James J. Boland is a Partner focusing on complex commercial litigation and domestic and international arbitration. Mr. Boland has extensive experience and has represented a variety of corporations, businesses and professional firms in matters involving reinsurance (life & health, property & casualty), antitrust, securities fraud, accountant liability, consumer protection, shareholder and derivative disputes, mergers and acquisitions disputes, including post-closing disputes, and a variety of other commercial matters. Mr. Boland also has extensive experience in class action litigation, representing corporations and businesses in matters involving antitrust, securities fraud, residential and commercial mortgage practices, commercial leasing and other retail sales and marketing practices, and has experience in SEC and other governmental investigations. Prior to joining Freeborn & Peters LLP, Mr. Boland was a partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP focusing on commercial litigation and dispute resolution.

Examples of Mr. Boland’s dispute resolution experience include:

  • Represented a major U.S. manufacturer in international arbitration relating to $1 billion sale of business to a German conglomerate.
  • Represented a foreign manufacturer in international arbitration involving dispute with a foreign supplier.
  • Represented major foreign reinsurer in international arbitration involving dispute with retrocessionaire over restatement of retrocession.
  • Represented domestic life & health reinsurer in dispute with cedent companies involving management of long-term care business.
  • Represented a major foreign reinsurer in defense of adverse arbitral award in the United States and Europe.
  • Advised a major foreign pharmaceutical manufacturer in connection with a dispute and potential LCIA arbitration concerning a worldwide co-marketing and promotion of blockbuster drug.
  • Advised a major domestic company on international arbitration and dispute resolution for worldwide joint venture agreement with South American corporation.
  • Advised a domestic manufacturer and distributors on international arbitration and dispute resolution for agreements with various Asian, African and Middle Eastern parties, including issues of validity, enforceability and application of Sharia law. 
  • Represented Tier 1 domestic automotive supplier in action against Tier 2 foreign supplier ruling to long-term international supply contracts with major foreign car manufacturer.
  • Represented a private equity firm, principals, and portfolio company in multiple arbitration and litigation proceedings relating to acquisition and restructuring activities.
  • Represented a major U.S. oil and gas company in False Claims Act case challenging over two decades of federal royalty payments for natural gas and natural gas liquids extracted from federally leased lands.
  • Represented a merging party in private antitrust action seeking to enjoin merger of two major oil and gas companies.
  • Represented a fortune 500 manufacturer in mass tort class action relating to operations at an industrial drum reconditioning facility.
  • Represented a major accounting firm in nationwide class action asserting pre-bankruptcy violations of federal securities laws.
  • Represented a major international auditing firm in securities and common law fraud action brought by companies that sold businesses to audit client in exchange for stock.
  • Represented a major manufacturer in nationwide consumer fraud, fraud and breach of contract class action involving sale of analog radios prior to conversion from analog to digital transmission service.
Honors & Awards: 
  • Chambers-USA Guide to America’s Leading Lawyers for Business – Insurance: Dispute Resolution: Reinsurance, Illinois, 2019 (cited in multiple years) 
  • Irish Legal 100 2015 Honoree
  • Irish Legal 100 2016 Honoree
  • Illinois Leading Lawyers - 2019 (cited in multiple years)


Professional Activities: 
  • American Bar Association
  • International Bar Association
18 Jun Insight

Client Alert: Supreme Court Limits Class Action Tolling, Reducing the Ability of Plaintiffs to File Successive Class Actions for the Same Claims

This Client Alert addresses the United States Supreme Court’s decision in China Agritech, Inc. v. Resh. China Agritech clarifies the doctrine known as class action tolling, under which the statute of limitations for individual claims of absent class members are tolled when a class action is filed until class certification is denied.
Freeborn Peters White paper (PDF)


J.D., Northwestern University School of Law, cum laude, Order of the Coif
B.A., University of Chicago

State Bar Admissions

New York

Federal Bar Admissions

  • United States Court of Appeals for the Second, Third, Sixth, Seventh, Ninth and Eleventh Circuits
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan