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Gregory A. Gellner
Mr. Gellner graduated from West Liberty State College (B.S. 1984) and West Virginia University College of Law (J.D. 1987). He has been admitted to practice in all state courts in the state of West Virginia, the Southern and Northern District Federal Courts, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court. Mr. Gellner is also admitted in the state of Ohio.
Mr. Gellner formerly practiced with a large firm in Wheeling from 1987 to 1991. He then practiced as Gellner Law Offices from 1991 through 1994 and then with a partner from 1994 to 1998, after which time the firm returned to Gellner Law Offices.
The firm's practice is limited to personal injury and wrongful death litigation, including mining accidents, motor vehicle accidents, medical malpractice, pharmaceutical malpractice and pharmaceutical claims, product liability causes of action, and other injury matters, as well as insurance disputes and bad faith claims and disputes arising from leases for Marcellus or Utica Shale oil and gas.
Mr. Gellner has acted as an expert witness in complex insurance litigation and has lectured at continuing legal education seminars at the West Virginia University College of Law and through the West Virginia Association for Justice. Mr. Gellner has numerous reported appellate decisions in the state of West Virginia, as well as one in the state of Florida.
A recent important appellate decision in the state of West Virginia is Roberts v. Consolidation Coal Co., 539 S.E. 2d 478 (W.Va. 2000), which decision has altered the concept of comparative fault relative to employee versus employer cases, thereby eliminating any argument by the employer that the employee was partially at fault. This case was against Consolidation Coal Company, arising out of severe injury to a coal miner on a longwall mining operation. The result achieved by our firm in this case will assist all victims of on-the-job injuries or death.
The firm was successful in having the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals rule that medical malpractice defendants are not entitled to a jury instruction granting them the presumption that they acted within the standard of care in Matheny v. Fairmont General Hospital, Inc., 575 S.E. 2d 350 (W.Va. 2002). This decision overrules prior law and is beneficial to all plaintiffs in malpractice cases.
The firm recently acted as co-counsel in a Class Action in West Virginia against virtually every major pharmaceutical company in the United States alleging price fixing. The case was successfully settled with proceeds of the settlement going to community health care centers to purchase prescriptions for those unable to afford them.
In 2017 the firm resolved a what is believed to be one of the largest settlements in an employer “intentional tort” cause of action in West Virginia, with a settlement of $35 million. The case involved an industrial defendant and the unfortunate death of one person and the serious injury to two other workers.
The firm achieved a jury verdict of nearly $2.3 million in a health care privacy case against University Health Associates for the emotional harm and injury done to three former patients as a result of their employee's release of confidential psychiatric records and information contained in outpatient files at Chestnut Ridge Psychiatric Hospital (owned by WVU), in Morgantown, West Virginia. The case is K.C., et. al v. West Virginia Medical Corp., dba University Health Associates, Civ. Action No. 99-C-509, Circuit Court of Monongalia County. This verdict is believed to be the largest of its kind in the state of West Virginia.
The firm has successfully handled litigation against major insurance companies for their bad faith practices toward claimants, and settled multi-defendant medical malpractice cases, along with undertaking the representation of the families of three aviation accident victims. The firm recently achieved a bad faith insurance practices verdict in excess of $1.3 million. The firm also settled a wrongful death action arising out of the excessive serving of alcohol to a driver of a vehicle and an underage person which resulted in two deaths. In addition the firm continues to protect the rights of auto accident victims.
The firm obtained a monumental decision from the W.Va. Supreme Court. In the decision in STATE OF WEST VIRGINIA EX REL. JOHNSON & JOHNSON CORPORATION, V THE HONORABLE MARK A. KARL, JUDGE, DANIEL W. WILSON, M.D., AND ESTATE OF NANCY J. GELLNER, BY GREGORY A. GELLNER, EXECUTOR, appeal number 33211, June 27, 2007 the W.Va. Supreme Court refused to adopt the "learned intermediary" doctrine as related to prescription drug manufacturers. This means that prescription drug manufacturers have the same duty to warn consumers of risks of the product as any other manufacturer. They cannot hide behind the shield of the prescribing doctor in W.Va. and cannot claim that a warning to the doctor is all they need to accomplish, rather they have get the warnings to the persons who will actually be taking the prescription drugs and whose lives and health may be put at risk. This case has already had national implications in this area of the law.
The firm recently settled complex multi-defendant medical malpractice cases, including a brain injury claim resulting in a recovery of nearly $3.5 million. along with several insurance bad faith claims against insurance companies who wrongly denied the claims of their policyholders. Recently the firm resolved a serious motorcycle accident case involving complex insurance issues for $1.4 million. In 2016 the firm has resolved a very serious auto accident crash case for $3.0 million after several years of litigation in preparation for trial. We have also achieved settlements in excess of $6 million dollars for a single injured plaintiff in a malpractice case and successfully handled complex aircraft litigation in the state of New York.
Mr. Gellner was named to the elite group of "Super Lawyers" in 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 for the State of West Virginia. This honor is based upon recognition by other lawyers and a lengthy evaluation process. Less than 5% of the lawyers in West Virginia achieve this status.
The firm regularly acts as lead trial counsel, and accepts co-counsel referrals in the states of West Virginia and Ohio.
Mr. Gellner is a member of the following: the American Association For Justice, the West Virginia Association For Justice, and a member of its Board of Governors, the Ohio Association for Justice, the WV Bar Association, the Ohio State Bar Association, the Marshall County Bar Association, and he is a Past President of the Ohio County Bar Association. He is a past member of the West Liberty State College Alumni Board and the Ohio Valley West Virginia University Alumni Association. Mr. Gellner was appointed by Governor Bob Wise as a board member on the West Virginia Motorsports Council in 2004. In 2005 Mr. Gellner become a board of director member for the Wheeling Amateur Hockey Association, a local youth hockey association that has had over 15,000 children in its sports programs since it inception in 1963. Mr. Gellner is also the president and co-founder of the John Marshall High School Hockey Association that oversees a high school hockey program at that local high school and was honored as an inductee in to the John Marshall High School Wall of Fame in 2013. Mr. Gellner also races dirt late model stock cars. He is a life long resident of Marshall County. He and his wife Cathy have three children and are members of the Glen Dale United Methodist Church.
Areas Of Practice
- Personal Injury
- Catastrophic Injuries & Wrongful Death
- Auto Accident Injuries
- Product Liability
- Medical Malpractice
- Oil & Gas Injuries
- West Virginia, 1987
- Ohio, 1988
- U.S. Federal Courts, 1987
- U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Circuit
- U.S. Supreme Court
- West Virginia University College of Law, Morgantown, West Virginia
- J.D., Doctor of Jurisprudence - 1987
- West Liberty State College, West Liberty, West Virginia
- B.S., Bachelor of Science - 1984
- Honors: cum laude
- Honors: Top Student, Business Administration Management
Honors and Awards
- Super Lawyers, 2008-2018
- AV Preeminent rating by Martindale-Hubbell
Professional Associations and Memberships
- American Association for Justice
- West Virginia Association for Justice
- Ohio Association for Justice
- The West Virginia Bar Association
- Ohio State Bar Association
- The Ohio County Bar Association, Past President
- Marshall County Bar Association
- Wheeling Amateur Hockey Association, Member
- John Marshall High School Hockey Association, President and co-founder
- Theta Xi
- Delta Sigma Pi