Elizabeth Graddy, a partner of the firm, has extensive commercial litigation experience in federal and state trial and appellate courts, as well as in commercial arbitration. She has particular expertise in business, corporate and real estate disputes, including in the bankruptcy context, as well as insurance coverage, financial institutions, employment matters, and intellectual property protection. Ms. Graddy additionally counsels clients in the restaurant, hospitality, and technology industries, in both transactional and litigation matters.
Ms. Graddy has defended Fortune 100 companies in consumer and other class actions, has represented financial services institutions in a wide gamut of matters, and frequently handles business-to-business disputes in the middle market. She has worked extensively on captive insurance issues involving IRS oversight or investor complaints as well as coverage questions. She currently is developing litigation prevention systems for startups that employ technology and a holistic approach.
Prior to joining SMGQ Law, Ms. Graddy successfully managed her own law firm, and had previously worked at national law firms, including White & Case, and been a prosecutor at the Bronx (N.Y.) District Attorney’s office. Ms. Graddy earned dual bachelor’s degrees from the University of Georgia and a master’s degree from the University of Southern California, in addition to her juris doctorate from New York University School of Law, and is licensed in Florida (2002), Georgia (1999), and New York (1998).
Ms. Graddy’s appellate accomplishments include persuading the Georgia Supreme Court to issue its landmark decision in SRM Group, Inc. v. Travelers Prop. Casualty Co. of America, 308 Ga. 404 (2020), overruling cases including Byers v. McGuire Props., Inc., 285 Ga. 530, a victory that was bookended by reversals she won in 2019 and 2021 in Steedley v. Gilbreth, 359 Ga. App. 551 (2021), and Steedley v. Gilbreth, 352 Ga. App. 179 (2019).
Other notable appellate successes include obtaining a reversal in Zahler v. Nat’l Collegiate Student Loan Trust 2006-1, 355 Ga. App. 458, (2020), securing a writ of prohibition from the Missouri Court of Appeals in Wills v. DePriest, 486 S.W. 3d 459 (Mo. App. 2015), and preparing winning briefs in, among others, Wills v. Arizon Structures Worldwide, L.L.C., 824 F.3d 541 (5th Cir. 2016), Burch v. United Cable Television of Baltimore L.P., 391 Md. 687 (2006), and Kalpakchian v. Bank of America Corp., 832 Fed.Appx. 579 (11th Cir. 2020) (reversing as to Wells Fargo).
Ms. Graddy has been interviewed countless times by national and international news outlets such as ABC News, 48 Hours, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Atlanta Journal and Constitution (e.g., FaceBook/ABC News: Elizabeth Graddy, attorney for Larry English, on Ahmaud Arbery case and New York Times: "Suspect in Arbery Shooting Offered to Help Deal with Potential Trespasser").
- Representation of shareholders of software company in fraud and breach-of-contract action against purchaser, resulting in favorable settlement to avoid criminal referral
- Representation of retail chain in dispute with vendor, successfully obtaining temporary restraining order and final judgment
- Representation of human resources company in dispute with workers compensation insurer, successfully recovering attorneys’ fees
- Representation of energy company executive, successfully preventing major regulatory action
- Representation of captive insurance company in dispute with reinsurer over entire risk pool
- Representation of entertainment executive in dispute with Fortune 50 media conglomerate
- Representation of hospitality services provider in employment dispute resulting in “excellent outcome” for client, per insurer’s evaluation
- Representation of cattle ranching operation in fraud action, successfully recovering all assets
- Representation of local government in dispute with largest corporate taxpayer, successfully defending valuation procedures
- Representation of restaurant chain in collective employment action, successfully defending at summary judgment stage
- Representation of Fortune 50 bank in commercial and consumer litigation with repeated successes at summary judgment stage
- Representation of officers of global agriculture company, successfully shielding them from personal liability
- Representation of Fortune 600 bank in commercial lending disputes
- Representation of insurer in successful subrogation claims against corporate officers
- Representation of major automobile manufacturer in class action by car buyers, successfully defeating at pleadings stage
- Representation of technology startup in dispute with tortiously interfering competitor
- Representation of Fortune 100 telecommunications provider in high-stakes dispute with competing telecommunications provider
- Representation of Fortune 50 insurer in class action by providers
- Representation of Fortune 50 telecommunications provider in consumer class actions, successfully defending against statutory, regulatory and common law claims
- Appellate Practice Section, State Bar of Georgia
- Dispute Resolution Section, State Bar of Georgia
- Founder, White & Case Women’s Initiative