Andrew Ackley

Outside the Office

When not practicing law, Andrew spends most of his time with his wife, three children, and three dogs.  He likes playing blues guitar, building and fixing things, and Scuba Diving.  Andrew is a certified PADI Divemaster with a specialty certification for wreck diving.  Every year since becoming a lawyer, Andrew has also served as a volunteer board member of charitable organizations.

People describe me as aggressive and brash when I’m in battle mode.  That may be.  I have an ingrained contempt for unfairness.   My grandparents escaped Europe right before World War II.  My step-father’s parents were interned in the United States.  I was raised in the shadows of two sides of a war.  

In college I was drawn to the study of humanities and the law.  I was fascinated with subjects involving the moral standards of society.  At the University of Oregon, I studied political science and geology (due to my lingering childhood dream of becoming an astronaut and paleontologist).  I took Spanish and decided why not take French too.  Graduating Phi Beta Kappa and magna cum laude got me into the University of Washington Law School at 22. 

Now ten years into my career, I was second chair to Karen Koehler in the four-month long Ride the Ducks trial involving forty plaintiffs, four defendants, and eight different complex legal claims.  The trial resulted in an unprecedented $123 million verdict.  I have had the privilege of representing the family of a young woman who was abandoned and drowned while Scuba diving, a mentally disabled man who fell victim to millions of dollars in predatory business loans, a man who survived nine gunshot wounds but lost the use of his legs, the surviving spouse and son of a horrific condominium fire, and many more incredible people deserving of justice in the face of wrongdoing.  My cases usually involve scientific subject matter, complex issues of law, and demanding investigations. 

Senior lawyers and peers call me a natural.  It’s true that briefing, argument, the subject matter of a case, all come easily to me.  But I was not a true advocate until my ideas about fairness turned into convictions.  That only happened after I saw unfairness myself, confronted my own failures, and felt the enormous responsibility of protecting my children.

I love what I do because in helping others enforce laws I help protect my own family.  Because the law relates to society and the world around us, I also get to learn about lots of cool subjects, like medicine, psychology, physics, and engineering.  Even if I can’t be an astronaut paleontologist, maybe one day there will be a case about space dinosaurs.

 For more details about Andrew, please visit his personal website. 

+ Awards & Recognitions

  • Named as Washington State Rising Stars Lawyer, Super Lawyers, 2013-2019
  • Phi Beta Kappa graduation honors, University of Oregon, 2006
  • C.Z. Smith Public Service Award Nominee, University of Washington School of Law, 2009

+ Memberships & Leadership

  • Washington State Association for Justice (WSAJ): Products Liability Section Chair, 2018-2019 • Legislative Steering Committee Member, 2015 - present • Public Affairs Committee Member, 2011 - 2015 • New Member Committee Member, 2011 - 2014
  • Yellow Wood Academy: Board of Directors, Chair 2017 - present
  • Youth and Family Services Foundation: Board Member, 2010 - 2016
  • American Association for Justice

+ Articles & Publications

To view the article please click the 🔍 link, where applicable.

  • Washington State Association for Justice Annual Convention, "Lessons from the Ride the Ducks Trial," 2019
  • Washington State Association for Justice Webinar, "Wrongful Death Damages," 2019
  • Washington State Association for Justice Trial News, "Non-Delegable Duty Doctrine Can Defeat Manufacturer Excuses," 2019 🔍
  • Washington State Association for Justice, Winter Conference, Co-Chair and Presenter, 2018
  • Washington State Association for Justice, Trial News, “Excluding Wickizer and Partin,” 2018 🔍
  • Oregon Trial Lawyers Association, Trial Lawyer, “The Nuts and Bolts of Social Media,” 2016
  • Winning With Discovery Seminar, “Resisting and Compelling Discovery of Social Media,” 2015
  • “What Judges Want You to Know About Social Media in Civil Litigation,” Chair 2015
  • Anatomy and Physiology 101 for Attorneys Seminar, “Medical Exams and the Legal Process,” 2014
  • Oregon Trial Lawyers Association, Trial Lawyer, "Protecting Your Client From Social Media Self-Destruction,” 2013
  • Student Legal Services Wester United States Regional Meeting, “Cyber-Torts,” 2013
  • Anatomy and Physiology 101 for Attorneys Seminar, “Medicine in Personal Injury” 2013
  • UW Student Legal Services, “Insurance Claims and Tort Liability,” 2012
  • Trial Revolution Seminar, “Direct Examination (Trial Techniques),” 2012
  • “Social Media in Personal Injury Discovery” Webinar, 2012
  • Motor Vehicle Accident Deskbook, 2009, The Jury Trial chapter contributor
  • Journal of East Asia and International Law Self-Diagnosing Medical Malpractice, 2007, "How Japan’s Physician Self-Reporting Procedures Undermine Legal Deterrence and Medical Care" 🔍

Recent Cases