Airplane Crashes


An Excellent Reputation
Built On Success
In The Courtroom

Nothing is more important than recovery and compensation for your loved one after a severe injury. 

Plane Crashes Deserve Compensation For The Victims

The trial law firm of is a pioneer in the field of aviation disaster litigation, having obtained the first of many jury verdicts in an airplane crash case in 1967. Since then, we have earned a national reputation for excellence in aviation law and throughout our personal injury practice. We focus on recovering damages for our clients and their family members in cases of catastrophic injury and wrongful death. We handle aviation crashes and aviation fires involving commercial jetliners, general aviation aircraft and helicopters.

The effective practice of aviation law requires extensive knowledge and experience with complex legal issues and engineering principles, including jurisdiction and venue, international law, treaties and agreements affecting damages, statutes of repose, Federal Aviation and National Transportation Safety Board procedures and investigations, aircraft and component part manufacturer certification, manufacturing processes, and manufacturer record keeping practices and procedures.

Our attorneys have the experience and the resources to handle complex and expensive airplane accident cases against domestic and foreign aircraft and component manufacturers, such as Boeing, Airbus, Cessna, McDonnell Douglas, Piper, Beech, Learjet, GE, Rolls Royce, Pratt & Whitney, and other airplane and aviation part manufacturers. We have access to experts in aeronautics, aircraft mechanics, avionics, systems analysis, aircraft accident reconstruction, pilot and flight training, human factors, aircraft design, airframe structure, electrical systems, hydraulic systems, air traffic control procedures, and weather.

Examples of successful aviation litigation cases that our attorneys have tried include:

  • Defective aircraft design, structural failure and defective parts cases, such as those involving fuel pumps, carburetors, autopilot systems, pilot seat pedestals, magnetos, cockpit door locks allowing intruder into cockpit, defective flight control systems, stabilizing bars, torsion coupling, defective approach plates (maps) and mapping systems
  • Human factors such as pilot error and air traffic controller negligence

We accept only a small number of airplane crash cases each year, and we devote personal attention and the strength of our experience and resources to each. If you have lost a loved one in a plane crash, please contact our law offices today for skilled and knowledgeable legal counsel.

See the other types of motor vehicle accident cases our personal injury attorneys represent.

Airplane Accidents & Injuries Information Center

Visit our Winning Records page to see more information on the Airplane Crash cases we have settled or brought to verdict.

$12.5 million verdict, including $10.5 million punitive damages. Wrongful death and personal injury arising from a small airplane crash due to a defectively manufactured magneto on one engine of a twin engine aircraft.

$11.6 million verdict for crash of a DC-9 jet aircraft. Crash was due to a defective aeronautical navigational chart.

$3 million settlement against manufacturer of a Cessna single engine airplane. Pilot is paraplegic due to defectively designed seat.

$1 million settlement against the manufacturers of a single engine airplane and fuel injector for the wrongful death of the pilot during a crash.


Jeffrey R. Smith

Jeffrey R. Smith

Managing Partner

Robert B. Waldsmith

Robert J. Waldsmith

Partner, 1999

William B. Smith

William B. Smith

Partner, 1978

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Vehicle Accidents

There are two things to establish in any motor vehicle accident case: the cause of the accident (fault) and the full cost of the injuries and losses. As we prepare your case, we will investigate both of these.


Abuse & Molestation

 Priests, ministers, church officials and workers, coaches, teachers, day care workers, park rangers, and other trusted adults who sexually molest children, ruin lives and cause irreparable psychological damage.


& Serious Injuries

People suffering from a brain injury, spinal cord injury or other severe injury will require extensive medical treatment, rehabilitative therapy and other long-term care.



Claims related to sports and recreation injuries can be complicated. These cases often include issues involving waivers and the “assumption of risk” defense.


& Spine Injuries

When you or a loved one suffers a traumatic brain injury (TBI), life changes dramatically. Even mild TBIs can lead to years of recovery and rehabilitation.


Practice areas

The personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Abramson Smith Waldsmith LLP have more than 100 years of combined experience guiding clients through the legal process.

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(415) 421-7995