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Balch & Bingham Appellate Victory Featured by the Daily Report

Balch & Bingham successfully represented Walton EMC, Jackson EMC and Sawnee EMC before the Georgia Court of Appeals in the dismissal of two class action patronage capital lawsuits filed against distribution electric membership corporations (EMCs). On June 9, 2017, the Georgia Court of Appeals affirmed a trial court’s dismissal of Walker v. Oglethorpe Power Corp., et al., Civ. Action No. 14CV2932-8 and Shapiro v. Oglethorpe Power Corp., et al., Civ. Action No. 14CV8323-8. The lawsuits were cases of first impression for Georgia courts, however, EMCs across the country are facing similar litigation.
 
The ruling was covered by the Daily Report on June 30, 2017, in an article entitled, “Lawyers Turn Out the Lights on Power Co-op Suits After Appellate Ruling.” Josh Archer, managing partner of the firm’s Atlanta office and member of the Litigation Practice, was quoted in the article. Josh discussed the significance of the case, which had the potential to change electric utility policy across the state of Georgia. In addition, Josh shared the economic importance of the decision to allow the EMCs’ governing boards to determine if and when to return profits to customers without the court-mandated introduction of a distribution schedule.
 
Balch’s Atlanta Litigation Practice members Josh Archer, Jim Hollis, Anne Kaufold-Wiggins, and Hugh McNatt served as counsel to Walton EMC, Jackson EMC and Sawnee EMC. Josh Archer argued the cases before the Georgia Court of Appeals