Nick is a native Atlantan and has lived in Atlanta all his life. He attended public schools in DeKalb County and then worked his way through Emory College and Emory Law School. He is the first in his extended family to have graduated college.
Nick was fortunate enough during college and law school to earn internships allowing him to work in the Department of Natural Resources during Jimmy Carter’s governorship and then in the United States Congress in 1975. His exposure to the operations of government and politics led him to law school and the practice of law.
After graduating from Emory Law School in 1977, Nick immediately began practicing law with a defense litigation firm in downtown Atlanta. The first fourteen years of Nick’s practice were spent with this firm and its successor firm, representing insurance companies and self-insured corporations in the defense of tort actions in courts throughout the State of Georgia. As a defense lawyer, Nick tried dozens of cases to verdict involving automobile and truck accidents, product liability, negligent security claims, slip and fall accidents, and insurance contracts.
While with his defense litigation firm, Nick also began developing a plaintiff’s practice. He successfully litigated product liability cases against automobile manufacturers involving issues concerning heating and cooling systems, and fuel-fed fires.
Nick was also lead counsel in a highly publicized case against Atlanta Hospital involving a doctor allegedly responsible for 3 deaths within a very short period of time. The end result was a very successful resolution prior to trial based on negligent credentialing claims against Atlanta Hospital which thereafter was investigated by the State Medical Review Board and eventually forced to close its doors.
In 1993, Nick and his partner Glenn Kushel began a plaintiff’s practice dedicated exclusively to the representation of individuals injured or killed as a result of medical malpractice, nursing home abuse, trucking accidents, automobile accidents, product liability, premises liability and other negligent and intentional acts. Along with his partner, Nick successfully argued the case of Keenan v. Plouffe to the Georgia Supreme Court, which resulted in a landmark decision holding that a defendant physician, a faculty member of the Medical College of Georgia, was not immune from suit under the Georgia Tort Claims Act. The case eventually settled for an amount exceeding seven and one half million dollars.
The firm also was lead counsel in a very significant case against the City of Atlanta, Marriott Hotels, engineers, and product liability manufacturers stemming from a sewer collapse under the parking lot of the Midtown Courtyard Hotel by Marriott in Atlanta. The case presented a complicated array of issues ranging from architectural and professional engineering responsibilities, professional standards to be exercised in the field of geotechnical engineering, and municipal responsibility for negligent acts. After years of litigation, the case was resolved for a significant amount one month before trial.
Nick was lead counsel along with his partner Glenn Kushel in a negligent security case against the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority. The firm’s client was stabbed at the Peachtree Center MARTA Station. Having been offered nothing prior to trial, the case was tried successfully to a verdict of one million dollars, where the plaintiff had less than $20,000.00 in medical bills.
Nick served as co-lead counsel in a highly publicized case involving the shooting of a 93-year-old woman by several Atlanta Police Department Narcotics Investigators. Acting upon a warrant obtained with false information, a team of Atlanta Police Officers and Investigators burst into the home of this law-abiding citizen, fatally shooting her and eventually planting drugs in her home to cover up their error. A number of Officers within the department continued the cover-up until a confidential informant came forth with the truth. A suit was filed against the City of Atlanta, the Atlanta Police Chief, and others seeking damages for violation of the deceased’s constitutional rights, resulting in her death. After three years of litigation in Federal Court, the case was settled favorably for $4,900,000.00. The Narcotics Division of the Atlanta Police Department was disbanded, several Officers and Investigators were dismissed, and four Investigators were sentenced to significant time in Federal Prison.
Nick has also been lead counsel for the presentation of oral arguments in many cases before the Georgia Court of Appeals and Georgia Supreme Court.
- $1.1 million verdict, automobile wrongful death (1988)
- $1.3 million verdict, direct action against homeowner’s insurer for fire loss (1989)
- $4.4 million, auto product liability (1990)
- $5 million, construction liability death case (1996)
- $7.8 million medical malpractice brain injury (1997)
- Confidential, wrongful death at railroad crossing (1999)
- Confidential, electrocution wrongful death (2000)
- Confidential, private plane crash death (2005)
- $4.9 million, civil rights violation wrongful death (2010)
- Confidential, passenger van rollover, brain damage (2013)
- Confidential, DUI, server, liquor liability, orthopedic injury (2014)
- Confidential, DUI, server, liquor liability, brain damage injury (2015)
- Confidential, multiple party wrongful death private airplane crash (2016)
- Confidential, pedestrian wrongful death (2017)
- Confidential, automobile collision, permanent orthopedic damages, hip, leg and foot (2018)
- Confidential, automobile accident, partial leg amputation (2020)
- Confidential, motorcycle/vehicle accident wrongful death (2023)
Recognition and Awards
- American College of Trial Lawyers, Fellow
- American Board of Trial Advocates, Advocate
- Tradition of Excellence Award, General Practice and Trial Section, State Bar of Georgia