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Partner - James W. Bergenn

James W. Bergenn

Partner

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Jim Bergenn's practice is comprised of complex criminal and civil litigation, including white collar crime and government investigations, substantial personal injury and wrongful death cases, and other trials involving substantial consequences. Using his over 30 years of experience as a trial attorney and instructor, he is called upon regularly to use his trial skills, and experience with investigations and experts in diverse significant cases.

Jim handles a wide range of criminal cases, representing targets of investigations, criminal defendants, grand jury and other witnesses, and corporate and individual victims of crimes. He works in cases prosecuted by the gamut of federal, state and local authorities, such as the US Attorney’s Office, The Chief State’s Attorney’s Office, State and Federal Grand Juries, the FBI, the State Police, the SEC, the DEA, the ATF, the DOD, the IRS, the FDA, the FTC, the Office of Inspector General for various Federal Agencies, the various state regulators such as the Attorney General, the DEP, the DOH, the DMR, the DCF, the Office of Consumer Protection, and the local police.

In the Personal Injury area, he represents people in all types of personal injury cases including accidents involving motor vehicles and motorcycles, products and premises liability, construction accidents, drownings, boating accidents environmental hazards and medical malpractice. He handles sexual assault cases on behalf of both adult and children victims. The injuries in the cases he has prosecuted include death, burns, RSD, paralysis, blindness and Legionnaire’s disease. He uses technology to help jurors understand in simple terms what might otherwise be complex, including video reconstruction, videotaped depositions, and clear use of illustrations, charts, maps and highlighted documentary evidence. Most of his cases use expert witnesses, including accident reconstruction experts, and economic and medical experts to establish damages.

Distinctions

  • Connecticut Statewide Grievance Committee for New Haven Ethics Panel
  • CBA Task Force on Confidentiality and the Courts Commission
  • CBA Task Force for Legal Education
  • State of Connecticut Judicial Branch, Advisory Commission on Wrongful Convictions  
  • President's Award, Catholic University of America
  • AV Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Listed as a Connecticut Super Lawyer®: Criminal Defense: White Collar, Personal Injury Plaintiff: General, Business Litigation; 2006-2014
  • Listed as one of the Top 50 Lawyers in Connecticut by Super Lawyers® (2014)
  • Benchmark Litigation, Local Litigation Star: Wrongful Death and Personal Injury (Plaintiff) (2012-2013)
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America®: Criminal Defense: White-Collar, Criminal Defense: Non-White-Collar; 2009-2015
  • Named "Lawyer of the Year": Best Lawyers' 2014 Hartford Region Criminal Defense: Non-White-Collar
  • Chosen as a member of The Million Dollar Advocates Forum, a voluntary membership organization that admits only attorneys who have won million dollar verdicts or settlements, and of which fewer than 1% of U.S. lawyers are members

Professional Affiliations

  • American Bar Association
  • Connecticut Bar Association: Executive Committee of Criminal Justice Section; Chair of Media and Law Committee
  • Hartford County Bar Association
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Connecticut Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
  • Connecticut Trial Lawyers Association: Board of Governors

Community Involvement

  • American Constitution Society Lawyers Steering Committee
  • Town of Glastonbury: Former Conservation Commissioner
  • Town of Glastonbury: Former Chairman, Democratic Town Committee
  • Town of Glastonbury: Former Boys and girls soccer and basketball coach
  • Lector and Religious Education Instructor
  • Hartford Apartment Improvement Program, Inc.: Former Board President
  • Connecticut Friends for ALS Research
  • Covenant Preparatory School: Board of Directors

$3,500,000 Settlement for Wrongful Death Caused by Regional SWAT Team

After years of litigation, negotiated a $3.5 Million settlement, which is the largest reported Section 1983 settlement in a civil rights claim for excessive force by law enforcement in Connecticut.

$12.4 Million Judgment in Civil Rights Case

Lead trial counsel winning a $12.4 million jury verdict (plus attorney’s fees) in suit brought for developers against the Town of Branford, Connecticut. New England Estates v. Town of Branford (Complex Litigation Docket, Waterbury, September 2007). Proved that the Town’s taking of their interest in an option contract to buy a 77 acre parcel the land, for development of housing and a 9-hole golf course, resulted in a loss of over $1 million invested and lost profits in excess of $11 million. Attorney Bergenn's trial presentation included the use of digitized documents, maps, depositions, aerial photos, and damages analysis, using presentations by the client developer’s Licensed Environmental Professional and Site Plan Engineer, a developer himself, and an independent Forensic Accountant as well as adverse witness examinations of each of the relevant elected Town officials, the Town Attorney, the Town Engineer, the Town Planner, the Town Recreation Director, and the Town’s Licensed Environmental Professional. The jury credited the Developers and their witnesses over the testimony of the elected officials and their professionals.

News

November 17, 2014  Jim Bergenn and Robin Frederick Named "Top Lawyer"
October 17, 2014  CT Attorneys Recognized as 2014 Super Lawyers
September 17, 2014  Jim Bergenn Discusses the John Rowland Case on WNPR
September 3, 2014  Jim Bergenn Responds to John Rowland Trial on NBC 30
August 18, 2014  "Best Lawyers in America" Recognizes 39 Firm Attorneys
October 21, 2013  CT Attorneys Recognized as 2013 Super Lawyers
August 22, 2013  Four Attorneys Receive "Lawyer of the Year" Honors
August 15, 2013  "Best Lawyers in America" Recognizes 35 Firm Attorneys
February 6, 2013  Attorneys & Firm Recognized by "Benchmark Litigation"
October 22, 2012  "Super Lawyers" Recognizes 51 Lawyers from Firm
August 24, 2012  "Best Lawyers in America" Recognizes 37 Firm Attorneys
September 2, 2011  "Best Lawyers in America" Recognizes 30 Lawyers from the Firm
April 2011  35 Shipman & Goodwin Attorneys Named a "Top Lawyer" in Hartford County
October 28, 2010  "Super Lawyers" Recognizes 47 Lawyers From Shipman & Goodwin LLP
September 23, 2010  "Best Lawyers In America" Recognizes 27 Lawyers from Shipman & Goodwin LLP
June 28, 2010  Bike Crash Case Has Lessons For Reluctant Lawyers
June 27, 2010  Stan Simpson Show: Perez Verdict
October 27, 2009  Shipman & Goodwin Attorneys Named 2010 Connecticut Super Lawyers & Rising Stars
August 10, 2009  25 Shipman & Goodwin Attorneys Recognized as "2010 Best Lawyers in America"
March 2, 2009  Shipman & Goodwin Attorneys Named 2009 Connecticut Super Lawyers & Rising Stars and Featured in Connecticut Magazine
January 15, 2009  Shipman & Goodwin Attorneys James W. Bergenn and William J. Ronalter Named to Million Dollar Advocates Forum
December 4, 2008  Shipman & Goodwin Attorneys Recognized as "2009 Best Lawyers in America"
November 7, 2008  Shipman & Goodwin Attorneys Named 2009 Connecticut Super Lawyers & Rising Stars
August 22, 2008  New England Estates v. Town of Branford case - Final brief filed
April 25, 2008  Attorneys Named By Super Lawyers®
September 11, 2007  New England Estates v. Town of Branford Litigation
February 1, 2006  Thirty-Five Shipman & Goodwin Attorneys Named Connecticut "Super Lawyers®"
James W. Bergenn Best Lawyers Lawyer of the Year 2014 Criminal Defense Non White Collar Hartford                      

Practice Areas

Education

  • Columbia University School of Law, J.D., 1979
  • Catholic University of America, B.A., 1976, summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa

Bar Admissions

  • Connecticut

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of CA
  • U.S. District Court, District of ME
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of IL
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of IL
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of AL
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of NY
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of NY
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