HanselLaw, PC
Trial and Appellate Counsel
About Us
​“We get results through straightforward and aggressive representation. The successes we achieve in partnership with our clients also help drive social and political change, leaving our world a better, more just place.”

Cary J. Hansel

Firm founder, Cary Hansel, was recently voted Trial Lawyer of the Year for the second time by the Maryland Association for Justice.  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 online.  Click here for video and audio of his appellate arguments.
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.  Click here for press coverage of our work.

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) (click here for opinion)

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) (click here for opinion)

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) (click here for opinion)

Brooks, et al. v. Jenkins, et ux., 103 A.3d 899 (2014) (affirming one of the highest verdicts in history for the intentional shooting of a dog) (click here for opinion)

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) (click here for opinion)

Cooper v. Rodriguez, 118 A. 3d 829 (MD Court of Appeals 2015) (affirming Mr. Hansel's arguments to reinstate a jury verdict) 

George Washington University Law School, JD, 1999
Washington and Lee University, BA, 1996

Bar Admissions
District of Columbia

Court Admissions
United States Supreme Court
U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
U.S. Court of Appeals Federal Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

Professional Affiliations
American Inns of Court, Marlborough Inn, Past President
American Civil Liberties Union of Maryland, Board of Governors
Maryland Attorney General’s Task Force on Electronic Weapons, Appointed Member
Maryland Association for Justice (MAJ), Board of Governors
American Bar Association
American Association for Justice
Montgomery County Bar Association
Prince George's County Bar Association

Awards & Honors
Trial Lawyer of the Year, Maryland Association for Justice 2016
​Trial Lawyer of the Year, Maryland Association for Justice 2011
President’s Award, Maryland Trial Lawyers Association
Wall of Heroes, American Civil Liberties Union

Bryan Riordan

Bryan is an associate attorney with Hansel Law, PC who shares the firm's demonstrated commitment to helping the people of Baltimore City.  As a law student, Bryan completed three clerkships with the Baltimore City Office of the Public Defender (OPD), volunteered in North Avenue District Court, and participated in and helped organize an OPD-sponsored expungement event.
In addition to his clerkship positions with the Baltimore City OPD, Bryan also served as a researcher for a University of Maryland Criminal Law professor, studying the racial-disparities in Baltimore City’s arrest rates, difficulties associated with criminal record expungement, and the collateral consequences of a conviction.

Prior to joining Hansel Law, PC, Bryan served as a Law Clerk for the Honorable M. Elizabeth Bowen in the Circuit Court for Harford County, served two years as a Staff Editor on the Journal of Health Care Law and Policy, was awarded a Maryland Public Interest Law Project grant, and a University of Maryland Public Interest Law Service Award.     
University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, JD, 2015
Stevenson University, BS, 2011

Bar Admissions
Maryland, 2015

Professional Affiliations
Maryland State Bar Association

Matthew D. Ling

Matt's cases involve government wrongdoing, whether it's excessive force, false arrest or other police misconduct. Litigating against the government is never easy, but by taking on these challenging cases, we can move the law in a direction that better protects citizens' rights. Matt Ling focuses on civil rights litigation, representing the victims of police misconduct and other abuses of government authority.

Matt enjoys grappling with the difficult and complex legal issues involved in constitutional and civil rights litigation, and takes particular satisfaction in those cases where the firm’s work can have a positive impact on the state of the law. For instance, Matt has worked on an appeal seeking to uphold an $18 Million jury verdict that was reduced by the trial judge based on Maryland damages caps. Matt is also working with the firm’s Employment practice, representing whistleblowers who report misuse of government resources and abuse of authority.

George Washington University Law School, JD, 2011
University of Rochester, BA, 2007

Bar Admissions
Maryland, 2012

Professional Affiliations
Montgomery County Bar Association
Prince George’s County Bar Association
Cary J. Hansel, Founder, Hansel Law, PC
2514 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218
Telephone: 301-461-1040
Facsimile: 443-451-8606
E-mail: cary@hansellaw.com
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Cary Hansel in Court
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Bryan Riordan, Associate, Hansel Law, PC
2514 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218
Telephone: 301-461-1040
Facsimile: 443-451-8606
E-mail: briordan@hansellaw.com
Matthew D. Ling, Associate, Hansel Law, PC
2514 N. Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21218
Telephone: 301-461-1040
Facsimile: 443-451-8606
E-mail: mling@hansellaw.com

Our Future Lawyers and Support Staff

Future Lawyers Tiana Boardman (L) and Samira Jackson (R)

​The strength of our firm comes from the deep commitment to justice for our clients shared by every member of the Hansel Law team.  Our dedication to you binds us together as a tight-knit family.  From the internships Hansel Law provides to top college students to our law clerks, legal assistants, our associates and our founder, we work as one cohesive unit to contribute to the quantum of justice in the world.