Four lawyers from Dow Lohnes' Atlanta office have joined Sutherland Asbill & Brennan, after a major Dow Lohnes client, Cox Enterprises, sparked a shake-up in the local office by deciding to spread its legal work among more firms.

Corporate lawyer Matt Block and litigator Jason McCarter joined Sutherland as partners. J.D. Shipman joined as a corporate associate and Stephanie Philips as a litigation attorney.

A Cox spokesman told the Daily Report in a July 1 story that the company will still use Dow Lohnes for communications law, such as FCC-related regulatory matters, but it will shift other work to additional firms. In an unusual twist, Cox said it would continue using Dow Lohnes lawyers if they move elsewhere. Dow Lohnes' communications practice is housed in its Washington office.

"Sutherland has a rock solid reputation and I am privileged to join the partnership," said Block in a statement from Sutherland. He declined to name clients following him to his new firm.

"We're helping a number of folks transition their practices elsewhere," said Peter Canfield of Dow Lohnes. "Matt and Jason and J.D. and Stephanie are all great lawyers. We're glad they're at Sutherland, and we wish them the best."

A Cox spokesman did not respond to a query whether the company would use the now-Sutherland lawyers. The company has several subsidiaries. Cox Communications, the cable and Internet division, accounted for almost two-thirds of the company's 2012 revenue of $15.3 billion. That is followed by Manheim, an auto-auction company; Cox Media Group, which owns newspapers, radio and TV stations, including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and WSB-TV; and AutoTrader.com.

"Sutherland is thrilled to have these new lawyers join our firm and we anticipate that their former clients will continue to work with them," said Sutherland’s chairman, Mark Wasserman.

The Dow Lohnes lawyers' "experience with the media, communications, technology and automotive services sectors further enhances our corporate and litigation profiles," he said.