Michael B. Wallace
Michael B. Wallace
Shareholder
Jackson Office
Phone: 601.968.5500
Fax: 601.944.7738
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Free background information available upon request
Practice Areas
Education
Harvard University, 1973, B.A.
University of Virginia, 1976, J.D.
Work History
Appointed by President Reagan as Director of the Legal Services Corporation, 1984-90
Clerk for Hon. William Rehnquist, Supreme Court of the United States, 1977-78
Clerk for Hon. Harry Walker, Supreme Court of Mississippi, 1976-77
Admissions
United States Supreme Court
Mississippi State and Federal Courts
United States Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit
United States Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
Professional Organizations and Special Designations
Benchmark Litigation 2017 - "Local Litigation Star" in Mississippi for Appellate and General Commercial
Listed in The Best Lawyers in America 2017 – Appellate Practice; Bet-the-Company Litigation; Commercial Litigation; Government Relations Practice
Named The Best Lawyers in America 2017 Jackson, MS Government Relations Practice "Lawyer of the Year"
Ranked in Chambers USA 2016 - Litigation
2013 Corporate INTL Legal Award - Appellate Lawyer of the Year in Mississippi
American Academy of Appellate Lawyers
Mississippi Bar Association
Charles L. Clark Chapter of the American Inns of Court
DRI Appellate Advocacy Committee, Former Chair
Ranked in Chambers USA 2018
Notable Cases and Professional Accomplishments
Swindol v. Aurora Flight Services Corp., No. 2015-FC-01317-SCT (Miss. Mar. 24, 2016) – Filed amicus brief for National Rifle Association in successful effort to uphold statutory protections for owners of firearms.
Legislature v. Shipman, 177 So. 3d 1211 (Miss. 2015). Represented Mississippi Legislature to secure a reversal for lack of jurisdiction of a Circuit Court order interfering with a referendum to a proposed constitutional amendment.
Estate of Cole v. Ferrell, 163 So. 3d 921 (Miss. 2012). Secured reversal of trial court decision refusing to preserve confidentiality of settlement agreement.
Tellus Operating Group, LLC v. Texas Petroleum Inv. Co., 105 So. 3d 274 (Miss. 2012). Assisted at trial and had primary responsibility on appeal for successful defense against claims of conversion from natural gas well.
National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, 567 U.S. _, 132 S. Ct 2566 (2012). Represented Mississippi in successful constitutional challenge to mandatory expansion of Medicaid.
In re McDonald, 98 So. 3d 1040 (Miss. 2012). Secured stay and ultimate reversal of contempt judgment for absence of due process.
Grant v. Ford Motor Co., 89 So. 3d 655 (Miss. App. 2012). Secured affirmance of summary judgment for defendant manufacturer in product liability suit.
Mississippi Windstorm Underwriting Ass'n v. Union Nat'l Fire Ins. Co., 86 So. 3d 216 (Miss. 2012). Represented Allstate in securing affirmance of administrative decision permitting related insurers to file together in determining share of responsibility for damages suffered by public hurricane damage pool.
Coleman v. Ford Motor Co., 70 So. 3d 223 (Miss. App. 2011). Secured affirmance of jury verdict for defendant manufacturer in product liability suit.
Boston Edison Co. v. U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commision, 658 F.3d 1361 (Fed. Cir. 2011). On behalf of purchaser of nuclear power plant, secured reversal of judgment in favor of seller related to storage of spent nuclear fuel.
Brodsky v. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 578 F.3d 175 (2d Cir. 2009). On behalf of nuclear power generator, secured dismissal for lack of jurisdiction of an appeal from the granting of a regulatory exemption.
Mississippi State Democratic Party v. Barbour, 529 F.3d 538 (5th Cir. 2008). In voting rights case, secured reversal of judgment and dismissal of complaint for lack of standing.
Barbour v. Hood, 974 So. 2d 232 (Miss. 2008). Successfully defended Governor against suit by Attorney General to change date of special election for United States Senate.
Ford Motor Co. v. Tennin, 960 So. 2d 379 (Miss. 2007). Secured reversal on appeal of order granting new trial to plaintiff after defense verdict.
Buente v. Allstate Ins. Co., 422 F.Supp.2d 690 (S.D. Miss. 2006). Represented major insurer in securing enforcement of water exclusion clause in homeowners' policy after Hurricane Katrina. Subsequently established same principle on appeal. Smith v. Allstate Indem. Co., 256 Fed. Appx. 694 (5th Cir. 2007).
Wilson v. Airtherm Products, Inc., 436 F.3d 906 (8th Cir. 2006). Obtained a reversal of a judgment of more than half a million dollars for alleged violations of the WARN Act in connection with the sale of manufacturing plant, resulting in judgment in favor of the selling company.
Owen & Galloway, L.L.C. v. Smart Corp., 913 So. 2d 174 (Miss. 2005). Secured dismissal of state antitrust action for lack of standing.
Town of Bolton v. Chevron Oil Co., 919 So. 2d 1101 (Miss. Ct. App. 2005). Persuaded the Mississippi Court of Appeals to dismiss an oil field pollution action pending submission to the Oil and Gas Board, notwithstanding plaintiffs' assertion that they sought only common law damages, not remediation of their property.
Branch v. Smith, 538 U.S. 254 (2003); Mauldin v. Branch, 866 So. 2d 429 (Miss. 2003). Represented the Mississippi Republican Party in congressional redistricting trials in both state and federal courts after the 2000 census. Argued and won appeals in the Supreme Courts of the United States and of Mississippi.
Lane v. R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., 853 So. 2d 1144 (Miss. 2003). Represented tobacco company in successful brief establishing that product liability actions cannot be brought against cigarette manufacturers in Mississippi in light of Miss.Code Ann. 11-1-63.
Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. Smith, 844 So. 2d 1145 (Miss. 2002). Represented oil company in successfully arguing on appeal that property owners in oil fields must exhaust their remedies before the Oil and Gas Board before filing suit for environmental damage.
ABOUT Michael B. Wallace

Mike Wallace was admitted to the Mississippi Bar in 1976 and is a partner in the Jackson office. His practice is concentrated in commercial litigation at the trial and appellate levels. He also has wide experience in litigating constitutional claims and election disputes. Mike served as a law clerk for Justice Harry G. Walker, Supreme Court of Mississippi, from 1976-1977, and to Associate Justice William H. Rehnquist, Supreme Court of the United States, from 1977-1978. From 1980-1983 he served as counsel to Trent Lott, who was then the Republican Whip of the United States House of Representatives. In 1999, he served as Special Impeachment Counsel to Senate Majority Leader Lott for the impeachment trial of President Clinton. He is general counsel of the Mississippi Republican Party.

 

Additional Notable Cases & Professional Accomplishments

EEOC v. Southern Farm Bureau Cas. Ins. Co., 271 F.3d 209 (5th Cir. 2001). Represented employer in successfully arguing for affirmance of order quashing federal subpoena in administrative discrimination investigation.

 

Horne v. Time Warner Operations, Inc., 119 F.Supp. 2d 624 (S.D. Miss. 1999). Secured dismissal, affirmed on appeal by Fifth Circuit, of class action to recover late fees charged by cable television operators.

 

Bank of Mississippi Life & Health Ins. Guar. Ass’n., 730 So. 2d 49 (Miss. 1998). Represented the trustee of a retirement fund which owned an insurance policy issued by an insolvent company. Reversal of a judgment approving the state guaranty association's denial of coverage was secured, and seven figures were recovered on remand.

 

Obtained seven-figure settlement from government on hospital administrative appeal of
Medicare reimbursement.

 

Pro-Choice Mississippi v. Fordice, 716 So. 2d 645 (Miss. 1998). Represented the Governor, the Attorney General, and the Department of Health in successfully defending against a constitutional challenge to Mississippi's statutes
regulating abortion.

 

Burrell v. Mississippi State Tax Comm., 536 So. 2d 848 (Miss 1988). Represented a county board of supervisors which had been deprived by statute of the power to tax a nuclear power plant in the county. Persuaded the Supreme Court to remand the case for a new trial on federal constitutional grounds. After retrial, the case was settled, with the legislature granting the county the authority to collect millions of dollars annually in tax revenues from the plant.

 

Secured a defense judgment for insurance company at trial against a claim to recover attorneys' fees and expenses under a directors and officers policy. The district court concluded that the insured had failed to prove that the claimed expenses were reasonable and necessary.

 

In re Corr-Williams Tobacco Co., 691 So. 2d 424 (Miss. 1997). Represented tobacco company and presented oral argument on behalf of all defendants seeking a writ of prohibition to block the Attorney General from pursuing his claim to recover Medicaid funds. By a 6-1 vote, the Supreme Court refused to determine the Attorney General's legal authority to proceed until after the rendition of the final judgment.

 

Allen v. R&H Oil & Gas Co., 63 F.3d 1326 (5th Cir. 1995). Persuaded the Fifth Circuit that the total amount of punitive damages sought by multiple plaintiffs under Mississippi law should be attributable to each individual plaintiff for purposes of computing the amount in controversy, thereby establishing federal removal jurisdiction over claims resulting from a gas well blow-out.

 

Fordice v. Thomas, 649 So. 2d 835 (Miss. 1995). Represented Governor in one of the first reported decisions under the Mississippi Administrative Procedures Law. The Supreme Court agreed that the Governor is not properly subject to a writ of mandamus, and it removed certain restrictions imposed by injunction against the Department of Environmental Quality.

 

In re McMillin, 642 So. 2d 1136 (Miss. 1994). Represented political party and persuaded the Supreme Court to issue a writ of prohibition precluding a trial court from enjoining the conduct of elections for the Mississippi Court of Appeals.

 

Morley v. Jackson Redevelopment Authority, 632 So. 2d 1284 (Miss. 1994). Secured reversal of an eminent domain judgment which had temporarily seized possession of a historic hotel in downtown Jackson.

 

Alexandria Associates, Ltd. v. Mitchell Co., 2 F.3d 598 (5th Cir. 1993). Secured reversal of summary judgment in a securities action. The case was settled favorably for client during trial on remand.

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