South Carolina

Anne McGinness Kearse

Anne McGinness Kearse

With a passion for justice, Anne McGinness Kearse has spent more than a decade seeking to hold accountable numerous corporations that put profits before safety. Through litigation, Anne seeks the implementation of better safety practices and corporate governance measures for those corporations, as well as just compensation for victims of toxic exposure, extreme and life-altering injuries, workplace injuries, severe burns, brain damage, loss of limb and paralysis, as well as wrongful death resulting from negligence and defective products.

Anne works closely with victims and their families, often meeting with them in their homes for consultations. She strives to provide each client with personalized attention and individual justice, whether the case is part of a class action or stands alone. Anne believes in building relationships with co-counsel and often collaborates with other attorneys, including estate and probate counsel, in order to approach each case from a team perspective.

Anne represents workers diagnosed with the devastating disease mesothelioma caused by asbestos exposure in the chemical, electric power generation, steel or construction industries. She also represents victims of household exposure—children and spouses who developed mesothelioma or other asbestos-related diseases after being exposed to asbestos fibers that a family member unwittingly brought home from work on clothes or belongings. Anne has tried several noteworthy asbestos cases, including Cox vs. A&I Company, West Virginia’s first household asbestos exposure case, and the 2002 West Virginia Consolidated Asbestos Trial against Union Carbide in which unsafe working conditions were found at its plants throughout the state. In addition to maintaining an active trial schedule, Anne represents Canadian Workers’ Compensation Boards in U.S. courts to recoup benefits they paid Canadian asbestos victims.

While in law school, Anne supported the team representing the State Attorneys General in the historic lawsuit against Big Tobacco, which resulted in the largest civil settlement in U.S. history. After graduation, she was a member of the trial team that litigated Falise v. American Tobacco Company.

Well-versed in navigating complex litigation, Anne holds several leadership positions within the firm, managing legal teams associated with occupational disease, toxic exposure and severe personal injury. Anne has written several articles of interest to the plaintiffs’ bar and frequently speaks on asbestos litigation, general product liability, legal ethics and tort reform at seminars across the country. She has been published on major legal issues, including forum non conveniens and defective products abroad, corporate misconduct, medicolegal aspects of asbestos litigation and mass tort litigation. Anne co-authored the 12th chapter of the book, “Pathology of Asbestos-Associated Diseases” Medicolegal Aspects of Asbestos-Related Diseases: A Plaintiff’s Attorney’s Perspective, 3rd ed., 2014). Edited by Victor L. Roggli, MD; Tim D. Oury, MD, PhD; and Thomas A. Sporn, MD, this publication is a comprehensive asbestos reference book used by both physicians and attorneys.

Anne currently serves as the Vice President of the Public Justice Foundation, a charitable organization focused on protecting people and the environment and increasing access to justice. In 2011, Anne served on the Executive Board for a local chapter of Safe Kids USA, advocating for childhood injury prevention. Anne was a University of South Carolina School of Law bronze Compleat Award recipient in 1998 and is recognized as a BV® rated attorney by Martindale-Hubbell®.

Awards and Accolades:

Benchmark Plaintiff
2013 National “Litigation Star”: mass tort/product liability – plaintiffs
2012–2014 South Carolina “Litigation Star”: mass tort/product liability – plaintiffs
2014 Top 150 Women in Litigation list: South Carolina: mass tort/product liability – plaintiffs

The Best Lawyers in America®
2011–2014 Mass tort litigation/class actions – plaintiffs

The National Trial Lawyers
2010 Top 100 Trial Lawyers™: South Carolina

The Legal 500 United States
2009, 2011–2012 Mass tort and class action: plaintiff representation – toxic tort

2013–2014 South Carolina Super Lawyers® list


American Association for Justice, Chair – Committee on Asbestos Education; Chair – Section of Toxic, Environmental and Pharmaceutical Torts (STEP)
American Bar Association
South Carolina Association for Justice
, Board of Governors; Chair – Women's Caucus
Litigation Counsel of America Trial Lawyer Honorary Society
Order of the Coif
Order of the Wig and Robe
John Belton O’Neal Inn of Court
American Inns of Court, James L. Petigru Chapter
Public Justice Foundation
, Vice President

* The Best Lawyers in America® 2014 (Copyright 2014 by Woodward/White, Inc., of Aiken, S.C.)

* Please remember that every case is different. Although it endorses this lawyer, The Legal 500 United States is not a Motley Rice client. Any result we achieve for one client in one matter does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.