Breit Cantor Grana Buckner
600 22nd St., Ste. 402
Virginia Beach, VA 23451
While he was in college, Jeffrey Breit worked with a Federal Court Judge in New Orleans, fueling his interest in the law. A native of the Tidewater area, Jeffrey's father, brothers, and wife have all been attorneys at one time or another. In 1988, he left the firm where his father had practiced and, together with Jack Drescher, started Breit, Drescher & Breit which later became Breit Drescher Imprevento. The firm focused on representing injured victims, something we still do today as Breit Cantor Grana Buckner.
After the April 20, 2010 BP/Deepwater Horizon explosion in the Gulf of Mexico, Jeffrey began a stint focused on working cases on behalf of menhaden fishermen. Hundreds of thousands of cases were consolidated in the Eastern District of Louisiana in New Orleans in MDL 2179. In October 2010, Judge Carl Barbier appointed 15 lawyers to the plaintiff steering committee in order to manage the litigation on behalf of all of the claimants. Jeffrey Breit was appointed by the judge to the steering committee and eventually Breit and seven members of the steering committee tried the case before Judge Barbier against the defendants BP, Halliburton, Transocean, Cameron, and others in what became the biggest environmental disaster in United States history and one of the biggest economic loss cases in history.
Jeffrey Breit was responsible for marshalling the case against Halliburton and after trial Halliburton settled its portion in the amount of $1,240,000,000 (one billion two hundred and forty million dollars). To date, over 250,000 businesses and individuals recovered more than $11.5 billion in economic losses; cleanup workers and coastal residents recovered over $67 million; community health grants were awarded in the amount of $105 million; tourism and seafood promotional grants were awarded $57 million; local government agencies were awarded $680 million; and $14 billion was awarded to the United States Government and Gulf of Mexico bordering states. The individual claims handled by Mr. Breit, which included menhaden settlements, BP business claims, lost wage claims, seafood claims, and medical claims were paid $29 million. Mr. Breit was also retained as one of the lawyers for the state of Alabama which recovered $1 billion dollars.
Since 2010, Jeffrey has been involved in litigation nationwide involving Chinese drywall Taishan Gypsum Co. In 2011, Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin Co. settled its nationwide Chinese drywall contamination suit for an amount in excess of $1 billion. The Chinese drywall cases continued against Taishan Gypsum with litigation in Louisiana, Florida and Virginia. In 2019, Taishan Gypsum settled all United States cases, including Virginia's, in a settlement of $248 million. More recently, after May 31, 2019, Jeffrey was appointed to manage the Virginia Beach tragedy fund where he distributed an excess of $4 million to victims.
As past president of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, Jeffrey has been instrumental in persuading Virginia's General Assembly to raise the cap on damages plaintiffs may receive in medical malpractice suits. Jeffrey has been characterized as tough, fair, and honest. According to Jack Harris, Executive Director of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association, [Jeffrey] personally met with legislators for months, helping them to understand the need to raise the medical malpractice cap, which had been frozen for 17 years. That was a major triumph. Hes driven to be the best and has had far-reaching accomplishments that will be felt for years to come.
Throughout his successful career, he has continued to work hard to improve the reputation of attorneys representing injured people as well as training the next generation of trial lawyers. Jeffrey is an adjunct professor of law at William & Mary Law School and has had the privilege to teach at Harvard Law School and Columbia Law School as well. Jeffrey is passionate about helping future litigators find their best selves, which in turn benefits the clients they will eventually represent. Under his tutelage, the William & Mary Law School Trial Team has been able to secure 29 champion, finalist, and semi-finalist titles in the last 10 years.
Jeffrey is an active member of American Associates for Justice (AAJ) and the Virginia Poverty Law Centers Advisory Council. Jeffrey has also been recognized by his peers as a Super Lawyer since the awards inception in 2006 as well as a Top 100 Virginia Super Lawyer since 2019 and a Top 10 Virginia Super Lawyer 2020-2021. In 2021, he was also recognized by Best Lawyers in America as Product Liability Litigation-Plaintiffs' Lawyer of the Year.