Attorney - Donnell J. Collins


Donnell J. Collins
HBS Atlanta Office

P: 404-954-6963
F: 404-954-5020
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A Partner in the Atlanta Office and a native of Claxton, Georgia, Mr. Collins attended Morehouse College where he matriculated as a Presidential Scholar and was inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa Society following his junior year of study. Mr. Collins graduated from Morehouse in 1993 with the highest honors (summa cum laude). He entered law school that same year at the Emory University School of Law as a Merit Scholar.

While in law school, he gained considerable experience as an intern for Chief Justice Robert Benham of the Supreme Court of Georgia. After graduating from Emory in 1996, Mr. Collins launched his litigation career with the law firm of King & Spalding. In 1997, he joined the law firm of Zirkle and Hoffman where he continued his civil litigation practice. He also began an extensive insurance defense practice, specializing in the representation of self-insured employers, insurance companies, and third-party administrators in workers' compensation matters. Five years later, he became a Partner in the firm.

Since joining Hall Booth Smith in 2002, Mr. Collins' practice has also included the defense of health care professionals in medical malpractice cases and general liability claims. He respresents some of the most respected Fortune 100 companies. In 2006, he was appointed by Attorney General Thurbert Baker as a Special Assistant to the Attorney General to represent the State of Georgia in workers' compensation matters. He is an AV rated lawyer (lawyers rank him at the highest level of professional excellence) and was recognized as one of the state’s top lawyers in GeorgiaTrend Magazine’s 2012 Legal Elite publication and Atlanta Magazine's 2014 Top Lawyers of Georgia. 

For 2015, Mr. Collins was chosen as one of the Top 100 Black Lawyers in Business Labor and Employment Law. The National Black Lawyers Top 100 is an invitation-only professional honorary organization whose members exemplify superior qualifications of leadership, reputation, influence and performance in their area of legal practice.

This past year Mr. Collins celebrated 20 years of practicing law. He did so with the recognition as one of Georgia’s Top Rated Lawyers of 2016 and AV Preeminent attorneys.

Practice Areas


Mr. Collins' practice includes the defense and representation of educational institutions and school administrators.  He provides counsel on issues related to institutional policies and procedures, school safety and security, student rights and discipline, equity and discrimination, and records management.  Mr. Collins also represents professional educators in matters concerning their employment status, tenure and certification.


Mr. Collins is committed to helping employers avoid, resolve and prevail in employment disputes involving the full range of employment and labor issues. This includes litigation in state and federal courts and the representation of employers before administrative agencies over claims including: discrimination, harassment, retaliation, accommodation, and state torts such as negligent supervision and hiring, intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress, defamation, invasion of privacy, and wrongful discharge allegations.

Professional Negligence / Medical Malpractice

Mr. Collins has focused his practice in the defense of health care professionals. He represents nursing homes, living assisted facilities, nursing home administrators, directors, individual physicians, and nurses involving allegations of wrongful death, negligent care and treatment, and misdiagnosis.

Workers’ Compensation

Mr. Collins has served as counsel defending workers' compensation claims for nearly two decades. He also serves as a Special Assistant to the Attorney General, where he represents the State of Georgia in workers' compensation matters. He focuses on obtaining a swift and favorable resolution to claims, as well as representing his clients' long-term business interests.


Morehouse College, B.A. in Banking and Finance (summa cum laude), 1993

Phi Beta Kappa, 1992

Emory University School of Law, J.D., 1996


State of Georgia, 1996
State of Alabama, 2012
District of Columbia, 2016
Supreme Court of the State of Georgia, 1998
Court of Appeals of the State of Georgia, 1998
United States District Court Northern District of Georgia, 1998
United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, 1998


The Lawyers Club of Atlanta

Association of Trial Lawyers of America


Georgia's Top Rated Lawyers of 2016

AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell

The National Black Lawyers Top 100 -- 2015

Atlanta Magazine's 2014 Top Lawyers of Georgia

The American Lawyer & Corporate Counsel, Top Rated Lawyer 2014, Medical Malpractice Law

GeorgiaTrend Magazine's 2012 Legal Elite

Super Lawyers Rising Star 2009

National TRIO Achievers Award 1998