Louis J. Rizzo, Jr.
Louis J. Rizzo, Jr., Reger Rizzo & Darnall’s Managing Partner, is an experienced litigator, successfully representing clients in commercial disputes, bringing matters to efficient and effective conclusions. By taking the time at the commencement of a matter to understand his clients’ business model and goals for each particular dispute, Mr. Rizzo is able to help the client navigate the process to resolution; through negotiated settlement, or trial when necessary. These skills have allowed clients to entrust complex commercial litigation matters to Mr. Rizzo, including his recent designation as National Coordinating Counsel for a Fortune 500 Company’s products liability litigation program.
Litigation Experience. Mr. Rizzo’s trial experience includes employment discrimination matters, complex commercial litigation, insurance coverage and bad faith disputes, premises and automobile liability including trucking liability, franchise litigation, professional liability, subrogation, and representation of creditors in bankruptcy proceedings, as well as construction site claims and construction defect claims. Mr. Rizzo has a passion for U.S. history and has frequently drawn on that passion by incorporating lessons from history into his trial presentations, to great effect.
Crisis Management. Mr. Rizzo has extensive experience counseling a wide range of clients with regard to corporate crises and matters involving significant legal, financial, and media exposure. Mr. Rizzo focuses on managing all aspects of a potential crisis, so that his clients can remain focused on running their business. Throughout his career, he has helped leading institutions prepare, respond and manage the many complex aspects of criminal and OSHA investigations. He works closely with corporate management teams to minimize legal exposure, protect the reputation of the organization, preserve evidence and attorney-client privileges and provide input for media statements, so that if and when a suit is filed, the client is prepared and the case is the strongest position for defense.
Some of Mr. Rizzo’s more notable, high-profile crisis management experiences, include:
- Defended the owners of a day care in the infamous “day care fight club” case, in which the day care was sued after film surfaced of toddlers being allowed/encouraged by teachers to fight each other.
- Represented the owners of a national competition event facility in the “Punkin Chunkin” case, after suit was brought by a volunteer who was injured and rendered paraplegic at this seasonal event involving pumpkin catapulting.
- Defended the owners of the Miss Delaware pageant in the famous “Miss Delaware” case, in which a scandal arose after an eligibility dispute.
- Represented a road construction contractor in a road construction fatality case in which a teenager died while traversing through a construction zone. The opinion from this case established the legal standard for contractor duty on DOT projects.
Civil Litigation. In addition to handling more than 60 jury trials, Mr. Rizzo has extensive experience in all aspects of civil litigation. He has litigated discrimination claims and civil rights actions before state agencies and in federal court. Mr. Rizzo has represented multiple clients in bankruptcy proceedings including trade creditors, equipment lessors, insurance companies, service providers and contractors. He frequently represents clients in preference actions, receiverships, dissolutions and fraudulent conveyance matters. He has also handled matters on appeal through state and federal appellate courts.
Franchise Experience. Mr. Rizzo also has extensive experience in the franchise industry, specifically with regards to franchise litigation including disputes over franchise agreements and terminations and insurance coverage issues for both franchisees and franchisors. He has litigated tort liability issues for franchisees and franchisors, and of specific note, litigated the leading Delaware case on franchisor vicarious liability.
J.D., Villanova University School of Law (1993)
B.A. English, Fordham University (1989)
Delaware Bar Association
Maryland Bar Association
American Bar Association
Designated Instructor, Delaware Department of Insurance
Member, Claims and Litigation Management Alliance (CLM)
Presenter, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and Maryland Insurance Coverage & Bad Faith Law. Esurance Insurance Services, Inc. (March 31, 2016)
Presenter, Strategic Business Planning Workshop. The Wharton Small Business Development Center. (November 17, 2015)
Presenter, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices of America, Inc. Legal Conference. (September 30, 2015)
Presenter, Use of Technology at Trial. Reger Rizzo & Darnall Seminar. (April 26, 2013)
Presenter, Bad Faith Insurance Litigation in Delaware. National Business Institute. (December 2007)
Presenter, Winning Your First Civil Trial in Delaware: What They Didn't Teach You in Law School. National Business Institute. (December 2005)
Quoted, Reger Rizzo Adds Retired Delaware Superior Court Judge to ADR Group. The Legal Intelligencer. (August 21, 2017)
Author, Litigation Trends or “What Was Your Favorite Superbowl Commercial?” Reger Rizzo & Darnall Client Alert. (March 2017)
Featured, Reger Rizzo Partners Help Raise Money for Autism Delaware. The Delaware Law Weekly. (June 28, 2016)
Quoted, Workers' Compensation Dismissal Bars Negligence Lawsuit. Delaware Law Weekly. (July 29, 2015)
Quoted, Small, Midsize Firms Adapt to Increased Scrutiny. The Pittsburgh Post Gazette. (May 26, 2015)
Quoted, Small, Midsize Firms Adapt to Increased Scrutiny. The Legal Intelligencer. (May 19, 2015)
Mentioned, People in the News. The Legal Intelligencer. (November 21, 2014)
Contributing Editor, Insurance Bad Faith: A Compendium of State Law. DRI, The Voice of the Defense Bar. (Fall 2006)
2011 Distinguished Service Award from the Defense Counsel of Delaware
2006 Distinguished Service Award from the Defense Research Institute (DRI)