Thomas M. DeMicco Partner

     

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Thomas DeMicco defends domestic and foreign manufacturers in product liability lawsuits on a national basis, with a focus on claims arising from fires and explosions. Tom’s extensive fire investigation experience is particularly valuable to the firm’s clients, many of which manufacture and distribute household kitchen appliances and consumer electronics.

Tom began his legal career at Wilson Elser in 2001 and has established himself as a leading contributor to the firm’s Product Liability, Prevention & Government Compliance practice and he is a member of the firm's Pharmaceuticals & Medical Devices practice. Throughout his career, he has defended the firm’s clients both locally and nationally. Tom has extensive experience litigating cases in both the state and federal court systems.

Tom has lectured on topics such as,  “NFPA 921”, the “Consumer Product Safety Commission”  and “Fire investigation for the Product Liability Claim.”  He is regularly sought after by other attorneys within the firm for advice on fire investigation as well as general product liability matters. He is a member of the firm’s New York Metro Offices Peer Mentoring Committee. The Peer Mentoring program matches senior associates with junior associates who are new to the firm to ensure they receive sufficient resources to meet their career goals at Wilson Elser.

Areas of Focus

Product Liability
Tom is the creator, editor and a regular contributor to the firm's Product Liability Advocate blog (WEdefendproducts.com). Tom has investigated and defended scores of cases arising from fires that vary in their nature. He has handled cases involving electrical fires as well as those stemming from combustible dust fires, natural and propane gas fires, and incendiary fires.

The firm’s clients also benefit from Tom’s unique experience defending cell phone manufacturers and wireless network carriers, which often receive complaints that a cell phone handset or its lithium ion battery caused burn injuries and acoustic shock.

In addition to his experience with fire and cell phone litigation, Tom has defended personal injury actions involving a wide array of other products, including all-terrain vehicles, industrial machinery, building materials, construction equipment and swimming pools.

Tom also has considerable experience defending firm clients in civil litigation arising from insurance coverage disputes and breach of contract claims.

Representative Matters

MMG Insurance a/s/o Marc Berthiaume v. Samsung Electronics America, Inc. and Best Buy Inc: Obtained defense verdict on behalf of Samsung and Best Buy in a jury trial held in the U.S. District Court, District of New Hampshire (admitted pro hac vice), successfully defending companies against product liability and breach of warranty allegations.
 
Mark and Theresa Bolt v. Omegaflex: 
Obtained dismissal of product liability action filed against OmegaFlex in Circuit Court for City of Richmond, VA (admitted pro hac vice), setting forth ground-breaking case law precedent for the CSST manufacturing industry as a whole with respect to the meaning of the "equipment or machinery" exception to Virginia's Statute of Repose defense. After briefing the issue and representing OmegaFlex at an evidentiary hearing, the court granted OmegaFlex's Plea in Bar based on the Statute of Repose defense.

Milford Fabricating Co. v. Amada Co. Ltd. et. al., US District Court, Dist. of Connecticut, (2012) (admitted pro hac vice) Successfully moved to dismiss a multi million dollar product liability claim made against a Japanese manufacturer of industrial Laser Cutting machine. The lawsuit arose from a fire that ignited in a sheet metal fabricating shop in March of 2009. The motion was made on the grounds that the District Court lacked personal jurisdiction over the Japanese Defendant, Amada Co. Ltd. The court granted the motion after jurisdictional discovery was conducted and oral argument was heard on the motion.

Wawenssa Insurance Co. a/s/o Sandy Asch v. Applica Consumer Products Inc.: Obtained a defense verdict on behalf of a household appliance manufacturer in a product liability jury trial held in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California (admitted pro hac vice). The issue presented to the jury was whether a toaster oven distributed by the firm’s client contained a manufacturing defect that caused a house fire.

Jerome & Patricia Burke and Mid-Century Insurance Co. v. OmegaFlex Inc
. Obtained dismissal of multimillion-dollar product liability lawsuit filed against OmegaFlex in Circuit Court for Spotsylvania County, VA (admitted pro hac vice) after submission of plea in bar motion and bench trial.

Greenwood v. General Electric Co. Obtained summary judgment and complete dismissal of lawsuit filed against General Electric in New York State Supreme Court, Bronx County. The motion was granted after it was shown that plaintiff lacked sufficient evidence to establish a prima facie claim of strict product liability against GE. 

Supervise and coordinate the defense of a foreign manufacturer of consumer electronic products in product liability matters pending in the United States and Canada.

Defended a Canadian manufacturer of a double-hung window in a product liability claim brought in New York State Supreme Court, Nassau County, ultimately obtaining summary judgment on behalf of the manufacturer. Plaintiff sought seven-figure damages for injuries allegedly caused by a window sash that fell out of its frame and struck her in the head.

Arbitrated a business interruption coverage claim on behalf of an insurance carrier client brought by an insured that sold and serviced copy machines throughout New York City. The case arose out of the 2001 destruction of the World Trade Center and was arbitrated before 9-11 victims’ fund special master Kenneth Feinberg.