Our Firm History
Sedgwick has come a long way from its modest beginnings as a two-attorney law firm to our current status as an international trial firm with 14 offices, dozens of practice areas and 250 attorneys worldwide.
During the 1960s and ’70s, multiplaintiff litigation led to mass tort litigation involving class actions and multidistrict and market share litigation. Sedgwick was repeatedly selected as lead counsel to represent local, regional and national interests in these cases. In 1979, we opened our Los Angeles office in order to serve an expanding Southern California client base.
The 1980s saw rapid expansion of our firm, fueled by that decade's economic boom and an increasingly complex business and legal environment. New practice areas were added to complement our traditional general litigation practice, including product liability, toxic tort, drug and medical device litigation, construction, environmental, employment, entertainment, healthcare, insurance and reinsurance, intellectual property law, and corporate and transaction practices.
In February 1985, our New York office was opened to serve clients in the areas of fidelity and surety law and pharmaceutical product liability litigation. As corporate markets became increasingly global in nature, we opened an office in London in 1985. In 1988, our firm expanded its Southern California presence with a new office in Orange County. We rounded out a decade of growth by opening an office in Chicago in December 1989.
Our Newark, New Jersey office opened in January 2001 to provide complex class action and mass tort litigation services for industrial, chemical and pharmaceutical clients. Our second office expansion in 2001 was marked by our entry into the Dallas market.
In 2006, we increased our presence in Texas by opening offices in Austin and Houston to serve our media, entertainment and sports clients. Both offices have since added attorneys with extensive experience in commercial, mass tort and environmental resources litigation.
Our Ft. Lauderdale office opened in 2009. The attorneys in this office extended the firm's existing product liability, intellectual property, commercial, media and class action capabilities into the Southeast.
2011 saw the expansion of our firm into the Pacific Northwest and Mid-Atlantic regions with the opening of our Seattle and Washington, D.C. offices. Sedgwick's Seattle attorneys focus on product liability and insurance and commercial litigation with an emphasis on matters related to aviation, consumer products and toxic torts. Our D.C. attorneys have extensive experience in complex litigation with an emphasis on product liability, environmental, commercial tort and regulatory matters.
Sedgwick strengthened its legal presence with the addition of a second South Florida location in 2013. We opened our Miami office which focuses primarily on complex personal injury defense cases and commercial litigation.
In 2014, the firm transitioned its Finance, Human Resources, Information Technology, Knowledge Management, Marketing and New Business functions to a new Shared Services Center in Kansas City, Missouri.
Sedgwick’s geographic platform and broad-based practice areas allow us to serve our clients nationally and worldwide.