D&G Law

Recent News

Guin, Stokes & Evans Wins U.S. Supreme Court Case for Homeowners Thursday, 22 June, 2023

In a 9-0 decision, the Supreme Court in one of GSE’s several governmental equity theft cases, Tyler v. Hennepin County, ruled that a Minnesota law allowing local governments to seize all the equity in a home over much smaller property tax debts is unconstitutional. Read the Supreme Court opinion here.

The Court ruled that when the government takes a person’s home equity to satisfy a property tax debt, it violates the Constitution’s “Takings Clause”, which bars the government from taking private property without paying just compensation.

Writing for the majority, Chief Justice Roberts said “A taxpayer who loses her $40,000 house to the State to fulfill a $15,000 tax debt has made a far greater contribution to the public fisc than she owed. The taxpayer must render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s, but no more.

Additionally, Justice Gorsuch’s concurring opinion (joined by Justice Jackson) concluded that home equity theft may also violate the Constitution’s Excessive Fines Clause, which limits the amount governments can take as punishment for an offense. He said “Economic penalties imposed to deter willful noncompliance with the law are fines by any other name. And the Constitution has something to say about them: They cannot be excessive.”

Charles Watkins and David Guin of GSE, along with Vildan Teske of Teske Law PLLC and Garrett Blanchfield of Reinhardt, Wendorf & Blanchfield filed and have primary responsibility for the Tyler case.  At the Supreme Court, they were joined by the Pacific Legal Foundation and Christina Martin, who argued the case before the Court.

GSE is pursuing class action lawsuits in various states and counties on behalf of property owners whose properties were seized by a local government for property taxes.  If you or your client has been the subject of a governmental foreclosure, please contact Charles Watkins or David Guin if you would like to learn more about your rights and options.

Volatile Financial Markets Reveal Improper Broker Recommendations Monday, 10 October, 2022

2022 has been a difficult year for anyone who relies on their investment portfolio, whether for retirement, college savings, or supplemental income. The pandemic, fallout from the war in Ukraine, backed up supply chains, and Federal Reserve policy have combined to create a perfect storm for securities markets. While the volatile markets of 2022 have been felt by most investors, some have paid an even higher price due to “unsuitable” recommendations by their brokers.

“Suitability” refers simply to the requirement under securities laws that brokers only recommend trades to their customers that are suitable for each such customer, given their individual needs and risk tolerances. For example, a speculative, high risk, investment could be a viable option for a young person with many years left before retirement to recoup any losses. But someone in their 60’s nearing retirement cannot afford to risk their portfolio in the same way. The law accordingly requires brokers to tailor their recommendations to their customers’ needs and risk tolerances.

This year many investors have discovered that their brokers were speculating with their money in risky cryptocurrencies or in so-called “meme” stocks, such as AMC and GameStop.  While the market may have been down across the board, investments in these sorts of particularly speculative gambles have cost some investors their entire life savings.

In addition, the broker is duty-bound to fully understand any recommended investments. This year, for example, has seen one of the worst years for bond investments in history. But some investors who thought they had bought garden-variety, conservative bonds were, in actuality, sold complex derivative investments that have compounded their losses.

If you have lost inordinate amounts in your investment accounts, our attorneys will be happy to review your accounts and the recommendations by your brokers and to advise you of your rights.

Investors Getting Burned by Complex Securities Tuesday, 02 June, 2020

The Wall Street Journal has published a story on how investors have been burned by complex securities in the recent volatility in the stock markets. These securities may take the form of supposed “Certificates of Deposit” or “Notes”, that give the appearance of secure debt investments, but which, in actuality, are highly leveraged investments tied to stock market indices and to complex algorithms tied to the differential between various interest rate differentials. Institutional investors largely avoid these types of investments, so unscrupulous brokers have foisted them on trusting individual clients. Most such brokers did not fully understand the nature and risks of these investments, and accordingly, failed to fulfill their legal obligation to recommend only investments that are suitable for their clients needs. Our firm is representing investors who have seen their savings destroyed by these sorts of investments. Read more here.

Tammy Stokes to Speak on Antitrust Litigation Monday, 19 November, 2018

Photo of attorney Tammy StokesTammy Stokes will speak on November 30, 2018 on the fundamentals of antitrust law and litigation at the Class Actions and Business Litigation seminar sponsored by Cumberland School of Law

All Guin Stokes & Evans LLC Partners Named to the 2018 Listing of Best Lawyers in America Monday, 25 September, 2017

Guin Stokes & Evans, LLC is pleased to announce that every partner in the firm has been named to The Best Lawyers in America, one of the oldest and most respected peer review publications in the legal profession. In addition, firm partner David Guin was named the Birmingham-Securities Litigation “Lawyer of the Year.”

Best Lawyers has published their list for over three decades, earning the respect of the profession, the media, and the public as the most reliable, unbiased source of legal referrals. Its first international list was published in 2006 and since then has grown to provide lists in over 70 countries.

Best Lawyers is the most effective tool in identifying critical legal expertise,” said Best Lawyers CEO Steven Naifeh. “Inclusion on this list shows that an attorney is respected by his or her peers for professional success.”

Lawyers on the Best Lawyers in America list are divided by geographic region and practice areas. They are reviewed by their peers on the basis of professional expertise, and undergo an authentication process to make sure they are in current practice and in good standing.

Guin Stokes & Evans, LLC would like to congratulate the following partners named to the 2018 Best Lawyers in America list:

David Guin

  • Commercial Litigation
  • Securities Litigation [Lawyer of the Year – 2018]
  • Class Actions – Plaintiff


Tammy Stokes  

  • Commercial Litigation


Dawn Evans

  • Securities Litigation
  • Real Estate Litigation


David Guin Named Birmingham Litigation-Securities “Lawyer of the Year” Tuesday, 15 August, 2017

"Lawyer of the Year 2018" imageGuin Stokes & Evans, LLC congratulates firm partner David Guin for being named the Best Lawyers’ 2018 Birmingham Litigation – Securities “Lawyer of the Year”. Only a single lawyer in each practice area in each community is honored as “Lawyer of the Year”.

Guin was also selected by his peers for inclusion in the 24th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America publication in the fields of Commercial Litigation and Plaintiff Class Actions.

Dawn Evans Again Named to Best Lawyers in America listings Tuesday, 15 August, 2017

Guin Stokes & Evans, LLC congratulates firm partner Dawn Evans for again being selected by her peers for inclusion in the 24th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America for her work in Litigation – Real Estate, and Litigation – Securities.

GSE listed in 2017 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America© Tuesday, 01 November, 2016

U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers, for the seventh consecutive year, announced their Best Law Firms rankings, and once again, has included Guin, Stokes & Evans, LLC. We are included in the “Tier 1” listing for Commercial Litigation and Securities Litigation, and in the Tier 2 listing for Real Estate Litigation.

Additionally, David Guin was listed in The Best Lawyers in America© for Commercial Litigation and Securities Litigation, and Dawn Stith Evans was listed for Securities Litigation and Real Estate Litigation.

Firms included in the 2017 Best Law Firms list are recognized for professional excellence with persistently impressive ratings from clients and peers. Achieving a tiered ranking signals a unique combination of quality law practice and breadth of legal expertise.

“U.S. News is the global authority in rankings,” says Tim Smart, executive editor of U.S. News & World Report. “Evaluating law firms is a natural extension of what we do best.”

The 2017 rankings are based on the highest number of participating firms and highest number of client ballots on record. To be eligible for a ranking, a firm must have a lawyer listed in The Best Lawyers in America, which recognizes the top 4 percent of practicing attorneys in the U.S. Over 10,000 attorneys provided more than 800,000 law firm assessments, and over 10,000 clients provided more than 90,000 evaluations.

Firm Included in 2016 “Best Law Firms” Listing by The Best Lawyers in America© Tuesday, 01 December, 2015

Guin Stokes & Evans, LLC is pleased to announce that, as reported in U.S. News & World Reports, it has again been listed in the “Best Law Firms” listing in the 2016 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America© in the categories of Securities Litigation and Real Estate Litigation.

Firms included in the 2016 “Best Law Firms” list are recognized for professional excellence with persistently impressive ratings from clients and peers. Achieving a ranking signals a unique combination of quality law practice and breadth of legal expertise.

The U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” rankings, for the sixth consecutive year, are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their field, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process. Clients and peers were asked to evaluate firms based on the following criteria: responsiveness, understanding of a business and its needs, costeffectiveness, integrity and civility, as well as whether they would refer a matter to the firm and/or consider the firm a worthy

David Guin to speak on Antitrust Litigation Monday, 30 November, 2015

Photo of attorney David GuinDavid Guin is speaking on December 16, 2015 on the topic, “Antitrust Litigation – Plaintiffs’ Perspective,” at the Business & Complex Litigation seminar jointly hosted by CLEAlabama and the Business Torts and Antitrust Section of the Alabama State Bar.