J.J. Hutson is Of Counsel with the Seattle office of Williams Kastner. His practice focuses on litigation and the defense of asbestos-related personal injury claims. J.J. started his Seattle legal career with Williams Kastner in 1987, and returned to the firm in 2020 after a litigation career defending businesses and individuals against various personal injury claims brought against them in Washington courts. After doing defense litigation work with private firms in Seattle, J.J. was recruited to open the Seattle staff legal office of Zurich Insurance in 1997, where he defended Zurich commercials insureds in various liability claims. After more than 10 years with Zurich, J.J. was recruited to join the Seattle staff legal office of another national liability insurance carrier, doing the same type of work. In 2019, after more than seven years with Liberty Mutual Insurance Staff Legal, J.J. returned to private practice. He re-joined Williams Kastner in 2020.
J.J.’s defense trial experience has included such varied liability suits as wrongful death claims involving the collapse of a grain silo and a truck-pedestrian collision, and significant claims involving alleged asbestos-related mesothelioma, product liability, premises liability, medical malpractice, and fire loss.
Washington State Bar Association
Washington Defense Trial Lawyers Association
Estate of Green v. Superior Systems, King County, WA 2016. Defense of mechanical contractor who had performed repairs on the grain silo adjacent to the silo that subsequently collapsed, killing grain mill worker. Plaintiff Estate alleged that the defendant contractor should have discovered and repaired the corrosion defect in the adjacent silo in conjunction with the repair work on the adjacent silo. Following a multi-week trial, a hi-low settlement was reached by the defense insurance carrier and plaintiff counsel minutes before the jury returned a defense verdict.
Estate of Fu v. Dong Vinh, Inc., King County, WA 2012. Defense of wrongful death suit involving an elderly pedestrian who ran into a Seattle downtown street to catch a Metro bus at the bus stop on the opposite side of the street, only to be struck and killed by defendant’s commercial delivery truck as it drove past the bus stop. The returned verdict set the Seattle Liberty Mutual Staff Legal office record for the quickest returned jury defense verdict (15 minutes).
Cullup v. Pacific Hospitality, King County, WA 2017. Defense of hotel owner in personal injury suit involving trip-and-fall by hotel patron in hotel lobby resulting in fracture requiring total hip replacement, with admitted medical costs of nearly $200,000. Defense verdict.
Leber v. American Fire & Casualty Co., King County, 2014. Defense of insurance carrier in suit for underinsured motorist coverage benefits in admitted liability rear-end motor vehicle accident. By the time of trial, the plaintiff insured had undergone multiple cervical and lumbar fusions at different levels, alleging these surgeries were all attributable to the rear-end motor vehicle collision. Following a multiweek trial, the jury agreed with defense counsel on the scope of attributable damages from the motor vehicle collision, and awarded total damages below the amount plaintiff had already received from the liability carrier for the at-fault driver, resulting in a net defense award in favor of the defendant UIM insurer.