For me, the courtroom is the place where David really can stand up to Goliath.
My clients, individuals and their families, have gone up against the largest health systems, the biggest insurance companies, the most bad-ass chemical company, the richest pharmaceutical company, and even the United States government.
After college, I started as a foreign correspondent and then an investigative journalist. For each article, I would conduct interviews and often review reams of documents. Often, my stories were about those in powerful positions who had misused those positions. Those skills gave me a taste for cross-examination.
For my final project as a journalist, I wrote an historical account of the Nazi war crimes trials in Germany, told through the story of one of the last major Nazi figures to stand trial. (For more on that, here is a write up on the book.) I attended the trial in Stuttgart, Germany and listened to the stories of Holocaust survivors who testified to the crimes the Nazi officer had committed. I saw just how much the law matters, how the law really is a means to a measure of justice.
When my book manuscript was completed and off to the publisher, I turned to the law myself. I found a way to channel my experiences and skills – writing, investigating, questioning, challenging – so that I, too, could help people achieve a measure of justice.
The cases I take often involve complex issues of medicine and science. A medical procedure that went bad. A devastating medication error that caused a brain or spinal cord injury. A toxic exposure that caused cancer. A product or drug that was defective and caused a serious loss or permanent injury. Of course, the goal is to obtain maximum compensation for the serious wrongs my clients have suffered. We have won millions of dollars in jury verdicts and have obtained millions more in settlements to achieve that goal. The goal also has to be to help the client achieve a measure of justice, to restore dignity and respect.
From the first meeting I have with a new client until the moment that person’s case is completely resolved, I always try to remember the road that led me to where I am and the reasons I do what I do.
Achievements & Case Highlights:
- A multi-million dollar settlement on behalf of a groups of individuals who are part of a residential brain tumor cluster in Northern Illinois. The case involved allegations of cancer-causing chemical exposure from historic plant operations and dumping. In a related matter, Mr. Freiwald also negotiated a multi-million dollar settlement on behalf of a class of residents in the community who required monitoring for brain tumors. As a result of the monitoring program that followed, two former residents were diagnosed with early-stage brain tumors.
- A $2 million verdict in conservative Montgomery County, PA in a case involving a 37-year-old man who was misdiagnosed in the ER of Pottstown Memorial Medical Center. The ER physician was found negligent for failing to diagnose pericarditis, a heart condition that can be life threatening if not treated in a timely manner.
- A $4.5 million jury verdict in a case where the surgeon operated on the wrong kidney leading to the patient’s death.
- A multi-million settlement on behalf of a woman whose Ob-Gyn failed to diagnose and treat her hyperthyroidism. The woman died during an emergency delivery and her baby was profoundly brain injured.
- A $6.33 million jury verdict on behalf of the parents of a 13-month old baby whose pediatrician failed to make timely diagnosis of bacterial meningitis.
- A $6.4 million jury verdict on behalf of parents of a 19-year old boy who died of liver failure after his neurologist failed to perform routine and required blood tests after prescribing Depakote, an anti-seizure medication.
- A $4 million jury verdict on behalf of a 36-year old mother of three who died of a massive pulmonary embolism following routine knee surgery.
- A multi-million dollar settlement on behalf of a woman who suffered a severe, allergic reaction to an iodine-based contrast dye used during an imaging study. The patient had disclosed her allergy in the “patient information” form, but the physician had failed to review the record. The patient died because the office was not equipped to handle the emergency.
- A multi-million dollar settlement on behalf of a teenage boy whose physicians failed to diagnose a volvulus – a twisted bowel – leading to his requiring multi-organ transplants.
- Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association, Member
- American Board of Trial Advocates, Member
- Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Member
- Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association, member
- Philadelphia Bar Association, Member
- Department of Veterans Affairs Accredited Attorney
- Mr. Freiwald has an AV rating from Martindale Hubbell, the organization’s highest rating.
- His peers have repeatedly recognized Mr. Freiwald as a “Pennsylvania Super Lawyer.”
- Mr. Freiwald is a Fellow of the American Academy of Trial Counsel.
- Law Dragon Publications has named Mr. Freiwald to its list of the 500 leading Plaintiff’s lawyers in America.
Contact me directly at email@example.com
Diane Danois is an attorney at Freiwald Law, P.C., a nationally-recognized law firm with its corporate office located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The firm represents clients, who have been catastrophically injured in complex cases involving science, medicine and law.
Diane Danois didn’t become a lawyer the “normal” way. Instead of going from college to law school, Diane took the scenic route. After college, she became a litigation paralegal until her employers encouraged her to get a law degree. Then, instead of quitting and going to law school during the day and sleeping at night, Diane continued to work as a paralegal during the day and attended classes at night.
A natural listener with a remarkable depth of life experience and courtroom knowledge, Diane relishes the challenges that can make all the difference in the outcome of a case. What she loves most of all: earning the trust and confidence of her clients and then making sure that person and that family have all the support they need through what sometimes feels like a strange and nerve-wracking process.
Diane’s heart connects to the lives of her clients; she knows their concerns and she feels what they feel. Always genuine in the relationships she builds, she remembers every face and every story of all of her clients. One of the most powerful moments in Diane’s life happened at the deathbed of a client who was dying of breast cancer. These are the experiences that give Diane the strength to give so much to her clients.
Achievements & Case Highlights:
- Assisted in then-Pennsylvania record $33.1 million verdict awarded to a woman, who suffered a nine-month delay in diagnosis of breast cancer when her mammography report was erroneously filed prior to her doctor notifying her of suspicious findings requiring immediate follow up.
- Assisted in a $6.6 million verdict awarded to the parents of an infant who died following failure to diagnose a twisted bowel.
- Assisted in then-Pennsylvania record $49 million verdict awarded in a medical-malpractice claim relating to severe brain damage caused to 23-year old man, when an endotracheal tube used to help him breathe was inserted improperly. The tube dislodged and cut off his oxygen supply. Monitor alarms sounded but it took a nurse six minutes to respond, resulting in brain damage.
- Assisted in $3 million verdict awarded to a woman relating to the delay in diagnosis of her breast cancer.
- Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association
- Pennsylvania Bar Association
- Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association
- Philadelphia Bar Association
- Florida Supreme Court Certified Family Law Mediator and Qualified Parenting Coordinator
- Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation
- Co-Chair, Philadelphia Race for the Cure, 2002 and 2003
- President, Philadelphia Affiliate Board of Directors, 2003 and 2004
- Member, Philadelphia Affiliate Board of Directors, 2001-2004
- Member, Miami/Fort Lauderdale Affiliate Board of Directors, 2012-2014
- Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS)
- Member, HIMSS Task Force for Personal Health Records (2006)
- Member, HIMSS Task Force for Electronic Health Record Vendors (2006)
- Continuing Legal Education
Pennsylvania Bar Institute
Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association
Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association
- Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation – National
Lecturing on volunteer retention methodologies and authored/produced A Casting Call, a unique program designed to address over 100 affiliates nationwide regarding volunteerism.
- Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation – Philadelphia Affiliate
- American Marketing Association
Addressing marketing challenges in non-profit organizations and corporate America.
- Hitachi Data Systems
- WebTech: Healthcare Technology Designed to Improve and Accelerate Patient Care and Business e-Discovery: A Litigation-Ready Perspective
Diane Danois writes routinely for the Huffington Post! You can find her articles here.