Jim is an experienced litigator and advisor well versed in the law of lawyering. He has built his successful private practice on the foundation of skills honed in public service, from his early career as a legal aid lawyer to his nearly 15 years as a litigation attorney, and later Senior Counsel, at the Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission. There, he gained significant experience in successfully litigating before the Hearing Board of the ARDC, in motion practice before the Illinois Supreme Court, and in researching and analyzing complex issues involving attorney conduct.
Jim’s work is characterized by incisive analysis, careful preparation, and creative trial management. He is a skilled advocate for lawyers who encounter ethical issues, whether or not they arise in the context of a disciplinary inquiry. He provides his clients with thoughtful advice about professional problems and assistance in creating mindful professional practices. He has also been highly successful in representing lawyers in disciplinary matters, including at trial before the Hearing Board, and in appellate proceedings before the Review Board and the Illinois Supreme Court. In several cases, he has achieved the dismissal of disciplinary charges and complaints against his clients.
In addition, Jim has extensive experience in successfully representing clients seeking admission to the bar in proceedings before the Committee on Character and Fitness. He has also provided effective consultations and opinion letters on a wide range of ethical and professional issues, including by assisting lawyers and law-related businesses in developing business plans and strategies that are consistent with the Rules of Professional Conduct. He is available to provide expert opinion and testimony concerning the application of the Rules of Professional Conduct.
Jim is a member of the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers, the Illinois State Bar Association, and the ABA Center for Professional Responsibility. He has created many MCLE- and PMCLE-accredited materials and presentations on topics pertaining to professionalism and ethics, including the intersection of ethics and attorney malpractice; ethical concerns arising in intellectual property law, particularly for in-house counsel; and the ethics of e-discovery. He has discussed those topics, and many more, before groups of all sizes in a knowledgeable and engaging way. Along with Mary Robinson and Sari Montgomery, he is a co-author of Chapter 13, “Disciplinary Liability,” Attorneys’ Legal Liability (IICLE®, 2018) and Chapter 9, “Ethical Considerations in Jury Trials,” Inside & Outside the Jury Box (IICLE®, 2018). Jim is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and Loyola University Chicago School of Law.
- As Senior Counsel at ARDC, conducted hundreds of investigations and prosecuted more than 70 formal disciplinary cases
- As defense lawyer, obtained dismissals of all charges in 3 distinct cases after fully contested hearings
- Accomplished presenter of legal ethics and professionalism MCLE- and PMCLE-accredited materials
- Co-author, Chapter 13, “Disciplinary Liability,” Attorneys’ Legal Liability (IICLE®, 2018)
- Co-author, Chapter 9, “Ethical Considerations in Jury Trials,” Inside & Outside the Jury Box (IICLE®, 2018)
- Successfully represented clients in numerous disciplinary investigations through closure
- Achieved full and partial dismissals of all disciplinary charges in seven fully contested ARDC cases
- Represented applicants to the Illinois Bar in achieving certification for admission
- Provided well-researched, concise ethics opinion letters and consultations on topics including structuring of law-related businesses, sale of a practice, and business relationships with people or entities outside the practice of law
- Co-authored chapters in two IICLE® publications
- Created and presented numerous CLE- and PMCLE-accredited seminars and panel discussions
- Appeared twice on Technically Legal podcast to discuss emerging ethics issues pertaining to innovations in legal tech