Courtney Schulnick

Special Counsel

Courtney serves as Special Counsel in the firm's Casualty Department and litigates cases in both the local state and federal courts. Courtney handles lawsuits involving premises liability for homeowners and businesses, personal injury matters and automobile accidents.

Prior to joining Marshall Dennehey, Courtney had the unique experience of working as a judicial tipstaff in the Philadelphia County Court of Common Pleas.  As a judicial tipstaff, Courtney gained invaluable insight from judges and jurors, which she uses to her advantage when representing her clients at Marshall Dennehey.  Courtney is also a certified arbitrator in Philadelphia.

In an effort to better manage her anxiety and the stressors associated with litigation and life in general, she enrolled in the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Program offered at the Mindfulness Institute at Jefferson University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  Courtney noticed the ways in which the practice of Mindfulness increasingly enriched her life on both a professional and personal level.  A desire to deepen her own practice and share the gift of Mindfulness with others encouraged her to complete the MBSR Teaching Practicum, as well as the MBSR Teaching Internship at Jefferson University.  Courtney now pursues her passion of helping people by teaching Mindfulness so that they, too, can live more fully in the present moment and better serve not only their personal needs, but those of their clients.

Courtney earned her J.D. from Rutgers School of Law and a B.S. in Communications from the University of Pennsylvania.  Perhaps her greatest teachers of all time are her husband, and three young boys, with whom she enjoys spending time and exploring their hometown of Philadelphia.

 

Significant Representative Matters

Courtney recently appeared at the Philadelphia Arbitration Center to defend H & M in an alleged slip and fall incident.  Plaintiff claimed that due to Defendant’s negligence, she was caused to slip and fall on a wet substance that existed inside the store, thereby resulting in bodily injuries.  Courtney argued that plaintiff failed to prove the prima facie elements needed to establish a negligence claim.  In addition, Courtney convinced the panel that plaintiff could not show that H & M had either actual or constructive notice of the allegedly dangerous condition.  The panel found in favor of H & M and against the plaintiff. 

Obtained summary judgment in a major jury matter in which plaintiff alleged that she sustained significant bodily injuries after she slipped and fell inside the supermarket on water that dripped from the building's ceiling onto the floor.  The court granted our Motion, dismissing any and all claims against our client with prejudice on the basis that there was no evidence to support that our client exhibited negligent conduct.  We relied on a lease agreement that our client had with a codefendant to argue that the codefendant, rather than our client, was responsible for maintaining the area where plaintiff claimed to have slipped and fallen inside the store.

Obtained a defense verdict a Philadelphia Arbitration involving a slip and fall incident in which plaintiff alleged that she slipped and sustained bodily injuries due to an icy condition that defendants permitted to exist in a parking lot.  The arbitration panel found in favor of our client, a snow removal company, on the basis that it had no duty or involvement with regard to the allegedly dangerous condition.

Obtained summary judgment in a major jury matter in which plaintiff alleged that she sustained significant bodily injuries after she fell off her scooter due to a broken portion of the sidewalk adjacent to a parking lot.  The Court granted our Motion on the basis that plaintiff failed to show any connection between our client, a property management company, and the property where plaintiff claimed to have sustained her injuries, thereby dismissing any and all claims against our client with prejudice.

Obtained dismissal of our client, a nonprofit public health institute, prior to a major jury trial in Philadelphia, regarding a premises liability matter.  Plaintiffs claimed that minor-plaintiff suffered catrostophic injuries due to an allegedly dangerous condition that defendants negligently permitted to exist in a Philadelphia schoolyard.  Our client was dismissed because plaintiff failed to establish any evidence showing that our client either had notice of, or created, the allegedly dangerous condition.

Obtained a defense verdict in a subrogation matter in which plaintiff, an insurance company, alleged that our client caused his automobile to collide with its insured's vehicle.  We joined plaintiff's insured as an additional defendant on the basis that his own negligence caused the accident and sought a monetary award for the damages to our client's vehicle. The judge issued a verdict in our favor and against plaintiff.  In addition, the judge ruled that the additional defendant's failure to obey the Pennsylvania Rules of the Road that pertain to passing a vehicle and use of a turn signal caused the accident and awarded our client the amount of damages to his vehicle.

Obtained a defense verdict at a Philadelphia Arbitration trip and fall case.  The plaintiff claimed that she tripped and fell on a mat in front of the counter at our client's hoagie shop, resulting in injuries to her neck, shoulder and back. The Arbitration panel found in our favor because the plaintiff failed to sustain her burden of proving that the mat was defective and that our client was on notice of any dangerous condition prior to her alleged fall.  

Assisted a senior shareholder in obtaining a defense verdict in a binding Arbitration against two plaintiffs who were suing for property damage, loss of rental use and costs and fees attenuated to the underlying matter.  One of the properties was completely destroyed and the other property was significantly damaged due to improper excavation.  We represented the homeowners, who were having their property raised, excavated and built up with the intention of renting/selling the property.  Concepts of contractual indemnification, common law indemnification and Pennsylvania's Perry-Ruzzi Rule were debated and argued.  The judge rendered a defense verdict and also directed attorney's fees as part of the award.

Obtained a defense verdict at a Philadelphia Arbitration involving a motor vehicle case.  An insurance company alleged that our client caused his horse and buggy to collide with its insured's vehicle in Society Hill, Philadelphia as it merged into the driving lane from the right-hand lane designated for bicycles.  The Arbitration panel found in our favor because under the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Code, the insured failed to drive her vehicle at a safe speed in light of her surround­ings.  In addition, the Code provides that when a vehicle is travel­ing at a speed less than the normal speed of traffic at that time, the driver is permitted to drive in the furthermost right-hand lane, or as close as practical to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway, as our client had done in this case.

Obtained a defense verdict a Philadelphia Arbitration involving a slip and fall incident in which plaintiff alleged that she slipped and sustained bodily injuries due to a icy condition that defendants permitted to exist in a parking lot.  The arbitration panel found in favor of our client, a snow removal company, on the basis that it had no duty or involvement with regard to the allegedly dangerous condition.

Classes/Seminars Taught

Guided Mindfulness Meditation Practices To Promote Optimal Brain And Heart Health, CycleNation – American Heart Association Cycling Fundraiser, Philadelphia, PA. November 2, 2019

Mindfulness Practices to Foster Greater Self-Care and to Avoid Burnout, Executive Risk Forum – Graham Company, October 10, 2019

Mindfulness Practices to Cultivate Deeper Awareness and Better Manage Stress and Anxiety in the Midst of our Chaotic World, Association for Legal Administrators (ALA – Philadelphia Chapter, September 11, 2019

Mindfulness, an Effective Trial Tool: How to Escape Automatic Reactivity and Obtain Peak Performance at Trial, Philadelphia Bar Association, August 28, 2019

Mindfulness Meditation  - How It Can Help Cultivate Greater Creativity, Develop Better Communication Skills And Reduce Stress And Anxiety, Urban Outfitters - URBN's Monthly Wellness Program, Urban Outfitters Headquarters, Philadelphia, PA, July 24, 2019

Mindfulness Practices for Relaxation and Managing Hypertension, Independence Blue Cross Men’s Health Forum, Phila., PA, June 26, 2019

Teaching Intern of the MBSR Program with Aleeze Moss, PhD at the Mindfulness Institute at Jefferson University, Phila., PA., April, 2019 - June,  2019

Teacher of Mindfulness Club at William M. Meredith Elementary School, Phila., PA, March - May, 2019

Guided Meditation and Benefits of Practicing Mindfulness for Lawyers, Women in the Profession Committee, the Philadelphia Bar Association, March 26, 2019

Mindfulness for Greater Well-Being, Stress Reduction and Peak Performance, CLE Presentation, Independence Chapter of the Association for Legal Administrators (ALA), March 20, 2019

Mindfulness for Burnout & Vicarious Trauma, American Bar Association’s National Lawyer Referral Workshop, Phila, Pa. November, 2018

Introduction to Mindfulness for Stress and Anxiety Management, presented to the Law Students at Drexel Law, Phila,  PA, October 25, 2018

Relief from Everyday Stress - An Introduction to Meditation, Marshall Dennehey Annual Paralegal Training - Philadelphia Region, May 9, 2018

Mindfulness for Well-Being and Peak Performance, Marshall Dennehey Professional Development Series for Administrative Directors and Regional Managers, January 2, 2018

Mindfulness, LRAP Presentation, November 2017

Mindful Marketing, Marshall Dennehey Casualty Associate CLE Series, July 19, 2016

Pennsylvania Fair Share Act, Client Presentation, April 1, 2013

Published Works

"Awareness Over Anxiety," Philadelphia Bar Reporter, May 2020

"This Case is Killing Me," co-author, For The Defense, April 2020

"Mindfulness and the Ways it Can Help Ease Our Suffering in the Midst of a Pandemic," Philadelphia Bar Reporter, April 2020

"Becoming the BEST PRO: The Art of Mindful Marketing," For The Defense, July 2017

Admissions
New Jersey
2006
Pennsylvania
2006
U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania
2006
U.S. District Court District of New Jersey
2006
Education
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey School of Law-Camden, NJ (J.D., 2005)
University of Pennsylvania (B.A., 1999)
Honors & awards
Pennsylvania Super Lawyer Rising Star
2013-2015
Associations & memberships
American Bar Association
Pennsylvania Bar Association
Philadelphia Bar Association
Philadelphia Bar Association, Co-Creator/Co-Chair, Wellness Committee, 2018
Jefferson University - Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine, Graduate of the Mindfulness Teaching Practicum at the Mindfulness Institute, 2018
Jefferson University - Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine, Graduate of the Mindfulness Institute Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program at the Mindfulness Institute, 2016
Jefferson University - Mindfulness-Based Inquiry Training for Mindfulness Teachers at the Mindfulness Institute
Year joined
2008