Biography

Trial ready, trial tested, but trial smart.  Whether the trial involves defending an insurance company, towboat company, dredging company, or any other marine industry or construction company, your defense attorney needs to be able to discern the cases in which your company truly has a defense versus the cases that should not be tried.  Having knowledge of the judge or jury pool that will decide the case is paramount, and having tried cases in Louisiana, Texas, and Florida, Matt has the experience to best advise clients as to how to proceed, and how to save money, whether it be by settling a bad case early, and avoiding defense costs, or taking it to trial to not pay a ridiculous and exorbitant settlement demand. 

Representative Experience

  • Defense verdict (judge-tried case) for major U.S. dredging company sued by four recreational boaters, inclusive of proving to the Court that the Oregon Rule (rebuttable presumption of fault against a moving vessel that strikes a stationary vessel) and Pennsylvania Rule (rebuttable presumption of fault against a party who violates a safety statute intended to prevented the type of harm that occurred) applied against the Plaintiffs, and that Plaintiffs failed to prevent any evidence to rebut the presumption of fault.
  • Defense verdict (jury) for major U.S. dredging company against a Jones Act seaman who fell down a set of stairs.
  • Defense verdict for Louisiana towing company accused of negligence by two Plaintiffs who, during the towage of a rig, alleged being struck by the swinging block of a crane caused by the towboat’s alleged failure to maintain tow.
  • Jury verdict finding Plaintiff 60% at fault and only awarding gross damages of $240,000.00, net recovery of $96,000.00, after last settlement demand of $550,000.00, and requesting a jury verdict in the amount of $2.1M in total damages.
  • Verdict (judge-tried case) in favor of major U.S. dredging company limiting Plaintiff’s recovery to maintenance and cure only, for 5 days, dismissing Plaintiff’s Jones Act negligence and unseaworthiness causes of action.
  • Verdict (judge-tried case) in favor of major U.S. dredging company limiting Plantiff’s recovery to maintenance and cure for knee replacement only, dismissing Plaintiff’s Jones Act negligence and unseaworthiness causes of action.
  • Verdict (jury) in favor of major U.S. dredging company limiting Plaintiff’s recovery to$198,710.00, after last settlement demand of $450,000.00.
  • Defense verdict (jury) finding Plaintiff failed to prove any accident happened, and finding Defendant, a Louisiana towing company, entitled to the McCorpen defense, denying Plaintiff any maintenance and cure benefits, after last settlement demand of $450,000.00.
  • Verdict (judge-tried case) in favor of lending institution, against Louisiana river tug company, for failure to repay promissory notes, in the amount of $2,234,469.57, plus 25% attorneys’ fees.
  • Verdict (judge-tried case) in favor of major U.S. dredging company finding Plaintiff failed to prove he sustained any injury in his alleged accident event, thus no maintenance and cure benefits were owed, and dismissal of Plaintiff’s Jones Act negligence and unseaworthiness causes of action.

Education

  • Tulane University School of Law  (J.D., 1996)
    • Sports Law Certificate
  • Tulane University  (1993)
    • A.B. Freeman School of Business
    • Accounting
    • Four-Year Letterman - Basketball

Bar Admissions

  • Louisiana
  • Texas
  • New York
  • Florida

Court Admissions

  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States Court of Appeals, Fifth, Second and Eleventh Circuit
  • United States District Court, Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of Louisiana
  • United States District Court, Eastern and Southern Courts of New York
  • United States District Court, Middle, Northern, and Southern Districts of Florida
  • United States District Court, Northern, Eastern, and Southern Districts of Texas

Professional and Community Activities

  • Louisiana State Bar Association
  • Texas State Bar Association
  • Florida State Bar Association
  • New York State Bar Association
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Maritime Law Association of the United States
  • The Mariners Club of the Port of New Orleans