Ryan Lapine

Partner

Ryan Lapine is an accomplished litigator with a demonstrated history of first-chair trial success in complex federal and state court matters. Clients call on Ryan to handle their most complex, high-stakes disputes, regardless of subject matter. He has significant experience in insurance recovery, intellectual property, trust and estate, and complex business disputes, with a thorough understanding of entertainment, cryptocurrency, and cannabis industry issues.

In his insurance recovery practice, Ryan represents corporate and high-net-worth policyholders, enforcing their rights when insurers resist valid claims for covered losses or fail to adhere to their duties regarding third-party claims. He also provides counseling to clients navigating pending and potential insurance claims. Ryan has helped clients resolve insurance recovery litigation through settlement negotiations and at trial. He won the second-largest insurance-recovery jury verdict in California in 2015.

Ryan has represented cannabis industry clients for 15 years and is keenly aware of the unique legal and regulatory matters affecting these businesses. He regularly represents growers, investors, property owners, product manufacturers, and dispensers in business disputes and regulatory issues. He also represents significant clients in the cryptocurrency space, including the founder and developer of a major cryptocurrency and the foundation that manages and supports a major cryptocurrency, in federal and state litigation.

Ryan regularly represents entertainment companies and well-known entertainers in a broad range of business and IP litigation arising from contract disputes, breaches of fiduciary duty, fraud, copyright and patent infringement claims, and violations of the right of publicity. He also handles a variety of business litigation for companies big and small, including breach of contract and licensing matters, defense of qui tam actions, intellectual property infringement, and business defamation. In addition, he represents high-net-worth individuals in trust, estate, and family disputes arising from palimony actions, removal of trustees, fraudulent property conveyances, complex marital dissolutions, and more.

Experience

Representative Matters

  • Served as lead counsel and lead trial counsel for a production company asserting breach of the duty to defend, breach of the duty to pursue settlement, and breach of the duty to settle claims against an errors and omission insurance provider. Ryan succeeded on all claims, winning a $2,280,000 jury verdict on two claims and a directed verdict in the client’s favor on the remaining claim. This was the second-largest insurance recovery jury verdict in California in 2015
  • Served as lead counsel for a legendary American musician (through his holding and management company) defending copyright claims to protect his ownership interest in two concert movies he created. Ryan defeated plaintiff’s claims in full on summary judgment, obtaining a complete defense judgment
  • Served as lead counsel for an investment company, winning a seven-figure judgment following a bench trial, including an award of punitive damages, attorneys’ costs, and fees. Earlier in the case, Ryan also obtained a temporary restraining order, a preliminary injunction, and an award of sanctions against defendants for discovery abuses
  • Served as trial counsel for a leading talent manager asserting breach of contract, conversion, and fraudulent conveyance claims against the management company for which she formerly worked. The jury returned a verdict with significant monetary damages in favor of Ryan’s client
  • Served as lead counsel and lead trial counsel for a production company asserting breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty claims against an escrow company. The three-week jury trial resulted in a more than $1,500,000 verdict for Ryan’s client
  • Defended the Swiss branch of an international financial institution against Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) violations and fraudulent conveyance claims in a one-week jury trial. The case resulted in a complete defense verdict
  • Served as lead counsel for an entertainment company in a fraud and breach of contract action against a vodka manufacturer and its principal. Ryan’s client won a $3,100,000 judgment
  • Served as lead counsel in an insurance interpleader action and successfully intervened on behalf of his client and other interested parties, vacating a purported settlement agreement and later engineering a global settlement
  • Served as lead counsel for a legendary American musician (through his holding and management company) asserting Lanham Act and copyright infringement claims against a popular cruise line and its content provider. The case settled after filing of a federal action
  • Obtained a global settlement after defeating defendant’s motion for summary judgment for the plaintiff in a post-marital palimony action
  • Succeeded in suspending and removing the co-trustees of the subject trust on motion of the beneficiary as litigation counsel for the beneficiary of a trust valued at greater than $350,000,000, a matter described as the largest probate litigation in Los Angeles County
  • Served as lead counsel for an heiress of advanced age in an action brought against two acquaintances under the Elder Abuse and Dependent Adult Civil Protection Act. Ryan won injunctive relief invalidating purported conveyances to one of the defendants, and settled after mediation with the other defendant
  • Served as lead trial counsel for an individual shot by a third-party assailant at the 2013 San Francisco Pride Festival. Ryan defeated the defendant’s motion for summary judgment and the matter subsequently settled
  • Served as lead trial counsel for an individual shot by a third-party assailant at the 2015 San Francisco Pride Festival. Ryan helped achieve a settlement for his client after defeating defendant’s anti-SLAPP Motion
  • Wrote a friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of Love Honor Cherish in opposition to a petition for rehearing en banc in the landmark litigation that ultimately invalidated Proposition 8, restoring marriage equality in California

Insights

Credentials
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Education

  • J.D. University of California, Hastings College of the Law 2004
    • Managing editor, Hastings Communications and Entertainment Law Journal
  • B.A. Public Policy and Economics University of Chicago 2001

Bar Admissions

  • California

Court Admissions

  • Central District of California
  • Eastern District of California
  • Northern District of California
  • Southern District of California
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Professional Memberships and Activities

  • Previous member, California Committee of Bar Examiners

Recognition
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  • Super Lawyers
    • Southern California, 2020 – 2022
    • Rising Star, 2012 – 2015