Robert J. Williams (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)
Robert J. Williams (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania)

Robert J. Williams

Licensed for 21 years

Practice Area: Aviation, Class Action, Construction Industry Practice 4 more areas of practice + 4 more

  • Peer Reviews
    5.0/5.0
Awards
AV Preeminent

Robert J. Williams

Serving Pittsburgh, PA view address

Partner at firm Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP

Serving Pittsburgh, PA view address

Awards AV Preeminent

About Robert J. Williams

Bob is chair of Schnader's Aviation Group and a trial attorney with two decades' experience representing global, national and regional companies in complex, high-stakes actions in federal and state courts, private and court-annexed arbitrations, and administrative agencies. He has substantial experience with a wide range of matters, including product liability, insurance coverage, claims handling and bad faith, construction, torts, property tax appeals, and commercial and business litigation. He also counsels companies on litigation avoidance strategies and risk management.

Bob is an aircraft owner and active private pilot, with an instrument rating and endorsements for high-performance and complex aircraft....

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Bob is chair of Schnader's Aviation Group and a trial attorney with two decades' experience representing global, national and regional companies in complex, high-stakes actions in federal and state courts, private and court-annexed arbitrations, and administrative agencies. He has substantial experience with a wide range of matters, including product liability, insurance coverage, claims handling and bad faith, construction, torts, property tax appeals, and commercial and business litigation. He also counsels companies on litigation avoidance strategies and risk management.

Bob is an aircraft owner and active private pilot, with an instrument rating and endorsements for high-performance and complex aircraft. He applies his practical and legal knowledge to the representation of virtually every type of aviation industry participant, including aircraft and component manufacturers, airports, air carriers and other commercial operators, repair stations, fixed base operators, pilots, flight instructors, mechanics and insurers. Bob recently completed a second term as the chairman of the Aviation Law Committee of the Defense Research Institute.

According to The Legal 500, Mr. Williams is recognized for his 'in-depth knowledge of product liability claims and the aviation sector' coupled with 'the ability to rapidly and strategically respond to procedural differences in various jurisdictions.'

He regularly speaks on diverse matters, and has recently given presentations covering the following subjects:
• Does Criminalization of Aviation Accidents Impact Safety?
• Reporting Requirements Under the Medicare Secondary Payer Statute
• Indemnity Clauses for Brokers and Insurers
•Aviation Insurance Coverage Differences Among State Laws
•Personal Jurisdiction over Foreign Corporations in the Wake of Daimler
•“So, you want to fly a drone?”

Bob also serves as a member of the firm's Associates Professional Development Committee and Retreat Committee.

AREAS OF EXPERIENCE

Representative Aviation and Product Liability Experience

•As lead trial and appellate counsel for a major airline, obtained dismissal of claims asserted by trans-Atlantic passenger under the Montreal Convention that airline failed to provide adequate medical attention following discharge of smoke in cabin, causing respiratory arrest and distress, damage to internal organs, and mental trauma.
•As lead trial and appellate counsel for a major metropolitan airport authority, obtained dismissal of eminent domain and civil rights claims brought by owner and operator of corporate jets over ownership of hangar and related facilities erected on the field.
•Co-lead trial counsel for claims asserted in federal court by aircraft owner and Part 135 operator against major international business jet manufacturer arising out of damages allegedly caused by factory service center during engine performance runs.
•Defended engine manufacturer in wrongful death action arising out of crash of an E-2C Hawkeye aircraft in the Arabian Gulf during Operation Enduring Freedom.
•Lead counsel for aviation engine component designer, manufacturer and overhauler in multiple crash cases involving fatalities and permanent injuries in multiple jurisdictions.
•Co-counsel for one of the world's leading aircraft engine manufacturers in nationwide litigation arising from a variety of military and civilian helicopter crashes.
•Lead counsel for holder of supplemental type certificate for major engine, propeller and airframe modifications in crash involving fatalities of prominent businessman and flight instructor.
•Defense of state police and helicopter EMS operator for claims arising out of crash involving multiple fatalities, and related prosecution of claims against federal government for alleged deficiencies in air traffic control.
•Defense of the country's largest helicopter EMS operator for claims arising out of crash involving fatalities and multiple permanent disabilities and injuries.
•Defense of fixed base operator alleged to have been responsible for loss of aircraft pressurization that resulted in crash killing prominent businessman and his spouse. Designed and supervised flight testing and simulations that were instrumental in negotiation of favorable settlement below cost of defense.
•Engineered substantial recovery on behalf of general contractor and project manager in action against defaulting subcontractor and surety in the construction of $750 million passenger terminal building of major hub airport.
•Counsel for one of the world's leading component manufacturers in actions arising from the fatal crash of an Army Air National Guard helicopter.
Representative Commercial Experience

•Lead defense counsel for global water treatment systems designer and manufacturer against claims arising out of $300 million construction of 710 megawatt and 1 million pph generation facility.
•Co-lead trial counsel for prosecution of trademark infringement, theft of trade secrets and unfair business competition claims in federal court on behalf of international designer and manufacturer of industrial steam generation equipment.
•Obtained multiple verdicts and judgments in favor of condominium council officers on breach of fiduciary duty and discrimination claims in related state and federal actions, including recovery of 100% of clients' attorneys' fees and costs of almost $400,000. Subsequently identified and played a key role in recovery of almost $3 million in assets that were fraudulently transferred to avoid satisfaction of clients' judgments.
•Lead defense counsel for world's largest cable, telecommunications and broadcast company in multiple actions involving real estate, contract and employment/agency claims.
•Successfully resolved class action filed against regional medical clinic for alleged Telephone Consumer Protection Act claims, inter alia, by proving lack of culpable intent, absence of requisite commonality and public health mandate as defense.
•Obtained defense verdict as lead trial counsel for site preparation contractor on fraud and lien avoidance claims arising out of construction of storage facility and apartment complex.
•Obtained defense verdict as lead trial counsel for insured in personal injury action involving staged accident and fraudulent medical claims by reputed member of organized crime syndicate.
Published Opinions

Reuben v. US Airways, 500 Fed. Appx. 103 (3d Cir. 2012)
In Re Kartman, 354 B.R. 70 (W.D.Pa. 2006)
McCabe v. State Farm, 36 F. Supp. 2d 666 (E.D.Pa. 1999)

COMMUNITY ACTIVITIES

•Veterans Claims Administration Network, American Bar Association, pro bono attorney
•Angel Flight Mid-Atlantic: volunteer pilot, community representative
•Leadership Pittsburgh XXIV
•Pilots N Paws, volunteer pilot
•Veterans Airlift Command, volunteer pilot

Clerkships

•Honorable Thomas N. O'Neill, Jr., U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania

Other Distinctions

•Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell
•Listed as Leading Aviation Attorney by Aviation Expert Guides 2015, 2016
•Pennsylvania Bar Association Pro Bono Award recipient, 2009
•Named a 'Pennsylvania Rising Star' by the publishers of Law & Politics and Super Lawyers-2005
•Listing in Madison's Registry of Who's Who Among Professionals and Executives-2005
•Noted as among “Lawyers on the Fast Track” by The Legal Intelligencer-2005
•Bernard S. Cheskin Memorial Scholarship recipient
Temple International and Comparative Law Journal, managing editor
•Andrew Mellon Scholar

News

09/13/2016

David Dziengowski Pins on Rank of Lieutenant Commander in JAG Corps

08/25/2016

Schnader's Aviation Group, Litigation Department Recognized by Corporate America

06/15/2016

Schnader's Aviation Group Nationally Ranked by Legal 500 USA for Fifth Consecutive Year

06/14/2016

Schnader Attorneys Named “Top Aviation Lawyers” by Institutional Investor

06/07/2016

Schnader Associate Lee C. Schmeer Pins on Rank of Major in the U.S. Air Force Reserve

06/06/2016

Schnader's Aviation Group Ranked Nationally by Chambers USA

05/05/2016

Schnader Receives Pennsylvania Youth Court Champion Award

02/29/2016

Partner Robert J. Williams Invited to Join International Association of Defense Counsel

11/16/2015

Robert Williams Named Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America

10/16/2015

Robert Williams Featured by Allegheny County Bar Association for Community Service

09/11/2015

Pittsburgh Attorneys Lead Constitution and Youth Court Projects at Local Charter School

07/30/2015

Schnader Recognizes Robert Williams and Nicole Reimann with Community Service and Pro Bono Awards

06/08/2015

Schnader's Aviation Group Again Ranked Among Top Firms in the United States

01/02/2015

Swooping in to Save the Day

10/01/2014

Robert Williams Appointed to Firm and DRI Leadership Positions

09/03/2013

Robert Williams Named Chair of the DRI Aviation Law Committee

09/18/2012

Robert Williams Reappointed Vice Chair of DRI's Aviation Law Committee

12/21/2011

Schnader Partner Robert J. Williams Noted in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette

11/10/2011

Robert Williams Appointed Vice Chair of DRI's Aerospace Law Committee

09/19/2011

Sixty-Eight Schnader Attorneys Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell

09/02/2011

Robert Williams Appointed Vice Chair of Membership for DRI's Aerospace Law Committee

01/13/2011

Schnader Representing the State of Maryland and The Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania in a Suit Filed Against the Federal Government Regarding a 2008 Medevac Crash

09/28/2009

Two Schnader Attorneys Honored with 2009 Pennsylvania Bar Association Pro Bono Awards

02/15/2008

Williams Appointed as Representative for Angel Flight Mid-Atlantic

01/03/2006

Schnader Names Three New Partners

12/09/2005

Five Schnader Attorneys Honored as Pennsylvania Rising Stars

08/22/2005

Robert Williams Noted as Among Lawyers on the Fast Track

Publications

Articles

08/28/2014

Keeping You Current and Informed

06/20/2014

Aviation Safety Unfairly Attacked

08/01/2004

Daubert's Unwritten Mandate: Win in the District Court

01/01/1995

“A Problematic Gap in International Immigration Law: Sale v. Haitian Centers Council”

Alerts

02/17/2015

Drone Propellers Aren't the Only Things Buzzing as the FAA Releases Proposed Regulations for the Commercial Operation of Unmanned Aerial Systems

07/27/2011

Florida Supreme Court Deepens Split of Authority on Meaning of Federal Limitation of Liability for Aircraft Owners and Lessors

Newsletters

10/16/2009

Pro Bono Newsletter Fall 2009

Speaking Engagements

03/07/2016

Robert Williams to Speak at PBI Program on Drones

09/10/2015

Robert Williams to Present at Aviation Insurance Conference 2015

06/01/2015

Bob Williams to Speak at ACI's Aviation Claims & Litigation Conference

05/02/2015

Schnader Attorneys to Present at 2015 AIA Conference

10/17/2013

Criminalization of Foreign Aviation Accidents

08/09/2012

Schnader Attorneys Present Does Criminalization of Aviation Accidents Impact Safety?

04/22/2009

Taking and Defending Effective Depositions: Including a View From the Bench

11/06/2008

Navigating the Risks of Aerospace Product Liability

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Areas of Law

  • Aviation
  • Class Action
  • Construction Industry Practice
  • Creditors' Rights and Business Restructuring Financial Services Litigation
  • Insurance Services
  • Litigation Services
  • Product Liability

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  • AV Preeminent
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Community Contributions

      Credentials

      Position
      Partner
      Admission Details
      Admitted in 1995, Pennsylvania
      1996, New Jersey
      U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
      U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
      U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
      Supreme Court of Pennsylvania
      Supreme Court of New Jersey
      Law School Attended
      Temple University Beasley School of Law
      Class of 1995
      J.D.
      magna cum laude
      University Attended
      University of Pittsburgh
      Class of 1992
      B.A.
      Birth Information
      Born in 1970
      1970
      Bar Fellowship
      of the Litigation Counsel of America

      10/16/2015

      Robert Williams Featured by Allegheny County Bar Association for Community Service

      09/11/2015

      Pittsburgh Attorneys Lead Constitution and Youth Court Projects at Local Charter School

      07/30/2015

      Schnader Recognizes Robert Williams and Nicole Reimann with Community Service and Pro Bono Awards

      06/08/2015

      Schnader's Aviation Group Again Ranked Among Top Firms in the United States

      01/02/2015

      Swooping in to Save the Day

      10/01/2014

      Robert Williams Appointed to Firm and DRI Leadership Positions

      09/03/2013

      Robert Williams Named Chair of the DRI Aviation Law Committee

      09/18/2012

      Robert Williams Reappointed Vice Chair of DRI's Aviation Law Committee

      12/21/2011

      Schnader Partner Robert J. Williams Noted in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette

      11/10/2011

      Robert Williams Appointed Vice Chair of DRI's Aerospace Law Committee

      09/19/2011

      Sixty-Eight Schnader Attorneys Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell

      09/02/2011

      Robert Williams Appointed Vice Chair of Membership for DRI's Aerospace Law Committee

      01/13/2011

      Schnader Representing the State of Maryland and The Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania in a Suit Filed Against the Federal Government Regarding a 2008 Medevac Crash

      09/28/2009

      Two Schnader Attorneys Honored with 2009 Pennsylvania Bar Association Pro Bono Awards

      02/15/2008

      Williams Appointed as Representative for Angel Flight Mid-Atlantic

      01/03/2006

      Schnader Names Three New Partners

      12/09/2005

      Five Schnader Attorneys Honored as Pennsylvania Rising Stars

      08/22/2005

      Robert Williams Noted as Among Lawyers on the Fast Track

      Publications

      Articles

      08/28/2014

      Keeping You Current and Informed

      06/20/2014

      Aviation Safety Unfairly Attacked

      08/01/2004

      Daubert's Unwritten Mandate: Win in the District Court

      01/01/1995

      “A Problematic Gap in International Immigration Law: Sale v. Haitian Centers Council”

      Alerts

      02/17/2015

      Drone Propellers Aren't the Only Things Buzzing as the FAA Releases Proposed Regulations for the Commercial Operation of Unmanned Aerial Systems

      07/27/2011

      Florida Supreme Court Deepens Split of Authority on Meaning of Federal Limitation of Liability for Aircraft Owners and Lessors

      Newsletters

      10/16/2009

      Pro Bono Newsletter Fall 2009

      Speaking Engagements

      03/07/2016

      Robert Williams to Speak at PBI Program on Drones

      09/10/2015

      Robert Williams to Present at Aviation Insurance Conference 2015

      06/01/2015

      Bob Williams to Speak at ACI's Aviation Claims & Litigation Conference

      05/02/2015

      Schnader Attorneys to Present at 2015 AIA Conference

      10/17/2013

      Criminalization of Foreign Aviation Accidents

      08/09/2012

      Schnader Attorneys Present Does Criminalization of Aviation Accidents Impact Safety?

      04/22/2009

      Taking and Defending Effective Depositions: Including a View From the Bench

      11/06/2008

      Navigating the Risks of Aerospace Product Liability Member:

      Professional Affiliations

      •Litigation Counsel of America, fellow
      •International Association of Defense Counsel, Member
      •DRI Aviation Law Committee, chair, 2013-2015; vice-chair, 2011-2013; Membership Subcommittee chair, 2010-2011
      •American Bar Association, member
      •Pennsylvania Bar Association, member
      •Allegheny County Bar Association, member Fellow: of the Litigation Counsel of America

      10/16/2015

      Robert Williams Featured by Allegheny County Bar Association for Community Service

      09/11/2015

      Pittsburgh Attorneys Lead Constitution and Youth Court Projects at Local Charter School

      07/30/2015

      Schnader Recognizes Robert Williams and Nicole Reimann with Community Service and Pro Bono Awards

      06/08/2015

      Schnader's Aviation Group Again Ranked Among Top Firms in the United States

      01/02/2015

      Swooping in to Save the Day

      10/01/2014

      Robert Williams Appointed to Firm and DRI Leadership Positions

      09/03/2013

      Robert Williams Named Chair of the DRI Aviation Law Committee

      09/18/2012

      Robert Williams Reappointed Vice Chair of DRI's Aviation Law Committee

      12/21/2011

      Schnader Partner Robert J. Williams Noted in the Pittsburgh Post Gazette

      11/10/2011

      Robert Williams Appointed Vice Chair of DRI's Aerospace Law Committee

      09/19/2011

      Sixty-Eight Schnader Attorneys Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell

      09/02/2011

      Robert Williams Appointed Vice Chair of Membership for DRI's Aerospace Law Committee

      01/13/2011

      Schnader Representing the State of Maryland and The Insurance Company of the State of Pennsylvania in a Suit Filed Against the Federal Government Regarding a 2008 Medevac Crash

      09/28/2009

      Two Schnader Attorneys Honored with 2009 Pennsylvania Bar Association Pro Bono Awards

      02/15/2008

      Williams Appointed as Representative for Angel Flight Mid-Atlantic

      01/03/2006

      Schnader Names Three New Partners

      12/09/2005

      Five Schnader Attorneys Honored as Pennsylvania Rising Stars

      08/22/2005

      Robert Williams Noted as Among Lawyers on the Fast Track

      Publications

      Articles

      08/28/2014

      Keeping You Current and Informed

      06/20/2014

      Aviation Safety Unfairly Attacked

      08/01/2004

      Daubert's Unwritten Mandate: Win in the District Court

      01/01/1995

      “A Problematic Gap in International Immigration Law: Sale v. Haitian Centers Council”

      Alerts

      02/17/2015

      Drone Propellers Aren't the Only Things Buzzing as the FAA Releases Proposed Regulations for the Commercial Operation of Unmanned Aerial Systems

      07/27/2011

      Florida Supreme Court Deepens Split of Authority on Meaning of Federal Limitation of Liability for Aircraft Owners and Lessors

      Newsletters

      10/16/2009

      Pro Bono Newsletter Fall 2009

      Speaking Engagements

      03/07/2016

      Robert Williams to Speak at PBI Program on Drones

      09/10/2015

      Robert Williams to Present at Aviation Insurance Conference 2015

      06/01/2015

      Bob Williams to Speak at ACI's Aviation Claims & Litigation Conference

      05/02/2015

      Schnader Attorneys to Present at 2015 AIA Conference

      10/17/2013

      Criminalization of Foreign Aviation Accidents

      08/09/2012

      Schnader Attorneys Present Does Criminalization of Aviation Accidents Impact Safety?

      04/22/2009

      Taking and Defending Effective Depositions: Including a View From the Bench

      11/06/2008

      Navigating the Risks of Aerospace Product Liability Member:

      Professional Affiliations

      •Litigation Counsel of America, fellow
      •International Association of Defense Counsel, Member
      •DRI Aviation Law Committee, chair, 2013-2015; vice-chair, 2011-2013; Membership Subcommittee chair, 2010-2011
      •American Bar Association, member
      •Pennsylvania Bar Association, member
      •Allegheny County Bar Association, member