Hermes, Netburn, O'Connor & Spearing,P.C.
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Holly M. Polglase Shareholder

Email Direct: 617.210.7780
vCard Fax: 617.728.0052

Holly Polglase is a shareholder at Hermes, Netburn, O’Connor & Spearing, P.C.  Holly acts as lead counsel in the defense and trial of complex product liability, pharmaceutical, medical device, toxic tort, asbestos, general liability and commercial matters.  With over twenty years of experience, Holly represents product manufacturers, sellers and other businesses for catastrophic losses.

Holly works as national and regional counsel for major national and multi-national corporations.  In her wide ranging practice, she has represented designers, manufacturers, distributors and retailers, as well as the companies that service products.  She handles cases involving cars and trucks, tires, car seats, bicycles, farm and heavy equipment, industrial, manufacturing and food processing equipment, material handling equipment, hand and power tools, lawn and garden products, safety equipment, ladders, step stools, HVAC systems, toys, appliances and other consumer products as well as drugs and medical devices.  Holly’s experiences give her a broad background in fire cause and origin, accident reconstruction, biomechanics, epidemiology, industrial hygiene, chemicals, electrical systems, mechanical systems, manufacturing processes, materials science and medicine as well as the experts who work in these fields.  Her diverse practice also includes copyright litigation and other business and general liability disputes.

Holly is a frequent speaker on issues related to her civil trial practice in the state and federal courts and writes for numerous publications on these topics.  Holly is active in the bar and is a past Chair of the American Bar Association's Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section and a past President of the Massachusetts Defense Lawyers' Association and of the Federal Bar Association, Massachusetts Chapter.  She is admitted to practice in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Maine and New Hampshire and handles cases throughout the United States.


DiMascio v. Razor USA, LLC

Obtained voluntary dismissal of case seeking damages for alleged design defect in riding toy.

Lydford v. Nissan North America, Inc.

Defense verdict in unwanted acceleration case tried in New Hampshire Superior Court where plaintiff was seeking significant damages for traumatic brain injury.

Farahani v. Evenflo Company

Obtained summary judgment for child restraint manufacturer in product liability case.

Fanara v. General Motors Corporation

Directed verdict for automobile manufacturer in Barnstable, Massachusetts for claim of defective airbag.

Hollander v. Toshiba America Information Systems, Inc.

Obtained Dismissal during trial in $2,000,000 breach of warranty claim.

Doe v. American Medical Systems, Inc.

Second Circuit affirmed dismissal of claims against medical device manufacturer.

Hebert v. General Motors Corporation

Attained favorable settlement for automobile manufacturer during trial for claims that automotive friction products were the cause of plaintiff's mesothelioma.

Keyes v. Case Corporation

Summary Judgment obtained for manufacturer of loader/backhoe on the ground that expert testimony was insufficient to prove causation.

Lucius v. Makita U.S.A., Inc.

Defense verdict for power tool manufacturer in case where plaintiff faulted circular saw because it did not contain an electric brake.

Kapustin v. Dixie-Narco, Inc.

Defense verdict for manufacturer of vending machine which plaintiff claimed was unstable and toppled over on his leg.

Madigan v. General Motors Corporation

Massachusetts Appeals Court affirmed summary judgment for automotive manufacturer in crashworthiness case.

Medeiros v. Chrysler Corporation

Procured summary judgment for automobile manufacturer in asbestos case.

Scholz Design, Inc. v. Sard Custom Homes, LLC et al.

Second Circuit reversed dismissal of copyright claim.


American Bar Association

  • Chair, Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section, 2017-2018
  • Member, Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section Council, 2009-Present
    • Chair, CLE Board, 2006-2008
    • Member, Task Force on Leadership Diversity Initiative, 2010-2011
    • Chair, Standing Committee on Strategic Alliances, 2009-2010
    • Chair, Products, General Liability and Consumer Law Committee, 2000-2001
    • Vice Chair, Products, General Liability and Consumer Law Committee, 1990's-present
    • Past-Member, Finance Special Standing Committee
    • Past-Member, Women and Minority Involvement Committee
    • TIPS Fellow
  • Member, Litigation Section
  • Bulgarian Consumer Protection Project, ABA Central and East European Law Initiative 1992
  • ABA Standing Committee on Continuing Legal Education, 2007-2009
  • Member, ABA House of Delegates 2012-2015

Defense Research Institute

  • Co-Chair, Product Liability Committee, Hand and Power Tool Sub-Litigation Group 1998-2007

Federal Bar Association

  • President, Massachusetts Chapter, 2004-2005
  • Executive Committee Member (Past)

Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel

  • Member

International Association of Defense Counsel

  • Member                                                                              

Massachusetts Bar Association

  • Chair, Civil Litigation Section, 2014-2015
  • Council, Litigation Section, 2010-2014
  • Massachusetts Joint Bar Committee on Judicial Nominations 2007-2009
  • Life Fellow, Massachusetts Bar Foundation

Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association

  • President, 2010-2011
  • Past-Member, Board of Directors

Product Liability Advisory Council

  •  Sustaining Member

Advisory Panel of Citizens Concerning Reappointment of Magistrate Judges 2006


  • Listed in Best Lawyers®
    • Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants
    • Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants
    • Product Liability Litigation - Defendants
    • Lawyer of The Year 2018
  • Massachusetts Defense Lawyers Association-Defense Lawyer of the Year 2014
  • AV® Preeminent™ Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Super Lawyers 2006-2019
  • Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly-Top Woman in Law Honoree
Avvo RatingDRI Member Best Lawyers Award Badge
Holly M. Polglase
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