Braden R. Lepisto was a top student and athlete who worked in law offices in California and Washington, D.C., before joining Kline & Specter, where he has won an impressive string of cases and was named a partner in 2022.
In his most recent case, Lepisto, as lead counsel, won an $11 million verdict in Luzerne County, Pa., against a dentist who failed to promptly refer a patient for a biopsy after noticing a sore on her tongue, with the delay resulting in Stage IV cancer and surgical removal of part of the patient’s tongue. The February 2024 verdict included $8 million in punitive damages. (Article coming)
A year earlier, Lepisto achieved another $11 million result, a settlement with Tabor Community Partners, a Philadelphia community umbrella agency, for its failure to oversee a baby’s care, a failure that led to horrific child abuse. The child suffered a traumatic brain injury resulting in quadriplegia and blindness. (See media coverage)
Lepisto was co-counsel in a trial that produced a $120 million jury verdict — including $100 million in punitive damages — against Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon Inc. for injuries suffered by a woman implanted with a vaginal mesh device. The verdict in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court was the largest to date in the national vaginal mesh litigation and the largest contested liability personal injury verdict in Pennsylvania history. (Read article)
In 2022, Lepisto obtained a $2.75 million settlement for a man who suffered a hypoxic brain injury following cardiothoracic surgery. The retired man recovered physically but now lives with deficits in his executive functioning.
Also in 2022, Lepisto achieved a $1.2 million settlement for the family of a 58-year-old man who died after hitting his head in a fall at a Philadelphia-area hospital because precautions were not taken by nurses to prevent the accident despite the patient’s impaired mobility and previous falls.
Lepisto, with co-counsel, secured a $1.53 million settlement in the same year for a man who had a below-the-knee amputation due to negligent medical care at a central Pennsylvania facility.
In 2021, Lepisto achieved a $1 million settlement for the family of a Philadelphia woman who died in a rehabilitation center. After undergoing throat surgery to remove a cancerous growth, providers at the center failed to suction the woman’s tracheostomy tube, leading to respiratory arrest and death.
In another matter, Lepisto successfully negotiated sizeable settlements for two motorcycle riders killed in separate accidents, one caused by a drunk driver and the other by a driver who made an unsafe turn. In another case, Lepisto obtained a settlement for a young man permanently injured in a fireworks mishap.
In 2018, he settled a case for $3 million for a mentally disabled woman who was left untreated – including as she lay on the floor for 48 hours — in an Ambler, Pa., community group home run by a large company. The woman, 34 years old at the time of the 2012 incident, was later diagnosed with a spinal cord compression that had caused lower paraplegia. Her permanent injuries included drop foot, a walking abnormality that has left her wheel-chair bound.
In 2017, Lepisto was lead counsel at a trial that resulted in an $870,000 jury verdict — including $250,000 in punitive damages — for a central Pennsylvania man who suffered the removal of the wrong testicle during surgery. The verdict was the largest in a medical malpractice case in Huntingdon County in at least 25 years. (Read about the case)
Because of his accomplishments, Lepisto has been selected by Pennsylvania Super Lawyers for seven consecutive years, from 2017-2023, as a Rising Star, designating him as among the top 2.5 percent of attorneys in the state who are 40 or younger or practicing 10 years or less.
In addition to his recent legal victories, Lepisto in late 2015 helped obtain a $1 million settlement for the family of a man who died after a police car crashed into his vehicle in Williamsport, Pa. As a condition of the settlement, the city also agreed to make changes in its police pursuit procedures. The offending officer was fired.
Prior to that case, Lepisto was lead counsel at a trial that resulted in a $260,000 jury verdict for the family of an 83-year-old woman who died at St. Joseph's Hospital after staff there failed to monitor her vital signs as she suffered an acute aspiration event. The verdict, in Philadelphia Common Pleas Court, was considered exceptional considering that the patient had had a number of serious pre-existing illnesses. (Read article)
The University of Pennsylvania Law School graduate worked summers in impressive law offices, first as a law clerk assisting the supervising attorney in the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Office, where he devised a manual for defending public entity liability claims. Lepisto (pronounced LEP-ĭs-tō) also worked as a summer associate with the 1,000-lawyer international law firm Dewey & LeBoeuf LLP, in Washington, where he performed legal research, drafted discovery documents and created a presentation explaining the complexities of shareholder derivative actions which was published in the Securities Litigation Report.
Lepisto began his law school at Pepperdine University, where he won the CALI Excellence for the Future Award for earning the top grade in first year Torts. He was a member of Phi Alpha Delta, the international legal fraternity, and also was invited to join the Pepperdine Law Review and the School of Law Honor Board.
Lepisto transferred and graduated from Penn Law, where he was senior editor for university’s Journal of Business Law. He was also a board member of the Employee Advocacy Project, where he managed unemployment compensation cases for clients. (He also earned an A+ in the course “Practice of Law,” taught by his future employer, Shanin Specter.)
Lepisto did his undergraduate work at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, where he earned a B.S. in economics. At Penn, he also ran track (400 hurdles) and was a football star, playing varsity all four years and twice earning All-Ivy League honors as a wide receiver. Lepisto finished his football listed on Penn’s Top 10 all-time list for receptions and receiving yards, with 102 catches (6th best) and 1,283 yards (8th). He is an alumni interviewer for the Penn Alumni Interview Program.
Lepisto is licensed to practice in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. He is a member of the Philadelphia Trial Lawyers Association and its Future Leaders Committee as well as the Pennsylvania Association for Justice (PAJ). He recently co-authored the foreword for PAJ's 63-page handbook titled "MedMal for Beginners." (Read the handbook)
Braden Lepisto In The News:
Philly jury slams J&J with $120M award in mesh injury case, Law360, 4/24/19
Pa Woman Awarded $120 Million In Vaginal Mesh Case, WPMT, 4/26/19
Philadelphia Jury Slams J&J With $120M Pelvic Mesh Verdict, The legal Intelligencer, 4/25/19
Pa woman awarded $120 million in vaginal mesh case against J&J, The Philadelphia Inquirer, 4/25/19
He underwent surgery to remove his right testicle. When he woke up, his left one was missing, The Washington Post, 6/15/17
Man with wrong testicle amputated awarded $870,000 in Huntingdon County, The Legal Intelligencer, 6/15/17
Ouch! Jury awards $870K to man whose doctor removed the wrong testicle, PennLive, 6/15/17