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Ryan D. Ellis


Ryan D. Ellis is a trial attorney who represents individuals and businesses in a variety of civil litigation matters. Named a “Lawyer on the Rise” by Texas Lawyer magazine in 2017, Ryan focuses his practice on business disputes—such as fraud claims, contractual disputes, trade secret theft, business torts, and employment disputes—as well as on product defect and catastrophic personal injury matters.

Individuals and companies of all sizes and across a wide range of industries have relied on Ryan to represent and advise them throughout all stages of litigation in both state and federal court, as well as in private arbitration.

A few highlights of Ryan’s career thus far include:

  • Represented a small Houston-based exploration and production company in arbitration against a large, publicly-traded energy producer for claims of business fraud, negligent misrepresentation, and breach of contract. Ryan coordinated electronic and expert discovery for that case involving a massive amount of data. The case settled shortly before the final arbitration hearing, resulting in a significant payment to the small company.
  • Obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of a small Texas medical education company for claims that a potential business partner stole the small company’s trade secrets and competed against it in violation of a NDA.
  • Represented San Antonio’s Harlandale Independent School District in litigation charging that HVAC equipment installed in school buildings had created a hazardous mold problem. That case settled favorably for the school district before trial.
  • Worked closely with victims and their family members in General Motors Ignition Switch Litigation, coordinating fact and expert discovery and ultimately recovering millions for his clients through the GM Victim Compensation Fund.
  • Member of the litigation team that successfully sued on behalf of former Houston Texans punter, Brett Hartmann, who suffered a career-ending knee injury after his foot was caught in a turf seam caused by the infamous “pallet system” on the NRG Stadium field. That case resolved with a settlement in favor of Mr. Hartmann and resulted in the changing of the turf to better protect professional football players from unwarranted injuries.
  • Represented a family-owned stud-welding business against allegations that it owed a former broker hundreds of thousands of dollars for services allegedly rendered. That case resolved with Ryan’s client paying nothing to the broker and, in fact, resulted in a payment to the small business.
  • Assisted with the representation of Chesapeake Energy and Apache Corporation in separate, high-profile disputes involving allegations of trade secret theft.

Prior to joining Howry Breen & Herman, Ryan worked closely with legendary trial lawyer Mark Lanier. Together they secured full, fair and substantial settlements on behalf of his clients.

Born and raised in Houston, Texas, Ryan attended the University of Texas at Austin where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and graduated with Highest Honors in 2010. He earned his law degree at the University of Texas School of Law in 2013. In law school, Ryan served as Executive Editor of the Texas Review of Law & Politics, was an intramural mock trial champion, and a member of the UT Interscholastic Mock Trial Team. He further augmented his legal education by serving as a judicial intern for Justice Eva Guzman at the Texas Supreme Court.

Ryan has contributed legal analysis to articles published by Reuters and Sports Litigation Alert. Additionally, his note, “Mandating Injustice: The Preponderance of the Evidence Mandate Creates a New Threat to Due Process on Campus” was published in the winter 2013 edition of The Review of Litigation.

Ryan volunteers on the Rodeo Austin Calf Scramble Committee which raises scholarships for Texas high school students, and he is a proud supporter of the Texas Longhorns.

To discuss your case with a personal injury attorney in Austin, contact our firm at (512) 430-4844 or via an online contact form.


  • The University of Texas School of Law, J.D., 2013
  • The University of Texas at Austin, B.A. Highest Honors, B.S., Highest Honors, May 2010


  • Co-author, Rigged Game: The Florida Supreme Court’s Decision in Plancher and the Abuse of Sovereign Immunity in Sports Law, SPORTS LITIG. ALERT, June 26, 2015.
  • Contributor, Does Tort System Make America Safer?, REUTERS (Nov. 21, 2014),
  • Author, Note, Mandating Injustice: The Preponderance of the Evidence Mandate Creates a New Threat to Due Process on Campus, 32 REV. LITIG. 65 (2013)


  • Featured as one of 25 “Lawyers on the Rise” in Texas Lawyer magazine, September 2017
  • Top 40 Under 40 by The National Trial Lawyers, 2018
  • Selected for membership in the Austin Bar Association/AYLA’s Leadership Academy, 2019
  • Texas Super Lawyers Rising Stars list, by Thomson Reuters, 2020, 2021

Ryan D. Ellis Rising Stars - Rated by Super Lawyers National Trial Lawyers Top 40 Under 40


  • Texas
  • United States District Courts for the Western, Eastern, and Southern Districts of Texas

Professional Affiliations

  • American Bar Association (member of Litigation Committee)
  • Texas Young Lawyers Association
  • Texas Bar Foundation (Fellow)

Contact Ryan:

Office: 512-439-4106

Mobile: 512-900-6557

Email | Download vCard

Texas Bar Foundation - Fellow

Howry Breen & Herman Building

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