John_Freeland (Click for Virtual Business Card)
Education: Hale holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from the University of Mississippi in 1979 and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Mississippi School of Law in 1986. While in law school, Hale won the trial advocacy competition and served on the National Trial Competition Team. Hale is a qualified mediator pursuant to the applicable Mississippi Supreme Court Rules.
Legal Experience: Hale’s Mississippi and West Tennessee practice includes insurance, personal injury, products liability, and insurance coverage defense; representation of creditors in bankruptcy cases; representing individuals and businesses as both plaintiffs and defendants in contract, real property, corporate, trust and estate litigation, and transactional and estate work for local clients. Hale is a member of theNational Academy of Elder Lawyers(NAELA), theMississippi Gerontological Society (MGS), and the Association of Attorney Mediators.
Military Service: Hale served in the Navy as a gunnery officer on board the USS Ainsworth (FF-1090) where he earned his surface warfare qualification, operationally served as Underway Officer of the Deck, and received three sea service awards and two naval expeditionary awards for service in the Mediterranean off Beirut, the Indian Ocean, and the Persian Gulf. He left the Navy as a Lieutenant (0-3) to attend law school.
Legal Service: Hale previously served as President of the Young Lawyers Division of the Mississippi Bar, as a member of the Mississippi Bar Commission’s Executive Committee, and as Editor of The Mississippi LawyerMagazine. He has served as a faculty member of various continuing legal education seminars on attorney ethics, bankruptcy, church property litigation, estate planning, and protecting the interests of the elderly. For several years, Hale has represented St. Andrews’ Presbytery and recently began representing the Presbyterian Church of the United States in matters relating to church property, litigation, and transactions. In 2007, Hale presented a program to Presbytery attorneys throughout the country concerning church property litigation as it applies to the church constitution and state law.
Awards/Professional Recognition: Hale has received an AV Peer Review Rating ® from Martindale-Hubbell. According to Martindale-Hubbell, “AV Preeminent is a significant rating accomplishment – a testament to the fact that a lawyer’s peers rank him or her at the highest level of professional excellence.” In 1995, Hale was selected as the Outstanding Young Lawyer in Mississippi. He has since been selected as a Bencher of the American Inns of Court, a litigation honorary. In recognition of Hale’s public service, the Oxford Rotary Club awarded him the Annual Four Avenues of Service Award. In his youth, Hale was an Eagle Scout and received the Hornaday Awardfor Exceptional Service for Conservation and Environmental Improvement by B.S.A. in conjunction with the New York Zoological Society.
Reported Cases: In re Mid-South Business Associates, LLC, 555 B.R. 565 (Bkrtcy.N.D.Miss. 2016) ;Coleman & Coleman Enterprises, Inc. v. Waller Funeral Home, 106 So. 3d 309 (Miss. 2012); In re Oxford Expositions LLC, 469 B.R. 647 (Bkrtcy.N.D.Miss. 2012); South Carolina Ins. Co. v. Keymon, Et al., 2006-CA-02051-SCT (Miss. 2008); In Re Kennington, 393 B.R. 430 (Bankr. N.D.Miss. 2008) Bailey v. Estate of Kemp, 955 So. 2d 777 (Miss. 2007);Lend Lease Asset Management, L.P. v. Cobra Security, Inc., 912 So. 2d 471 (Miss. 2005); Pulliam v. Chandler, 872 So. 2d 752 (Miss Ct. App. 2004); Walker v. Delta Steel Bldgs. and Builders, 878 So. 2d 113 (Miss. Ct. App. 2003);Ford v. Emhart, Inc., 755 So. 2d 1263 (Miss. Ct. App. 2000); Esmark Apparel Inc. v. James, 10 F. 3d 1156 (5th Cir. 1994); Tyson v. Moore, 613 So.2d 817 (Miss. 1992).
Community Service: Locally, Hale is actively involved in his church having served as an elder, Sunday school teacher, an attorney for St. Andrews Presbytery. Hale also serves on the board of Oxford Medical Ministries, which provides local indigent health care.
Family: Hale resides in Oxford with his wife, Cynthia, CCRN, a nurse in the intensive care unit of Baptist Memorial Hospital – NM. He has two children: Catherine graduated from Hanover College in Madison, Indiana and graduate school at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tennessee. Catherine is employed at the Hepatitis B Foundation in Philadelphia, PN. Jason graduated from the Citadel, Military College of South Carolina, and is in the training pipeline to become a combat controller for Air Force Special Operations.