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State Bar of Pennsylvania, U.S. District Court and Court of Appeals, Third Circuit. - 1973
State Bar of Arizona and Federal District Court - 1994
U.S. Supreme Court, the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 9th, 10th, and 11th U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal, and Pro Hac Vice in State courts across the United States including Texas, Mississippi, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Illinois, Indiana, Tennessee, Vermont, New Mexico, Florida, Delaware, Georgia, Ohio, Hawaii, Maine, New York, Nevada, Virginia, Michigan, Utah and California.
Recent National Recognition
Larry E. Coben was selected for inclusion in 2011 Pennsylvania Super Lawyers®.
2010 American Association for Justice, Steven J. Sharp Public Service Award—for the representation of thousands of consumers before the U.S. Congress and in the Bankruptcy Court in a political and legal battle to prevent General Motors Corporation and Chrysler Corporation from escaping personal responsibility for the sale of defective products through the Bankruptcy Courts.
2009 Attorneys’ Information Exchange Group Presidential Award for Outstanding Service in the Pursuit of Justice.
Cumberland School of Law of Samford University - J.D., cum laude (1973)
Athens College - B.A. (1968)
Professional Memberships and Associations
- Pennsylvania Bar Association
- Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association
- Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association
- Arizona State Bar Association
- Maricopa County Bar Association
- The American Association for Justice
- Products Liability Section Chair
- American Bar Association
- Member Publications Editorial Board (1999 - Present)
- Past Vice Chair Medicine and Law
- CLE Board
- Emerging Issues Committee
- Arizona Trial Lawyers Association - Board of Directors (1999-Present)
- Western Trial Lawyers Association - Board of Directors (2002-Present)
- American National Standards Institute Z90 Committee (Helmet Safety): Chairman of Labeling Sub-Committee (1988-94)
- Society of Automotive Engineers (1997-Present)
- Institute for Injury Reduction (IIR): Founding member, Chairman of the Board (1988-93)
- Observer to the Drafting Committee on a Uniform Interstate Depositions and Discovery of Documents Act.
Teaching ActivitiesArizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, Guest Speaker “Products Liability”, March 2008-2009
Graduate course at the Engineering School of the University of Pennsylvania, entitled "Engineering In Litigation," 1989-90.
Selected Noteworthy Cases as Lead Counsel
Buongiovanni v. General Motors Corporation, Bucks County, Pennsylvania. $26 Million Dollar Verdict against the car manufacturer for the defective design of the passenger’s seat back, which failed in a rear end collision and caused the passenger to be thrown in the back seat and rendered a quadriplegic.
Connolly v. Dobbins, et. al., Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania. $20 Million Dollar Verdict against a trucking company for the brain injury suffered by a single 28 year old man who drove his car into the rear end of a tractor trailer stopped on the Skuylkill Expressway.
Pursell v. Volkswagen, Court of Common Pleas, Bucks County Pennsylvania., February 2008. [$10.2 million dollar verdict against Volkswagen in a products liability case for lack of an anti-submarining ramp for the rear center seated occupant].
Harris v. Ford Motor Company, New Jersey Super. Ct., September 2002. [$8.8 million dollar verdict against an auto manufacturer for an injured person in a products liability case stemming from a roll over accident].
Walker v. Schutt Sports Sales Group, Gayson Ct., April 2000. Largest known verdict ($12 million dollars) against a football helmet company - without any setoff - regarding spinal cord injury.
Yarusso v. Bell Helmets, Delaware Super. Ct.. First reported verdict against motorcycle helmet manufacturer regarding helmet shock attenuation design and spinal cord injury.
Munro v. Galati and General Motors Corporation, Arizona Supreme Court - No Federal Preemption of "No Air Bag Claim" (938P.2d 1114 (1997)).
Peisino v. Riddell Corporation, Wilmington, Delaware. First known verdict in the nation for a football player who suffered a spinal cord injury due to helmet design/shock attenuation.]
Hoak v. Pottsville Hospital, Pottsville, Pennsylvania. $6 Million Dollar verdict for a motorist who was caused to become paralyzed due to the failure to timely diagnose a tear to his aorta.
Gaudio v. Ford Motor Company, 976 A.2d 524 (Pa. Super. 2009), review denied. Settled in Pennsylvania a host of substantive and evidentiary issues regarding a consumer’s right to recover under strict products liability principles of law.
Attorney News & Publications
Can Helmets Protect Against Brain Injuries in Football? - Pennsylvania Law Weekly, November 2013
Former players file another concussion suit against NFL, - Newsworks, Jan 2012
Crashworthiness Litigation, 2d, American Association of Justice, 2008.
Products Liability Litigation: Product Studies—Chapters on Crashworthiness, Frontal, Restraint Systems, Seat Belts. Clark, Boardman and Callaghan, 1996.
Pennsylvania Products Liability Guide, Bisel Publishing Co., 1993.
Attorney News & Publications
Will Seauís Death Impact Concussion Lawsuits? May 11, 2012.
The Evolving Landscape of Modern Tort Liability. The Legal Intelligencer, Jan. 13, 2012.
For N.F.L., Concussion Suits May Be Test for Sport Itself. New York Times, Dec. 29, 2011.
Long way to go on youth sports safety. Philly Online, Dec. 2, 2011.
BRIEF OF Amicus Curiae: Center for Auto Safety in Support of Appellants and Supporting the Reversal of the Decision of the Lower Court
How To Buy A Safe Vehicle, The Safety Report, Fall 2011.
The Nitty-Gritty on Buying a Safe Car, Originally published in The Safety Report, Fall 2011.
Retired Football Players Face Off Against NFL, PA-Law-Blogs.com, 08/19/2011
Players accuse NFL of negligence, ESPN, 08/19/2011
Concussion Suit Seeks Better Health Monitoring, New York Times, 08/20/2011
Law Firm Integration - A Sprint or a Marathon? Law.com, 2/15/2011
The da Vinci Defect—Manufacturer of Surgical Robot Issues Urgent Notification - InjuryBoard, May 22, 2013
Recovery for Mesothelioma Victims - InjuryBoard, Feb 15, 2011
To The Victim: WHAT IS MESOTHELIOMA? - InjuryBoard, Feb 01, 2011
MESOTHELIOMA: Is There Help? - InjuryBoard, Nov 24, 2010
Local Lawyer Offers Advice For Making Sure Your Kidís Toys Are Safe - By John Ostapkovich, CBS Philly 12/4/2010
Representing the Catastrophically Injured - The Legal Intelligencer - Understanding brain and spinal cord injuries, design defects that cause them. Oct 15, 2010
Expert Testimony—The Daubert Rule, Trial Judges—Gatekeeper or Executioner?, The Arizona Association For Justice, September 2010.
In Personal Injury Cases, Instructing Juries On Loss of Life’s Pleasures: IT’S THE RIGHT THING TO DO, AZTLA Advocate, March 2008.
Defeating the Federal Preemption Defense in Product Liability Cases, American Association for Justice, Spring 2007.
Evidentiary and Substantive Issues in Products Liability Cases, AzTLA Advocate, April 2007.
Instructing Juries on Loss of Life’s Pleasures; It’s the Right Thing To Do, Arizona Attorney, April 2006.
Debunking the Malibu Myth and How to Try a Roof Crush Case and Win, Western Trial Lawyers, June 2005.
Contingency Fees: If It’s Not Broken, Why Fix It?, Arizona Attorney, August 2004.
Conspiracy of Silence: Hidden Seat Back Hazards, TRIAL, March 2004.
If a Product is Defective, Why Must it Also Be “Unreasonably Dangerous?, AzTLA Advocate, March 2004.
On-Road Rollover Hazards: Why Do Vehicles Roll Over?, AzTLA Advocate, January 2004.
Children in Seat Belts in Crashes, AzTLA Advocate, May 2003.
Helmet Protection: Why Not More?, Proceedings of the 2002 SAE Motorsports Engineering Conference and Exhibition (pg. 649-653), December 2002.
Why are Americans at Grave Risk of Catastrophic Injury in Rollover Accidents?, Andrews Automotive Litigation Reporter, December 2002.
I Was Wearing My Seat Belt - Honestly! How to Prove That Your Client was Belted, AzTLA Advocate, September 2002.
A Products Liability Defendant Cannot Obtain Apportionment of Fault When the Only Other 'Party At Fault' is the Product, AzTLA Advocate, May 2002.
What is the Fairest and Fullest Method of Evaluating Future Economic Losses in Personal Injury and Wrongful Death Actions in Arizona? AzTLA Advocate, December 2001.
The Anatomy of a Frontal Crashworthiness Case, AzTLA Advocate, September 2001.
The Anatomy of a Frontal Crashworthiness Case, Andrews Automotive Litigation Reporter, August 2001.
What is Products Liability in the New Millennium? AzTLA Advocate, April 2001.
Accident Analysis of Air Bag Induced Injuries/Fatalities, AzTLA Advocate, September 2000.
Competing Tort Law Forums: Courts vs. Legislatures, AzTLA Advocate, September 2000.
The Air Bag Preemption War, ATLA Trial Magazine, September 2000.
Protecting Litigation Support Materials From Discovery, ATLA Trial Magazine, July 2000.
Large Trucks, Danger on the Road, AzTLA Advocate, June 2000.
Should A Product Manufacturer Be Held Liable For Failing To Recall A Defective Product Learned To Be Defective? AzTLA Advocate, February 2000.
Presentation and Seminars
Roof Strength and Pre-tensioner Seat Belt Protection”, AIEG 2007 Seminar, New York, NY, October 2007.
“Auto Focus”, AIEG 2007 Seminar, Chicago, Illinois, April 19-21, 2007.
“The Anatomy of a Trial for New Lawyers”, Lorman Education Services, Phoenix, Arizona, April 21, 2006.
“Earn & Collect Your Fees Ethically”, State Bar of Arizona, Phoenix, Arizona, March 27, 2006.
“Cars, Trains - But No Planes”, Arizona Trial Lawyers Association, Phoenix Arizona, March 18, 2005.
“Auto Focus”, AIEG 2004 Seminar, Santa Fe, New Mexico, October 27-30, 2004.
“Experts Only as Good as The Lawyers Who Prepare Them”, Arizona Trial Lawyers Association, Phoenix, Arizona, October 15, 2004.
“Hold Me Back! Restraint Systems: The Dynamic State of Vehicle Safety & Their Impact on Litigation”, Maricopa County Bar Association Seminar, Phoenix, Arizona, May 26, 2004.
“Products Liability”, Lorman Education Services, Phoenix, Arizona, May 25, 2004.
“Identifying Product Liability Cases in Auto Litigation”, Arizona Trial Lawyers Association, Auto Litigation/Arbitration/Mediation Program, Phoenix, Arizona, March 19, 2004.
"Rollovers, Crashworthiness, Etc.," AzTLA seminar: "On the Road Again", Phoenix, Arizona, November 14, 2003.
"AIEG Under Attack," AIEG 2003 Auto Focus seminar, Santa Monica, California, October 24, 2003.
"Air Bag Discovery," AIEG 2002 Air Bag Summit V, Kansas City, Missouri, May 16-17, 2002.
"Wrongful Death & Survivorship - Law & Proof of Wrongful Death & Survivorship Damages," Arizona Trial Lawyers Association Damages Seminar, Phoenix, Arizona, March 22, 2002.
"How to Present and Attack Accident Reconstruction Simulations: Advice and Demonstration," (presented in conjunction with Thomas M. Klein of Bowman & Brooke, LLP, and Stephen M. Werner, Ph.D., P.E., of Exponent), ABA's Emerging Issues in Motor Vehicle Product Liability Litigation, Phoenix, Arizona, March 21-22, 2002.
"Networking on the Internet - Sharing Information While Maintaining Confidentially and Work Product Privileges," ATLA 2001 Annual Convention, July 14-18, 2001.
"Recreational Helmets - Bicycle and Football: Design Defects Producing Head and Neck Injuries," ATLA 2001 Annual Convention, July 14-18, 2001.
"Work Product," AIEG Spring Seminar, Denver, Colorado, March 30-April 1, 2001.
"Recreational Helmets—Design Defects Producing Head and Neck Injuries," Texas Trial Lawyers Association, Products Liability Seminar, February 2001.
"Crashworthiness: Identifying and Pursuing Safety Issues in Litigation," AzTLA, Learned Luncheon Series, March 13, 2000.
"Competing Tort Law Forums: Courts vs. Legislature," ABA Section of Litigation, Products Liability Committee, Mid-year Meeting, February 3, 2000.