W. Richard "Rick" Braun III

W. Richard "Rick" Braun III

Hawkins Parnell & Young, LLP

Recognized since 2018

Detroit, Michigan

Practice Areas

Litigation - Environmental

Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants

Product Liability Litigation - Defendants

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Rick has practiced nationally in asbestos litigation throughout his career. A shareholder in the Asbestos and Toxic Tort practice group, Rick defends premises owners, non-manufacturing suppliers, and manufacturers of industrial equipment, friction products, and electrical components. He is also experienced in product liability, including the defense of manufacturers of tires, automotive components, lawnmowers, forestry equipment, skid-steer loaders, and pharmaceuticals.

Rick is responsible for the development of expert witnesses in various disciplines including industrial hygiene, medical causation, and scientific areas. He also coordinates discovery for all jurisdictions, and trains local counsel in various jurisdictions on technical aspects of clients’ product lines, legal defenses, and strategies for effective depositions. He defends clients in Michigan through discovery, negotiation, and trial.

Rick attended the Harvard Negotiation Institute at Harvard Law School, a university consortium dedicated to developing the theory and practice of negotiation and dispute resolution. The coursework included negotiation case studies and mock negotiations. This work provided a theoretical framework for legal and business negotiation. It also addressed practical challenges, like complex negotiations with multiple parties and difficult people and behaviors.

Rick is a registered lobbyist agent with the State of Michigan. He has advocated for clients at the Michigan Legislature and engaged in pro bono lobbying activities at the state and federal levels.

Contact & Links


  • 1533 Winder Street
    Detroit, MI 48207

Bar Admissions

  • Michigan, State Bar of Michigan
  • United States, Admitted Pro Hac Vice in New York, Ohio, California, Delaware, Florida, Illinois, Missouri


  • Defense Research Institute (DRI) - Asbestos Medicine Conference (Marketing Committee; DRI For Life Committee Liaison); Toxic Tort and Environmental Law Committee (Asbestos Subcommittee; Climate Change Subcommittee)
  • Oakland County Bar Association - Chair, Energy, Sustainability, and Environmental Law Committee, 2016-2017; Vice-Chair, Energy, Sustainability, and Environmental Law Committee, 2015-2016
  • State Bar of Michigan - Special Committee on Civil Discovery Court Rules; Scope and Course Discovery Subcommittee
  • American Lung Association of Midland States - Board of Directors, July 1, 2015 through July 1, 2018
  • Rochester Hills Brownfield Redevelopment Authority - Member, Elected to three year term effective Nov. 2016)
  • Claims Management Alliance (CLM) - Member

Court Admissions

  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota

Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America® 2023 for work in:

  • Product Liability Litigation - Defendants
  • Litigation - Environmental
  • Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions - Defendants


  • Best Lawyers of America®, Product Liability Litigation – Defendants (2018)
  • 2016 OCBA Frances R. Avadenka Memorial Award Winner
  • Listed “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers® Magazine (2012-2014)
  • Listed Top Lawyer, Product Liability, DBusiness® (2012-2013)
  • Martindale-Hubbell® AV Preeminent Rated (5.0 out of 5.0 in Toxic Torts)

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