W. Eric Blumhardt



W. Eric “Ric” Blumhardt is a partner in the Walnut Creek office of Lewis Brisbois and a member of the Appellate and Insurance Coverage Practices. Mr. Blumhardt has been certified by the State Bar Board of Legal Specialization as a Specialist in Appellate Law. In his appellate practice, Mr. Blumhardt presents legal arguments cogently and concisely, crystalizing his client’s position in the simple yet compelling fashion appellate matters require. When his clients pursue their appellate rights beyond the trial court, he coordinates seamlessly with trial counsel to craft the most effective arguments to the appellate court. 

Mr. Blumhardt’s practice also encompasses providing insurance coverage advice and litigating disputes over coverage. He focuses on issue assessment and analysis, and manages the interpretation and litigation of most types of insurance policies, including commercial general liability, Employment Practices Liability, Directors and Officers, Errors and Omissions, and homeowners policies. Over the years, Mr. Blumhardt has advised on and litigated many complex coverage disputes including, among others, those involving food contamination, environmental contamination and remediation, additional insured endorsements, construction defects, and allocation of defense and indemnity payments among multiple insurers. 

Primary Area(s) of Practice

  • Appellate

Additional Experience



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

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

Supreme Court of the United States


  • Association of Defense Counsel on Northern California and Nevada, Board of Directors, 1997 – 2005, President, 2004 
  • Defense Research Institute 
  • Contra Costa County Bar Association

Awards & Honors

  • Certified Legal Specialist, Appellate Law, State Bar Board of Legal Specialization 
  • Martindale-Hubbell, AV Preeminent Rating 
  • Northern California Super Lawyer, Appellate, 2015-Present


University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law

Juris Doctor, 1983

University of California, Davis

Bachelor of Arts in Economics, 1976

Published Opinions

  • Oltmans Construction v. Bayside Interiors (2017) 10 Cal.App.5th 355 (indemnity agreements) 
  • Sutter Health v. Eden Township Healthcare Dist. (2016) 6 Cal.App.5th 60 (public entity law) 
  • DeSilva Gates v. Dept. of Transportation (2015) 242 Cal.App.4th 1409 (public contract bidding) 
  • Bay Cities Paving v. City of San Leandro (2014) 223 Cal.App.4th 1181 (public contract award) 
  • Richards v. Sequoia Ins. Co. (2011) 195 Cal.App.4th 431 (insurance coverage/bad faith) 
  • Gorman v. Tassajara Development Corp. (2009) 178 Cal. App. 4th 44 (pro per’s right to attorney’s fees) 
  • Gundogdu v. King Mai, Inc. (2009) 171 Cal.App.4th 310 (statute of limitations) 
  • Arntz Builders v. City of Berkeley (2008) 166 Cal.App.4th 276 (government tort claims procedure) 
  • Madden v. Summit View, Inc. (2008) 165 Cal.App.4th 1267 (Privette/Toland doctrine) 
  • Lambert v. Carneghi (2008) 158 Cal.App.4th 1120 (real estate appraisal/arbitral immunity) 
  • Urhausen v. Longs Drug Stores California (2007) Inc., 155 Cal.App.4th 254 (ADA liability) 
  • Connecticut Indemnity v. Superior Court (2000) 23 Cal.4th 807 (proper scope of legislative subpoena) 
  • Safeco Insurance Co. of America v. Superior Court (1999) 71 Cal.App.4th 782 (no action clause) 
  • Syufy Enterprises v. St. Paul Surplus Lines (9th Cir.) 73 F.3d 1154 (insurance coverage) 
  • Harbor Insurance Co. v. City of Ontario (1991) 231 Cal.App.3d 927 (insured’s obligation to cooperate with insurer)