Ethan Lange represents individuals and businesses in a wide variety of high-stakes cases, including business disputes, nationwide class actions, multidistrict litigation, antitrust lawsuits, patent infringement matters, personal injury cases, civil rights cases and will contests. He has served clients from all walks of life, ranging from Fortune 500 companies to prisoners; regardless of the size of the case or the means of his clients, Ethan works tirelessly to secure the most favorable outcome possible.
Ethan’s practice is concentrated in litigation, arbitration and other trial work that includes first-chair federal and state jury trial experience. In addition to his trial exposure, he has handled numerous hearings, depositions, mediations and motions.
In one recent matter, Ethan served on the trial team in Karr v. Kansas City Life Insurance Co., a class action lawsuit in the 16th Circuit Court of Jackson County, Missouri that alleged the insurance company overcharged more than eight thousand Missouri policyholders. After two hours of deliberations, a unanimous jury awarded $28.4 million in favor of Ethan’s clients, which was the full amount requested.
In another case, Ethan represented a class of State Farm Life Insurance policyholders. That case, Vogt v. State Farm Life Insurance Co., was a class-action lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri that alleged the insurance company overcharged its policyholders for 23 years. The case resulted in a verdict of over $34 Million after just two hours of jury deliberations. The verdict has since been affirmed on appeal.
Outside of jury trials, Ethan has successfully briefed numerous motions for summary judgment, motions to dismiss, and motions for class certification, which have often led to substantial settlements for his clients.
Ethan earned his J.D., magna cum laude, from Baylor Law School graduating in the Top 5 in his class, where he was the Editor-in-Chief of the Baylor Law Review. He was the Number One Speaker in the Dawson & Sodd Moot Court Tournament and was selected for membership in the Order of the Barristers.
Ethan began his legal career in the Dallas office of a national trial boutique, Diamond McCarthy, where he was introduced to high-stakes complex litigation.
He then served as a law clerk for Judge Ed Kinkeade of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas. During his clerkship, Ethan was involved in hundreds of different lawsuits, including civil and criminal trials. He credits this trial exposure with affirming his desire to pursue justice for his clients in the courtroom.
Following his clerkship, Ethan practiced at Locke Lord, one of the largest law firms in the country, where he represented clients in jury and bench trials in federal and state courts, as well as arbitration and mediation proceedings.
He joined Stueve Siegel Hanson in 2015. Ethan quickly became an integral part of the team and hasn’t stopped racing across the country to depose witnesses, appear before courts, try cases, mediate disputes, and speak about his expertise.
Ethan is a founding board member for the National Board of Complex Litigation Lawyers, a division of the National Board of Trial Advocacy, where he will work with federal and state judges and nationally recognized lawyers to shape the future of complex litigation. The Board has created a certification that shows attorneys have established credibility and experience in complex litigation.
Ethan is a board member of the Federal Bar Association Chapter for the Districts of Kansas and Western Missouri. He currently serves as president. Ethan is also a board member and the secretary/treasurer of the Lawyers Association of Kansas City.
When he isn’t practicing law, Ethan devotes his time to his wife and four children. Ethan serves in a leadership capacity at his local church and volunteers in the children's ministry. Ethan is also pursuing his passion for Kansas City’s homeless population as well as fostering children in the future.
Trial and Litigation Experience
For more than a dozen years, Ethan has successfully represented a variety of clients in complex civil lawsuits at both the trial court and appellate levels in courts across the country. He has defended and/or prosecuted claims in the areas of contract, antitrust, business litigation, probate, patent infringement, environmental contamination, civil rights, personal injury, and class actions.
The following cases are illustrative examples of Ethan's experience:
Example of a Current Case
Ethan represents numerous policyholders in federal and state courts across the country against a variety of life insurance companies. For example, in Karr v. Kansas City Life Insurance Company (Breach of Contract/Class Action), Ethan sued Kansas City Life on behalf of a policy owner claiming Kansas City Life was impermissibly draining his life insurance account with improper deductions. The case went to trial and the jury returned a verdict in favor of Ethan’s client and the class of Missouri Kansas City Life policyholders in the amount of $28,362,830.96.
In Rogowski v. State Farm Life Insurance Company (Breach of Contract/Class Action), Ethan represented policy owners who alleged that State Farm Life Insurance Company was breaching their life insurance policies by overcharging them for the cost of insurance. After several years of litigation across the country in ten different jurisdictions, the parties reached an agreement to settle the litigation for $325,000,000.
Examples of Past Cases
In Vogt v. State Farm Life Insurance Company (Breach of Contract/Class Action), Ethan sued State Farm on behalf of a policy owner who asserted that State Farm was taking improper deductions from his life insurance policy account. The case went to trial and the jury returned a verdict in favor of Ethan’s client and the class of Missouri State Farm policyholders in the amount of $34,333,495.81.
In Spegele v. USAA Life Insurance Company (Breach of Contract/Class Action), Ethan represented a policy owner who alleged that USAA Life Insurance Company was breaching his life insurance policy by overcharging him for the cost of insurance. After obtaining certification of a nationwide class of policyholders, the parties settled the lawsuit for $90,000,000.
In Larson v. John Hancock Life Insurance Company (U.S.A.) (Breach of Contract/Class Action), Ethan represented a policyholder who bought a policy from John Hancock Life Insurance Company and claimed John Hancock breached the life insurance policy by deducting funds from the policyholder’s account that were not authorized by the policy. In January 2018, the parties settled the lawsuit for $59,750,000.
In November 2017, Ethan extensively negotiated and eventually secured a confidential settlement in a business litigation matter between two corporate parties relating to a breach of contract.
In January 2015, in Sayas v. Taherzadeh et al., Civil Action No. 1:13-cv-00215 (U.S. District Court Southern District of Texas), a confidential settlement was reached after the Southern District of Texas agreed with Ethan’s legal position regarding federal jurisdiction. In that regard, Ethan successfully argued to the Court that jurisdiction was proper, even though there were numerous procedural and logistical hurdles for the Court to retain jurisdiction.
In November 2014, Ethan secured a $14,000 jury verdict and judgment, including actual and punitive damages, against a Dallas County Sherriff’s Department officer for assaulting Ethan’s client, who was incarcerated in a Dallas County jail at the time of the assault. The result was upheld by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. In addition to the trial victory, Ethan was awarded his costs and attorney fees. Ethan’s client was thrilled about the result considering the near insurmountable hurdles for a felony inmate to prevail against a jail officer.
In September 2014, in R N D Productions, Inc. v. Andrew Seeley and Walt Disney Company, Civil Action No. 4:13-CV-001751 (U.S. District Court Southern District of Texas), after Ethan orally argued the motion to dismiss, he drafted to the judge, he secured a favorable dismissal for his client, The Walt Disney Company. Ethan’s client was very pleased with the result because it did not want to litigate the copyright and trademark lawsuit in Houston, Texas.
In November 2013, Ethan successfully defended his client against claims of fraud and forgery. Ethan’s diligence and careful review uncovered favorable facts that ultimately led to the Northern District of Texas agreeing with Ethan’s position in a motion for summary judgment and dismissing the lawsuit against his client. Peterson v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., Civil Action No. 4:11-cv-00404 (U.S. District Court Northern District of Texas).
In Schroeder v. Wildenthal et al., 515 Fed. Appx. 294, 2013 WL 703646 (5th Cir. Feb. 26, 2013), the plaintiff, a wealthy heir to his mother’s vast estate, alleged the Dallas Museum of Art (Ethan’s client) deprived him of an inheritance of nearly $400 Million of artwork and a $40 Million residence in France. Despite the complexities of the case and the applicability of French law, Ethan argued in a motion to dismiss that the plaintiff’s case should be dismissed. The Northern District of Texas agreed with Ethan’s position and found in favor of his client. In February 2013, after oral argument, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the decision of the Northern District of Texas in favor of Ethan’s client. Ultimately, the Dallas Museum of Art was pleased to retain the beautiful artwork. The district court’s written decision can be found at Schroeder v. Wildenthal, 2011 WL 6029727 (N.D. Tex. Nov. 30, 2011).
In addition to the cases listed above, Ethan has secured numerous positive results for his clients, including favorable resolutions and settlements.
Co-Author, Debating Third-Party Policy Deadlines: Why Texas Should Equitably Toll an Insured’s Claim for Breach of the Duty to Defend, 61 BAYLOR L. REV. 610 (2009)
Panelist at the 18th Annual Complex Litigation Symposium in New Orleans
Moderator of Federal Bar Association Civil Rights CLE class action panel
Moderator of CLE presentation by Tenth Circuit Judge Robert E. Bacharach about his new book: Legal Writing: A Judge's Perspective on the Science and Rhetoric of the Written Word
Honors & Awards
Honors & Recognitions
Selected to “Rising Stars” by Super Lawyers (2014-2018, 2020-2022), which is reserved for no more than 2.5 percent of eligible lawyers, in Texas and Missouri & Kansas
Missouri Lawyers Media No. 4 Top Plaintiffs’ Verdict of 2022 for $28.36 million awarded in Karr v. Kansas City Life Insurance Company
Missouri Lawyers Media No. 4 Top Plaintiffs’ Verdict of 2018 for $34.3 million awarded in Vogt v. State Farm Life Insurance Co.
Baylor Law School
J.D., magna cum laude, 2008
- Top 5 in Graduating Class
- Honors: Number One Speaker in the Dawson & Sodd Moot Court Tournament
- Honors: Order of the Barristers
- Baylor Law Review, Editor-in-Chief
University of Missouri
B.A., History, 2005
- U.S. Court of Appeals, 1st Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals, 5th Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals, 8th Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals, 9th Circuit
- U.S. District Court Western District of Missouri
- U.S. District Court District of Kansas
- U.S. District Court Northern District of Texas
- U.S. District Court Eastern District of Texas
- U.S. District Court Southern District of Texas
- U.S. District Court Western District of Texas
- U.S. District Court District of Colorado