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Ryan J. Kohler


Ryan J. Kohler is a trial attorney in the firm’s Pasadena office, with a practice focus on professional liability, employment matters, construction, and business litigation. In the construction field, he has helped clients on a wide range of issues including contract formation, risk management, unpaid fee resolution, and liability defense. He also helps a broad range of clients with employment and HR issues, including wage and hour claims, discrimination, retaliation, and the defense of employment lawsuits in courts and administrative state agencies. Mr. Kohler also helps clients respond to employment issues as they arise and assists employers in structuring effective and practical personnel policies, handbooks, and protocols to help minimize employment-related litigation.

In addition, Mr. Kohler is active on committees for the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), and involved with the American Institute of Architects – Los Angeles Chapter (AIA-LA), and Professionals in Human Resources Association (PIHRA). He is also a trustee of the Pasadena Bar Association.

Mr. Kohler received his undergraduate degree from Florida State University and his law degree from the University of Southern California Law School. His recent publications and seminars include The Limits of Reasonable Accommodation, Zen and the Art of Contractual Indemnity, and Inquiring Minds and the FMLA.


Defense Verdict for Engineer in Design Defect Case: Owner alleged client negligently designed civil engineering features, requiring total reconstruction of the area of work. We told the jury the matter could have been resolved through the contracts’ RFI process without any reconstruction work. CCM+S won a defense verdict at trial and obtained an award of attorney’s fees for the client.

Obtained Favorable Resolution for Employer in Sexual Harassment Matter: Employee alleged head of company engaged in a pattern of sexual harassment. Employer vigorously denied employee’s claim. CCM+S resolved the matter confidentially for a reasonable amount before Plaintiff filed a lawsuit; the settlement involved the resignation of the employee making the allegations.

Won Payment and Dismissal of Claims on Behalf of Contractor: Owner failed to pay final invoices, and contractor brought claim for unpaid fees. Owner cross-claimed for fraud, breach of contract, and unfair business practices. After the start of trial, owner agreed to dismiss all claims and pay our client all monies owed plus reasonable attorney’s fees.

Defense Verdict for Engineer Against Property Owner: Owner blamed engineer for project delay and cost overruns. Engineer argued owner caused the delays by failing to authorize additional services and that owner’s damage claims were inflated. After trial, a jury found for Engineer and denied any recovery to Owner.

Obtained Favorable Settlement for Employer in Labor Matter: Employee alleged failure to pay reimbursements and overtime. Employer contended that employee was exempt and received all appropriate payments. The claim settled after a preliminary Labor Commission hearing for a significantly reduced amount once employee agreed to dismiss most of the claims.

Won Arbitration in Favor of Architect and Personal Liability on Part of LLC Owner: Owner claimed architect delayed project and overcharged for services and demanded a seven-figure payment. Architect denied these claims and brought its own claim for unpaid final invoice. After arbitration of claim, arbitrator ruled in favor of architect and awarded architect unpaid fees and reasonable attorney’s fees against owner’s LLC. After obtaining entry of judgment in Court, owner claimed the LLC lacked the ability to pay the judgment. CCM+S argued the owner was abusing the corporate form, and the court agreed and found the owner should be personally liable as well, resulting in owner’s payment of judgment to Architect.

  • State Bar of California
  • Pasadena Bar Association
  • Association of Southern California Defense Counsel
  • American Bar Association
  • Los Angeles County Bar Association
  • The Law and Your Practice: How to Protect Your Firm
  • What To Do When The California Architects Board Comes Calling Building Information Modeling: A 3D Picture of Liability?
  • New Law Fights the Unauthorized Use of Plans and Strengthens Rights of California Architects