What’s a brief history of Leake & Andersson? 

On October 1, 1987, Leake & Andersson opened for business in New Orleans with six partners and two associates, all of whom had previously worked with Hammett, Leake & Hammett. Three of the original L & A attorneys remain partners with the firm: Paul Andersson, George Fagan and Donald McKay. On August 1, 2007, the firm opened its Lafayette office with four attorneys formerly with Roy, Bivins, Judice, Roberts & Wartelle, APLC.

Where are Leake & Andersson’s Locations? 

The firm has offices in New Orleans and Lafayette, Louisiana.

Where is the Firm’s New Orleans Office? 

Since April 1988, the firm’s New Orleans office has been located on the 17th floor of the Energy Centre at the corner of Poydras and Loyola Avenues, which is across the street from the Civil District Court for the Parish of Orleans. We are within a few minutes walking distance from the United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana and the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana. Our offices are situated in close proximity to the French Quarter, which is the location of the Louisiana Supreme Court and the Louisiana Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal.

Where is the firm’s Lafayette Office? 

The firm’s Lafayette office is located on the 6th floor of the Chase Towers building in downtown Lafayette, within a few blocks of the federal district courthouse in Lafayette and the courthouse of the Fifteenth Judicial District Court.

What type of work does Leake & Andersson do? 

Leake & Andersson is primarily a litigation-practice law firm. The firm represents domestic and international corporations as well as insurance companies in a wide variety of casualty, tort and other litigation. The firm represents clients involved in bankruptcy, business, commercial, construction, employment, environmental, insurance coverage, professional liability, real estate, securities and workers’ compensation litigation. The firm also provides general business, commercial and corporate consultation and representation in a wide variety of circumstances and transactions.

What is the geographic scope of the firm’s representation? 

The firm represents clients in Federal and State Courts throughout Louisiana, and also in Mississippi. The firm also represents clients nationally in class actions and Multi-District Litigation proceedings and in securities arbitration disputes throughout the United States. The firm provides insurance coverage consultation and representation on a national basis for certain clients.

Does your firm have sections? 

Although we do not have formal practice sections, the firm’s partners have individualized practices and different interests that include a wide diversity of practice areas. This diversification allows associates to gain experience in various practice areas. Associates are encouraged to express their interest in working in and developing expertise in particular practice areas.

Are associates assigned to work for a particular partner?

Each associate is assigned a partner to be his or her mentor. The associates’ mentor is responsible for the associates’ overall development at the firm. Associates may receive work assignments from the associate’s mentor and from other partners as well. Over time, associates typically tend to perform more work for one or two partners than for other partners in the firm.

When do associates get to handle cases on their own?

Typically, new hires who have just passed the bar work on assignments under a partner’s close supervision. New associates generally begin their litigation practice by preparing pleadings, preparing and reviewing written discovery, interviewing witnesses, taking depositions, drafting motions and related memoranda, attending hearings and keeping clients up to date about developments. Most associates have a substantial caseload by their second or third year, which usually includes smaller exposure cases which the associate handles with limited direction. Though the number of cases that proceed to trial continues to decrease, associates typically participate in trials in their own cases or working with a partner within the first few years after joining the firm. Associates generally work on larger or more complex cases with partners.

What sort of training opportunities does the firm provide?

The firm conducts periodic meetings with associates during which partners and others make presentations about substantive or procedural issues and skills that are essential to developing a litigation practice. We sponsor associates to attend trial training seminars conducted by the International Association of Defense Counsel and the National Institute for Trial Advocacy. We also sponsor and encourage associates to participate in professional, bar activities and continuing education program that promote or concern their practice areas or areas of interest.

How does the firm facilitate an associates’ development?

The firm encourages associates to become actively involved in professional groups and bar activities, to participate in committees and seek leadership roles. All attorneys are required to perform at least 10 hours of pro bono work each year. Associates are given opportunities to write or co-author papers and publications, and to speak at seminars or make other presentations. The firm supports associates who identify business development prospects and opportunities.

How does the firm evaluate an associate’s performance?

One partner is designated to supervise all associates and to meet with each associate monthly in order to discuss the associate’s development, performance and work load, and to address or get feedback on any problems, issues and other matters that may require attention or follow-up. The associate supervisor periodically reports on such matters to the other partners. The firm evaluates associates’ development and performance at least annually, and this process includes self-evaluations by the associates and commentary by partners who work with each associate. Each associate meets with certain partners to discuss and invite feedback on the annual evaluation.

What is the work environment at Leake & Andersson?

One of the primary and longstanding goals of Leake & Andersson has been to create and maintain a workplace where people enjoy working. Because so much of our time is spent at work, we try hard to foster and promote good relations among everyone who works at the firm. We expect our attorneys to be collegial, considerate, professional and understanding; these are critical for our firm’s continued growth and prosperity. While we expect our attorneys to be dedicated and hard-working, the firm also recognizes the importance of “life away from the law.”

Who are Messrs. Leake and Andersson?

Robert E. Leake, Jr. (Bob) started practicing law in 1948 and co-founded Hammett, Leake & Hammett in 1962 where he worked until 1987 when he and Paul Andersson formed Leake & Andersson. Paul Andersson started practicing law in 1971 when he joined Hammett, Leake & Hammett. In 1987, Bob Leake and Paul Andersson formed the firm of Leake & Andersson.