Jason L. Byrne

Partner | jbyrne@wnj.com | V-Card | Profile PDF Grand RapidsT 616.752.2263F 616.222.2263 Jason Byrne is a past chair of the firm's Insurance Practice Group, and has over a decade of experience advising clients on complex insurance and risk management issues, including resolving high-stakes coverage disputes. Mr. Byrne is an active litigator, having successfully handled insurance and other commercial cases in state and federal trial courts. He also regularly appears before appellate courts, having secured victories for clients before the United States... Read More
Jason Byrne is a past chair of the firm's Insurance Practice Group, and has over a decade of experience advising clients on complex insurance and risk management issues, including resolving high-stakes coverage disputes. Mr. Byrne is an active litigator, having successfully handled insurance and other commercial cases in state and federal trial courts. He also regularly appears before appellate courts, having secured victories for clients before the United States Court of Appeals, the Michigan Court of Appeals and the Michigan Supreme Court. Additionally, Mr. Byrne regularly consults with higher education institutions on issues surrounding their policies and procedures, as well as their obligations under federal law.
  • Experience
  • Biography
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  • Publications
  • Leadership

Experience

  • Obtained judgment in federal court that Chinese insurance company was obligated to defend major American manufacturer in products liability action arising out of Chinese-supplied component part
  • Regularly advises corporate clients, including bio-tech firms, manufacturers, banks and other financial institutions on legal issues involving insurance and indemnity
  • Represented businesses in connection with insurance claims for major property damage and equipment breakdown, including addressing issues related to business income and extra expense coverage
  • Lead Appellate Counsel, Ile v. Foremost Ins. Co., 493 Mich. 915; 823 NW2d 426 (2012) (Michigan Supreme Court adopted insurance policy interpretation advanced by Warner and reversed lower courts' judgment against client)
  • Lead Appellate Counsel, Malpass v. Dep't of Treasury, 494 Mich 237; 833 NW2d 272 (2013) (Michigan Supreme Court agreed with Warner's interpretation of the Michigan Income Tax Act and reinstated a judgment granting clients' income tax refund)
  • Corporate Counsel to the Michigan Professional Insurance Exchange, a reciprocal insurer offering professional liability coverage to Michigan physicians and hospitals
  • Represented Michigan college in responding to issues related to the Americans with Disabilities Act and Title IX
  • National Insurance Counsel for Major Trucking Company - Counseled client on insurance-related issues arising out of client's Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, including:
    • analysis of coverage and deductible obligations under liability policies,
    • advising on claims handling and settlement issues, and
    • negotiating with insurance carriers
  • Represented various wireless providers and property owners in navigating the legal and regulatory hurdles surrounding the placement and co-location of wireless communication towers, antennae and other equipment
  • Represented a prominent Michigan law firm in connection with a $30 million claim of legal malpractice related to foreign patent applications. Prevailed by obtaining both summary disposition and case evaluation sanctions against plaintiff
  • Counsel for major Michigan manufacturer in multimillion dollar environmental contamination claim brought by Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. Secured a judgment of no liability in favor of the manufacturer after a multi-week trial
  • Counsel for trust beneficiaries in a breach of fiduciary duty case against co-trustee involving misappropriation of trust property, and obtained a jury verdict for beneficiaries of over $2.3 million
  • Successfully represented various homeowners in negotiations with insurance carriers and others to ensure complete restoration of their homes after severe fire damage
  • Handled various coverage disputes between insurers and policyholders related to general and professional liability policies, directors and officers coverage, as well as home and auto policies

Industries

Practices

Education

  • University of Illinois J.D. 2002 magna cum laude
  • Alma College B.A. 1999 magna cum laude

Admitted

  • 2002, Illinois
  • 2006, Michigan

Courts

  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois in 2002
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan in 2005
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit in 2008
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan in 2010

Honors and Awards

  • Named as a Michigan Super Lawyer Rising Star, 2009-2013

Bar Associations

  • American Bar Association
    Association Council of Appellate Lawyers; Commercial & Business Litigation Committee; Trial Practice Committee; Tort, Trial & Insurance Practice Section; Member, Appellate Advocacy Committee; Insurance Coverage Litigation Committee; Young Lawyers Division; Member, Tort, Trial & Insurance Practice Committee
  • State Bar of Michigan
  • State Bar of Illinois
  • Canadian Bar Association
    Associate Member
  • Grand Rapids Bar Association

Professional Affiliations

  • Michigan Supreme Court Historical Society Advocates Guild

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