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Jones Walker Expands Environmental Litigation Practice in Louisiana
Christoffer Friend and Meghan Smith Join Firm
August 15, 2017
NEW ORLEANS

Jones Walker LLP today announced that Christoffer C. Friend has joined as partner and Meghan E. Smith has joined as special counsel in the firm's Environmental Litigation Practice. 

“We are glad to welcome Chris and Meghan to the firm -- they are both excellent lawyers with extensive experience,” said Bill Hines, Managing Partner of Jones Walker. “Their arrival further expands our robust environmental litigation capabilities for the firm’s clients.” 

About Christoffer C. Friend
Mr. Friend is based in the firm’s New Orleans office and represents oil and gas and chemical companies in all aspects of regulation and litigation, including property damage and toxic tort bodily injury, as well as regulatory matters in front of the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, the Office of Conservation and the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources. He is experienced in the rules and regulations which govern exploration and production (E&P) activity in Louisiana, including R 29-B, which provides for standards in oilfield site and pit closures. 

Mr. Friend has litigated cases throughout Louisiana brought under Act 312, which governs all remediation actions involving legacy E&P activity in the state. He represents clients in numerous toxic tort cases ranging from mass tort chemical exposure to pipe yard NORM (Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material) exposure.  He has represented oil and gas clients in NORM exposure cases brought by thousands of plaintiffs throughout the New Orleans area. And, Mr. Friend is currently representing defendants in connection with multiple litigation and arbitration claims arising from a sinkhole in Assumption Parish, Louisiana.

A frequent speaker on environmental, healthcare, and construction issues, Mr. Friend received his Juris Doctor from Tulane University Law School and his Bachelor of Arts from Vassar College.

About Meghan E. Smith
Ms. Smith practices from the New Orleans office and focuses on environmental/toxic tort, energy, and construction litigation and advises clients on regulatory compliance issues. She has defended major corporations, including oil and gas companies and chemical manufacturers, in state and federal litigation and private arbitration related to the sudden appearance of a sinkhole in Assumption Parish, Louisiana; alleged onshore contamination and coastal erosion from legacy oil and gas exploration and production operations; and personal injury claims which consist of latent exposure claims and sudden occurrence incidents in industrial settings and offsite injuries. 

Ms. Smith’s litigation proficiency includes construction disputes; class action defense; workers' compensation claims; indemnification and contract disputes; commercial disputes; and insurance coverage claims. She has extensive experience managing expert witnesses and consultants in connection with litigation matters as well as regulatory compliance issues.

Ms. Smith gives back to the community and, while with her prior firm, she spearheaded the effort to develop and promote the firm's pro bono program locally. Under her leadership, her prior firm was selected as the 2015 Louisiana Pro Bono Law Firm of the Year by the Pro Bono Project of New Orleans and received the 2017 Louisiana State Bar Association Pro Bono Publico Award.  

Ms. Smith received her Juris Doctor from Tulane University Law School with a certificate in Maritime Law and her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pennsylvania. She is a member of the Louisiana State Bar Association, the New Orleans Bar Association, and the Defense Research Institute.