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Cary Johnson Hansel III

Litigation Attorney at Baltimore, MD

5.0   3 reviews
  • State Years
    Dist. of Columbia - DC 20 years
    Maryland - MD 24 years
  • Licensed for 20 years
    State DC
    Acquired 2004
    Status
    Good Standing No misconduct found
  • Licensed for 24 years
    State MD
    Acquired 1999
    Status
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Cary

Learn Cary’s areas of practice.

2
Practice areas
  1. Appeals
    50%
    Winning at trial is one thing, but collecting a significant verdict often requires defending it on appeal. In more than twenty reported appellate decisions to his credit spanning over a decade, Cary Hansel has successfully protected more than $30M.

  2. Litigation
    50%
    With more than 15 years of award-winning trial experience, Hansel Law has the proven track record to achieve your goals. The firm's founder, Cary Hansel, has broad experience in high impact trial work designed to get results.

IF YOU NEED SUCCESSFUL AND EFFECTIVE REPRESENTATION IN TRIAL OR ON APPEAL, CALL CARY HANSEL.

Cary Hansel, who was recently voted Trial Lawyer of the Year by the Maryland Association for Justice, is the founder of Hansel Law, PC ().  Cary has extensive trial and appellate experience, representing clients in civil rights, constitutional law and government liability cases.  His broad practice also encompasses medical malpractice, business and contract disputes, employment law, public regulation, insurance litigation, products liability, and administrative law.

Cary obtained, and successfully defended on appeal, a verdict the Washington Post called “the largest made by a jury in a civil case involving abuse by Prince George's County police.”  The groundbreaking case established that citizens can hold municipalities liable for engaging in a “pattern and practice” of violating constitutional rights under the Maryland constitution.  This sea change in the law allows victims of government misconduct to introduce evidence of past wrongdoing in each new case, thus sharply raising the penalty for civil rights violators in Maryland.

Cary has also achieved significant settlements and awards in the area of unlawful and unconstitutional employment practices and discrimination.  He has successfully represented numerous victims of illegal employment practices, including a young woman whose employer, a fast-food chain, refused to permit her to wear work-appropriate religious garb, a country-club waitress who was sexually assaulted by a club owner, and a high-level federal government lawyer who suffered severe harassment after her boss inadvertently discovered she was a lesbian.

In a whistleblower case covered in such diverse outlets as the Wall Street Journal and Rolling Stone, Cary represented a Securities and Exchange Commission investigator wrongly terminated after uncovering historic security breaches and ethical violations at the SEC.  Cary’s client came to him after having been barred from SEC facilities based on false allegations.  As Cary soon demonstrated, the allegations were made in an effort to discredit the SEC investigator after he exercised his duty to disclose the wrongdoing he discovered to Congress.  After less than six months of aggressive representation, including the filing of a lawsuit, the SEC was forced to drop all of its allegations, publicly clear the investigator’s record, reinstate him and pay him the third largest payment ever made to a federal whistleblower as a result of retaliation.

In a First Amendment case, Cary successfully represented a long-time government employee fired for being a member of the wrong political party.  Cary’s work gave rise to legislative hearings and new laws protecting government employees from termination for their private political views.  He also succeeded in reversing his client’s termination and obtaining a significant award.

In another First Amendment matter, Cary obtained the dismissal of a case in which the plaintiff sought to enmesh the court in changing the religious direction of a large church under the guise of challenging the election of its board of directors.

In an animal cruelty case, Cary represented the Humane Society in obtaining the first court order ever issued in Maryland to stop the use of steel-jawed leg-hold traps.  These traps, which are banned in many countries as cruel and inhumane, were being used despite the widespread availability of cost-effective and humane alternatives.

Cary’s appellate career includes the successful defense of over $30 Million in awards, the creation of a new cause of action in Maryland, and the expansion of citizens’ rights to recover just compensation from governmental wrongdoers and insurance companies.

Cary has also filed amicus curiae briefs in the Maryland Court of Appeals on behalf of the Maryland Education Coalition, American Association of University Women, League of Women Voters of Maryland, Maryland Association for Justice, and former chair of Maryland’s Commission on Education Finance, Equity and Excellence (the Thornton Commission).

Cary is frequently invited to lecture on a variety of legal topics for organizations, including the National Business Institute, the Levin School of Law at the University of Florida, the Louis L. Goldstein Criminal Law Seminar, Maryland Trial Lawyers Association, and Maryland and D.C. chapters of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Cary provided invited legislative testimony to the Joint Judiciary Committee of the Maryland Senate and House of Delegates in favor of the Equal Access to Justice Act, which was proposed in response to an opinion piece he had published in the Baltimore Sun.  He was also invited to testify before the Judiciary Committee of the Maryland House of Delegates during its consideration of legislation requiring the videotaping of police interrogations, which was proposed after one of his cases brought unlawful interrogation techniques to light.

Cary offered testimony to the Maryland Commission on the Death Penalty warning of the problem of false confessions and the real potential for them to lead to the execution of innocent people.  The Commission quoted him in its final report, recommending abolition of the death penalty in Maryland, a recommendation adopted by the legislature shortly thereafter.

Recorded Oral Arguments
Potential clients are invited to watch one of Cary’s oral arguments. He is the second lawyer to appear in this video from a 2010 argument before the Maryland Court of Appeals:


Cary is also the second lawyer to be heard in this audio from a 2013 argument before the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit:


Press Coverage
Although some of his most successful cases are those in which he avoids media exposure, when a client hopes his or her case will help drive larger social change, Cary’s cases are frequently featured in the media. He has been quoted in more than 300 newspapers nationwide and has appeared on television numerous times.

Reported Cases
Cary’s reported cases include the following:

Cole v. State Farm Mutual Ins. Co., 359 Md. 298; 753 A.2d 533 (2000) (changing Maryland law to make it easier to recover fair compensation from an insurance company)

Wells, et al. v. Chevy Chase Bank, et al., 363 Md. 232; 768 A.2d 620 (2001) (amicus curiae)

Compucel Corp. v. Comm. of Internal Revenue, 2002-1 U.S. Tax Cas. (CCH) P50, 284 (2002)

Moore v. Norouzi, 371 Md. 154; 807 A.2d 632 (2002) (amicus curiae on behalf of Maryland Trial Lawyers Association; the Court of Appeals held that, “We agree with the Amicus Maryland Trial Lawyers Association,” and adopted the position, which opened a new avenue of recovery for civil rights violations.)

LGB Group LLC v. John Booty, 2004 MDBT 1 (Cir. Ct. for Prince George's Co., 1/28/04) (one of the first trial court opinions reported under Maryland Rule 16-205)

Maryland State Bd. of Educ. v. Bradford, 387 Md. 353; 875 A.2d 703 (2005) (amicus curiae)

Kane v. Board of Appeals of Prince George’s County, 390 Md. 145; 887 A.2d 1060 (2005)

Public Service Com’n of Maryland v. Wilson, 389 Md. 27; 882 A.2d 849 (2005)

Prince George’s County v. Longtin, 190 Md. App. 97 (2010)

Prince George’s County v. Longtin, 419 Md. 450 (2011) (establishing a new cause of action and protecting the largest verdict against the County in a police misconduct case)

Jones v. State, 38 A.3d 333 (2012) (redefining the boundaries of the public duty doctrine to make it easier to recover fair compensation in cases of police misconduct)

Brooks, et al. v. Jenkins, et ux., No. 1499, Sept. Term, 2012. (Decided: December 16, 2014) (affirming one of the highest verdicts in history for the intentional shooting of a dog)

Rodriguez v. State, No. 0748, Sept. Term, 2012 (Md. Ct. Spec. App. 2014) (reinstating an award for over $18 Million at Mr. Hansel's request)
 

Photos and videos

Location

Hansel Law, PC

Reviews

5.0 / 5.0
  3 customer reviews
5 Star
 
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Posted by Dean | September 27, 2016
This review is from a person who hired this attorney.
| Hired Attorney
Standing up for you when nobody else would.
Cary Hansel is the hardest fighting, get to the bottom of case attorney I've had pleasure of being represented by. My wife was shot and killed in our own home by a police officer standing on the sidewalk. Within a few days I was sitting across from Cary who assured me he would find out what happened in the death of my wife. Throughout the case it didn't matter what government agency stood in way who applied pressure to keep the truth under wraps, he didn't care it was full steam ahead. Prior to hiring Cary I actually had a lawyer tell me he might be able to win the case but didn't want to go up against the police and all the things that come with it. My point being Cary's only concern was the truth !! What and how it happened and goverment malfeasance was not going to stand in the way of that when it came to getting closure for our family. Ive never met a attorney more genuinely concerned about the TRUTH and getting it out than Cary Hansel. I would not hesitate to have him in my corner for anything going forward. He is a Honerabe and trustworthy man in a profession not always granted those attributes. I felt truly blessed to have him and his team Fighting for us during the most difficult time in my family's life.
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Posted by anonymous | October 13, 2015
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Life saver
I cannot thank Cary Hansel enough for helping a friend in need with legal advice and guidance, and swift actions that may have saved my friends life when things went wrong inside the jail. Cary knows the law and understands the importance of time sensitive information and finding the correct help for whatever the situation. Because my friend is in another state, I could not hire him as an attorney, but I would highly recommend Cary and his team. Thank you for everything you did to help!
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Posted by Keith Longtin | July 14, 2015
My life and future in his hands
In 1999, I was facing murder charges for the rape and murder of my then wife, Donna. The police had no physical evidence against me in this case. They only harbored twisted stories and suspicions that they had assumed and imagined. I went into the police station an innocent husband, reporting my missing wife, but was not allowed to leave the police station for another 8 months. Since I was recently separated from my wife, I was the number one suspect in the minds of the police. They held me in interrogation for 38 hours, depriving me of food and sleep. They hounded me about the crime, telling me what they believed had happened to my wife. They shoved horrifically, graphic crime scene photos of my own wife into my face. They coerced a confession out of me by making repeat what they considered the scenario of the circumstances surrounding the violent attack. I was at a desperate place in my life, staring a murder charge straight in the face, facing the possibility of prison as my future. I was only released based on DNA that was conclusive that another person had raped and murdered my wife. Even after the police were informed of the DNA of the other man, who had raped another 8 women in as many months, I still sat in jail for yet another three months. After 8 months of being jailed for a crime I did not commit, missing my wife’s funeral, losing all my personal possessions due to eviction while I sat in jail, I was finally released. But, to what? I hired Carey J. Hansel, III, to represent me in a civil lawsuit against the police department and Prince George County, MD, to get vindication for false imprisonment and violating my constitutional and civil rights during this ordeal. Carey never gave up on me. He pressed through every opposition that rose up against me. He held my future and my life in his hands and never let me down. Carey let me freely express my faith and belief to him that God would reveal the truth about this entire matter and I would be set me free. Carey never backed off this case and supporting me because of fear or not understanding my faith in God. He never judged me for my faith and my belief that God would exonerate me. A strangers at our first meeting, Carey represented me and stood up for me with unwavering commitment and dedication, to the point that I now consider him a life-long friend and trusted companion. Carey maintained a high level of veracity and pursued this case as if he was representing a member of his own family. He fought for me at great lengths. Carey stayed true to his integrity and fought side by side with me through three appeals, spanning nearly 11 years, and winning the largest civil lawsuit award in the history of Maryland. Because of this case, new pattern and practice laws have also been implemented to protect people during interrogation, including the use of cameras in interrogation rooms now.
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Cost

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Contact for Details

Resume

AVVO RATING 10.0 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Founder
  • Hansel Law, PC
  • 2015 - Present
  • Shareholder
  • Joseph, Greenwald & Laake, PA
  • 1999 - 2015

Education

  • George Washington University National Law Center
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1999
  • Washington and Lee University
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1996

Sample of Legal Cases

  • Cole v. State Farm Mutual Ins. Co., 359 Md. 298; 753 A.2d 533 (2000)
  • Victory for Mr. Hansel's client
  • Wells, et al. v. Chevy Chase Bank, et al., 363 Md. 232; 768 A.2d 620 (2001) (amicus curie)
  • Victory for Mr. Hansel's client
  • Moore v. Norouzi, 371 Md. 154; 807 A.2d 632 (2002) (amicus curie)
  • Victory for Mr. Hansel's client
View all legal cases

Associations

  • Maryland Association for Justice, Civil Rights & Constitutional Law Section
  • Co-chair
  • 2020 - Present
  • American Association for Justice
  • Member
  • N/A
  • Maryland Trial Lawyers Association
  • Past Board Member
  • N/A
  • American Bar Association
  • Member
  • N/A
  • Prince George's County Bar Association
  • Member
  • N/A
  • Montgomery County Bar Association
  • Member
  • N/A
  • Maryland ACLU
  • Past Board Member
  • N/A
  • American Inns of Court, Marlborough Inn
  • Past President
  • N/A
  • Maryland Attorney General’s Task Force on Electronic Weapons
  • Appointed Member
  • N/A
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • Leadership in Law Award
  • Maryland Daily Record
  • 2020
  • Super Lawyer
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2020
  • Super Lawyer
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2019
  • Super Lawyer
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2018
  • Super Lawyer
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2017
  • Super Lawyer
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2016
  • Trial Lawyer of the Year
  • Maryland Association for Justice
  • 2016
  • Super Lawyer
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2015
  • Rising Star
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2014
  • Rising Star
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2013
  • Trial Lawyer of the Year
  • Maryland Association for Justice
  • 2011
  • Rising Star
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2011
  • Rising Star
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2010
  • Rising Star
  • Maryland Super Lawyers
  • 2009
  • President's Award
  • Maryland Trial Lawyer's Association
  • 2007
  • Wall of Heros
  • Maryland ACLU
  • N/A
View all awards

Publications

  • Maryland Trial Reporter
  • Appeallate Watch
  • N/A

Speaking Engagements

  • Mr. Hansel offered testimony quoted in the Commission's final report
  • Legislative Testimony
  • N/A
  • Monthly Meeting
  • Recent Civil Rights Cases in Maryland
  • N/A
  • Meeting of Incoming Students
  • The Advantages of a Large Suburban Law Firm
  • N/A
  • Joint Meeting
  • Police Misconduct and Civil Rights in Maryland
  • N/A
  • Hearings on the Equal Access to Justice Act
  • Invited Testimony
  • N/A
  • Hearing on a bill to require video taping of confessions in police custody
  • Invited Testimony
  • N/A
  • Conference
  • Recent Developments in Appeallate Law
  • N/A
View all speaking engagements

Attorney endorsements

Received (4)
Given (7)
Endorse Cary
Civil rights Attorney | Jan 23
Relationship: Worked for lawyer
"Cary was a partner at a firm where I worked as an associate. Cary is “the” civil rights lawyer in Maryland. If you have a civil rights case, look no further."
Appeals Attorney | Jun 30
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse Cary Hansel wholeheartedly, and some. I had a case with a multimillion dollar verdict 2010 or so to which the Defendants appealed. My co-counsel at the trial level said that there was only one appellate lawyer to see for the job and he introduced me to Cary Hansel. What follows here is a true story but sums up a great deal of what I am trying to convey. In the court of Special Appeals we were the last case of the morning and some cases had two to three lawyers. After our case was over I sincerely told Cary that out of all of those lawyers none of them was qualified to even carry his briefcase. He is that good, period."
Litigation Attorney | Jul 15
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I have had the honor and privilege of working with Mr. Hansel over the years as both co-counsel and as opposing counsel. He is knowledgeable, skilled and a tireless advocate for his clients. I happily recommend Mr. Hansel to any client looking for representation. I endorse this attorney."
Litigation Attorney | Jul 06
Relationship: Worked for lawyer
"I was co-counsel with Cary in a case and he is a top-notch lawyer; bright, extremely diligent and very highly respected in the community."
Criminal defense
Litigation
Medical malpractice
Personal injury
Litigation

Avvo Contributions

This attorney hasn't created any legal answers in Q&A or legal guides recently on Avvo.

Baltimore Litigation Lawyer Cary Johnson Hansel III
Cary Johnson Hansel III
Litigation Attorney
Baltimore, MD
Licensed for 24 years