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Douglas C. Ballantine

Member, Louisville

Doug serves as chair of the Business Torts practice and the Finance Committee at Stoll Keenon Ogden, and he has been a Member of the firm since 1990. He also represents clients through several other practice groups at the firm, concentrating on litigation involving intellectual property rights, complex business and construction disputes, insurance disputes, product liability and personal injury claims.

Doug was the 2018-2019 president of the Kentucky Bar Association. He continues to serve on the KBA Executive Committee as the immediate past president. He serves as a Master in the Brandeis Inn of Court, is a member of the Sixth Circuit Life Member Committee, and is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Speed Museum.

Business Torts and Commercial Litigation: Doug oversees a team of attorneys who represent clients by defending and prosecuting business torts claims, including shareholder and derivative actions, and claims for breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty, bad faith, tortious interference with contractual relations, fraudulent misrepresentation and theft of trade secrets.

Intellectual Property: Doug represents clients in a broad range of intellectual property matters, including copyright and trademark infringement claims, theft of trade secrets, author’s and artist’s rights, trade dress, and unfair competition. Doug is part of a practice group that has a national reach in all facets of intellectual property cases, including patent, copyright, trademark, trade dress, trade secret and unfair competition.

Class Action: Doug represents both plaintiffs and defendants in class actions in state and federal courts. His class action experience includes defense of class action claims by residents allegedly injured by release of chemicals from derailed train cars, defense of claims by purported class of homeowners regarding alleged defects in home construction, prosecution claims regarding cemetery’s failure to bury deceased in agreed-upon plots and vaults, and defense of claims by residents claiming nuisance from hog farming operations

Securities Litigation: Doug has successfully represented clients on alleged insider trading cases, negotiating settlements with the Securities and Exchange Commission to the satisfaction of our clients.

Tort, Trial & Insurance Services: Doug represents corporate clients on product liability claims and virtually all varieties of tort and insurance litigation. His experience includes litigation involving catastrophic injuries including wrongful death, brain damage, severe burns, amputation and paralysis. 

He has extensive experience in handling insurance coverage disputes, for insurers and for policyholders, including declaratory judgment actions in state and federal court, and related claims of bad faith, violation of the Kentucky Unfair Claims Settlement Practices Act and consumer protection statutes.

Construction Law: Doug has represented clients in numerous construction disputes, including claims of defective construction involving a multi-million dollar construction project in Canada, involving multiple lawsuits in multiple Canadian venues; alleged defective design and installation of HVAC and other systems; representing supplier of products for use in construction of multi-billion dollar federal nuclear fuel processing facility; defective roofing on commercial and residential properties; and defective site preparation involving plastic soils.

 

Education
Indiana University
1988, J.D.
American University
1984, B.A.
Admissions
Kentucky
U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit
U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Kentucky
U.S. District Court, U.S. Virgin Islands
U.S. District Court, Western District of Kentucky
United States Supreme Court

Recognition

  • Immediate past president, July 2019 -present
  • President, July 2018- July 2019 Kentucky Bar Association
  • AV Preeminent® Peer Review Rated™ by Martindale-Hubbell®
  • Top 50 Kentucky Super Lawyers®, Business Litigation
  • Kentucky Super Lawyers®, 2007-present
  • Best Lawyers in America®, Lawyer of the Year, 2017
  • Best Lawyers in America®, 2003-present
  • Benchmark Litigation, Local Litigation Star, Environmental; General Commercial; Insurance; Intellectual Property, 2013-2018
  • Litigation Counsel of America, Fellow
  • Chambers USA, Leading Lawyer for Business, Litigation: General Commercial, Litigation: Tort & Insurance Defense, 2014-2018
  • Louisville Magazine Top Lawyer, Copyright/Trademark Law; Personal Injury Law: Defense, 2012; Copyright/Trademark Law and General Litigation, 2013, 2014, and 2018
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Affiliations

  • American Bar Association
  • Kentucky Bar Association: President, 2018-2019; President-Elect, 2017-2018; Board of Governors, 2008-present; Ethics Committee member, 1996-2008; Continuing Education Commission chair, 2002-2007; Finance Committee member, 2003-2007; Professionalism Committee member, 1993-1995
  • Louisville Bar Association, 1990-present; Litigation Section chair, 1999; Intellectual Property Section, 2000-present
  • Sixth Circuit Life Member Planning Committee
  • Sixth Circuit Conference Planning Committee
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Kentucky, Magistrate Judge Merit Selection Panel, chair, 2017-2018
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Kentucky Defense Counsel
  • American Intellectual Property Law Association
  • Speed Art Museum, Board of Trustees
  • Previous Service
  • Blackacre Conservancy, former board member
  • Focus Louisville Alumni Group, former board member
  • Kentucky Supreme Court Civil Rules Committee, former member
  • Legal Aid Society, former board member
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, Advisory Committee on Local Rules, former member
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Work Highlights

Intellectual Property disputes

As lead counsel in a trade name and trade dress infringement action in federal court, Doug successfully established that his client’s unregistered trademarks were protected under the Lanham Act and, after a multi-witness injunction hearing, obtained a preliminary injunction against a competitor in the elder care industry requiring the Defendant to change its name, logo, and signage. See Trilogy Healthcare v. Camelot Leasing, LLC, Civil Action No. 3:18-cv-00307-RGJ, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 144653 (W.D. Ky. Mar. 22, 2019).

Lead counsel representing Kentucky Derby winning jockey in dispute with his agent over breeding rights

Lead counsel in defending claims in federal court against Kentucky Derby winning jockey regarding claims by agent for portion of yearly stud fee from the stallion, Unbridled’s Song. After briefing and argument, case was dismissed by District Court.  On appeal by opposing party, after briefing and argument, U.S. Court of Appeals for 6th Circuit affirmed in all respects.   Adika v. Smith, 466 F.3d 503 (6th Cir. 2006).

Shareholder Derivative Actions

Lead counsel defending action by single, dissident shareholder who brought both derivative claims on behalf of the corporation and direct claims against certain directors. SKO successfully argued in litigation that the dissident shareholder had no standing to assert claims and lacked the ability to bring a derivative action for failure to satisfy the statutory requirements for doing so. The litigation continued to the enforcement of a stock buy-sell agreement, upon which our client was successful in both its enforcement and the valuation of the minority member’s shares.  Conlon v. Haise, Case No. 2014-CA-001581-MR (Ky. Ct. App. 2016).

View All Work Highlights
News Seminars
Bad Lawyers in the Movies, panelist, Kentucky Bar Association Annual Convention, 2002
Discovery of Trade Secrets, Employment Records, Financial Information, Electronic Media and Attorney-Client Communications in Kentucky, Kentucky Academy of Trial Attorneys, 2001
Measures for Secrecy - Discovering and Protecting Trade Secrets, Louisville Bar Association Intellectual Property Section, 2001
Protecting Against Medical Malpractice Claims, Jefferson County (KY) Medical Society, 2001
Discovery of Confidential Business Records in Kentucky, Lorman Education Services, 2000
Protecting Against Accounting Malpractice Claims, Indiana University Southeast, 2000