University of Minnesota Law School, J.D., 1984, Magna Cum Laude

University of Chicago, B.A., 1981, With Honors

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Illinois
  • Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court District of Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 5th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 7th Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit
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Jim is chair of the firm's Antitrust, Franchise and Distribution practice group, is a former director of the firm, and is in charge of Briggs and Morgan’s pro bono programs. Jim concentrates his litigation and counseling practice principally in the areas of: 

  • Antitrust law
  • Franchise law
  • Dealer/distribution/sales representative law

Jim has more than 30 years of experience in his practice areas, along with a background in economics.

He has been involved in a number of large antitrust cases ranging from price fixing to group boycotts to predatory pricing claims and has extensive experience in Section Two attempts to monopolize claims based upon predatory hiring of sales force. Jim counsels a number of clients on a variety of antitrust issues, including bundled rebate plans, price discrimination and other pricing practices. He has handled, from both a plaintiff and defense side, numerous cases involving enforcement of covenants not to compete. He has handled DOJ Antitrust investigations, state attorney general investigations and FTC Hart-Scott-Rodino reviews. Jim has first chaired federal jury trials in antitrust and other commercial cases, has handled numerous arbitrations, and has argued appeals in the Seventh and Eighth Circuits, as well as in several state appellate courts.

Approximately half of Jim's practice centers on franchise/dealer litigation where he represents franchisors in disputes with franchisees and manufacturers in disputes with dealers, distributors or sales representatives. On a national scope, he has handled cases venued in Florida, North Carolina, Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, Missouri, Kentucky, Texas, Maine, Colorado, New Jersey and Ohio, as well as Minnesota. Jim counsels clients on matters involving the Minnesota Franchise Act, the Minnesota Sales Representative Act, the Minnesota Heavy and Utility Equipment Manufacturers and Dealers Act, the Minnesota Agricultural Equipment Dealership Act, the Wisconsin Fair Dealership law, a number of state motor vehicle and power sport dealer's acts, and other industry specific dealer and distribution laws. He has extensive experience in a variety of industries, including school graduation products and yearbooks, ID card printers and card issuance solutions, biometric recognition solutions, medical devices, beverage bottlers, distributors and manufacturers, powersport vehicles, automobiles, motorcycles, motorcycle trikes, recreational powerboats, trailer trucks, ATVs and other recreational vehicles, consumer food products and various franchise systems ranging from retail diet centers to convenience food stores, and drive through hamburger restaurants. He counsels and represents automobile dealers under the Minnesota Motor Vehicle Dealers Act. Jim has extensive experience enforcing arbitration clauses in franchise, dealer and distribution agreements.

Jim is a Rule 114 Certified Neutral who handles a number of mediations through the Hennepin County District Court Pro Bono Mediation Program. Jim is a member of the Commercial Panel of the American Arbitration Association's National Roster of Arbitrators.

Jim has been an adjunct professor at Hamline University School of Law, where he designed curriculum specific to franchise law and taught franchise law. He is admitted to practice in Illinois, Minnesota and the federal districts of Minnesota and Northern Illinois, as well as the 5th, 7th and 8th Circuit Courts of Appeal. He is a member of the American Bar Association, the ABA Antitrust Section and the ABA Forum on Franchising. Jim is listed in The Best Lawyers in America for his work in the area of Franchise Law and Litigation - Antitrust, and he is consistently listed in Minnesota Super Lawyers.

Jim is past president of the Saint Paul Jaycees and also was legal counsel secretary and board member of the St. Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation from 1999 through 2002. He was a member and chair of the Briggs Recruiting Committee for eight years and the Associate Training and Evaluation Committee for five years, and also served as secretary of the board. Currently Jim is Briggs and Morgan’s pro bono coordinator and chair of the pro bono committee. In March 2016, Jim received the Hennepin County Bar Association's Pro Bono Publico Distinguished Service Award for "career-long work on behalf of the community." Additionally, he is a board member of Call for Justice, LLC and is a member of the MSBA Legal Assistance to the Disadvantaged (LAD) Committee, serving on its Diversity Sub-Committee. Jim served as Antitrust Counsel to the Saint Paul Chamber of Commerce Pioneer Press Task Force. He is a council member and treasurer of the MSBA Antitrust Law Section. Jim also serves on the Antitrust Law Seminars Advisory Board for Strafford.

Jim received his B.A. with honors in economics from the University of Chicago. He received his law degree magna cum laude from the University of Minnesota and was elected to Order of the Coif. He served as articles editor for the Minnesota Law Review. Jim practiced at Winston & Strawn in Chicago before joining Briggs in 1987.

Honors & Awards

  • The Best Lawyers in America
  • Minnesota Super Lawyers
  • 2016 Hennepin County Bar Assocation Pro Bono Publico Distinguished Service Award
  • North Star Lawyer, Minnesota State Bar Association


Professional Affiliations

Briggs and Morgan

  • Committee on Recruiting, Chairperson, 1995-1998
  • Pro Bono Committee, Chairperson, 2010-Present
  • Association Training and Evaluation Committee, Chairperson, 1999-2004

St. Paul Area Jaycees

  • Member
  • Former President, 1993-1994

National Roster of Arbitrators, AAA Commercial Panel

American Bar Association, Member, Section of Antitrust

American Bar Association, Member, Forum on Franchising

Hamline Law School, Developed and Taught Semester-Long Franchise Course, 1999, 2005

St. Paul Festival and Heritage Foundation

  • Legal Counsel
  • Secretary
  • Board Member, 1999-2002

St. Paul Jaycees Charitable Foundation, Trustee

Minnesota State Bar Association

  • Antitrust Law Section, Council Member, Treasurer
  • Legal Assistance to the Disadvantaged Committee, 2010-Present

Call for Justice, LLC, Board Member, 2014

VLN Hennepin County Civil Counsel Pro Bono Project, Member, 2012-Present

VLN Benefactors Board, Member, 2013-Present

Saint Paul Chamber of Commerce, Antitrust Counsel, Pioneer Press Task Force

Strafford, Board Member, Antitrust Law Seminars Advisory Board, 2010-Present