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Getting a just settlement for our clients is always our goal. There is a huge sense of relief when we can accomplish what we set out to do on behalf of our clients. We are talking about real people facing real challenges. For them, this may be one of the most stressful times in their life. Helping them is immensely gratifying.
Michael R. Barry has joined Weitz & Luxenberg’s experienced Mesothelioma and Asbestos Practice Group litigation unit in the firm’s New Jersey office. “I’m excited to be given this opportunity to work for Weitz & Luxenberg,” Mr. Barry says. “We’re at the forefront of mesothelioma and asbestos litigation across the nation and our reputation for standing up for individuals is unparalleled.”
Weitz & Luxenberg feels equally privileged Mr. Barry joined our team of asbestos and mesothelioma attorneys. We recognize dedication and a drive for excellence when we see it.
Mr. Barry brings nearly two decades of trial and investigative experience to Weitz & Luxenberg. In addition, Mr. Barry has dedicated his career to helping the families of other deadly crimes, including murder.
“I’ve always wanted to fight on behalf of people who have been wronged,” Mr. Barry explains. “In my previous positions, I stood up for people who had been victimized through the crimes others committed.
“In the case of asbestos and mesothelioma, there is no question some companies victimized the people who worked with and around their asbestos products. When these companies exposed people to asbestos, they poisoned them.
“Our clients who come to us with mesothelioma were made sick by asbestos. The companies that subjected our clients to asbestos ruined their lives and damaged their families,” Mr. Barry says.
Like his colleagues at Weitz & Luxenberg, a desire for justice and fairness motivates Mr. Barry. We understand his commitment to fighting on behalf of people who have been wronged because we feel the same way.
Over 30 years ago, we founded this firm on behalf of victims of asbestos exposure. Like Mr. Barry, we have witnessed firsthand what mesothelioma looks like.
“Mesothelioma is a very aggressive, specific type of cancer,” Mr. Barry points out. “It can advance quickly.
“When a person with mesothelioma contacts us, meeting with him or her as soon as possible is important. We want to make sure our clients tell us everything they can about their life, their history, their health, and their exposure to asbestos.
Clients and their families are asked to remember events and details from 30, 40, or 50 years ago, even as far back as the 1950s. We strive to learn about our client in our first meeting and make sure no stone is left unturned.”
What Mr. Barry and the team at W&L strive to convey is “I’m here for you. You don’t have to figure everything out. It’s my job to fight for you and I will do everything I can to help you.”
“After an initial meeting, we hope our clients are able to relax and spend time with their families, do whatever they want to do. We hope they will trust Weitz & Luxenberg to act in their best interests and take all the legal steps necessary to achieve a just resolution,” summarizes Mr. Barry.
At Weitz & Luxenberg, settlement is what we strive for. What that means for our clients is that they receive compensation sooner. Trials can be lengthy and expensive. However, when a just settlement can’t be reached, W&L is well-prepared to go to trial.
“I love trial work and believe it’s something I’m very good at,” Mr. Barry says. “It’s also something I have a lot of experience doing.
Mr. Barry explains, “Trial work isn’t just about standing in a courtroom, questioning witnesses, and arguing to a judge or jury. Before we get to court, there are many, many hours of trial preparation, including a lot of investigative work.
Ironic as it sounds, “The ultimate goal of trial preparation is to be so prepared to go to trial that you don’t have to,” Mr. Barry says. “You want the defendants to know you have the experience to stand up to them in a courtroom and that you are fully prepared to fight them in court.
Ultimately, you want defendants to choose to settle out of court rather than risk expensive court proceedings and a huge jury verdict against them.”
For nearly 19 years, Mr. Barry served in the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office. He held several positions over the years, each with increasing responsibility.
Primarily, he was a trial attorney and a supervisor. One of his favorite responsibilities, Mr. Barry said, was trying cases– in fact, he has tried thousands of cases.
In his highest management-level position, Mr. Barry was deputy district attorney of the office’s Pretrial Division. He oversaw the work of 100+ attorneys and staff members and supervising the Charging, Pretrial, and Traffic Units of the Pretrial Division as well as the Diversion Courts.
In an earlier position, Mr. Barry served as bureau chief of the Central Division Bureau. Besides supervising 15 attorneys, he oversaw the prosecution of most non-homicidal crimes in North Philadelphia and Center City.
Earlier, as an attorney in the Homicide Unit, Mr. Barry managed and brought to conclusion approximately 150 complex homicide matters. He also prosecuted roughly 60 other major jury trials.
In addition, he negotiated guilty plea agreements and interviewed expert witnesses specializing in forensic pathology, DNA analysis, accident investigation, and forensic psychology.
In his first two positions at the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office, Mr. Barry served as a Trial Division attorney and Appellate Unit attorney. He tried over 100 major trial matters and writing appellate briefs.
In Mr. Barry’s first position after receiving his J.D., he was an associate attorney. He assisted with trial preparation in plaintiff products liability and premises liability litigation.
Mr. Barry is licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania and the Third Circuit of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
He earned his J.D. from Temple University’s Beasley School of Law in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and his B.A. from the University of Scranton in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
Outside of work, Mr. Barry enjoys spending time with his family, including his two young children, a son and a daughter. In addition, he loves film and is an avid fan of the basketball team the Philadelphia 76ers.
Michael R. Barry will be happy to review your case.