David C. Williams has a world of experience. A graduate of West Point, he served in Iraq, Bosnia and Germany as well as a non-military stint as an intern for a judge in the Republic of Botswana.
Williams was awarded the Army Commendation for Meritorious Service for duty during Operation Iraqi Freedom II, a theater of war in which he supervised the operational and combat readiness of 23 soldiers and led a convoy that placed radar teams in northeastern Iraq. Before that, he participated in missions in Bosnia.
Since joining Kline & Specter, Williams, past president of the Barristers' Association of Philadelphia, has worked on a number of important personal injury, medical malpractice and whistleblower cases. He was made a partner in 2017.
In his latest case, Williams won a $2.5 million verdict in 2021 for a college student who was raped while studying abroad. The verdict by a federal judge against a Rhode Island college followed a trial conducted entirely over Zoom due to the COVID pandemic. The verdict not only established new case law in Rhode Island but also may be considered by other federal courts in cases involving the protection of students in travel-abroad programs. (Read article)
In 2019, Williams represented a whistleblower in a case that resulted in a $41.6 million settlement by UTC Laboratories Inc. for allegedly paying kickbacks in exchange for lab referrals for pharmacogenetic testing and for billing Medicare for tests that were not medically necessary. Three of UTC’s principals also agreed to pay a total $1 million.
Williams represented a whistleblower in litigation that in 2018 resulted in a $16.2 million judgment against Orthopaedic and Neuro Imaging LLC for submitting false claims for Medicare reimbursement. The decision by a federal judge in Delaware found the company administered contrast dye during MRI scans on patients without required supervision by a physician. Under terms of the U.S. False Claims Act, the whistleblower's reward in the case was $2.9 million. (Read the government news release)
Also in 2018, Williams represented a whistleblower in which a hospice company paid nearly $5.9 million for wrongly billing Medicare for unnecessary care. According to federal authorities, SourthernCare Inc. placed patients who were not terminally ill into hospice and submitted claims for that more expensive treatment.
In another settlement, Williams represented a pharmacist who blew the whistle on Walgreen Co. (“Walgreens”) for allegedly submitting claims to Medicaid for stimulants such as Adderall, Ritalin, and Vyvanse without first verifying with the prescribing physician that the physician had prescribed the medicine for medically appropriate treatment, as is required. Walgreen agreed to settle the Wisconsin case for $3.5 million.
Williams represented a whistleblower in litigation in which an Arizona health system agreed to pay the United States government $5.85 million to resolve claims it overbilled Medicare using inflated employee work hours. The whistleblower in the case was to receive a $1.17 million reward. (Read news release)
In a personal injury matter, Williams was co-counsel in a case that resulted in a $10 million settlement in 2014 for the family of a 21-year-old mechanic who was crushed to death beneath a truck at a Philadelphia-area refinery. The lawsuit alleged that the refinery failed to implement vehicle maintenance procedures in compliance with government standards.
In the same year, Williams worked on whistleblower litigation that resulted in a $35 million payment to settle fraud allegations against a healthcare system and two Tucson hospitals. It was the largest-ever such settlement in Arizona, while the former healthcare system employee who blew the whistle was to get a nearly $6 million reward in the case. (Read article) In an earlier whistleblower case, Williams helped in tax fraud litigation that resulted in a $6.2 million settlement and a reward of more than $1.1 million for the whilstelblower. (Read more)
Also in 2014, Williams was co-counsel in a personal injury case that resulted in a $5.5 million jury verdict for a mentally disabled man who was rendered a quadriplegic after the commercial van in which he was riding struck a utility pole.
Williams has been chosen each year from 2013-2020 as a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer — Rising Star, which places him in the top 2.5 percent of attorneys in the state who are 40 or younger. In 2020, he received the "Best of the Bar" achievement award presented by the Philadelphia Business Journal upon review of its editorial board and a panel of independent judges. He was also honored in 2013 with a Diverse Attorney of the Year award given by The Legal Intelligencer to outstanding minority attorneys from across Pennsylvania.
Williams was co-counsel in a case that resulted in November 2013 in an $11.6 million settlement for a former University of Pennsylvania student left paralyzed after she fell 20 feet through a raised skylight/ventilation opening at an off-campus residence. (See news coverage) In another case, he was co-counsel with Shanin Specter in a suit against the Veterans Administration that resulted in a $17.5 million verdict for a former U.S. Marine who suffered a crippling stroke after a dental procedure in which his blood pressure had dropped sharply several times. (See Ellison)
Williams has long been active in the Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia and was elected to become its president, a role he assumed in September 2019 for one year; he is currently a member of the organization's executive board. Formed in 1950, the Barristers' addresses the professional needs and development of black lawyers through seminars, cultural events and publications and it takes a pro-active role in fighting injustices in society. As its president, Williams, among other things, helped lead the fight against unfair restrictions of Pennsylvania's mail-in voting system and testified before a City Council committee on legislation to provide access to free legal representation for residents facing eviction.
Williams also serves on the National Bar Association Board of Governors and as a member of the Truman National Security Project, a national security and leadership development organization based in Washington, D.C.
While in the armed forces, Williams also worked as a diversity admissions officer, a post in which he managed recruitment and mentorship of minority West Point candidates across 110 congressional districts spanning 11 states in the western United States.
After leaving the military, with a rank of captain, Williams attended the University of Pennsylvania Law School, where he was elected president of his class as well as vice president of the Black Law Students Association. He was also senior editor of the Journal of Constitutional Law. As class president, Williams delivered a speech at the 2010 University of Pennsylvania Law School graduation. (Watch the video)
While in law school, Williams did internships with the Civil Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, Federal Programs Branch, where he drafted memoranda on various issues, and also for Steptoe & Johnson, an international law firm based in Washington, D.C.
For another internship he prepared case summaries for Justice Maruping Dibotelo of Botswana and advised the justice regarding the application of principles of U.S. law to Botswanan legal jurisprudence.
Williams earned his undergraduate degree in international relations from the United States Military Academy at West Point, where he won the Colonel George K. Osborn III Award for Excellence in Political Science. He played intramural football at West Point and participated in the Sandhurst Military Competition.
- $2.5 million verdict awarded in rape case in trial conducted over Zoom, The Legal Intelligencer 2/8/21; Law360, The Providence Journal, 2/3/21
- Attorney fees awarded over improper removal of case, proceeds to be donated, Pennsylvania Law Weekly, 12/22/20
- Allegheny College sued over rape on campus, The Meadville Tribune, 7/30/2020
- Williams comments equity study of Philadelphia Courts, The Legal Intelligencer, 7/14/2020
- David Williams comments on legal challenge to Pennsylvania's mail-in voting restrictions, WURD Radio, 4/28/20
- Is it a Potential Qui Tam case? by David Williams, VERDICT Volume Winter 2018-19
- Kline, Guerrini, Williams win $11.6M premises liability settlement: The Legal Intelligencer 11/13/13; The Philadelphia Inquirer 11/13/13; The Daily Pennsylvanian 11/14/13
- PA needs False Claims Act, The Philadelphia Inquirer, 11/6/11