Houghtaling is a nationally recognized attorney who is majority partner of New Orleans-based Gauthier Murphy & Houghtaling, LLC, the law firm credited with leading a class action lawsuit against Big Tobacco that led to a record $286 billion settlement.
Houghtaling filed the nation’s first lawsuits seeking a court opinion on COVID-19 business interruption claims for a restaurant group in New Orleans, La, and for America's most celebrated Chef Thomas Keller. He also represents the interests of famed Celebrity Chefs Daniel Boulud, Wolfgang Puck and Jerome Bocuse. Together John Houghtaling, Thomas Keller, Wolfgang Puck, Daniel Boulud, Jerome Bocuse and the James Beard Foundation lead a non profit BIG, Business Interruption Group, formed after the outbreak of the coronavirus, to urge the federal government to assist the insurers that properly pay business interruption claims to save the restaurant industry, the largest private sector employer, that employs 15.6 million people and contributed 1 trillion dollars to the US economy.
Houghtaling has been at the forefront of national first party litigation for two decades. Houghtaling was selected by Louisiana’s Attorney General to determine policyholder rights in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. His representation of more than 1,000 storm victims in Superstorm Sandy uncovered a national scandal in which top FEMA Executives admitted that companies forged engineering reports to deny coverage to storm victims. Houghtaling's litigation and coordination with the Attorney General of New York exposed the fraud and led to the arrest of an insurance executive, federal fines against an insurer, and hundreds of millions of dollars being recovered by storm victims. Houghtaling's insurance work was the subject of a CBS 60 Minutes special, Frontline Documentary, CBS Evening News profile, and led to the founding of a national non-profit, The American Policyholders Association.