Joseph A. Kelly - Frost Brown Todd LLC

Joseph A. Kelly

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2008
Phone: 615-251-5588

Joe has 20 years of experience helping companies solve and avoid legal problems. His practice focuses on Business Restructurings, Commercial Litigation, and Employment Law.

In his Business Restructurings practice, Joe represents committees, lenders, trustees, unsecured creditors and debtors in commercial workouts and bankruptcies. He has substantial experience in contested confirmation hearings on behalf of both creditors and debtors.  He also represents traditional and mezzanine lenders across the country in complex debt and asset restructurings and asset dispositions in and out of bankruptcy court. He has substantial experience both prosecuting and defending preference, fraudulent conveyance, and complex commercial fraud actions. He also regularly drafts complex loan agreements and related secured and mezzanine transaction documents, cash collateral orders, forbearance agreements, intercreditor agreements, and related agreements and pleadings on behalf of lenders and debtors.

In his Commercial Litigation practice, Joe represents business clients in a wide range of matters such as business valuation disputes, trade secret disputes, construction litigation, healthcare litigation, general contract disputes, and disputes arising from asset and stock purchase agreements. He also provides advice to senior executives and boards of directors on risk management and strategic responses to difficult situations.

In his Employment Law practice, Joe provides day-to-day advice and counseling to private and public company senior management and human resources professionals on all aspects of employer/employee relationships. He negotiates and drafts contracts, including employment agreements, noncompete agreements, confidentiality agreements, consulting agreements, option agreements, and severance agreements. When litigation arises, Joe aggressively defends his clients' interests in matters including Title VII, FMLA, ADA, ADEA, wrongful discharge, contract, and noncompete litigation. He has represented business clients in courts across the country and before numerous state and federal agencies.

The University of Tennessee at ChattanoogaBA 1988University of ChicagoJ.D. 1991
Middle District of Tennessee Federal Court CommitteeNashville Bar AssociationTennessee Bar AssociationAmerican Bar AssociationTennesee State Bar

Case History

Non-Compete and Employment Litigation
  • Represented national laboratory company in numerous employment actions in state and federal courts.
  • Prosecuted and defended non-compete actions for businesses in numerous industries including healthcare, retail, manufacturing, technology, service, and transportation.
  • Defended a leading international furniture maker and retailer in employment actions in state and federal courts across Tennessee – claims included race discrimination, sexual harassment, age discrimination, retaliatory discharge, FMLA, and breach of employment contract.
  • Defended a leading national home healthcare company against Title VII, FMLA and other actions in state and federal courts in Tennessee, Georgia, Nevada, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Missouri.
  • Defended medical college in suit alleging age discrimination, COBRA violation, Tennessee Human Rights Act violation, conversion, and retaliation against ERISA whistleblower.
  • Defended the nation's largest not-for-profit community service organization in employment actions in state and federal courts in Middle Tennessee.

Commercial Litigation
  • Represented one of nation's largest home healthcare companies in breach of contract action related to asset purchase agreement.
  • Represented mezzanine debt and equity holder in disputes over valuation of stock warrant; interference with contract claim; and estate of guarantor/key man insurance policy regarding insurance proceeds and valuation of equity interest.
  • Defended publicly traded healthcare company in action for defamation, malicious prosecution, and interference with contract.
  • Represented equipment Lessor in proceeding for writ of possession and damages against multiple defendants.
  • Represented electrical contractor in dispute related to construction of department store.
  • Represented leading metal producer in breach of contract action with aluminum processor.
  • Obtained injunction for financial transactions technology company in unfair competition suit against competitor.
  • Defended lender in action involving lender liability, defamation, breach of contract, Tennessee Consumer Protection Act, Fair Debt Collection Practices Acts, and Fair Credit Reporting Act.
  • Represented beneficiaries in elective share dispute in Probate Court and in appointment of an administrator.
  • Represented transportation company in breach of contract suit.
  • Represented lender in complex fraud action related to failure of large cotton concern.
  • Defended hospital in breach of contract suit by physician.

Business Restructurings
  • Prosecuted and defended numerous preference and fraudulent conveyance actions.
  • Represented secured and mezzanine lenders in numerous financing transactions and workouts including drafting complex loan agreements and related transaction documents, cash collateral orders, forbearance agreements, and intercreditor agreements.
  • Represented client in successful purchase of over $8,000,000 in secured debt and restructure of debt with borrower.
  • In re: Fairview Club Properties, LLC, et al (Bankr. M.D. Tenn) - Successfully represented Lender in all facets of case including contested confirmation hearing with result of denial of confirmation and liquidation of debtors.
  • In re: Van Becelaere (Bankr. M.D. Tenn) - Successfully represented Debtors in contested confirmation hearing.  Obtained cramdown confirmation over objection of creditor.
  • In re: Nukote International, Inc., et al. (Bankr. M.D. Tenn.) - Represented Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors in the bankruptcy of international toner manufacturer.
  • In re: A & F Electric (Bankr. M.D. Tenn) - Successfully represented Debtor in contested confirmation hearing.  Obtained cramdown confirmation over objection of creditor.
  • In re: Ronnie R. Wallace & Sarah V. Wallace (Bankr. M.D. Tenn.) – Represented secured creditor in reorganization including multiple §363 collateral sales and cash collateral issues.
  • In re: M2 Direct (Bankr. N.D. Ga.) – Represented secured lender of software technology company in all facets of Chapter 11 bankruptcy, from cash collateral to sale of property and liquidation of debt.

Office Location

The Pinnacle at Symphony Place, Suite 1900
150 Third Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37201
United States

Practice Areas

Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights / Insolvency and Reorganization Law
Litigation - Labor and Employment