Ryan Paulsen



Education and Clerkships

J.D., University of Texas School of Law, 2007, with high honors; Order of the Coif

B.S., Brigham Young University, 2003, magna cum laude

  • Justice Don R. Willett, Supreme Court of Texas (2007-2008)



Court Admissions

United States Supreme Court

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas




While clerking at the Supreme Court of Texas, Ryan Paulsen gained an appreciation for excellent appellate advocacy, learning by observation how to craft written arguments that resonate with judges and advocate for clients in the give-and-take of oral argument. Ryan now applies that experience to successfully represent his clients in both state and federal court.

Specifically, Ryan has worked on appeals that overturned a liquidated damages judgment at the Texas Supreme Court, reversed an employment discrimination judgment at the Dallas Court of Appeals, and affirmed a favorable summary judgment ruling at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. Ryan has also assisted successful trial teams, including obtaining a unanimous jury verdict and associated judgment vindicating the client’s rights in sensitive trade secrets.

Ryan also values opportunities to apply his skills to benefit the community. Working pro bono, Ryan helped one client overturn an order of dismissal on appeal to the Fifth Circuit and enabled another client and his family to obtain refuge from political oppression in their home country of Ethiopia. Ryan also serves actively in his local congregation.

Professional Recognition

  • Selected for inclusion in Texas Super Lawyers Rising Stars, Thomson Reuters, 2016-2018

Professional and Community Activities

  • State Bar of Texas, Appellate Section
  • Dallas Bar Association, Appellate Council Member, 2019-Present
  • J. Reuben Clark Law Society



Texas Supreme Court Grants Review of Five Cases Handled by Haynes and Boone

The Texas Supreme Court agreed to hear five cases that are being handled by Haynes and Boone’s Appellate Practice Group. The cases will be argued next fall and involve significant legal issues that are likely to be followed closely in Texas and beyond.

Selected Client Representations

  • Persuaded the Texas Supreme Court to vacate a $16.5 million judgment and deny injunctive relief in a highly contentious trade secret dispute. Pike v. Texas EMC Management, LLC, 610 S.W.3d 763 (Tex. 2020)
  • Convinced the Texas Supreme Court to affirm a take-nothing judgment dismissing defamation claims with prejudice. Reyes v. D Magazine Partners, LP, 571 S.W.3d 753 (Tex. 2019)
  • Obtained take-nothing judgment on various tort claims arising out of a failed drug test administered pursuant to the client’s drug safety program. Exxon Mobil Corp. v. Rincones, (Tex. 2017).
  • Reversed summary judgment and revived antitrust claims based on evidence of concerted action by defendant hospitals. Medical Center at Elizabeth Place, LLC v. Atrium Health System, 817 F.3d 934 (6th Cir. 2016).
  • Invalidated a $29 million liquidated damages provision in a renewable energy contract. FPL Energy, LLC v. TXU Portfolio Mgmt. Co., 426 S.W.3d 59 (Tex. 2014).
  • Obtained a permanent injunction on appeal to protect client’s trade secrets after previously securing a jury verdict and judgment awarding damages on trade secret and related claims. Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. v. Axis Technologies, LLC, 444 S.W.3d 251 (Tex. App.—Dallas 2014, no pet.).
  • Affirmed summary judgment in favor of corporate client in stock option backdating case brought by the Securities and Exchange Commission. SEC v. Bartek, 484 F. App’x 949 (5th Cir. 2012).
  • After filing of opening appellate briefs, opponent agreed to settle commercial dispute for almost $200 million less than its judgment. i2 Technologies, Inc. v. Dillards, Cause No. 05-10-01645-CV (Tex. App.—Dallas 2011).
  • Reversed a jury verdict on employment discrimination claims and affirmed a judgment notwithstanding the verdict on retaliation and hostile work environment claims. Southwestern Bell Telephone LP v. Edwards, 2011 WL 3672288 (Tex. App.—Dallas Aug. 23, 2011, no pet.).
  • Revived civil rights claim dismissed by the district court. McMillan v. Richmond, 400 F. App’x 878 (5th Cir. 2010).
  • Obtained remittitur in the district court prior to appeal, reducing punitive damages award by $77.6 million. IRCC, et al. v. Harold Simmons, et al., 192nd Judicial District Court, Dallas, Texas (2009).

Selected Publications and Speeches

  • "Amicus Practice at the Texas Supreme Court," co-author, The Texas Law Book, April 29, 2020.
  • "Plain Text Interpretation: Theory and Practice in the Texas Courts," co-author with Andrew Guthrie, The Advocate, Volume 71, Summer 2015.
  • "Mandamus: The Hurdles to Relief," co-author with Karen Precella, State Bar of Texas Civil Appellate Practice 101, September 5, 2012.
  • "United States Supreme Court Update," The Appellate Advocate, Vol. 22, No. 3, Spring 2010 ­– Present
  • "Mohawk: Limited Interlocutory Review of Federal Court Orders to Disclose Potentially Privileged Attorney-Client Information," Karen Precella and Ryan Paulsen,The Appellate Advocate, Vol. 22, No. 4, Summer 2010.

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