Explore Our Capabilities

Tort Defense


Lawsuits concerning wrongful death, bodily injury and property damage claims can arise in virtually any industry or product line. Parker Poe works closely with our clients to provide liability advice and preventative counseling and, in the event of an accident, to bring cases to resolution through trial or negotiation. Our attorneys have extensive experience dealing with the unique challenges presented by catastrophic claims and mass tort litigation.

Representative Experience

  • Litigation – We represent clients in both state and federal courts in North Carolina, South Carolina and other states, in claims involving wrongful death, bodily injury, property damage, business interruption and other economic losses. Our litigation experience includes multi-district and mass tort litigation as well as class action defense.
  • Advice and Counseling – We advise clients on risk avoidance and safety issues as well as accident response and investigation immediately following an accident. Preventative measures include advising clients of potential liability issues and compliance with regulatory requirements such as OHSA. In the event of an incident, we partner with clients to prepare and implement protocols. We also counsel clients on the difficult issue of media relations as well as evidence and document retention policies.
  • Appeals – We represent clients in appeals in state appellate courts, the United States Courts of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court.
  • Defended the owner of a pedestrian walkway at a sports venue which collapsed resulting in serious injuries to more than 100 people
  • Represented manufacturers of prescription drugs, defending personal injury claims in state and federal courts in North Carolina and South Carolina and in multi-district litigation
  • Defended a manufacturer of industrial machinery in litigation arising from an explosion at a plant in Kinston, North Carolina, which caused six deaths, numerous personal injuries and completely destroyed the plant
  • Defended manufacturers of medical devices and products such as hip prostheses, surgical staplers, sutures and latex gloves in state and federal courts in North Carolina and South Carolina and in multi-district litigation
  • Represented an insurer of numerous poultry producers sued as a result of allegations of groundwater contamination resulting in hundreds of lawsuits for wrongful death, personal injury and water supply contamination in Oklahoma, Arkansas and Mississippi
  • Represented the ownership entity for the Hamlet/Imperial Foods chicken processing plant in litigation arising from a fire which resulted in the death of 90 individuals
  • Defended the manufacturer of polyurethane foam in the San Juan (Puerto Rico) Dupont Plaza Hotel fire litigation, which produced thousands of claims and involved the deaths of 99 individuals
  • Defended a manufacturer whose facilities used asbestos-containing materials in construction and in certain equipment, who was sued by contractors who worked in the facilities and claimed to suffer from asbestos-related diseases
  • Defended electric utilities in claims involving electrocution, electric shock, burn injuries, stray voltage and fire damage
  • Represented a waste management company, defending wrongful death and bodily injury claims resulting from accidents involving trucks and other large vehicles
  • Represented the owner of a sporting venue where three individuals were killed and others were injured when debris flew into the stands during an event
  • Defended the owner of a plant in which a pit furnace exploded, killing an employee.
  • Defended a manufacturing facility where a large chemical tank exploded, killing two independent contractor employees and injuring a third
  • Represented a major public utility sued by the estate of a worker who was killed when performing underwater maintenance on one of the utility's hydroelectric dams
  • Represented the owner of a landfill where a worker was killed in a collision involving a garbage truck
  • Defended trucking and transportation companies, defending wrongful death and bodily injury claims resulting from motor vehicle accidents
  • Represented an electrical cooperative company, defending a serious bodily injury claim resulting from an accident that occurred while workers were erecting utility poles
  • Obtained a defense verdict in alleged wrongful death case involving a pedestrian who was hit by a truck while crossing a street in Stantonsburg, NC. Defendant driver was heavily involved in community activities in adjacent county. We were able to convince a jury that the accident was solely the fault of the pedestrian. Emotionally, it was important that the jury returned a verdict absolving our client of negligence, rather than simply finding that Plaintiff’s decedent was contributorily negligent.
  • Successful Defeat of Proximate Cause Argument in Case Involving Two Back Surgeries. Auto case where our client admitted fault. The Plaintiff claimed a herniated disc in his lower back, requiring two surgeries to repair. We successfully overcame testimony of two surgeons who related the back injury to the accident. Jury returned a defense verdict, awarding Plaintiff nothing.
  • Successful Defeat of Proximate Cause Argument in Case Involving Overturned Vehicle, Herniated Disk and Fibromyalgia. Auto case where our client admitted fault. The Plaintiff, a former court room clerk, claimed to be totally disabled as a result of multiple injuries, including a herniated disk and fibromyalgia. We were able to successfully cross examine her expert physicians and ultimately the jury returned a verdict paying Plaintiff only for emergency department bills of less than $2,000.
  • Successful Defeat of Proximate Cause Argument in High Impact Collision Case. Auto case where our client admitted fault. The Plaintiff claimed aggravation of old back and neck injuries as the result of a high speed collision. She needed surgery but Plaintiff was between jobs and couldn’t afford it. Now totally disabled. Using minimal information gleaned from old medical records, we successfully cross examined Plaintiff’s expert physicians and overcame the testimony of Plaintiff’s economist. Jury did not award the Plaintiff any damages.
  • Successful Defense of Gross Contributory Negligence in High Speed Road Rage Case. We overcame a very skilled Plaintiff’s attorney and a well-organized presentation of evidence to obtain a defense verdict for a corporate defendant and its driver, after a five day trial. The Plaintiff presented testimony from accident reconstruction experts as well as pharmacy experts to attempt to demonstrate the state of mind of our client, a heavy prescription drug user, and his actions leading to the accident. We were able to turn the accident reconstruction evidence in our favor, and through cross exam of the Plaintiff, demonstrated his lack of credibility. Plaintiff suffered multiple fractures. The jury found that, although our client was grossly negligent (which we admitted), the Plaintiff was nonetheless barred by his gross contributory negligence.
  • Successful Defeat of Proximate Cause Argument in Rotator Cuff Surgery Case. Auto case where our client admitted fault. Plaintiff claimed an injury to her rotator cuff and claimed it required two surgeries to repair. We successfully used prior medical records to undercut her claims that the accident was responsible for her injury, and we were able to overcome a plaintiff-friendly treating orthopedist, to convince the jury to find against the Plaintiff. The jury awarded the Plaintiff nothing.
  • Successful Defeat of Proximate Cause Argument in High Impact Collision Case Where Plaintiff Claimed Compression Fractures and Six-Level Fusion Surgery to Her Thoracic Spine. Auto case where our client admitted fault. We utilized expert testimony from an independent Neurosurgeon and a Radiologist to successfully refute Plaintiff’s claims that she suffered multiple compression fractures to her spine, which she and her treating surgeon claimed to have led to six-level fusion surgery to treat her resulting chronic back pain. The jury ultimately accepted our evidence that there were no fractures, and that the surgery was unnecessary. They awarded the Plaintiff only $400 after a week-long trial.
  • Successful Defeat of Proximate Cause Argument in High Impact Collision Case. Auto case where our client admitted fault. The elderly plaintiff claimed a fractured thumb and aggravation of long standing degenerative changes in neck as a result of the accident. He had extensive past medical bills. We were able to effectively cross examine his treating physician to refute his claims. The jury found against the Plaintiff and awarded him nothing.
  • Successful Defense of Insurance Carrier in Head-on Collision Case Involving Lost Tobacco Profits. This was an uninsured motorist case, where we overcame the lack of a human defendant and used extensive, feet on the ground research into the tobacco warehousing and brokerage business to refute Plaintiff’s claims for nearly $3 million in lost income as a result of serious injuries he suffered in a head on collision on Interstate 95. The accident rendered him totally disabled. In spite of the testimony from an expert economist and evidence of lost contracts, we were able to defeat Plaintiff’s claims for lost income, and the jury ultimately awarded him less than our client had offered two years before the case went to trial. 

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