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Baker Donelson Expands Healthcare Law Practice and Establishes North Carolina Presence

Baker Donelson Expands Healthcare Law Practice and Establishes North Carolina Presence

Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz announced the extension of its geographic reach to North Carolina with the addition of six health advocates. Senior healthcare lawyers Kenneth L. Burgess and Matthew W. Wolfe will join the firm as shareholders and will also lead the firm’s office in Research Triangle.

Along with Burgess and Wolfe, Matt Fisher and Iain Stauffer will join the firm as lawyers, and Mysty Blagg and E. Bahati Mutisya will join the firm as partners. Burgess, Fisher, Stauffer and Blagg join the firm from Poyner Spruill LLP, a leading North Carolina law firm. Wolfe and Mutisya are from Parker Poe Adams and Bernstein LLP, a leading regional law firm with eight offices in the United States and over 230 attorneys.


Wolfe’s practice focuses on advising clients on matters relating to health law and policy. He assists clients in resolving disputes with state and federal government entities and assists them in administrative, state and federal litigation. He deals with a wide range of health law matters including false claims actions, Medicare and Medicaid program integrity actions, denials, terminations, prepayment reviews, post payment reviews, procurement issues and payment suspensions. Currently, he is also vice president of the Behavioral Health Practice Group of the American Health Lawyers Association.

Burgess brings with him over 35 years of experience in healthcare law and advises healthcare clients on a wide range of regulatory, compliance, litigation and operational matters. He also assists clients with certificates of need, appeals regarding quality of care issues, Medicare / Medicaid registration and licensing issues, and transactional issues. It helps providers resolve legal issues that arise in hospitals, assisted living communities, home care, hospices, skilled nursing facilities, and other related healthcare settings. He has been recognized as one of the leading practitioners of health law by leading legal publications.

Fisher focuses his practice on HIPAA compliance, information security issues, privacy, certificate of need, and licensing and certification issues. He assists clients in litigation relating to these matters and appears regularly before the Office of Administrative Hearings, state courts and federal courts. He also assists clients in civil litigation matters, defends them in business, construction, commercial and medical malpractice claims, and also advises clients on the acquisition of facilities and practices.

Stauffer represents healthcare providers in complex civil matters relating to healthcare reimbursement, Medicare and Medicaid compliance and enrollment, enforcement actions, licensing and responses to government inquiries. He also assists individual practitioners in their representation in the affairs of the licensing board. He also worked in the North Carolina attorney general’s office for over a decade.

Commenting on his latest role, Wolfe said, “Joining a firm of Baker Donelson’s reputation will be of substantial benefit to my clients. This decision gives them access to a talented group of lawyers who are nationally recognized leaders in healthcare law and offer significant litigation, regulatory and transactional experience. I am delighted to offer my clients an expanded platform with broader services and increased resources and to strengthen Baker Donelson’s presence in North Carolina.

Speaking about his new role, Burgess said, “Joining Baker Donelson alongside Matt and the whole team is really exciting. I was drawn to the firm’s offerings particularly in the health care area and in many other areas of practice. Baker Donelson brings the benefits of a law firm that can be a full service partner for all of my clients’ legal needs. Providing this level of service to my clients is important to me, and Baker Donelson fully shares this commitment to exceptional service.

Richard G. Cowart, chair of Baker Donelson’s department of health law / government relations and public policy, said: “Given the strategic importance of the research triangle in the health care industry, having a presence in North Carolina is a huge asset to our health care law. practice. Matt and Ken have an excellent reputation, and they and their team bring considerable experience to a wide range of regulatory issues facing healthcare providers. We are exceptionally proud to welcome a group of this caliber to our national health practice.

Timothy M. Lupinacci, President and CEO of Baker Donelson, said, “Matt, Ken and their team are an exceptional group of lawyers who fit well into our current healthcare practice, which is one of the country’s best practices and one of our firm’s designated centers of excellence. Serving Baker Donelson’s clients with operations in North Carolina and tracking the trajectory of key industries is of critical importance. These additions further strengthen our presence in North Carolina as well as the many attorneys we have admitted to practice in the state. We expect that we will continue to build on that. “