WHO WE ARE
At Copeland, Stair, Valz & Lovell, LLP, we are civil litigation lawyers who thrive on fighting for our clients. We work with individuals and institutions large and small and are respected in courthouses throughout the Southeast as well-prepared, forceful, creative and cost-effective attorneys. Our experience, drive and dedication will help you achieve the best possible result with a defense tailored to your case.
We have a proven formula for success:
- Hire quality people.
- Listen to the client.
- Develop the best defense strategy.
- Think and act aggressively.
- Communicate well and often.
- Provide the defense cost-effectively.
In 1970 we had five attorneys. Now, we have approximately 70 attorneys. Our steady growth is a result of referrals from happy, satisfied clients who have experienced the benefit of our efforts. If you have civil dispute concerns, contact any of our Partners or one of our Practice Group Leaders listed below. They will be glad to help.
- Architects & Engineers – Kent Stair, Chair, Paul Sperry, Co-Chair
- Commercial Litigation – Douglas W. MacKelcan, Chair, and Brian Spitler, Co-Chair
- Construction Litigation – Corey Mendel, Co-Chair
- General Liability – Ryan Dixon, Chair, and Melissa Greene, Co-Chair
- Health Care Litigation – Lee Weatherly, Chair, and Kristen Thompson, Co-Chair
- Insurance Coverage and Bad Faith Litigation – Melissa L. Bailey, Chair, and Kathy Carlsten, Co-Chair
- Product Liability – Mark Lefkow, Chair
- Transportation and Transportation Litigation – Stephen Cohen, Chair, and Ryan Conner, Co-Chair
We are proud of our achievements, mostly because of the benefit they provide to our clients. Our attorneys are known for taking cases to trial and some of our attorneys have taken hundreds of cases to trial verdict. Our legal teams are committed to providing clients with representation based on our experience and hard work. We craft strategy best suited for client-specific business goals; whether that is settlement, mediation, trial or other alternative methods of resolution. Our peers and clients acknowledge our skill and affirm that we work to obtain the right result. Our skills have been acknowledged by the industry organizations and groups noted below.
- CSVL, 2023 Best Law Firms®; National and Metropolitan recognition in Construction Law and Litigation, Legal Malpractice Defense, Medical Malpractice Defense, Personal Injury Defense, Insurance Law and Litigation, and Healthcare Litigation.
- Melissa C. Greene, 2024 Best Lawyers® Ones to Watch recognition for Medical Malpractice Law in Atlanta, GA
- Ryan W. Conner, 2024 Best Lawyers® Ones to Watch recognition for Product Liability Litigation in Charleston, SC
- Eric J. Frisch, 2024 Best Lawyers® Lawyer of the Year recognition for Health Care Litigation in Atlanta, GA; 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Health Care Litigation and Medical Malpractice Defense in Atlanta, GA; Selected to Georgia Super Lawyers® 2023
- Kent T. Stair, 2024 Best Lawyers® Lawyer of the Year recognition for Construction Law; 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Construction Law and Litigation, and Legal Malpractice Law in Atlanta, GA and Charleston, SC; Georgia Super Lawyers® 2023
- Douglas W. MacKelcan, 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Commercial Litigation in Charleston, SC
- Paul E. Sperry, 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Construction Law and Litigation in Charleston, SC
- Sarah W. Butler, 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Construction Litigation and Insurance Litigation in Charleston, SC
- Gary Lovell, Jr., 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Medical Malpractice Defense and Person Injury Litigation in Charleston, SC and Atlanta, GA; Selected to Georgia Super Lawyers® 2023
- Lee C. Weatherly, 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Personal Injury Litigation in Charleston, SC; Fellow in American College of Trial Lawyers
- Fred M. Valz, III., 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Insurance Law in Atlanta, GA; Georgia Super Lawyers® 2023
- Rolfe M. Martin, 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Medical Malpractice Defense in Atlanta, GA; Georgia Super Lawyers® 2023
- Stephen J. Cohen, 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Personal Injury Litigation in Atlanta, GA
- Broderick W. Harrell, 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Personal Injury Litigation in Atlanta, GA
- Angela C. Kopet, 2024 Best Lawyers® recognition for Insurance Law and Litigation in Chattanooga, TN; Selected to Mid-South Super Lawyers® 2023; Member of The Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel
- Charles M. McDaniel, Jr., Selected to Georgia Super Lawyers® 2023
- Melissa L. Bailey, Selected to Georgia Super Lawyers® Rising Stars 2023
- Wade K. Copeland (retired), Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers
- David F. Root (retired), Fellow in American College of Trial Lawyers, Member of The Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel
In addition to serving our clients’ needs, CSVL is committed to serving the community in which we work and live. We support our team’s involvement in individual volunteer and philanthropic efforts through various community organizations. The CSVL Community Engagement Committee further encourages our team’s commitment to the community by organizing and participating in quarterly projects aimed at meeting the area’s needs.
Diversity is more than a statistic; it is a core value that is vital to the success of our firm. CSVL embraces all aspects of diversity including race, ethnicity, culture, religious beliefs, marital status, sexual orientation, and gender identity. We believe the varied experiences of our team strengthen our client service. In addition, CSVL promotes diversity and inclusion by:
- Sponsoring diversity and inclusion internal training
- Sponsoring external legal seminars for the legal community
- Oral and written publications on diversity and inclusion
- Supporting membership in diversity and inclusion organizations
- Offering flexible and reduced hour work requirements to accommodate various phases of life
Our firm has females in executive leadership roles, office management positions, and on key firm committees. Our Diversity and Inclusion Committee meets regularly to create and pursue initiatives with the Executive Committee’s approval.
Attracting and retaining professionals from a variety of backgrounds is important for our continued progress. To that end, we actively recruit diverse candidates and have an established associate mentoring program matching associates with more senior attorneys to facilitate an open dialogue about our similarities and differences. But, our work is not done, and we continue to strive for an increasingly diverse, inclusive CSVL.
CSVL Diversity Committee