Baltimore, MD (Law Firm Newswire) March 3, 2015 - Two of the nation’s leading trial lawyers today have launched a new firm, built around cutting-edge research, designed to give real people an edge in court. “It’s about telling their stories more effectively and making sure they are truly heard by jurors,” said co-founder, Christopher Stombaugh. “We can use innovative legal research to help them find justice at a difficult time in their life.”
Named Stombaugh, Smith & Co., the new firm will be a joint venture of Smith, Gildea & Schmidt, LLC and blend the talents of Wisconsin trial thought leader Chris Stombaugh with one of Maryland’s leading litigators, Michael Paul Smith. The alliance will also include Next Research, LLC, (NR), which will use cognitive, social, and behavioral research to create predictive models and personalized trial strategies, as well as Next Trial Innovation, LLC, (NTI) which will train and educate trial lawyers in how to use this advanced research. Stombaugh, Smith & Co. LLC (SS&C) will apply these methods into trial, negotiation and legal consulting services.
“We will teach lawyers how to bring all of the elements together while keeping the focus on the people they are trying to help,” said Stombaugh. “Through the research we will better understand what jurors ‘hear’ at critical points, so we can reach them on a more engaging, one-to-one level and tell them more.”
Both Stombaugh and Smith have been highly successful in difficult cases in difficult times drawing the interest of other trial lawyers nationwide. Their successes have helped countless plaintiffs pursue justice when it’s become increasingly difficult to take a single case to court.
Stombaugh has pioneered many of the cognitive neuroscience techniques the consortium will focus on. As a trial lawyer, Stombaugh has obtained several record jury verdicts, often seven and eight figure, in a variety of diverse cases. The Wisconsin native’s professional passion is to allow deserving people to have their stories be heard by real juries in contemporary courtrooms across America.
A Drake University Law School honors graduate, and faculty member at the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College in Wyoming, Stombaugh was, until recently, a partner at the Keenan Law Firm in Atlanta, Georgia. Stombaugh has earned “Super Lawyer” ratings from Thompson Reuters since 2010, and has a perfect 10/10 rating from the Seattle-based Avvo legal rating service. His practice has concentrated on the areas of personal injury, wrongful death, product liability and medical negligence.
Co-founder, Michael Paul Smith, has been an active trial lawyer and member of the Maryland bar since 1992. His practice has concentrated on areas of complex civil litigation, including personal injury, product liability, medical malpractice, and business litigation as well as contract work. “Our work can mean the difference between winning and losing a case or winning and winning big,” said Smith. “By understanding what motivates decision making, our clients have a better chance of overcoming prejudice as well as being heard and believed in court.”
Smith has obtained tens of millions of dollars in settlements and awards for his clients during his career and has won praises from colleagues, opposing counsel and judges. He has earned an AV Preeminent (peer review) rating with Martindale Hubble and has been recognized as one of America’s “Legal Elite” by Smart CEO magazine.
Stombaugh, Smith, & Co is headquartered in Towson, Maryland and expects to open offices in the Midwest and on the west coast as well. Additional information about the firm can be found at StombaughSmith.com.
Editor’s note: Michael Paul Smith is not leaving his current practice with Smith, Gildea, and Schmidt, but will expand his role to include Stombaugh, Smith & Co.
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(On behalf of Stombaugh, Smith & Co.)