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Jim Shea

Senior Partner

Jim Shea is the senior partner in the Firm and has been with HSK’s Fort Wayne office since 1986.  He is an insurance defense lawyer, with an emphasis on defending complex personal injury cases and commercial disputes.  Mr. Shea received his B.A., magna cum laude, from King’s College in 1981 followed by a Doctorate of Jurisprudence from Valparaiso University School of Law in 1984 (where he was a member of the Law Review’s Editorial Board).  When not in the courtroom, he is in a gym coaching CYO girls’ basketball.

Practice Emphasis

  • General Insurance Defense Litigation
  • Commercial Litigation

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Allen County Bar Association
  • Indiana State Bar Association
  • Defense Trial Counsel of Indiana

Bar Admissions

  • Indiana State Bar
  • U.S. District Court, Northern and Southern Districts of Indiana
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit


  • King’s College, B.A., magna cum laude, 1981
  • Valparaiso University School Law, J.D. 1984

Additional Experience/Awards

  • Indiana Super Lawyer
  • Note Editor, Valparaiso University Law Review
  • Recipient, Charles Vaughn Award for “Excellence in Trial Advocacy” (Valparaiso University Law School)
  • Volunteer Deputy Prosecutor in Allen County (1999-2001)
  • Federal Public Defender Panel Attorney (1992-1998)
  • Counsel to the Three Rivers Festival Board of Directors (1997-2000)
  • Pro Bono Award, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Indiana (Criminal Defense of the Indigent)
  • Eastern College Athletic Conference, Scholar Athlete Award
  • NCAA Post Graduate Scholarship (King’s College Basketball)

Noted Jury Trials Include:

Leverette v. Little Turtle Hillcrest Bowl, Inc., Allen Superior Court, Cause No. 02D01-0305-CT-192 (Alleged inadequate security case: Plaintiff was shot, lost a leg and requested $10 million in closing – Defense Verdict.)

Charmaine R. Minniefield, Individually and as Mother and Next Friend for Rayven Minniefield-Bryant and Cienna Minniefield, minors, v. Northern Indiana Public Service Company and John S. Bloom, as Personal Representative of Fred J. Zurbrick, Deceased, Allen Superior Court, Cause No. 02D01-0203-CT-104 (Plaintiffs with TBI’s requested $1.4 million in closing – Defense Verdict.)

Hollingsworth v. Spencer and IBEW Local 668 Title Holding Corporation, White Superior Court, Cause No. 91D091-1204-CT-011, Admitted Liability TBI case (Plaintiff requested $20 million in closing – $100,000 verdict.)

Lance v. Kim Hill, Inc., d/b/a Coody Browns, Lagrange Circuit Court, Cause No. 44C01-1206-CT-010 (Fall from pier into lake water with substantial leg fracture and bacterial infection – Defense Verdict.)

Reported Decisions Include:

  • Goodwin v. Yeakle’s Sports Bar and Grill, Inc., 62 N.E. 2d 384 (Ind. 2016) (Landmark decision where the Indiana Supreme Court changed the “duty” analysis for a property owner or business: summary judgment for the bar in “triple shooting” affirmed).
  • LC&S, Inc. v. Warren County Area Plan Commission, 244 F.3d 601 (7th Cir. 2001) (Favorable “legislative due process” summary judgment affirmed by Circuit Judge Posner).
  • Wartell v. Lee, 47 N.E.3d 381 (Ind. Ct. App. 2015) (Summary judgment affirmed: vague statements in letter to university chancellor were not defamatory per se).

Ready to learn more?

At HSK, effective communication skills and the ability to find successful solutions to clients' problems through knowledge, integrity, experience and efficiency are our hallmarks. And, with offices in Fort Wayne, South Bend and Indianapolis, our team is available wherever and whenever you need us.