McGuireWoods won nearly $8 million in damages for a human traffcking survivor in a federal lawsuit against a “regimented cult” and the group’s leader, who forced our client to work since she was a child without pay, benefits or breaks for a decade. Our team argued for a novel prevailing wages formula and won a federal civil suit for our pro bono client that now serves as a model in this developing area of law.
The U.S. Supreme Court sided with our client and ruled decisively that police offcers without a warrant cannot use the automobile exception to enter a home’s curtilage to access a vehicle. The ruling, which provided needed clarity to the scope of the automobile exception, will now become part of police training across the country, and the case will stand as a major bulwark protecting the sanctity of the home from creeping exceptions.
The firm successfully settled a case in which the landlord of a deployed Navy petty offcer had obtained default judgments, seized money from the petty offcer’s bank accounts and tried to garnish her Navy wages. McGuireWoods, which represented the petty offcer pro bono, persuaded the court to vacate the default judgments, leaving her eligible for the security clearance she needed to maintain her career in the Navy.
Fleeing violence in Central America, thousands of child refugees have crossed the U.S. border in recent years. McGuireWoods trained a team of lawyers to represent children and their families pro bono in navigating the complicated family and immigration courts.
Japanese immigrant and activist Sei Fujii immigrated to the U.S. in 1903 and earned a law degree from the University of Southern California. However, he was not allowed to become a lawyer due to xenophobic immigration laws. Undaunted, Fujii championed the civil rights of Japanese in America from 1911 until his death in 1954. In 2017, McGuireWoods successfully persuaded the California Supreme Court to posthumously admit Fujii to the state bar.
ADVOCATED FOR DISABLED VETERAN’S RIGHTS
An elderly, disabled veteran had served in the Army during the Korean War and developed subsequent foot and back pain, but over the ensuing years, Veterans Affairs twice denied his claims for benefits. We won $80,000 in back benefits for him, plus ongoing monthly benefits from the Veterans Benefits Administration and VA medical care.
10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF VERIZON/ MCGUIREWOODS COMMUNITY CLINIC
In 2007, lawyers from McGuireWoods and AOL, now part of Oath (a Verizon company), formed a community legal clinic in the Southgate neighborhood in Reston, Virginia — home to hundreds of international émigrés. In monthly clinics, McGuireWoods and Verizon lawyers have paired in what has become one of the most enduring collaborative pro bono legal access organizations in the country.