Brackin & Johnson Law Firm

150 West Section Avenue

Foley, Al 36535


455 Magnolia Avenue

Fairhpe, AL 36532


BIRMINGHAM, Alabama - In early September retired Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge Gary Pate was contacted by attorneys on opposing sides in an on-going divorce case.
Pate said they wanted to hire him as a private judge to hear and then rule on their complicated case that had been filed in state court in 2010. 

At first, Pate said, he didn't know what the two attorneys were talking about. "I guess my first thought was 'you're punkin' me,'" he said.

What the two lawyers were calling Pate about was a new Alabama law _ it went into effect July 1 _ in which both sides in a civil or domestic relations case can agree to hire a former or retired Alabama state court judge as a private judge to preside and rule over their case.

"I was surprised it had passed and I had not heard anything about it," Pate said.
This past week Pate presided over a trial in that divorce case. That case was held in a rented courtroom at the Birmingham School of Law.

Former Jefferson County Circuit Court Judge R. A. "Sonny" Ferguson says that case is only the second one he's heard about to be tried under the new "Private Judge" law that hasn't gotten much attention.

Ferguson, who pushed for the new law, tried the first case in August. It too was a divorce case. 
Under the new law, former retired judges can apply to be on a private judge list maintained by the Alabama Center for Dispute Resolution, Ferguson said. The judges must have at least six years of experience on the bench and in the area of law for which they are being hired, he said.

As of today, there were 22 former judges from around Alabama on that list. 
Only non-jury cases involving domestic relations, tort cases such as automobile accidents or property damage, and contract disputes can be handled by private judges under the new law, Ferguson said. The state of Alabama and utilities can't be parties in the cases.

Published in blog
Tuesday, 03 April 2012 23:56

Motorcycle Accidents

If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident you need an experienced, trusted attorney. Right away.

If you have been in an accident while driving your motorcycle the attorneys with Brackin McGriff & Johnson will represent you to make sure you are fully covered and receive just compensation.

Motorcycle accidents often cause serious injuries to the motorcyclist, and they can leave you with expensive hospital bills and disable you from returning to work. If you are in an accident, Brackin McGriff & Johnson will fight for your legal rights to ensure that you are protected.

Motorcycle accidents are complex and require a skilled legal team

Often, motorcyclists don’t have the same amount of insurance coverage as car drivers, so in order to be fully protected, you need a skilled attorney who can carefully review your accidental injury policy and get you the coverage that will fully cover your hospital bills.

We advise that you carefully document any and all injuries following a motorcycle accident and receive prompt medical care.

How the Law Offices of Brackin McGriff Johnson will help you

When you work with our team, we’ll:

  • Ensure you receive proper medical treatment for your injuries
  • Obtain compensation for your lost wages
  • Review all available sources of insurance
  • Negotiate directly with the insurance companies
  • Investigate your accident
  • Obtain evidence, including witness statements, photographs, and expert opinions
  • Evaluate police, investigation and operator reports
  • Have a medical expert obtain and evaluate medical records
  • Seek reimbursement for your medical bills and other expenses related to your accident
  • Negotiate your claim in order to achieve a successful result for you
  • Have an expert analyze any long-term financial needs, future wage loss, or medical care

Don’t delay—call our team today

The law offices of Brackin McGriff Johnson will act quickly and work closely with you to ensure you are taken care of after a motorcycle accident. We understand how frightening and traumatic a motorcycle accident can be. .

Published in Practice Areas
Friday, 25 November 2011 21:49

Product Liability

When a defective product either causes an accident or causes injuries that should have been avoidable, the manufacturer may be held legally responsible. Many law firms advertise for these cases, but very few truly have the experience, expertise and resources to effectively handle them. Brackin McGriff & Johnson has an unparalleled track record handing cases involving defective automobiles, but we also have extensive experience handling cases involving all sorts of defective products.

At Brackin McGriff & Johnson there is no doubt we have what it takes.

If you or your client has a potential defect case, experience and results matter.

Baldwin County Product Liability Attorney

Our dedicated trial attorneys represent clients who have been catastrophically injured and those who have lost loved ones in auto accidents as a result of defective products and vehicles. The following are some of the major types of defects we can successfully handle:

  • Tire failure: When tires are poorly designed and manufactured, tread separation and tire blowouts can cause rollovers and other serious accidents and injuries.
  • Air bag defects: Our attorneys are experienced at pursuing claims for injuries caused by air bags that fail and do not go off when they should, air bags that deploy late, and air bags that are too powerful and cause catastrophic injuries.
  • Defective fuel systems: Defectively designed and manufactured fuel systems can turn relatively minor accidents into major ones by sparking post-collision fires. If a person survives a wreck, he or she should not be burned up in a fire.
  • Seat and seat belt defects: When the seats in an automobile are not manufactured to strict crashworthiness standards, they can collapse during a wreck, resulting in serious injuries to those in the seats and to adults and kids sitting behind them.
  • Rollovers and crushed roofs: Whether rollovers are caused by vehicle instability or driver negligence, the injuries involved can drastically increase when roofs crush inward due to design defects.
  • Crashworthiness: Auto manufacturers know their vehicles will be involved in crashes, and they have a responsibility to design their cars to protect drivers and passengers from being unnecessarily injured or killed. That legal principle is called "crashworthiness." We have successfully handled a variety of cases where the structure of the vehicle or some part was not designed and built to effectively protect occupants and be "crashworthy."

Going up against major auto manufacturers is not easy. These companies have major resources at their command and are willing to use those resources to fight injured consumers' claims. You need lawyers on your side who are prepared to take on these powerful corporations.

If an auto manufacturer is responsible for the harm that has been done to you and your family, our firm has the resources, the experience and the reputation to pursue the full justice you deserve. Don't hesitate to contact us to have our attorneys evaluate your case.

Product Liability Attorney

Published in Practice Areas
Friday, 25 November 2011 21:20

Truck Accident

Baldwin County Truck Accident Attorney

Truck accident cases can be very different from car accident cases. You need truck accident attorneys who are experienced in handling truck accidents due to the nature and complexity of the issues involved. At Brackin McGriff & Johnson we have the training and experience to handle your complex Baldwin County truck accident case. What you (and your attorney) should know about truck accidents:

Foley Alabama Semi-Truck Accident Attorney

Certain truck driving techniques and driver conduct are regulated across the industry. These matters include: driver qualifications, driver training, countermeasures taught to handle various traffic conditions, safety management, and defensive driving.

Regulations for trucks include rules and guidelines issued by the Office of Motor Carriers within the United States Department of Transportation and regulations issued by the Alabama Department of Motor Vehicle Safety.

Regulated areas include general inspection, brake performance, wheel retention and deterioration, tire inflation, tire wear and deterioration, steering system performance, trailer coupling, vehicle lighting, and pay load and cargo characteristics.

Trucking companies should properly train and supervise drivers, monitor driver logs, address complaints made against drivers, maintain reasonable delivery schedules, properly load trucks, and guard against driver fatigue. Unfortunately, many companies do not do this, with tragic results.

Truck accidents often occur not only as a matter of driver or company error, but due to driver fatigue and use of stimulants or alcohol. Knowing the exact causation of an accident is critical to your case.

The knowledge and commitment to properly investigate the cause of a truck accident often means the difference between winning and losing. Prompt action must be taken to investigate before valuable information is lost and to properly identify the at-fault parties, insurance companies, and causation issues involved in your accident.

Baldwin County truck accident lawyers Brackin McGriff & Johnson have experience in investigating and litigating heavy-truck and light-truck accidents. We have successfully handled dozens of cases involving truck and automobile accident cases. We thoroughly investigate truck accident cases and whenever necessary hire qualified experts to assist in proving your case.

Truck Accident Resources:

  • Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Government regulations, inspection of trucks, moving and equipment violations for individual trucking companies.
  • Safety and Fitness Electronic Records System (SAFER) Information on trucking companies registered with the Department of Transportation.
  • National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Federal administration overseeing traffic safety
  • National Center for Statistics and Analysis
    U.S. Department of Transportation statistics analysis bureau.
  • United States Department of Transportation
    The federal department regulating transportation.

Baldwin County Personal Injury Attorney

Published in Practice Areas
Friday, 25 November 2011 21:05

Automobile Injuries

If you or a loved one have been injured in a car wreck, we want to help. It is important to speak with a qualified attorney such as the lawyers in our firm, as soon as possible after the injuries are sustained. In many cases, there is critical evidence to be gathered the hours or days following the accident which could be lost forever if not collected and preserved immediately.

Automotive crashes may involve multiple vehicles, a single vehicle, a motorcycle, RV, a large transit vehicle or a tractor trailer, or even farm equipment, and could be caused by a product defect or driver negligence. The injuries sustained can change your life forever, or end it, in an instant and through no fault of your own.

Automobile accidents can be caused in a number of ways, including but not limited to vehicle impact from the front, side, or rear. In some cases, vehicle rollover can have devastating results.

Single vehicle accidents should not be disregarded or chalked up to “just an accident.” Many are caused by a design defect or mechanical problem. Single vehicle accidents resulting in significant injury should be thoroughly investigated, especially if the injury appears to be disproportionate to the damage to the vehicle.

Most people are familiar with the idea that the automobile accident is the other driver’s fault. The other driver’s fault or negligence may appear in many different forms, such as drowsy driving, distracted driving, driving while using controlled substances, whether prescribed or not, texting and driving, drunk driving/ DUI, speeding, driving erratically, and others.

Still other automobile injuries can be attributed to the neglect of others, such as dram shop cases which may hold the owner of a drinking establishment liable for over serving a patron, who thereafter injures someone behind the wheel. 

Published in Practice Areas
Saturday, 22 October 2011 12:01

Personal Inury and Accident Attorneys


Baldwin County Personal Injury Attorney

At Brackin, McGriff & Johnson our clients come first—you come first. We aggressively represent those who have been hurt in Baldwin County to win justice and get compensation for injured victims.

Accident Injury Claims Experience

With decades of combined experience we have helped clients in Alabama and throughout the country win compensation for their injuries and suffering from the wrongdoing or negligence of others.

Our Alabama accident attorneys have defended the rights of clients in and out of court, and we will fight to get the best possible outcome for you in your time of need. When you’ve been injured, get real help—call Brackin, Johnson & McGriff or contact us online.

Personal Injury Claims Commitment & Results

Our commitment to you is simple. We create a team to get top results for you. When you choose representation with Brackin, Johnson & McGriff, you choose passionate and professional Alabama injury lawyers who know how to win.

We’ll keep you informed throughout the duration of your case and do what’s in your best interest, whether it’s settling your case or going to trial. We do what it takes to win and won’t hesitate to enlist subject matter experts, investigators, or other firms to work on special cases if necessary—at no additional cost to you.

Accident Attorney

When you’ve been injured, the choice is clear. Call Brackin, McGriff & Johnson today and get tough representation that will get you the best possible results for your claim.

Published in Practice Areas
Tuesday, 05 July 2011 12:10

Areas of Practice

Alabama Law Library

Our attorneys at Brackin, McGriff and Johnson are well versed in many areas of law. Below are just a few examples of what we can do for you.

Business Law

Business Organizations, Formation, and Dissolution- Think you are ready to move to the next step for your business? Our attorneys are well versed in helping you take that next step by finding which type of business organization is right for you and your associates, and then guiding you through the process of forming that type of organization.

Family Law | Divorce

Divorce- At Brackin, McGriff, & Johnson, we understand that the process of going through a divorce is difficult enough. We want to work for you to make sure that your legal experience during this difficult time is as easy and painless as possible. We will fight hard for your rights while also remaining understanding and compassionate to your needs.

Child Support

Child Support - We are committed to obtaining a justified modification of child support, custody, or other orders when your circumstances change after divorce.

Child Custody

Child Custody- We are also committed to establishing a child custody and visitation arrangement that serves your children’s best interests and protects your most valued relationships.

DUI Defense

DUI- Preparation is the key to a successful drunk driving defense, and at Brackin, McGriff, & Johnson, we put forth our greatest effort to make sure we are prepared to provide you the best possible defense for your DUI case.

Probate Law

Estate Planning- We tailor our services to help our clients protect, preserve and pass down what they’ve worked so hard to build.

Juvenile Law

Juvenile- We at Brackin, McGriff, & Johnson want to provide the best possible defense for your child in their time of need.

Personal Injury

Personal injury- Our attorneys and staff take great pride in helping injured people not only recover from their injuries, but also recover their lives. If you have suffered a personal injury, if you are disabled and cannot work, or if a family member had died in an accident because of negligence, we want to hear your story.

Real Estate

Real Estate- Our attorneys have broad capabilities in real estate development, leasing, and financing. We are also ready to provide help over a wide range of real estate issues such as landlord/tenant disputes, borrower/lender disputes, boundary line disputes, just to name a few.

Estate Planning

Wills, Power of Attorney, and Advanced Health Care Directives- We are ready to provide you the services you need in creating a will that will protect your family’s future interests.

Criminal Defense

Criminal Law – Brackin, McGriff, and Johnson are also well prepared to meet any and all of your needs regarding pending criminal cases.

Baldwin County Attorney

Published in website info
Tuesday, 05 July 2011 12:09

J. Byron Brackin, III

Byron Brackin - Brackin McGriff JohnsonByron Brackin was born and raised in Baldwin County, Alabama, graduating from Bayside Academy in 1999.

Byron attended Birmingham Southern College, graduating in 2003. Thereafter, Byron attended the Mississippi College School of Law, and graduated with a Doctor of Jurisprudence in 2006.  Upon graduation, Byron joined the firm of Brackin, McGriff and Johnson, P.C.


Byron practices extensively in the areas of:

Business Organizations Drug Charge Defense
Child Support DUI Defense
Civil Litigation Juvenile Defense
Condominium Law Personal Injury
Criminal Defense Probate Law & Estates
Divorce Proceedings Real Estate Law


Tuesday, 05 July 2011 12:07

Kelly A. McGriff

Kelly McGriff - Brackin McGriff Johnson

Kelly McGriff was raised in Baldwin County, Alabama, and graduated from Fairhope High School in 1986. Upon graduation from high school, Kelly attended the University of Alabama, obtaining his undergraduate degree in 1990. He thereafter attended the University of Alabama School of Law obtaining his Doctor of Jurisprudence in 1993.

After law school, Kelly was employed with the Baldwin County District Attorney's Office. In 1994, Kelly and Buddy formed Brackin and McGriff, P.C., which later became Brackin, McGriff and Johnson, P.C.

Kelly's practice is developed along two, distinct tracks.

He practices in the areas of civil litigation, probate practice, trusts, wills, business law, guardianships, estates, real property, estate planning, family law, as well as working as a civil and domestic mediator. He represents both plaintiffs and defendants.

Further, Kelly has spent more than ten years working in virtually every aspect of communications law and related fields, including regulatory, transactional, litigation, legislative and land use in both the private and public sectors, including Internet services and technologies; conventional and emerging wireless services; telecommunications equipment development; and other high-technology applications.

Kelly is a past President of the Baldwin County Bar Association, Fairhope Sunset Rotary Club, and former counsel of the Baldwin County Republican Party. He serves on the Baldwin County Bar Association's Standing Committee on Domestic Relations Practice.

Kelly is an adjunct professor at Faulkner State Junior College, and the Associate Municipal Judge for Orange Beach, Alabama.

Tuesday, 05 July 2011 12:06

Julian B. "Buddy" Brackin

Buddy Brackin - Brackin McGriff JohnsonBuddy Brackin was born and raised in Marengo County, Alabama and graduated from Thomaston High School in 1968. Upon graduation from high school, Buddy attended Marion Military Institute for one year and graduated from Troy University in 1972.

He thereafter attended the University of Alabama School of Law obtaining his Doctor of Jurisprudence in 1976 as well as his Masters Degree in Public Administration. After law school, Buddy was employed with the State of Alabama Attorney General’s Office in Montgomery, Alabama. In 1977, Buddy relocated to Baldwin County, Alabama. In 1986, Buddy formed Julian B. Brackin, P.C. which later became Brackin, McGriff and Johnson, P.C.

Buddy practices extensively in the areas of Criminal Defense, DUI, Condominium Law, Civil Litigation, Real Estate, Banking Law, Business Organizations, Divorce, Juvenile, Child Support, Personal Injury, and Estate matters.

Buddy is a past President of the Baldwin County Bar Association and currently serves as a member of the Baldwin County Judicial Selection Committee as the representative of the Baldwin County Bar Association. Buddy also serves on the Standing Committee on Practice and Procedureand and is registered on the Alabama State Court Mediator Roster.

Buddy has been the Municipal Judge of the Cities of Robertsdale, Alabama and Orange Beach, Alabama since 1980 and 1994, respectively. He was a founding Director of Vision Bank and currently serves as a director of Capstone Bancshares, Inc.

At the law office of Brackin and Johnson, we represent clients throughout the Gulf Coast region of Alabama, including those in Robertsdale, Foley, Daphne, Spanish Fort, Mobile, Summerdale, Bay Minette,

No representation is made that the quality of the legal services to be performed is greater than the quality of legal services performed by other lawyers.

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