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Richard H. (Rick) Herold


Spencer Fane attorney Rick Herold

T 602.333.5453
F 602.333.5431

Rick Herold is a litigator and trial attorney who works closely with clients to resolve complex commercial disputes across a range of industries, including financial services, mining, and real estate development, seeking to efficiently resolve disputes not perpetuate them.  Rick has almost 30 years of experience and uses a practical and tailored approach to problem-solving for banks, other creditors, employers and property owners, often in expedited proceedings to appoint a receiver, enjoin misconduct, address real property rights, or recover confidential information or trade secrets removed from the workplace.

His work regularly leads to early settlements, targeted summary judgment results to avoid trial, and, when necessary, successful jury trial results. Representing plaintiffs and defendants equally, he has frequently been successful in recovering counsel fees and costs for his clients. Service and availability are always a high priority for Rick.

Highlights of Rick’s experience include:

  • Successfully defended and defeated an alleged $75,000,000 trade secrets claim in the automobile repossession business.
  • After conducting depositions in defense of a trade secrets claim, persuaded adverse counsel to sign a release to abandon litigation of an alleged $30,000,000 claim asserted against telecommunications client.
  • Achieved successful trial, summary judgment, and other favorable results (including recovery of counsel fees) for multiple banks on injunctive relief, commercial receivership, loan enforcement, fraudulent transfer and stay relief proceedings in state and bankruptcy court on loans ranging from $2,000,000 to $75,000,000.
  • Obtained a summary judgment ruling for a Fortune 500 mining concern, affirmed twice on appeal, along with an award of counsel fees, in the prosecution of a quiet title claim (and related defense of an adverse possession claim asserting ownership of more than 800 acres).
  • Resolved numerous condemnation matters for property owners including one case involving a $100,000,000 condemnation of a utility.
  • Successfully defended an Arizona manufacturer against a $25,000,000 claim filed in California state court, allegedly arising from a defective prototype to be used for national defense purposes, resolving it days before a nine-day trial for only $15,000.
  • After depositions, succeeded in persuading claimant to release $5,000,000 claim filed against a national commercial real estate brokerage firm two days before the commencement of an eight-day AAA arbitration.
  • Prosecuted trade secrets rights and remedies for multiple clients resulting in the return of confidential and proprietary materials as well as trade secrets.

Presentations and Publications

  • Co-Presenter, “Taking Squatters to the Cleaners for Using Your Dirt: Best Practices to Avoid and Defeat Adverse Possession Claims,” State Bar of Arizona, Real Property Section, Tucson, AZ (March 8, 2017)
  • Presenter, “Litigating Privacy, Data Breach and Cybersecurity Issues in 2014: The SEC View on Disclosure Obligations,” American Bar Association Section of Litigation Annual Conference (April 2014)
  • Risk Management Presentation to Real Estate Agents and Title Agents (October 15, 2013)
  • Presenter, “From the Front Line – Legal Hazards and Issues of Interest to Banks and Their Directors,” Arizona Bankers Association: Directors and Leadership College (November 2012)
  • Co-Presenter, “Real Property Management and Leasing in the Wake of a Trustee’s Sale,” MCBA Real Estate Series CLE Presentation (February 2012)
  • Panelist, “Current Developments in Ethical Issues,” State Bar of Arizona’s Ethics Committee-Hosted Seminar addressing Ethical Rule 4.4 and related opinions issued by the State Bar of Arizona’s Ethics Committee and the American Bar Association regarding the obligations of counsel when privileged communications are inadvertently disclosed (December 14, 2011)
  • Presenter, “Managing Your Practice,” 2010 State Bar of Arizona Annual Convention, Glendale, AZ (June 2010)

Community Involvement

  • Southwest Behavioral & Health Services, Board of Directors (2017-present)
  • Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, Arizona Affiliate, Board of Directors (2014-2016)
  • Town of Paradise Valley, Arizona, Personnel Appeals Board (2015-present), Chair (2016-2018), Public Safety Personnel Retirement Board (2013-2015)
  • Emory College Alumni, Board of Directors (2012-2015)
  • Brophy College Preparatory, Dad’s Club (2010-2014)
  • Phoenix Country Day School, Dad’s Club (2013-2017)
  • Valley of the Sun United Way, Resource Management Committee (2011-2014), “Destination Graduation” Mentor at Central High School (2012-2013 Academic Year)
  • Mary’s Food Bank, Volunteer (2011-2016)
  • Economic Club of Phoenix (September 2011-2017)
  • Phoenix Chamber of Commerce (2011-2017)
  • State Bar of Arizona’s “Operation Good Neighbor” Program (aiding displaced victims of Hurricane Katrina), Volunteer, 2009
  • Junior Achievement of the Central District of Arizona, Board of Directors (2006-2008)
  • United Way of Somerset County, New Jersey, General Counsel and Trustee (1993-1996)


  • National Association of Corporate Directors (2020-present)
  • American Bar Association
    • Commercial & Business Litigation Committee (2013-2017)
    • Forum on Franchising (2016-2017)
    • Ethics Subcommittee, Co-Chair (2013-2014)
    • Trade Secrets Litigation Subcommittee, Co-Chair (2013-2014)
  • Judge Pro Tempore, Maricopa County Superior Court (2004-2007, 2014-2015, 2016-2017)
  • State Bar of Arizona
    • Fee Arbitration Committee, Member (2005-2012), Chair (2008-2011)
    • Ethics Committee (2010-2016)
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation (2016-present)
  • Urban Land Institute (2013-2017)
  • New Jersey Supreme Court, District XIII, Ethics Committee appointment (1996-1997)


  • The Best Lawyers in America, Commercial Litigation, 2016-2022
  • Southwest Super Lawyers®, Business Litigation and Bank Litigation
  • Ranking Arizona: The Best of Arizona Attorneys, Banking

Contact Rick Herold at 602.333.5453 or rherold@spencerfane.com.