John P. Wolff III

johnwolff

Partner
701 Main Street
Baton Rouge, LA 70802

M 225 383 3796

F 225 343 9612

John Wolff is a senior partner handling complex litigation, class actions and other difficult disputes, often involving life sciences, oil and gas, construction, environmental legacy and toxic tort claims. John has earned a reputation as a high-stakes courtroom lawyer, at the trial and appellate levels, representing major national corporations in trouble in Louisiana. John has been involved in just about every large, contentious case in Louisiana for the last 30 years, trying many to verdict and, when it is to his client's strategic advantage, settling. For example, he has successfully defended local and state agencies, public and private companies and individuals in:
  • Explosions, accidents and other losses – on oil rigs, industrial locations and the like – with deaths or significant injuries, including the July 1999 explosion at the Kaiser Aluminum & Chemical Corp. plant in Gramercy, LA
  • Catastrophic levee, maritime and other post-hurricane damage
  • Contractual, merchant and premises liability, insurance coverage, immunity and admiralty-related disputes with exposure upwards in the hundreds of millions of dollars
  • Bet-the-farm defense work involving professional malpractice and liability, faulty construction, product liability (including Chinese drywall, medical devices and pharmaceuticals) and asbestos and other toxic tort claims
  • Legacy claims for environmental damage, such as the Bayou Corne sinkhole litigation
He also successfully defended the hydropower industry in a recent decision upheld by the US Supreme Court. John has represented Chubb Corporation for years in Louisiana (a direct-action state) in complex matters, showing a sophisticated understanding of multiple layers of insurance coverage and their impact at all stages of a case. In addition to being good on his feet in front of judges and juries, John can pull together and deploy a legal team and skillfully manage big cases behind the scenes, with massive document discovery and Keogh Cox’s paperless management, multiple parties, joint defense, confidentiality agreements and other complexities. John has also been a leader in the use of courtroom and case management technology, providing greater assurance to his clients and allowing for easier access, assessment, sharing, presentation and responsive communication of reports, documents, pleadings and exhibits. John is a highly-regarded leader in Louisiana's charitable and legal communities, too. He has served, for example, as a guest speaker for the Louisiana Association of Defense Counsel and on the Louisiana State Bar Association's Bench and Bar Section's Ad Hoc Judiciary Committee. Throughout his career, he has been active on non-profit boards, in particular those helping at-risk children.
Additional practices:
  • Trial
  • Premises Liability

Representative Experience

  • Obtained U.S. appellate court ruling, upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court that found FERC preemption of state law claims for the hydropower industry.
  • Secured a permanent injunction, upheld by the Louisiana Supreme Court, prohibiting CRNAs from expanding their scope of practice to include interventional pain procedures.
  • Handled cases involving products in an industrial setting.
  • Obtained many summary judgments in favor of medical device manufacturers.
  • Numerous class action cases.
  • Significant jury trials and appeals.

Professional Affiliations

  • Member, East Baton Rouge Parish
  • Member, Louisiana State Bar Association
    • Environmental Section, Member
    • Bench and Bar Section's, Ad Hoc Judiciary Committee
    • Transition into Practice Program
  • Member, American Bar Association
  • Member, Louisiana Association of Defense Counsel
  • Member, East Baton Rouge Bar Association
  • Member, Defense Research Institute
  • Member, U. S. District Court, Fifth Circuit, Bar Association
  • Member, All State And Federal Courts In Louisiana
  • Louisiana Association of Defense Counsel, Guest Speaker

Honors Awards

  • Judicial Edition, AV Preeminent, Martindale-Hubbell – “Highest Possible Rating in Both Legal Ability & Ethical Standards, Reflecting the Confidential Opinions of Members of the Bar and Judiciary” - 2015
  • Top Lawyers in Louisiana, American Lawyer Media – 2013
  • AV Preeminent, Martindale-Hubbell – 2011
  • Peace Maker Award, Brown & Brown -- 2007

Community Involvement

  • Board of Directors, Baton Rouge Epicurean Society (BRES)
  • Former Board Member, Boys & Girls Club of Greater Baton Rouge
  • Human Resource Chairman, Boys & Girls Club of Greater Baton Rouge

Education

  • J.D., Louisiana State University Paul M. Hebert Law Center
  • B.A., University of Southwestern Louisiana – Cum Laude

Admissions

  • Louisiana, 1984
  • Texas, 1995
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, 2014
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 2013
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, 2013
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, 1987
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana, 1985
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana, 1986
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, 1984

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