Peter DePaolis

Peter DePaolis headshot

Since entering private practice in 1980, Peter C. DePaolis has exclusively represented personal injury victims in Virginia and the District of Columbia.

He has represented a large number of individuals involved in automobile collisions, truck accidents, bus crashes, defective products, and medical malpractice cases. By providing free consultations to those who may find themselves in difficult situations, he aims to make individuals and families aware of their rights. He will discuss whether prospective clients have recourse to hold the responsible party accountable for their actions.


Mr. DePaolis has successfully handled claims involving WMATA bus collisions as well as subway accidents. From smaller car accidents to devastating collisions between semi-trucks and passenger vehicles, his knowledge working in these fields can benefit anyone needing legal guidance. Having Mr. DePaolis on your side makes sure that your case receives the support it needs to obtain a just result.

He continues to represent victims of medical malpractice involving negligent care from doctors, hospitals, clinics and nursing homes. Mr. DePaolis has handled many cases involving traumatic brain injuries arising from car accidents as well as workers compensation accidents.


A significant portion of Mr. DePaolis’ practice is devoted to working on behalf of people suffering from asbestosis, mesothelioma and other asbestos-related cancers. He has led his firm’s fight against the asbestos industry and has recovered over $30 million in damages for asbestos victims and their families. Early in his career, Mr. DePaolis won a landmark decision in Wilson v. Johns Manville, which established the right of asbestos victims to file two separate claims: one for asbestosis and the other for a subsequently diagnosed mesothelioma or asbestos-induced cancers. The Wilson decision has been followed by courts throughout the country and has led to successful recoveries for thousands of victims of asbestos diseases.


Mr. DePaolis was born in Hartford, CT, and graduated as Phi Beta Kappa Scholar from Lafayette College in 1971. He served for two years as a Lieutenant in the United States Army from 1971-1973. After discharge from active duty, he attended the George Washington University Law Center where he graduated in 1976, having received recognition as an Order of the Coif Scholar. Mr. DePaolis is active in a number of civic associations in the Northern Virginia area and has coached his children in the West Springfield Little League, Burke Soccer Club and Burke Athletic Club for more than 20 years. He is married to Karen Crist DePaolis and has four children.

Prior to joining the law firm in 1980, Mr. DePaolis was a Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable William E. Stewart, Jr., in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. Thereafter he served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Columbia for three years from 1977-1980. Mr. DePaolis is extremely active in a number of bar associations, having served in a number of capacities, including as President of the Fairfax Bar Association. He is a member of the Virginia Trial Lawyers as well as the Association of Trial Lawyers of America, the Virginia Bar Association, the Virginia State Bar, as well as the District of Columbia Bar Association and the Bar Association of the District of Columbia. Mr. DePaolis is also a member of the Virginia Boyd Graves Commission. He has also served as a mediator and arbitrator in personal injury and medical malpractice cases.


  • Medical Malpractice Settlement – In 2010 obtained a $4.75 million settlement for a young man who suffered bilateral arm amputation and brain injury.
  • Virginia Auto Crash & Workers’ Compensation Case – Obtained $3.6 million settlement for a worker who suffered spinal cord injury (quadriplegia) in an auto crash.
  • Medical Malpractice Settlement – Brain Injured Newborn – In 2011 obtained a $3.2 million settlement.
  • Virginia Bus/Tractor Trailer Death Case – In 2011 obtained $1.4 million settlement for bus driver struck by a tractor-trailer.
  • Virginia Automobile Collision – $1.2 million settlement for an 82-year-old man who was pinned between two cars in a parking lot. (December 2007)
  • Virginia Child Mauled by Dog – $270,000 settlement for 5-year-old child mauled by neighbor’s dog.
  • Virginia Traumatic Brain Injury Case – $2 million verdict in Fairfax, Virginia, for 50-year-old Virginia woman who was struck by teenage drivers speeding on a parkway. (Reported in Virginia Lawyers Weekly, June 11, 2007).
  • Virginia Metro Subway Fatality – $650,000 verdict for an elderly man, who was legally blind, killed after falling between two Metro subway cars.
  • Asbestos Victims’ Verdict – $3.5 million verdict for 10 workers who developed asbestosis after years of exposure to defective products containing asbestos.
  • Virginia Auto Crash – Neck Injury – $300,000 verdict in Fairfax, VA for 27-year-old woman struck by another vehicle, leading to a cervical fusion.
  • Virginia Workers’ Compensation Case – Traumatic Brain Injury Settlement – $500,000 settlement for worker who suffered traumatic brain injury when struck by a vehicle while working. The worker was on benefits for over 15 years prior to settlement.
  • Virginia Workers’ Compensation Case – Traumatic Brain Injury Settlement – $1.2 million settlement for construction worker who fell from steel beam on a jobsite.


  • Recognized by Washingtonian Magazine in 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013 as one of DC area’s top personal injury lawyers and among the Best Lawyers for 2015
  • Recognized by Northern Virginia Magazine as a 2011 and 2013 Top Lawyer
  • Recognized by Richmond Super Lawyers for 2009
  • Received highest ranking by LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating for 2008
  • Recognized by Washington, D.C. and Virginia Super Lawyers in 2006 and 2007
  • Recognized as among Virginia Super Lawyers for 2015 and 2016

Speak to Mr. DePaolis or one of our other attorneys in Virginia, Maryland or Washington, D.C.  contact us by calling our office or filling out a contact form.