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About me

Michael Hanrahan provides businesses and individuals with legal counsel and advocacy services on a variety of topics, with a primary focus on litigation matters. Mr. Hanrahan is an experienced trial attorney, having represented clients in state and federal courts in more than twenty jury trials and a dozen court trials. He has also represented business clients in Wisconsin administrative proceedings involving discrimination and unemployment compensation claims.

In addition to his extensive courtroom experience, Mr. Hanrahan is a talented brief writer and has handled a number of appeals. For example, Mr. Hanrahan tried a commercial case involving a large industrial metal stamping press to a Jefferson County jury. After receiving a successful jury verdict in favor of his client under Wisconsin’s False Advertising Statute, the defendant appealed. Mr. Hanrahan briefed and argued the case to the Wisconsin Supreme Court, with the Court affirming the judgment for his client. (K&S Tool & Die v. Perfection Machinery Sales, 301 Wis.2d 109, 732 N.W.2d 792 (2007)). See ( The Court’s decision stands as a leading decision under this developing area of law. Mr. Hanrahan has also briefed and argued cases to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

As part of his civil litigation practice, Mr. Hanrahan regularly represents businesses and individuals regarding covenants not to compete, trade secret matters and confidentiality agreements. He has provided pre-lawsuit legal counseling and contract drafting for covenants not to compete, and judicial briefing and jury trial services as to covenants not to compete. In a recent jury trial involving a covenant not to compete, Mr. Hanrahan obtained a successful jury verdict in favor of his client on a trade secret claim, and, through legal briefing, a judicial declaration of the covenant not to compete’s invalidity, resulting in a complete victory for his client.

During Mr. Hanrahan’s first several years as an attorney, his practice focused on representing insurance companies, and he gained extensive experience in insurance coverage disputes. Since then, he has regularly represented business clients in insurance coverage disputes, including appellate cases. He has also handled professional negligence claims, including medical, dental and accounting malpractice claims. As part of his representation of insurers, Mr. Hanrahan handled a variety of personal injury lawsuits, including negligence and strict product liability cases. With this experience, Mr. Hanrahan has continued to represent clients in personal injury actions, primarily representing injured parties. He has successfully represented individuals in personal injury cases involving food borne illness, products liability and vehicular accidents.

Mr. Hanrahan also has gained significant experience in construction litigation matters. Mr. Hanrahan has represented developers in lawsuits against contractors for breach of contract and building defects. He has also represented contractors who have been forced to utilize their lien rights and pursue claims against developers and/or owners in order to be paid for their work. While in college, Mr. Hanrahan has worked as a laborer for a general contractor, thereby gaining a firsthand understanding of building trades and construction processes and the challenges that come with them.

In representing the firm’s clients over the years, Mr. Hanrahan has also litigated matters involving minority shareholder rights and securities claims. In such matters, Mr. Hanrahan employed business valuation methods and analysis. Such tools have also been valuable in the family law work that Mr. Hanrahan has performed. Often, the most contested issues in a family law matter will involve the valuation of closely held business interests and/or the income that is produced by closely held businesses. In such circumstances, Mr. Hanrahan’s experience as a commercial litigator adds significant value to his representation of family law clients.

While Mr. Hanrahan has the experience to take cases to trial with confidence, he recognizes that litigation can be a time consuming and expensive process. As such, Mr. Hanrahan provides advice and counsel to his clients regarding the potential of settlement throughout the litigation process. He has represented his clients in dozens of mediations, many of which have resulted in satisfactory settlements for his clients. In appropriate circumstances, Mr. Hanrahan uses creative resolution processes. For example, in one case, he negotiated an agreement with the opposing party to settle some aspects of the case, entered binding arbitration for other aspects of the case and tried the remainder of the case to a circuit court jury. Of course, each case is different, and Mr. Hanrahan has shown the ability to be tough when necessary, while continuing to interact with the opposing party in a professional and reasonable manner, thereby keeping the possibility of settlement discussions open at all times.


Practice areas


  1. Lawsuits & Disputes: 50%
    24 years
  2. Discrimination: 15%
    16 years
  3. Corporate: 10%
    13 years
  4. Personal Injury: 10%
    24 years
  5. Other: 15%
  6. More 



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Contact info

Fox, O'Neill & Shannon Sc

622 N Water St Ste 500
Milwaukee, WI, 53202-4910


WIGood Standing199203/20/2015
We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.
Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
10 Best Lawyers Wisconsin10 Best Lawyers2015
AV RatedMartindale-Hubbell2014
AV RatedMartindale-Hubbell2013
AV RatedMartindale-Hubbell2012
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
PartnerFox, O'Neill & Shannon, S.C1997 - Present
AttorneyBorgelt, Powell, Peterson & Frauen, S.C.1992 - 1997
Association namePosition nameDuration
Federal Trial Bar for the Northern District of IllinoisMember1999 - Present
State Bar of WisconsinMember1992 - Present
Eastern District of Wisconsin Bar AssociationMember1992 - Present
Milwaukee Bar AssociationMember1992 - Present
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
University of Wisconsin Law SchoolLawJD - Juris Doctor1992
Harvard UniversityBritish History & LiteratureBA - Bachelor of Arts1989