Carol Ann Smith

Carol Ann Smith: Attorney with Smith & Bahakel, P.C. AV stamp icon
  • Founding Partner at Smith & Bahakel, P.C. (6 Attorneys)
  • 2000-A SouthBridge Parkway, Suite 405, Birmingham, AL 35209-7720
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Attorney Awards


Carol Ann Smith has practiced law in Alabama for more than 40 years, over time focusing on defense of complex, high-exposure litigation. She has represented businesses, both large and small, in a wide range of matters in state and federal courts across Alabama. She often represents insurance carriers and policyholders in matters involving coverage and bad faith.

Carol Ann graduated magna cum laude from Birmingham-Southern College in 1971. She received her law degree from the University of Alabama in 1975, after which she clerked for the Honorable Justice James N. Bloodworth of the Alabama Supreme Court. She earned her LLM from New York University (NYU) and began practicing law in Birmingham, Alabama in 1977.

Carol Ann was one of the earliest, if not the first, woman lawyers trying civil personal injury cases to the jury in state and federal courts in Birmingham and other venues across the state. Early trial court wins, resulting in defense jury verdicts, in her first five years of practice included wins for L&N Railroad and Sears.

Carol Ann has served on many state and local bar committees since the early 1980s. She proudly served as the first female President of the Birmingham Bar Association (1997). She has also served as President of the Alabama Defense Lawyers Association (1997) and the Birmingham Bar Foundation (1999-2000). Other highlights include her appointment to the Alabama Pattern Jury Instructions Committee (2003-2009) and chairing the Alabama State Bar Task Force on Bench-Bar Relations (2000-2001).

In 2010, Carol Ann was awarded the prestigious Nina Miglionico “Paving the Way” Leadership Award. Named in honor of the noted Birmingham advocate for social justice (and one of the first women to work as a lawyer in Alabama), this award recognizes lawyers who have actively paved the way to success and advancement for women lawyers.

Among other awards, Carol Ann has been recognized by the Birmingham Business Journal as among the “Top Ten Women in Birmingham” (1997) and the “Best Lawyers in Birmingham” (2008). She has been selected as among Alabama’s Super Lawyers (2008-present). She is rated AV Preeminent® by Martindale-Hubbell®.

Carol Ann enjoys mentoring younger lawyers and law clerks. The firm makes full use of aspiring talented law students from nearby Cumberland School of Law (Samford University) and the University of Alabama School of Law. Past law clerks have moved on to distinguished service with state and federal judges across Alabama, including Alabama Supreme Court Justices.

Outside the office, Carol Ann enjoys spending time at her farm with her horses. She serves on the Board of Directors for Opera Birmingham. In her spare time, she is an avid reader of history and biographies.

American Bar Foundation; Alabama State Bar Task Force on Bench-Bar Relations (Chair, 2000-2001); Alabama Supreme Court Alabama Pattern Jury Instructions Committee, 2003-2009; Alabama State Bar Diversity Task Force; Fellow, Alabama Law Foundation; Alabama Defense Lawyers Association (President, 1997; Secretary-Treasurer, 1996; Board of Directors, 1988); Defense Research Institute. Recipient: Top Ten Women in Birmingham, Birmingham Business Journal, 1997; Walter P. Gewin Award for Outstanding Service to the Alabama Bench and Bar in Continuing Legal Education, 1998; Birmingham Southern College Distinguished Alumna, 2002; Alabama Bar Institute for Continuing Legal Education's highest award; Business Alabama Magazine, Super Lawyers section, Top Attorneys in Alabama, 2008; Birmingham Business Journal, Best Lawyers in Birmingham, 2008; Super Lawyers Top 25 Women Lawyers, 2008 and 2009.

Areas of Practice (18)

  • Insurance Defense
  • Insurance Bad Faith
  • Trucking Liability
  • Construction Accidents
  • Construction Defects
  • Insurance Coverage
  • Automobile Negligence
  • Business Torts
  • Personal Injury
  • Products Liability
  • Premises Liability
  • Employment Law
  • Appellate Practice
  • Wrongful Death
  • Catastrophic Injury
  • Indemnity
  • Noncompete Litigation
  • Property Damage

Education & Credentials

Contact Information:
205-802-2214  Phone
205-879-4445  Fax
University Attended:
Birmingham-Southern College, B.A., magna cum laude, 1971
Law School Attended:
University of Alabama, J.D., 1975; New York University, LL.M., 1977
Year of First Admission:
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Alabama; U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit; U.S. District Court, Middle District of Alabama; U.S. District Court, Southern District of Alabama; 1975, Alabama; U.S. Supreme Court

Alabama State Bar

Birmingham Bar Association

Birmingham Inns of Court

Alabama Defense Lawyers Association

Defense Research Institute

American Bar Association

Alabama Law Institute

American Bar Foundation

Birmingham Bar Foundation

Reported Cases:
Travelers Home & Marine Ins. Co. v. Gray, 171 So. 3d 3 (Ala. 2014).

Cooper v. Southwest Marine & General Ins. Co., 2014 WL 769394 (N.D. Ala. 2014).

American Family Life Assurance Co. of Columbus v. Parker, 92 So. 3d 58 (Ala. 2012).

W.G. Yates & Sons Const. Co. v. Zurich Am. Ins. Co., 2008 WL 161921 (S.D. Ala. 2008).

Philpot v. U.S. Fire Ins. Co., 236 F. App’x 575 (11th Cir. 2007).

Lloyd Noland Foundation, Inc. v. Tenet Health Care Corp., 483 F.3d 773 (11th Cir. 2007).

Canal Ins. Co. v. U.S. Fire Ins. Co., 216 F. App’x 917 (11th Cir. 2007).

Ash v. Tyson Foods, Inc., 190 F. App’x 924 (11th Cir. 2006).

FabArc Steel Supply, Inc. v. Composite Const. Systems, Inc., 914 So. 2d 344 (Ala. 2005).

Star Elec. Contractors, Inc. v. Stone Bldg. Co., Inc., 863 So. 2d 1071 (Ala. 2003).

Federal Ins. Co. v. Traveler’s Cas. & Sur. Co., 310 F.3d 707 (11th Cir. 2002).

Federal Ins. Co. v. Travelers Cas. And Sur. Co., 843 So. 2d 140 (Ala. 2002).

Birmingham Hockey Club, Inc. v. National Council on Compensation Ins., Inc., 827 So. 2d 73 (Ala. 2002).

Aetna Cas. & Sur. Co. v. Mitchell Bros., Inc., 814 So. 2d 191 (Ala. 2001).

Butero v. Royal Maccabees Life Ins. Co., 174 F.3d 1207 (11th Cir. 1999).

Calhoun v. Pennsylvania Nat. Mut. Cas. Ins. Co., 676 So. 2d 1332 (Ala. Civ. App. 1996).

Garikes, Wilson, and Atkinson, Inc. v. Episcopal Foundation of Jefferson County, Inc., 614 So. 2d 447 (Ala. 1993).

Harris v. Birmingham Hide and Tallow Co., Inc., 589 So. 2d 150 (Ala. 1991).

Wozny v. Godsil, 474 So. 2d 1078 (Ala. 1985). Waites v. Toran, 411 So. 2d 127 (Ala. 1982). Daughtry v. W. Railway of Alabama, 341 So. 2d 702 (Ala. 1977).

Peer Reviews

  • 5.0/5.0
  • A Martindale-Hubbell Peer Rating reflects a combination of achieving a Very High General Ethical Standards rating and a Legal Ability numerical rating.

*Peer Reviews provided before April 15, 2008 are not displayed.

Birmingham, Alabama

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