David Rammelt is a trial lawyer and partner in Benesch’s Litigation Practice Group, where he serves as Co-Chair of the Business Litigation Group, and Chair of the firm’s Products Liability Practice. His trial practice is focused primarily on complex business litigation, products liability litigation, and intellectual property and sports litigation. For over two decades, David has represented more than 100 public and private companies and has served as lead trial counsel in more than two dozen jury trials, class action lawsuits, TRO and injunction hearings, and/or binding arbitrations. He has tried or successfully resolved cases for clients in a variety of matters involving banking and finance, toxic tort, securities fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and shareholder disputes, antitrust violations, unfair competition claims, patent and trademark disputes, distributor disputes, real estate disputes, consumer class actions, product and warranty litigation, and contract disputes. David has appeared in more than 100 state and federal courts throughout the United States.
Recently, David has represented clients in a variety of industries in connection with class actions and jury trials throughout the United States, including:
- Lead trial counsel in a nationwide consumer warranty class action filed in federal court in Pennsylvania that was resolved successfully for the client in 2017.
- Lead trial counsel in a nationwide consumer class action involving allegedly defective kitchen appliances pending in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
- Lead trial counsel in a four-week jury trial in Camdenton, Missouri, involving a boat explosion tried to verdict in 2014.
- Lead trial counsel in an environmental toxic tort case tried to a jury in Cook County, Illinois. After a two-week trial, the case was settled after the jury rendered an advisory defense verdict in 2013.
- Part of the trial team that successfully defeated a $171 million patent infringement case tried to a federal jury in San Diego, California, in 2012.
- Lead trial counsel for a global investment bank in a breach of fiduciary duty and conspiracy case tried over seven weeks to a successful conclusion before a federal jury in Chicago. Successfully barred opposing counsel’s expert economist from testifying at trial before the trial court entered a directed verdict in 2010.
- Lead trial counsel successfully barred opposing counsel’s two expert witnesses (including another expert economist) at trial, resulting in an immediate settlement at favorable terms for the client in federal court in Houston, Texas, in 2010.
- Lead trial counsel for an equipment manufacturer in a case in which it was alleged that design of over 125,000 commercial treadmills was defective. The jury rendered a complete defense verdict after a two-week jury trial in Cook County, Illinois, in 2008. The verdict was not appealed.
In 2008, David and his team were appointed to serve as National Litigation Counsel for a global manufacturer of fitness equipment, boats and marine engines, and were responsible for overseeing hundreds of lawsuits throughout the United States. David has also served as national counsel for a global bicycle manufacturer. In 2016, David led a team selected by a major oil and energy company to serve panel litigation counsel, and in 2017 he and his team were selected as national counsel for a global helmet and sports & recreational product manufacturer. The alternative fee model that David and his client developed for handling national litigation was featured in an in-depth article in the Business Section of the Chicago Tribune.
In addition to trial work, David regularly counsels multinational companies on strategies to avoid litigation. Among other things, he and his team provide advice on product recalls, hazard/injury reporting, service campaign issues, warning and labeling requirements, consumer protection issues, lemon law claims, warranty claims, Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act claims, and general risk management issues. David has substantial experience counseling clients with respect to the requirements of the Consumer Product Safety Commission. He has led national product recalls on behalf of manufacturers of electrical cable, bicycle forks, and fitness equipment, among others. In 2016, David was retained by a manufacturer of printer power supply units to coordinate a global product recall under U.S., European and Latin American product safety regulations after receiving reports of fires. In 2017, David was retained by an equipment manufacturer to assist evaluating the company’s CPSC compliance program and to assist with a threatened civil penalty. David deposed and had the former Chairman of the CPSC barred from testifying at trial in one case, and he regularly works with the former General Counsel of the CPSC, a former CPSC Director of Enforcement, and the former Acting CPSC Director of the Recalls and Compliance.
David and his team regularly speak at seminars before the American Yacht & Boat Council regarding warnings, standards compliance and documentation, document retention, and litigation engineering. In February 2016 and 2017, David presented to Boating Industry Risk Management Council on litigation strategy and industry lessons learned from a month-long jury trial he tried involving a catastrophic boat explosion. David and his team work have worked closely with the United States Coast Guard to provide engineering and safety expertise in specific cases and/or during product development.
David has handled high-profile cases that have drawn considerable media attention. Cases in which he has appeared as lead trial counsel have been covered by the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the New York Times, among others. He has appeared on CNBC and has been quoted in dozens of newspapers and magazines, including USA Today and Crain’s Chicago Business.