My Toughest Case: Darriel McCorvey
A star in the courtroom and on the gridiron for LSU, Lafayette attorney Derriel McCorvey represents clients from around the country in personal injury, mass tort and other cases.
The 48-year-old McCorvey’s most memorable case came after the tragic 2011 death of kindergartener La’Derion Miller in Milton. Miller was being picked up by his school bus and the driver, who was running late and in a hurry, closed the door on Miller’s arm. Miller was dragged for a while before falling and being crushed by the wheels of the bus. The boy would die of his injuries.
Miller’s parents were not married, but filed separate lawsuits. At the time, the law was unclear on whether or not a biological father could file suit in such a case. La’Derion’s father, Marcus, was an active dad who paid child support. Marcus came to McCorvey for help in arguing for his rights as a father. The case went all the way to the Louisiana Supreme Court, who ruled in Miller’s favor and granted him financial compensation.
The case was memorable for McCorvey in part because he had a child close to La’Derion’s age. He was moved by Marcus Miller’s plight as a father and it was rewarding for McCorvey to help Miller find some vindication.
“[Marcus Miller] not only lost his son, but he had to prove to the world that he was the father,” McCorvey said.
McCorvey also participated in the landmark class action suit by former professional football players against the NFL for the league’s negligence in addressing long-term health issues related to concussions. McCorvey and a team of lawyers negotiated a landmark settlement that will remain uncapped for the next 60 years.
That issue was close to McCorvey’s heart because he had a distinguished football career for LSU as a strong safety from 1988-93, receiving Academic All-America SEC honors from 1991-93. He signed a free agent contract with the Indianapolis Colts upon graduation. When he did not make the final cut, he enrolled in law school at the Southern University Law Center the following week. He graduated from Southern in 1998.
Regardless of the type of case McCorvey is working, he believes the rewarding part of his career always comes back to the same point: helping others. He says the clients he has met and worked with over the years have become a part of his family.
“[The law] is a profession where you can truly help people in so many different ways,” McCorvey said. “My biggest goal is to get my client back to 100 percent.”
When he is not practicing law, McCorvey enjoys hunting and fishing and spending time with his wife Raquel and their blended family.