Michael E. Ricketts, Partner, Board of Directors
  • A Seattle native, Mike Ricketts received his undergraduate degree from Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington, and his juris doctor from the University of Washington School of Law. He focuses his practice on civil trial work including property and casualty insurance disputes and other commercial matters, and asbestos and other personal injury and product liability litigation.

    He has considerable experience with fire claims and property losses involving product failure, electrical malfunction, or construction issues. He also devotes a substantial portion of his practice to appeals.

    Mike is the father of three adult children and enjoys reading Pacific Northwest and American history. 

  • Education

    • J.D., University of Washington School of Law, 1979
    • B.A., Economics, Whitman College, 1976

    Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice

    • Washington State Courts
    • Oregon State Courts
    • U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington
    • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
    • Pro hac vice admissions, resulting in appearances in particular cases in courts in the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, and Nevada

    Professional & Bar Association Memberships

    • American Bar Association

      • Litigation section
      • Torts and Insurance Practice section
      • Property Insurance Subcommittee
    • Washington State Bar Association

      • Litigation Section
    • King County Bar Association

      • Officer (Treasurer) and Director, 2019 - Present 
      • Judicial Evaluation Committee (Chair 2007-2008)
      • Judiciary & the Courts Committee
    • The Defense Research Institute

    • American Board of Trial Advocates

    • Federal Bar Association of the Western District of Washington

    • Washington Defense Trial Lawyers Association

    Professional History

    • Joined firm 2008
    • Kingman, Peabody, Fitzharris & Ringer, P.S., 1986-2007
    • Burns & Ricketts, P.S., 1982-1986
    • Foulds, Felker, Johnson & McHugh, P.S., 1979-1982
    • Member, GTH Board of Directors, 2013 - present

    Honors & Awards

    • Selected for the Washington Super Lawyers lists, 2015 - present
    • Rated AV-Pre-eminent by Martindale Hubbell
  • Representative Matters

    • When disaster struck at a public utility district’s hydro-electric generation facility, the district’s London-based Difference in Conditions insurers and their national counsel turned to us for help with the coverage, damage, and priority issues that arose when claims for the loss were made under both DIC coverage and all-risk property insurance coverage. We helped shepherd the matter through declaratory judgment litigation in federal court in the Western District of Washington, a multi-week formal appraisal hearing, and an appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, resulting in a complete vindication of our clients’ coverage positions.

    • A national industrial insurer provided umbrella liability coverage to a local solvents processor who was liable for pollution claims under the Model Toxic Controls Act. Near the end of a long and complicated course of claims, litigation, remediation, and other activity, the umbrella insurer was faced with competing claimants to its near-exhausted coverage limits, as well as allegations of extra-contractual liability from several competing insureds and purported insureds. The umbrella insurer turned to us for assistance, which took the form of immediately filing an interpleader and declaratory judgment action in federal court to resolve the competing claims to coverage and to head off further allegations of wrongdoing. With that in place, we then were able to resolve the remaining claims in a comprehensive mediation ordered by the court.

    • An employee of a local construction company drove a company truck to various job sites, and also to and from home each day. The employee took the truck to his church’s camp one summer, and while there allowed another person at camp to drive the truck. When that driver hit a young boy, the family of the boy, the personal insurer of the driver, and the personal insurer of the employee all looked to our client, the liability insurer of the construction company that owned the truck, to provide primary coverage. We were able to obtain a ruling that, regardless of the employee having granted permission to the driver, our client owed no coverage under the terms of its policy because its insured, the construction company itself, had not expressly or impliedly given permission to the driver to drive the truck.

    • Mike Ricketts also devotes a substantial portion of his practice to appeals. Representative appellate cases in which he was involved include the following decisions: Braaten v. Saberhagen Holdings, et al., 165 Wn.2d 373, 198 P.3d 493. Ambach v. French, 141 Wn. App. 782; 173 P.3d 941. Wilcox v. Lexington Eye Institute, 130 Wh. App. 234, 122 P.3d 729. Olympic Pipe Line Co. v. Pacific Employers Ins. Co., 128 Wn.App. 1003, 2005 WL 1406125. Spokane County v. Specialty Auto and Truck Painting, Inc., 153 Wn.2d 238, 103 P.3d 792. Olympic Pipe Line Co. v. Somerset Marine, Inc., 124 Wn. App. 1004. Puget Sound Energy, Inc. v. Alba General Ins. Co., 149 Wn.2d 135, 68 P.3d 1061. Port of Seattle v. Lexington Ins. Co., 111 Wn. App. 901, 48 P.3d 334. M. A. Mortenson Co., Inc. v. Timberline Software Corp., 140 Wn.2d 568, 998 P.2d 305, 41 UCC Rep. Serv.2d 357. Aluminum Co. of America v. Aetna Casualty & Surety Co., 140 Wn.2d 517, 998 P.2d 856. Hillhaven Properties, Ltd. v. Sellen Constr. Co., Inc., 133 Wn.2d 751, 948 P.2d 796. Sunbreaker Condominium Assoc. v. Travelers Ins. Co., 79 Wn. App. 368, 901 P.2d 1079.

  • Tacoma Arches at the History Museum
  • Pioneer Square
  • Fireboats on the Seattle Waterfront
  • Duwamish Waterway and brown field cleanup
  • Reflection pond by the Tacoma Glass Museum
Gordon Thomas Honeywell LLP


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Tacoma, WA 98402

Telephone: 253.620.6500
Fax: 253.620.6565


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600 University St, #2100
Seattle, WA 98101

Telephone: 206.676.7500
Fax: 206.676.7575

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1201 Pacific Ave, #2100, Tacoma, WA 98402
Telephone: 253.620.6500  Fax: 253.620.6565


One Union Square, 600 University St, #2100, Seattle, WA 98101
Telephone: 206.676.7500  Fax: 206.676.7575