For more than three decades, Kurt has defended clients in mass tort, product liability, and commercial litigation cases in jurisdictions across the country. He has extensive experience in complex multidistrict proceedings and has successfully represented clients in a variety of sectors, including Life Sciences and Pharmaceuticals, Manufacturing, and Retail and Consumer.
Whether through a jury verdict, judge’s order, or out-of-court resolution, Kurt consistently secures favorable outcomes for his clients and is actively involved in those matters at every stage of litigation. He has defended and taken 13 separate complex tort cases to a jury verdict in the last seven years, serving as the first-chair lawyer in 12 of those trials. His caseload often requires intensive work with medical and scientific expert witnesses or coordinating strategy with common interest or joint defense groups.
Kurt proactively counsels his clients on litigation and regulatory risks, including defensive strategies, expert witness retention, and exposure risks involving consumer products and alleged injury claims. He regularly provides insurers and companies with case valuation or corporate reserve-setting opinions in high-dollar matters not being handled by Womble Bond Dickinson.
Throughout his career, Kurt has advised clients on advertising and marketing regulations, including practical guidance to navigate overlapping federal, state, and industry requirements. He also has broad experience defending clients in matters that involve federal and state statutes, including numerous consumer protection laws, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, and Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) requirements involving reporting, recalls, warnings, and other regulatory concerns, among many others.
Kurt’s clients have global footprints and worldwide concerns, including multinational companies such as Toyota Tsusho America, Honeywell, BioTE Medical, Fresenius Medical Care, Eaton Corporation, John Deere, and R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company.
Presentations and Publications
- A Scientific Look at the Impact of Sugar, FDLI Food Advertising, Labeling, and Litigation Conference, September 26, 2019
- Understanding the Legal Reqiurements for Food Labeling and Responsibilities for Labeling Nutritional Content and Allergens, BRCGS Food Safety Americas Conference, May 22, 2019
- Kurt Weaver and Katherine Briel, Lawyers Can No Longer Be Anti-Social!, Thomson Reuters Westlaw, Nov. 27, 2018
- Developing Strategies for the Dietary Supplement Industry to Address GMO Labeling Laws and Prepare for a Possible Federal Standard, American Conference Institute/Council for Responsible Nutrition, 4th Regulatory and Compliance Forum on Dietary Supplements, June 28, 2016
- Obesity and Food ‘Addiction:’ Are Sugar, Salt and Fat the New Nicotine, 2014 FDA & USDA Compliance Boot Camp, September 29, 2014
- When Regulation Can Lead to Litigation: Top Issues in Food and Dietary Supplements, DRI/2014 Products Liability Annual Meeting, April 10, 2014
- The Management of Outside Counsel & The Use of Virtual Law Firms, NC CLE Symposium/WCSR, May 8, 2012
Civic and Professional Activities
- Food and Drug Law Institute, Member, 2016 – Present
- Food and Dietary Supplements Committee, 2017 – 2019
- Food Advertising, Labeling, and Litigation Committee, 2019 – 2021
- Council for Responsible Nutrition, Associate Member, 2015 – 2019
- Legal Committee, 2016 – 2018
- American Bar Association, Committee on Food, Cosmetics and Nutraceuticals, 2016 – 2018
- United Way of the Greater Triangle, Board Chair, 2010-2011; Board of Directors, 2004 – 2012
- Leadership Raleigh XVII, 2002
Honors and Awards
- Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America (BL Rankings), Commercial Litigation, 2018 – Present
- Leadership Raleigh Hall of Fame, Inductee, 2012
Any result the lawyer or law firm may have achieved on behalf of clients in other matters does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.
- Lead counsel representing a chemical manufacturer in multidistrict litigation brought against the entire supply chain involved in per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF). The litigation involves nearly 2,000 separate lawsuits filed by individuals, states, municipalities, and private companies alleging product liability, personal injury, trespass, nuisance, and environmental contamination claims. MDL 2873 began in 2018 and is centralized in the District of South Carolina.
- Lead counsel representing a multinational conglomerate in multidistrict litigation containing over 1,200 lawsuits alleging that firefighter turnout gear is defective because it contains chemicals may increase the risk of injury or disease. Also part of MDL 2873 in the District of South Carolina.
- Lead counsel representing a university in connection with multidistrict putative class action litigation alleging that collegiate institutions, athletic conferences, and the NCAA failed to warn football players of the adverse effects of concussions. The MDL, which began in 2016, is pending in the Northern District of Illinois.
- Representing rural telephone carriers in a putative class action to recoup unpaid access fees from a major mobile telecommunication company after it admitted to disrupting billions of calls and alleging a nationwide conspiracy perpetuated against its own customers in order to deter them from making phone calls to rural America.
- Defended consumer products manufacturers in 13 separate multi-week jury trials in a five-year period, serving as first chair lawyer in 11 of the 12 cases. These matters included wrongful death lawsuits seeking tens of millions of dollars in compensatory and punitive damages.
- Obtained a complete defense verdict in favor of R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in a business tort case brought by 37 Missouri hospitals claiming $477 million in unreimbursed healthcare costs, in addition to punitive damages.
- Obtained a $24 million sanctions award against Kansas City’s largest hospital system in 2011 for discovery misconduct in the largest case ever tried in the Circuit Court for the City of St. Louis, Missouri.
- Represented a hormone optimization company in personal injury litigation involving claims of product liability and negligence.
- Represented a Fortune Global 500 medical services company in internal investigations, strategic defense options and potential liability assessments.