Ryan Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC
401 Union Street, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA 98101-2668
Ryan Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC
401 Union Street, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA 98101-2668

Ryan Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC
401 Union Street, Suite 1500
Seattle, WA 98101-2668

Kristin Nealey Meier

Kristin is a compassionate, skilled attorney who sets herself apart by providing her clients with excellent communication, transparency and quick response time. Adept at fighting for her client’s best interests, Kristin has a “work together” attitude to meet their needs and expectations.

From established technology companies, to nursing home organizations, to emerging start-ups, Kristin enjoys working with businesses in a variety of industries.  She focuses her varied litigation practice in the following areas:

Financial Services, Insurance, and Securities Regulatory Enforcement Defense

Kristin represents investors, financial planners, wealth managers, insurance companies and other professionals in the financial services and insurance industries with various claims, including class actions, regulatory proceedings and customer claims. She also defends registered investment advisors, investment advisor representatives, investment bankers, broker-dealers and registered representatives in regulatory investigations and disciplinary actions brought by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, FINRA, and the State of Washington Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) Securities Division. Kristin’s representation of insurance companies has included cases defending against claims of bad faith and denial of benefits for a variety of policies, including life, annuities and long-term care policies.


Having defended healthcare clients in litigation, regulation, transactional, and employment issues, Kristin counsels her healthcare clients on how they can best protect themselves from the complexities of regulation in the industry. She also counsels her healthcare practitioner clients about business issues, including business formation, business practices, regulations for their practices, investment, and employee issues. Her long-term care, skilled nursing, and assisted living facility, medical device and surgery center clients seek her advice about minimum wage, unionization and other employment issues, medical malpractice claims, and regulatory charges. Kristin’s understanding of her client’s business, combined with her knowledge of the legal and regulatory framework every provider must navigate, enables her to provide clarity in the midst of an ever-changing healthcare world.

Employment Rights, Benefits & Labor

All employers must deal with the evolving web of federal and state employment laws. In addition to representing employers in state and federal court, Kristin defends clients in investigations by the EEOC, Department of Labor, and other state and local agencies. Kristin also works with companies on a wide array of employment matters, including hiring and termination, healthcare, wage and hour, discrimination and harassment, and retaliation. She assists clients in drafting employment agreements, severance packages, employee handbooks, employment policies and developing strategies for avoiding problems resulting in litigation.

Additional Experience

The remainder of Kristin’s practice includes assisting clients with complex litigation in the following areas:

  • Executive and professional employment – helping business professionals and executives negotiate severance packages, negotiate non-compete and employment agreements and stock option agreements.
  • Company and corporate liabilities – assisting with director and officer liability, contract and lease disputes, and lawsuits involving product liability, non-compete arrangements, unfair business practices and intellectual property.
  • ERISA multiemployer plan withdrawal liability – assisting employers in navigating the complex ERISA regulations related to withdrawal from a multi-employer pension trust.
  • Environmental contamination – helping clients assert and defend claims under MTCA and CERCLA for environmental contamination claims.
  • Trademarks/Intellectual Property – represent clients in administrative and state and federal court proceedings to protect and enforce their rights to trademarks, trade secrets, and other intellectual property.

Kristin knows a legal issue has potential ramifications and she is adept at seeing around corners to avoid problems in helping decision-makers make choices that are in the best interests of all facets of an organization.

Professional and Community Activities
  • Chair, Ryan Swanson’s Litigation Group
  • Member, Washington Technology Industry Association
  • Member, LTC Risk Legal Forum
  • Member, Washington Healthcare Association
  • Member, Defense Research Institute
  • Beta Gamma Sigma, Business Honor Society
Speaking Engagements
  • Recent Developments in State Law, Ryan Swanson’s Annual Employment Law Virtual Seminar (2023)
  • Where you Work Matters: Legal Risks with your Hybrid and Remote Workforce, Ryan Swanson’s Annual Employment Law Virtual Seminar (2022)
  • The Latest on COVID & Beyond: Future Workplace Considerations, Ryan Swanson’s Annual Employment Law Virtual Seminar (2020)
  • Panelist, “Corona Around the World,” Dutch Employment Lawyers Association – LabourLaw United Digital Convention (February 2021)
  • The Legal Fight: Get Ready for COVID-Related Legal and Regulatory Claims, Washington Health Care Association Webinar (2020)
  • Your Future With & After COVID-19: What To Do Now and What To Expect, Ryan Swanson’s Employment Seminar (2020)
  • ADA Compliance – What Do I Do?, Ryan Swanson’s Annual Employment Law Seminar (2019)
  • Workplace Investigations (case study), Ryan Swanson’s Annual Employment Law Seminar (2018)
  • Healthcare Reform – What is Happening?, Ryan Swanson’s Annual Employment Law Seminar (2017)
  • Should I Stay or Should I Go? FMLA and Other Leave and Obligations (2016)
  • Patient Protection and ACA: What’s Next?, Ryan Swanson’s Annual Employment Law Update (2013 -2016)


  • Boston University School of Law
    (J.D., 2002)
  • Washington State University
    (B.A., cum laude, 1996)
Admitted to Practice
  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington
  • Montana

Hobbies & Interests

A native of Spokane, Washington, Kristin grew up under the influence of her father, at the time a small-town attorney. While she gravitated toward business and finance early on in her education, her introduction to law came in middle school.  Her dad came home one evening and read Kristin the rule on hearsay, while offering a number of examples of anticipated testimony.  Kristin was quizzed by her father on whether or not she agreed with what might or might not qualify under the rule.  Intrigued by the challenge, she never forgot that moment and would go on to bypass business school in favor of law school.

After graduation from Boston University School of Law in 2002, Kristin knew Ryan Swanson was the place for her from the moment she stepped into the lobby. She enjoys coming to work every day and is thankful to work in a fun, supportive office with so many great people. When she is not in the office, Kristin enjoys spending her time learning about new things through exploring, traveling, reading and meeting new people.  She lives in Kirkland with her husband and two kids, who are often on a soccer or baseball field nearby.