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What Should I Look For In An Aviation Accident Attorney?


A: Top aviation lawyers are more than lawyers with a pilot's license. Aviation attorneys are experienced in dealing with: 1) the FAA - which heavily regulates the aviation industry, 2) the NTSB - which controls the investigation of all serious civilian accidents in the United States, 3) aviation insurers -who provide the money to settle these cases and 4) experts - who are knowledgeable and credible in the fields of metallurgy, accident reconstruction, meteorology, air traffic control, avionics, etc. Remember, while an attorney's aviation credentials are important, it is his or her particular skill as a lawyer, coupled with aviation experience and diligence, that will get results.

Michael Pearson has been around, or directly involved in, aviation since his youth. Having grown up in Dayton, Ohio with a father who was in the Air Force, a pilot, and an FAA controller, he was engaged with many facets of aviation a very young age.

Mike has worked as a Federal Aviation Administration air traffic control specialist in the TRACON (approach control) and Tower environments (at several different high density facilities) for over 26 years. Mike also worked as a Quality Assurance Specialist for the FAA, where he gained intimate knowledge regarding the FAA’s enforcement action program and accident protocol. While working as a controller he was detailed to the FAA legal division for a period of time to assist FAA attorneys. He is a graduate of many FAA classes and courses including the Department of Transportation aviation accident investigation program where he gained valuable practical and technical insight into aviation accidents. Mike is a reviewer for the Journal of Air Transportation World Wide and wrote a monthly column for a national aviation magazine. He is currently finishing an aviation law textbook “Aviation Law” for a major academic publisher.

Michael completed his undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, at the University of Houston and also holds MBA and Juris Doctorate degrees, with high honors, from Arizona State University. While attending law school, Mr. Pearson was nominated as a Pedrick Scholar due to academic excellence, and awarded honors in legal writing and research. He graduated near the top of his class despite working full time for the FAA while attending law school.

Mike has taught aviation law, aviation regulations, as well as other legal subjects, at Arizona State University since 1993 and is currently an Associate Professor. Prior to accepting his academic appointment at Arizona State University, Mike taught at aviation law at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Mr. Pearson often speaks at academic and professional conferences regarding aviation topics. Most recently, Pearson spoke on the subject of human factors in air traffic control at the International Symposium on Aviation Psychology conference at Wright Patterson Air Force base at the invitation of the Air Force Research Laboratory.

Mr. Pearson has extensive civil litigation experience focusing his practice on trial law. Mike handles matters including wrongful death cases (including aircraft and helicopter accidents), FAA enforcement action cases, complex litigation, and serious personal injury matters. He is currently a member at Curry, Pearson & Wooten, PLC. Martindale Hubbell rates Mike, and the firm, “AV” which is the highest rating possible. In addition, Michael Pearson is listed in the Bar Register as a Preeminent Lawyer. Michael’s aviation clients are varied including family members who have lost loved ones in airplane and helicopter accidents, those injured on domestic and international flights, and airman accused by the FAA of violating the Federal Aviation Regulations He has handled litigation cases for international airlines such as Air France and Zest Airways.

Michael is selective in the cases he accepts in order to provide unparalleled time, dedication, and focus to his clients and is often referred cases by other attorneys due to his extensive background in aviation matters. Make sure the attorney you select has the background necessary to properly handle your case.

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