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Richard Shapiro, Partner with Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp Personal Injury Law Firm

Richard Shapiro

Partner with Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp Personal Injury Law Firm

Rick Shapiro has practiced personal injury law for over two decades in Virginia, North Carolina, and throughout the Southeastern United States. He is a Board Certified Civil Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy (ABA Accredited) and has litigated injury cases throughout the eastern United States, including wrongful death, trucking, faulty products, railroad, and medical negligence claims. His success in and out of the courtroom is a big reason why he was named 2019 “Lawyer of the Year” in railroad law in U.S. News & World Report's Best Lawyers publication (Norfolk, VA area). He has been named a “Best Lawyer” and “Super Lawyer” by those peer-reviewed organizations for many years. Rick is also a recipient of the National Board of Trial Advocacy (NBTA) 2023 President’s Award.

Rick has been involved in personal injury cases, with co-counsel, in every southeastern state, and in many other eastern USA states, and has tried dozens of major injury cases to verdict, a number with multi-million dollar verdicts.

He has written and lectured on evidence law to the AAJ, VTLA, and Georgia TLA, as well as to Virginia lawyers. Rick was elected chair of the Railroad Law section of the American Association for Justice (AAJ) twice (2013-2014 and 2005-2006) and was named President of the Railroad Accident Division of the National Trial Lawyers Association (NTLA 2013-14). 

Rick is also a prolific U.S. inventor and designer of consumer-wheeled products, holding 18 US patents and numerous foreign patents, and is an international award-winning fiction thriller author, who wrote an Amazon #1 best-selling suspense novel.  Check out an interview with Rick about his fiction thriller, Taming the Telomeres."

To reach Rick, call our toll-free number, 1-800-752-0042, or fill out a quick contact form which will be forwarded to Rick for review.

Professional Accolades

  • Recognized "Best Lawyer" by U.S. News & World Report (since '10)
  • 10.0 perfect rating on Avvo, a lawyer-rating service
  • Board Certified by the National Board of Legal Specialty (ABA Accredited)
  • ​Why Being Board Certified is So Important
  • Selected to the "Top 100 Trial Lawyers" of Virginia, by the National Trial Lawyers
  • Recognized as a Top 10 Trial Lawyer for truck accident litigation by the National Trial Lawyers' Trucking Association
  • "AV" Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell
  • Recognized as a "Super Lawyer" by Law & Politics Magazine (since '10)
  • Chairman of the American Association of Justice Railroad Section (two terms)
  • Executive Committee Member for the Railroad Trial Lawyers Association
  • Selected to Who’s Who in American Law (2009)
  • American Inventor, granted more than 18 U.S. Patents, with several licenses granted.
  • Author of Amazon #1 Best Selling Suspense Thriller, Taming the Telomeres.


Richard N. Shapiro received his college degree from the University of Maryland, served as staff assistant to U.S. Congressman Whitehurst, and graduated from George Mason Law School With Distinction. Rick also served as a member of the George Mason University Law Review, from 1982-1984. He had an article published in the Law Review's 1984 publication.

Presentations & Speeches

  • Rick has lectured nationally and locally before lawyers with the AAJ, VTLA, and GTLA, for Virginia CLE on evidence law and railroad/FELA law, and published an article entitled "Using Medical Evidence to Maximize Personal Injury Case Damages, in the VA Trial Lawyers Law Letter Vol. 21, No. 1 (2009).
  • Invited Presenter:  AAJ Seminar on Railroad Release Law (June 2009), and has been an invited speaker at a number of national and regional lawyer seminars.
  • Invited Presenter: AAJ National Lawyer's Seminar on Corporate Representative Depositions (February 2012).
  • Invited Presenter: "End Distracted Driving", Jamestown High School in Williamsburg, VA (January 2013).
  • Invited Presenter: "Focus Groups", Virginia Trial Lawyers Advocacy Seminar (October 2019). 

Prominent Reported Legal Decisions

  • Ratliff v. Norfolk Southern Railway Co., 2009 WL 649268 (March 12, 2009) (Link to WV Supreme Court Opinion)
  • Payne v. CSX Transportation, Inc., No. 2-231-07, (Dec. 27, 2013) (Link to June 2015 TN Supreme Court Opinion)
  • Bilenky v. Ryobi Technologies, Inc.,, No. 2:13-cv-00345 (E.D. Va. June 26, 2015) (Link to Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals opinion upholding $2.5 million jury verdict)


  • Railroad Health & Safety; a Litigator’s Guide, Co-Author, 72 Am. Jur. Trials, p.1 (West). 
  • Using Medical Evidence to Maximize Personal Injury Case Damages, The Journal of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, Vol. 21, No. 1, 39-46 (2009).
  • Statistics Evidence in Injury Cases: Excluding It or Infusing It in Direct Exam?, The Journal of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, Volume 23, No. 2, 3-6 (2012) (Link to article here).
  • Author and Editor for The Legal Examiner.
  • Top 10 Civil Justice Stories (2016 & 2016), The Legal Examiner, 2015 and 2016. 
  • Top 10 Civil Justice Stories (2017), The Legal Examiner, Part One and Part Two.
  • Preserving Survival Damages - When Your Case Morphs Into a Wrongful Death Action, The Journal of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, Vol. 27, No. 3, 2-5 (2019) (Link to article here). 

Bar Admissions

  • Virginia
  • North Carolina
  • West Virginia
  • Washington, D.C.

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • 4th Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Numerous Federal Courts

Articles by Richard Shapiro