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David R. Kelly
David R. Kelly

David R. Kelly

Partner - Baton Rouge
David is an AV® rated litigation partner in the Baton Rouge office of Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, L.L.P. David's principal areas of practice include defense of class actions and multi-joinder claims and personal injury and product liability claims, business disputes, insurance regulatory matters and state, local and federal tax disputes. David has tried over 150 cases to verdict in state and federal courts and has handled appeals before all of the Louisiana courts of appeal, the Louisiana Supreme Court, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. He has also represented clients before the Board of Tax Appeals, the Departments of Revenue and Insurance and the Division of Administrative Law, and has been lead chair in a number of extended mediation and arbitration disputes. David has also served as the firm’s General Counsel since April of 2014. 
 
David is listed in the 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 Nationwide Tax Lawyer’s edition of "Superlawyers" for Tax Litigation. He was also selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2016 and 2017 editions. David was also listed in the 2016 edition of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business for Louisiana in the area of Corporate/M&A. 
 

Education

Paul M. Hebert Law School, Louisiana State University, J.D., 1982

Louisiana Tech University, Ruston, Louisiana, B.S. Accounting, 1979

Admissions

Admitted to practice: 1982, Louisiana State Courts, Eastern, Middle & Western Districts of Louisiana, Fifth and Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals

Professional Associations

American Board of Trial Advocates; Louisiana Chapter

Baton Rouge Bar Association

Louisiana State Bar Association

American Bar Association, Member: Committee on Torts, Committee on Insurance Practice, Committee on Intellectual Property Law; Litigation Section, State & Local Taxation Sub-Committee

Louisiana Association of Defense Counsel

Community Involvement

Cancer Services of Greater Baton Rouge, Past Board Member and Member of Executive Committee, 2003-2009

Member, Chairman's Council of the Greater Baton Rouge Chamber and Graduate of the Chamber’s Leadership Class of 2001

Baton Rouge Green, Past Board member and Past President

Baton Rouge Symphony Association, Past Board member and Past Executive Committee Member

Opera Louisiane, Board of Directors and Co-Chair of Governance Committee

Honors and Awards

AV® PreeminentTM Peer Review Rated.

Listed in Louisiana Super Lawyers in the area of Tax

Selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2016, 2017, 2018

Ranked in Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business for Louisiana in Corporate/M&A, 2016

Publications

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Representative Matters

  • David has argued a number of cases before the Louisiana Supreme Court on issues including:
    • Challenge to State and Local Tax codes requirement to maintain "suitable records" as being ambiguous. Yesterdays v. Calcasieu Parish Sales and Ues Tax Sept., 190 So.3d.710 (LA 5/13/16).
    • Constitutionality of Louisiana's asbestos abatement statute vis-a-vis revival of a prescribed cause of action. Cameron Parish School Board v. ACandS, Inc., 687 So.2d 84, 96-0895 (La. 1/14/97);
    • Taxation of two by-products of the crude oil refining industry, e.g., coke-on-catalyst and refinery gas. State v. BP Exploration & Oil, Inc., 686 So.2d 823 (La. 1997);
    • State Department of Highway's responsibility for auto accident on newly constructed section of highway. Shephard on Behalf of Shephard v. Scheeler, 701 So.2d 1308 (La. 1997); and Retroactive application of mandated benefits to existing group insurance policies under amendment to Insurance Code. In re: Louisiana Health Service & Indemnity Co. d/b/a Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana, 749 So.2d 610, 98-3034 (La. 1/17/99)
  • David led the litigation team in defense of Shell Oil Company and related companies, against an alleged multi-million dollar tax liability by the St. Charles Parish School Board. After a motion for summary judgment was granted dismissing a portion of the case, a verdict for the defense was rendered as to the disputed taxes after a two-day bench trial in federal court. St. Charles Parish School Board v. Shell Oil Company, et al, 435 F.Supp.2d 531 (E.D. La. 2006); St. Charles Parish School Board v. Shell Oil Company, et al, 2007 U.S. Dist. Lexis 41183.
  • David was lead counsel in 2002 federal court litigation involving a putative class action filed by first party contract holders seeking to establish class claims for diminution in value property claims; obtained early judgment granting motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim. Manguno v. Prudential Property & Cas. Ins. Co., 276 F.3d 720 (5th Cir. 2002).
  • David obtained a plaintiff-take-nothing jury verdict in 36 minutes after a one week products liability trial alleging a defect in an amusement ride in Lake Charles, Louisiana.
  • David successfully argued motions in limine to exclude testimony of expert witnesses, including a 2003 judgment excluding plaintiffs' toxicologist and neuropsychologist tendered in support of a class action toxic tort claim in Gretna, Louisiana.
  • David has first chaired over 35 statewide, nationwide and multi-district class action matters in state and federal court dealing with issues ranging from alleged mass toxic fume exposures and damages from hurricane related flooding, to claims for insurance coverage for admissions to Skilled Nursing Facilities and allegations of fraudulent misrepresentations in the taking of applications for insurance.