Meet Daniel Kagan
Attorney Daniel Kagan is one of Maine’s leading trial lawyers, with a record of jury verdicts and settlements in complex and difficult personal injury cases. A life-long Mainer, Dan connects well with clients and jurors from every walk of life. He thrives under pressure and, since joining Berman & Simmons in 1989, has often taken on controversial cases that play out in the public spotlight.
Dan practices law consistently at the highest intellectual level, with no loss of his Maine roots―he is a proud native of Bangor. Dan’s grandfather and father founded and operated Penobscot Shoe Company, which provided employment to generations of Penobscot, Somerset, and Piscataquis county families. Dan’s upbringing taught him the value of hard work, civic engagement, and the importance of making personal connections and developing authentic relationships with people.
Dan is one of several lawyers in the firm who have achieved jury trial verdicts in excess of $1 million. His statewide practice emphasizes serious and complex wrongful death, products liability and personal injury matters. With a particular interest in mechanical and design failures, Dan has won verdicts and settlements for victims killed or injured by all types of defectively designed machines, including vehicles such as ATVs, snowmobiles, motorcycles, cars, and trucks.
Dan has represented a widow from northern Maine whose husband was killed in a Fourth of July parade; the family of a special education teacher from Berwick who was killed by a teenage driver; the family of a 17-year-old from Oakland, who died at a haunted hayride attraction; the family of a man who died of exposure when his wheelchair became stuck in snow on a wintery day; and a woman hurt when her newly-installed wheelchair lift collapsed beneath her.
“I always felt that I had a good understanding of people, and found I was drawn to helping people solve their problems,” Dan says. “That naturally translated into a career in law. I love figuring out solutions to problems, and I’m happiest when I can win and give my clients the closure they need.”
Dan is a national leader as Governor of the American Association for Justice, which has recognized him with its Distinguished Service Award. He is also a Governor and past-president of the Maine Trial Lawyers Association. He is a leader in legal education as well, as a contributing author for the guide to Superior Court practice in Maine on the topic of trial advocacy.
Dan speaks frequently on tort law and trial advocacy at legal education seminars and has authored legal articles and commentary on a wide range of subjects, including maximizing recovery on complex cases, presentation of expert witnesses, and client communication.
Memberships & Distinctions
- Governor, American Association for Justice (AAJ) 1997–present
- Awarded AAJ Wiedemann & Wysocki Award for service to the legal profession and access to justice
- Awarded AAJ Distinguished Service Award for service to cause of access to civil justice
- Member, AAJ Public Affairs, Public Education, Finance committees
- Governor, Maine Trial Lawyers Association (MTLA), 1996–present
- President, 2009–2010
PUBLISHED ARTICLES, SELECT PRESENTATIONS, and INTERVIEWS
- Defining Moments in Brain Injury, Advocating for Your Patient (co-presentation with Jeffrey Barkin, MD), Brain Injury Association of America, Maine Chapter “Defining Moments in Brain Injury Virtual Conference,” October 2020
- Should Businesses Be Protected from COVID-19 Lawsuits, WGME-TV, (Portland, Me.), July 28, 2020
- Bluetooth Can Help Track COVID-19. Is Maine Using It?, WGME-TV, (Portland, Me.), June 24, 2020
- Attorneys Say 2 Maine Companies Are Responsible for Deadly Farmington Explosion, WGME-TV (Portland, Me.), June 24, 2020
- As Civil Cases Are Stalled by Coronavirus, Technology Keeps Them Going, SUN JOURNAL, (Lewiston, Me.), April 8, 2020
- Don’t Buy the “Coronavirus Lawsuit” Hoax, PORTLAND PRESS HERALD: MAINE VOICES, (Portland, Me.), May 12, 2020
- How Your Car’s Hidden ‘Black Box’ is Helping Maine Police — And Creating Privacy Concerns, WGME-TV (Portland, Me.), February 6, 2020
- 33,000 Maine Vehicles May Never Get Fix for Potentially Deadly Air Bags. Is Yours One? WGME-TV (Portland, Me.), October 28, 2019
- What Impeachment Means for Fair Trials in America, and Why You Should Care, PORTLAND PRESS HERALD: MAINE COMPASS, (Portland, Me.), January 29, 2020
- Promise Matters: Winning Pecuniary Damages in a Child’s Wrongful Death Claim, IN BRIEF (Berman & Simmons, Lewiston, Me.), Spring, 2019
- Yin/Yang: The View from Both Sides, Maine Trial Lawyers Association Seminar, 2017
- Identifying System Failures and Organized Chaos, IN BRIEF (Berman & Simmons, Lewiston, Me.), Winter, 2017
- Personal Watercraft Injury – Is There a Case?, IN BRIEF (Berman & Simmons, Lewiston, Me.), Summer 2013
- New Brain Injury Science Helps Clients, IN BRIEF (Berman & Simmons, Lewiston, Me.), Summer 2012
- Chronic Pain Case, IN BRIEF (Berman & Simmons, Lewiston, Me.), Fall 2011
- Before Embarking on the Rollercoaster of Amusement Park Litigation, Know What the Ride Has in Store, IN BRIEF (Berman & Simmons, Lewiston, Me.), Fall 2009
- Recreational Vehicle Negligence: Developing the Snowmobile Case, IN BRIEF (Berman & Simmons, Lewiston, Me.), 2008
- Defense Biomechanical Expert
- Odometer Tampering
- Mayhem on the Midway: Winning the Amusement Park Liability Case
- Pharmaceutical Manufacturer Liability Law
- School Safety – How Safe are our Schools