Michael Ward devotes his practice to civil litigation including commercial litigation, products liability defense, tort defense, professional liability defense, legal malpractice, medical malpractice, representation of local governments and constitutional officers, appeals, employment law, representation of financial institutions, and the defense of consumer credit matters. He practices throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia in both state and federal courts. He has an active trial practice and regularly tries cases to juries and arbitrators. Mike was selected for inclusion in Super Lawyers in 2010 - 2012 (civil litigation defense) and The Best Lawyers in America in 2011 - 2018 (personal injury litigation and products liability).
Mike has represented clients in tort actions of all kinds, including vehicle accidents, defamation claims, premises liability matters, and commercial accidents. He has taken or defended hundreds of depositions of fact and expert witnesses, and has extensive trial experience. His personal injury practice includes the defense of brain injury cases, and he has successfully tried three of these to verdict.
Mike has experience defending products liability actions including those involving personal injuries, fires, and property damage. He has defended products including, among others, tree felling machines, leashes, busses, tractors, chemicals, cans, conveyor belts, hydraulic components, industrial forges, saws, machinery, and power tools. He has defended all phases of such cases, including investigation, discovery, and trial.
Mike has a broad commercial litigation practice that includes general commercial disputes, contract claims, construction litigation, and the representation of financial institutions. He has represented insurers against first party claims and third party claims on auto, home, life, and business policies. He has experience in administrative matters before governmental agencies, and successfully sued the Department of Social Services on behalf of several martial arts facilities.
As a member of the Government & Public Entities Practice Group, Mike has represented local governments and their employees/officers, including police officers and sheriffs, in civil rights litigation, contract disputes, employment disputes, litigation with developers, and prisoner claims. He regularly defends professional liability matters including the representation of attorneys accused of malpractice and ethical violations. He has also defended corporate officers accused of wrongdoing.
Mike also has an appellate practice, and has handled and argued matters before the Supreme Court of Virginia, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, and the Supreme Court of Louisiana.
Mike was born in Hartford, Connecticut. He earned an undergraduate degree in history from Vanderbilt University in 1990. He earned his law degree from Tulane Law School in 1995, graduating Magna Cum Laude and Order of the Coif. While in law school, he was a Justice of the Moot Court Board, and was awarded the American Jurisprudence Award and Corpus Juris Secundum Award. He is a member of Phi Delta Phi.
Mike and his wife, Virginia, have three sons. He enjoys activities with his sons, reading, and running in his spare time.
- Best Lawyers in America for Personal Injury Litigation- Defendants, 2011-2018 and Product Liability Litigation- Defendants, 2018
- Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated
- Super Lawyers for Civil Litigation- Defense, 2010 - 2012
Professional and Community Involvement
- Richmond Bar Association (RBA)
- Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys (VADA)
- Defense Research Institute (DRI)
- ALFA International, Product Liability & Complex Tort, Steering Committee Member
- Co-Author, Defending Negligence Per Se Claims Under Virginia Law, Journal of Civil Litigation, Vol. 30, No. 4 (Winter 2018-2019), a publication of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys
- Course Book Editor, ALFA International 2010 International Client Seminar, Pioneering Through the New Economic Frontier: Product Liability in a Changed World (2010)
- Appellate Review of Adverse Privilege Determinations, Business Litigation Update by ALFA International, Vol. 2008 Issue 1 (2008)
- Course Book Editor, ALFA International 2008 Product Liability Practice Group Seminar, Beyond the Horizon….A New Dawn for Global Product Liability Claims (2008)
- Course Book Editor, ALFA International 2007 International Client Seminar, Shifting Sands of Global Product Liability Issues (2007)
- Author, Successor Liability in Virginia, Journal of Civil Litigation Vol. X, No. 4 (1998), a publication of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys