William A. Ruskin

WILLIAM A. RUSKIN is a Member of the Firm in the Litigation, Corporate Services, and Health Care and Life Sciences practices, in the firm's New York office. For more than 25 years, Mr. Ruskin has represented chemical manufacturers nationally in matters involving the defense of products liability, toxic tort, and environmental actions involving claims of serious injury and damage to persons and property.

Mr. Ruskin has received an "AV Preeminent" Peer Review Rating by Martindale-Hubbell, signifying the highest level of professional excellence. In addition, he has been selected for inclusion in The American Lawyer and Martindale-Hubbell's Top Rated Lawyers 2013 list in Energy, Environmental & Natural Resources. In 2010 and 2011, he was recognized as one of the top litigation attorneys in New York City, in Avenue magazine's "Legal Elite" list.

Industries Represented

Pharmaceuticals / Medical Devices: Defends drug and medical device products liability cases involving silicone breast implants, Ephedra dietary supplements, NSAIDs, anti-seizure drugs, anti-depressants, and drugs targeted by FDA as "imminent hazards." Formerly in-house products liability counsel for CIBA-GEIGY.

Industrial Chemicals: Defends toxic tort and products liability cases involving construction and pipe chemicals, lead paint, epoxies and resins, polymers, coatings, urethanes, molding compounds, and UV stabilizers.

Oil and Gas Industry: Represents oil companies in the defense of (1) property damage claims arising from leaking underground storage tanks and oil pipelines and (2) personal injury claims arising from alleged benzene exposure.

Agricultural Chemicals: Defends toxic tort litigations involving pesticides in residential and commercial settings and crop damage claims by growers as a result of alleged herbicide phytotoxcity or lack of efficacy.

Asbestos: Serves as national coordinating counsel for a chemical manufacturer in the defense of its premises liability asbestos cases.

Construction Industry: Represents manufacturers of products used at construction sites, including skid loaders, propane heaters, scaffolding and safety equipment, and contractors in mold remediation disputes.

Real Estate: Assists real estate and business lawyers in addressing the three environmental liability questions that arise in every real estate and business transaction: Is there a significant environmental problem? Can we estimate the cost? Can we resolve the problem? Experienced in evaluating potential environmental risks and managing environmental liabilities involving Brownsfields, commercial development, and residential construction.

Representative Matters

  • Obtained judgment and declaratory relief in federal district court in New Jersey on CERCLA and Spill Act environmental cost recovery claims following three month trial in 2009.
  • Defense of New York putative consumer class action involving androstendione and norandrostendione supplements (the "Andro" litigation).
  • Defense of Louisiana putative class action alleging homeowner exposure to Normally Occurring Radioactive Material as a result of oil pipe yard cleaning operations.
  • Obtained summary judgment on behalf of acrylic plastic manufacturer in Happyland Social Club Fire Litigation involving 87 wrongful death claims.
  • Trial of toxic tort case in federal court in Mississippi arising from sale of former chemical manufacturing facility involving fear of cancer and increased risk of disease claims.
  • Coordinated the national defense of products liability cases involving pharmaceutical drug banned by the FDA as an "imminent hazard."
  • Successful defense of CERCLA and contractual claims in federal district court in Wisconsin involving corporate veil piercing and corporate succession issues.
  • Negotiated Value Assurance Programs to resolve mass tort homeowner diminution of property value environmental claims.
  • Resolved through mediation 42 homeowner toxic tort claims alleging toxic air emissions against polymer manufacturer labeled by the Attorney General as "worst polluter in the history of Connecticut."

Mr. Ruskin is a frequent speaker on products liability, toxic tort, and litigation management issues, and has been a guest lecturer on environmental issues at Syracuse University College of Law and Columbia. The author of numerous published articles, Mr. Ruskin also writes Epstein Becker Green's Toxic Tort Litigation Blog. He has commented on important products liability and toxic tort developments on NPR's Marketplace and on The Verdict, a Canadian national television news program, and has been quoted in BusinessWeek, Financial Times, Product/Liability Law360, and other publications. He is a certified mediator for the SDNY and mediates disputes in that court on a pro bono basis.

Mr. Ruskin is Chair of the Epstein Becker Green Pro Bono & Community Service Committee in the firm's New York office, and he serves on the Board of the New York League of Conservation Voters Education Fund, a not-for-profit organization that informs the public on environmental issues. He is also a member of the Board of the Connecticut League of Conservation Voters Education Fund.

Contact William A. Ruskin

Contact William A. Ruskin

Epstein Becker & Green, P.C.
Member of the Firm
250 Park Avenue
New York, New York  10177
Phone: (212) 351-4740
Fax: (212) 878-8740


Service Area

Statewide service provider in:
  • Connecticut
  • New York