In This Section

Biography

When clients choose outside counsel to protect their interests, they often seek lawyers who are proven winners. Andrew has demonstrated a continued record of excellence, having won multiple high-risk defense verdicts at jury trials, obtained summary judgment in medical malpractice, employment, and premises liability cases, and successfully resolved lawsuits of all types for his clients. And while he thrives on winning, he understands that “winning” does not mean the same thing for every client. Therefore, he is highly sensitive to working in partnership with his clients to find strategies that fit with their risk tolerance and business goals.

Andrew is often called upon to be the first line of defense when challenging legal issues arise, not only due to his legal acumen, but also based on his sensitivity to forming strong client relationships. He deeply understands that responsiveness, availability, listening, and communication are key components of being a highly effective counselor and attorney. 

Andrew applies his skills for clients in a variety of industries. He routinely defends businesses, manufacturers, nursing homes, doctors, real estate appraisers, and insurance companies, often with a focus on medical malpractice, labor and employment, premises liability, and personal injury.  

Memberships & Awards

Professional
West Virginia Super Lawyers® Rising Star – 2019, 2020, 2021
Defense Research Institute
Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia, Medical Liability Substantive Committee
Student Articles Editor, Northern Kentucky Law Review
Bloom-Bettman Award for highest cumulative GPA, 2011, 2012
Bell Award for the highest grade in Constitutional Law, 2010
Graduated summa cum laude, Chase College of Law
Marshall University Magazine Writer of the Year, 2006
Marshall University Reporter of the Year, 2005

Key Experience

Successfully defended cases of employment discrimination before the EEOC and Human Rights Commission
Won defense verdict at jury trial in favor of emergency room physician in death of patient following discharge from emergency room
Successfully defended insured homeowner in jury trial alleging negligence by the homeowner leading to injuries to a third party

Work Experience

2013 Steptoe & Johnson PLLC
2011-2012 Law Clerk, Dressman, Benzinger, LaVelle psc
2007-2010 Managing Editor, BlockShopper

Speaking Engagements

SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS

"A Legal Patchwork: Employee Cannabis Use and the Workplace," American Cannabis Nurses Association (ACNA) Annual Conference, October 2021

"The COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate," Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), September 2021

"2021 Legislative Update," Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), May 2021

"Compliance and Employment Dangers Confronting Hospice Providers," Steptoe & Johnson PLLC, October 2020 (co-presenter)

"Regulatory and Compliance Round-Up," Steptoe & Johnson PLLC, September 2020 (co-presenter)

"2020 Legislative Update," Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), May 2020

"The 2019 Legislative Session and Implications for HR Professionals," Andrew Smith, Joshua Higginbotham (R-Putnam, 13th District) and Evan Worrell (R-Cabell, 18th District), Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), May 2019

“Attorney/Client Privilege,” National Association of Legal Assistants, January 2016

"Understanding and Managing Obligations Under the ADA," Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), February 2013

PUBLICATIONS

"The Medical Professional Liability Act: A Guide for the Legal Practitioner," West Virginia State Bar, West Virginia Practice Handbook, 2021 (co-author)

"Weathering the Storm: West Virginia Nursing Homes in the Age of COVID," Steptoe & Johnson Health Care, May 2021

"The Hazards of Crossing the Line: How Out of State Employers May Lose Workers’ Compensation Immunity While Temporarily Working in West Virginia," Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia (DTCWV), Notebook of Articles, 2016

"The Quandaries Associated with Quantifying Cyber Liability Losses," Defense Research Institute (DRI) “Covered Events,” 2016 Issue 1

"Insuring Marijuana: Complications with Insuring an Industry Growing Like a Weed," First Look: Issues and Developments in Insurance Law, Summer Edition 2015

"Criminal Background Checks: Lingering Questions Remain," Business & Legal Resources West Virginia Employment Law Letter, Vol. 20, No. 9 March 2015

"UM/UIM Coverage: A State-by-State Compendium Coverage: Ohio," Defense Research Institute (DRI), 2015 edition

"Reporting and Returning Overpayments: Complications, Risks and Headaches Under PPACA," American Health Lawyers Association (AHLA), Hospitals and Health Systems Rx., Volume 14, Issue 1, May 2012 (co-author)