HAWKINS COUNSEL GROUP

   302.635.1511

CIVIL RIGHTS AND PERSONAL INJURY ATTORNEY

                                 Willan Joseph, Esq.

                             

Willan has a broad range of experience in areas as diverse as handling civil rights cases, including unconstitutional searches and seizures, drunk driving accident/personal-injury cases, employment discrimination and sexual harassment cases, equal pay and overtime pay claims, medical malpractice cases, litigating civil rights and employment-based claims, including disability cases under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), in Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, and New York jurisdictions. He has defended small business clients in employment-related claims, including alleged wrongful terminations, unemployment, and Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (‘ERISA”) claims, for example, allegations of withdrawal liability upon third-party termination from a pension plan. See, The Pension Plan of the National Retirement Fund v. Sedo Sanchez Enterprises v. American Airlines, Inc., et al; 13-cv-2436 (SDNY).

Handled pension entitlement claims for expats from United Kingdom, as well as immigration-related claims for persons wishing to relocate to the UK. Litigated precedent-setting cases, including Breyer v. U.S.; 214 F.3d 416 (3d Cir. 2000), a derivative citizenship claim, asserting the rights of a decedent U.S. citizen mother. Her son, Johann Breyer was born in Czechoslovakia in 1925. Over 75 years later the U.S. government denied his claim for derivative citizenship, pursuant to section 1993 of the Revised Statutes of 1874, and a 1994 amendment to the Immigration and Naturalization Act ("INA"): section 101(c)(2) of the Immigration and Nationality Technical Corrections Act

("INTCA"). In particularly unique instances, both provisions contained a gender-based distinction for granting citizenship to children born to American citizens outside the United States. I successfully argued that the original statute violated equal protection, and that the 1994 amendment did not cure the violation, because at Breyer’s birth, the governing provision unlawfully discriminated against U.S. citizen women. In 1925, United States citizenship was bestowed upon the foreign-born children of American fathers only. Therefore, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals agreed, the offspring of American mothers, like Breyer’s, were unlawfully denied the same benefit. 

Served as an Associate at Montgomery, McCracken, Walker & Rhoads, Philadelphia, PA. Associate from 1991–1994 in the area of Employment Law Department. Representing management in labor and employment related matters, including union contract negotiations, immigration and worker’s compensation cases.

Education

J.D. City University, New York Law School at Queens College
B.A., Liberal Arts, College of New Rochelle, New York

Bar Admission

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania