Fowler White Burnett has lured two new shareholders to its South Florida offices, one of them from struggling Am Law 200 firm Sedgwick, which has seen offices close and more than 30 lawyers defect across the country this year.
Former Sedgwick maritime and admiralty litigator Charles Davant becomes a shareholder at Fowler White’s Fort Lauderdale office. He focuses his practice on marine-related cases, as well as products liability defense on behalf of manufacturers in and outside the industry.
“To get back to a firm that has a more established practice in that area was good for me and the clients that came over with me,” Davant said, adding that he had been the only lawyer focused on marine-related cases for Sedgwick in South Florida.
Fowler White, he said, is better known for maritime work and has a few maritime attorneys whom he has known for years. Davant said he was also attracted to Fowler White because he will be able to work out of the firm’s Fort Lauderdale office, which is only a few miles from his home.
Davant declined to comment about the number of partners leaving Sedgwick in Florida and elsewhere. Two other Sedgwick partners left for GrayRobinson’s Fort Lauderdale office in May. A third moved to GrayRobinson’s Miami office in July.
In addition to Davant, Oscar Grisales-Racini joins Fowler White in Miami as a shareholder from his own firm, GRSH Law. Grisales-Racini’s former partner at what was then two-lawyer GRSH Law—immigration attorney Nera Shefer—joined Fowler White earlier this summer. Grisales-Racini will be a shareholder in the firm’s tax, trust and estates, mergers and acquisitions and private equity/venture capital practice groups.
Grisales-Racini’s practice focuses on domestic, inbound and outbound international tax planning, corporate, trusts and estate tax planning issues, cross-border mergers and acquisitions, transfer pricing and EU law. He has written books and articles on international tax, transfer pricing, tax reform in China and on U.S. inbound and outbound tax planning in Latin American and European countries.