FITZHUGH & MARIANI has been resolving complex legal problems for clients since it was founded as Fitzhugh & Associates in 1986. All of our skilled and experienced attorneys have trial experience and have been in practice for more than seven years. Using skills learned at top-tier law schools, our attorneys seek cost-effective and appropriate resolutions for all of our clientele.
As the premier minority-owned law firm in New England, Fitzhugh & Mariani routinely handles assignments throughout the region. With offices in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut, and with attorneys admitted to practice throughout the Northeast, Fitzhugh & Mariani brings consistent solutions to our clients’ legal issues. Our mission is to add value to our clients by providing the highest quality legal services at competitive rates.
Attorney Fitzhugh leads the litigation and trial practice at Fitzhugh & Mariani. As the firm’s senior trial attorney, he has obtained defense verdicts in jury trials in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine and Rhode Island, including four wrongful death cases and multiple complex product liability cases.
Our litigation practice includes the defense of Title VII, Americans With Disabilities Act and ADEA claims, product liability, negligence and general commercial litigation cases and NASD arbitrations. The firm also defends and provides counseling with respect to ERISA claims. The firm has been designated as winning one of the “Top Ten Defense Verdicts in Massachusetts for 1995" and one of “The ‘Biggest’ Defense Wins of the Year in Massachusetts for 2005,” the latter involving a defense verdict on a premises liability claim brought by a plaintiff who was rendered a quadriplegic after an industrial accident at our client’s factory (Pelletier v. Main Street Textiles, 470 F3d 48 (1st Cir.2006) (denying motion for a new trial)). Other examples of the firm’s results include: Richards v. Hewlett-Packard Corp., 592 F.3d 232 (1st Cir.2010); Watson v. Eastman Kodak Co., 235 F.3d 851 (3rd Cir.2000); and Wilson v. The Prudential Ins. Co. et al., 117 F.Supp.2d 92 (D.Mass. 2000).
The firm’s most recent major accomplishments include reversal of a trial verdict that had been rendered in favor of a plaintiff who was removed from an American Airlines’ flight due to being perceived as a potential security risk, and who subsequently sued the airline for unlawful race and ethnic origin discrimination. The case was the first such action to go to trial against a commercial airline since 09/11 and the opinion is considered to be among the most significant for the industry on the issue of an airline’s discretion to enforce its security measures. Cerqueira v. American Airlines, 520 F.3d 1 (1st Cir.2008), reh. en banc den., 520 F.3d 20, cert. den., 129 S.Ct. 111 (2008). The firm is also at the forefront of cutting edge wage and hour issues; a recent success in that area includes obtaining dismissal of all claims asserted by skycaps in connection with curbside check-in fees on federal preemption grounds. DiFiore v. American Airlines, 646 F.3d 81 (1st Cir.2011), cert. den. --- U.S. ---, 2011 WL 3794274 (U.S.).
Some Reported Cases:
Boardman v. Prudential Ins. Co. of America, 337 F.3d 9 (1st Cir.2003) Carlton v. Prudential Ins. Co. of America, 596 F.Supp.2d 135, (D.Me. 2009) Cerqueira v. American Airlines, 520 F.3d 1 (1st Cir.2008), reh. en banc den., 520 F.3d 20, cert. den., 129 S.Ct. 111 (2008). Charlton Memorial Hospital v. The Travelers Ins. Co., 818 F.Supp. 456 (D.Mass. 1993) Colton v. The Travelers Ins. Co., 48 Mass.App.Ct. 1118, 723 NE.2d 48 (2000) DiFiore v. American Airlines, 646 F.3d 81 (1st Cir.2011) Downey v. Aetna Life Insurance Co., No. 12-10144-RWZ, 2013 WL 6147202 (Mass. November 22, 2013) Ferguson v. Host International Services, Inc., 53 Mass.App.Ct. 96, 757 NE.2d 267 (2001) Gammell v. Prudential Ins. Co. of America, 502 F.Supp.2d 167 (D.Mass 2007) Gregory v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 648 F.Supp.2d 591 (D.Vt. 2009) Hale v. Prudential Ins. Co. of America., 597 F.Supp.2d 174 (D.Mass. 2008) Lopez v. Equity Office Management, LLC, 597 F. Supp. 2d 189 (D.Mass. 2009) McLaughlin v. Prudential Ins. Co. of America, 319 F.Supp.2d 115 (D.Mass. 2004) Nicholson v. Prudential Ins. Co. of America, 235 F.Supp.2d 22 (D.Me. 2003) Pelletier v. Main Street Textiles, et al., 470 F.3d 48 (1st Cir.2006) Ramsdell v. Aetna Life Ins. Co., No. 1:11-CV-00398-GZS, 2012 WL 3575193 (D.Me. July 31, 2012) Richards v. Hewlett-Packard Corp., 592 F.3d 232, 239 (1st Cir.2010), cert. denied, ––– U.S. ––––, 131 S.Ct. 798, 178 L.Ed.2d 545 (2010) Robinson v. Prudential Ins. Co. of America, 56 Mass.App.Ct. 244, 776 NE.2d 458 (2002) Washington v. State Street Bank & Trust Co., 55 Fed.Appx. 7, 2003 WL 203479 (1st Cir. January 31, 2003) Watson v. Eastman Kodak Company, 235 F.3d 851 (3rd Cir.2000) Wilson v. Globe Specialty Products, Inc., 117 F.Supp.2d 92 (D.Mass. 2000)
Labor & Employment Law
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