Consumer Class Action Defense
Telephone Consumer Protection Act Litigation and Compliance
Complex Commercial Litigation
Privacy Litigation and Compliance
University of Florida, College of Law
J.D., magna cum laude
Order of the Coif
Florida Law Review, Board Member
Florida State University
- B. Finance, summa cum laude
- B. Philosophy, summa cum laude
- State Bar of Georgia
- State Bar of Florida
U.S. Courts of Appeal for the Eleventh and Second Circuit
U.S. District Courts for the Northern and Middle Districts of Georgia and Southern, Middle and Northern Districts of Florida
Georgia Supreme Court and Court of Appeals
Florida Supreme Court and Courts of Appeal
Ryan D. Watstein
Ryan Watstein is the partner in charge of KCO’s complex commercial litigation and consumer class action defense team. In this role, Ryan has successfully defended companies as lead counsel in a variety of litigation matters, including approximately 30 consumer class actions in the past few years alone. In none of those cases has a class been certified.
Ryan has developed particular and recognized expertise defending companies in lawsuits filed under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, or TCPA. In the past several years, Ryan has been lead counsel in almost 100 such lawsuits, routinely obtaining dismissals without any payment by his clients. A self-proclaimed “TCPA nerd,” Ryan reads virtually every TCPA decision and article published. This allows Ryan to efficiently and effectively advise companies in TCPA compliance and litigation-avoidance, in addition to defending them in court.
Ryan also has substantial experience litigating many other types of consumer claims and business disputes, including those involving privacy, breach of contract, fraud, trade secrets, etc. The disputes Ryan has litigated have involved billions of dollars in exposure and have spanned more than two dozen jurisdictions and arbitration tribunals across the country.
In 2013, Ryan was the youngest lawyer in Atlanta to be recognized as a “Rising Star” by Georgia Super Lawyers and Atlanta Magazine, and has received that recognition consistently since. Ryan was also recently recognized as one of Georgia’s “Legal Elite—Best Lawyers in Georgia” by Georgia Trend Magazine.
Prior to entering private practice, Ryan attended law school at the University of Florida, where he served on the Florida Law Review, graduated magna cum laude, was inducted as a member of Order of the Coif, and received several awards for the highest grade in the class. Before that, Ryan attended Florida State University on scholarship, graduating summa cum laude with bachelor’s degrees in both philosophy and finance.
Ryan recently graduated from Leadership DeKalb and served on United Way’s DeKalb Advisory Board. Ryan also volunteers as a moot court competition judge, and regularly speaks on a panel at Georgia State University about commercial litigation. He is also a past Board Member of the Druid Hills Civic Association. Ryan is an avid skier, traveler, and—most importantly—proud father.
- Successfully defended numerous corporate clients against more than 100 putative class and individual lawsuits asserted under a variety of state and federal statutes, including the TCPA, FDCPA, FCCPA, TILA, Rosenthal Act, state privacy statutes, state call recording statutes, state debt collection statutes, and so on. In most cases, obtained voluntary dismissal with no payment by client or prevailed on dispositive motion.
- Conducted audits of consumer-contact strategies to ensure compliance with various federal and state statutes and regulations governing outbound contact with consumers, including the TCPA. In connection with this, drafted arbitration clauses, provisions authorizing compliant consumer contact, and other provisions to minimize legal exposure.
- Counseled businesses in a variety of industries regarding litigation avoidance and compliance with a variety of state statutes that govern contact with consumers, such as the TCPA, FDCPA, CAN-SPAM, and California’s Invasion of Privacy Act.
- Retained by national bank to handle appeal involving “certified question of great public importance” before Florida Supreme Court. Prevailed on appeal, and published decision set standard applicable to motions to set aside judicial foreclosure sales in the State of Florida.
- After substantial evidentiary hearing, obtained nationwide injunctive relief in action between industry-leading competitors, enjoining opposing party’s trade secret theft and unfair competition.
- Obtained summary judgment in Fortune 50 client’s favor on all counts in lawsuit seeking millions in damages for breach of contract and alleged violations of Department of Housing and Urban Development Regulations. After oral argument, the Eleventh Circuit affirmed in a published opinion that contains favorable rulings on multiple issues of first impression.
- Defended food producer against breach-of-contract claims filed by client’s supplier. After filing counterclaims against supplier, filing third-party claims against another party, and prevailing on all motions filed in case, resolved case through favorable settlement that not only resulted in no payment by client, but actually required other parties to pay client significant sum.
- Retained by financial services company to challenge the United States Patent and Trademark Office’s final refusal to register one of their most valuable trademarks. On appeal, the Trademark Trial and Appeals Board reversed and ordered the United States Patent and Trademark Office to register the mark.
- Successfully litigated numerous trademark infringement, false advertising, and unfair trade practices claims in federal court in multiple jurisdictions.
- Prosecuted breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract and other claims arising out of a significant Ponzi scheme in Georgia superior court. After oral argument, defeated defendant’s motion for summary judgment on eight of ten claims. The day before trial, obtained confidential settlement for clients.
- Retained by financial institution facing res judicata issues as a result of former attorney’s loss in North Carolina Court of Appeals. Re-filed action in federal court, obtained sanctions award against opposing counsel, forcing favorable settlement that allowed client to circumvent res judicata issue.
- Defended business client in multi-million-dollar breach-of-contract action. In federal district court, obtained dismissal of all claims with prejudice. On appeal, obtained settlement that resulted in dismissal of appeal without any payment by client.
- In action against materials supplier, obtained judgment in client’s favor. Thereafter, filed fraudulent transfer suit against insolvent judgment debtor, forcing favorable settlement for client.
- Defended commercial property owner against lawsuit alleging client tortiously interfered with company’s attempts to rezone adjacent property and build an energy plant by filing various administrative petitions. Obtained complete dismissal of claims on motion to dismiss.
- Prosecuted multiple contract-based claims against multi-billion-dollar competitor of pharmaceutical company client. After mediation, obtained favorable settlement for client.
- Successfully litigated a wide range of other disputes on behalf of plaintiffs and defendants across numerous industries, including disputes involving partnership and LLC breakups, breach of contract, fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, professional malpractice, theft of trade secrets, toxic torts, trademark infringement, and violation of various federal and state regulations and statutes.
- Matt Bernardini, Charter Looks to Nix TCPA Suit Over Unwanted Calls, LAW360, December 12, 2018
- Christopher Crosby, Feds Oppose Time Warner Appeal of TCPA’s Constitutionality, LAW360, October 4, 2017
- Christopher Crosby, Feds Say Debt Collector’s TCPA Constitutional Fight Fails, LAW360, November 3, 2017
- Shayna Posses, Charter Customer Blasts Arbitration Bid in TCPA Spat, LAW360, August 29, 2017
- Adam Sage, Time Warner Unit Wants Opposing Atty, or Testimony, Barred, LAW360, December 10, 2015
- Greg Land, Injunction Bars TitleMax from DMV Records, Rivals’ Stores, FULTON COUNTY DAILY REPORT, June 10, 2015
- Greg Land, Greenberg Traurig is Disqualified in 2 TitleMax Suits, FULTON COUNTY DAILY REPORT, March 24, 2015
- Aebra Coe, Greenberg Traurig DQ’d For Conflict In Auto Title Loan Row, LAW360, March 4, 2015
- Natalie Rodriguez, Baby Food Packager Can’t Make Spoliage Suit Go Bye-Bye, LAW360, December 14, 2011
- Morgan, et al. v. Glob. Payments Check Servs., Inc., No. 2:17-CV-01771, 2018 WL 934579 (E.D. Cal. Feb. 15, 2018)
- Law Offices of Shimshon Wexler, P.C., et al. v. AICOM Sols. LLC, No. 1:17-CV-1084-MHC, 2017 WL 5047903 (N.D. Ga. Oct. 30, 2017)
- Reynolds v. Time Warner Cable, Inc., No. 16-CV-6165W, 2017 WL 362025 (W.D.N.Y. Jan. 25, 2017)
- Errington v. Time Warner Cable Inc., No. 2:15-cv-02196, 2016 WL 2930696 (C.D. Cal. May 18, 2016)
- In Re Brookwood Funding, LLC, No. 86162901, 2016 WL 1045682 (Trademark Tr. & App. Bd. Feb. 25, 2016)
- Brookwood Funding, LLC v. Avant Credit Corp., Inc., No. 1:14-CV-2960, 2015 WL 11504556 (N.D. Ga. July 28, 2015)
- Olin v. JPMC Specialty Mortg., LLC, 175 So. 3d 296 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 2015)
- Bates v. JPMorgan Chase Bank, NA, 768 F.3d 1126 (11th Cir. 2014)
- Arsali v. Chase Home Fin. LLC, 121 So. 3d 511, 512 (Fla. 2013)
- Deutsche Bank Nat’l Trust Co. v. Adams, No. 5:12-CV-00280, 2013 WL 12159091 (E.D.N.C. Jan. 4, 2013)
- Bates v. J.P. Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., No. 4:12-CV-43-CDL, 2013 WL 5755583 (M.D. Ga. Oct. 23, 2013)
- Out of Jail and Out of Luck: The Effect of Negligent Hiring Liability and the Criminal Record Revolution on an Ex-Offender’s Employment Prospects, 61 U. Fla. L. Rev. 581 (2009)
- Recognized as one of Georgia Trend’s “Legal Elite – The Best Lawyers in Georgia”
- Recognized as “Rising Star” by Georgia Super Lawyers and Atlanta Magazine in 2013 and 2016-2018 (youngest lawyer to be recognized in 2013)
- Leadership DeKalb, Class of 2015
- United Way, DeKalb County Advisory Board Member (former Community Engagement Chair)
- Georgia Intrastate Moot Court Competition, Oral Argument Subcommittee Member
- Druid Hills Civic Association, Former Board Member
- University of Florida Levin College of Law Alumni Association
- Florida State University Alumni Association