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Melissa Odama Hart

Car accident Attorney at Seattle, WA

5.0   28 reviews

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About Melissa

Learn Melissa’s areas of practice.

2
Practice areas
  1. Car accident
    95%
    I am a car accident attorney and I help people who are hurt in car accidents get money for their injuries.

    3 years

  2. Personal injury
    5%

    3 years

As an American whose father was born in a Colorado internment camp during World War II, I have always been aware of the human consequences that result from legal decisions. My firm is committed to seeking justice for every client through caring counsel and responsive service. 

I am dedicated to providing the best possible representation for my clients.  I am an aggressive, diligent trial lawyer who is not afraid of the courtroom.  I never back down from a challenge.  My practice focuses primarily on car accident cases where I find great satisfaction advocating for persons who have been injured through no fault of their own by the negligence of another.  I give victims and their families full support as my firm presses to maximize compensation at trial or through a favorable settlement.

I bring to the table a wealth of experience. I spent the first eight years of my career as a public defender fighting for and protecting the constitutional rights of those charged with adult and juvenile misdemeanor and felony offenses.  I have also garnered great trial experience in both civil defense and civil plaintiff's work.  I have worked as in-house counsel for a large insurance company defending company insureds from tort claims.  My firm is committed to making sure that justice is served as promptly and completely as is possible under Washington law.

A few years ago, my father died due to someone else's negligence.  This was an extremely traumatic event for my family.  I personally know what it's like to have a loved one killed in a car accident due to someone else's negligence. Having gone through this experience, I understand the human component to this.  I know how important it is to have someone on your side fighting to make sure justice is obtained.

 

 

Photos and videos

Licensed for 19 years
State WA
Status Active
Acquired 2003
Updated 02/01/2023

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

Contact Melissa

Seattle Car Accident Law Firm
155 NE 100th Street, Suite 210
Seattle, WA, 98125

Reviews

5.0 / 5.0
  28 customer reviews
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Posted by Angelique | April 5, 2022
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Excellent Representation
Just wrapped up a personal injury case with this attorney. In my experience, Melissa is a dedicated advocate to her clients. She is thorough, organized, knowledgable, and honest. She will take the time to explain legal concepts to clients and is forthright even when it isn't good news, or she thinks another approach is warranted. Your case is in very good hands if you choose to retain her.
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Posted by Beverly | February 18, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Outstanding Attorney
Melissa Odama Hart is an exceptional attorney who will go to battle and negotiate a fair settlement. I am extremely please in her handling of my personal injury case.
Posted by Dan | January 4, 2020
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Top notch attorney
Melissa is by far the most skilled, responsive, and professional attorney that I have ever been represented by (total of five in my life). Melissa was able to quickly examine all the information related to the case, develop an approach that was well thought out and strategic, and that she felt would result in the best possible settlement. From what I could tell, she was always one step ahead of the defense, which gave me peace of mind and a limited amount of work on my end. Ultimately, her attention to detail and preparation, not only helped me during initial negotiations, but when it came to the final settlement, she was able to increase the overall payment appreciably. Melissa was unwearied in her representation of me during my case, and I know that would be the same for anyone else - I fully recommend you retain Melissa to represent you in your case.
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Response from Melissa Odama Hart January 6, 2020
Thank you, Dan! It was my pleasure helping you. Wishing you and your family the very best!
Posted by Selina | June 18, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Professional, Knowledgeable, Detail-Oriented, and a Delight To Work With
Melissa and her team are professional, detailed, respectful, and super responsive (which is hard to come by). Melissa represented me in a complicated and difficult (dealing with AllState) case where I got into 3 car accidents one after another before treatment for the previous one was done. Melissa did a lot of due diligence - researched and requested reports from all my doctors to untangle all the pieces and organized everything. Melissa was very organized and kept me informed on where things were. She's good at tracking things down and making sure deliverables were on time. She also found a way to push the envelope to request maximum amount for my case. I have worked with several lawyers before, but none came close to Melissa's knowledge, professionalism, compassion, attention to detail, and customer service. She even impressed the arbitrator so much during arbitration that he made a couple of comments about how professional and knowledgeable she was, and that I got a great lawyer (couldn't agree more). I am happy with the award she helped me get and happy about avoiding going to a trial. I can't say enough good things about her. I would highly recommend Melissa to anyone who needs help with personal injury cases. She is the best!
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Response from Melissa Odama Hart June 19, 2019
Thank you, Selina. I am so happy I was able to help you with your case. You were a delight to work with and to get to know. Please keep in touch! :)
Posted by Richard | February 1, 2019
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Successful defense
A family member was charged with a misdemeanor and then another later on. Ms. Hart was able to successfully defend them, and my family member wound up with no criminal record. She was easy to work with and very competent in my opinion.
Posted by Bas | November 27, 2018
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Review
This was my fist time ( hopefully my last ) Melissa was with me every step of the way, she help me get the trust and confidence I needed and it all turned out good at the end and am very grateful for that.........THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP
Posted by Billy | November 8, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
outstanding attorney!
I found Melissa to be a true legal expert in the area of auto accidents. I have no doubt she got me the best possible outcome and reward for my recent two collisions, which was a tricky case to navigate with overlapping accidents. I would definitely use her again. I highly recommend MELISSA!!!
Posted by Steven | September 14, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Exemplary Experience
This review is extremely tardy, but VERY well deserved. In the spring of 2015, Melissa represented me in a delicate matter, and she was superb. Melissa not only knows her field, but she also TRULY CARES. I felt heard, respected, and important to Melissa, and I would recommend her in a heartbeat. In fact, I have an issue currently (not one in her area of expertise), but she was the ONLY attorney I contacted for advice/referrals to someone that could assist me. Melissa is STELLAR.
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Posted by Jordan | September 6, 2018
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Very knowledgeable and super helpful
Melissa was recommended to me for assistance by my chiropractor and she was wonderful. I had a very successful consultation phone call and she helped me to organize and resolve my challenges.
Posted by Kimberly | July 24, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
I would highly recommend Melissa to anyone needing a lawyer.
My son had been in/out of jail for the last few years when he was arrested on felony drug charges and placed in King County jail. He was about to lose his parental rights and had given up hope. He got a break when Melissa was assigned his case as a public defender My son will be released tomorrow and he is going into a sober living house. None of this would have been possible without her. My son can be difficult but she never gave up on him and fought hard to keep him from getting a felony conviction. A felony would have made it hard to get a job or rent an apartment when the time comes. It is because of Melissa that my son was given a fresh start. My son had given her permission to discuss his case with me and she always kept me up to date. Which gave me piece of mind. I pray that neither my son or I will need an attorney again, but if we do Melissa Hart is who I would hire. She ALWAYS keeps her clients best interest in mind and for that I will be forever grateful.
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Response from Melissa Odama Hart July 25, 2018
Thank you for the kind review, Kimberly. It is my pleasure to help your son. Please keep in touch and wish the best for you and your family.
Posted by anonymous | June 11, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Great Lawyer
Melissa did a great job on my case, working with me every step of the way and keeping me informed. She was great and I would hire her again if I needed to (hopefully I won't need to)
Posted by Erica | May 23, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
A Lawyer With A Heart ❤️
Melissa came in highly recommended to me by a friend. I have never done this process before and my stress level was to the max, because they waited the very last minute to proceed with my lawsuit. Melissa worked on the double and she made sure that everything will be fine Melissa was very patient with me the entire process, her words were always kind and assuring. She made everything a simple and painless as possible for me. She always connected with me with the si Melissa came in highly recommended to me by a friend. I have never done this process before and my stress level was to the max, because they waited the very last minute to proceed with my lawsuit. Melissa worked on the double and she made sure that everything will be fine Melissa was very patient with me the entire process, her words were always kind and assuring. She made everything a simple and painless as possible for me. She always connected with me Even with the simplest updates. We went into a mediation on 521 2018 not expecting too much, but Melissa ended up with so much settlement amount because Melissa made sure that I am taking care of! I would recommend her to all she’s a lawyer with a heart! Thank you very much attorney Odama for everything!
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Response from Melissa Odama Hart May 24, 2018
Erica, I am so happy that we could resolve your case favorably. It was a pleasure working with you and I hope we stay in touch. :)
Posted by Amanda | May 11, 2018
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Exceptional Traffic Collision Lawyer
I would recommend Melissa Odama Hart to anyone who has been in a collision, whether you are at fault or not at fault. She has exceptional legal knowledge and judgment in collision law and is able to communicate these laws to you very clearly and give you advise of the action you should take or not take with your insurance company and other issues such as communicating with the other driver, and seeking medical help. She gave me all of this advice at no charge and has changed the course of my claim to protect myself and my assets which is invaluable.
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Response from Melissa Odama Hart May 24, 2018
Thank you, Amanda! I am glad I was able to help. If you need anything in the future, please give me a call and I would be happy to help.
Posted by Omar | March 30, 2018
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Mr. Muir
Melissa Odama help me through a difficult and trying sixteen months of being the victim in a violent hit and run accident on the interstate 5 of Washington State, I could not have seen my claim through without Melissa's keen and professional approach to acquiring financial security via my car insurance company in this type of accident. Any person that experienced what I did on 9/8/2016, felt alone, confused and hurt. Odama Law,
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Response from Melissa Odama Hart May 24, 2018
Thank you, Omar. I really enjoyed working with you. I am so happy we were able to resolve your claim successfully!
Posted by Nazmi | November 16, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
I’m so thankful for Melissa!!
I was in the car accident when I was in my late pregnancy. The accident, recovery, and settlement process were long and painful roads for me. I’m very glad to have Melissa with me every step of the way. She is compassionate, intelligent, hardworking, and knowledgeable in this field. She is truly my advocate. I would highly recommend Melissa!
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Response from Melissa Odama Hart November 17, 2017
Hi Nazmi! Thank you for your confidence in hiring my firm to help you with your car accident case. I really enjoyed working with you and am happy we were able to resolve your case favorably! Best of luck to you!
Posted by anonymous | August 30, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Glad I choose this Lawyer!
Any accident is always scary. However, when you have someone on your side who understands how impacting an accident can be, you see the silverzlining. Melissa was able to express how I felt, How the plaintiff changed my lifestyle. We were on the same page instantly. Melissa helped me understand the jargon and she gave me great counsel throughout the process. She advocated for me and got me what I deserved!
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Posted by Meredith | July 27, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Very Helpful
Melissa helped me with my car accident settlement and got more for my medical treatment expenses then I expected I would get. She was very patient with me and helped me understand the legal jargon without making me feel stupid. I really appreciated everything she did for me when it felt like no one else was on my side.
Posted by Carol and Dean | July 13, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Dean - Carol
Excellent. She informed us of everything, her files were easy to understand and she did an exceptional job in giving us all the information and explained everything that was going on day by day. She had all the bills and payments taken care of and laid out all expenses from A to Z, paid all the bills and finalized our case showing us everything to the end amount of our settlement. In fact she has settled 2 cases in our favor and we were blessed how she took care of both cases and in a timely manner. we had no worries about anything and would rate her as an excellent lawyer and friend.. Thank you Melissa ... now I have some news and need to contact you again
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Posted by Willy | June 16, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Melissa Odama Hart Review
Delightful and very accommodating person to deal with. She was prompt in responding to our questions and always kept us informed.
Response from Melissa Odama Hart June 23, 2017
Hi Willy! Thank you for your kind words. I really enjoyed working with you and your family and wish you the best of luck in the future. :)
Posted by Carmel | April 3, 2017
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Highly Recommend Melissa Odama Hart - Great attention to detail!
Thank you so much to Melissa Odama Hart! I've been working with her for the last year and I couldn't be happier. She is helping with all of the little details I didn't even know I needed. She is always friendly and ready to answer all of my questions. Your attention to my case has allowed me to focus on what's important to me, healing and recovery. Thank you!
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Cost

Rates
  • Free Consultation 30 minutes
  • Contingency 33%-40%
  • Retainer Always
Payment methods
Cash, Check, Credit Card

Resume

AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Owner
  • Seattle Car Accident Law Firm
  • 2013 - Present
  • Trial Lawyer
  • The Blair Firm
  • 2011 - 2013
  • In House Counsel
  • Allstate Insurance / Encompass Insurance Staff Counsel
  • 2006 - 2007
  • Public Defender
  • Associated Counsel For The Accused
  • 2003 - 2011
View all work experience

Education

  • Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College
  • M.F. Warrior
  • 2011
  • Seattle University School of Law
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 2003
  • Seattle Pacific University
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 2000
  • University of Hawaii at Manoa
  • N/A
View all education

Legal Cases

  • State v. Defendant
  • DUI amended to Negligent Driving 1st Degree
  • State v. Defendant
  • Dismissed
  • Plaintiff v. Defendant
  • Settlement
View all legal cases

Associations

  • Washington State Association for Justice
  • Eagle Member
  • 2011 - Present
  • Trial Lawyers College
  • Member
  • 2008 - Present
  • Asian Bar Association of Washington
  • Member
  • 2007 - Present
  • Washington Defenders Association
  • Member
  • 2003 - Present
  • King County Bar Association
  • Member
  • 2003 - Present
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Top 100 Litigation Lawyers
  • American Society of Legal Advocates
  • 2018
  • 2017 Best of Bellevue Awards for Local Business.
  • Bellevue Award Program
  • 2017
  • Pro Bono Publico Service Commendation
  • Washington State Bar Association
  • 2017
  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • National Trial Lawyers
  • 2016
  • Listed
  • Who's Who Legal
  • 2016
  • Warrior/Graduate
  • Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College
  • 2011
  • Access to Justice Volunteer Recognition Award
  • Seattle University School of Law
  • 2003
  • Phi Beta Kappa
  • Seattle Pacific University
  • 2000
  • Dean's List
  • Seattle Pacific University
  • 2000
  • Dean's List
  • Seattle Pacific University
  • 1999
View all awards

Publications

  • Literary Publication
  • Second Essence
  • 2000

Speaking Engagements

  • Totally Tuesday CLE
  • Discovering The Story
  • 2009
  • Your Family Law Practice in the 21st Century
  • Domestic Violence Protection Orders
  • 2008

Attorney endorsements

Received (26)
Given (25)
Endorse Melissa
Criminal defense Attorney | Jun 16
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer. Melissa is a great attorney. She has office space in my office so I get to see how much she does for her clients. She is passionate about helping them both her criminal clients as well as her personal injury practice. She is hardworking, competent and not afraid to fight for them!"
Personal injury Attorney | Dec 02
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Melissa is a talented and respected lawyer who fights hard for her clients. She is an lawyer that you can trust to do a great job for your case."
Personal injury Attorney | Feb 05
Relationship: Worked for lawyer
"Melissa is dedicated, courteous, and bright. She has a tremendous amount of courtroom experience and always handles herself with professionalism in the courtroom. Melissa cares about getting getting great results for her clients and works hard to make that happen. I recommend Melissa for personal injury work."
Criminal defense Attorney | Sep 05
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer."
Personal injury Attorney | Aug 29
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. I have worked with Melissa on personal injuryh and criminal law matters. I view Ms. Odama as an attorney who is diligent and hard working, and someone who does not rest until she has achieved the best possible result for her clients."
DUI and DWI Attorney | Aug 07
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Melissa is an outstanding attorney. I met Melissa when she was working as a felony unit public defender. She fights hard for her clients and is truly passionate about her work. She is a great resource for other attorneys as well, as she has extensive knowledge of criminal defense issues and personal injury law. I would recommend Melissa to anyone in need of a criminal defense or personal injury lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jul 27
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Melissa is an extremely talented lawyer. She is bright, compassionate and an aggressive advocate. She is a supportive colleague. I would strongly endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jul 19
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I had the pleasure of working with Ms. Odama when were both public defenders, so I have observed first-hand how professional and dedicated she is. She is an especially talented trial lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jun 17
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. I've known Melissa since Law School, and have been impressed by her ever since. I've had a chance to see her in court several times, and I consider her to be highly professional and formidable as a defense counsel. I wouldn't hesitate to refer to her."
Personal injury Attorney | Jun 02
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Ms. Odama has an outstanding work ethic. She is very understanding and cares about her clients. Each clilent and each case are given 110% and Ms. Odama gets results. I would trust Ms. Odama with my own case or that of my family."
Criminal defense Attorney | May 07
Relationship: Co-worker
"I strongly endorse this lawyer. Whether it is a personal injury or a criminal defense, Melissa Odama is the attorney you want fighting for you. Melissa is an excellent attorney who is always well prepared, thoughtful, passionate about the law, and a tremendous advocate. I feel privileged to work with Melissa and would not hesitate to recommend her to my own family or friends for personal injury or criminal defense."
Criminal defense Attorney | Mar 11
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Ms. Odama is a very experienced trial attorney who works hard fighting for her clients. She is very passionate about the law and dedicated to improving her craft."
Unknown Attorney | Jan 09
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. Ms. Odama is a very knowledgeable attorney."
Personal injury Attorney | Jan 02
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Melissa is a bright and talented attorney. She cares deeply about her client and will not let them down. Her sense of honor and duty is why the jury finds in her favor. You will get first class legal representation hiring her as your lawyer. I worked with Melissa at Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College, and she is excellent."
Personal injury Attorney | Nov 16
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Litigation Attorney | Jul 06
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Melissa is a bright and talented attorney. She cares deeply about her client and will not let them down. Her sense of honor and duty is why the jury finds in her favor. You will get first class legal representation hiring her as your lawyer."
Litigation Attorney | Jul 05
Relationship: Opposing Counsel on matter
"I endorse this lawyer. Great attorney."
Personal injury Attorney | Jun 24
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I worked with Melissa in the same law firm. She is an excellent trial attorney. She done a lot of trials. She is very intelligent and creative. She is also dedicated to her clients. I endorse her."
Personal injury Attorney | Jun 01
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Ms. Odama is an extremely passionate and knowledgeable trial attorney. Her training is among the best in her field. If you want a lawyer to work hard for you and believe in what's due you, hire Ms. Melissa Odama."
Litigation Attorney | Mar 22
Relationship: Opposing Counsel on matter
"I endorse this lawyer and highly recommend her without reservation. We have been opposing counsel against each other on numerous cases over the past 8 years and we have tried numerous cases against each other. She is a highly skilled trial attorney and litigator and epitomizes the qualities of the best trial attorney; aggressive, zealous, knowledgeable, and compassionate. She is very quick on her feet and she is very well spoken, articulate and eloquent in her delivery. She has a strong command of the law and its nuances. Again, I endorse her without reservation."
View more endorsements
Criminal defense
Criminal defense
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Criminal defense
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