William O’Kane is an accomplished trial lawyer who represents clients in product liability, commercial, insurance and other personal injury litigation matters. Bill serves as Chair of Archer’s Personal Injury Practice Group. He has tried more than 30 cases to verdict. His trial experience includes significant product liability, professional malpractice, motor vehicle and premises liability cases. Bill’s extensive product liability litigation experience includes toxic tort claims, including chemical exposures, exercise equipment, pharmaceuticals, medical devices, household and consumer products, motor vehicles and construction equipment. Bill is designated as a “Certified Civil Trial Attorney” by the New Jersey Supreme Court. This distinguished honor is granted to only approximately 2% of the attorneys practicing in the State of New Jersey.
Bill successfully defended a national law firm in a legal malpractice action in which a Fortune 500 Company sought more than $75 million in damages. The case involved complex issues of environmental, securities and corporate law and arose out of the law firm’s representation of the Company in a corporate acquisition. Along with Frank Allen, Bill secured a defense verdict for his client.
Bill also successfully defended a home healthcare company, in a personal injury case where a teenage boy sustained a traumatic brain injury. Bill’s skillful and tactical defense lead to all claims against his client being dismissed on Summary Judgment which was sustained on appeal through to the New Jersey Supreme Court.
Bill’s commercial practice includes bid protest, tax appeals and condemnation litigation. Bill successfully represented EDS in a bid protest brought by IBM related to EDS winning a $90 million contract with the State of New Jersey.
Recent Plaintiff Personal Injury results include: a $2.275M recovery for a bicyclist injury in a car accident; a $1,000,000 recovery for a man who suffered a fractured pelvis in a car accident; a confidential settlement for a woman assaulted by a caregiver in a Group Home; a $700,000 recovery for an older couple injured in a car accident on the New Jersey Turnpike; a $480,000 recovery for an adult woman who sustained a brachial plexus injury in a car accident; a confidential settlement for a railroad worker who died on the job from heat stroke; a recovery for a worker who fell through a home’s attic floor; a $320,000 settlement during trial for a young girl who fractured her leg in a fall from bleachers; and a $220,000 recovery for a man who tore his rotator cuff after slipping on ice in front of a store.
- Took over the defense and successfully resolved claims against a school district where three high school teachers had allegedly engaged in sexual contact with students.
- Co-Lead counsel in the defense of a client’s first asbestos exposure mesothelioma case. Case dismissed on Summary Judgment after expert discovery was completed.
- Product Liability/Toxic Tort – defense of a benzene cancer case, venued in Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, case resolved after motions in limine were filed and a week before jury selection for less than our client’s anticipated cost of trial.
- Defense of a home health equipment/supply company, in a product liability – electrical bed fire case where a grandmother was on fire and transferred fire on her person to another room in the house prior to her death. Plaintiff made $10M demand, and case settled for confidential amount reflective of the cost of an anticipated four week trial.
- Defense of an exploding aerosol can product liability case involving loss of an eye and a closed head injury; case settled favorable for a confidential amount at plaintiffs mediation after oral argument on Summary Judgment motion involving Daubert issues.
- Co-counsel with Frank Allen in a product liability UTV/ATV accident which resulted in a confidential seven figure settlement.
- Other significant product liability cases have involved the choking hazards of small toys ($3.9M); Explosion hazards of a welding storage box ($5.5M); Defective utility brackets ($3.5M). Defense cases have involved food products, chemical and occupational exposure, fire death cases, medical devices and construction equipment.
Professional and Community Involvement
- New Jersey Bar Association
- New Jersey Association for Justice
Awards and Recognition
- Named a “Top Attorney” for Product Liability by SJ Magazine (2013, 2014, 2016-2019, 2022)
- Named an “Awesome Attorney” for Product Liability by South Jersey Magazine (2019-2022)