Skip to main content

Client reviews

Not yet reviewed

About me

Mark Behrens co-chairs the Washington, D.C.-based Public Policy Group of Shook, Hardy & Bacon L.L.P., an international law firm that primarily represents corporate defendants in complex civil litigation.  For over two decades, Mark has been extensively involved in liability law, defense litigation, civil justice reform, and counseling in the prevention of liability exposure.  He is a member of The American Law Institute (ALI) and was recently invited to serve as an Adviser to the ALI’s Restatement Third, Torts: Intentional Torts to Persons project.  Mark is a Martindale-Hubbell® AV Preeminent Rated attorney.  He has served on the adjunct faculty of The American University’s Washington College of Law.  In the fall of 2010, Mark taught Advanced Torts as a Distinguished Visiting Practitioner in Residence at Pepperdine University School of Law in California.

Mark has been listed as one of Washington, D.C.’s “top lawyers” by Washingtonian magazine and as a leading product liability defense attorney by Who’s Who Legal: The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers.  He has authored or coauthored over 140 amicus briefs on behalf of national and state business and civil justice organizations in cases before the United States Supreme Court, seven different federal appellate courts, thirty different state courts of last resort, and seven different state appellate courts.  He has also testified before the U.S. Congress and numerous state legislatures.  He has served as an expert witness in trials.

Mark has published over fifty scholarly articles in leading national journals and law reviews, including the Harvard Journal on Legislation, Cornell Journal of Law and Public Policy, and Texas Review of Law & Politics.  He is a recipient of a Burton Award for Legal Achievement and received an award from several national organizations for major research contributing to civil justice issues.  He has been quoted in The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and the National Law Journal, and has appeared on radio and television, including CNBC, MSNBC, Bloomberg, and CNN.

Mark is counsel to the Coalition for Litigation Justice; co-counsel to the American Tort Reform Association; Adviser to the American Legislative Exchange Council’s Civil Justice Task Force; and co-chair of the Tort and Product Liability Subcommittee of the Federalist Society’s Litigation Practice Group.  He is also a member of the Washington Legal Foundation’s Legal Policy Advisory Board, NFIB Small Business Legal Center’s Advisory Board, Product Liability Advisory Council, Inc., Lawyers for Civil Justice, and the Lawyers Committee of the National Center for State Courts.

Mark received his J.D. in 1990 from VanderbiltUniversityLaw School, where he was a member of the Vanderbilt Law Review and received an American Jurisprudence Award for achievement in tort law.  He received his B.A. in Economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1987.



Practice areas


  1. Litigation: 34%
  2. Class Action: 33%
  3. Business: 33%

Attorney endorsements

No endorsements

Endorsements from fellow lawyers are an important consideration for many when selecting the right attorney. Be the first to endorse your colleague!

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

Contact info

Shook, Hardy & Bacon LLP

1155 F St NW
Ste 200
Washington, DC, 20004-1313


DCActive 199105/24/2015
VAAuthorized to practice law199009/15/2015
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Burton Award for Legal AchievementBurton Foundation2001
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
PartnerShook Hardy & Bacon2001 - Present
Association namePosition nameDuration
NFIB Small Business Legal Center’s Advisory BoardN/A2011 - Present
American Law InstituteMember2008 - Present
Washington Legal Foundation Legal Policy Advisory BoardN/A2006 - Present
Product Liability Advisory Council, Inc.N/AN/A
Publication nameTitleDate
15 J. Health Care L. & Pol’y 173The Constitutional Foundation for Federal Medical Liability Reform2012
118:2 Obstetrics & Gynecology 335Medical Liability Reform: A Case Study of Mississippi2011
8 Rutgers J.L. & Pub. Pol’y 50Punitive Damages in Asbestos Personal Injury Litigation: The Basis for Deferral Remains Sound2011
31 N. Ill. L. Rev. 37The Need for Rational Boundaries in Civil Conspiracy Claims2010
17 Mich. St. J. Int’l Law 165Global Litigation Trends2009
28 Rev. Litig. 501What’s New in Asbestos Litigation?2009
37 Sw. U. L. Rev. 479The “Any Exposure” Theory: An Unsound Basis for Asbestos Causation and Expert Testimony2008
82 Or. L. Rev. 33Selective Due Process: The United States Supreme Court Has Said That Punitive Damages Awards Must Be Reviewed for Excessiveness, But Many Courts Are Failing to Follow The Letter And Spirit of The Law2003
68 Mo. L. Rev. 525I’ll Take That: Legal and Policy Problems Raised by Statutes That Require Punitive Damages Awards To Be Shared With The State2003
54 Baylor L. Rev. 331Some Proposals for Courts Interested in Helping Sick Claimants and Solving Serious Problems in Asbestos Litigation2002
11 Cornell J.L. & Pub. Pol’y 273The Case for Adopting Appointive Judicial Selection Systems for State Court Judges2002
103 W. Va. L. Rev. 1Fostering Mutual Respect and Cooperation Between State Courts and State Legislatures: A Sound Alternative to a Tort Tug of War2000
27 Wm. Mitchell L. Rev. 237Tort Reform Past, Present And Future: Solving Old Problems And Dealing With “New Style” Litigation2000
65 Brook. L. Rev. 1003Reining In Punitive Damages “Run Wild”: Proposals For Reform By Courts And Legislatures2000
37 Harv. J. on Legis. 483Federal Courts Should Decide Interstate Class Actions: A Call For Federal Class Action Diversity Jurisdiction Reform2000
36 Harv. J. on Leg. 269Federalism and Federal Liability Reform: The United States Constitution Supports Reform1999
34 Wake Forest L. Rev. 1057Medical Monitoring – Should Tort Law Say Yes?1999
16 U. Pa. J. Int’l Bus. Law 669Japan’s New Product Liability Law: The Citadel Of Strict Liability Falls, But Access To Recovery Is Limited By Formidable Barriers1996
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
Vanderbilt University Law SchoolLawJD - Juris Doctor1990
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
American Bar AssociationAsbestos Litigation and Bankruptcy Trusts2013