Langley joins law firm Watson-Spence; court case dismissed



ALBANY, Ga. — Rick Langley, formerly of Langley and Lee, became “of counsel” this week to Albany law firm Watson Spence, coinciding with the dismissal of the case he had filed in Dougherty Superior Court last month against his former co-workers.

Regarding his new position at Watson Spence, he said he was happy to embrace the role.

“It is a great law firm,” Langley said. “I am proud to associate myself with this firm.”

On Dec. 10, Langley filed a petition for a temporary restraining order and injunction, court documents show.

In the petition, he contended that he was notified by co-workers Donald Lee, Joseph Durham and David Orlowski of his termination — and that they intended to restrict access to his office, files, financial information and otherwise interfere with his ability to represent clients and provide an orderly separation from the firm.

An order signed by Dougherty Superior Court Judge Stephen Goss, acting on the restraining order, prohibited the listed defendants from taking action that could cause any interruption to Langley’s representation of his clients, court documents show.

All three Dougherty Superior Court judges recused themselves from presiding over hearings to determine whether the injunction would be granted due to their regular contact with the lawyers involved, prompting Judge O. Wayne Ellerbee to be appointed to the case.

Court documents show that a voluntary dismissal without prejudice was filed on Wednesday morning, effectively closing the case.

Earlier this week, The Albany Herald received confirmation from an Albany marketing firm that Langley had joined Watson Spence.

On Dec. 11, Lee, Durham and Orlowski filed a motion requesting reconsideration of the restraining order.

In so doing, they argued that the restriction of access was not the way it was described in Langley’s complaint, calling his averment “demonstrably false” — and that the ultimate result was the court making a decision based on inadequate information.

Langley said that the issues in the case had been resolved and that there was no need for litigation.

Durham said Thursday that the case had been resolved and that his firm was looking forward to continuing to serve its clients.

Langley, an Albany native, co-founded Langley and Lee in 1990.

He attended Emory University and received his juris doctorate from the University of Georgia School of Law, and has since built a practice focused primarily on the health care industry and general business law with an emphasis on litigation and business transactions.