Celebrating 125 Years

Robert F. Ruckman


Robert F. Ruckman is a partner in the litigation section of Jackson Walker in Dallas and is head of the aviation practice group for the firm. His practice primarily involves representation of airlines, aircraft or aircraft component part manufacturers and aviation insurers or individuals involved in aviation or related businesses. He has served as lead counsel in complex multidistrict air carrier and product liability litigation.

Mr. Ruckman has extensive trial experience, with numerous jury and non-jury trials in state and federal courts, as well as appeals in both state and federal courts. He is Board Certified in Civil Trial Law and Personal Injury Trial Law, and he holds a private pilot certificate.

More about Robert F. Ruckman: Experience | Involvement | Recognition | Speeches / Publications | News

Representative Matters

  • Serving as lead counsel for product defendant in litigation arising out of crash of Air France Flight 447

  • Served as lead counsel for defendant airline in federal multi-district litigation and state court cases arising from crash of Flight 5966 near Kirksville, Missouri

  • Obtained defense verdict for product manufacturer in case involving foreign accident

  • Defended air show sponsor in jury trial arising from collision of Warbird aircraft during air show and obtained favorable verdict

  • Defended bank in wrongful death case arising out of aircraft accident and obtained a favorable jury verdict in Hidalgo County, Texas

  • Obtained defense verdict for airline in jury trial arising from major air carrier accident in San Juan, Puerto Rico

  • Obtained favorable jury verdict in suit for negligent pre-purchase inspection of a business aircraft

  • Served as lead counsel in 19 wrongful death suits filed in state court arising out of a commuter airline accident in Germany, which were successfully removed to bankruptcy court and ultimately dismissed for forum non conveniens by the federal district court, and affirmed by the Fifth Circuit

  • Served as lead counsel in jury trial involving 16 death and injury cases arising out of crash of a military helicopter accident; case settled during jury trial

  • Successfully defended airline in multiple lawsuits brought by family of deceased airline pilot alleging airline's failure to advise of significant cardiac risk uncovered during pre-employment examination

  • Represented airframe manufacturer in commercial dispute involving the acquisition of customized aircraft for U.S. Government

  • Successfully established government contractor defense in multiple military product cases

  • Represented major government contractor in commercial dispute with subcontractor for U.S. military program

More about Robert F. Ruckman: Biography | Involvement | Recognition | Speeches / Publications | News

Organization Membership

Mr. Ruckman is a member of the International Association of Defense Counsel, the Texas Association of Defense Counsel, the Defense Research Institute, and the American Bar Association Forum Committee on Air and Space Law. He is a member of the Aviation and Space Law Committee and the Tort and Insurance Practice Section of the American Bar Association; the Lawyer-Pilot's Bar Association; and a Fellow of the Texas and Dallas Bar Associations and the College of the State Bar of Texas. He is also a Sustaining Life Fellow of the Texas Bar Foundation.

Military Service
Captain, United States Army Reserve, honorable discharge 1978

More about Robert F. Ruckman: Biography | Experience | Recognition | Speeches / Publications | News

Peer Recognition

Mr. Ruckman is ranked as a top Aviation Litigation attorney in the 2013-2014 editions of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business directory. Mr. Ruckman has been named a "Super Lawyer" by Thomson Reuters (2003-2005, 2007-2014) and is listed in The Best Lawyers in America under Commercial Litigation, Legal Malpractice Law, Transportation Law and Personal Injury Litigation. He is also included in the International Who's Who of Aviation Lawyers, the Aviation chapter of Who's Who Legal: Texas and in the Guide to the World's Leading Aviation Lawyers. He was named as a "Best in Civil Litigation Defense" attorney by Super Lawyers: Corporate Counsel Edition.

More about Robert F. Ruckman: Biography | Experience | Involvement | Speeches / Publications | News

Speeches / Publications

Mr. Ruckman is the presenter or author of:

  • Panel moderator, Mock Trials, A Global View: What’s New in Aviation and Space Law – Litigation in the U.S. and Abroad, ABA Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section Aviation & Space Law Committee, October 24, 2014
  • "Aviation Trends and Strategies," Inside Minds: Strategies for Transportation Litigation and Dispute Resolution, December, 2013
  • Panel moderator, Mock Settlement Negotiation, Trial Tactics and Skills for the Aviation Practitioner, ABA Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section Aviation & Space Law Committee, October 18-19, 2012
  • ER in the Skies: In-Flight Medical Emergencies; 33rd Annual SMU Air Law Symposium; Dallas, Texas; February 23-25, 1999
  • In-Flight Medical Emergencies: An Update on the Aviation Medical Assistance At of 1998; Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University's 13th Annual Aviation Law/Insurance Symposium; Daytona Beach, Florida; January 17-18, 2000
  • ER in the Skies: In-Flight Medical Emergencies; Vol. 65 Journal of Air Law and Commerce; Winter 1999
  • Use of Automated External Defibrillators by a U.S. Airline; New England Journal of Medicine; October 26, 2000 (contributed legal content for the article)
  • Cardiac Arrest at 30,000 Feet, Journal of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia, June 2006, Vol. 20 No. 3 (Case conference / Co-author of section pertaining to liability for responding to in-flight emergencies)

Links to Publications

More about Robert F. Ruckman: Biography | Experience | Involvement | Recognition | News

  • Robert F. Ruckman
Dallas Office
T: 214.953.6024
F: 214.661.6687

Civil Trial & Personal Injury Trial
  • 2013 Chambers
Practice Areas

B.A. Economics, cum laude, Trinity University (TX)

J.D., Vanderbilt University Law School
Bar Admissions

  • 1970, Texas
Court Admissions

  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • United States District Courts for the Southern, Western, Eastern, and Northern Districts of Texas
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