About Me

I have been involved in the specialty of products liability, wrongful death, and commercial litigation for over 35 years, in both domestic and international cases. I am an engineer by undergraduate training, and engineering, materials science, mechanical design, and other areas of expertise not typically related to attorneys have always been an integral part of my practice.

I have represented families who have lost loved ones in tragic accidents including airplane crashes, electrocutions, swimming pool accidents, cruise ship accidents, vehicle crashes including rollovers and crashworthiness, marine hydraulic steering system failures, throttle linkage failures, failures of air traffic controllers, fuel feed system failures, CG and weight and balance errors, and other cases involving highly technical and highly specialized engineering fields.

I have handled cases against numerous domestic and foreign automobile manufacturers, aircraft manufacturers, medical equipment manufacturers, hospitals, hotels, resorts (such as Club Med), and manufacturers of all types of machinery and equipment.

Before entering the practice of law, I was an Air Force Captain and Flight Test Team Chief in various locations throughout the country. I flew test flights in the F-15 Eagle, the F-16 Falcon, the F-4 Phantom and other aircraft to test experimental air-to-air weapon systems and to determine the performance of the systems under certain extreme conditions, such as high Mach numbers, high altitude, and various combat maneuvers and scenarios.

Expertise

Significant Aviation Cases

Represented the families of loved ones killed or severely injured in the:

  • Arrow Air DC-8 crash in Gander, Newfoundland
  • TAN Sasha crash in Honduras
  • COPA 737 aircraft in Panama in route to Cali Columbia
  • The Payne Stewart case involving a Learjet 35-A crash in South Dakota
  • American Airlines Flight 587 crash of Airbus A-300 in Belle Harbor New York
  • U.S. Army National Guard crash of  a C-23B Sherpa in Georgia killing all on board

Numerous General Aviation cases involving manufacturers such as Cessna, Beechcraft, Piper, Grumman, as well as experimental aircraft.

Education and Accolades

  • University of Virginia (B.S. Mechanical Engineering with Emphasis on Aeronautical and  Biomedical Engineering 1974)
  • University of West Florida (MBA, 1980)
  • University of Florida (J.D., 1983)
  • The Florida Bar (1983)
  • Board Certified in Civil Trial (since 1993)
  • Board Certified in Aviation Law (since 1996)
  • The Washington D.C. Bar  
  • Lecturer on Aviation Law including International Treaties, the Warsaw Convention, General Aviation and Revitalization Act (GARA)
  • Current Chairman of the Aviation Certification Committee,The Florida Bar
  • Former Chairman of The Florida Bar Aviation and Space Law Committee
  • International Society of Air Safety Investigators (ISASI)
  • “AV” Rating from Martindale Hubbell for 30 years
  • The Florida Super Lawyers Top 5% (Since 2006)

 

My experience with this office was great, Patricia was always friendly, professional and always willing to answer any questions or concerns. Mel C. | Broward client | January 2018
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