Pro Bono Legal Services for Victims of the I-35W Bridge Collapse

Chris Messerly was the spokesperson and a leader, along with co-counsel Phil Sieff, of a 17 law firm consortium providing legal services to the over 100 survivors and those who lost loved ones on August 1, 2007 when the I-35W Bridge in downtown Minneapolis collapsed into the Mississippi River. Our firm has provided free legal services to its clients. In 2008, we helped secure a legislatively created $37 million compensation fund for survivors and those who lost loved ones. In 2009, we recovered additional compensation from PCI Corporation, the construction company which placed thousands of pounds of construction material on the bridge the day it collapsed. In August 2010, URS Corporation, the company hired by the State to provide engineering services on the bridge, agreed to pay more than $40 million to settle the Consortium clients' claims. An additional $1.5 million was recovered from URS which all attorneys representing those on the bridge donated for the construction of a memorial. In total, more than $77 million has been recovered for survivors and those who lost loved ones and Robins Kaplan LLP attorneys and staff devoted more than 20,000 pro bono hours to the case.

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