HILARY LOYNES PALAZZOLO


About Hilary

Hilary Palazzolo joined The Rudnicki Firm in 2019, bringing with her over 10 years of experience in commercial litigation. Hilary focuses her practice in the areas of insurance coverage disputes, defense against violations of consumer protection statutes, and business and financial services litigation. She has experience with trials, handling arbitrations, practicing both in-house and in private practice, and representing clients in both national and international forums.

As a commercial litigator, Hilary enjoys tackling new and complex issues and helping clients reach resolutions successfully and efficiently. Hilary has served (on secondment) as in-house counsel for two Fortune 500 clients, which gives her an in-house view on issues that she uses to craft creative solutions from both a legal and a business perspective.

At the Rudnicki Firm, Hilary handles a high volume of cases. She manages an entire region’s docket of cases defending against alleged violations of consumer protection statutes. In addition, Hilary brings significant experience to her product liability practice, focusing on commercial litigation. Finally, Hilary maintains a practice in insurance law, able to support both insurers and corporate policyholders in insurance coverage, an area in which she brings over a decade of experience.

Education

Hilary received her B.A in International Studies from Appalachian State University where she graduated Cum Laude in 2003. During her undergraduate career, Hilary had the impactful experience of teaching at the William Shakespeare School in Quito, Ecuador in 2001. Following graduation, Hilary taught at the Thai-Chinese International School in Bangplee, Thailand in 2004. She additionally served as the Associate Director of the Native American Student and Community Center in Portland, Oregon. These experiences uniquely affected Hilary’s practice of law, enhancing communication and negotiation prowess, and developing an appreciation for the intersection of culture, communication, and leadership.

Hilary went on to graduate Magna Cum Laude from the Hamline University School of Law in 2008. Hilary enjoyed a successful career as a law student, with experience in the Hamline Law Review (Symposium Editor, 2007 -2008; Associate Editor, 2006 – 2007), the Jessup International Moot Court, and the Minnesota Justice Foundation. Hilary also served as a Constance L. Bakken Research Fellow (2006 – 2008).

Legal Practice

Hilary served as a law clerk at Larson King, LLP, where she became a Partner in 2017. While at Larson King, Hilary balanced a diverse civil ligation practice with a focus in product liability, financial services, insurance, and reinsurance. Hilary gained expertise in the representation of clients in all stages of litigation, arbitration, and counseled clients in highly regulated areas of law.

During her time at Larson King, Hilary had the unique opportunity to spend time working in-house to fulfill short-term needs of two Fortune 500 clients. She served as in-house legal counsel in the Environmental Claim Unit, interpreting and applying environmental statutory and common law across jurisdictions and providing coverage opinions in complex cases involving a variety of lines of insurance coverage. She also served as in-house legal counsel to assist the litigation department during an acquisition. Here, Hilary developed strategy and managed legal counsel globally across practice areas including environmental and product liability. Hilary also served as chair of ABA TIPS Excess, Surplus Lines, and Reinsurance Committee, as a Vice-Chair of ABA TIPS Women Trial Lawyers Task Force, and as a member of Minnesota Women Lawyers and the National Association of Women Lawyers.

Hilary joined The Rudnicki Firm in 2019, establishing the firm’s satellite office in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Hilary has stepped in to manage a regional docket of matters defending against alleged violations of consumer protection claims. Hilary excels at strongly advocating for and protecting client interests while resolving disputes in an efficient and cost-effective manner.

Hilary’s insurance coverage practice concentrates on aiding insurers and corporate policyholders in determining policy coverage of loss or liability and in disputes between insurers related to questions of coverage. Hilary has experience in evaluating policyholder liability, assisting in the determination of insured rights, advocating for corporate policyholders in settlement negotiations, and more. Hilary most frequently engages in coverage litigation involving policyholder disputes or insurer coverage obligations, where she focuses on achieving the best possible outcome for her clients.

Hilary finds the practice of law empowering and is passionate about advocating for her clients. Her experience has lent her the unique ability to provide perspective and expertise in a varied commercial litigation caseload with current and past clients including financial service companies, product manufacturers and distributors, collection agency service providers, and insurance companies.

AUTHOR, SPEAKER, & COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT

Hilary is a prolific author and speaker. Most recently, Hilary has presented Contracts: Contractual Indemnity Clauses – Shifting Loss to Another Party for the Minnesota CLE Webcast. She has also presented Mortgage Servicing In-house Counsel Forum on the topic of Updated and Emerging Issues from the “Flyover” Circuits. Past speaking engagements have included presentations for the Minnesota Bar Association, the ARIAS Fall Educational Seminar, and The Corporate Counsel Summit on Litigation and Strategy.

As an author, Hilary has co-authored books and articles across the spectrum of topics in which she has expertise. Most recently, she is the co-author of Contractual Indemnity Clauses (2018) and Recent Developments in Excess, Surplus Lines, and Reinsurance, ABA’s Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal (2018.) Past publications include Excess, Surplus Lines, and Reinsurance Law, ABA’s Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal (Co-author, 2012 – 2018), Reinsurance Professional’s Deskbook – A Practical Guide (Contributor, 2015), and Consolidation of Arbitrations after Stolt-Nielsen, Defense Counsel (Co-Author, 2011).

For a full list of Hilary’s publications and seminars, please see below.

Hilary remains active in the legal community and charitable causes, taking leadership roles that allow her to give back to the community. She recently completed a stint as a Fellow on the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity and currently serves as the Immediate Past-Chair of the Excess, Surplus Lines, and Reinsurance Committee of the American Bar Association. In addition, Hilary is the founder of Women Launching Women Advocacy Group. She also volunteers her time as an advocate for low-income families suffering from domestic abuse for the Tubman Pro Bono Safety Project.

HONORS, AWARDS, & PUBLICATIONS

Member

  • AIDA Reinsurance & Insurance Arbitration Society (ARIAS)

  • American Bar Association

    • Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section (TIPS)

    • Vice-Chair, TIPS Women Trial Lawyers Task Force

    • Past-Chair, TIPS Excess, Surplus Lines and Reinsurance Committee (Chair-Elect, Aug. 2015 - Aug. 2017)

  • National Association of Women Lawyers

  • Minnesota Women Lawyers

  • Minnesota State Bar Association

  • Michigan State Bar Association

  • Chrysalis Pro Bono Safety Project Volunteer

Honors & Awards

  • Presidential Scholarship

  • Law Alumni Association Endowed Scholarship

Publications & Seminars

  • Presenter: Minnesota CLE Webcast, Contracts: Contractual Indemnity Clauses – Shifting Loss to Another Party (2018)

  • Co-Author: Contractual Indemnity Clauses (2018)

  • Presenter: Mortgage Servicing In-House Counsel Forum, Updates and Emerging Issues from the “Flyover” Circuits – Northern Edition (2018)

  • Co-Author: Recent Developments in Excess, Surplus Lines, and Reinsurance, ABA's Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal (Winter 2018)

  • Co-Author: Excess, Surplus Lines, and Reinsurance Law, ABA's Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Law Journal (2012-2018)

  • Contributor: Reinsurance Professional's Deskbook - A Practical Guide (2015)

  • Presenter: Minnesota Bar Association, New Lawyers Leadership Conference (2014)

  • Presenter: ARIAS Fall Educational Seminar (2013)

  • Co-Author: Consolidation of Arbitrations after Stolt-Nielsen, Defense Counsel (2011)

  • Co-Author: Swanson v. Brewster: Are the Minnesota Courts Reforming the Tort System? William Mitchell College of Law, Journal of Law and Practice (April 2011)

  • Co-Author: Arbitration Acts: A Desk Reference - Second Edition (2010)

  • Co-Author: A New “Must Use” Tool in Litigation? For the Defense (August 2010)

  • Co-Author: Are You Able to Disregard “Manifest Disregard” After Hall Street: A Continuing and Twisted Tale IADC Business Litigation Newsletter (November 2009)

  • Co-Author: Commercial Litigation Committee - Trade Secrets and Non-Compete Clause State-by-State Compendium, Minnesota, Non-Compete (2009)

  • Co-Author: Navigating Seller's Exception Statutes, For the Defense (February 2009)

  • Co-Author: Viability of Mandatory Arbitrations: Are Companies Still Allowed to Pick Their Own Poison? 74 IADC 4 (2007)

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Primary Practice Areas

  • Business Litigation

  • Environmental Litigation

  • Financial Services Litigation

  • Insurance

  • Mortgage Lending and Servicing Litigation

  • Products Liability

Admissions

  • State Bar of Michigan

  • State Bar of Minnesota

  • US District Court for the District of Minnesota

  • US District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin

  • US District Court for the Western District of Michigan