Nick P. Panayotopoulos
3344 Peachtree Road, NESuite 2400Atlanta, GA 30326
T: 404.832.9540F: 404.875.9433
Nick’s broad-based civil litigation practice focuses primarily on class actions and other commercial litigation, construction litigation, professional liability, consumer financial services, and complex torts. Known for his mastery of (and excelling in) complex, high-stakes cases, Nick is often referred such cases by the most recognized and well-regarded litigation firms in the country.
He has represented his clients in litigation and arbitration of more than 100 state and federal cases throughout the nation, including claims with thousands of plaintiffs. Nick has on several occasions been hired to defend claims where the disputed amounts exceeded $1 billion and has advised on the prosecution of multi-billion dollar claims.
Nick’s practice is exemplified by his defense of thousands of claims in the highly publicized Chinese-manufactured drywall multi-district litigation. He was appointed to the Defense Steering Committee by the Honorable Eldon E. Fallon of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, where he defended numerous class and direct actions. Nick has defended many well-known manufacturers, power companies, natural resource companies, construction firms, and law firms that choose him for their “bet the company” litigation.
AV® Preeminent rated in Products Liability, Litigation, and Commercial Law by Martindale-Hubbell, Nick is recognized by his clients and adversaries for “fierce, tenacious and conscientious client advocacy” and for “excelling in complex litigation matters where numerous attorneys are involved.”
Emory University, B.A., 1990
Tulane University Law School, J.D., cum laude, 1993
Bar & Court Admissions
- State Bar of Georgia
- Alabama State Bar
- New York State Bar
- U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia
- U.S. District Court, Middle District of Georgia
Defended claims covering allegedly defective construction product (after firm tried the first nationwide contested trial) and settled more than 4,000 claims, over 300 state court cases, 32 class actions, and multi-district litigation ("MDL") in Louisiana in claims of hundreds of millions against the client. Client paid nothing out of pocket, even though policy limits were a tiny fraction of actual damages.
Defended, and was selected to be part of the Defense Steering Committee, numerous mining and timbering defendants, including Massey Coal and Massey Energy, from class action and other claims for flooding damage brought by thousands of homeowners and businesses in what is believed to have been, at the time, the largest mass tort claim in West Virginia history.
Defended all members of the compensation committee of the board of directors of a publicly traded company against class action brought by shareholders alleging breach of fiduciary duty and seeking damages in connection with allegedly spring loaded stock options grants and excessive compensation.
Defended well known national supplier of construction products in nationwide putative class action brought by building owners and condominium associations alleging the sale of defective piping product.
Nationwide class action voluntarily dismissed and Plaintiffs and Plaintiffs’ counsel stipulated to never refile claims as a class action, following the filing of Motion to Dismiss Class Allegations or to Deny Class Certification. The case was removed to a federal district court within the Eleventh Circuit, and the Motion was filed as the first responsive pleading, before any discovery was conducted by any party.
Advised on litigation strategy concerning multi-billion dispute concerning DOE’s Nuclear Waste Fund.
Nationwide class actions voluntarily dismissed after settlement of individual Plaintiff’s claims with nominal contribution from client, following the filing of Motion to Dismiss Class Allegations or to Deny Class Certification. Motion was filed as first responsive pleading in the “Rocket Docket”, the Eastern District of Virginia.
Successfully handled numerous FDCPA and TCPA cases.
Consulted on nationwide class action against manufacturer of construction products on behalf of owners of commercial real estate buildings.
Defended numerous mass tort litigations throughout the country, including multi-district litigations and class actions such as those involving building construction materials and other products.
Recovered in excess of $10 million for clients in 2015. Recovered well over $50 million in cash or other consideration for clients in last five years.
Often called on to advise manufacturers and businesses in class action litigation.
Defended a major power company in a certified class action lawsuit with more than 3,300 claimants. Plaintiffs claimed tens of millions in damages. Case settled for $1.45 million, less than estimated cost of defense.
Obtained summary judgment for general contractor in a highly publicized contractual dispute over construction of a jail in Alabama.
Prosecuted claims for over $100 million against foreign businesses.
Awards & Recognitions
Martindale-Hubbell®, AV Preeminent Rating 4.9/5.0, with "high ethical standing"
Professional & Community Activities
American Bar Association
Atlanta Bar Association
Cobb County Trial Lawyers Association, Former Vice President and Treasurer
News & Publications
Panayotopoulos, Nick and Nan Rigby, "Consider a 'Prevailing Party' Clause in Employee Contracts," Daily Report, 2 Apr. 2018.
"Legal Alert: Ninth Circuit 'Missile Strike of a Ruling' Curtails Ability to Certify Nationwide Settlement Classes," 25 Jan 2018.
"Legal Alert: US Supreme Curt Continues to Limit State Court Jurisdiction Over Out-of-State Corporations," 26 June 2017.
"The Unexpected Benefits of Pro Bono," Fulton County Daily Report, 12 Aug 2016.
"Litigation Alert: Cell Phones as Carcinogens," National Product Liability Association's Brief, Sep 2012.