Tessan Wess



Tessan Wess is a partner in the Portland office of Lewis Brisbois and a member of the Transportation practice. She defends individuals and businesses in a wide variety of complex matters including premises liability regarding retailer, hospitality, and transportation, hotel-related claims; product liability; and catastrophic bodily injury claims. Additionally, Tessan has extensive experience with first party coverage issues and bad faith litigation.

As a defense-minded litigator, Tessan has achieved favorable results for clients through thoughtful procedural and substantive legal strategy. Recent and representative successes include:

  • Obtained dismissal for lack of personal jurisdiction in Federal Court in a copyright infringement action.
  • Secured summary judgment dismissal of premises liability claim against franchisee.
  • Obtained pre-answer dismissal of medical malpractice claim on statute of limitations claim with complex notice issues.
  • Received defense verdict on a battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress claim for lack of respondeat superior.

In addition to her role as a litigator, Tessan serves as the Editor of Judge Biographies for The Verdict and as the Vice Chair of Product Liability for the Oregon Association of Defense Counsel.  In these positions, Tessan stays connected with Oregon’s legal community and apprised of legislative efforts that may impact the firm’s clients.

Primary Area(s) of Practice

  • General Liability
  • Products Liability
  • Insurance Coverage
  • Transportation





U.S. District Court of Oregon

U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington

U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit


  • Vice Chair, Product Liability Section, Oregon Association of Defense Counsel

Awards & Honors

Super Lawyer Rising Star in Oregon, 2018, 2020-2021

Professional Presentations

  • Speaker, "Limitations on Liability in a Post-Bagley and Covid World, OADC Fall Seminar," November 19, 2020
  • Speaker, “Getting Your Point Across: Effective Witness Testimony,” OADC Annual Convention, June 20 - 23, 2019
  • Speaker, "Don’t Leave! The Heartbreak of Handling Employee Leaves of Absence," Oregon Association of Legal Administrators (ALA) Human Resources Management Meeting, February 2019
  • Speaker, "Who? What? Where? Sorting Out Coverage in an Increasingly Small World," OADC Annual Convention, June 2018
  • Speaker, "Sticky Green: Legal Implications of Marijuana Legalization," OADC Annual Convention, June 2015
  • Speaker, "Let’s Be Blunt: Clearing the Haze Surrounding Legalized Marijuana," CPCU All Industry Day, November 2014


Nova Southeastern University

Juris Doctor, 2010

University of Central Florida

Bachelor of Science, 2007


Article, "Recreational Marijuana and Insurance Coverage Considerations," The Verdict (Issue 3, 2015)

Trial Successes

Obtained a defense verdict for Lewis Brisbois client, a nightclub. The jury determined that there was no respondeat superior liability. Because the bouncer was not a named defendant in the suit, the inquiry ended there. August 2020