Photo of Abby L. Risner

Abby L. Risner

Officer

“Our clients want to know which battles will move them toward their goals efficiently. There may be a million angles to consider, but our trial experience helps differentiate which ones will lead to progress.”

Admissions

  • Missouri
  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit

Education

J.D., Saint Louis University School of Law, cum laude, 2005, Order of Woolsack; Saint Louis University Public Law Review

B.A., Principia College, 2000, with Honors

Profile

Abby Risner’s extensive trial experience nationwide on behalf of companies gives her a keen understanding of what it takes to efficiently and effectively handle complex disputes. In her complex commercial litigation and class action practice, she defends energy companies, franchisors, manufacturers and distributors against claims related to consumer fraud, advertising, franchise termination, unfair business practices, contract disputes and other matters. Abby has tried cases to verdict and has experience in every phase of litigation.

Abby is the leader of Greensfelder's Energy Industry Group and routinely represents clients in petroleum marketing disputes, and advises on business issues associated with the Petroleum Marketing Practices Act (PMPA), retail motor fuel marketing, including pricing, contracts, antitrust, and termination issues. She has defended claims against oil companies related to termination under the PMPA and franchise laws, breach of contract and fraud claims, alleged unlawful motor fuel pricing practices, deed restrictions, and consumer protection claims. Her knowledge of the energy sector and the trial process has made her an important resource for the global companies she represents.

Abby also leads the Litigation Class Action group. Her experience includes prevailing on class claims through dispositive motions, complex class action settlements, counseling on the class action notice and claims process, as well as trial of a class action.

In her franchising and distribution practice, Abby counsels clients on termination of franchisees, distributors and sales representatives, as well as the litigation of resulting claims. She advises on state franchise, distributor and sales representative statutes and works with distributors facing disputes that arise as they bring their products and services to market.

During law school, Abby was a student extern in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri.

Professional Affiliations

  • Co-Chair, Petroleum Marketing Attorneys' Conference
  • Trustee, Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation
  • Advisory Board, Institute for Energy Law
  • American Bar Association, Section of Litigation, Energy & Environmental Committee, Former Programming Co-Chair
  • ABA Forum on Franchising, Former Program Committee
  • ABA Class Actions & Derivative Suits Committee, Former Roundtable Programming Co-Chair

  • The Missouri Bar
  • Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis
  • The Theodore McMillian American Inn of Court, St. Louis Chapter, Barrister, 2011-2014

Community/Civic Activities

  • Missouri Botanical Garden, Young Friends Council, Alumni Board of Directors

Honors & Awards

Honors & Awards

  • Missouri Lawyers Media Women’s Justice Award, 2019
  • Benchmark Litigation, Local Litigation Star, 2016-2020; Future Star, 2015
  • Missouri Lawyers Weekly, Up and Coming Lawyer, 2013

Experience

Representative Matters

  • Prevailed on summary judgment on Petroleum Marketing Practices Act claims in Crossroad Petroleum, Inc. v. BP West Coast Products LLC (S.D. Cal.).
  • Lead counsel in arbitration hearing related to development agreement for franchise before ICC in Paris, France.
  • Experience defending class actions asserting consumer protection claims under state laws, including Missouri, Illinois, California, Oregon, Colorado, Washington and Michigan.
  • Defense of major oil companies in both class actions and multi-district litigations (MDLs) involving consumer protection claims.
  • Defense and prosecution of claims concerning termination or nonrenewal under the Petroleum Marketing Practices Act.
  • Defeated class action pertaining to student loan servicing on motion to dismiss. Nelson v. Great Lakes Educ. Loan Servs., Inc. (S.D. Ill.).
  • Prevailed on summary judgment for amounts owed by franchisees and to enforce guarantees.
  • Defeated several claims, including a claim under the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act (MMPA) on motion to dismiss in class action.
  • Defense of major oil company against former operators of branded stations who claimed the defendant defrauded them and breached contracts in connection with the operation of those stations. Plaintiffs were seeking $28 million in damages. The case was dismissed entirely in favor of client.
  • Advising clients and defense in litigation of business models.
  • Advising on the sale of BP’s Texas City refinery, four terminals and part of its distribution network to Marathon Petroleum Corp., including branded wholesaler contracts supplying approximately 1,200 retail sites in Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Florida, as well as issues raised by wholesalers after the sale.
  • Lead counsel in litigation against more than a hundred dealers arising from termination of franchises.
  • Defense of class action brought under Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA).

News & Insights

Seminars & Speaking Engagements

  • "Multi-Branding, Multi-Channel of Trade Marketing and Antitrust"
    Petroleum Marketing Attorneys' Meeting, Houston, TX, October 26, 2018
  • "So You Want to Arbitrate?  Ten (or More) Ways to Improve Your Arbitration Clause"
    Association of Corporate Counsel, St. Louis Chapter, September 15, 2017
  • "Fuel Marketing & Petroleum Marketing Practices Act Update"
    American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers General Counsels’ Educational Forum, October 4, 2016
  • Association of Corporate Counsel, St. Louis Chapter, September 16, 2016
  • 2016 American Bar Association Petroleum Marketing Attorneys’ Meeting, Washington, D.C., April 15, 2016

Blog Posts

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