Lenell Nussbaum

Lenell Nussbaum

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Criminal Defense Attorney in Seattle, WA

Law Office of Lenell Nussbaum
 | 2125 Western Avenue, Suite 330
Seattle, WA 98121
Phone: 206-728-0996
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2003 - 2017
Licensed Since: 1980
Practice Areas:
  • Criminal Defense (50%),
  • Appellate (40%),
  • Criminal Defense: White Collar (10%)
Attorney Profile

Lenell Nussbaum represents individuals in criminal investigations, trials, appeals, and post-conviction relief in state and federal courts. She is counsel of record in more than 70 published appellate opinions. The Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers presented her with its William O. Douglas Award for extraordinary courage and dedication to the practice of criminal law. She is a Fellow of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, a past president of WACDL, and a founding member of the Washington Appellate Lawyers Association.  She serves as a Justice on the Suquamish Tribal Appeals Court and served as Commissioner on the Washington Sentencing Guidelines Commission, 2002-2014.  She has testified before the Washington State Legislature and frequently teaches legal seminars on criminal law topics.  She taught about the United States Constitution at Petrozavodsk State University in Russia.

Ms. Nussbaum was counsel in the first appellate case in the United States to recognize battered child syndrome for purposes of self-defense.  She continues doing significant work developing the law of self-defense and histories of abuse.  She represented an AIDS patient to obtain clemency, converting a prison sentence to an AIDS hospice.  She successfully represented a plastic surgeon accused of raping a patient.  She obtained a reversal of a manslaughter conviction for an elderly woman accused of killing her husband where the court excluded psychological evidence of past abuse.  

Ms. Nussbaum graduated in 1980 from the University of Michigan Law School.

Certificates and Credentials

About Lenell Nussbaum

Admitted: 1980, Washington

Professional Webpage: http://www.nussbaumdefense.com/about.html

Honors and Awards:

  • Honored for service as counsel in Washington Supreme Court seeking relief for juvenile sentenced to mandatory life without possibility of parole.  In re PRP of McNeil, 181 Wn.2d 582, 334 P.3d 548 (2014), Pro Bono Honoree, Columbia Legal Services, 2014
  • Inducted into American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, Fellow, American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, 2013

Verdicts and Settlements:

  • State v. Thomas, Court of Appeals No. 70438-9-I:  Reversal of conviction for second degree assault with a firearm, 2015
  • Investigation of K.C.:  no charge filed, full custody returned to client after investigation of infant's broken bone; expert assessments showed infant's special needs could cause fracture, 2014
  • Investigation of A.K.:  no charge filed, full custody of child returned to client after criminal and CPS investigation into allegations that client's fiance molested client's son, 2014
  • State v. M.P.:  Superior Court granted final discharge from conditional release after being found not guilty by reason of insanity ten years earlier on two counts of attempted murder, 2014
  • State v. Gensitskiy, Court of Appeals No. 71640-9-I:  reversed six counts of child molestation, rape of a child, and incest, 2014
  • State v. Green, 182 Wn. App. 133, 328 P.3d 988 (2014):  reversed manslaughter conviction for client accused of killing husband where court excluded expert evidence of history of abuse, 2014
  • State v. Hudson, Court of Appeals No. 68807-3-I:  reversed conviction for witness tampering, 2014
  • State v. Hudson, Court of Appeals No. 70147-9-I:  reversed convictions for residential burglary, attempting to elude, and violations of no-contact orders., 2014
  • Investigation of H.G.:  no charge filed after investigation of alleged embezzlement; provided prosecutor documentation contradicting complaining witness's version of business expenditures, 2013

Representative Clients:

  • I represent individuals accused or convicted of crimes from all walks of life, for example:  doctor, mechanic, lawyer, judge, engineer, inventor, truck driver, restaurant manager, chemical engineer, software engineer, police officer's child, children who have no career yet, nurse, retired bookkeeper, retired accountant.

Educational Background:

  • B.A., Indiana University:  double major in Russian Language and Literature and Political Science, 1977
Office Location for Lenell Nussbaum

2125 Western Avenue
Suite 330
Seattle, WA 98121


Lenell Nussbaum:

Last Updated: 1/18/2017

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