James B. Barton

Top rated business litigation attorney in Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Barton Legal S.C.
James B. Barton
Barton Legal S.C.

Practice Areas: Business litigation, Alternative dispute resolution, Appellate; view more

Licensed in Wisconsin since: 2008

Education: Marquette University Law School

Selected to Super Lawyers: 2020 - 2022 Selected to Rising Stars: 2013 - 2019
Free Consultation

Barton Legal S.C.

313 N Plankinton Ave
Suite 207
Milwaukee, WI 53203 Visit website


Attorney James B. Barton is the founder and owner of Barton Legal S.C. in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Nationally recognized as among the best trial attorneys in the country and an emerging leader in his field, Mr. Barton has more than 12 years of total legal experience, and he provides unmatched counsel and support to a diverse range of clients throughout the greater Milwaukee metro area and all across the state who are dealing with complex commercial disputes.

Along with providing invaluable representation and trial advocacy during commercial litigation, Mr. Barton also delivers invaluable advice to his clients to help them make the best-informed decisions and remain in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations that govern their industries. At all turns, he maintains an unwavering focus on protecting their rights and interests while helping them achieve the favorable outcomes they expect and deserve as efficiently and cost-effectively as possible.

Mr. Barton has become known for his no-nonsense approach along with his outstanding problem-solving skills and uncommon legal and business acumen. His high level of professionalism and service has earned him many top rankings and endorsements from his peers, including consistent recognition from The Best Lawyers in America. He has also received numerous testimonials and referrals from his satisfied clients, and he has gained a reputation as a formidable opponent in court.

A 2005 graduate of the University of Colorado, Boulder, Mr. Barton obtained his Juris Doctor from Marquette University Law School in 2008. He holds his license to practice in Wisconsin and Colorado, and he is admitted to practice before various U.S. District Courts in Colorado, Wisconsin, Ohio and Illinois. He is also admitted to practice before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th and 10th Circuits and the U.S. Supreme Court.

Practice areas

Business litigation, Alternative dispute resolution, Appellate, Civil litigation: plaintiff

Focus areas


  • 70% Business litigation
  • 10% Alternative dispute resolution
  • 10% Appellate
  • 10% Civil litigation: plaintiff

First Admitted: 2008, Wisconsin

Professional Webpage: https://www.bartonlegalsc.com/attorneys/james-barton/

Scholarly Lectures/Writings:
  • Co-Author, The Significance of Travelers v. Bailey, Product Liability, Law360, www.michaelbest.com/files/Publication/6706f8c6-fe5f-4028-9a92-a9b8411a024c/Presentation/PublicationAttachment/aceb8244-fd2e-4a7d-a05b-ae3da7ece9b0/Reprint_Law360%20-%20Significance%20Of%20Travelers%20V.%20Bailey%20-%20May%202009%20(PEB).pdf, 2009
  • Co-author, Legal Malpractice Law 50 State Survey (Wisconsin), American Bar Association, Professional Liability, 2009
Pro bono/Community Service:
  • Marquette University Law School's Pro Bono Award, 2008
  • Selected for inclusion by The Best Lawyers in America for his work in commercial litigation (2019-2020)
  • Recognized as a “Rising Star” in Business Litigation by Wisconsin Super Lawyers (2013 – 2019)
  • Best Law Firms, U.S. News & World Report, Barton Legal received a regional tier two ranking for Commercial Litigation in the Milwaukee metro area, 2020 - 2021
Bar/Professional Activity:
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • Wisconsin
  • American Bar Association
  • Colorado
  • Milwaukee Bar Association
Educational Background:
  • University of Colorado, B.S. (Finance and Economics), 2005
Other Outstanding Achievements:
  • Nominated to the Best Lawyers In America for Mr. Barton's work in commercial litigation., 2022
  • Barton Legal S.C. was nominated as one of the U.S. New and World Report's "Best Law Firms" in regional rankings for commercial litigation. , 2022
  • Nominated to the Best Lawyers In America for Mr. Barton's work in commercial litigation., 2021
  • Nominated to the Best Lawyers In America for Mr. Barton's work in commercial litigation., 2019
  • Barton Legal S.C. was nominated as one of the U.S. New and World Report's "Best Law Firms" in regional rankings for commercial litigation. , 2021
  • Barton Legal S.C. was nominated as one of the U.S. New and World Report's "Best Law Firms" in regional rankings for commercial litigation. , 2020
  • Nominated to the Best Lawyers In America for Mr. Barton's work in commercial litigation., 2020
  • Lead counsel for a putative class of Kia and Hyundai owners/lessees who have had their vehicles stolen because of Defendants' deficient design that makes them easy to steal. See Marvin et al. v. Kia America, Inc. et al., Case No. 2:21-CV-01146-PP (E.D. Wis.) More information about the suit can be learned about here: www.dontstealmykia.com.  , 2022
  • Lead counsel for the plaintiff-seller of an outdoor goods company against the defendant-buyer and its owner, which arose following the $2MM sale of the company in connection with the defendant's performance of the asset purchase agreement. See BDH, LLC v. Outdoor Product Innovations, Inc., Case No. 2:21-CV-007700 (E.D. Wis.)  , 2022
  • United States v. Cerna et al., 676 F.3d 605 (7th Cir. 2012)
  • Sonic Foundry, Inc. v. Astute Tech., LLC, Case No. 13-CV-00087, 2013 WL 6148111 (W.D. Wis. Nov. 22, 2013)
  • Abrica v. Grob, Inc., Case No. 2:10-cv-03424 (C.D. Cal.)
  • Experian Info. Sols., Inc. v. Carfax, Inc., No. 11 CV 08927 (N.D. Ill.)
  • Centec, LLC v. Plutshack, Case No. 15-C-1401, 2016 WL 3645184 (E.D. Wis. June 30, 2016)
  • Alsum et al. v. Didion Inc., Case No. 2012-CV-197 (Columbia County Circuit Court)
  • Waterworks Company, Inc., f/k/a Mainline Supply of Florida, LLC v. Masci Corporation, et al., Case No. 2012-31274-CICI (Volusia County Circuit Court)
  • Lead counsel for a veterinary clinic asserting claims against multiple defendants for defamation, conspiracy to assassinate the clinic's reputation, and unauthorized use of the clinic's name, which stem from a coordinated attempt to depress the clinic's Google rating through a series of false and negative reviews. See Lakeview Animal Clinic, S.C. v. Gnatzig et al., 19-CV-001418 (Waukesha County Circuit Ct.) The lawsuit was reported in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Lakeview Lawsuit, 2019
  • Lead counsel for the plaintiff in a multi-million-dollar shareholder oppression dispute concerning his interest in one of the country’s largest independent insurance agencies; after eighteen months of litigation and a series of favorable depositions, Mr. Barton defeated defendants’ case-dispositive motion, which sought dismissal of the entire suit;  the case settled weeks later under terms extremely favorable to his clients favor. See McClone v. Brenn et al., Case No. 2018-CV-000203 (Winnebago County Circuit Court), 2019
  • Lead counsel for a North American machine tool importer/distributor in connection with a multi-million-dollar dispute against a Korean manufacturer, its subsidiary, and their agents for breaches of the Wisconsin Fair Dealership Law and related business torts; Mr. Barton successfully enjoined defendant’s parallel suit from proceeding before the Korean Commercial Arbitration Board in Seoul, Korea. See Dynamic Intl of Wisconsin, Inc. v. SMEC CO., LTD., Case No. 2:18-cv-00582 (E.D. Wis.) , 2020
  • Lead counsel for a French client seeking recognition of a French judgment that the client obtained after a protracted, six-year lawsuit in France; obtained summary judgment to recognize the French Judgment to allow Mr. Barton's client to initiate collection activities in the United States. See Societe D’Amenagement etde Gestion de L’Abri Nautique v. Marine Travelift, Inc., Case No. 16-CV-785 (E.D. Wis.). Note: this was case was nominated as one of the "Top Nine" federal court decisions interpreting Wisconsin law in the December 2018 Edition of the Wisconsin Lawyer, 2018
  • Lead counsel for a national transportation company in a contract dispute venued in the Northern District of Ohio; after obtaining dismissal of many of the plaintiff's claims on a motion to dismiss, the matter was settled out of court under extremely favorable terms to the client. Amrate, LLC v. AIM Brokerage Services, LLC et al., Case No. 1:17-cv-00676-SO (N.D. Ohio), 2018
  • Represented a Native American Tribe and its tribal casino in litigation stemming from a bond transaction in which more than $90,000,000 was in dispute. The case remained pending for eight-years in multiple fora, including the Western District of Wisconsin (twice), the Waukesha County Circuit Court, the Lac Du Flambeau Tribal Court, and the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals (twice). Mr. Barton was a member of the trial team and successfully argued numerous motions in limine. The case settled during a seven-week jury trial under confidential terms that were extremely favorable to his client. See Saybrook Tax Exempt Investors LLC et al. vs. Lac Du Flambeau Band Of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians et al., Waukesha County Circuit, 2017
  • Obtained total defense verdict in commercial trial involving commodities futures contracts venued in Columbia County, Wisconsin, 2013
  • Successfully defended one of the Unnamed Movants in the State’s John Doe Investigation that was recently halted and declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court of Wisconsin, and which subsequently resulted in substantial modifications to Wisconsin's John Doe statutory scheme. See State ex rel. Two Unnamed Petitioners v. Peterson, 2015 WI 85, 363 Wis. 2d 1, 866 N.W.2d 165, decision clarified on denial of reconsideration sub nom. State ex rel. Three Unnamed Petitioners v. Peterson, 2015 WI 103, 365 Wis. 2d 351, 875 N.W.2d 49, 2015
  • Obtained total defense verdict for a manufacturing client in a complex construction dispute venued in Volusia County, Florida, 2014
  • Lead counsel for the primary defendant in a multi-million dollar copyright infringement action pending in the Western District of Wisconsin; obtained summary judgment in defendant’s favor on plaintiffs’ copyright claims along with a presumptive award of attorneys' fees under the Copyright Act; the case settled out of court shortly thereafter. See Boehm et al. v. Legends of the Field, LLC et al., Case No. 15-cv-00683 (JDP) (W.D. Wis., 2018), 2017
  • Successfully represented a MLB All-Star in a breach of contract and defamation case venued in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin; Mr. Barton briefed and argued the motion that resulted in the dismissal of all claims against his client, which was then affirmed on appeal. See Sasson v. Braun, 2015 WI App 58, 2, 364 Wis. 2d 527, 868 N.W.2d 199, review denied, 2016 WI 2, 2, 365 Wis. 2d 743, 872 N.W.2d 669, 2014
  • Obtained complete dismissal of a patent infringement lawsuit venued in the Western District of Wisconsin, 2013
  • Successfully represented a plaintiff-respondent on appeal to sustain a $500,000 jury verdict rendered in connection with his business partner's breach of fiduciary duty; the verdict was affirmed by the Wisconsin Supreme Court. See Smith v. Kleynerman, 2017 WI 22, N.W.2d, 2017
Industry Groups:
  • Alcohol Distribution
  • Manufacturing
  • Product Liability
  • Professional Liability

Office location for James B. Barton

313 N Plankinton Ave
Suite 207
Milwaukee, WI 53203

Phone: 414-488-6535


3 Years Super Lawyers
7 Years Rising Stars
  • Super Lawyers: 2020 - 2022
  • Rising Stars: 2013 - 2019

Additional sources of information about James B. Barton

Attorney resources for James B. Barton

Page Generated: 0.064872026443481 sec