Heather Isringhausen Gvillo Jun. 19, 2014, 3:32pm

ALTON, Ill. (Legal Newsline) - Asbestos law firm Simmons, Browder, Gianaris, Angelides & Barnerd LLC is merging with the New York law firm Hanly, Conroy, Bierstein, Sheridan, Fisher & Hayes LLP next month, meaning the new firm will have offices stretching from the west coast to the east coast.

The firms announced the merge on June 4. The merge will take effect on July 1.

The new firm will be called Simmons Hanly Conroy and will continue to represent "victims of corporate wrongdoing," a press release explained.

Offices for the new firm will be located in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, St. Louis and Alton, Ill.

"The merger gives us a New York office, expands our attorney depth and creates a streamlined practice with centuries of litigation experience," Chairman John Simmons stated in a press release. "Together, we are positioned as a dominant national leader in asbestos, mass tort and complex litigation matters, and we are especially pleased that Jayne Conroy will continue her leadership role as a named shareholder in the merged firm."

Simmons and Hanly Conroy have been co-counsel partners for over a decade in products liability litigation. Cases the two have worked together on include OxyContin, Chantix, Yaz and Toyota unintended acceleration lawsuits.

"Hanly Conroy and Simmons have worked together on pharmaceutical and other mass tort litigation for more than a decade, bringing justice and compensation to thousands of victims of corporate misconduct," Hanly stated in an email. "The extensive federal court experience of Hanly Conroy lawyers coupled with the highly-skilled, ambitious and numerous mass tort lawyers of Simmons will make for a powerful force for such victims nationwide."

The Simmons firm was founded in 1999 by John Simmons and employs 60 attorneys and 150 professional support staff spread among five offices. The firm focuses on mass tort litigation, namely asbestos, dangerous drugs and medical devices, intellectual property infringement, environmental litigation, consumer protection and contingent fee commercial litigation

Hanly Conroy was founded in 2002 by Paul Hanly and Jayne Conroy. The firm operates out of New York and employs nine attorneys. The firm has assumed leadership roles in high profile, complex litigation of national scope, such as the Sept. 11 litigation and Pinnacle hip replacement litigation.

"The firm's extensive federal court experience and national resources will be a winning combination for clients and position us to not only evolve but thrive in an ever-changing, competitive legal marketplace," Hanly stated in the press release.

Simmons will continue as chairman and Michael Angelides will serve as managing shareholder.

Perry Browder will continue to manage the firm's asbestos department. Hanly will oversee the firm's complex litigation department.

Simmons shareholders Ted Gianaris and John Barnerd will also continue to serve in management roles.

"The name on the door has changed over the years, but this firm has never been about any one person," Simmons stated. "It's always been about doing what's right for our clients. That will never change."

Requests for comment from the Simmons Law Firm went unanswered.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Heather Isringhausen Gvillo at asbestos@legalnewsline.com

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