Every December, Patrick M. Regan knows they will come, just as they have for the last 15 years. The holiday greeting and accompanying photo make him smile. And just as he has done for years, Regan will place the updated photo in a frame on his desk. The simple gifts are symbols of thanks from a client Regan helped long ago — a mother of five daughters whose husband was killed in a serious accident.
For more than 30 years Regan has focused his practice on representing clients in medical malpractice, product liability and other serious personal injury and wrongful death cases. Regan has handled more than 60 cases that have resulted in settlements or verdicts in excess of $1 million.
“After a case is successfully tried or resolved through a settlement process, we have a client or a family who is truly grateful for the time, energy and effort that we put into their case,” Regan says. “People come to me at the lowest point of their lives after suffering a great tragedy or losing a loved one. We are able to help them rebuild their lives. It’s very rewarding.”
Regan has found that through relentless effort and perseverance, some positivity can come out of life-changing tragedies. Such was the case of David Rosenbaum, a New York Times reporter. A robbery attack left Rosenbaum with a critical head injury. It took the emergency rescue personnel more than an hour to get to the hospital because of a series of unconscionable delays, Regan says.
When Rosenbaum arrived to the emergency room, one of the rescue personnel gave the correct information to one of the nurses at the hospital. But another nurse mistakenly assumed that Rosenbaum was drunk, and took the stretcher down the hall out of sight of everyone, where he stayed for an hour, Regan says. Rosenbaum died from his injuries.
“Rosenbaum’s family told the city that if it promised to establish a task force to investigate what happened and consider implementing ways to change how emergency medical services are provided, the family would dismiss the law suit for no money,” Regan says. “The city agreed.”
The task force included local leaders and experts from around the country.
“For years to come, people will continue to benefit from the changes that occurred from Rosenbaum’s case,” Regan says. “I hope that this case will inspire other lawyers to look for ways to effect powerful safety changes through an individual’s tragedy. Because of the nature of our cases, we don’t always have that opportunity.”
Regan also represented Rosenbaum’s family with a claim against the hospital. Before the trial, Regan was able to achieve a settlement on the family’s behalf.
Regan is committed to his clients, despite any obstacles he may face. He is currently working on the case of a man who was severely burned when he was 12 as a result of a defective smoke detector and subsequent fire. The incident burned more than 70 percent of his body, and he lost both legs.
Regan took this case to the Maryland Court of Appeals three separate times. The trial is set to begin in September 2011. The man has now graduated from college and has a family of his own.
“I still remember the day that his father retained me,” Regan says. “This case has taken 13 years to get to trial, but this man is a very deserving client. Each time that we suffered a setback, we took the case to the appeals court and we won.”
Regan finds that each case is unique with its own challenges.
“Nothing is repetitive,” he says. “Even though I have investigated hundreds of medical malpractice cases, no two of them are alike. You are constantly learning new information, new ways of helping clients, new ways of trying cases, and new ways of presenting evidence.”
Being a trial lawyer is not a 9 to 5 job, Regan says.
“If you are not prepared, you are not going to do well. If you are not prepared, you are letting your clients down,” Regan says. “At the end of the day, I want to make sure that my client is happy, and that we have done everything we can to be as successful as possible for them.”
Regan earned his JD from the Columbus School of Law at the Catholic University of America in 1980.
A Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, Regan received the “Trial Lawyer of the Year” award from the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan Washington, D.C. He currently serves on the Board of Governors of the American Association for Justice.
Regan contributes much of his time and resources to numerous civic and charitable organizations. He volunteered with Trial Lawyers Care representing families who lost loved ones in the September 11 tragedies. His firm sponsors annual charity events and gives away free bike helmets to needy children, in addition to other projects.
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Ashley Cisneros is a co-founder of Chatter Buzz Media, an Orlando Internet marketing firm that helps companies and organizations engage with their target markets through inbound marketing via the Internet. Chatter Buzz Media, which won the Social Madness competition for the Orlando small business market, is a full-service digital marketing firm specializing in website design, search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing and content creation. Prior to founding Chatter Buzz, Ashley worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine editor, technical writer, marketing manager, public relations practitioner and freelance journalist. To see Ashley’s content writing, visit www.ashleycisneros.com. You can also reach Ashley on her Google profile.