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Jeffrey L. O'Hara

Partner

Overview

Jeffrey O'Hara is an experienced litigator who, as of May 2019, has handled approximately 80 jury trials with 64 verdicts in a wide array of subject areas. A Certified Civil Trial Attorney since 1999, Jeff focuses primarily on defending casualty cases involving large exposure, catastrophic events. He has also been called upon to defend complex commercial disputes.

Jeff is a four-time recipient of the "Bullseye Barrister" distinction for outstanding trial service from a Fortune 100 national retailer (December 2007, July 2009, May 2010 and July 2013) and has been named to The International Who's Who of Franchise Lawyers. Jeff has also been a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) since 2003, attaining the current rank of Advocate.

Jeff is a member of several prestigious trial associations, including the Litigation Counsel of America (LCA), the International Society of Barristers (ISOB), the Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel (FDCC), the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC), and the Defense Research Institute’s (DRI)'s Trial Tactics Steering Committee. He is also accredited by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for the preparation, presentation and prosecution of claims for veterans’ benefits (March 2019 to present). In addition, he served as a member of the legal committee for USA Triathlon and was the Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for the 2014 Special Olympics USA National Games. Notably, Jeff is a founding principal in One Vet @ A Time, Inc. d/b/a Project OVAT, a non-profit entity that provides medical and legal support at no cost to select veterans pursuing VA claims.

Experience

Representative Experience

  • Linwood v. Schindler Elevator Corporation, Southern District of New York, Opening Demand - $4.5 million, Final Offer - $300,000, 3 days of trial - directed verdict in favor of defense
  • Vracevic v. Fabcon East, Superior Court of Connecticut (Hartford), Opening Demand - $9 million, 16 days of trial - hung jury
  • Rattner v. Chubb National Insurance Company, Eastern District of Virginia, Opening Demand - $11.5 million, Final Offer - $0, 6 days of trial – policy declared void per fraud/concealment and intentional acts provisions, verdict of $945,000 on counterclaim.
  • Ahsan v. Staples, Eastern District of New York (Brooklyn), Opening Demand - $2 million, Final Offer - $150,000, 6 days of trial – no cause for action
  • Malik v. Cooper Tire & Rubber Company, District of New Jersey (Newark), Opening Demand - $25 million, Final Offer - $3 million, 3 days of trial – case resolved during plaintiff’s proofs (terms of resolution confidential)
  • Kinghorn v. Apex Tool Group, Superior Court of Massachusetts (Middlesex County), Opening Demand - $32 million, Final Offer - $2.5 million, 13 days of trial – verdict of $16 million (terms of post-verdict resolution confidential)
  • Brown-Obot v. Helal, Superior Court of New Jersey (Essex County) Opening Demand - $1 million, Final Offer – $0, 6 days of trial – no cause for action
  • Sosa v. Clayton Concrete, Superior Court of New Jersey (Essex County) Opening Demand - $6 million, Final Offer - $1 million, 8 days of trial – damages only verdict of $675,000
  • Connors v. Target Corporation, Superior Court of New Jersey (Essex County) Opening Demand - $5 million, Final Offer - $350,000, 6 days of trial – verdict of $375,000. Secured full indemnity and reimbursement of all defense costs from co-defendant post-verdict
  • Miller v. Duane Reade, Supreme Court of New York (Kings County) Opening Demand - $100 million, Final Offer - $20 million, 35 days of trial – case resolved at close of plaintiff’s proofs for $22 million
  • Walczak v. Target Corp., Superior Court of New Jersey (Middlesex County) Opening Demand - $1.2 million, Final Offer - $0, 6 days of trial – no cause for action. Secured reimbursement of all defense costs from co-defendant post-verdict
  • Smith v. Ratan R. Park, Superior Court of New Jersey (Bergen County) Opening Demand - $15 million, Final Offer - $4 million, 12 days of trial – no cause for action
  • Melville v. US Bancorp, Supreme Court of New York (Kings County) Opening Demand – $2.5 million, Final Offer – $0, 5 days of trial (terms of post-liability verdict resolution confidential)
  • Olan v. Target Corp., Eastern District of New York (Brooklyn) Opening Demand – $1.2 million, Final Offer - $100,000, 4 days of trial – no cause for action
  • Marrero v. Target Corp., Supreme Court of New York (Bronx County) Opening Demand – $5.6 million, Final Offer – $300,000, 13 days of trial – verdict of $1.3 million (terms of post-verdict resolution confidential)
  • Edison Salvage v. Garden State Paper Company, Superior Court of New Jersey (Bergen County) Opening Demand – $3.25 million, Final Offer – $260,000, 2 phase trial (1st phase 6 days, 2nd phase 2 days) – verdict of $295,000
  • White v. Morcos, Superior Court of New Jersey (Passaic County) Opening Demand $2 million, Final Offer – $0, 14 days of trial, directed verdict as to Morcos, $925,000 verdict as to other defendant
  • Alfone v. Caputo, Superior Court of New Jersey (Essex County) Opening Demand – $1 million, Final Offer – $0, 4 days of trial – no cause for action

Activities

Professional and Community Affiliations

  • American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), Advocate (2003 – present)
  • International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC), Member (2004 – present)
  • Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel (FDCC), Member (2011 – present)
  • International Society of Barristers (ISOB), Member (2015 – present)
  • Litigation Counsel of America (LCA), Member (2019 – present)
  • USLAW, Board of Directors (2008 – 2013)
  • Defense Research Institute (DRI), Member; Trial Tactics Steering Committee (2003 – 2012)

News & Insights

Speaking Engagements

  • Speaker, “Driving Favorable Resolution Through Effective Negotiation,”  
    Chubb Group; New Haven, CT, 02.2019
  • American Bus Association - CEO’s Forum; Louisville, KY, 01.2019
  • Featured Speaker, “Early Resolution Strategies – The Settlement Counsel Model,” 
    Chubb Group; Brandywine, DE, 11.2017; Alpharetta, GA, 4.2018; London, UK, 09.2018
  • Speaker, "Catastrophic Event, Devastating Exposure: A Unique Approach to Fixing the Worst Problems,"
    IADC; Quebec City, Canada, 07.2017
  • Faculty, ITAP,
    Widener University; Chester, PA, 2003-present
  • Speaker, "The Ripple Effect – Employee & Public Safety,"
    Schindler Elevator Corporation Senior Leadership Meeting; West Palm Beach, FL, 02.2017
  • Speaker, "The Nuts and Bolts of TBI Claims," 
    Walmart TBI Center for Excellence Project; Bentonville, AR, 04.2016
  • Speaker, "Is your TBI Really TBS?,"
    ACE Group; Lafayette Hill, PA, 06.2015
  • Speaker, "The Anatomy of a Large Exposure Claim,"
    Great American Insurance Group; Phoenix, AZ, 05.2015
  • Speaker, "Ethics in Negotiations,"
    USLAW; Santa Monica, CA, 06.2013
  • Speaker, "Trial Tactics,"
    DRI; Las Vegas, NV, 03.2013
  • Faculty, ASIS International mock trial presentations
    Chicago, IL (September 2013); Philadelphia, PA (September 2012); Orlando, FL(September 2009), 02.2013
  • Speaker, "Litigation Lessons from Little League,"
    USLAW; Washington, D.C., 10.2012
  • Speaker, "Planes, Trains, and Automobiles,"
    USLAW; Phoenix, AZ, 04.2011
  • Speaker, "Damages,"
    DRI; Las Vegas, NV, 03.2011
  • Program Chair, New York Regional Meeting,
    IADC; New York, NY, 11.2010
  • Program Chair, "Spoliation of Evidence – the New Tort?"
    USLAW; Miami, FL, 08.2010
  • Faculty, ABOTA Trial College, 
    Princeton University; Princeton, NJ, 06.2010
  • Speaker, "Damages,"
    DRI; Las Vegas, NV, 03.2010
  • Faculty, IADC Trial Academy
    Stanford University; Stanford, CA, 07.2008
  • Chair, USLAW Spring Conference
    Miami, FL, 04.2008
  • Program Chair, "Complex Medicine,"
    DRI; Santa Monica, CA, 11.2005
  • Speaker, "Complex Medicine for Trial Lawyers,"
    DRI; Miami, FL, 11.2003

Honors

  • Best Lawyers of America (2020)
    • Product Liability Litigation - Defendants
  • Certified Civil Trial Attorney (1999 – Present)
    • Recertified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey in 2006, 2011 and 2016
  • "AV Preeminent" rated by Martindale-Hubbell 
  • “America’s Top 100 Attorneys” – New Jersey Lifetime Achievement designation (2016)
  • "Bullseye Barrister" award for outstanding trial service from Target Corporation: December 2007, July 2009, May 2010 and July 2013
  • Named to The International Who's Who of Franchise Lawyers
  • Recipient of the inaugural O'Hagen Award for Outstanding Service, USLAW (2007)

Education

Widener University School of Law (J.D., cum laude, 1992)

University of California, Davis (B.A., Political Science, Minor in Education, 1988)

Mercer County College (A.A., Humanities, 1986)

Admissions

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