Jonathon E. Cross

Shareholder

Jon focuses his practice on a wide range of casualty and professional liability matters, with particular emphasis on amusements, sports and recreation liability claims. As a former athlete, Division-I college baseball coach, and camp owner, Jon is uniquely qualified in representing and defending sports and recreation facility owners, coaches and instructors, youth athletic organizations, professional athletes, all type of educational institutions and college fraternities when claims are made against them. He is also experienced in defending trampoline parks, water parks, zip line adventure courses, rock climbing wall centers, golf courses, theme parks and more.

With the emergence of sports related concussion claims, Jon advises and represents school districts, colleges, youth leagues, trainers, referees and recreational parks in claims that arise from failure to recognize a concussion and the failure to follow return-to-play protocol.  Further, Jon handles the catastrophic injury related sports and recreation claims sustained by concussions, the second impact syndrome, drownings, and other serious bodily injuries.

On the professional liability side, Jon provides legal counsel and representation to contractors, architects and engineers, accountants, attorneys, insurance brokers, real estate brokers and financial advisors in a wide range of matters including legal malpractice, accounting malpractice, wrongful use of civil process, abuse of process, negligence and breach of contract claims.

Outside of his law practice, Jon serves on the Executive Board of the Richie Ashburn Foundation, which raises funds to provide over 19 free baseball camps and clinics yearly to children throughout the Philadelphia and suburban area.  He works with the Foundation to raise funds to support blind and visually impaired children to play "beep" baseball. 

Jon coached four seasons of Division-I baseball at the University of Pennsylvania. Previously, he coached for nine years at Germantown Academy, where he also was a member of the Board of Trustees (eight years) and served as chair of the sports/athletic committee.  Jon additionally was a head baseball coach at the William Penn Charter School in Philadelphia, and he formerly operated his own winter and summer baseball camps.  

Significant Representative Matters

Success in defending trampoline parks in large loss lawsuits.

Success in defending indoor water parks. 

Success in obtaining an defense verdict for major league baseball team and a former professional player.

Success in defending indoor athletic recreation facility. 

Success in defending sport and social club.

Success in obtaining an order to dismiss a multi-million dollar gas station fire lawsuit.

Success in defending construction contractor for alleged OSHA violations. 

Success in defending a multi-million dollar lawsuit relating to defective fireworks.

Success in obtaining a dismissal of a lawsuit against a security guard company.

Success in handling multi-million dollar claims and obtaining favorable outcomes.

Success in favorably resolving cases through the mediation process.

Success in obtaining a dismissal of a legal malpractice case pursuant to plaintiff's failure to comply with the Pennsylvania Rules of Civil Procedure.

Success in defending a golf club at trial for premises liability.

Success in litigating numerous cases involving school districts and universities involving claims for negligence, discrimination and athletic field liability.

Success in obtaining a jury verdict in favor of a major check cashing company.

Success in obtaining defense verdict in a wrongful use of civil proceedings claim.

Classes/Seminars Taught

Concussion Litigation - It's Heading Your Way, Insurance Law Global Virtual Conference, March 26, 2021

From the NFL to Friday Night Lights...Tackling Concussion Litigation, Philadelphia Insurance Companies, October 4, 2017

The Present and Future of Concussion Litigation, Philadelphia Insurance Companies' Continuing Education Program, May 2017

Sports Tort Liability and Risk Management, University of Delaware, Sports & Facility Management Department, November 2016

From the NFL to Friday Night Lights...Emerging Youth Sports Concussion Claims and Risk Management, Insurance Casualty Actuaries of New England, April 7, 2016

Athletic Risk Management and Concussion Litigation, University of Delaware, Sports & Facility Management Department, October 2015

Youth Sports Risk Management, New Jersey Recreation & Park Association's 2015 Annual Conference, Atlantic City, NJ, March 2015

Tackling Concussion Litigation, New Jersey Recreation & Park Association's 2015 Annual Conference, Atlantic City, NJ, March 2015

Youth Sports Risk Management, University of Delaware, Sports & Facility Management Department, March 2015

Tackling Concussion Litigation, University of Delaware, Sports & Facility Management Department, March 2015

Emerging Claims -- Youth Sports Concussion Litigation, Casualty Actuarial Society's Centennial Conference, New York, NY, December 2014

Published Works

"Heads Up and Watch Out! Potential Liability for Traumatic Brain Injury Pursuant to the Safety in Youth Sports Act," Defense Digest, Vol. 23, No. 4, December 2017

"Boom! Lightning Liability at University Athletic Events," URMIA Journal, September 2015

“Fair Game? Legal Exposures Alter the Playing Field for Youth Sports,” Defense Digest, Vol. 21, No. 1, March 2015

"Court Recognizes Misconduct When Jurors Seek Out Their Own Expert Opinion," Defense Digest, Vol. 11, No. 2, June, 2005

"The Witness Immunity Doctrine Does Not Preclude Experts From Being Sued for Professional Malpractice," Professional Liability Underwriting Society, PLUS Journal, May 2000

"Obtaining Records With Fewer Headaches," (Co-Author), Defense Digest, Vol. 4, No. 6, 1998

"New Procedures Complicate Production of Documents By A Non-Party," Defense Digest, Vol. 3, No. 6, 1997

"Pennsylvania Superior Court Rules On Statute of Limitations For Defendants Who Leave The Commonwealth," Defense Digest, Vol. 3, No. 5, 1997

"Procedural Difficulties with New Discovery Rule",  MDWCG Legal Malpractice Handbook, October 1998

"Effect of Fiorantino on Legal Malpractice Claims for Breach of Contract", MDWCG Legal Malpractice Handbook, October 1998

"Legal Malpractice Defense that a Claim is Premature", MDWCG Legal Malpractice Handbook, 1999

"Continuous Representation Rule Still Not the Law in Pennsylvania", MDWCG Legal Malpractice Handbook, 1999

Admissions
Pennsylvania
1996
Education
Villanova University School of Law (J.D., 1996)
Lafayette College (B.A., 1993)
Honors & awards
Pennsylvania Super Lawyers Rising Star
2006-2008, 2010-2011
Associations & memberships
Germantown Academy, Fort Washington, PA, Board of Trustees (1999-2007)
Germantown Academy, Fort Washington, PA, Sports Committee Chair (1999-2007)
Pennsylvania Bar Association
Philadelphia Bar Association
Richie Ashburn-Harry Kalas Foundation, Executive Board Member (1998 - present)
Insurance Law Global - Sports and Recreation Committee, 2020- Present
Year joined
1997