Ryan McCarl has represented clients in high-stakes litigation across a wide range of practice areas. In addition to his litigation experience, he founded a tech startup and served on the faculty of the UCLA School of Law, where he researched artificial intelligence and created an Advanced Legal Writing course. McCarl’s book Elegant Legal Writing is currently under review by a major publisher.

Mr. McCarl has drafted briefs and motions in cases before state and federal trial and appellate courts, including the United States Supreme Court. His expertise in legal writing and strategy helps clients develop innovative and successful arguments in complex disputes.

Mr. McCarl’s arguments and briefs have been dispositive in several cases. A Tenth Circuit panel agreed with his claim preclusion argument and disposed of a decade-long antitrust suit against a global medical supplies manufacturer. The New York Court of Appeals cited a brief he drafted in establishing a right to a cautionary jury instruction in cross-race eyewitness identification cases. And the Illinois Supreme Court relied on a First Amendment overbreadth and due process argument he developed in unanimously striking down an Illinois statute prohibiting non-consensual audio recording.

Mr. McCarl clerked for the Honorable David M. Ebel on the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit and worked as a litigator at WilmerHale and Hueston Hennigan. He has published articles and book chapters on diverse topics including substantive due process, claim preclusion, constitutional vagueness doctrine, sovereign debt arbitration, and homeowners associations.

Mr. McCarl earned his J.D. with Honors from the University of Chicago Law School, where he was a member of the Chicago Journal of International Law. He earned an M.A. in International Relations and B.A. in Political Science at the University of Chicago, where he was a captain of the track team and broke the school record in cross country. He also earned an M.A. in Education at the University of Michigan and taught high school history and geography.


District of Columbia (inactive)
United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit


J.D. with Honors, The University of Chicago Law School
M.A., Education, The University of Michigan–Ann Arbor
M.A., International Relations, The University of Chicago
B.A., Political Science, The University of Chicago

Selected Publications and Presentations

Elegant Legal Writing (proposal under publisher review)
The Limits of Law and AI
, 90 U. Cin. L. Rev. ___ (forthcoming, 2022)
Legal Writing Fundamentals
(CLE presentation), Clear Law Institute (2021)
Business Property Insurance May Cover COVID-19 Related Losses, Daily Journal (2020) (with John Rushing)
Claim Preclusion Across Jurisdictions: Navigating the Labyrinth, Daily Journal (2019)
AI 101 for Lawyers (CLE presentation), Clear Law Institute (2019)
ICSID Jurisdiction Over International Mass Investment Arbitrations: Due Process and Default Rules, 51 Stan. J. Int’l L. 173 (2015)
When Homeowners Associations Go Too Far: Political Responses to Unpopular Rules in Common Interest Communities, 43 Real Estate L.J. 453 (2015)
Incoherent and Indefensible: An Interdisciplinary Critique of the Supreme Court’s Void-for-Vagueness Doctrine, 42 Hastings Const. L.Q. 73 (2014)
Creditors’ remedies, in Rosa M. Lastra and Lee Buchheit, eds., Sovereign Debt Management (with Mark Weidemaier) (Oxford Univ. Press 2014)

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