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Robert F. Wagner

Of Counsel

T: 317.453.8660 | Mobile: 317.250.5642
F: 317.630.2790
E: rwagner@lewiswagner.com

Legal Assistant

Sydney Cooper

T: 317.237.0500
E: scooper@lewiswagner.com

Biography

Robert has distinguished himself as one of the Midwest's most respected trial lawyers, having tried more than 200 cases in courtrooms throughout the United States. His trial work includes highly complex cases in the areas of wrongful death, products liability, commercial litigation, insurance defense, auto and premises liability. He is also involved in the mediation process and has mediated numerous complex legal issues over the years.

Robert has earned the respect of his legal colleagues and opposing counsel, as well as that of the Judiciary before whom he regularly appears in trial. Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law honored him with the 2015 Distinguished Alumni Award. Robert was also named as one of Indiana’s top 15 “Distinguished Barristers of 2008,” by The Indiana Lawyer and listed as an Indiana Super Lawyer®, 2004-2017.

At the national level, Robert’s legal peers have recognized him as one of The Best Lawyers in America® in 2005-2018 in the fields of Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants; and Product Liability Litigation Defendants. Robert is a frequent lecturer on a wide range of continuing legal education topics and is a long-term faculty member of the National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA), volunteering several weeks each year to teach NITA’s Regional and Midwest courses on “Deposition Skills” and “Building Trial Skills.” He has also been involved for years in teaching Trial Advocacy with ICLEF.

Robert’s impact upon the people of Indiana has even been noted at the highest levels of our State government. In 1989, Governor (now Senator) Evan Bayh bestowed Indiana’s highest honor on Robert, naming him as a “Sagamore of the Wabash.” Robert has had a great impact on the legal community and the firm, contributing significantly in the areas of politics and community service. Robert has run numerous political campaigns in the State and Marion County including campaigns for U.S. Senator, Secretary of State, Gubernatorial, and several judges. He has also managed numerous candidates at state conventions.

He was instrumental in the planning, fundraising, and implementation of various programs intended to beautify, enrich, and otherwise aesthetically improve the Indianapolis community, particularly the inner city. Beginning in the mid-1990’s, Robert spearheaded efforts to plant hundreds of trees along West Street, the main corridor to and from the downtown area and received an award for Outstanding Individual for Urban Forestry for his dedication and commitment to Indiana's urban forests. He continues to this day to raise and contribute significant funds necessary to maintain this horticultural investment in the community. Since 1995, he has served as the Chairperson or Vice Chairperson for the White River State Park Development Commission.

Robert ‘s skills and natural leadership ability, combined with his business and insurance knowledge, have served to nurture and develop a community of trial and business lawyers at Lewis Wagner. Working daily alongside his partners, Robert applies his leadership, mentoring and teaching skills, to create a culture of excellence that will ensure the firm’s ability to confidently meet its clients’ legal need far into the future.

Experience

Filter Experience

Representative Cases

  • Marsh Supermarkets, LLC v. Roche Diagnostic Operations, Inc., 987 N.E.2d 72 (Ind. Ct. App. 2013).
  • Randles v. Indiana Patient's Compensation Fund, 860 NE2d 1212 (Ind. Ct. App.2007).
  • Georgos v. Jackson (Ind. Sup. Ct. oral argument), 790 NE2d 448 (Indiana Supreme Court 2003).
  • Inlow v. Henderson Daily Withrow & DeVoe, 787 NE2d 385 (Ind. Ct. App. 2003).
  • Elmer Buchta Trucking, Inc. v. Stanley, 744 NE2d 939 (Indiana 2001).
  • Wells v. Stone City Bank, 691 NE2d 1246 (Ind. Ct. App. 1998).

Honors & Awards

  • 50-year Practitioner Award, IndyBar, 2018
  • Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rated AV® Preeminent
  • The Best Lawyers in America® in the fields of Personal Injury Litigation – Defendants; and Product Liability Litigation Defendants, 2005-2019
    • Best Lawyers’ 2016 Indianapolis Product Liability Litigation - Lawyer of the Year
  • Indiana Super Lawyers®, 2004-2018
    • Top 50, Indiana Super Lawyers®, 2006-2007, 2011-2013, 2015
  • Distinguished Alumni Award, Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law, 2015
  • Inspire Award Finalist, College Mentors for Kids, 2015
  • The C. Joseph Russell Award, National Institute for Trial Advocacy, 2013
  • Distinguished Barrister, The Indiana Lawyer, 2008
  • Hoosier Heritage Lifetime Achievement Award, presented by Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson, June 21, 2007
  • Rabb Emison Award, Committee for Racial Diversity in the Legal Profession, Indiana State Bar Association, 2006
  • Voted one of the top personal injury defense lawyers in Indianapolis, by a poll of Indianapolis attorneys, Indianapolis Monthly, 1993
  • Sagamore of the Wabash, Governor Evan Bayh, 1989

Professional Associations

  • American Bar Association
  • American Board of Trial Advocates
    • Past member of the faculty
    • Past President of the Indiana Chapter
  • American Judicature Society
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Defense Trial Counsel of Indiana
    • Diplomat, 2000
  • Federal Bar Association
  • Indiana State Bar Association
  • Indiana Trial Lawyers Association
  • Indianapolis Bar Association
  • Indianapolis Bar Foundation
  • International Academy of Trial Lawyers
    • Diplomat, 2007
  • International Association of Insurance Receivers
  • Litigation Counsel of America, Trial Lawyer Honorary Society
    • Fellow
  • Sagamore American Inn of Court member
  • The Association of Trial Lawyers of America

Presentations

  • Trial Camp 2013, Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum, March 11, 2013.
  • Deposition Skills, NITA Mid-Central Deposition Program, National Institute for Trial Advocacy, 1999 - present.
  • Trial Advocacy Skills College, Indiana Continuing Legal Education Forum, 1998 - present.
  • Building Trial Skills, NITA Mid-Central, National Institute for Trial Advocacy, 1986 – present.

Civic & Community Involvement

Robert’s impact upon the people of Indiana has even been noted at the highest levels of our State government. Governor Evan Bayh bestowed Indiana’s highest honor on Robert, naming him a “Sagamore of the Wabash.” Robert has also had a great impact on the legal community and the firm, contributing significantly in the areas of politics and community service. Robert is active in governmental affairs and the Indianapolis community, and has been for many years. For the past twelve years, he has served as the Chairperson and Vice Chairperson for the White River State Park Development Commission.

Robert has run numerous political campaigns in the State and Marion County. He has also managed numerous candidates at state conventions.

He has been instrumental in the planning, fundraising, and implementation of various programs intended to beautify, enrich, and otherwise aesthetically improve the Indianapolis community, particularly the inner city. Beginning in the mid-1990’s, Robert spearheaded efforts to plant hundreds of trees along West Street, the main corridor to and from the downtown area. He continues to this day to raise and contribute significant funds necessary to maintain this horticultural investment in the community.

In The News

    Media Mentions

  1. May 30, 2018

    Mr. Wagner and Meghan Ruesch: Kudos In IN Lawyer

            Press Release

            1. Aug 15, 2018

              10 lawyers from Lewis Wagner were recognized in The Best Lawyers in America© 2019

            2. May 07, 2018

              Mr. Robert F. Wagner Recognized by IndyBar for 50 Years of Legal Practice

            3. Feb 20, 2018

              Lewis Wagner Announces 2018 Indiana Super Lawyers® & Rising Stars

            4. Aug 15, 2017

              Lewis Wagner Attorneys Selected For Inclusion In The Best Lawyers In America® 2018

            5. Feb 15, 2017

              Twenty Lewis Wagner, LLP Attorneys Named on 2017 List of Indiana Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

            6. Aug 15, 2016

              Lewis Wagner attorneys selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2017

            7. Feb 12, 2016

              Lewis Wagner Attorneys Selected by Indiana Super Lawyers as Top Attorneys
              Indiana Super Lawyers Magazine

            8. Aug 17, 2015

              90% of Lewis Wagner, LLP’s Equity Partners Selected For Inclusion in The Best Lawyers In America 2016; Four Named ‘Lawyer Of The Year’

            9. May 08, 2015

              Robert Wagner Receives IU McKinney School of Law's Distinguished Alumni Award

            10. Apr 09, 2015

              Robert Wagner to Receive Distinguished Alumni Award

            11. Feb 13, 2015

              100% of Lewis Wagner's Equity Partners Named Indiana Super Lawyers

            12. Feb 03, 2015

              Robert Wagner Named an Inspire Awards Finalist

            13. Aug 18, 2014

              80% of Lewis Wagner’s Equity Partners Selected for Inclusion in The Best Lawyers In America 2015; Three Named ‘Lawyer Of The Year’

            14. Feb 12, 2014

              70% of Firm Partners named Indiana Super Lawyers®

            15. Aug 15, 2013

              Robert Wagner, Tom Hays, John Trimble, Jerry Hammond, Rick Shoultz, Susan Cline, Dina Cox, Rich Blaiklock & Kyle Lansberry Selected for Inclusion in The Best Lawyers In America 2014

            Practice Areas

            Bar Admissions

            • State of Indiana, 1968

            Courts of Practice

            • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, 1979
            • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, 1979
            • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, 1968

            Education

            • Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law, J.D.
            • University of Connecticut, Storrs, Connecticut, B.S.