The firm has handled many cases over the years, a large
number of which have resulted in published decisions, a sampling of which
Johnson v. District of Columbia, et
al., 728 A.2d 70 (D.C. 1999): Affirms jury verdict in favor of defendant
hot water heater manufacturer in action involving a tap water scald injury
to minor child, upholding trial court's exclusion of plaintiff's expert witness
on basis of lack of qualification and background.
E.E.O.C. v. Catholic University of
America, 83 F.3d 455 (D.C. Cir., 1996), affirming 856 F.Supp.
1 (D.D.C. 1994): In a sex discrimination case, the E.E.O.C. and courts are
precluded by the First Amendment from interfering with a university's denial
of tenure to a professor of Canon Law.
Cheatle v. Cheatle, 662
A.2d 1362 (D.C. 1995): A finding of gross negligence causing death,
since it involves no intent to kill or harm, is insufficient as a matter
of law to cause a forfeiture of a beneficiary's right to inherit from the
deceased under common law.
Chesapeake and Ohio Railway Co. v.
Schwalb, 493 U.S. 40 (1989): Wrote the amicus curiae brief
on behalf of the railroad industry in this case which held that the federal
Longshore Act, not the Federal Employers' Liability Act, governed claims
by railroad workers injured while maintaining dockside coal-loading
Foshee v. Consolidated Rail
Corp., 849 F.2d 657 (D.C.Cir. 1988), affirming 661 F.Supp.
650 (D.D.C. 1987): A 13-year old child who suffered multiple amputations
was barred from recovery as a matter of law, for injuries sustained when
he came into contact with a moving train.
Best v. Howard University, 484
A.2d 958 (D.C. 1984) and 547 A.2d 144 (D.C. 1988): Commonly referred
to a Best I and Best II, these oft-cited decisions established
this jurisdiction's seminal interpretation of several employment law issues
involving Title VII, the Equal Pay Act, the District of Columbia Human Rights
Act, gender based discrimination and sexual harassment and employment contract
Edwards v. Consolidated Rail
Corp., 567 F.Supp. 1087 (1983), affirmed, 733 F.2d 966 (D.C.Cir.
1984), cert. denied, 469 U.S. 883 (1984): One of the lead cases in
the U.S. on injuries sustained by juvenile visitors on railroad property,
and non-applicability of the doctrine of "attractive nuisance."
Lunceford v. D.C. Board of
Education, 745 F.2d 1577 (D.C.Cir. 1984): The Hospital for Sick Children
of Washington, D.C., a private entity, is not a proper entity for suit under
the federal Education for All Children Act.
Washington Metropolitan Area Transit
Authority v. Jones, 443 A.2d 45 (D.C. en banc, 1982): The
leading District of Columbia decision on the doctrine of "last clear chance"
in automobile accident cases.
Potomac Electric Power Co. v. Director,
Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, etc., 449 U.S. 268 (1980):
Under the federal Longshore Act, an injured employee may not recover for
loss of earning capacity, but is limited to the amount specified for an injury
which is a "schedule loss" under the Act.
Mobley v. Southern Railway
Co., 418 A.2d 1044 (D.C. 1980): A lead case holding the doctrine
of forum non conveniens bars a railroad worker injured in Virginia
from filing a F.E.L.A. case in D.C., even though the railroad is headquartered
O'Hair v. Andrus, 613 F.2d
931 (D.C.Cir. 1979), injunction denied, 444 U.S. 890 (1979): A unique
case for its speed of resolution (three weeks from filing - to trial - to
a fully argued appeal - to final resolution by the U.S. Supreme Court) as
well its subject matter -- the successful defense of a suit brought by Madalyn
Murray O'Hair which sought to enjoin the defendants, the National Park Service
and Pope John Paul II, from celebrating the historic Papal Mass on the National
District of Columbia v. Potomac Electric
Power Co., 402 A.2d 430 (D.C. 1979): A specific money cap in a
Congressional Appropriation Act does not relieve the City government of its
obligation to pay the full amount of electrical charges approved by the Public
Brooks v. Washington Terminal
Co., 593 F.2d 1285 (D.C.Cir. 1979): Recovery under the F.E.L.A. by
a railroad foreman assaulted by a subordinate as revenge for being suspended
from duty is precluded under the F.E.L.A.
In re: Estate of French, 365
A.2d 621 (D.C. 1976), certiorari granted and affirmed with full court
decision sub nom. Key v. Doyle, 434 U.S. 59 (1977): The D.C. "Mortmain"
statute voiding bequests made to churches less than thirty days before death
is unconstitutional; a statute enacted by Congress applicable only to the
District of Columbia is not an "Act of Congress" for purposes of the Supreme
Court's appellate jurisdiction.
Potomac Electric Power Co. v. Westinghouse
Electric Co., 385 F.Supp. 572 (D.D.C. 1974), reversed 527
F.2d 853 (D.C.Cir. 1975): A case establishing the right of a purchaser to
recover consequential damages from a manufacturer resulting from a defective
turbine-generator, notwithstanding express limited warranties and a limitation
of liability in the sales contract.
Ford v. Lafayette Life Ins.
Co., 362 F.2d 970 (D.C.Cir. 1966): A case upholding the common-law
principle that a personal service contract terminates on the dissolution
of the partnership, thereby precluding a surviving partner from unilateral
enforcement of the contract.
Int'l Brotherhood of Electrical Workers
v. Washington Terminal Co., 473 F.2d 1156 (D.C.Cir. 1972), cert.
denied, 411 U.S. 906 (1973): A successful defense of the "incidental
work rule," resulting in one of the leading decisions analyzing the "major/minor
dispute" dichotomy under the Railway Labor Act.
And from our "Formative Years" - - - -
United States v. John Surratt - Represented by the founder of the firm, John Surratt was the only "Lincoln
Assassination Conspiracy" defendant who was not convicted.