Ryan L. Woody is a partner and concentrates his practice on complex defense and subrogation litigation. He is nationally recognized for subrogation, reimbursement, lien resolution issues, and healthcare defense, especially ERISA and Medicare Advantage. Ryan represents clients in numerous federal courts and arbitrations around the country. He is a frequent speaker and has contributed to numerous articles and national treatises on insurance coverage, workers’ compensation subrogation, and ERISA and federal health insurance, including FEHBA and Medicare Advantage. In 2008, he was named a Rising Star by SuperLawyers Magazine, an award given only to the top 2.5% of young lawyers in the State, and in 2012, he was named a Leading Lawyer by Milwaukee Magazine.

Ryan also has a special interest in environmental and natural resources law. He is a member of the Natural Resources Division of the American Bar Association. He serves as legal counsel to the Ruffed Grouse Society, a national wildlife conservation association as well as the Wisconsin County Forests Association.

Pro Hac Vice Admissions
Approved to practice pro hac vice in Colorado, Illinois, Nebraska, the U.S. District Court Northern District of Alabama, the U.S. District Court Western District of Arkansas, the U.S. District Court Northern District of California, U.S. District Court District of Connecticut, U.S. District Court Northern District of Georgia, the U.S. District Court of the Middle District of Florida, the U.S. District Court District of Hawaii, U.S. District Court Northern District of Iowa, U.S. District Court District of Kansas,  the U.S. District Court Eastern District of Louisiana, the U.S. District Court Middle District of Louisiana, the U.S. District Court District of Minnesota, the U.S. District Court Southern District of Mississippi, U.S. District Court Eastern District of New York, U.S. District Court Southern District of New York, the U.S. District Court District of New Mexico, the U.S. District Court Southern District of Ohio, the U.S. District Court Northern District of Oklahoma, the U.S. District Court Western District of Oklahoma, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, U.S. District Court Western District of Pennsylvania, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, the U.S. District Court Western District of Texas, U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington and the U.S. District Court District of Wyoming.

Reported Decisions

Applegate-Bader Farm v. Wisconsin Dep’t of Revenue, 2018 WL 2943835 (Wis. Cir. Ct. 2018) (Court declared Wis. Adm. Code. § Tax 18.05(1)(d) [pertaining to the classification of certain agricultural lands] to be invalid as a result of Department’s failure to comply with proper rule-making procedures.)

It’s Greek to Me, Inc. v. Fisher, 2018 WL 953111 (D. Kan. Feb. 20, 2018) (First district court within the 10th Circuit to hold that attorney is a proper defendant for purposes of an ERISA 502(a)(3) equitable lien by agreement, distinguishing the 8th Circuit’s Goding decision.)

Vestal v. First Recovery Grp., LLC, 292 F.Supp.3d 1304 (M.D. Fla. 2018) (Court held post-amendment MTPLA version applied to Medicaid enrollee’s claims and also achieved dismissal of all claims against subrogation vendor.)

Mem’l Hermann Health Sys. v. Pennwell Corp. Med. & Vision Plan, 2017 WL 6561165 (S.D. Tex. Dec. 22, 2017) (Achieved dismissal of medical provider’s derivative ERISA claims based on applicable anti-assignment provision in the ERISA benefit plan.)

Reg’l Med. Ctr. of San Jose v. WH Administrators, Inc.,  2017 WL 6513441 (N.D. Cal. Dec. 20, 2017) (Successful defense of medical providers ERISA claims based on anti-assignment provisions in the applicable plan document.)

Magallan v. Zurich Am. Ins. Co., 2017 WL 4158767 (N.D. Okla. Sept. 18, 2017), 2017 WL 4012964 (N.D. Okla. Sept. 12, 2017) (Defense of North Dakota employer from claims for UM coverage, bad faith and prosecution of workers’ compensation subrogation claim.)

Henrikson v. Choice Prod. USA, LLC, 2017 WL 449591 (D. Minn. Feb. 2, 2017) (Achieved dismissal of Plaintiff’s claims under the Affordable Care Act that a self-funded plan must cover Essential Health Benefits.)

Amy’s Kitchen, Inc. v. Campbell, 2017 WL 264062 (N.D. Cal. Jan. 20, 2017) (Decision on Motion to Dismiss counterclaim under ERISA 502(c) seeking statutory penalties against plan administrator for allegedly failing to provide certain documents.)

HNI Corp. v. Hess,  2017 WL 412994 (M.D. Pa. Jan. 31, 2017) (Post-Montanile equitable lien by agreement action under ERISA 502(a)(3) allowing judgment against plan member who absconded with the settlement funds.)

Providence Health & Servs.-Oregon v. Boulder Admin. Servs. Inc, 2016 WL 8222213 (W.D. Wash. Oct. 11, 2016) (Successful motion to enforce arbitration provision involving alleged underpayment claim. Subsequently resulted in an Arbitration trial in Portland, Oregon).

Humana Med. Plan, Inc. v. W. Heritage Ins. Co., 832 F.3d 1229 (11th Cir. 2016) (Court found that Medicare Advantage Organization had private right of action under Medicare Secondary Payer law) (Filed amicus brief on behalf of America’s Health Insurance Plans in support of Humana).

Kunz v. Liebovich Bros.,2016 WL 3093045 (N. D. Ill. May 31, 2016) (Achieved dismissal of ERISA 502(a)(1)(B) claim against claims administrator under FRCP 12(b)(6) based upon the rationale found in Larson v. United Healthcare Ins. Co.)

Dries v. Onebeacon Am. Ins. Co., 2016 WL 755655 (W.D. Wis. Feb. 25, 2016) (Successfully sought dismissal under Rule 12(b)(3) to enforce arbitration provision in occupational accident policy pursuant to the Federal Arbitration Act.)

Nat’l Union Fire Co. of Pittsburgh, PA. v. Toland, 164 F.Supp.3d 1330 (D. Wyo. 2016) (Subrogation suit filed on behalf of National Union after the parties settled around and successfully argued that Pennsylvania’s anti-subrogation law did not apply to motor vehicle accident despite contractual choice-of-law provision.)

Humana, Inc. v. Medtronic Sofamor Danek USA, Inc., 133 F. Supp. 3d 1068 (W.D. Tenn. 2015) (Court adopted Avandia finding both a private cause of action under the Medicare Secondary Payer Act and also a federal Right-to-Charge action.)

Collins v. Wellcare Healthcare Plans, Inc., 73 F.Supp.3d 653 (E.D. La. Dec. 16, 2014) (Court found private cause of action for Medicare Advantage Organization against enrollee within the Medicare Secondary Payer Act.)

Hechter v. Nationwide Fire Ins. Co., 2015 WL 1757542 (S.D. Ohio, Apr. 17, 2015) (Represented ERISA Plan administrator in successful removal of multi-defendant litigation under separate and independent claim removal. Successfully settled and extricated the administrator resulting in this decision on removal and remand.)

Brookwood Med. Ctr. v. Life Time Fitness, Inc., 2015 WL 10677459 (N.D. Ala. Jan. 16, 2015) (Representing ERISA Plan and third-party administrator against seven figure claim for medical expenses. Opinion granting F.R.C.P. 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss.)

Auto-Owners Ins. Co. v. Cover-All of Wisconsin, LLC, 2014 WL 2865160 (W.D. Wis., June 24, 2014) (Decision on motion for judgment on the pleadings) (representing judgment creditor in corporate successor liability action.)

Wausau Supply Co. v. Murphy, 2014 WL 2565555 (W.D. Wis. June 6, 2014) (decision on motion to dismiss and motion to remand); 2014 WL 4717068 (W.D. Wis. Sept. 22, 2014) (Decision on motion for summary judgment) (representing ERISA fiduciary in reimbursement action under § 502(a)(3).)

Decker v. Nw. Envtl. Def. Ctr., 133 S. Ct. 1326, 185 L. Ed. 2d 447 (2013) (Successfully represented the Ruffed Grouse Society as Amicus Curiae in favor of reversal arguing that natural runoff from logging roads do not require NPDES permits.)

Curran v. Germes, 2012 WL 12525505 (N.D. Tex. Jan. 11, 2012) (Represented OneBeacon Insurance and successfully argued for application of Pennsylvania law and defeated both the made-whole and common fund defenses.)

Driesen v. Iowa, Chicago & Eastern Railroad Corp., 2011 WL 573610 (N.D. Iowa, Feb. 14, 2011) (Successfully argued that Federal Railroad Safety Act preemption did not apply to bar plaintiff’s lack of warning claims.)

Kolbe & Kolbe Health & Welfare Benefit Plan v. Med. Coll. of Wis., Inc., 657 F.3d 496 (7th Cir. 2011) (Represented Wisconsin Association of Health Underwriters as Amicus Curiae in successfully reversing the district court on whether an ERISA Plan could assert state law breach of contract claims against providers.)

Bd. of Trustees of Rio Grande Employees Hosp. Ass’n v. Amundson, 2011 WL 93749 (D. Colo., Jan. 10, 2011) (Representation of self-funded employee benefit Plan seeking declaratory judgment action under ERISA § 502(a)(3) to enforce subrogation and workers’ comp exclusion to Plan’s recovery.)

Peninsula Gaming Co., LLC v. Rabalais, 2011 WL 938991 (N.D. Iowa, Mar. 16, 2011) (Achieved a complete recovery of self-funded ERISA Plan’s subrogation claim including an award of Attorney Fees, Costs, Pre- and Post-Judgment interest.)

Diocese of Superior v. Swan & Associates, Inc., 2010 WL 2178879 (Wis. Ct. App. 2010) (Successfully enforcing a Georgia choice-of-law provision in an insurance contract issued to a Minnesota insured based upon a Wisconsin claim.)

Sierra Club v. Kimbell, 623 F.3d 549 (8th Cir. 2010) (Represented Ruffed Grouse Society in a successful defense of the newly revised Forest Plan for the Superior National Forest in northern Minnesota under NEPA.)

Diamond Crystal Brands, Inc. v. Wallace, 531 F.Supp.2d 1366 (N.D. Ga. 2008), on recons., 563 F.Supp.2d 1349, 2008 WL 2608158 (N.D. Ga. 2008); and 2010 WL 1525536 (N.D. Ga.  2010) (Successfully represented an ERISA fiduciary in a reimbursement action to recover proceeds from proceeds wrongfully allocated to a wrongful death beneficiary in a state tort recovery.)

PJ Ventures, Inc. v. Forest County, 2010 WL 3119931 (Wis. Ct. App., August 10, 2010) (Represented Wisconsin County Forest Association in the defense of Forest County’s ownership of a snowmobile bridge pursuant to the Wisconsin Snowmobile Trail Aid program.)

Manzey v. Department of Veterans Affairs, 2010 WL 3522460 (W.D. Ark., Aug. 4, 2010) and 2010 WL 3522458 (Sept. 2, 2010) (Successfully represented an ERISA Plan fiduciary in pursuing reimbursement from a tort settlement and obtaining Rule 11 sanctions against the plaintiff’s attorney for asserting frivolous defenses to the subrogation claim.)

Sierra Club, et. al v. Kimbell, et al., 595 F.Supp.2d 1021 (D. Minn. 2009) (Represented Ruffed Grouse Society as amicus party defending the Forest Service in an environmental challenge to the revised land management plan for the Superior National Forest under NEPA and NFMA.)

American Family Mut. Ins. Co. v. David Golke, et al., 2009 WI 81, 319 Wis.2d 397, 768 N.W.2d 729 (Wis. 2009) (Court adopted the position of Amicus Curiae, NASP, and created new Wisconsin law for preservation of evidence and proper notice to potential defendants.)

Anderson v. Commerce Constr. Services, Inc., 531 F.3d 1190 (10th Cir. 2008) (Represented plaintiff in a construction accident raising issues of choice-of-law between Nebraska and Kansas.)

Representative Cases

Old Republic Life Insurance Company v. Michels Corp. and Minnkota Power Coop., 2:15-cv-00062-RRE-ARS (USDC, District of North Dakota) (Successful settlement of large loss occupational accident subrogation claim with severe crush injuries from unloading accident.)

Wisconsin v. Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians of Wisconsin, No. 14-792, 2015 WL 114128, (U.S. Apr. 20, 2015) (Filed Amicus Curiae brief in support of cert on behalf of the Wisconsin County Forests Association, Gogebic County, MI, and Pine County, MN regarding tribal night hunting of deer in Wisconsin.)

Banner Health d/b/a North Colorado Medical Center v. Sapp Brothers Petroleum, Inc., et al., 2014 CV 300091 (Nov. 26, 2014 Weld County, Colo.) (Achieved summary judgment for ERISA Plan sued by out-of-state provider based on out-of-network claims.)

Frank Multerer, et al. v. Department of Revenue, 13-CV-380 (Dodge County, WI 2013) (Constitutional challenge to agency rule governing taxation of wetlands resulting in new rulemaking); 2016 WL 1558508, (Dodge County, WI April 11, 2016) (decision on subsequent challenge to the new rule.)

National Union Fire Ins. v. EMO Trans, et al., 12-CV-1258 (Adams County, CO, 2013) (Large loss Carmack shipping loss.)

In re: PFG Forex Metals Legal Account, LLC, 13-00203-pp (E.D. WI Bankr. 2013) (Representation of account holdings in action to quash subpoena seeking disclosure of contributors.)

UW Hosp., et al. v. Self-Insured Services Co., et al., 12-cv-31 (W.D. Wis. 2012) (Successfully achieved a complete dismissal of claims administrator following filing of 12(b)(6) motion.)

Pagan, Kevin v. Brusco Tug & Barge, Inc., et al., 10-00036 ACK-KSC, (D. Haw. 2010) (special appearance before Magistrate Judge Chang in Longshore subrogation action involving egress from a barge.)

Markel American Ins. Co. v. Skipper Bud’s of Illinois, 08 L 1009 (Il. Cir. 19th Dist. 2009) (Case involved a large loss maritime subrogation claim at an Illinois marina. Issues included hold harmless and indemnification in winter storage agreement and application of maritime law. The case resulted in a favorable settlement.)

Szuta v. Kelbe Brothers Equipment, 2009 WL 6323758 (Wis. Cir. 2009) (Represented workers’ comp carrier in subrogation action against allegedly defective excavator resulting in $4,000,000 settlement.)

Alric K. Kuhaulua v. Grabber Pacific, Inc., et al., 08-1-0404-02 (Hawai’i 1st Cir. 2008) (Represented workers’ compensation carrier in subrogation claim arising from the construction accident involving a boom truck. Successfully arbitrated the case before Gerald Y. Sekiya in Honolulu).

Morton v. Rosen’s Diversified, Inc. Group Benefit Plan, 08-cv-4976 (D. Minn. 2008) (Plaintiff brought a state action seeking benefits under a self-funded ERISA Plan. Suit was removed to federal court. Case was defended based upon theory that employer was entitled to offset for subrogation due to a prior tort settlement. Case settled favorably in employer’s favor including a termination of future benefits related to the accident.)

Webcrafters, Inc. v. Martin, 08-cv-293 (W.D. Wis. 2008) (Case involved a reimbursement claim by a self-funded ERISA Plan against a member who failed to reimburse the Plan following a large state court settlement. Issues in the case included the Make-Whole and Common Fund Doctrines. Case resulted in a favorable settlement to the Plan.)

Cherleen Puha, et. al. v. Hawaiian Telecom, Inc., et al. 09-1-0862 (Hawai’i 2nd Cir. 2008) (Represented workers’ comp carrier in wrongful death action arising out of low-hanging telephone wires on Maui.)

North Carolina Teachers’ and State Employees’ Comprehensive Major Medical Plan v. Barber, 07CV77 (W.D. Pa. 2007) (Case involved choice-of-law questions relating to a state funded benefit plan that sought reimbursement from an employee’s dependent’s state tort action. Case resulted in a favorable settlement for the health Plan.)

Stechschulte v. Gencor Industries, Inc., 2007 WL 4941846; Stechschulte v. Gencor Industries, Inc., 2007 WL 4919459 (Wis. Cir. 2007) (Representing plaintiff and workers’ compensation carrier in product liability action involving an asphalt batch plant.)

Trustees of the Texas Carpenters & Millwrights Health & Welfare Fund v. Sayyed, 06-cv-246 (W.D. Ok. 2006) (Self-Funded union welfare plan sought equitable relief under ERISA for reimbursement for medical benefits from a California state tort settlement. Court granted temporary restraining order and case settled shortly thereafter.)

State Auto Insurance Company of Wisconsin vs. Mark A. Ubersox et al, 05-cv-85 (Lafayette County) (Jury trial involving insurance coverage for a property damage subrogation claim).

American Family Ins. Co. v. Michael Schneider and State Auto Ins. Co., 04-cv-93 (Wis. 2006.) (Successfully achieved a defense jury verdict against subrogation claim based on the affirmative defense of sudden unforeseen illness.)

Jeld-Wen Holding, Inc. v. Lane, et al., 06-C-387 (W.D. Wis. 2006) (Representing employer-fiduciary in ERISA reimbursement action against Plan member over alleged misallocation of settlement funds.)


Marquette University Law School, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 2004, J.D.

  • Honors: Dean’s List, Fall 2003.
  • Honors: Best Brief at Marquette Moot Court Competition.
  • Honors: President, Environmental Law Society

Published Works

ERISA and Health Insurance Subrogation In All 50 States, Contributing Editor, National Treatise, Juris Publishing, Inc., New York, Updated Annually. ISBN: 978-1-57823-275-8, 2012.

Workers’ Compensation Subrogation In All 50 States, Contributing Editor, National Treatise, Juris Publishing, Inc., New York, Updated Annually. ISBN: 978-1-57823-363-2, 2012.

Fundamentals of Insurance Coverage In All 50 States (Fourth Edition), Contributing Editor, National Treatise, Juris Publishing, Inc., New York, Updated Annually. ISBN: 978-1-57823-338-0, 2013.

Forest Resources: The Year In Review, Author and Editor, American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy (2009-2013).

American Family Ins. v. Golke Brothers: NASP To Appear As Amicus Curiae Before The Wisconsin Supreme Court in Spoliation Case, Article published in NASP Subrogator, Winter, 2009.

Where’s the Luggage?, Article published in NASP Subrogator, Winter, 2005.

Speaking Engagements

Preparing for Doomsday: What to Expect and How to Prepare Before the Medicare Trust Fund is Exhausted  – October 28, 2019, seminar presented at 2019 Annual National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Conference in Washington, D.C.

Navigating Medicare Advantage Liens and Double Damages: A Primer and Legal Update – April 25, 2019, Seminar presented to  Wisconsin Bar in Madison, WI.

Medicare Advantage Year In Review, November 13, 2018, Seminar presented at 2018 National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Conference in Orlando, Florida.

U.S. Product Liability Law and Developments, November 24, 2017, seminar presented at 2017 USA Product Liability Insurance Conference in Taipei, Taiwan.

Medicare Advantage Year In Review, November 7, 2017, Seminar presented at 2017 Annual National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Conference in Austin, Texas.

The Latest Medicare Advantage Decision: Its Significance and Loopholes Analyzed, January 27, 2017, webinar presented for The Knowledge Group.

Medicare Advantage: Year In Review, October 24, 2016, panel presentation at 2016 National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Annual Conference in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

ERISA Subrogation and Reimbursement, May 12, 2016, seminar presented at Association of Railroad Medical Service Executives (ARMSE) Conference in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

License To Steal: Breaking Down The Supreme Court’s Decision In Montanile, January 23, 2016, MWL webinar presented to the public.

Medicare Advantage: Recent Case Law and What It Means for Practitioners, November 9, 2015, seminar presented at 2015 National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Conference in Reno, Nevada.

Medicare Advantage Update: Enforcing Your Rights Under The Medicare Secondary Payer Act, February 24, 2015, MWL webinar presented to the public.

2014: Year In Review, November 11, 2014, seminar presented at 2014 National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Conference in Orlando, Florida.

ERISA Health Subrogation 2012 Updates, August 9, 2012, MWL webinar presented to the public.

2012 Health Subrogation Updates, July 12, 2012, seminar presented at National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Texas Chapter Meeting.

Avoiding and Understanding The Made Whole and Common Fund Doctrine, September 20, 2011, MWL webinar presented to the public.

Technology and Property Subrogation, June 29, 2011, webinar on Spoliation Issues in Wisconsin presented for National Association of Subrogation Professional’s (NASP) Wisconsin Chapter.

A Review of Longaberger v. Kolt and Other Potential ERISA Game-Changing Cases, February 16, 2011, webinar presented to the public.

Longaberger v. Kolt And ERISA Game Changers, November 10, 2010, seminar presented at 2010 Annual National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Conference in Grapevine, Texas.

Subrogating Occupational Accident Plans, June 1, 2010, MWL webinar presented to the public.

ERISA and The Wrongful Death Lawsuit, November 3, 2009, seminar presented at the 2009 National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Annual Conference in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Healthcare Subrogation 101: Recognizing Subrogation, June 3, 2009, seminar presented at the 2009 Association of Railroad Medical Service Executives (ARMSE) Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Wisconsin Spoliation Law Update, May 5, 2009, seminar presented to National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP) Regional Meeting in West Bend, Wisconsin.

Health Subrogation Best Practices in the Wake of the Shank Case, April 24, 2009, seminar presented at 2009 NOPLG Conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The Economic Loss Doctrine: The Monster in the Property Subrogation Closet, April 29-30, 2008, seminar presented to 5th Annual National Property Strategies ExecuSummit in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

The Intersection of Healthcare Subrogation and Bankruptcy: What Happens When Your Insured Files for Bankrupty? (Health), November 5, 2007, seminar presented at 2007 National Association of Subrogation Professional (NASP) Annual Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Introduction To Workers’ Compensation Subrogation, November 13, 2006, seminar presented at 2006 National Association of Subrogation Professional (NASP) Annual Conference in Orlando, Florida.

The ABC’s of Health Subrogation, November 13, 2006, seminar presented at 2006 National Association of Subrogation Professional (NASP) Annual Conference in Orlando, Florida.

Professional Associations & Memberships

  • Wisconsin Bar Association
  • National Association of Subrogation Professionals (NASP)
  • Wisconsin Chinese Chamber of Commerce 威州华人商会
  • Property and Liability Loss Research Bureau (PLRB)
  • Claims Litigation Management (CLM)

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