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Hal Harlowe

Criminal defense Attorney at Madison, WI

Not yet reviewed
  • Licensed for 53 years
    State WI
    Acquired 1970
    Good Standing No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Hal

Learn Hal’s areas of practice.

Practice areas
  1. Criminal defense
    Defense of Licensed Professionals, White Collar Defense, Criminal Defense in State and Federal courts

    45 years, 1,000 cases

  2. Licensing
    Defense of Physicians, Lawyers , Psychologists, Nurses and other licensed professionals before The Department of Safety and Professional Services, OLR, The Office of the Commissioner of Insurance and other Regulatory bodies

    45 years, 500 cases

  3. Juvenile law

    45 years, 500 cases

  4. Litigation
    Personal Injury, Will Disputes, Real Estate and Commercial Litigation

    45 years, 500 cases

I currently chair two practice groups at Murphy Desmond S.C.: Criminal Defense (which includes Juvenile Defense) and Defense of Licensed Professionals. In doing so, I serve as a mentor to several lawyers in those areas of law at the firm.

I have significant experience as both a public and private sector attorney since beginning my career in 1970. As a former 3-term District Attorney in Dane County, my familiarity with the complex operations of the legal system gives me an advantage in helping my clients. I represent defendants in criminal and juvenile defense cases, licensed professionals in disciplinary matters, and I handle civil litigation matters such as personal injury, real estate disputes, and guardianship issues.

Having led countless investigations, I have first-hand knowledge of how investigations are conducted and how to defend against them. I've handled civil and criminal cases in state and federal courts ranging from basic matters to extremely complex litigation, as well as high profile cases where confidentiality is vital.

I welcome the opportunity to discuss your case, and hope that I can be of assistance. 


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Murphy Desmond SC
33 E Main St Ste 500
Po Box 2038
Madison, WI, 53701-2038

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AVVO RATING 9.5 (Superb)

Work Experience

  • Attorney
  • Murphy Desmond S.C.
  • 2012 - Present
  • Owner, Attorney
  • Harlowe Law S.C.
  • 1989 - 2012
  • Chairperson
  • Governor's Task Force on the Discipline of Licensed Professionals
  • 1985 - 1986
  • Elected District Attorney
  • Dane County District Attorney
  • 1983 - 1989
  • Attorney
  • Public Interest Law Firm
  • 1979 - 1983
  • Director
  • Wisconsin Department of Regulation & Licensing (currently Department of Safety & Professional Services)
  • 1978 - 1979
  • Attorney
  • Various Law Firms
  • 1973 - 1977
  • Assistant Attorney General
  • Wisconsin Department of Justice - Criminal Trials Unit
  • 1972 - 1973
  • Assistant District Attorney
  • Rock County District Attorney's Office
  • 1970 - 1972
View all work experience


  • University of Wisconsin Law School
  • JD - Juris Doctor
  • 1970
  • University of Wisconsin
  • N/A


  • State Bar of Wisconsin
  • Member
  • 1970 - Present
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin
  • Member
  • N/A
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • Member
  • N/A
  • Wisconsin Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Member
  • N/A
View all associations

Languages Spoken

  • English

Honors and Awards

  • AV Rated
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2014
  • Top 100 Trial Lawyers
  • National Trial Lawyers
  • 2014
  • Top 10 Criminal Defense Attorneys
  • National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys
  • 2014
  • Best Lawyer, Criminal Defense
  • Best Lawyers in America
  • 2013
  • Criminal Defense
  • Wisconsin Super Lawyers
  • 2013
  • Best Lawyers in Madison
  • Best Lawyers in Madison
  • 2012
View all awards

Attorney endorsements

Received (5)
Given (4)
Endorse Hal
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 12
Relationship: Co-worker
"Great lawyer. I highly endorse Hal."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jun 02
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse Hal. He is a highly skilled attorney that is well respected in the legal community."
White collar crime Attorney | Jan 25
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"I endorse this lawyer. I have known and worked with Hal Harlowe on a number of complex cases (both criminal and civil) since 1990. His years of experience and great knowledge of state and federal law, and the investigative practices of various agencies, make him a worthy co-counsel, and a lawyer I am very comfortable referring matters to."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 24
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Hal achieves remarkable outcomes for clients because he is trusted, well prepared, thoughtful and insightful."
Juvenile law Attorney | Nov 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer. He is knowledgeable and really cares about his clients."
Divorce and separation

Avvo Contributions

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Madison Criminal defense Lawyer Hal Harlowe
Hal Harlowe
Criminal defense Attorney
Madison, WI
Licensed for 53 years