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Since our founding, we have adhered to a set of guiding principles we refer to as “The Lightfoot Way.” Chief among these principles is the value and emphasis we place on service — to our clients, our communities and each other. That core tenet defines Lightfoot as a firm and shapes our unique approach to what we do: litigation, compliance and investigations.

In addition to service, there are other elements of The Lightfoot Way that set us apart:

Our History

We were founded in 1990 by a group of lawyers in Birmingham, Alabama, who left a full-service firm to establish a litigation boutique. Our founding name partners — Warren Lightfoot, Sam Franklin and the late Jere White  — wanted to break out of the traditional mold for managing a law firm. From the very beginning, Lightfoot, Franklin & White was a place where diversity and inclusion were encouraged, work-life balance was emphasized and quality legal work mattered most.

The firm also became the training ground for some of the brightest, most experienced defense lawyers in our state and beyond. We were founded during a time when Alabama was home to jurisdictions that were openly hostile to corporations, and plaintiffs’ lawyers were pursuing new avenues of attack not attempted anywhere else, particularly in the realm of toxic torts and class actions. Lightfoot’s lawyers were at the forefront of defending clients against these emerging lawsuits, and our lawyers developed novel approaches and tactics of their own. We honed our legal skills in this fire, sharpening them as we became dedicated advocates for our clients.

Today, Lightfoot continues to advance its reputation as a formidable defense litigation firm. In fact, for the 2021 ranking, we were recognized by Benchmark Litigation as a “Top 20 Trial Law Firm” in the nation for the third year in a row, placing us in good company among some of the most admired litigators from practices with long legacies of excellence. 

We are sought out by leading companies from around the country to handle litigation, internal investigations and compliance matters. We expanded to Texas, where we serve clients in the state and surrounding region from our Houston office.

We continue our tradition of promoting diversity and inclusion within our firm. In 2018, Melody Eagan was named managing partner. The first woman to hold that position at Lightfoot, Eagan has spent her entire career with the firm, joining soon after it was founded.

Melody Eagan, Managing Partner
Serving our clients is a privilege on which we thrive. Lightfoot has the tools, the talent and the culture to meet our clients’ needs and to surpass their expectations.— Melody Eagan, Managing Partner

Though much has changed in the world since 1990, our founding values remain the same. We are a firm that puts service first, pursues excellence, attracts talented attorneys from all backgrounds and gives nothing but our best to every client and matter. It is who we are. It is The Lightfoot Way.

They have a very deep bench. They also have a good pipeline of up-and-coming and younger partners and senior associates to fill the ranks...I do think they’re good value for money.— Lightfoot Client via Chambers Insight Report 2022
There are a number of consistent leaders, supplemented by a rotation of young, engaging and professional associates. It is a very strong team that is willing to tackle immediate problems and advise on root-cause issues.— Lightfoot Client via Chambers Insight Report 2022
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