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Three Willig, Williams & Davidson Attorneys Earn Workers' Compensation Law Specialty Certification

June 14, 2013

Certified Specialists in Workers' CompensationPhiladelphia labor, employment and workers’ compensation firm Willig, Williams & Davidson announced that Michael G. Dryden, Marianne H. Saylor and Paul M. Della Franco have been certified as specialists in the practice of workers’ compensation law by the Pennsylvania Bar Association Workers’ Compensation Law Section. Of only 38 certified workers’ compensation lawyers in Philadelphia, three of them are from Willig, Williams & Davidson.

In 2012, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court approved the PBA Workers’ Compensation Law Section as the first bar association entity in Pennsylvania to certify lawyers in the area of workers’ compensation law. The Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorneys had to demonstrate that at least 50 percent of their legal practice is in the specialty field of workers’ compensation, that they have practiced in the field for more than five years and that they actively participate in Mandatory Continuing Legal Education in workers’ compensation law and related fields. Dryden, Saylor and Della Franco also passed the certification examination that focuses on workers’ compensation law, rules and leading case law.

Dryden is the chair of Willig, Williams & Davidson’s workers’ compensation department. He also handles personal injury matters and helps manage the firm’s Heart & Lung Act and Act 534 cases throughout Pennsylvania, including occupational disease claims for cancer, heart disease and toxic exposures. Dryden successfully challenged pension offsets that employers assert against workers’ compensation in an attempt to reduce injured workers’ benefits. In addition, he trains union leadership on issues involving injured members and conducts educational seminars for union stewards. A 1993 graduate of Temple University School of Law, Dryden was named a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer, Philadelphia Magazine, 2010-2013, and a Pennsylvania Rising Star, 2005-2007.

Saylor is a partner in workers’ compensation department of Willig, Williams & Davidson and represents clients before Administrative Law Judges, Workers’ Compensation Appeal Board, and the Pennsylvania Commonwealth and Supreme Courts. In 2008, Marianne served as lead counsel in a Commonwealth Court matter that established the City of Philadelphia’s obligation to prove the percentage of its pension funding contribution in order to establish entitlement to an offset. As a result, the City is no longer entitled to reduce workers’ compensation benefits by 100 percent of pension benefits received. She graduated from City University of New York School of Law.

Della Franco is an associate in the Philadelphia office of Willig, Williams & Davidson and is a former defense litigator. He has successfully argued precedent-setting cases before the Commonwealth Court and the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, challenged the Commonwealth in an important Right to Know / Freedom of Information case. He has also litigated numerous cases before the Philadelphia Civil Service Commission. He attained his Juris Doctor from Villanova Law School.

“Our workers’ compensation attorneys are committed to providing clients with counsel and direction so that they can deal with their work-related injuries or illnesses,” said Managing Partner Deborah R. Willig. “We understand that the workers’ compensation system is very difficult to navigate, especially when someone is already dealing with a health issue and is out of work. Our workers’ comp attorneys walk clients through the process so they can maintain their dignity and focus on getting well by getting the medical treatment and financial benefits they deserve.”

Willig, Williams & Davidson’s work injury lawyers who practice in the area of workers' compensation limit their representation to the protection of injured workers. They use the firm’s wide-ranging union-side practice to help further the cause of providing safe working conditions and fair benefits for workers.

About Willig, Williams & Davidson – Willig, Williams & Davidson ( is one of the largest and most respected union-side labor law firms in the United States. The firm has offices in Philadelphia, Media, Jenkintown and Harrisburg, Pa., as well as Haddonfield, N.J. Founded in 1979, Willig, Williams & Davidson focuses on representing labor unions, employee benefit funds and individual working people and their families on a variety of legal fronts, including national, regional and local contract negotiations; dispute resolution through mediation, arbitration and litigation; tax and benefit law compliance issues; discrimination and other employment matters; prepaid legal services for union members; and workers’ compensation matters in Pennsylvania and beyond.

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