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Aviation Accidents and the Law

This past April the pilot of a small plane crash-landed in O’okala as he attempted an emergency landing on a newly planted corn field.  In January of 2012, a small plane crashed at the Honolulu Airport, resulting in two runways being closed. While plane crashes are not especially commonplace, they do happen. Small and large airplanes and helicopters are used in Hawaii to travel from one island to another, and while these planes are generally considered safe, there can be risks to the passengers if the planes are improperly equipped or carelessly maintained. Pilot irresponsibility can also result in a plane crash.

Aviation laws are extremely complex, meaning it can be difficult for the victims of an airplane crash to receive just compensation for the negligence of the pilot or the manufacturer of the airplane or an airplane part. Because of the myriad of laws, treaties and regulations associated with airplane crashes in Hawaii , only the most persistent, dedicated and experienced attorneys are able to effectively litigate the case.

Although travel on an airplane is considered a safe method of travel, when airplanes do crash, fatalities are likely. Smaller, less serious accidents involving small private planes are more frequent than those in larger jets, and when a small plane crashes, there can be a variety  of persons or entities that are liable. The owner/operator of the plane could be liable; the manufacturer or maintenance suppliers could be liable; and even the federal government might have some level of liability in a plane accident. Pilot error generally plays at least some part in aircraft collisions, although aircraft components could be faulty and lead to more serious injuries.

The attorneys  at Shim & Chang have more than 35  years of experience representing residents of Hawaii as well as visitors to the islands. We investigate, analyze and work tirelessly to prepare either a personal injury or wrongful death case arising from an aviation crash, whether a private aircraft company or a commercial airline.

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Testimonials
  • "Shim & Chang were committed to helping my son no matter how long it took. They got the settlement we needed to take care of him for the rest of his life."

Verdicts & Results

The Estate of Mark Tokuyama v. City and County of Honolulu Jury awarded $953,114.57, which at the time was the highest award ever for a drowning case.

  • Death of a mother due to a hospital error

    $7 Million medical malpractice settlement.

  • Brain injury suffered by a teenager in a motor vehicle crash

    $6.5 Million settlement.

Awards
Reviews and Ratings
  • google
    5.0/5.0

    The attorneys of the law firm Shim and Chang are excellent, helpful, trustworthy, compassionate and conduct their business with integrity. Shim and Chang are not a law firm looking only to make money. Rather, Shim and Chang showed me they truly cared...

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    Kimberly Kau

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    When the condo owner living above us caused water damage to our condo, we were displaced for nearly two months. When his insurance carrier refused to compensate us for the inconvenience and the temporary housing cost, we hired the law firm of Shim an...

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    Dean N

  • google
    5.0/5.0

    I was injured while on vacation in Hawaii and actually was referred to Shim and Chang by an attorney that had litigated against them in the past. I was told that if she were in my position that is who she would contact. Immediately that was a plus an...

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    Suzanne Shaw

  • yelp
    5.0/5.0

    This is the kindest, most well-prepared and capable group of lawyers you can find. I contacted them for a personal injury due to negligence. They took care of me in every way. Every member of the team, from the office administrative to legal aid and ...

    Read more

    Kimberly L.

  • yelp
    5.0/5.0

    This is the kindest, most well-prepared and capable group of lawyers you can find. I contacted them for a personal injury due to negligence. They took care of me in every way. Every member of the team, from the office administrative to legal aid and ...

    Read more

    Kimberly L.

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Roy K. S. Chang Attorney Photo
Roy K. S. Chang
Partner

With more than 30 years of practical and trial experience handling all types of personal injury cases, Roy K. S. Chang has molded Shim & Chang into a highly creative and innovative law firm that honors the Hawaiian spirit of aloha. He has achieved an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell, the national directory of attorneys, indicating…

Harvey M. Demetrakopoulos Attorney Photo
Harvey M. Demetrakopoulos
Partner

With his unique name and background, Harvey M. Demetrakopoulos' character and experience have greatly added to the creative and innovative approach of Shim & Chang. He has been with the firm since 1996, exclusively handling personal injury cases. Raised in Honolulu, Harvey graduated from Kaimuki High School and attended the University of Hawaii at Manoa…

 Attorney Photo

Alvin Tong Shim, Founder of Shim & Chang In Memoriam of Alvin Tong Shim, November 10, 1923 - June 24, 2006 The Spirit of Aloha Born in Wailuku, Maui on November 10, 1923, Alvin Tong Shim was the second child and first son of Henry and Helen Shim. As a young boy, he earned money…

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