Philip J. Seaver-Hall

Associate

Philip focuses his practice on appellate, constitutional, commercial, and civil-rights litigation. He routinely advises school districts throughout Pennsylvania on complicated civil-rights issues including freedom of speech, freedom of religion, LGBTQ+ rights, and student privacy. Philip is a member of the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE)'s Legal Network, a nonpartisan group of attorneys who litigate cases in defense of the fundamental rights of expression, association, and conscience. He has argued before the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, the Superior Court of Pennsylvania, and numerous trial courts throughout Pennsylvania.

Philip graduated with Woolsack Society honors from Pennsylvania State University’s Dickinson School of Law, where he now serves as Adjunct Professor of Law. Before law school, Philip was an accomplished classical musician who routinely worked with Grammy Award- and Juno Award-winning musicians. He has performed in hundreds of concerts throughout the United States—including at Carnegie Hall—as well as in Canada and Italy.

Philip’s mission is to advise and advocate for his clients expertly, efficiently, ethically, and empathetically in all stages of a case, from pretrial to appeal.

Practice Areas

  • Pennsylvania State University, Dickinson School of Law, J.D.
    Certificate in Litigation and Dispute Resolution; Woolsack Honor Society; The Order of Barristers; Associate Editor of Jus Gentium, The Journal of International Legal History; Moot Court Board; Class Representative for Women's Law Caucus; Research Assistant to Emeritus Dean Gary S. Gildin (specialization: qualified immunity from constitutional tort liability)
  • Mercer University, B.A.
    cum laude; McDuffie Center Presidential Scholar; National Political Science Honor Society; Vice President of Women's and Gender Studies Honor Society; Vice President of Pre-Law Society; Mock Trial Team; Principal Violist with Mercer University Orchestra
  • Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • Obtained $5.3 million judgment in favor of corporate client in commercial breach-of-contract action
  • Obtained unanimous reversal from the Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court in favor of landowner client
  • Obtained dismissal, with prejudice, of key claims in federal non-competition/non-solicitation lawsuit against franchisee client
  • Argued before Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court in governmental easement dispute
  • Obtained dismissal, with prejudice, of Sunshine Act lawsuit against municipal client
  • Obtained dismissal, with prejudice, of lawsuit seeking writ of mandamus against township client
  • Obtained compulsory nonsuit for municipal client in eminent-domain trial
  • Obtained dismissal with prejudice of two anti-mask lawsuits seeking judicial removal of Millcreek and North East School Boards
  • Litigated complex federal appeal concerning alleged contempt of court in client’s environmental case
  • Obtained judgment in favor of landlord client following over $20,000 worth of property damage to rental unit caused by tenant
  • Obtained favorable settlement after resting case in federal civil-rights trial on behalf of prisoner
  • Obtained discovery sanctions against government-affiliated defendants for the government’s destruction of relevant evidence
  • Obtained favorable settlement on behalf of homeowner in lawsuit against construction contractor
  • Obtained policy-limit indemnity from insurance company on behalf of allegedly negligent driver
  • Briefed and argued dispositive motions in state and federal court
  • Researched and located caselaw that, upon presentation to defense counsel, led to seven-figure settlement offer to client
  • Briefed and argued constitutional and statutory issues of first impression before Pennsylvania Court of Common Pleas
Super Lawyers® Rising Stars PJSH
  • CALI Excellence for the Future Awards (Federal Courts; First Amendment; Sales Law; Wills, Trusts & Estates; Conflict of Laws; Legal Argument & Factual Persuasion), Penn State University Dickinson School of Law
  • "Best Brief" Award and Semifinalist - ABA National Appellate Advocacy Competition, Brooklyn Regional
  • #1 Best Defense Advocate Award - Intra-School Mock Trial Competition, Penn State University Dickinson School of Law

Professional Affiliations

  • Erie County Bar Association, Local Rules Subcommittee Member (2022-present); Judicial Evaluation Committee (2022-present)
  • Pennsylvania Bar Association, Legal Academics Committee Member (2021-present); Bar Admission Issues Subcommittee Member (2023-present); Young Lawyers' Division: Liaison to Unauthorized Practice of Law Committee Member (2023-present) and Liaison to Legal Academics Committee Member (2023-present)
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • Bar Association of the Third Federal Circuit, Member

Community and Professional Service

  • Pennsylvania State University’s Dickinson School of Law, Adjunct Professor of Law - Advanced Legal Writing, Spring 2025
  • Erie Philharmonic, Board of Governors (2022-present) and Vice Chair (2023-present)
  • Lake Erie Arboretum at Frontier Park (LEAF), Board Member (2022-present)
  • Dickinson Law Moot Court Team, Coach (2022-present)

Speaking Engagements

  • Firm's Annual Municipal Law Symposium, 2024: "Tell It To the Judge" panelist
  • Firm's Annual Municipal Law Symposium, 2023: (1) Legal Tips Panel, tips on multi-district litigation (MDL) and (2) Special Education topic: Navigating Manifestation Determinations and Reducing Liability Through Regulatory Compliance

Articles and Publications

External Publications