Back to People

Aaron E. Schwartz

Counsel

“We are what we pretend to be, so we must be careful about what we pretend to be.” – Kurt Vonnegut

Practice Groups

Areas of Concentration

  • Litigation
  • Appellate Practice
  • Employment Law
  • Insurance Coverage and Excess Litigation

Experience at Work

Aaron, a seasoned litigator, tirelessly works for each of his clients on a broad scope of matters ranging from simple wage disputes to complex class actions involving hundreds of millions of dollars. He represents individuals and companies on matters including employment litigation and discrimination, commercial disputes, insurance coverage, sexual abuse, and complex mass torts. Aaron practices in the trial courts of Missouri, Illinois, and Kansas and in United States District Courts across the country.

Whether representing an individual claimant or a large corporate defendant, Aaron makes it his first priority to understand his clients’ unique concerns and opportunities. As counselor, he helps identify risks and rights and resolve potential disputes without litigation when possible. When litigation is necessary, Aaron fashions pragmatic and aggressive strategies to ensure his clients’ rights are protected. No matter the type of case or client, he draws on his experience to chart common sense, efficient, and effective solutions for those he represents.

After graduating from the University of Missouri School of Law, Aaron served as law clerk to Judge Victor Howard of the Missouri Court of Appeals. He then developed a diverse practice as a partner at a mid-sized Kansas City area law firm. He has successfully argued before the Missouri Court of Appeals and the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.

In the Community

Aaron is a volunteer election day poll watcher.  When not representing his clients or spending time with his family, you can often find him fishing mid-Missouri’s trout streams.

Awards & Recognitions

Awards

  • Super Lawyers® | Missouri and Kansas Rising Stars List, Rising Star. (2012 – Present)
  • The Best Lawyers in America® | Commercial Litigation, St. Louis (2021 – Present)

Significant Experience

Representations

  • Successfully represented both employers and employees in claims involving race, sex, disability, and national origin discrimination, sexual harassment, Missouri’s service letter law, the FLSA, non-competition agreements, and the False Claims Act.
  • Obtained summary judgment for clients in an employment action brought against the Ray County Board of Services and three of its employees and successfully defended the judgment on appeal. (Guido v. Ray County Bd. of Services)
  • Obtained several settlements very favorable to employer-clients in claims involving workers compensation retaliation.
  • Obtained a one-million-dollar settlement against a for-profit college in a claim brought under the False Claims Act.
  • Litigated high profile claims of fiduciary breach under ERISA involving multi-billion-dollar employee benefit plans.
  • Obtained a $54,000,000 judgment for sexual abuse and successfully represented client in the related insurance bad faith litigation.
  • Prevailed in summary judgment proceedings after personally deposing ten adverse fact witnesses and three adverse retained experts in claim involving multi-billion-dollar 401(k) plan. Litigation ultimately settled in clients’ favor for $23.65 million. (Bell et al. v. ATH Holding Company, LLC et al.)

Published Decisions

  • Won and defended summary judgment granted to client security contractor in claim of racial discrimination. [Combs v. Cordish, 862 F.3d 671 (8th Cir. 2017)]
  • Won and defended summary judgment for client high school football coach on claims of personal injury brought by player; summary judgment affirmed on appeal. [Haley v. Bennett, 489 S.W.3d 288 (Mo. App. W.D. 2016)]
  • Obtained reversal of summary judgment entered against insured client on issue of coverage; judgment ultimately entered in favor of insured client after remand. [Sentry v. Knox, 360 S.W. 3d 846 (Mo. App. W.D. 2011)]

Knowledge & Insights

Publications

  • “The Broad Reach of “Control” (A Litigant’s Duty to Extract Discovery from Third Parties).” Journal of the Missouri Bar. Vol. 73. (2017)
  • “Taxing Costs (Theory and Practice).” Journal of the Missouri Bar. Vol. 68. (2012)
  • “Comment, Dusting off the Blaine Amendment: Two Challenges to Missouri’s Anti-Establishment Tradition.” Missouri Law Review. Vol. 73. (2008)
  • “Note, Honk to Remove this Demonstration: The Eighth Circuit Adopts a Heckler’s Veto.” Missouri Law Review. Vol. 70. (2005)

Firm Insights

Admissions & Qualifications

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Missouri
  • Illinois
  • Kansas
  • U.S. District Courts
    • Eastern District of Missouri
    • Western District of Missouri
    • District of Kansas
    • District of Colorado
  • U.S. Courts of Appeals
    • Eighth Circuit

Educational Background

  • J.D., University of Missouri School of Law (2006)
  • B.A., Political Science & History, University of Wisconsin – Madison (2002)

Leadership & Community Engagement

Current Leadership Positions

  • Kol Rinah | Board Member

Professional Organizations

  • The Missouri Bar
  • Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
  • Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association

Civic & Community

  • Kol Rinah
Eighteen Capes Sokol Attorneys Recognized as 2022 Best Lawyers in America
BBQ with a Side of Business Interruption: KC Court Finds Restaurant’s COVID-19 Insurance Claim Covered
The Brown Recluse and Hope for Pandemic Shuttered Missouri Businesses: Business Interruption Policies May Cover COVID-19 Losses