Ian A. Stewart Partner

     

Contact

   

Ian Stewart is the regional managing partner of Wilson Elser’s Los Angeles office. He has defended complex litigation in state and federal courts for 25 years with a diverse practice that includes product and professional liability, cannabis law, data privacy and cybersecurity, complex general casualty and intellectual property litigation. 

Ian has achieved a national reputation as a distinguished cannabis attorney and has been named to the prestigious Chambers USA 2020 and 2021 guides in Cannabis Law. As co-chair of the firm’s national Cannabis Law Practice, Ian leads a national multidisciplinary team of lawyers who serve all aspects of the cannabis and hemp industries, as well as financial institutions and insurance companies that service those industries.

Ian also is co-chair of the national Cybersecurity & Data Privacy Practice. He regularly defends data privacy class-action litigation and matters involving invasion of privacy, right of publicity and statutory consumer claims that impact privacy rights.

Areas of Focus

Complex Tort & General Casualty, Transportation and Product Liability
Ian has broad experience defending product liability matters involving products manufactured in the United States and abroad. These include recreational vehicles, industrial machinery, drugs and medical devices, nutritional supplements, cannabis products, sporting goods and consumer products. Ian regularly defends consumer class actions that involve product liability, warranty and unfair competition issues. He is founder and chair emeritus of the Claims and Litigation Management Alliance’s Product Liability Committee. 

Ian’s general casualty practice focuses on the defense of catastrophic claims and litigation that pertain to security, premises, and transportation risks, including for national retailers, restaurant chains, hotels and fleet owners. He also regularly defends maritime/marine claims and matters involving sports and school-related risks. 

Cannabis & Hemp Law
As co-chair of the firm’s Cannabis Law Practice, Ian leads a national multidisciplinary team of lawyers who serve all aspects of the cannabis and hemp industries, as well as financial institutions and insurance companies that service those industries. Ian works with licensed cannabis operators throughout the country to comply with their obligations under the law and to develop risk management best practices. He advises Fortune 500 companies on risk management involving hemp-derived cannabinoids and the interplay with U.S. food and drug laws. Ian assists insurance companies on cannabis-related underwriting practices and the development of new policy forms. He also works with financial institutions and professional services firms on best practices for operating in a challenging regulatory environment. 

Ian has been named to the prestigious Chambers USA 2020 and 2021 guides in Cannabis Law. He is a member of the Advisory Board of the International Cannabis Bar Association and has been named to the Policy Council of the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA). Ian sits on the Executive Committee of the Los Angeles County Bar Association’s Cannabis Section and is chair emeritus of NCIA’s Risk Management and Insurance Committee. He is one of MG Magazine’s “30 Powerful Cannabis Attorneys You Should Know,” and is named in the Cannabis Reports list of “10 Powerful Marijuana Lawyers in California.” Ian received a 2019 Readers’ Choice Award by JD Supra for his publication on cannabis consumer class actions, and was selected by National Law Review as “Go-To Thought Leader” in 2018 and 2021 for his reporting on cannabis law.

Cybersecurity & Data Privacy
Ian is co-chair of the national Cybersecurity & Data Privacy Practice and a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US). He defends data privacy class-action litigation and litigated matters involving invasion of privacy, right of publicity and statutory consumer claims that impact privacy rights. Ian has responded to numerous data breaches for companies including retailers, medical providers and professional firms. Ian counsels clients on evolving privacy threats, including the collection, use, retention and destruction of data.

Professional Liability
In the professional liability area, Ian focuses on directors and officers (D&O) liability, as well as the defense of architects/engineers, agents/brokers and miscellaneous specialty risks. He performs contract reviews for design professionals and has been designated as the point of contact by several insurance companies for their design contract review programs.

Intellectual Property
Ian’s intellectual property practice focuses on litigation involving trademark, trade dress and copyright infringement claims, trade libel, trade secret, unfair competition claims, internet domain disputes and license agreements.