Kerensa has a nationwide practice defending clients sued for premises and product liability. She defends individual and multi-party personal injury, wrongful death and property damage claims across the country for industrial and consumer goods sellers and manufacturers. In addition to first-chairing multiple arbitrations, Kerensa has obtained favorable results for clients by focusing on early case resolution and dispositive motion practice. Her experience includes initial case assessment and negotiations, coordinating discovery, deposing witnesses, conducting fact witness interviews, attending hearings, drafting and arguing pre-trial motions and post-trial motions, witness preparation, and drafting appeals. As trial co-chair, Kerensa recently helped secure a favorable result in a three-week jury trial involving alleged toxic exposure. A key portion of her practice is advising clients on product and premises safety to minimize tort and product liability risk and exposure.
Prior to law school, Kerensa spent six years as an assistant women's basketball coach, coaching at her alma mater, the University of Missouri, and at Wichita State University and Murray State University. During her undergraduate years, Kerensa was a three-year team captain for the Mizzou women's basketball team, where she earned Academic All-America honors and was named to Mizzou Athletics All-Decade Team. In 2018, Kerensa was inducted into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame.
Kerensa has drafted and/or argued successful dispositive motions in both state and federal courts.
- STOP Restoration v. Williams Insulation (TopBuild), No. 15RY-CV01074, (Circuit Court of Ray County, Missouri 2020)(co-chaired successful trial result in a toxic tort case involving spray polyurethane foam insulation, following five hours of deliberation after a three-week trial).
- Preddy v. ADT LLC, No. 20-60971-CIV, 2020 WL 8572950, at *1 (S.D. Fla. Dec. 30, 2020) (applying doctrine of direct benefits estoppel to compel alarm services contract non-signatory to arbitrate her dispute with ADT).
- Heeter v. Honeywell Int’l Inc, 706 F. App’x 63 (3d Cir. 2017) (affirming district court’s holding that there was no proximate cause where the plaintiff alleged that the failure of the alarm system she purchased from the defendants allowed an intruder to steal firearms from her home, which he then used to murder her son in a different location).
- Wood v. ADT LLC, No. 2180739, 2020 WL 2781237 (Ala. Civ. App. May 29, 2020) (writ denied, Alabama Supreme Court, November 13, 2020) (affirming trial court’s grant of summary judgment of fraud claims where customer could not have reasonably relied on alleged fraud when she signed contract).
- Allstate Indem. Co. v. ADT LLC, No. 14-9494, 2015 WL 3798715 (N.D. Ill. June 17, 2015) (dismissing lawsuit by applying subrogation waiver and alternatively dismissing claims for negligence, gross negligence, breach of implied warranty, and violations of Illinois’s Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act for failure to state a claim).
- Home Owners Ins. Co. v. ADT LLC & ACE Sec. Sys., Inc., No. 15-cv-11262, 2015 WL 3763489 (E.D. Mich. May 21, 2015) (dismissing subrogation lawsuit involving claims for breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, breach of warranty, negligence, fraud and violations of the Michigan Consumer Protection Act due to plaintiff’s failure to file suit within a year, comply with Rule 9(b), and adequately allege the breach of a non-contractual duty).
- Nat’l Surety Corp. v. The Lawrence Grp. Living, L.L.C., Order Granting Summary Judgment (Mo. Cir. Ct. July 8, 2015) (entering judgment in favor of third-party defendant SimplexGrinnell based on the lack of evidentiary support for third-party plaintiff’s negligence claims).
Publications and Presentations
Analyzing the Unseen: Using a Certified Industrial Hygienist to Uncover and Explain Exposure Evidence, Webinar CLE, Exponent and Missouri Organization of Defense Lawyers, February 4, 2021.
Kerensa Cassis, Changes to Missouri’s Punitive Damages and Consumer Protection Laws Provide Greater Certainty for Litigants, MODL Quarterly Report, Fall 2020.
Amy M. Crouch & Kerensa Cassis, How Courts Apply Contact-Sports Exception To Nonplayers, Law360, June 11, 2018.
Adding Value to Your Clients: How to Self-Audit Existing Contracts to Enhance Legal Protections in Light of Business Realities, Association of Corporate Counsel’s Colorado Consumer & Product Liability Practice Group, March 28, 2018.
Kerensa E. Barr, How the "Boys of Fall" are Failing Title IX, 82 UMKC L. Rev. 181 (2013).