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304.347.4231 Tel
304.345.0260 Fx

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Sonya Springsteen

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Jeff Wakefield brings 36 years of experience to Flaherty and serves as our General Counsel. His diverse practice includes business and commercial litigation, insurance coverage defense and bad faith, professional liability and class action cases. He also has extensive appellate experience having briefed and argued numerous matters before the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals and the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

What makes Jeff stand out? “As a result of my extensive experience in a wide variety of litigation, trials and appellate cases, I can analyze cases from a factual development standpoint, but also recognize and develop sophisticated legal issues.”

The majority of Jeff’s work today centers on sophisticated business/commercial clients in high exposure cases. Some of his clients include a major university, a coal equipment company and large insurance carriers. He is committed to his clients and dedicated to achieving a positive outcome – as he did in each of these cases – recovering liquidated damages from a departing Division IA football coach, allowing a multi-million dollar media rights contract to remain in place and saving an insurance company millions of dollars in successfully resisting a rate challenge.

“Listening to clients is the most important thing a lawyer can do. From listening, you learn about the client’s needs and expectations. Only then can you provide truly adequate representation.”

Outside of the practice of law, Jeff seeks out activities which allow him to grow personally and unwind from the stress of practice. He enjoys skiing, biking, golf and travel.

Practice Concentrations:

  • Commercial Litigation
  • Civil Litigation
  • Personal Injury
  • Mass Tort
  • Insurance Coverage
  • Product Liability
  • Insurance Bad Faith

Education:

  • J.D., West Virginia University College of Law (1981)
  • B.A., Magna Cum Laude, Political Science, West Virginia University (1977)

Court Admissions:

  • United States Supreme Court
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia
  • United States Court of Appeals Fourth Circuit
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of West Virginia
  • Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia

Reported Decisions State & Federal District Court Cases:

  • Bluestone Indus., Inc. v. Keneda, No. 12-1337, 2013 W. Va. LEXIS 1148 (W. Va. Oct. 24, 2013) (per curiam)
  • Strawn v. AT&T Mobility, Inc., _____ F.Supp2d _____, 2009, WL1544333 (S.D. W.Va. 2009)
  • Osborne v. King, 570 F.Supp.2d 839 S.D. W.Va. (2008)
  • West Virginia University Board of Governors v. Rodriguez, 543 F.Supp.2d 526 (N.D. W.Va. 2008)
  • Rashid v. Tarakji, ___ S.E.2d ____, 2008, WL 486677 (WV, November 5, 2008)
  • Messer v. Hannah, 228 W.Va. 553, 668 SE.2d 182 (2008)
  • Stand Energy Corp. v. Columbia Gas Transmission Corp., 521 F.Supp.2d 537 (S.D. W.Va. 2007)
  • Strawn v. AT&T Mobility, Inc., 513 F.Supp.2d 599 (S.D. W.Va. 2007)
  • State & County Mutual Fire Insurance Co. v. Young, 490 F.Supp.2d 741 (N.D. W.Va. 2007)
  • Philips v. Larry’s Drive-In Pharmacy, Inc., 220 W.Va. 484, 647 S.E.2d 920 (2007)
  • Kominar v. Health Management Associates of West Virginia, Inc., 220 W.Va. 542, 648 S.E.2d 48 (2007)
  • State ex rel. Hamrick v. Stucky, 220 W.Va. 180, 640 S.E.2d 243 (2006)
  • State ex rel. Hamrick v. Stuckey, 2006 WL 3455069 (W.Va. 2006)
  • Stand Energy Corp. v. Columbia Gas Transmission Corp., 380 F.Supp.2d 748 (S.D. W.Va. 2005)
  • Stand Energy Corp. v. Columbia Gas transmission Corp., 373 F.Supp.2d 631 (S.D. W.Va. 2005)
  • Branch Bank & Trust v. Engine Components, Inc., 394 F.Supp.2d 859 (S.D. W.Va. 2005)
  • Columbia Casualty Co. v Westfield Insurance Co., 217 W.Va. 250, 617 S.E.2d 797 (2005)
  • Calhoun v Traylor, 218 W.Va. 154, 624 S.E.2d 501 (2005)
  • State ex rel. Medical Assurance of West Virginia, Inc. v Recht, 213 W.Va. 457, 583 S.E.2d 80 (2003)
  • Hawkins v. Ford Motor Co., 211 W.Va. 487 566 S.E.2d 624 (2002)
  • Bradshaw v. Soulsby, 210 W.Va. 682, 558 S.E.2d 681 (2001)
  • Smith v. Animal Urgent Care, Inc., 208 W.Va. 664, 542 S.E.2d 827 (2000)
  • Bower v. Westinghouse Elec. Corp., 206 W.Va. 133, 522 S.E.2d 424 (1999)
  • DeVane v. Kennedy, 205 W.Va. 519, 519 S.E.2d 622 (1999)
  • Gamblin v. Ford Motor Co., 204 W.Va. 419, 513 S.E.2d 467 (1998)
  • Shiel v. Ryu, 203 W.Va. 40, 506 S.E.2d 77 (1998)
  • Callow v. Jacob, 201 W.Va. 665, 500 S.E.2d 290 (1997)
  • State ex rel. Mitchem v. Kirkpatrick, 199 W.Va. 501, 485 S.E.2d 445 (1997)
  • McGraw v. St. Joseph’s Hospital, 200 W.Va. 114, 488 S.E.2d 389 (1997)
  • State ex rel. Blankenship v. Richardson, 196 W.Va. 726, 474 S.E.2d 906 (1996)
  • Raines v. White, 195 W.Va. 266, 465 S.E.2d 266 (1995)
  • Dunn v. Kanawha County Board of Education, 194 W.Va. 40, 459 S.E.2d 151 (1995)
  • Helmick v. Jones, 192 W.Va. 317, 452 S.E.2d 408 (1994)
  • Whitlow v. Board of Education of Kanawha County, 190 W.Va. 223, 438 S.E.2d 15 (1993)
  • Henderson v. Meredith Lumber Co., Inc., 190 W.Va. 292, 438 S.E.2d 324 (1993)
  • State ex rel. Starr v. Halbritter, 183 W.Va. 350, 395 S.E.2d 773 (1990)
  • Nutter v. Maynard, 183 W.Va. 247, 395 S.E.2d 491 (1990)
  • Capital Fuels, Inc. v. Clark Equipment Co., 176 W.Va. 277, 342 S.E.2d 245 (1986)
  • Perry v. Milton, 171 W.Va. 397, 299 S.E.2d 8 (1982)
  • Star Furniture Co. v. Pulaski Furniture Co., 171 W.Va. 79, 297 S.E.2d 854 (1982)
  • Wise v. Travelers Indemnity Co., 192 F.Supp.2d 506 (N.D.W.Va. 2002)
  • Young v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 169 F.R.D. 72 (S.D.W.Va. 1996)
  • Clark v. Milam, 830 F.Supp. 316 (S.D.W.Va. 1993)
  • Crawford v. Hatcher, 804 F.Supp. 834 (S.D.W.Va. 1992)

Federal Appellate Decisions:

  • Palisades Collections LLC v. Shorts, 552 F.3d 327 (4th Cir. 2008)
  • Strawn v. AT&T Mobility LLC, 530 F.3d 293 (4th Cir. 2008)
  • Columbia Casualty Co. v Westfield Insurance Co., 416 F.3d 301 (4th Cir. 2005)
  • Gray v. Farley, 13 Fd.3d 142 (4th Cir. 1993)
  • Giancola v. State of West Virginia Dept. of Public Safety, 830 Fd.2d 547 (4th Cir. 1987)

Professional Involvement:

  • Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia
  • American Bar Association
  • West Virginia State Bar Association, Member

Awards & Honors:

  • AV Preeminent® Peer-Review Rated by Martindale-Hubble®
  • Listed, Chambers USA (Litigation: General Commercial), 2010-Present
  • Listed, The Best Lawyers in America©, 2010 – Present
    • 2017 – Lawyer of the Year – Charleston, WV – Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants
    • 2015 – Lawyer of the Year – Charleston, WV – Insurance Law
    • 2014 – Lawyer of the Year – Charleston, WV – Bet-the-Company Litigation
  • Listed, West Virginia Super Lawyers, 2007 – Present

Teaching & Lecturing:

  • Contracts Between “Friendlys”: Covering the Risk and Protecting the Business Relationship Through Indemnification and Insuring Agreements, Presentation, 33rd Eastern Mineral Law Foundation Conference – EMLF, Lexington, KY (2008)
  • Lecturer, Bad Faith Update, Insurance Law, West Virginia Continuing Legal Education (2002)

Writings & Publications:

  • A Basic Guide to Litigating Claims Under 42 U.S.C. § 1983, Defense Trial Counsel of WV (1992)
  • Successful Use of the Statute of Limitations Defense in Medical Malpractice Cases Under the Discovery Rule, Defense Trial Counsel of WV (1984)
  • Problems Associated With the Management of Solid Waste: Is There a Solution in the Offing, 83 W.Va. L.Rev. 131 (1980)