John W. Howard
A corporate and business litigator for more than thirty years, John Howard has distinguished himself both at trial and in his ability to successfully short-circuit major lawsuits through the skillful use of early motions. He has handled more than one hundred fifty cases though trial, mediation, arbitration and dismissal throughout his career.
Mr. Howard represents large companies and small in all manner of business and contractual disputes and specializes in loss prevention through advance consultation and the implementation of internal programs designed to insulate companies from potential lawsuits. He has represented companies in such diverse industries as defense contracting, turbine and generator manufacturing, real estate development, high tech, e-commerce, contracting, venture funds, banking, insurance and many others.
In 1986, Mr. Howard became general counsel of one of the nation’s largest privately held real estate and parking management firms with over $100,000,000 in annual revenues, parlaying his litigation skills to implement loss mitigation and insurance programs that not only resulted in reducing claims and preventing litigation but, also, in substantially shrinking insurance costs and fees to outside lawyers by more than one million dollars.
He brought his experience in litigating major corporate disputes to the skill of corporate governance, negotiating and drafting contracts and addressing corporate and regulatory compliance issues. He instituted policies that successfully minimized the risk of litigation and reduced legal claims by 80%. He navigated the company through labyrinthine state and federal corporate regulations as the company expanded throughout the nation from its California base.
Mr. Howard served in that capacity until he was recruited to serve as general counsel of a real estate development company specializing in high-end retirement centers.
In the early ‘90’s, Mr. Howard turned his litigation skills to Constitutional law and undertook cases throughout the nation, specializing in cases involving the protection of First, Second, Fifth and Tenth Amendment liberties. He represented states and counties in their efforts to stem the tide of federal encroachment on state prerogatives and to secure the unique cultures of individual states. His cases were reported in such national newspapers as the Wall Street Journal, Investor’s Business Daily, New York Times, Washington Times, Washington Post and many others. He was featured on CNN and profiled by Connie Chung on Eye to Eye with Connie Chung.
Mr. Howard returned to private practice in 1995, establishing JW Howard/Attorneys to bring his combination of major corporate transactional experience and litigation skill to companies of all sizes. Since that time he has assisted dozens of companies in creating structures that prevent claims; efficiently litigating those that cannot be avoided and negotiating protective agreements that mean disputes never arise. His clients run the gamut from high tech and internet start ups to traditional, old economy heavy equipment manufacturing to consumer products to real estate development to important government contractors. His clients include publicly as well as privately held companies. In 2017, Mr. Howard affiliated with The Davillier Law Group, becoming Special Counsel to that firm.
At Davillier, his specialty at assisting start-ups with the organization of corporate structures has assisted dozens of companies in achieving successful establishment and expansion plans. At the same time, he has served as a sort of outside “inside counsel”, intimately involved with his clients’ businesses, advising and representing them in the hundreds of challenges corporations now face through government regulation and corporate competition and he has coordinated the employment of more highly specialized counsel for discrete, high level projects.
Mr. Howard is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego, in philosophy and history. He received his law degree from California Western School of Law and completed the University of California Hastings Law School College of Advocacy. He is a member of the Enright Inn of Court of the American Inns of Court.
For twenty years, he served as an arbitrator appointed by the San Diego Superior Court and as an Administrative Law Judge for employment disputes for the City of Los Angeles in 1994-95.
Mr. Howard served as chairman of the Indigent Defense Advisory Board by appointment of the San Diego County Board of Supervisors in which capacity he was responsible for the creation and establishment of the first public defender office in San Diego County. He was also appointed by the Mayor Roger Hedgecock as chairman of the Public Arts Advisory Board of the City of San Diego. His work on that board resulted in the establishment of San Diego’s first Commission for Arts and Culture.
Mr. Howard has also served on the boards of numerous charitable organizations and has been recognized both by the State Bar of California and the San Diego Volunteer Lawyers Program for exemplary service to the profession.
Admitted to Practice:
United States Supreme Court
All courts in the State of California
All courts in the State of Colorado
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia
United States Court of Federal Claims
Federal District Court, Northern District of California
Federal District Court, Eastern District of California
Federal District Court, Central District of California
Federal District Court, Southern District of California
Federal District Court, Eastern District of Michigan
Who’s Who in America
Who’s Who in the American West
Who’s Who in American Law