ABOUT US

Our law firm is dedicated to representing families, survivors and others in lawsuits and other legal proceedings involving school violence, wrongful death, fraternity hazing, sexual assault and rape, Title IX, gun violence and other misconduct.  We have obtained tens and tens of millions of dollars in judgments and settlements on behalf of our clients.  Because our lawyers, firm and ethos is about more than money earned, we have obtained – without fee – hundreds of thousands of dollars for non-profit foundations and organizations committed to protecting students and families from violence, fraternity hazing, sexual assault, gun violence, rape and other misconduct in schools.  Attorney Laura Dunn founded SurvJustice, a national non-profit organization promoting justice for survivors of gender violence.

Our law firm remains the only nationwide legal team focusing on school violence for victims. We established the specialty, going so far as to create the first (and only) national school violence practice groups within the American Association for Justice and the National Crime Victim Bar Association.  As a result of her work and advocacy, attorney Laura Dunn was an invited participant to the White House ceremony presided over by President Barack Obama and Vice-President Joe Biden commemorating re-authorization of the Violence Against Women Act.  We obtain special permission to practice in any state where tragedy happens, locating and associating ourselves with qualified local trial counsel (two of whom have since become judges) to form a legal team with national expertise and local experience.  It is not just about money, though we have successfully obtained (and collected) tens and tens of millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for our clients, results and experience which we believe no other firm comes even close to matching. Parents and victims justly demand that comprehensive changes be imposed upon the national fraternities, fraternity chapters and schools that caused or failed to prevent their trauma.

We have sought and obtained enforceable concessions from defendants designed to make institutions (universities and fraternities) better managed and safer, allowing personal legacies to endure.  We have compelled universities to expel rapists, waive tuition and housing costs, implement academic accommodations and stay-away orders, revise victims’  grades and transcripts, comply with Title IX, state law, and university regulations, disclose risk information to the public, and, generally, act responsibly towards victims of great tragedies. We have forced fraternities to disclose their histories of hazing, sexual assault, rape and misconduct that have resulted in injuries and death.  We have created new legal precedent to aid victims nationwide, and we have assisted our clients obtain enactment of state legislation expanding victims’ rights.

We successfully negotiated the historic, complex settlement with the Commonwealth of Virginia and Virginia Tech University on behalf of 20 families/clients who suffered the loss of a loved one or traumatic gunshot injuries as a result of the April 2007 massacre at Virginia Tech.  John McCammon, founder of The McCammon Group and mediator of the settlement, described these accomplishments as “stellar.  You have served your clients so well and at the same time distinguished yourselves as first class, effective, efficient, practical and collaborative attorneys who know how to deal with the big issues.  While tough on substance, you were smooth on style.  That is a difficult combination to pull off.”  We continue to serve as legal counsel – pro bono – for the VTV Family Foundation, which was established as a result of our work.  Attorney Laura Dunn has served as legal counsel in landmark lawsuits involving Title IX.

Numerous other – equally important – examples of our work are set forth for your review on this site.

The search for qualified counsel is as difficult as it is important.  You should ask lawyers you interview for specific examples of the number and type of school cases they have handled, including the results obtained.  Have they been involved in the enactment of legislation and legal precedent protecting the rights of survivors and victims of school violence?  School, college and fraternity hazing, death and injury cases are often fundamentally different from claims involving medical malpractice, automobile accidents, slip and falls, and the other types of tort claims trial lawyers most often handle.  Ask them about their experience and ability to assist you in passage of victims’ rights legislation, should you have that concern.  We welcome the opportunity to be of assistance.  If we cannot assist you directly, we are happy to provide you with referrals to other lawyers around the country qualified to represent you on such matters.  All communications with our school violence team are confidential.