Powell Law Group - Personal Injury and Workers' Compensation Attorney In Richmond, VA

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Product Liability Lawsuit: $850,000
Personal Injury | Powell Law Group | Wins 850000

Carmen was a long-time employee in a wood processing plant in Hanover, VA where she worked around sophisticated food processing machines manufactured by Eagle Manufacturing and controlled by Time Savers, an electric control company. Her job was to unblock the wood that would jam when it processed through a sawing and finishing machine. At her job station, there were no guardrails or kill switches to shut down the machines in the event that one of her garments became stuck in the multiple roller conveyor belts where the woods were processed through.

On October 19, 2015, when a jam occurred, she had to move around the large conveyor belt roller machine in order to unjam some wood that was near the finisher machine. As she reached out to unjam, her sweatshirt became caught in rollers, pulling her in, the right side of her body, and her arm into the machine causing serious injury to her arm, shoulder, and facial lacerations and scars. The industrial accident almost severed her arm. 

Fortunately, with prompt emergency services and extensive rehabilitation, her arm was saved. She remained however, with permanent disability of her right arm and the case became both a workers’ compensation and a product liability matter. The basis for the product liability lawsuit laid on the fact that there should have been protocols installed to ensure the safety of the worker using these machines. Such protocols ranged from increased guards or guard rails around the conveyor belt machine, added controls for stopping the machine in an emergency when the worker would have to walk around or lean in to unjam it, or an electric beam could have been placed to shut off immediately when a human body part was detected. In this situation, the employer placed productivity of the line to keep moving and processing wood as a higher priority. 

The companies were served in a timely manner after resolving the workers’ compensation case and neither answered the lawsuit. Subsequently, the Powell Law Group obtained a judgement for both companies in the Richmond City Circuit Court and the judge awarded $850,000 with interest dating from the date of the accident. Additionally, a judgement was also obtained in Ohio, where Eagle Manufacturing is headquartered. The Powell Law Group is currently seeking to collect on this judgement for their client. 




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Our attorneys persistently pursue maximum compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.

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 804-794-4030 or contact us online



From Car Accident Victim To Inspired Career Path
Personal Injury Paralegal Internship | Carl Succeeds | Powell Law Group.JPG

Meet Carl. He grew up in Detroit and is a single dad to a gorgeous and bright daughter.

Involved in a massive car accident, which took him years to recuperate from, he found life inspiration through his personal healing. Once he got better, Carl decided to go back to school as a path to find a desk job that could support his family. He chose to attend Strayer University and studied to become a Paralegal. Carl wants help people who find themselves in less than optimal life scenarios.

During his senior year, the school aligned internships for their students to gain valuable experience in their fields. Having been through the process of injury and restarting his life anew, an internship with a Personal Injury law firm made a lot of sense.

Carl came to Powell Law Group where he interned as a paralegal and practiced what he had learned in the classroom. He recently reached out to thank us for our support and shared this graduation picture. We are proud of Carl’s accomplishment and wish him the very best in his career!


If you or someone you love has been injured on the job or in an accident, please reach out to us. We provide free case reviews and decades of experience to get you what you deserve.

PERSONAL INJURY | WORKERS’ COMPENSATION | CONTACT US

New Office In Arlington, Virginia

Powell Law Group announces the opening of our satellite office in Arlington, Virginia.

Located at 4250 Fairfax Drive, 22203, we look forward to further supporting our clients in Northern Virginia and Washington D.C. With a metro stop located outside the building, clients will have easy access by train from points in Maryland, Washington D.C. and Virginia, and will not have to worry about navigating the complicated streets of D.C.  

Over the past three decades, Powell Law Group has provided representation to clients with catastrophic injuries all over the Commonwealth of Virginia and in Washington D.C.  Opening an office in Northern Virginia offers a convenient location to meet with clients from that area of the state, as well as extend our reach to new clients with diverse backgrounds dealing with injuries from catastrophic accidents of all types (car accidents, motorcycle accidents, small and large machinery accidents, etc.). The Powell Law Group specializes in helping multi-cultural clients needing bi-lingual services, Spanish/English and French/ English. 

As always, the Powell Law Group is available to clients, existing and potential clients, 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling our office number, (804) 794.4030.  No matter where you live in Virginia, we can attend to your legal needs within the areas of our practice concentrations, namely personal injury cases, workers comp cases, and criminal and traffic cases. (Please note our firm only handles the criminal and traffic cases in the Richmond Metropolitan area.)  

TED Talk Tuesday: "The Revolutionary Power of Diverse Thought" by Elif Shafak

In this TED Talk Tuesday piece, we explore the complexity of our current times. Elif Shafak, a writer blending East and West, feminism and traditional, shares her perspective of today’s trend toward tribalism that pulls us apart and her hope for humanity’s ability to move towards multiplicity as the antidote and nuance as the connector.

Noting her multicultural, multinational, complex experience self, Shafak shares her appreciation of storytelling and individual human rights, much like Wayne Powell. A white man born and raised in the south can quickly get a label and tossed into a tribe before opening their mouth. The same way a black man can be labeled as he walks across the street at night or a Latino-looking woman getting out of her car with many children might begin a story in one’s mind that assumes something about them. Sadly, research today shows social media drives tribalism and this “clash between two certainties” that Shafak speaks of is highlighted. She points out how we are being denied the right to be complex. And complex the Powell Law Group knows the world is.

Wayne learned from his heritage, both good and bad, and crafted his future to treasure the nuance. His education steeped in learning multiple languages to better understand others, rooted in belief for our country, as well as helping other countries, and a burning passion to help the “common man” when life is at its most bleak, it’s the unique story of each client that keeps Wayne passionate about his legal practice of almost 40 years.

So from populist demagogues, we will learn the indispensability of democracy. And from isolationists, we will learn the need for global solidarity. And from tribalists, we will learn the beauty of cosmopolitanism and the beauty of diversity.
— Elif Shafak
 
 

Above we give you a glimpse of Elik Shafak’s literary works. They are all available on Amazon and worth checking out, if you enjoyed her TED Talk like we did.

Also, if you or a loved one face a dark time due to an injury, you don’t have to feel alone no matter if your far from your “motherland” or in the same town you were born. From traumatic brain injuries to back problems and mental health, Powell Law Group understands the “what happened to you” for each client is going to be different and range from simple to complex, but we go into every case with the same goal: Make sure our clients are getting the best medical care possible and receive maximum compensation to live the best life possible for their unique personal situation. Case reviews are free and our experience in helping people find justice is vast.

5 Trial Tips I Learned from my Years as a Deputy Commissioner at the Virginia Workers' Compensation Commission
Wayne Powell

Wayne Powell

I spent from March 1985 until March of 1991 as a Deputy Commissioner of the Virginia Workers Compensation Commission (VWCC).  I was selected for this judicial post by the three commissioners of the VWCC who were elected by the legislature of Virginia. I left the Commission in 1991 to pursue opportunities in the private sector.  

1. Objectivity

Before my appointment to the VWCC, I had been practicing for approximately five years, three years of which as an Assistant Attorney General. During that time, I was fortunate to learn from a series of challenging trials in state and federal courts.  As an advocate for state defendants, I would become so focused on my clients’ side of the case, that I would fail to adequately consider for the weaknesses that created in my own case. This affected my perspective on the case which sometimes created obstacles for me at trial. As a Deputy Commissioner, I was required to approach every worker’s compensation case objectively without any sort of bias. I had to remain open to consider the evidence from both sides of every claim. This included weighing the evidence and considering the credibility of the testimony as well as the arguments of opposing lawyers in order to give a fair hearing to the litigants. During my time as a Deputy Commissioner, I attended the National Judicial College in Nevada where I took courses to further develop my skills in areas such as judicial writing. This helped me better express my objective reasoning in deciding cases. By opening my mind to both the claimant and defense perspectives, the cases were much easier to resolve. It also became easier to evaluate all the documentation submitted as evidence in each case as well as the oral testimony. I would say that applying objectivity as a judge for six years is a skill that I have carried from the VWCC.  In fact, in my subsequent practice as a defense lawyer and as a plaintiff lawyer, it was easier to place myself in the position of either party in order to better my case. Objectivity is a valuable asset for any trial lawyer in order to more adequately represent his or her client.

2. Thoroughness

During my five years of trial experience before beginning work as a Deputy Commissioner at the VWCC, I had several paralegals and secretaries assigned to assist me in preparing for depositions, motions practice, and trial. At the Commission I had one secretary and was also assigned a bailiff to drive to jurisdictions. and I was expected to issue my opinion where I presided in my circuit within eight weeks of the hearing date. On average, I presided over cases for several days in different jurisdictions, so there was a limited time within which to prepare and formulate my opinion. My territory spanned from Richmond, Fredericksburg, Winchester, on to Harrisburg, Staunton, Charlottesville, and sometimes to Clifton Forge. Essentially, I was on the bench 11 days of a 20-workday month. This required that I needed to be very thorough in how I ruled on evidentiary issues at the hearings, and I needed to be thorough in reviewing all the records submitted by both sides. After a hearing, I would have to review the medical reports submitted by both sides in the hearing and I would have to consider opinions rendered by the opposing doctors and healthcare practitioners as well as the doctor’s treatment notes taken in the emergency room.

I developed a technique to preserve the significant evidence presented at the hearings. While everything that I had heard was fresh I dictated a summary of the evidence presented at the hearing and some of the conclusions that were reached. This included a summary of the medical documents cited in the hearing as well as a summary of the various testimonies of the witnesses. If the issue was straightforward and easily resolvable by this summary, then I'd sometimes sketch my findings, but they were always subject to my review. If the cases were complex, I would review a typed transcript of the testimony that I "recalled" after the hearing. In the late 1980s and early 1990s when I served at the Commission, it was not routine to request a transcript of the hearing, although all hearings were on the record. So, requesting a transcript was unusual, hence the taking of thorough and copious notes was essential as a Deputy Commissioner. 

3. Respect

Since I began practicing law in 1980, I have consistently felt that respecting your opponents, their counsel, and the presiding judicial officer, as well as the process itself, was essential to obtain justice. My experience at the VWCC confirmed my belief in the basic need for respect for the process, the rule of law, and the judicial system. As a Deputy Commissioner, regardless of how a lawyer acted, I never engaged in emotional exchanges with lawyers, parties, or witnesses, or in any other behavior which might express my dissatisfaction in the conduct of a lawyer or witness. I maintained a calm and professional demeanor, regardless of what my ruling might be for any particular motion or for any litigant while in court. In a trial context, there is a certain solemnity and a natural tendency for restraint and respect. However, in my experience, as a judge, one realizes that both sides are looking at the person who is supposed to be making independent judgments based on the facts and evidence without emotion in the case. That respect for not only the litigants, their representatives, and the process, is something that has reinforced my prior belief and has helped me maintain a high level of dedication to the rule of law and the respect that I have for other lawyers. With few exceptions, I found the respect to be reciprocal. 

4. Professionalism

Professionalism is the foundation of any career. My prior experience as a military officer before going to law school prepared me for the type of conduct which I felt was appropriate in my legal career; this was further buttressed by my experience as a judicial officer. The professionalism of a judge has to permeate the court and the location where the hearing is held. The judge must establish that atmosphere of professionalism that inspires not only fellow deputy judges to act professionally themselves, but the attorneys, parties, and the witnesses.  This is based on the solemnity of the occasion when parties are in court, and the way in which the litigants are expected to act when they are present. In the now 38 years I have been practicing, I have noticed in recent years a lack of professionalism on the part of some of the younger members of the bar. Perhaps my view of this is the result of my own experience in the military. Regardless of the reason, my experience led me to conclude that professionalism is essential to exhibit not only to the judge when you're in court, but the lawyers, witnesses, and other litigants when you're out of court as well. It has often been said that a person’s ethics can be judged by how one conducts himself when no one is looking. I've always remembered that adage, and I've always tried to act that way whether I was in court or simply on a telephone call with an opposing counsel. Professionalism will permit a more objective consideration of all the evidence adduced at the hearing over which I presided. 

It is essential that all participants show themselves to be professional at all times in the litigation process. 

5. Curiosity and Creativity

Creativity is closely aligned with curiosity. In my profession, one has to be curious about the law and take a creative approach to obtain justice. Curiosity and creativity are essential to properly consider how the facts lend themselves to interpretation by certain precedent, and how they fit into a legal context.  One of the things that I was always fascinated by as a Deputy Commissioner was the fact that every case that you thought had a certain fact pattern which would fit in a certain case precedent, did not always fit in that precedent.  In fact, there are always unique aspects of every case -- either by medical report, or by a factual anomaly that would make the case not fit into one category, but perhaps fit in another category.  In order to determine which category a case would fall into, it would take research skills, and it would take thinking of or defining the issues such that you could look up other precedents, which might change the way you viewed a certain case or a certain fact pattern.  Because of curiosity and the creativity that comes with it, frequently when I was faced with a certain fact pattern that appeared to fall into a certain category of cases, but by the time I considered all the facts, medical records, and the law, I came up with a different decision than I started out with.  This frequently happens in appellate cases as well. I participated by designation in a few appeals at the WCC when a Commissioner was unavailable, and I have been in various continuing legal education seminars in which the appellate judges frequently will talk about how a case comes in and appears to fall into a certain category, but after due consideration, the disposition of the case changes. I also have found that in the many appeals I’ve filed anticipation of adverse ruling have helped preserve unlikely issues at final that we effective in everything adverse rulings below on appeal. 

Curiosity and creativity apply in active practice. I have engaged in cases which other lawyers have refused to take on. In one case, I received more than $1M in settlement brought about by an inexplicable exploding multi-part wheel of a commercial vehicle. My curiosity led me to research multi-part wheels developed for commercial vehicles. The average driver is only familiar with the one-piece wheels on their vehicle. As it turned out in that case, not only did I find out that there were multi-part wheels still in the market from the early 20th century, but I was able to find a lawyer who won a settlement when an identical wheel exploded in a similar accident in Tennessee.  He gave me the name of the experts I needed in order to develop a large liability case while representing my brain-injured client in the claim related to the defective multi-part wheel which exploded under high pressure.  In that case, curiosity was a very valuable asset, to the client and his family, but also to my legal expertise and my firm. I opened a new specialty area in my current firm and I continue to win cases such as these based on the skills that I have developed from years of applying curiosity and creativity to problems or obstacles that come up in cases.  

Personal Injury: $2,800,000

In 2015, attorney Wayne Powell was the trial lawyer for a tragic case where a tractor trailer collided with a private automobile resulted in the tragic death of a Virginia resident and large car pile up with multiple injuries. The accident occurred close to a construction area where the careless truck driver failed to apply brakes and yield to traffic that had the right of way.  Ultimately, the truck driver did not move over to another lane in sufficient time to avoid the collision with the client and other cars on an interstate highway.

NEGLIGENCE INJURIES | AUTO INJURIES | TRUCK INJURIES | PREMISES INJURIES | PRODUCT INJURIES 



CONTACT US TODAY

Our attorneys persistently pursue maximum compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Call today to arrange your FREE initial consultation.

 804-794-4030 or contact us online

Personal Injury: $2,550,000
Personal Injury | Toxic Fumes

In 2012, attorney Wayne Powell successfully settled a group of personal injury cases for $2,500,000. These cases for several clients who were office workers exposed to the inhalation of toxic fumes which infiltrated below a roof replacement site above their offices.  The inhalation caused various degrees of brain damage in six employees of the business where the roof replacement was taking place.  

NEGLIGENCE INJURIES | AUTO INJURIES | TRUCK INJURIES | PREMISES INJURIES | PRODUCT INJURIES



CONTACT US TODAY

Our attorneys persistently pursue maximum compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Call today to arrange your FREE initial consultation.

 804-794-4030 or contact us online

Personal Injury: $4,500,000
Personal Injury | Gang Attack

In 2009, attorney Wayne Powell successfully tried a negligence case in the Federal District Court for the District of Columbia in conjunction with attorney Patrick Regan.  They were successful in receiving a jury verdict in favor of the client, a patron of a Washington night club.  The plaintiff suffered brain damaged after he was assaulted by a criminal gang outside a club in Washington, DC while there was no security stationed outside to protect the patron as he was leaving. The jury verdict awarded the plaintiff $4,500,000.

Significance:  As in Virginia, Washington, DC, does not normally allow a cause of action against a premises owner for injury received by a patron outside of the premises.  In this case, the evidence showed that the club and premises owner normally had security stationed outside of the club since there was a high level of criminal activity outside of the club. The Court allowed evidence of this lack of security on the night of the attack in the context of criminal activity in the neighborhood of the club.   Prior to the assault on the client, there was routinely security offered by the club, both inside and outside the club, to prevent criminal activity from affecting the patrons.

NEGLIGENCE INJURIES | AUTO INJURIES | TRUCK INJURIES | PREMISES INJURIES | PRODUCT INJURIES



CONTACT US TODAY

Our attorneys persistently pursue maximum compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Call today to arrange your FREE initial consultation.

 804-794-4030 or contact us online

Personal Injury: $1,000,000
Personal Injury | Brain Injury |

In 2006 attorney Wayne Powell successfully resolved a personal injury claim which had begun after a worker's compensation claim that arose from the plaintiff’s catastrophic brain injury which occurred at work. The case was rare in Virginia, since it arose as the result of an exploding multi-piece commercial wheel rim system designed and marketed by a major international manufacturer.   The client was changing the commercial tire when the three piece rim system exploded, causing serious brain damage,  removing part of his skull and brain, leaving him irreversibly brain damaged.  [NOTE:  The client, who was single, died before the settlement was distributed, so travel overseas was necessary to distribute the settlement funds to the client’s parents and siblings in accordance with Virginia law.]

SIGNIFICANCE:   This was one of the first cases in Virginia which resulted from the widespread manufacture of multi-piece wheel rim systems by several American and international manufacturers, which had previously resulted in successful multi-district litigation against the manufacturers. The personal injury claim was settled for $1,000,000.

NEGLIGENCE INJURIES | AUTO INJURIES | TRUCK INJURIES | PREMISES INJURIES | PRODUCT INJURIES



CONTACT US TODAY

Our attorneys persistently pursue maximum compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Call today to arrange your FREE initial consultation.

 804-794-4030 or contact us online

Personal Injury Case: $200,000
Personal Injury | Murder

In 2004 attorney Wayne Powell successfully resolved a personal injury case in which our client was killed by a bounty hunter, contracted by a bonding company, which had hired him to retrieve a fugitive who had not returned to court when ordered.  The plaintiff’s decedent was falsely identified by the bounty hunter, who shot him in cold blood.  The case was brought against the bonding company for negligent hiring.  The murdered man left a widow and six children without a husband and father.

SIGNIFICANCE:  The case settled with the bonding insurer, but if it had been tried, this would have been  a case of first impression in which a bonding company might have been forced to pay a judgment to a family because of a criminal act of a third party actor.   [NOTE:  Shortly after the settlement, new statutory requirements of bounty hunter licensing in Virginia which had been enacted at about the time of the client’s husband’s death, became law.]  

NEGLIGENCE INJURIES | AUTO INJURIES | TRUCK INJURIES | PREMISES INJURIES | PRODUCT INJURIES



CONTACT US TODAY

Our attorneys persistently pursue maximum compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Call today to arrange your FREE initial consultation.

 804-794-4030 or contact us online