William Ryan established his own litigation firm in January 2001, after having practiced at Jenner & Block LLP for more than eight years. While at Jenner, he achieved partner status in December 1998. He served as law clerk to the Honorable J. Daniel Mahoney, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit during the 1991 - 1992 term.

Mr. Ryan has a successful track record of representing major companies in a variety of complex commercial litigation, including patent, unfair competition, antitrust, breach of contract, class action and technology-related matters.


Notable Trials

  • Sirazi v. General Mediterranean Holdings, 12 CV 653 (N.D. Ill.) - Obtained judgment of $12.9 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages on claims for conspiracy, tortious interference with contract, and unjust enrichment relating to the transfer of a 62-acre parcel of Chicago real estate in violation of a secured collateral agreement. The case involved a London-based billionaire and his companies conspiring with Chicago businessman (and convicted felon) Tony Rezko to defraud the plaintiffs out of funds owed to them by Rezko and the assets securing those debts. The jury returned the verdict in plaintiffs' favor in only two hours following a two-week trial. Verdict selected by National Law Journal as one of the top 100 verdicts of 2015.
  • Amakua Development LLC v. H. Ty Warner, et al. (No. 05 C 3082) - Secured a jury verdict of no liability for H. Ty Warner, Ty Inc., Ty Warner Hotels & Resorts LLC and JTL Capital Corporation in a lawsuit in which plaintiff Amakua sought more than $30 million in damages plus punitives, in relation to the sale of the Las Ventanas Resort in Los Cabos, Mexico from JTL Capital to Ty Warner Hotels & Resorts..
  • Estate of Robert Keck v. Karklins (Circuit Court of Cook County) - Obtained $1.7 million jury verdict on claims of undue influence in connection with inter vivos transfers to a household employee.
  • Illinois Tool Works v. Powers Fasteners (N.D. Illinois) - Markman hearing in a patent infringement action involving collated fastener strips for gas-powered fastener driving tool.
  • Greenbrier & Russell vs. TyTrade - JAMS Arbitration before the Honorable Mel Jiganti. Obtained successful no liability defense verdict on $3 million cost overrun claims arising from website construction project.
  • Lid Associates v. Dolan (No. 95 L 16680, Circuit Court of Cook County) - Defended a cable television pioneer in a $100 million breach of fiduciary duty case brought by limited partnership groups. Successfully directed verdict on punitive damages claim. Partial jury award in plaintiff's favor overturned on appeal.

Complex Commercial Litigation

  • Represented a major agricultural equipment manufacturer in a class action product liability litigation.
  • Represented a major cable carrier in a jury trial involving alleged breach of fiduciary duty.
  • Represented a biotechnology company in antitrust litigation concerning bio-engineered seeds.
  • Represented a major securities firm in multimillion-dollar breach of contract and professional malpractice action.
  • Represented the City of Chicago in several class actions and individual lawsuits arising out of the Great Chicago Flood.
  • Represented the Chicago Transit Authority in government contracts litigation arising out of a contract for the manufacture of transit buses.
  • Represented a major retailer in an antitrust challenge to nationwide pricing practices.

Patent Litigation

  • Represented a major manufacturer in a patent infringement action relating to automotive engine parts.
  • Represented a packaging company in patent infringement litigation relating to zip-lock bags.
  • Represented a biotechnology company in patent litigation concerning bio-engineered seeds.
  • Represented a major manufacturer in patent infringement action involving gas-powered fastening tools.
  • Represented a major computer game company in a patent infringement action involving computer software.
  • Represented an educational software company in a patent infringement and trade secrets action.

Arbitration, mediation, Alternative Disputer Resolution

  • Conducted an arbitration of a multimillion-dollar website development dispute on behalf of an e-commerce company.
  • Conducted a mediation for a securities firm in a breach of contract and professional malpractice action.

Selected Publications and Speaking Engagements

  • "Temporary Restraining Orders and Preliminary Injunctions," Chapter 9, Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education, Business & Commercial Litigation 2012 edition, Co-author.
  • "The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act: An Essential Tool for Employers," published in several Andrews Litigation Reporters, including Employment (February 9, 2010), Computer & Internet (February 17, 2010), Intellectual Property (March 9, 2010), Telecommunications Industry (March 2, 2010) and White-Collar Crime (March 25, 2010), Co-author.
  • Legal Insights "President Obama Signs Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009" (January 2009), Co-author.
  • "Winning the Battle of the Forms," Illinois Bar Journal (July 2008), Co-author.
  • National Institute for Trial Advocacy Midwest Regional Program, Instructor (March 2003)

Admissions, Affiliations and Honors

  • Trial Bar: Northern District of Illinois
  • Federal Bars: Seventh Circuit and Northern District of Illinois
  • State Bar: Illinois
  • DePaul University College of Law Center for Intellectual Property Law and Information Technology Advisory Board, (2002 to present)
  • Executives' Club of Chicago, Member (2009-2010)
  • 2011 BTI Client Service All-Star
  • Selected by peers and colleagues as "Super Lawyer" and "Leading Lawyer" in the area of intellectual property litigation
  • AV Preeminentâ„¢ 5.0 out of 5 peer review rating in Martindale-Hubbell Legal Directory

Military Service

  • United States Navy, Gunner's Mate Third Class (1980-1984)


  • Harvard Law School, Cambridge, Massachusetts
    • Juris Doctor, cum laude, 1991
    • Articles Editor, Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy
William J. Ryan
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