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Stephen m. smith

Stephen Smith

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We bring the right response at the right time because we’re committed to your success

– Stephen M. Smith

 

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Red Blockquote

We bring the right response at the right time because we’re committed to your success

– Stephen M. Smith

 

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AREAS OF EXPERTISE

  • Brain Injury
  • Burn Injury
  • Personal Injury
  • Product Liability
  • Auto Defects

Stephen M. Smith, Esq., is an internationally recognized expert in traumatic brain injury litigation with over 47 years of experience.

As the founder of the Brain Injury Law Center, Smith has litigated serious and catastrophic injury cases throughout the U.S. and the world. He won the largest personal injury verdict in Virginia history and the largest mild traumatic brain injury verdict ever awarded in the world.

Smith has regularly and consistently obtained numerous multimillion-dollar settlements and verdicts nationwide for catastrophic and traumatic brain injury survivors. He has proudly represented thousands of survivors and their families who have been brave enough to speak with our team about their injury and how it has changed their life.

In 2019, Smith was inducted into the Virginia Lawyers Hall of Fame – an honor reserved for highly skilled attorneys who have made significant contributions during their careers. Frequently sought after as both a speaker and as co-counsel, he was included in the U.S. News Best Lawyers in America for 2021, where he has been consistently featured in previous editions. He also receives continued distinction as a Super Lawyer year after year. 

As past chairman of the American Association of Justice Traumatic Brain Injury Litigation Group, Smith is the only attorney from Virginia to ever be awarded a Diplomate status by the American Board of Trial Advocates and is also a national board member. He was president of the Brain Injury Association of Virginia, a board member of Public Justice, and a national board member of the Belli Society. Mr. Smith is an Adjunct Professor of Law and The Invited Litigator in Residence at The College of William and Mary School of Law.

Mr. Smith is President of the National Brain Injury Trial Lawyers Association and president-elect of the American Academy of Brain Injury Attorneys. He is listed in Washingtonian Magazine Top Lawyers and is listed in Washington, DC’s Best Lawyers.

Currently, Smith is a member of the National Trial Lawyers Association Executive Committee, National Secretary of the Association of Plaintiff Interstate Trucking Lawyers of America, and as a member of their national board. He is also a Charter Fellow of The Litigation Counsel of America, a member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, and is listed in Who’s Who in American Law.

 

AWARDS & ACCOLADES

  • Virginia Lawyers Hall of Fame
  • US News Best Lawyers in America
  • US News Best Law Firms 2021
  • Super Lawyers
  • President of the National of Brain Injury Trial Lawyers of America
  • Past President of the Brain Injury Association of Virginia
  • Internationally recognized expert in traumatic brain injury litigation
  • Martindale-Hubbell Preeminent A/V Rated
  • Only attorney from Virginia to ever be awarded Diplomate status by the American Board of Trial Advocates
  • Past Chairman of the Traumatic Brain Injury Litigation Group of the American Association of Justice
  • Licensed to practice in Virginia, New York and the District of Columbia and all other states by permission
  • Won the largest mild traumatic brain injury verdict ever awarded in the world
  • Won the largest personal injury verdict ever awarded in Virginia
  • Public Justice national board member
  • Belli Society national board member
  • Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum member
  • Listed in Who’s Who in American Law Law Dragon ~ 500 Leading Lawyers in America
  • Leaders in the Law
  • Washington Post “DC’s Best Lawyers”
  • Graduate of Marquette University, College of Health Sciences, in Neuro Anatomical
  • Dissection of the Human Brain and Spinal Cord
  • Brain Injury Law Center – Advocates for Brain Injury Survivors and Their Families Throughout the United States and the World

 

TESTIMONIALS

 

I have had the pleasure of working alongside Stephen Smith, David Holt and Stewart Gill for several years now, representing traumatic brain injury survivors in fights against insurance companies. These guys are a pleasure to work with and are true trial lawyers who fight for their clients day in and day out in court.

Kevin M  stars

AREAS OF EXPERTISE

AREAS OF EXPERTISE

  • Brain Injury
  • Burn Injury
  • Personal Injury
  • Product Liability
  • Auto Defects
45 years of excellence, Hall of Fame

Congratulations to our founder of the Brain Injury Law Center and the managing partner of the 71-year-old Smith Law Center for your induction into the Hall of Fame. Thank you for pioneering the art of moving the “invisible injury” and mastering demonstrative evidence.

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DELIVERING RESULTS SINCE 1949

We are one of Virginia’s largest and most successful law firms.

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IF WE DON’T WIN, YOU DON’T PAY

There are absolutely no out-of-pocket fees for filing a claim.

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SPEAK TO US NOW FOR FREE

Your legal questions answered, completely free of charge.

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IF WE DON’T WIN, YOU DON’T PAY

There are absolutely no out-of-pocket fees for filing a claim.

If you or a relative had a severe reaction to military housing mold, it might be time to talk with a toxic mold lawyer. Mold is everywhere, and can be dangerous. Researchers have linked mold to serious respiratory illnesses in some individuals.

Smith Law Center may be able to help if a property owner failed to keep you safe from mold in your military housing. We are one of Virginia’s oldest and most successful firms. We know how to hold negligent property owners responsible, especially when the military is involved.

Call us at (757) 244-700 or contact us online to set up a free consultation. There’s no fee for learning more about Virginia mold laws, your rights, and your legal options.

Mold in Military Housing

Black mold in military housing became widely known when Reuters published an investigation in 2018. Since then, the Department of Defense and the housing providers were supposed to take steps to improve the situation.

Unfortunately, a 2020 audit by the DoD Office of Inspector General found many issues, including the need for mold remediation, still persist.

Monetary Awards in Military Housing Toxic Mold Cases

If the property owner lets toxic mold run wild and continue to cause you harm, talk with our toxic mold attorneys about filing a lawsuit.

You may receive financial compensation for:

Service members and their families do not receive different types of damages than civilians. These are civil lawsuits in traditional courts of law.

Military Housing Mold Toxicity Symptoms

The Institute of Medicine discovered there was evidence connecting exposure to indoor mold with:

  • Upper respiratory tract symptoms;
  • Coughing;
  • Wheezing;
  • Asthma symptoms in individuals with asthma; and
  • Hypersensitivity pneumonitis in individuals with weak immune systems.

There is also limited evidence that mold causes respiratory illnesses in healthy children or causes people to develop asthma.

Understanding Exposure to Toxic Mold in Military Housing

The topic of toxic mold is complicated. This Is in part because the term “toxic mold” isn’t accurate. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) explains mold isn’t toxic or poisonous. However, some molds are toxigenic, which means they produce toxins called mycotoxins.

Mold is common in military housing because it’ll grow anywhere there’s moisture. That includes on and inside walls, carpet, upholstery, wallpaper, and heating and air conditioning systems. This is especially pronounced in humid conditions such as those present in Virginia.

Some people have no difficulties around mold, even large infestations in their homes. Other individuals are sensitive to molds, including those that produce mycotoxins. Someone can have a severe reaction when exposed to a large amount of mold indoors.

People may be more likely to experience mold toxicity symptoms if they have:

  • Allergies,
  • An underlying lung disease,
  • Immune suppression,
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder,
  • Asthma, or
  • Another chronic respiratory disease.

Common Types of Military Housing Mold

When you’re trying to learn more from the CDC and other resources, you’ll see the word “fungus” a lot. Mold is a type of fungus, which is something that exists all around us. Fungi are living organisms different from animals, plants, and bacteria. There are over 200,000 types of fungi and over 100,000 types of molds.

If you discovered mold in your military housing, it could be Cladosporium, Penicillium, Stachybotrys chartarum, Aspergillus, or many other types. Stachybotrys is what everyone knows as black mold. Aspergillus is a common indoor fungus, which releases mycotoxins and can cause illness. Your symptoms may resemble common allergy or asthma symptoms.

Who is Liable for Military Housing Mold?

Since 1996, most military housing has come under the management of private companies:

  • Belfour Beatty Communities: Fort Eustis and Fort Story/li>
  • Lincoln Military Housing: Dahlgren, Little Creek, Naval Station Norfolk, Northwest Annex, Oceana, Portsmouth, Quantico, and Yorktown/li>
  • Hunt Military Communities: Fort Lee and Langley AFB

Outside of Virginia, Lendlease and Corvias Military Living are two more housing providers. Together, these five companies formed the Military Housing Association.

Military families living in on-base housing must take their complaints to their private management company — not the military. The company is responsible for providing habitable conditions and making repairs, including mold remediation.

If you’re unsure about your rights, review your state law and local ordinances about mold. In general, it’s the landlord’s responsibility to provide a habitable unit, which means it has to be safe to live in. A unit isn’t safe if it’s causing a tenant health issues due to mold.

The Virginia Residential Landlord and Tenant Act requires landlords to disclose if there’s mold in the written report of the move-in inspection. If a tenant discovers visible mold in the unit, then the Act requires the landlord to remove the mold and relocate the tenant until it’s gone at no additional cost to the tenant.

Unfortunately, many families find their housing providers aren’t receptive to complaints. Attorney Stephen M. Smith has handled many mold lawsuits against military housing providers who fail to abide by their lease terms and the law when it comes to mold remediation and other hazards.

Other Hazards in Military Housing

Many service members and their families deal with uncomfortable, if not hazardous, conditions in privatized military housing, including:

Lead Paint: Lead-based paint can cause headaches, nausea, fatigue, irritability, behavioral problems, learning disabilities, seizures, organ damage, and in extreme cases, death.

Asbestos: Exposure to asbestos harms a person’s lungs, and can lead to lung fibrosis (scarring), lung cancer, and mesothelioma.

Radon: Radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking. It naturally forms underground, however cracks and gaps in buildings lead to over-exposure indoors.

Poor Water Quality: Dozens of military sites have water with detectable levels of harmful chemicals.

Other issues involve rodent or insect infestations, pesticides, and faulty electrical wiring.

What Happens When a Lot of People Get Sick?

Sometimes mold exposure impacts a single individual or family. However, when the mold spreads throughout military housing, it can impact hundreds or thousands of people.

Occasionally, a large enough group of people are injured to allow for a class action or mass tort lawsuit. A class action lawsuit is one where a class representative acts as the plaintiff on behalf of the group of hurt individuals. Not every victim participates in the lawsuit. There are rules about when a group is big and similar enough to create a class action.

Mass tort lawsuits are different. When there are fewer plaintiffs who have their own set of circumstances, each person files a lawsuit. For efficiency’s sake, one or a couple of law firms may represent most plaintiffs, and the lawsuits are consolidated in a federal court.

Call the Military Housing Mold Lawyers at Smith Law Center for Help Right Away

Mold cases come about in a few ways. You or a loved one may start getting sick, and after weeks or months of struggling to find answers, you finally realize your military housing has a mold infestation. In other cases, you struggle with visible mold and then become ill.

Once you connect the illness with the mold, it’s time to talk with a toxic mold lawyer. Reaching out to an attorney early helps you build a strong compensation claim. We know how to collect evidence, identify who is liable, and craft a successful argument for a settlement or court award.

Attorney Stephen M. Smith has decades of experience handling injury claims and has been internationally recognized for his work. He has litigated cases involving catastrophic injuries and complex legal and scientific issues. In 2019, he was inducted into the Virginia Lawyers Hall of Fame.

You’re in good hands when you come to Smith Law Center for help. Reach out online or call (757) 244-7000 to schedule your 100% free consultation.

Military Housing Mold Lawsuits: FAQs

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DELIVERING RESULTS SINCE 1949

We are one of Virginia’s largest and most successful law firms.

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU - Tablet View

WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU


Use the simple form below to send a message directly to our lawyers. We will respond within 1 hour or less during business hours.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.