David B. Stratton

David B. Stratton's Profile Image
Phone: (703) 246-0900
Fax: (703) 591-3673

Since joining the firm, David B. Stratton has had over 29 years' experience in civil litigation, including insurance coverage litigation, insurance coverage opinions, general liability defense, legal malpractice defense, premises liability defense, civil appellate matters, police civil liability matters, professional liability claims against agents and brokers, construction litigation, and workers compensation defense.

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Representative experience includes:

Insurance coverage

Obtained summary judgment for an insurer in a federal declaratory judgment action based on misrepresentations in application for insurance, in case involving brain damage due to choking, and obtained affirmance on appeal.

Obtained judgment on appeal in coverage dispute between insurers based on interpretation of “other insurance” clauses and contractual indemnity agreements to determine which insurer was primary.

Obtained summary judgment for insurer in declaratory judgment action to establish that it was not obligated to provide a defense or indemnity to the insured with regard to a class action lawsuit alleging defective construction and installation of mobile homes, on the grounds that foreseeable contract obligations arising from defective construction or installation did not meet the policy definition of an “occurrence.”

Served as coverage counsel for an insurer in a truck liability case involving MCS-90 coverage issues.

Prepared numerous coverage opinions involving Businessowners', CGL, LPL, and other types of policies.

Handled numerous workers compensation insurance coverage matters in Maryland and the District of Columbia involving residual market policies.

General litigation (motor vehicle, premises, construction, fire, products liability)

Obtained defense verdict for trucking company in tractor-trailer/pedestrian accident on industrial site, based on contributory negligence.

Obtained defense judgment for contractor in case involving falling object which caused workplace head injury to an electrician.

Acted as part of the litigation team for the representation of a propane gas company in residential propane gas explosion case which injured numerous volunteer firemen, including the litigation of Fireman's Rule in Maryland at trial and on appeal.

Obtained dismissal in construction defect subrogation suit based on statute of limitations.

Represented a developer in a wrongful death case in Maryland arising from house collapse during demolition.

Represented a construction company in a suit arising out of flooding of parking garage caused by broken service line for fire hydrant.

Represented a sprinkler company in suit arising out of water damage to hotel due to a frozen and burst sprinkler pipe.

Represented landlords in suits for personal injuries caused by criminal acts of third parties on premises.

Represented an underground construction company in a case arising out accident that severed fiber optic cables owned by telephone company.

Represented a condominium unit owner in second hand smoke suit raising trespass, nuisance and negligence.

Employment law

Obtained summary judgment in federal age discrimination case involving auto dealership.

Obtained affirmance on appeal of summary judgment in federal age discrimination case involving convention center.

Professional liability defense

Represented lawyers, investment advisors, insurance agents and home inspectors in numerous professional negligence and breach of fiduciary duty matters.

Obtained a defense judgment in favor of title company in a four day bench trial involving allegations of improper disbursement of proceeds of real estate settlement to third parties.

As always, all matters are decided on their own particular facts or merits, and, because each case is different and litigation is inherently unpredictable, the past record is no assurance of reaching a favorable result in any future case.

Mr. Stratton has been the author of the Insurance Defense Blog, and was the author of "Insurance Law: Third Party Coverage in Maryland" (NBI 1996).

Prior to joining the Firm, in his six years as an active duty judge advocate in the U.S. Marine Corps, Mr. Stratton spent 14 months defending accuseds in courts-martial in Okinawa, Japan; spent approximately two years representing the Government in more than 300 court-martial appeals; spent 20 months handling officer misconduct matters at Headquarters, U.S. Marine Corps; and for approximately five months was attached to the White House as part of a task force handling matters related to the Iran-Contra Investigation. (Like all judge advocates in the U.S. Marine Corps, he also received training as an infantry officer in Officers Candidate School and The Basic School, and as a judge advocate at Naval Justice School.)

Reported Cases

Smigelski v. Potomac Ins. Co., 403 Md. 55, 939 A.2d 189 (2008)(workers compensation)

Liberty Mut. Ins. Co. v. CB Richard Ellis, Inc., 242 Fed. Appx. 32 (4th Cir. Md. 2007)(insurance coverage)

Williams v. Wash. Convention Ctr. Auth., 481 F.3d 856, 375 U.S. App. D.C. 360 (2007)(employment discrimination)

Scottsdale Ins. Co. v. Nat'l Ctr. on Insts. & Alternatives, Inc., 169 Fed. Appx. 176 (4th Cir. Md. 2006)(insurance coverage)

Hill v. G.E. Capital Mortg. Servs., 859 A.2d 1055 (D.C. 2004)

Phelan v. City of Mt. Rainier, 805 A.2d 930 (D.C. 2002)(police misconduct)

Peddlers Square, Inc. v. Scheuermann, 766 A.2d 551 (D.C. 2001)(Rule 11)

McCoubrey v. Kellogg, Krebs & Moran, 7 Fed. Appx. 215 (4th Cir. Md. 2001)(legal malpractice defense)

Cohen v. Duracell Int'l U.S.A., 2 Fed. Appx. 373 (4th Cir. Md. 2001)(products liability)

Velasquez v. District of Columbia Dep't of Empl. Servs., 723 A.2d 401 (D.C. 1999)(workers compensation)

Sibley Memorial Hospital v. District of Columbia Dept. of Employment Services, 711 A.2d 105 (D.C. 1998)(workers compensation)

Stone v. District of Columbia Dept. of Employment Services, 707 A.2d 789 (D.C. 1998)(workers compensation)

Shannon-Huber v. General Elec. Capital Auto Lease, Inc., 676 A.2d 467 (D.C. 1996)(auto lessor liability)

Cooke v. National Tire Wholesale, 1996 U.S. App. LEXIS 11686 (4th Cir. Md. May 22, 1996)(employment discrimination)

Fraidin v. Weitzman, 93 Md. App. 168, 611 A.2d 1046 1992)(legal malpractice defense)