James J. Hughes, III



Jim Hughes is the administrative partner of Bricker & Eckler LLP, responsible for the administrative oversight of the firm’s overall practice, management and day-to-day operations. Jim also assists the firm’s managing partner with strategic planning and policy level measures. Jim is a partner in the firm’s Litigation group and represents clients in complex commercial litigation matters, including health care and environmental litigation. His practice also includes developmental disabilities law with an emphasis on Medicaid litigation. His litigation experience includes recovering $6 million in an action against the Ohio Department of Education in a matter involving calculation of state foundation funding for public school systems — Cincinnati City School District v. State Board of Education, 2008 Ohio 1434; recovering $7.2 million on behalf of Dayton City School District in a matter involving calculation of state foundation funding; and recovering $1.5 million in an action against the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) in a matter involving a $52 million contract to manage Ohio’s Child Welfare System. He has successfully defended Verizon Wireless in actions brought to enjoin the construction of cellular communications towers.

Jim also advises health care systems on regulatory compliance and fraud, as well as abuse matters. In addition, he has defended health care systems in matters brought by physician groups alleging tortious interference with business opportunities and anti-trust activities.

Other accomplishments include a favorable decision for a beer manufacturer following a jury trial in a matter involving the business valuation of a beer distributing franchise under the Ohio Alcoholic Beverage Franchise Act — Bonbright v. InBev USA; a successful defense against a TRO seeking to enjoin the actions of a client engaged in the business of providing reinsurance coverage for automobile extended warranty products; secured a bench verdict, affirmed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, for a client against a contract manufacturer for misappropriation of trade secrets relating to a proprietary formula used to manufacture professional grade hair color products — Amalgamated Industries v. Tressa, 2003 U.S. App. LEXIS 11905; prevailing at trial in favor of a municipal water company in a trespass action brought against a surface mining company to enjoin mining activities that caused the sudden interruption and depletion of the municipality’s water supply — Village of Byesville v. Northshore Coal, 2003 Ohio 4118.

Jim also serves as legal advisor to the Ohio Association of County Boards of Developmental Disabilities and served as lead trial counsel for local county boards in Thompson v. Hayes, 2006 Ohio App. LEXIS 5940, in defense of an action brought by private providers and the Ohio Providers Resource Association seeking to eliminate the provision in Ohio law requiring service contracts between county boards and private providers. He was also trial counsel to county boards and individual taxpayers in Zimmerman v. ODJFS to enjoin ODJFS administrative rules that set reimbursement rates in excess of the provider's usual and customary rate.

Professional & Community Activities
  • Member, Columbus Bar Association Ohio State Bar Association; American Bar Association
  • Member, American Health Lawyers Association
  • Member, Board of Trustees, Arthritis Foundation, Central Ohio Chapter
  • Vice President, Board of Trustees, International Field Studies
  • Past Member, Board of Trustees, Columbus Academy
Bar Admissions & Activities
  • Admitted, Ohio Supreme Court; United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth and Sixth Circuits; United States District Court, Southern District of Ohio; Northern District of Ohio; Eastern District of Kentucky
Awards & Recognition
  • Listed, Ohio Super Lawyers, 2007-2015
  • Listed, Best Lawyers in America (Commercial Litigation; Environmental Law; Litigation - Environmental) 2011-2016
  • Ranked, AV Preeminent, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Capital University School of Law (J.D. with honors, 1986); Order of the Curia; Capital University Law Review; recipient, Dean's Scholarship based on academic merit
  • Union College (B.A. with honors in history, 1980)
  • The Ohio State University, Fisher College of Business (Executive Education Leadership Program, 2008)
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