Hartley Michon Robb | Executive Advocacy, Employment Law and Litigation

H. James Hartley


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H. James Hartley

According to Chambers USA, “Top-flight executive advocate James Hartley” is held in extremely high regard by his peers and clients for the quality of his representations, particularly in executive transitions and litigation, and is lauded as ‘a fabulous lawyer’ with ‘extraordinary expertise’ and a ‘creative approach’ to disputes.  Jim is the firm's managing partner.  He and his partners pioneered the firm’s nationally-ranked executive advocacy practice which focuses on the legal needs of executives, professionals and select businesses in sophisticated employment matters. 

Jim has been selected by Thomson Reuters to be listed in New England Super Lawyers since 2004. For the seventh year in a row, Jim has been recognized in Chambers USA as a Leader in the field of Labor and Employment, Mainly Plaintiffs Representation.  For the fifth year in a row, he was given Chambers’ highest ranking, that of Band One. Jim was also selected by his peers for inclusion in the 2017 Edition of The Best Lawyers in America.

As a trusted advocate and highly respected advisor, Jim has particular experience in complex executive transition and litigation matters, including those arising out of change of control and non-competition agreements, mergers and acquisitions, incentive and equity compensation plans, and other deferred compensation and retirement arrangements, as well as employment, retention and separation.  Jim represents clients from numerous industries in agency and court proceedings, as well as in arbitration. He has been routinely successful in obtaining multi six- and seven-figure resolutions through negotiation, alternative dispute resolution, and litigation.

Prior to co-founding the firm, Jim was a partner at a large Boston law firm.  Before that, Jim was an executive and lead employment law counsel for a Fortune 100 company.  In that capacity, he counseled executives and human resource professionals on high-level executive compensation and transition matters, as well as day-to-day employment law compliance issues, and was responsible for handling all employment-related litigation and disputes.

Jim is a member of the American, Massachusetts and Boston Bar Associations, and is a frequent author and speaker before both business and legal audiences. He has served as Co-Chair of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Committee of the Boston Bar Association Labor and Employment Section, and has authored numerous articles in the executive advocacy field, including "Negotiating Executive Severance: Five Factors for a Better Package" and "Taking Stock of the Implied Covenant of Good Faith & Fair Dealing."  With law partner Barbara A. Robb, Jim co-authored "Monitoring and Controlling Inappropriate Behavior in the E-Workplace: Strategies for Avoiding Potential Liability."


Jim is a cum laude graduate of Boston College Law School and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.






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