Derrick Smith co-chairs Mitchell Williams’ Regulated Business practice group. He is a member of the Firm’s Insurance Regulatory, Government Relations, and Energy & Utility practices where he represents clients in their interactions with Arkansas governmental entities and state insurance departments throughout the United States. Prior to joining Mitchell Williams, he served as a law clerk to the Honorable Olly Neal, Arkansas Court of Appeals, from 2000-2001.
Derrick’s experience spans the insurance industry. He draws upon both his understanding of business needs of companies in the industry and his knowledge of the regulatory environment to help clients meet their objectives. Derrick focuses his insurance regulatory practice on all legal matters related to strategic transactions including mergers, acquisitions, assumption reinsurance, and agreements with affiliated entities; licensing; market conduct investigations; and examinations; compliance; and product development and approvals. Derrick has negotiated resolutions of single-state and multistate market conduct examinations, and has obtained regulatory approvals of holding company act filings related to insurance company acquisitions in multiple jurisdictions throughout the country.
Derrick has experience securing certificates of authority for insurance companies and health maintenance organizations commencing operations for the first time and for those that are looking to expand. He also advises clients with regard to developments before the National Association of Insurance Commissioners and the National Association of Insurance Legislators.
In Arkansas, Derrick helps trade associations, insurance companies, public utilities, and other enterprises achieve their policy goals by drafting and advocating for and against legislation and agency rules and regulations. He regularly prepares and reviews campaign finance reports for political candidates, ballot question committees and political action committees. Derrick has drafted local option ballot questions that have withstood legal challenge. He has also successfully challenged and defended state procurement decisions.
Energy and Utility
Derrick represents gas utilities, electric cooperatives, and alternative energy suppliers in public utility regulatory matters before the Arkansas Public Service Commission and Arkansas State Courts.