Robert L. Bowman



(206) 373-7239

(206) 621-8783

Robert L. Bowman has significant experience in aviation litigation matters, complex civil litigation matters, including the defense of claims for construction defects, personal injury, wrongful death, product liability, negligence, and breach of contract.

Robert earned his undergraduate degree in engineering from the U.S. Military Academy, an MBA from the University of South Florida, and his law degree from the University of St. Thomas School of Law in Minneapolis. Prior to attending law school, Robert served for six years as an officer and helicopter pilot in the U.S. Army.



Pilots Association Wants SCOTUS Review of Airplane Product Liability Issue

November 21, 2016

Robert Bowman and Rachael Wallace comment on the recent request of an aircraft pilots association of the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse a decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit that allowed states to impose their own safety standards in place of federal law.


Split Third Circuit Decision Revives Claims Arising From Fatal 2005 Cessna Crash

November 09, 2018

Robert L. Bowman and Robert F. Foster discuss the Third Circuit's decision in Sikkelee v. Precision Airmotive Corp., that held state-law claims brought against an aircraft engine manufacturer were not conflict preempted by federal law. This decision places equipment manufacturers and other defendants at greater risk of being held liable for state law-based accident claims and other related cases.

AOPA Asks Supreme Court to Review Sikkelee Decision; Urges FAA Preemption [Aviation Alert]

October 25, 2016

Rachael Wallace and Robert Bowman discuss AOPA's amicus curiae brief that asked the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse a decision from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, which allowed states to apply state standards of care to the field of aviation product liability.

“Auto-Pilot” May Not Be Perfect, But It May Be Better [Products Liability Prevention & Defense Blog]

July 27, 2016

Virtually every day there are media reports regarding the introduction of driverless cars to mainstream consumers.  As driverless cars rapidly accelerate from concept to commercialization, it is becoming increasingly apparent that technological refinements remain necessary and are ongoing in...

U.S. DOT Moving Closer to Certification of Driverless Cars [Products Liability Prevention & Defense Blog]

June 13, 2016

Motor vehicle design continues to make significant technological leaps incorporating a number of automated features, with many manufacturers pioneering the concept of driverless cars. What was once the stuff of science fiction is making significant headway towards full-scale production and...

Federal Preemption Narrowed For Aviation Suppliers In Sikkelee v. Precision Airmotive Corp. [Products Liability Prevention & Defense Blog]

May 02, 2016

On April 19, 2016, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals issued its opinion on the issue of federal preemption in Sikkelee v. Precision Airmotive Corp.  The sixty-one page opinion effectively narrowed the scope of federal preemption and held that aviation product liability claims are to be controlled...

Industry Sectors


  • University of St. Thomas School of Law — Minneapolis, J.D., 2006
  • University of South Florida, M.B.A., 1999
  • United States Military Academy, B.S., 1987
  • Washington
  • U.S. District Court -- Western District of Washington
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • Washington Bar Association
  • Washington Defense Trial Lawyers Association