O'Brien and Ryan, LLP - Attorneys at Law
John F. O'Brien, III

(1944 - 2022)

The loss of John O'Brien is one so immense that it cannot be summarized in a few words. A lawyer with a law enforcement background, John had an illustrious career filled with interesting and varied experiences. His knowledge, skill and integrity were widely known, his leadership and strength greatly admired, and his written and spoken words intensely revered. John was not only an outstanding litigator, he was also a superb colleague and friend. In addition to his demanding legal career, John was a passionate volunteer. And he always had time to say hello to Firm members, friends and colleagues. He was an amazing presence in our lives. There are no words to convey how deeply he will be missed.

John was an accomplished trial attorney and a well recognized leader in the defense of medical malpractice lawsuits. He had been a long time lecturer to physicians, residents and nursing staffs at The University of Pennsylvania Medical School on medical litigation, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, the duPont Institute, Pennsylvania Hospital, the Rothman Institute, Hahnemann Hospital and others. His lectures involved virtually every specialty in medicine as well as discussions of actual trials based on his hundreds of courtroom trial and verdict experiences. He appeared on local television and radio shows as a medical litigation consultant. He lectured at the National Judicial College Conferences at the University of Nevada regarding complex medical litigation.

John was a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates. Membership in the American Board of Trial Advocates is by invitation extended to qualified trial attorneys whose careers have been characterized by demonstration of skill, integrity, and experience in the special art of advocacy.

From 1967 through 1980, Mr. O'Brien served in several capacities with the U.S. Department of Justice in numerous major cities throughout the United States. His career included undercover operations, Chief of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Investigations/Organized Crime Strike Force. He served as Congressional Liaison and United States Senate Liaison for Drug Enforcement Legislation from 1978 through 1980.

Practice Areas:

Recent Representative Matters:

Named to Pennsylvania Super Lawyers:

  • 2004
  • 2005
  • 2006
  • 2007
  • 2008 (Top 100 Philadelphia)
  • 2009
  • 2010 (Top 100 Philadelphia)
  • 2011

Bar Admissions:

  • Pennsylvania, 1980
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit, 1981
  • U.S. Supreme Court


  • Widener University School of Law, Wilmington, Delaware, 1980, J.D.
  • American International College, 1967, B.A.

Classes/Seminars Taught:

  • Presenter, Legal Perspective on the Medical Care of the Neurovascular Patient in NJ, Capital Health 2nd Annual Comprehensive Care of the Neurovascular Patient in New Jersey, Atlantic City, NJ April 2010
  • Instructor, Complex Medical Negligence Litigation, National Judicial College (University of Nevada), Accredited for judges both nationally and internationally, 1994 - 2011
  • Instructor, The University of Pennsylvania Medical School
  • Instructor, Hospital of University of Pennsylvania
  • Instructor, Lankenau Hospital
  • Instructor, Pennsylvania Hospital
  • Consultant and Instructor, The Rothman Institute
  • Instructor, Alfred I. duPont Institute
  • Instructor, Graduate Hospital
  • Instructor, Hahnemann Hospital

Professional Associations and Memberships:

  • Board of Directors - Rothman Institute Orthopaedic Foundation
  • American Board of Trial Advocates
  • American Bar Association, Committee on Law & Medicine
  • Pennsylvania Bar Association
  • Philadelphia County Bar Association
  • Montgomery County Bar Association
  • Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association
    • Pennsylvania Legal Advisor
  • Association of Former Federal Narcotics Agents
    • Legal Advisor

Hickory Pointe
2250 Hickory Rd, Suite 300
Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462
Phone: (610) 834-8800
Fax: (610) 834-1749