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Paul Hofmann

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Paul Hofmann

Paul Hofmann

  • President
  • Hofmann & Schweitzer
  • 360 W. 31st Street Suite #1506
    New York, NY 10001
  • 2124658840
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With over 30 years experience in tort litigation, Paul T. Hofmann, partner with the law firm of Hofmann & Schweitzer, stands tall as a champion for victims whose lives are forever changed. He has resolved hundreds of personal injury and wrongful death suits, through settlements and scores of jury verdicts. He has gotten over a hundred million dollars in recoveries for his clients which places him in an elite group of multi-million dollar advocates.

Paul specializes in personal injury matters, with special emphasis on maritime(Jones Act and Longshore Harbor Workers), railroad (F.E.L.A.) and construction worker tort claims.

Perseverance and determination are the firm's guiding principles. As managing partner, Paul insists that the assigned attorney personally visit the client's accident site to develop an understanding of why the event happened. Further, attorneys are required to return any client's call within 24 hours. Existing clients and potential clients are often surprised to get phone calls and email replies from Paul after working hours and on weekends. Personal service sets Paul and the firm apart from many other plaintiffs firms. Each client is entitled to be treated as if his/her claim is the only one that matters. "Our mission is to maximize each client's recovery by thorough research, preparation and creative presentation."

Paul's passion for representing working men and women is not only recognized by his clients but also by his peers who voted and selected him for inclusion as a New York Super Lawyer since 2006 to the present.

About the Martindale-Hubbard AV Preeminent Status

Paul T. Hofmann has been counsel representing the party making new, and important additions to the body of maritime, construction and railroad law. The extent of his experience and knowledge is exemplified in the myriad of cases he has handled which have resulted in reported decisions. Below is a non-exclusive list of many of the major cases he has handled which resulted in reported decisions.  These decisions show the nature of the the diversity of maritime law, construction law and personal injury litigation topics with which he has developed expertise.

             Deisler v. McCormack Aggregates, Co., 54 F.3d 1074, 1087 (3rd Cir. 1995) (decision upholding awards of maintenance and cure, compensatory damages and attorneys fees).

             Brogan v. United New York Sandy Hook Pilots' Association, Inc., 213 F.Supp.2d 432 (D.N.J. 2002) (upholding award to pilot injured during boarding procedure).

             Abbud v. City of New York, 1997 WL 633463 (S.D.N.Y. 1998) affd 159 F.3d 1345 (1998) (regarding interplay of maritime and New York Labor Law)

             Olsen v. James Miller Marine Service, Inc., 791 N.Y.S.2d 92 (1st Dept. 2005) (injured dockbuilder who fell through hole on a barge entitled to assert cause of action under Labor Law § §  240 and 241, along with cause of action against the vessel owner for 905(b) negligence)

             Cammon v. City of New York, 95 N.Y.2d 583 (2000) rehearing denied, 96 N.Y.2d 793 (Ct. App. 2001) (seminal case from New York Court of Appeals finding maritime construction workers covered by LHWCA may assert causes of action against landowners under New York Labor Law)

             Eriksen v. Long Island Lighting Co., 236 A.D.2d 439 (2d Dept. 1997) (Precursor to Cammon obtained in Appellate Division, upon which Cammon analysis was built.)

             Becker v. Poling Transportation Corp., 356 F.3d 381 (2d Cir. 2004) (Applying novel Restatement of Torts provisions to claim of seaman badly burned in a barge explosion)

             Garner v. Energy Transportation Corporation,1996 U.S. App. LEXIS 15368 (2d Cir. 1996) (seaman’s personal injury claim wherein defendant’s counsel challenged every aspect of

             Marcic v. Reinauer Transportation , 397 F.3d 120 (2d Cir. 2005) (decision regarding whether a seaman’s contract setting a minimum of $15/day permits the seaman to prove in court a higher amount, as a matter of contract interpretation)

             Dahingo v. Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd., 312 F.Supp. 2d 440 (S.D.N.Y. 2004). (Class action decision under Seaman’s Wage Act holding that late filed claims appropriately rejected, but that timely, unsigned claims can be signed and resubmitted)

             Wesley v. City of New York, 2010 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 6815 (1st Dept. 2010) Seaman ferry worker injured through unseaworthy chainfall system. One of handful of decisions finding that unseaworthiness can be determined in plaintiff’s favor on motion for summary judgment)

             Razo v. Nordic Empress Shipping, Inc. 2009 U.S. App. LEXIS 23713 (3d Cir. 2009), (affirming Razo v. Nordic Empress Shipping, Inc., 2008 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 57618 (D.N.J. 2008)).  (Filipino seaman sued vessel owner, Nordic Empress Shipping, Inc. and his separate employer, Royal Caribbean Cruises, Ltd. for injuries resulting from a defective lifeboat which fell some 60 feet to the water below with him and several other crewmembers in it. The court held that seaman’s arbitration clause with employer did not apply to separate subsidiary shipowner)

             Harrison v. State of New York, 88 A.D.3d 951 (2d Dept. 2011). (Did fall of a 150-200 pound generator from edge of wall along pier unto a tugboat properly invoke protections of New York Labor Law § 240)

             Lee v. Astoria Generating Co., L.P., 55 A.D.3d 124 (1st Dept. 2010) reversed by Lee v. Astoria Generating Co., L.P., 13 N.Y.3d 382, cert. denied --- U.S. ----, 131 S.Ct. 215 (2011) (whether a barge nearly permanently affixed to the land, used as a power plant, and not having been moved in past decade constitutes a vessel in navigation)

             Aragona v. State of New York, 74 A.D.3d 1260 (2d Dept. 2010) (reversing summary judgment for defendant and applying certain provisions of the New York Industrial Code in construction workers’ injury claim in bridge construction project)

             Rodriquez-Alvarez v. Bermuda Star Lines, 898 F.2d 312 (2d Cir. 1990)(seaman entitled to actual costs of food and lodging for maintenance rate, attorneys fee awardable for failure to provide proper maintenance and cure) Alvarez-Rodriquez

             Aggarao v. MOL Ship Management, Inc., 675 F.3d 355 (4th Cir. 2012) (Filipino seafarer rendered paraplegic on ship in U.S. harbor not entitled to sue in the United States due to arbitration clause incorporated in his contract)

             Olsen v. Reinauer Transportation Companies, L.P., 300 A.D.2d 76 (1st Dept. 2002) (holding that Shipowner’s Limitation of Liability Act cannot be raised as a defense in state court as there is no admiralty jurisdiction)

             Angeles v. Norwegian Cruise Lines, Inc.,  2002 WL 1997898 (S.D.N.Y., 2002) (holding that seafarer’s contract alleged arbitration clause not enforceable if no proof that seafarer signed agreement)

             Guenther v. Sedco, Inc., 1998 WL 898349 (S.D.N.Y. 1998) (Denying defendants motion to dismss seafarers class action under Seaman’s Wage Act)

             Calcaterra v. City of New York, 45 A.D.3d 270 (1st Dept. 2007) (construction worker generally assigned to work barge could be considered a seaman for Jones Act purposes)

             Coppinger v. Metro-North Commuter Railroad, 861 F.2d 33 (2d Cir. 1988) (Railroad worker’s civil rights action not preempted by Railway Labor Act)

Law School:
New York Law School, JD 1981
Rutgers University, BA Communications 1975

Professional Organizations:
-Member, American Association for Justice
Section Memberships: Admiralty

Current Member of the Admiralty Executive Committee, Active Participation in Many Policy Making Decisions and Assisted AAJ in Legislative Attempts to Modify Death on High Seas Act and the Limitation of Liavility Act and to Portect the Seaman's Wage Act for Cruise lines Class Actions.
1997-98, Section Chairman
1996-97, Section Vice-Chairman
1995-96, Section Secretary

Railroad, 1995-present
-New Jersey Bar Association
-New York State Trial Lawyers Association
-New Jersey Association for Justice
-Maritime Law Association of the United States, Secretary Maritime Torts Section

Other Organizations:
-Traumatic Brain Injury Association
-Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Association

1989 Guest Lecturer, University of Glasgow, School of Law
"Comparative American and Scottish Civil Procedure"
1993 ATLA Annual Convention Lecture,
"Use of Professional and Regulatory Standards to Prove Liability in Maritime Personal Injury Cases"
1999 Delegate to the U.S. Committee
Negotiations for Draft Hague Convention on Foreign Jurisdiction and Enforcement of Judgments
The Hague, Netherlands
2002 ATLA Winter Convention Lecture
"Claims Arising on Government Vessels"
2004 Lecture, New Jersey - Institute for Continuing Legal Education (I.C.L.E.)
"From Sea To Sky", A general overview of maritime personal injury claims
2007 Lecture to Maritime Law Association
Thoughts on the Legal Decision in the Staten Island Ferry Crash - a Plaintiff's Personal Injury Attorney's Perspective
2008 AAJ Convention Lecture and Paper
"The ISM Code's Applicability to, and Benefits for, Injured Maritime Claimants"
2010 New York County Lawyer's Association Lecture
"Is the Jones Act Dead for the Foreign Seaman? Some Current Topics in Application of the Jones Act and General Maritime Law to a Foreign Seafarer's Personal Injury Claim"

2011 Lee V. Astoria Generating - its Impact on Cammon v. City of New York, New York's Labor Law and the Issue of Preemption under the Longshore and Harborsworkers compensation Act ("LHWCA')

-ATLA Admiralty Section Newsletter
"Claims Arising on Government Vessels", 1992. An analysis of the requirements and pitfalls in handling claims against government owned or operated vessels.
Tulane University Law School Maritime Law Journal, 1999, An Analytical Framework for Maritime Preemption Cases Involving Wrongful Death Damages - The Legacy of Miles, Yamaha, Amtrack and Others.

Civic Organizations:
-Member and Legal Advisor, New Jersey Association of Rail Passengers
-Coach, Warren Youth Basketball Assn.

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