Attorney Profile

Professional Experience

Mr. Murphy has been active as a trial lawyer in the greater Boston area since 1985. He practices in the areas of personal injury, aviation defense, commercial litigation, and has extensive experience as a mediator and arbitrator. He has briefed and argued matters at every level of state and federal courts except the United States Supreme Court where he is admitted to practice.

With more than twenty-five years experience, Tom has tried thirty-plus cases to verdict in state and federal courts – on behalf of plaintiffs and defendants – in Massachusetts and elsewhere. Firm clients include individuals as well as companies. A former Peace Corps volunteer, Tom is fluent in Spanish and has represented many Spanish-speaking clients in their native language.

Mr. Murphy has negotiated significant settlements for hundreds of personal injury cases from all kinds of situations – car accidents, boat accidents, defective machines and other products, landlord-tenant disputes, dog bites, obstacle courses, carnival rides, high voltage power lines, fires of different types and sources, construction sites, elevator maintenance, car rental contracts, hydraulic liftgates, industrial equipment of all kinds, loading docks, fence rollers, road and intersection design, alcohol-fueled altercations – and many more. The cases involved injuries from broken bones to scaring to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and death.

Since 2000, Tom has also defended a number of claims against aviation-related companies and brought subrogation claims on their behalf in all sorts of General Aviation and Airline cases. The Aviation defense practice includes ramp-level incidents, in-flight passenger, baggage, and other bodily injury or delay claims, as well as de-icing and landing scenarios. Tom is versed in cases brought under the Montreal Convention as well as the common law in various states.

Representative Matters

  1. As trial counsel in 1998 he secured the largest plaintiff’s verdict (at the time) in Montgomery County, Ohio, a case affirmed by a federal Court of Appeals which set a new standard under Ohio’s settlement statute. Conte v. Dayton Power & Light Co., et al (6th Circuit 2000).
  2. In 2002 Tom was listed by Massachusetts Lawyers’ Weekly as having one of the biggest defense verdicts of the year. Patricia Zackular v. Fun Services, Inc. (Middlesex Superior Court 2001)
  3. As defense counsel Tom obtained summary judgment in a case with a major injury which the Massachusetts high court affirmed, and in so doing clarified the duty of care of property owners. Humphrey v. Byron (MA Supreme Judicial Court 2006).
  4. In 2010 he obtained summary judgment based on the loaned servant doctrine which the First Circuit affirmed. Roberts v. Delta Air Lines, Inc. (1st Circuit 2010).

–     Commonwealth of Massachusetts
–     United States District Court, District of Massachusetts
–     Various Jurisdictions pro hac vice
–     United States Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit
–     United States Court of Appeals, First Circuit
–     United States Supreme Court

Recognitions & Professional Achievements
–     Scally, Jason M., and Greeley, Jeanne. “The ‘Biggest’ Defense Wins of the Year: Company Wins Summary Judgment on ‘Obvious Danger’.” Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly [Boston] 17 June 2002: page 30 M.L.W. 5152.
–     “The ‘Biggest’ Defense Wins of the Year: Catino, PPA v. Meservey’s Harding Rock Café, Inc. et al.” Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly [Boston] 21 June 2004: Section B.

–     New England School of Law, J.D., 1985
–     University of New Mexico, A.B., 1978

Professional Affiliations
–     American Board of Trial Advocates
–     Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys
      Chair, Amicus Committee

–     Essex County Bar Association
–     Salem Bar Association
–     Social Law Library, Proprietor Member
–     Massachusetts Historical Society

Volunteer Work
–     Essex Superior Court, Conciliator
–     Harvard Law School, Trial Practice Seminar Advisor
–     American Association for Justice, Mock Trial Competition Judge
–     Faculty, Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE)
–     Ipswich High School Mock Trial Team, Founder & Coach
–     Ipswich Rotary Club, Member and Community Volunteer
–     Ipswich Music, Art & Drama Association, Inc., Member & Community Volunteer
–     Chair, MATA Amicus Committee

Presentations, Publications & News Reports
Attorney Murphy and some of his cases have been featured in the following news articles:
–     Hills, Wes. “Injured Worker Awarded $3.5 Million.” Dayton Daily News 7 March 1998.
–     “Worker contacts high voltage power line: Failure to de-energize wires: Loss of fingers and toes: Verdict.” Law Reporter [ Washington, D.C.] 42:1 (Feb. 1999): 30.
–     Berkman, Eric T. “When Should Practitioners Take On Out-of-State Cases” Geographical Nuances, Local Counsel Key.” Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly [Boston] 27 April 1998, p. 26 M.L.W. 2020.
–     Qavanaugh, Hugh. “Man Hurt By High Voltage Wire gets $3.5M Verdict.” OhioLawyers Weekly 6 Nov. 2000: p. 4 O.L.W. 2199.
–     Berkman, Eric T. “Commercial landlord not liable for injuries from defective stairway: Tenant’s employee sued after falling.” Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly[Boston] 31, July 2006: p. 1 + 30.

The following are cases Attorney Murphy has handled that were reported in theMassachusetts Lawyers Weekly “Verdicts & Settlements” section:
–     “Motor Vehicle Negligence – Intersection Collision – Multiple Traumas.” 13 Sept. 1999: p. 28 M.L.W. 3027.
–     “Fabric Wind-Up Machine – Nip Point.” 13 Sept. 1999: p. 28 M.L.W. 3027.
–     “Duty to Warn – Obvious Danger.” 17 Dec. 2001: p.30 M.L.W. 3715.
–     “Patron Killed In Late-Night Brawl After Leaving Bar.” 10 Nov. 2003: p.32 M.L.W. 569.
–     “Airline Seeks Contribution from Company for $1M Settlement.” 15 Aug. 2005: p.33 M.L.W. 2723.
–     “Flight Attendant Sues Airline After Falling: Summary Judgment.” 6 April 2009: p.37 M.L.W. 1349.
–     “Trucker Injures Shoulder Unfolding Hydraulic Lift: $450,000 Settlement.” 4 Oct. 2010: 39:7.
–     “Donut Shop Employee Hurt Closing Gate on Property: $180,000 Settlement.” 11 Oct. 2010: p.39 M.L.W. 293.

Attorney Murphy has authored or co-authored the following:
–     Murphy, Thomas R. “Deposition Conduct: Where’s the Line Between Vigorous Advocacy and Uncivil Behavior?” Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association [Boston] 10:2 (Feb. 2001).
–     Murphy, Thomas R. “Constitutional Immunity of Clerics.” Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association [Boston] 12:1 (Sept. 2002).
–     Murphy, Thomas R. “’Humphrey’ and the commercial landlord’s duty of care.” Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys [Boston] (Spring 2007).
–     Murphy, Thomas R. and Jones, Patrick T. and DeLello, Robert A. “MATA Amicus Brief: Richard Pleva v. P&F Brothers Industrial Corp.” (March 2006).

Attorney Murphy has presented at the following legal seminars:
–     “Litigating in Style: The Pit Bull Approach with the Teddy Bear Attitude.” 20 June 2000: Massachusetts Bar Continuing Legal Education Program.
–     “The Defense of Civil Lawsuits: The Defense Lawyer in the Pre-litigation Stage and Responsive Pleadings.” 19 Sept. 2000: Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education Seminar.
–     “Staying Professional in the Practice: Tips & Traps.” 6 June 2001: Massachusetts Bar Continuing Legal Education Program.
–     “Recent Developments in Civil Litigation: ‘Would You Step Outside of the Car, Please’ – Proving and Disproving Intoxication.” 14 May 2004: Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association Seminar.
–     “Introducing and Excluding Evidence at Trial: The Mechanics of Offering or Opposing the Introduction of Evidence.” 6 May 2009 and 27 April 2010 and 21 March 2011: Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education Seminar.