With over 50 years of combined experience in aviation law, our firm is one of the leading firms in aviation litigation for plaintiffs on the West Coast. No firm in Portland or Oregon has as much experience and success in uncovering the facts and representing the families of those injured or killed in aircraft accidents. Aviation attorneys Bob Hopkins and Matt Clarke lead the aviation practice, devoting the majority of their time and practice to representing families suffering from the loss of a loved one or those seriously injured in airplane and helicopter crashes; determining the cause or causes of the crashes; finding answers for the families and victims; and obtaining recoveries from responsible parties. Bob and Matt have obtained over $75 million in settlements and verdicts for their clients in just the past four years. Most recently they prevailed at trial in 2013 with a $17 million verdict against Lycoming Engines awarded by a Seattle jury for the crash of a Cessna aircraft resulting in the untimely deaths of the pilot and her 10 year old daughter.
Bob is a well-known aviation attorney, having practiced in Portland with our firm for over 35 years. He has represented clients in numerous aviation cases and against scores of aircraft and helicopter manufacturers, component suppliers, airlines, and commercial operators. His litigation experience extends throughout the West Coast and elsewhere, including several high-profile cases in the Northwest. Bob is also a seasoned trial attorney, having obtained some of the highest jury verdicts in Oregon.
Matt began his legal career working for The Wolk Law Firm in Philadelphia where the firm’s practice is devoted entirely to plane and helicopter accident litigation, representing families and injured victims in dozens of aviation cases in state and federal courts throughout the country. Even before Matt joined Landye Bennett Blumstein in 2008, Bob and Matt had worked together on a number of aviation cases, including the crashes of a Piper Saratoga and a Columbia (Lancair) 300.
Also involved in the firm’s aviation law practice are highly qualified paralegals and the firm’s other attorneys experienced in appellate work and litigation in Alaska, Oregon, Washington and other states – these attorneys include Rick Yugler, Jennifer Gates, Patrick Foran, Christine Moore and James Fisher.
While Landye Bennett Blumstein’s specialized aviation practice is headquartered in Portland, Oregon, the nature of the practice often takes us to various other locations. For example, we have current or recent aviation cases in Arizona, Illinois, Texas, Alabama, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Washington and California.
There are important advantages to hiring experienced aircraft accident attorneys who have investigated and successfully litigated numerous fixed-wing private aircraft, helicopter, and commercial aircraft accidents and who are knowledgeable about the various aircraft and their history. Our aviation attorneys are familiar with the factors that contribute to crashes, including mechanical malfunctions due to airframe or component defects or improper maintenance, weather, piloting factors, instruments and avionics, and air traffic control, how these factors interrelate, and what signatures to look for; have worked with top experts in the field and know the appropriate experts to consult with in each particular case; have familiarity with the procedures of the NTSB and the FAA and obtaining information and cooperation from these agencies; and are able to strategically plan for and navigate the various legal and procedural issues and obstacles that arise in and are unique to aircraft accident litigation.