credit life insurance.

Retained to submit amicus curiae briefs (and at times to present oral argument on behalf of amicus) on behalf of the Democratic Party of Georgia, the ACLU of Georgia, the Medical Association of Georgia, the Hospital Authority of Clarke County, and the Georgia Canoe Association.

Professional Activities

Immediate Past President and Executive Committee Member, Atlanta Bar Association; Past Chair, Litigation Section; Past Chair, Continuing Legal Education Board of Directors; Past Chair, Judicial Campaign Conduct Committee

Member, Board of Governors, State Bar of Georgia

Sustaining Member, Lawyers Foundation of Georgia

Member, Georgia Trial Lawyers Association

Member, American Association for Justice

Member, Lawyers Club of Atlanta

Member, American Constitution Society

Member, Executive Committee and Chair, Program Committee, Lumpkin Inn, American Inns of Court

Chair, Standing Committee on the Unauthorized Practice of Law, Supreme Court of Georgia, also Member, Emergency Management Committee

Former president, Druid Hills Civic Association

Board of Directors, Atlanta Youth Soccer Association

Publications/Speaking Engagements

Honors and Awards

Fellow, American Academy of Appellate Lawyers

Best Lawyers’ 2016 Atlanta Appellate "Lawyer of the Year"

Leading Business Lawyer, Chambers USA

Best Lawyers in America

Top 100 Georgia Super Lawyer, Atlanta Magazine

Georgia Local Litigation Star, Benchmark Plaintiff

Case of the Year award, Georgia Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers Newsletter

News

Photo of Michael B. Terry
Atlanta
1201 West Peachtree Street NW
Suite 3900
Atlanta, GA 30309

Education

University of Georgia School of Law, J.D., 1987, magna cum laude

University of Georgia, A.B., 1982, magna cum laude

Admissions