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After more than two decades representing catastrophically injured clients, plaintiffs’ litigator Martin Brigham declared himself burned out. With Brigham needing a break and longtime partner Eunice Trevor still looking to continue practicing last spring, the pair dissolved their firm, Brigham & Trevor, and went their separate ways. Because of the extent of his success, Brigham could afford to take off a year and spend more time with his family while also learning more about mediation. With his batteries recharged, the rainmaking attorney has decided to get back in the game and join Litvin Blumberg Matusow & Young. When he starts next week, Brigham will move in to the office just vacated by longtime Litvin Blumberg partner Cliff Haines, who left last month to start his own firm. This time around, though, Brigham plans to temper his schedule to avoid another case of burnout. While he will still handle a good number of cases, Brigham will handle fewer of them while introducing a mediation element to his practice as well as teaching trial advocacy. “The Litvin firm has more resources than our old firm,” Brigham said. “More than half the firm’s lawyers handle catastrophic injury cases. And I’m at a different stage of my career. I’m not trying to make partner. I can afford to be more evenly paced. It’s amazing what a year off will do for your perspective. I think to myself, I can’t believe I ever did that.” Brigham made a name for himself through his 18 years as one of the top lawyers at Galfand Berger — the last 10 of which he served as managing partner. But in 1999, he and Trevor left to start their own firm, where they handled workplace accident and products liability cases, with a specific expertise in representing burn victims. The two were able to secure several million-dollar verdicts and settlements for their clients and were particularly adept at using 3-D animation to either persuade a defendant to settle or achieve a favorable verdict. In February 2003, Brigham & Trevor secured a $10.34 million settlement for a Lehigh County electrician who suffered second- and third-degree burns during an electrical explosion at Lucent Technologies’ Allentown plant. In August 2001, the firm got a $5 million cash settlement — and up to $30 million in the future — for a Southwest Philadelphia boy who suffered burns over 20 percent of his body after a stove toppled and spilled scalding water on him. And in 2000, the firm secured a confidential settlement that sources say was for an extremely high figure in connection with an accident at the Dover Downs Raceway in Delaware that caused several people to suffer massive burns. When Brigham decided to pull the plug on the firm last spring, Trevor quickly secured a job as of counsel at Saltz Mongeluzzi Barrett & Bendesky. When Brigham decided he was ready to continue practicing, he looked at several firms but settled on Litvin Blumberg because of its commitment to public service, to teaching trial advocacy and to its clients, he said. Litvin Blumberg partner Gerald McHugh called Brigham when he heard about the firm dissolving, but Brigham was not interested at that time in discussing his future as a lawyer. McHugh, who had known Brigham for several years, kept up the correspondence, but things did not get serious until this year. McHugh ran into Rawle & Henderson partner Tom Kuzmick, a frequent foe of both the Litvin firm and Brigham’s. “We started talking about people that we respect in the bar,” Kuzmick said, “and I told him how highly I thought of Marty as a lawyer and a person and that it was too bad he wasn’t practicing. I think that got Jerry thinking more seriously about the possibility of having Marty join the firm.” McHugh said he entered more serious discussions with Brigham last month. While Brigham will move in to the office formerly occupied by Haines, McHugh said, the departure and the subsequent addition were not related. Litvin Blumberg has 23 attorneys, 14 of whom are partners. The firm has been at that level for a number of years, and McHugh said it has no plans for major expansion. While Brigham will not have the same workload as he previously had, McHugh said he hopes that after a period of integration, Brigham might become a partner and spend the rest of his career with the firm.

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