John W. Ralls

John Ralls


p: 650-458-4041
vcard: John Ralls

University of California, Berkeley
School of Law (formerly Boalt Hall) (JD, 1990)

University of California, Berkeley
(AB, 1987), Phi Beta Kappa

Howrey LLP
Partner 2008-2011

Thelen LLP (and predecessors),
Associate 1994-1997
Partner 1998-2008

Pettit & Martin
Associate 1990-1994

Fellow, American College of Construction Lawyers
Who’s Who Legal—Construction, 2018 to present

Editor, The Construction Lawyer ABA Forum on Construction Law, 2008-2012

Associate Editor, The Construction Lawyer, ABA Forum on Construction Law, 2004-2008

Life Fellow, American Bar Foundation, 2007 to present

Northern California Super Lawyer, 2007-2020

Associated General Contractors of California, Legal Advisory Committee, Chair, 2004 and Vice Chair, 2003.


United States Court of Appeals for the Federal and Ninth Circuits

United States District Court for the Northern, Central, and Eastern Districts of California

United States District Court for the Western District of Tennessee (pro hac vice)

United Stated District Court for the District of Arizona (pro hac vice)

United Stated District Court for the District of Delaware (pro hac vice)

Circuit Court of Virginia (pro hac vice)

District Court of Harris County, Texas (pro hac vice)

Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals

Civilian Board of Contract Appeals (and its predecessor, the GSBCA

John Ralls is a trial attorney who specializes in construction claims, disputes, and counseling. He spent over 20 years with major national firms (including Thelen LLP and Howrey LLP) where he built a broad construction and public contracts practice. He represents owners, design professionals, general contractors, subcontractors, equipment suppliers, and construction managers in trials, arbitrations, mediations, and negotiations. He also provides contract, dispute, and licensing advice before, during, and after construction projects. He has provided these services on a variety of projects, including commercial buildings, transportation projects, university buildings, convention centers, wind energy projects, hospitals, civil works, military installations, and industrial facilities. He has represented clients in trials, arbitrations, and mediations, throughout the United States, and has tried or arbitrated cases in California, Nevada, Washington DC, Virginia, Texas, and Hawaii.

He has obtained multi-million-dollar awards and verdicts on behalf of his clients and has recovered tens of millions of dollars on behalf of a public university system in construction defect litigation. He has also obtained defense verdicts and summary judgments in complex construction contract cases.

John Ralls has been listed as a Northern California Super Lawyer by San Francisco Law & Politics Magazine for the last twelve years. He is also a past Chair of the California Associated General Contractors Legal Advisory Committee. In 2019, he became a Fellow of the American College of Construction Lawyers.

He is a frequent writer and speaker on construction law topics. In 2013, he completed the editing (with Frank Elmore and Lauren Catoe) of the Second Edition of Fundamentals of Construction Law (published in 2012 by the American Bar Association). He was the Editor (2008-2012) and was the Associate Editor (2004-2008) of Construction Lawyer, the quarterly law journal of the ABA Forum on Construction Law.

He is married and the father of two. He enjoys cooking and playing tennis with his family.