Photo of James W. Shelson

Jim Shelson represents clients in a range of commercial litigation matters. His litigation experience includes toxic torts, products liability, business torts and commercial disputes, consumer finance and lender liability, coverage disputes and bad-faith claims. He has represented clients from many industries, including chemical and product manufacturing, aviation, agriculture, insurers, banks and other financial institutions and lenders, telecommunications companies, automotive suppliers and casinos.

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Jim Shelson represents clients in a range of commercial litigation matters. His litigation experience includes toxic torts, products liability, business torts and commercial disputes, consumer finance and lender liability, coverage disputes and bad-faith claims. He has represented clients from many industries, including chemical and product manufacturing, aviation, agriculture, insurers, banks and other financial institutions and lenders, telecommunications companies, automotive suppliers and casinos.

Jim’s practice often involves technical expert evidence in the areas of toxicology, epidemiology, medical science and causation in tort cases, as well as complex business and financial analysis in commercial disputes. He is also experienced in the use of alternative dispute resolution techniques to resolve claims.

Jim is licensed in Mississippi and Alabama. His jury trial and appellate experience includes both state and federal courts. His state court trial experience includes both the circuit and chancery courts of Mississippi. He is the author of Mississippi Chancery Practice.

Jim is the firm's Practice Coordinator for the general litigation group in the Jackson office. He is a member of the International Association of Defense Counsel, an invitation-only association of corporate and defense attorneys, where he serves as chairman of the Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee.

Experience

  • Represented clients in toxic and environmental tort cases involving more than 4,000 plaintiffs.
  • Directed verdict for waste management company in business tort case alleging tortious interference with contract.
  • Represented lender in several consumer finance cases involving more than 1,000 plaintiffs.
  • Jury verdict for bank in three-week lender liability case.
  • Jury verdict for drug store chain in case alleging client failed to protect customer’s personal identifying information.
  • Jury verdict for stock brokerage firm accused of fraud.
  • Verdict for bank in case alleging improper wire transfer of funds.
  • Verdict for company in contract dispute involving ownership of stock.
  • Represented agriculture company in an arbitration involving a complex intellectual property dispute. 
  • Successfully defended numerous products liability and personal injury claims.

Insights

Publications
  • Are You Protected From COVID-19 Lawsuits by Mississippi's New Law? (August, 2020)
  • "The Department of Justice Curtails Asylum for Victims of Domestic Abuse," IADC Committee Newsletter (July 2018) Author
  • “Using Documents Obtained in Discovery in the U.S. in Foreign Proceedings,” Trial Practice Journal (Summer 2015) Author
  • "Increased Viability of Divisibility Defenses Under CERCLA,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (June 2015) Author
  • “Deposition Tips for Young Lawyers,” Trial Practice Journal (Fall 2014) Author
  • “BP Fights Fifth Circuit Ruling On Deepwater Horizon Settlement,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (April 2014) Author
  • “Attorney Fees Now Easier to Recover in Patent Litigation,” Trial Practice Journal (Spring 2014) Author
  • “Changes in the Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence (Third Edition),” Defense Counsel Journal (July 2013) Co-Author
  • “Revisiting the Misuse of Public Nuisance Law to Address Climate Change and Chevron in Ecuador,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (June 2013) Author
  • "Substantial Factor Causation in Asbestos Litigation,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (January 2013) Author
  • “Recognition of Foreign Judgments by U.S. Courts,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (February 2012) Author
  • “Supreme Court to Review Constitutionality of Health-Care Law,” Trial Practice Journal (Fall 2011) Author
  • "The Misuse of Public Nuisance Law to Address Climate Change," Defense Counsel Journal (April 2011) Author
  • "Effective Motion Practice in Trial Courts," Trial Practice Journal (Summer 2006) Co-Author
  • Mississippi Chancery Practice (2000) Author
Speaking Engagements
  • “Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence: Take Three,” CLE Presentation (July 2012) Speaker
  • “Medicare Set-Asides in Personal Injury Litigation,” CLE Presentation (October 2011) Speaker
  • "New Reporting Requirements for Settlements With Medicare Beneficiaries," CLE Presentation (December 2010) Speaker
News

Memberships & Affiliations

  • The Mississippi Bar
  • Alabama State Bar
  • American Bar Association, Trial Practice Section & Tort, Trial and Insurance Practice Section
  • Fifth Circuit Bar Association
  • Capital Area Bar Association
  • International Association of Defense Counsel, Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee - Chair

Recognition

  • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Commercial Litigation (2016-2020), Environmental Law (2015-2020), Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions - Defendants (2016-2020), The Best Lawyers in America
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers list (2010-2019), Top 50 Mississippi Super Lawyers list (2014, 2016), Super Lawyers
  • Pro Bono Award, Capital Area Bar Association (2010)
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation

Education

  • Pennsylvania State University School of Law
    J.D., 1993
  • Michigan State University
    B.A. in Political Science, 1984

Admissions

  • Mississippi
  • Alabama
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Mississippi
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Mississippi
  • Represented clients in toxic and environmental tort cases involving more than 4,000 plaintiffs.
  • Directed verdict for waste management company in business tort case alleging tortious interference with contract.
  • Represented lender in several consumer finance cases involving more than 1,000 plaintiffs.
  • Jury verdict for bank in three-week lender liability case.
  • Jury verdict for drug store chain in case alleging client failed to protect customer’s personal identifying information.
  • Jury verdict for stock brokerage firm accused of fraud.
  • Verdict for bank in case alleging improper wire transfer of funds.
  • Verdict for company in contract dispute involving ownership of stock.
  • Represented agriculture company in an arbitration involving a complex intellectual property dispute. 
  • Successfully defended numerous products liability and personal injury claims.
Publications
  • Are You Protected From COVID-19 Lawsuits by Mississippi's New Law? (August, 2020)
  • "The Department of Justice Curtails Asylum for Victims of Domestic Abuse," IADC Committee Newsletter (July 2018) Author
  • “Using Documents Obtained in Discovery in the U.S. in Foreign Proceedings,” Trial Practice Journal (Summer 2015) Author
  • "Increased Viability of Divisibility Defenses Under CERCLA,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (June 2015) Author
  • “Deposition Tips for Young Lawyers,” Trial Practice Journal (Fall 2014) Author
  • “BP Fights Fifth Circuit Ruling On Deepwater Horizon Settlement,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (April 2014) Author
  • “Attorney Fees Now Easier to Recover in Patent Litigation,” Trial Practice Journal (Spring 2014) Author
  • “Changes in the Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence (Third Edition),” Defense Counsel Journal (July 2013) Co-Author
  • “Revisiting the Misuse of Public Nuisance Law to Address Climate Change and Chevron in Ecuador,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (June 2013) Author
  • "Substantial Factor Causation in Asbestos Litigation,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (January 2013) Author
  • “Recognition of Foreign Judgments by U.S. Courts,” IADC Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee Newsletter (February 2012) Author
  • “Supreme Court to Review Constitutionality of Health-Care Law,” Trial Practice Journal (Fall 2011) Author
  • "The Misuse of Public Nuisance Law to Address Climate Change," Defense Counsel Journal (April 2011) Author
  • "Effective Motion Practice in Trial Courts," Trial Practice Journal (Summer 2006) Co-Author
  • Mississippi Chancery Practice (2000) Author
Speaking Engagements
  • “Reference Manual on Scientific Evidence: Take Three,” CLE Presentation (July 2012) Speaker
  • “Medicare Set-Asides in Personal Injury Litigation,” CLE Presentation (October 2011) Speaker
  • "New Reporting Requirements for Settlements With Medicare Beneficiaries," CLE Presentation (December 2010) Speaker
News
  • The Mississippi Bar
  • Alabama State Bar
  • American Bar Association, Trial Practice Section & Tort, Trial and Insurance Practice Section
  • Fifth Circuit Bar Association
  • Capital Area Bar Association
  • International Association of Defense Counsel, Toxic and Hazardous Substances Litigation Committee - Chair
  • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Commercial Litigation (2016-2020), Environmental Law (2015-2020), Mass Tort Litigation/Class Actions - Defendants (2016-2020), The Best Lawyers in America
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers list (2010-2019), Top 50 Mississippi Super Lawyers list (2014, 2016), Super Lawyers
  • Pro Bono Award, Capital Area Bar Association (2010)
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation