Douglas Sheff

Sheff Law Offices, P.C.
10 Tremont St Fl 7Th
Boston, MA 2108
(617) 227-7000

Douglas Sheff is the only attorney in Massachusetts’ history to have held the positions of President of the Massachusetts Bar Association, President of Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys, Governor of the American Association for Justice and Trustee of the National College of Advocacy, highlighting his local and national accomplishments and commitment to the betterment of the practice of law and public service.

He has extensive experience in all aspects of personal injury law and has earned a reputation for obtaining consistent, superior recoveries for his clients. He focuses his practice on representing victims of traumatic brain injury, wrongful death, construction site, trucking accidents, workplace accidents, and defective products. He has received numerous honors and awards for his work as a lawyer, a consumer advocate and an educator. He is a nationally renowned brain injury litigation expert. An accomplished writer and speaker, Mr. Sheff regularly educates other attorneys, both inside and outside of Massachusetts, on issues regarding personal injury and he appears on television, radio and in print media frequently as a legal expert or on behalf of clients in high profile cases.

Sheff was the President of the Massachusetts Bar Association, the largest statewide Bar Association in Massachusetts, founded by Oliver Wendell Holmes and Louis Brandeis. He and others worked for years to help the courts obtain necessary funding. In his Presidential year, Massachusetts judges received a long overdue pay raise. Sheff founded and is chairing the MBA Workplace Safety Task Force (“WPSTF”), which has brought about positive changes, including legislative changes, that protect workers in Massachusetts. The WPSTF has brought together leaders from the legal, business, government and medical fields as well as grass roots worker advocacy groups in order to improve safety in the workplace. Sheff helped to spearhead a successful effort to pass a law that protects 100,000 workers from abuse and dangerous work conditions every year.

Sheff also Chairs The Traumatic Brain Injury Task Force, addressing the needs of countless individuals who are victims of Traumatic Brain Injury (“TBI”), inside and outside of Massachusetts. The Task Force includes members of the Bar and Judiciary, football players, doctors, government officials, etc.

Sheff works extensively with the Judiciary. For example, he was recently appointed by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court to assist in drafting the new Voir Dire rule, a historical advancement, designed to promote fairness and justice to all who litigate in Massachusetts Courts.

Sheff has done a great deal of pro bono work, including representation of the victims of the Boston Marathon bombings who suffered traumatic brain injuries.

He served as President of the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys (MATA), the leading organization in Massachusetts for Trial Attorneys representing victims of injury and death. He has chaired MATA’s Federal Legislation Committee for many years, and led leaders of the Massachusetts Bar on its annual “Cherry Blossom” trip to D.C., where attorneys meet with U.S. Senators and Representatives.

Attorney Sheff has been a leader of the American Association for Justice (AAJ) for decades. The AAJ is the largest and most significant organization in the Country for trial attorneys and a force for positive change and individual rights. He currently serves on the AAJ’s Board of Governors and the Traumatic Brain Injury Litigation Group Executive Committee. He was elected by his peers nationally to chair AAJ’s 100 State Delegates, and was later elected Chair of its Council of Presidents, representing fifty thousand attorneys nationwide.

Attorney Sheff served for six years as Trustee of the National College of Advocacy, which provides superior education and training for trial lawyers across the United States. Mr. Sheff is a member of Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, a group of attorneys who support consumer rights nationwide. He is a fellow of the Massachusetts Bar Foundation and a member of the Academy of Catastrophic Injury Attorneys.  Attorney Sheff is a Director of the Belli Society, a group recognized for innovative litigation techniques.

Through the years, Sheff has worked tirelessly on a range of cases within the fields of personal injury and wrongful death. Sheff Law’s record includes a plethora of seven and eight figure recoveries that have set new benchmarks in the field and made significant changes to health and safety-locally, nationally, and worldwide.

Sheff Law has led battles to assist consumers in their claims against manufacturers of defective products. Not satisfied simply with assisting their individual clients, the attorneys at Sheff Law utilized these claims to encourage manufacturers to change designs in order to promote greater safety measures for all users and consumers. Sheff Law was instrumental in a claim against a major auto manufacturer in its design of seatbelts. The failure to properly design the seatbelt left its client paralyzed. As a result of Sheff Law’s work, the seatbelt design was changed to prevent such tragedy and ensure greater public safety in the future. In another case, Sheff brought suit against a national automotive repair dealer with regard to the installation of tires and adherence to appropriate protocols. A multi-million-dollar result was obtained following an accident in which a motorist was struck by a tire that had disengaged from a second automobile. This too brought improvements to safety protocols and countless accidents have been avoided since.  Attorney Sheff is known to say, “we do the most good as lawyers when we help those whom we do not represent”, for his cases often impact countless people, beyond the parties.

Sheff Law has litigated cases that have led to changes made in the workplace. For example, Sheff Law recovered in excess of $7 million on behalf of a family of an Exxon employee who was killed at work. Following the case, Exxon instituted new measures to protect workplace safety for workers responsible for loading fuel tankers at its oil facilities. In another case, the firm recovered $14 million on behalf of the families of two workers killed in a tragic explosion. Again, critical changes were made and lives will be spared in the future.

For decades, Sheff Law has represented victims of traumatic brain injury. The firm has been utilizing cutting edge medical resources in order to assist clients in the determination of the nature and extent of their injuries and has been successful in obtaining superior recoveries on behalf of these victims. Recently, the firm recovered $10 million for a traumatic brain injury resulting from a motor vehicle accident as well as $5 million for a traumatic brain injury resulting from a building collapse. It even received $9 Million in a case where the brain injury occurred outside of the United States.

Sheff Law’s reputation has it made it a “to go” firm for high profile cases as well. Recently Sheff undertook the representation of Odin Lloyd’s family in its wrongful death case against the estate of infamous New England Patriot, Aaron Hernandez, who was convicted of murdering Lloyd and then committed suicide. The firm also represents all of the victims of the tragic Lowell fire of 2014, the worst in Massachusetts in two and a half decades. Sheff has used the courts as well as the media, in these cases and others, to demonstrate to the public the importance of our Civil Justice System.

Mr. Sheff now appears quite frequently in the media as an expert or attorney representing clients in significant cases. He also educates attorneys nationwide on any number of subjects and serves as a mentor to many younger lawyers, both locally and nationally.

Mr. Sheff has received a number of awards for his work on behalf of clients and the practice of law. He received the AAJ Next Generation Award for his multi-generational efforts to further the practice of law. He was chosen as the recipient of the Middlesex County Bar Association’s Outstanding Service Award for his leadership in developing public awareness of traumatic brain injury and for his lifelong commitment to equal justice under the law. He received the ORT Award for integrity in the law. He is consistently named in the Super Lawyer Edition of Boston Magazine. He received MATA’s first annual Excellence in Advocacy Award for his work with victims of traumatic brain injury. He has been recognized in the publication, Lifesavers, for preventing injury through aggressive representation of victims of defective products. He received the prestigious Wiedeman Wysocki Award on seven separate occasions for his advocacy on behalf of individuals and families injured by the negligence of others.

Sheff Law’s rich history and accomplishments have allowed it to enjoy great success while setting an example for lawyers everywhere who seek justice for their clients in the courtroom, the legislature and in the public. Sheff Law continues to fight for working families against big business. The attorneys at Sheff Law are known throughout the Country as true leaders in the law and are proud to continue the firm’s tremendous legacy.

J.D., Boston College Law School, Newton, Massachusetts, 1984
B.A., University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, 1980

Bar Admissions
Massachusetts (1984)
United States District Court, Massachusetts (1985)
United States Court of Appeals (1986)

Professional Organizations
Massachusetts Bar Association, Past President
Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys, Past President
American Association for Justice, Board of Governors
Traumatic Brain Injury Litigation Group
Belli Society, Member of Board of Directors
Massachusetts Workplace SafetyTask Force, Chair
Traumatic Brain Injury Task Force, Chair
National College of Advocacy, Diplomate
Massachusetts Bar Foundation, Fellow
Trial Lawyers for Public Justice, Member
Academy of Catastrophic Injury Attorneys (ACIA), Member

Awards & Recognitions
2015 MATA President’s Award
2014 Middlesex County Bar Association’s Outstanding Service Award
Massachusetts Super Lawyers, 2009-Present
ORT Award, Integrity in the Law
Excellence in Advocacy Award, First Ever Recipient, MATA
Lifesavers Magazine
Next Generation Award, American Association of Justice’s,
Wiedemàn Wysocki Award, Six time recipient

Selected Articles
Massachusetts Lawyers Journal, August 2014- MBA President Douglas Sheff bids farewell but not goodbye
Massachusetts Lawyers Journal- March 2014- Supporting TBI Victims a “No Brainer”
Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys  Academy to present Presidents’ Award for Excellence in Advocacy to Douglas K. Sheff
Journal of the American Association for Justice  After the Settlement  Tying up loose ends
Massachusetts Lawyer’s Weekly  Overcoming Juror Bias With Focus Groups
Journal of the Association of Trial Lawyers of America  The Sheff Story  Partnership built on trust
AAJ Winter Convention- January 2008- Traumatic Brain injury-Proof of the Invisible
Subsequent Remedial Measures
Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly  MATA President Defends Plaintiffs’ Rights