Tiffany A. Vrabac

Experience

Tiffany Vrabac is a liability attorney at Franklin & Prokopik’s Herndon, Virginia office, handling a variety of cases including liability defense, premises liability, and insurance coverage. She focuses her practice on bodily injury defense and premises liability claims.

While in law school, Tiffany served as a member of the NSU Trial Association, as well as participated in the Inns of Court, Palm Beach County Chapter. Tiffany was also a research assistant to Professor Timothy Arcaro. Tiffany was the lead law clerk at an insurance defense firm during her second and third years of law school.

Activities

In her free time, Tiffany enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, and exploring areas and attractions within the region.

Michael T. Essig

Experience

Michael Essig joined Franklin & Prokopik as counsel in February 2019 and focuses his practice on the defense of claims in the Richmond and Tidewater areas of Virginia.  Michael defends individuals and businesses in premises liability, construction, commercial trucking, and transportation claims.

Prior to joining F&P, Michael worked for another defense firm in the Richmond area, defending individuals, small businesses, and corporations from personal injury and property damage claims.  Michael has extensive experience in civil litigation in both state and federal court from the very start of a claim all the way through trial.  He also has experience defending insurance carriers and employers in workers’ compensation claims.

Activities

Michael is a member of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys and the Virginia Bar Association.  In his spare time, he enjoys following UVA sports, skiing, and spending time with his wife, son (soon to be sons, as another is on the way) and two dogs.

Elena G. Patarinski

Experience

Elena Patarinski joined Franklin & Prokopik’s newest office in Richmond, Virginia as an associate in June of 2017.  She focuses her practice on liability defense in the Richmond Metropolitan, Central Virginia, Southeastern Virginia, and Hampton Roads areas.  Elena’s clients range from national companies to small businesses which she defends against premises, products, construction, commercial trucking, and transportation liability claims.

During law school, Elena served as senior editor for the Natural Resources Law Journal and provided free tax preparation services to low-income individuals and families through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program.

Activities

Elena is a member of the Virginia Bar Association, the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys, and the Metropolitan Richmond Women’s Bar Association.  Outside of the office, she enjoys painting and loves to travel.

Aaron J. Cheatham

Experience

Prior to joining Franklin & Prokopik, Aaron Cheatham practiced civil litigation at a regional defense firm in Arlington, Virginia. There, he represented individuals, professionals, attorneys, retailers, manufacturers, shopping centers, construction companies, restaurants, and other local and national businesses in litigation, at the trial and appellate levels, in federal and state courts. Aaron focused his practice primarily in the areas of commercial litigation, liability defense, professional liability, premises liability, and insurance coverage. Earlier in his career, Aaron represented court-appointed clients in serious felony and misdemeanor cases and advocated on behalf of debtors before the United States Bankruptcy Courts

Aaron is a graduate of the University of Toledo College of Law. During law school, Aaron served as an intern at the Office of the Federal Public Defender. He also served as a judicial extern for the Honorable James G. Carr and the Honorable Jack Zouhary in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. 

Activities

Aaron is a Virginia native and member of the Virginia State Bar

G. Calvin Awkward, III

Experience

Prior to joining Franklin & Prokopik, Calvin Awkward, III spent two years as a clerk for the Honorable John H. Tisdale and the Honorable Theresa M. Adams in the Circuit Court of Frederick County, Maryland. He also spent five years working for a Bethesda based insurance defense firm.  Calvin brings his extensive knowledge of civil litigation, including construction, automobile liability, condominium and homeowners’ association litigation, subrogation, premises liability, first-party insurance defense and insurance coverage to Franklin and Prokopik.

Calvin graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from Washington and Lee University in 2006. While in school, Calvin was selected for Who’s Who Among College Students, a residential life member, member of Nabors Service League, and was a chair for several activities including the W&L Voter Registration Drive and Annual AIDS Awareness Fundraiser. Calvin was also a member of Chi Psi fraternity, serving as its Social Chair.

After graduation, Calvin attended Washington and Lee University, School of Law. During law school, Calvin was the third-year class president and served as a student attorney in the Community Legal Practice Center Clinic, providing legal services to low-income individuals in Rockbridge County, Virginia. Calvin remains active in the alumni association for Washington and Lee University as a class agent for the Law Class of 2009, member of the Law School Young Alumni Board, member of the Williams School of Commerce Young Alumni Council, and Reunion Co-Chair for the Law Class of 2009.

Awards and Distinctions

  • Maryland Super Lawyers Rising Star 2019

Activities

Calvin is a member of the Maryland State Bar Association, the Virginia State Bar Association, the District of Columbia Bar Association, the Bar Association of Frederick County and the Montgomery County Bar Association. He is native to Maryland and looks forward to attending more games hosted by Baltimore’s professional sports teams. He also enjoys attending concerts and theater events.

Lindsey A. Lewis

Experience

Lindsey Lewis joined Franklin & Prokopik as Counsel in June 2016 and focuses her practice on the defense of matters in Central and Southeastern Virginia, including the Richmond Metropolitan and Hampton Roads areas.  She previously was associated with the firm’s Herndon, Virginia office before locating to Richmond, Virginia, where she was an Associate at one of the Top 200 largest law firms in the U.S.   Prior to that, Lindsey began her career at a defense firm in the District of Columbia after clerking for the Honorable Michael P. McWeeny, Chief Judge of the Fairfax County Circuit Court.

Lindsey has extensive experience in civil litigation in the areas of automobile/transportation liability, employment, premises liability, and professional liability, including defense of medical malpractice and nursing home claims.  Her clients have ranged from multi-national companies to local small business owners.  She also has represented doctors, dentists, nurses, and other health care professionals in connection with investigations by the Virginia Department of Health Professions and professional regulatory boards.

Recent Reported Opinions

 BRENDA JOHNSTON v. WILLIAM E. WOOD & ASSOCIATES, INC., Virginia Supreme Court, Record No. 151160 (June 2, 2016) – The Virginia Supreme Court affirmed the Virginia Beach Circuit Court’s sustaining of Appellee’s Demurrer and dismissal of Appellant’s case with prejudice, upholding longstanding Virginia policy stating that no “advance” or specified length of notice is required when terminating an at-will employee.

TERESA PARKER v. WENDY’S INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION, 41 F.Supp.3d 487 (E.D. Va. 2014) – The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia dismissed with prejudice Plaintiff’s claims of negligent supervision and serving adulterated food in connection with a case wherein Plaintiff alleged that she choked on a foreign object.

Activities

Lindsey is a member of the Virginia Bar Association and currently serves as Vice-Chair of the Professional Liability Section of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys.

 

Nirav Patel

Experience

Prior to joining Franklin & Prokopik, Nirav Patel was a staff attorney with the Mississippi Department of Human Services.

Activities

In his spare time, Mr. Patel enjoys reading and spending time with his wife Alpa. Mr. Patel is an avid Toronto Maples Leafs fan and enjoys traveling.

Helen D. Neighbors

Experience

Helen Neighbors is a principal at Franklin &Prokopik and practices in the firm’s Herndon, Virginia office. She has been providing clients with a broad range of legal services for over 19 years. Specifically, Helen concentrates her practice on construction litigation, commercial transportation, auto, premises and products liability, employment law, and discrimination defense. She also handles insurance coverage disputes, including declaratory judgments to determine the existence of coverage and bad faith claims.

Helen has an extensive construction field practice, representing owners, general contractors, contractors, and subcontractors in a full range of cases. Additionally, she conducts investigations of construction site accidents.

Prior to joining F&P, Helen was employed with a major insurance carrier for 19 years, serving as an in-house attorney managing litigation in various states for the last eight of them.

 

Alex M. Mayfield

Experience

Alex Mayfield spent six years with an insurance defense litigation firm prior to joining Franklin & Prokopik.

During law school, Alex served on Law Review Staff and clerked for Justice Terri Livingston and Federal Magistrate Judge Charles Bliel. Prior to attending law school, Alex worked in congressional affairs and U.S. Department of Defense budgeting and liaison roles.

Activities

Alex is a member of the Fairfax Bar Association and the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys.

Joshua M. Hoffman

Experience

Josh Hoffman has more than a decade of experience successfully representing and defending individuals and corporations against liability and other claims for damages.   He specializes in the defense of auto and premises liability claims.   In addition, Josh has substantial experience responding to and directing Emergency Response activities to protect and shield carriers and drivers from liability.  He has also handled countless matters for his clients in state and federal courts and is also experienced practicing before state and federal appellate courts.

Awards and Distinctions

Josh serves as the Vice-Chair of the Professional Liability Section of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys.

Activities

Josh is a member of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys and the Fairfax County Bar Association.   He was a representative of the Student Government and a member of Sigma Pi Fraternity while at Wake Forest University.