Biography

Overview of Practice and "All That Jazz"

Jonathan's law practice is composed of beverage law, insurance coverage and litigation, commercial litigation, complex family law, appeals, and mediation. His multifaceted practice and his creative, analytical approach to complex legal issues are natural extensions of his training as a classical and jazz musician and as a photographer. This background enables him to work intuitively with simultaneously moving and sometimes dissonant parts. Whether the circumstances require application of tried and true methods or on-the-spot improvisation, he always looks for the best light for our clients.

Beverage Law

Jonathan has experience working with both new and established New England breweries. His beverage law practice focuses on risk management from start-up through growth, regulatory advice, and litigation before administrative tribunals and trial courts. Jonathan spoke on risk management at the 2017 New England Brew Summit, hosted by the Maine Brewers Guild, and the 2018 Craft Brewers Conference, hosted by the Brewers Association. He has also been a panelist on the impact of the Food Safety Modernization Act on breweries for the University of Southern Maine's QC2 Lab and at the 2019 New England Brew Summit. Jonathan regularly pushes out content for the craft beer community in the form of blogs, podcasts, and articles, which can be accessed on the firm's beverage blog, Lawyers on Tap.

Insurance Coverage

Jonathan's insurance coverage and litigation practice includes all facets of insurance coverage and bad faith matters. In his more than 25 years of first- and third-party insurance coverage work, Jonathan has analyzed and litigated a broad spectrum of policy types, provisions, and claims. From the smallest first-party property claim to complex, third-party coverage litigation involving 60 underlying lawsuits, Jonathan has breadth and depth of experience in this area.

Complex Commercial Litigation

Jonathan's experience in complex commercial litigation includes representation of clients in a wide array of matters including breach of purchase and sale agreements, complex licensing agreements, trade secrets, interference with contract, palming off, breach of fiduciary duty, and business valuation and profits. Among Jonathan's strengths in this area are his ability to analyze complicated financial damages calculations and his understanding of business valuation. He is the co-editor of The Comprehensive Guide to Economic Damages, published by Business Valuation Resources.

Family Law

Although not an obvious relationship, Jonathan's experience in complex commercial litigation was the background that led him to practicing family law. His understanding of business valuation and related commercial issues is a natural fit for family law cases involving closely held companies or significant marital and non-marital assets. In addition, Jonathan is dedicated to pro bono family law work for people of limited means. Jonathan was asked to write the Introduction for the 2020 edition of Business Valuation in Divorce: A Case Compendium, published as a joint effort between the ABA Solo, Small Firm and General Practice Division, and Business Valuation Resources.

Appellate

Jonathan has argued appeals before the Maine Supreme Judicial Court and the United States First Circuit Court of Appeals. In addition to the briefs for the appeals that he has argued, Jonathan has written numerous briefs, including amicus curiae briefs in the United States Supreme Court and the Maine Supreme Judicial Court.

Mediation

After more than two decades representing litigants, Jonathan decided to put those skills to use helping litigants – or those headed for litigation – resolve their differences. In April 2019, he completed the University of Southern Maine Professional Development Programs’ Certificate Program in Mediation to help hone those skills. Returning to the music analogy of his law career, Jonathan looks forward assisting parties in finding some harmony in the cacophony that often accompanies litigation.

Up Close and Personal

Jonathan resides in South Portland, Maine, with his three-legged lab mix, Kirby. His photography has been exhibited in both solo and group shows in Maine and New York; in 2009 he was one of 12 New England photographers selected to present their work at the Currier Museum of Art in Manchester, New Hampshire. Jonathan played trumpet in various ensembles in and around Maine until retiring from that avocation in 2007.

Jonathan, who chairs Verrill's Wellness Committee, completed the Trek Across Maine in 2015-2019 and the Cycle the in 2016-2019 to raise money for the American Lung Association. In 2019, he also completed the Cycle for Life ride in Rhode Island to raise funds for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Not to be deterred by the COVID-19 pandemic, he completed the virtual versions of the Trek Across Maine and Cycle the Seacoast in 2020. In 2017, Jonathan organized the Verrill Velocilawyers, Verrill's team for the Trek Across Maine. The team also participated in both the Cycle the Seacoast ride and Trek Across Maine in 2018 and 2019. Jonathan is also an Eagle Scout.

Services/Industries

Education

  • Syracuse University College of Law  (J.D., magna cum laude)
  • Ithaca College  (B.A.)
  • University of Southern Maine
    • Certificate Program in Mediation, Professional Development Program

Public Service

  • New England Bar Association, Board of Directors (2018-present)
  • Member, Pro Bono Committee, Maine Justice Action Group
  • Maine State Bar Association Board of Governors (2015-2016, 2019-present)
    • Chair, Bylaws and Policies Committee
    • Chair, Ad Hoc COVID-19 Pandemic Committee
    • Member, Maine Bar Journal Committee
  • Ithaca College Alumni Admissions Representative
  • Board Member, Maine Academy for Modern Music (2014-2015)
  • Board of Trustees, Salt Institute for Documentary Studies (2007-2013)

Bar Admissions

  • Maine

Memberships

  • American Bar Association
  • New England Bar Association
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation
  • Maine State Bar Association
  • Cumberland County Bar Association

Honors

  • Received Katahdin Counsel Recognition for pro bono efforts (2012-2014 and 2016-2017)
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© for Litigation - Insurance in Portland, Maine

To learn more about third-party ratings and rankings, and the selection processes used for inclusion, click here.

Court and Other Admissions

  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maine
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court

Firm Highlights

Matter

Elections and Constitutional Law: Constitutionality of Ranked Choice Voting

Verrill Dana represented the League of Women Voters in two proceedings before the Maine Supreme Court relating to the constitutionality of Maine’s voter-approved ranked choice voting law. The first proceeding, Opinion of the Justices...

Matter

Taxation and Constitutional Law: Amicus Brief to U.S. Supreme Court regarding Sales Taxation by States

Verrill represented the National Auctioneers Association as amicus curiae in the U.S. Supreme Court case South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc . The case presented the issue of whether states could require out-of-state sellers to...

Blog

When the Weather Outside Gets Frightful: Moving Indoors in COVID-19

As the sun fades on another Maine summer and autumn rushes by, the appeal of outdoor seating at tasting rooms, bars, and restaurants starts to fade like our fall colors. Yes, there are space...

News

Nearly 80 Verrill Attorneys Recognized by Best Lawyers® 2021, Including a Dozen Named Lawyers of the Year

(August 24, 2020) – Nearly 80 Verrill attorneys were recognized as "Best Lawyers" by Best Lawyers® 2021 , including 12 attorneys named “Lawyer of the Year,” a distinguished recognition for only a single lawyer...

Publication/Podcast

Does a property insurance policy still provide coverage if a business does not reopen after the COVID-19 Stay At Home Orders are lifted?

Most property insurance policies in today’s market include a provision that causes coverage to lapse if the property is vacant (as defined by the policy) for a period in excess of 30 days. Fortunately...

Publication/Podcast

Zoom ADR: Best Practices for Virtually Every Virtual ADR Event

As the post-COVID-19 “new normal” comes into focus, it is unlikely that civil jury trials will happen in many jurisdictions until at least the spring of 2021. For family law matters, cases involving children...

Blog

What You Need to Know Before Opening Your Outdoor Tasting Room

Blog

Hand Sanitizer Relief for Distilled Spirits Extension

Matter

Real Estate and Mortgage Law: Sufficiency of Mortgagee’s Notice of Right to Cure to Borrower

Verrill filed an amicus brief on behalf of the Maine Association of Mortgage Professionals in a case involving an issue of first impression under Maine law regarding the sufficiency of a statutory notice of...

Publication/Podcast

Juggling the Costs of Reopening and Litigation: Try Mediation

State governments are creating paths to restart their economies. Businesses desperately want to start generating income and put the COVID-19 crisis behind them. Companies and their management are closely studying the guidelines issued by...