April Nelson Ross, Partner Washington, D.C.
Phone: +1 202.624.2687
1001 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20004-2595

April Nelson Ross is a partner in Crowell & Moring’s Washington, D.C. office. Her practice focuses on litigating complex health care, tort, and commercial disputes, with particular experience in class actions and multidistrict litigation proceedings. She represents clients in a broad range of industries and has experience litigating disputes in state and federal courts across the country.  In addition to trial-level work, April has substantial experience handling cases on appeal in federal and state courts, including the United States Supreme Court. In 2014 and 2015, April was selected by her peers as a Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers "Rising Star" for class actions and mass torts.

April has represented insurers, managed care organizations, and managed behavioral healthcare organizations in class actions and multidistrict litigation proceedings in both federal and state courts, as well as in arbitration proceedings. Her experience includes RICO and ERISA litigation, payor/provider reimbursement disputes, litigation brought under state and federal mental health parity statutes, antitrust litigation, and challenges to federal regulatory action under the Administrative Procedures Act. She has also briefed healthcare issues as amicus curiae before intermediate appellate courts and the U.S. Supreme Court. Recent matters include:

  • Representing Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies in MDL national and statewide class actions asserting antitrust claims.
  • Representing a major behavioral health plan in ERISA class action litigation challenging residential treatment guidelines.
  • Defeating class certification on behalf of a major behavioral health plan in an action alleging violation of California’s mental health parity, antidiscrimination, and unfair competition laws relating to the plan’s utilization review processes.
  • Achieving dismissal of all claims against Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies in MDL national and statewide class actions involving provider payment practices.
  • Successfully defending managed care companies against third-party subpoenas seeking proprietary vaccine safety data.
  • Briefing the scope of the Medicare Secondary Payer Act’s private cause of action before the Sixth Circuit as amicus curiae on behalf of a Medicare Advantage plan sponsor.
  • Briefing Medicare preemption issues before the Nevada Supreme Court as amicus curiae.

April's products liability and torts litigation experience includes defending clients in crisis management, environmental exposure mass actions, class actions seeking medical monitoring, nationwide product liability class actions, and international aviation MDL proceedings. She represents clients in a broad range of industries, including transportation, chemical, and consumer products. Her practice regularly involves work with scientific and medical experts. Recent matters include:

  • Achieving and upholding on appeal the dismissal of numerous coal companies in class actions alleging global warming in federal district and appellate courts, and before the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Achieving and upholding on appeal summary judgment for a Class 1 railroad in a putative class action litigation seeking medical monitoring following a derailment and chemical spill.
  • Achieving dismissal on forum non conveniens grounds of a U.S. component part manufacturer in MDL litigation arising from the crash of Air France Flight 447.
  • Serving as national coordinating counsel for a transportation client's docket of diesel exhaust exposure litigation.
  • Representing a chemical manufacturer in MDL class action litigation alleging property damage from an herbicide product.

In addition to her litigation practice, April advises clients on a full range of product liability and risk management issues. With a focus on chemical and consumer products, she counsels clients on issues that include product design and stewardship, labeling, failure and causation analysis, product recall, and regulatory compliance. With extensive experience defending product liability class actions, April strives to help clients develop strategies to avoid or mitigate the risk of future product-related litigation.

April earned her J.D. with high honors from Duke University School of Law and her B.A. in molecular and cell biology from the University of California at Berkeley. Prior to attending law school, April worked as a molecular biologist for a biotechnology company, focusing on drug development research for neurobiological diseases. She has co-authored four papers published in peer-reviewed scientific journals.

April is a member of the District of Columbia Bar and the North Carolina State Bar and is admitted to practice before various federal courts, including the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third and Sixth Circuits and the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.


Admitted to practice: District of Columbia, North Carolina

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Jan.04.2016 Crowell & Moring Elects Nine New Partners and Promotes 15 Associates to Counsel
Oct.27.2015 Super Lawyers Recognizes 90 Crowell & Moring Attorneys
Sep.30.2014 Super Lawyers 2014 Recognizes 90 Crowell & Moring Attorneys
Jan.26.2012 Crowell & Moring Elects Seven New Partners and Promotes 22 Attorneys to Counsel Positions
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