Best's Insurance Professionals and Claims Resource

Your Online Portal for Claims Industry Information

Best's Insurance Professionals and Claims Resource

Your Online Portal for Claims Industry Information



Best's Recommended Insurance Attorneys

General Defense


800 Lonsdale Building, 302 West Superior Street, Duluth, Minnesota 55802

Practice Areas

  • Insurance Defense
  • General Liability
  • Bodily Injury
  • Property Damage
  • Commercial Law
  • Trucking Law
  • Asbestos Litigation
  • Coverage Issues
  • Workers' Compensation

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About Us

Trial Group North have tried over 175 jury trials and have over 90 years of combined litigation experience. We are dedicated to helping our clients' needs through a philosophy of intelligent and aggressive litigation.

We regularly defend Fortune 500 companies in a wide variety of civil actions. Our firm tries complex cases involving asbestos, multi-party product liability and corporate liability claims. We practice throughout the States of Minnesota, North Dakota and Wisconsin, in all state and federal courts. Our attorneys defend claims including motor vehicles, premises liability, construction defects, property damage, work place injuries, toxic torts and catastrophic injury. We have served as national coordinating counsel for claims against an insulation contractor and served as liaison counsel in an environmental suit involving over 300 parties.

Trying cases before judges and juries gives our attorneys a complete understanding of court rules and jury psychology. We use the latest technology to support our clients' cases in the courtroom. Our office library is computerized so we have access to the most current cases and laws as soon as they are published.

Our firm size enables our clients to have access to the quality and experience large metropolitan firms offer without the associated expense. Our clients have constant and immediate access to the principals of the firm who pride themselves on responding quickly and appropriately to case and client needs.

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Client Information

Insurance Clients

Non-Insurance Clients

  • Azcon Corporation
  • Honeywell, Inc.
  • J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc.
  • Lorillard Tobacco Company
  • Moose International, Inc.
  • North American Refractories Company
  • Pneumo-Abex Corporation

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Personnel Information

Partners


Thomas R. Thibodeau

Duluth, MN

Admitted
  • Minnesota, 1967
  • Wisconsin, 1983
  • England, 1996
  • Wales, 1996
  • North Dakota, 2000
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin, 1983
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 1983
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh and Eighth Circuits, 1983
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1983
Memberships:
  • Minnesota State, England, Wales and Eleventh District Bar Associations
  • Fellow, International Society of Barristers
  • Diplomate, American Board of Trial Advocates
  • International Association of Defense Counsel
  • Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association
  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers
  • Association of Defense Trial Attorneys
  • Defense Research Institute
Certifications:
  • Certified Civil Trial Advocate, National Board of Trial Advocacy
  • Certified Civil Trial Specialist, Minnesota State Bar Association
Education:
  • University of St. Thomas, B.A. (cum laude), 1964
  • University of Minnesota, J.D., 1967

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David M. Johnson

Duluth, MN

Admitted
  • Minnesota, 1992
  • Wisconsin, 1998
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 1992
Memberships:
  • Minnesota State and Eleventh District Bar Associations
  • Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association
  • Defense Research Institute
  • American Board of Trial Advocates
Publications:
  • Co-Author: "Taking the Offensive; How Summary Judgement Practice Can Lead Your File Preparation," Minnesota Defense, Spring 1994
  • "Cross Examination of Medical Experts," Defense Research Institute Magazine, For the Defense, February 1997
  • "Ethical Considerations in Settlements, " Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association Release Deskbook, Fourth Edition, 1998
Certifications:
  • Certified Civil Trial Specialist
Education:
  • The University of North Dakota, B.B.A., 1989
  • University of Minnesota, J.D., 1992

Born: 1966

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Jerome D. Feriancek

Duluth, MN

Practice Areas
  • Workers' Compensation
Admitted
  • Minnesota, 1993
  • Wisconsin, 1999
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 1993
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin, 1996
Memberships:
  • Minnesota State and Eleventh District Bar Associations
  • Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association
  • Defense Research Institute
Certifications:
  • Certified Civil Trial Specialist
Education:
  • Hamline University, B.A., 1989
  • William Mitchell College of Law, J.D. (cum laude), 1993

Born: 1967

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Matthew R. Thibodeau

Duluth, MN

Admitted
  • Minnesota, 1997
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 1997
Memberships:
  • Minnesota State Bar Association
  • International Association of Defense Counsel Trial Academy
  • Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association
Education:
  • University of St. Thomas, B.A., 1993
  • University of Minnesota, J.D., 1997
Language:
  • Spanish
  • Aymara
  • Quechua

Born: 1971

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David Scouton

Duluth, MN

Practice Areas
  • Toxic Torts
  • Product Liability Defense
  • Insurance Defense
  • Personal Injury Defense
  • Insurance Coverage
  • General Liability
Admitted
  • Minnesota, 2000
  • North Dakota, 2012
  • Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 2014
Memberships:
  • Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association
Education:
  • St. Cloud State University, B.S. (cum laude), 1993
  • University of Minnesota Law School, J.D., 2000

Born: 1970

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Associates



Peter Raukar

Duluth, MN

Practice Areas
  • Insurance Defense
  • Personal Injury Defense
  • Insurance Coverage
  • General Liability
  • Product Liability
  • Employment Law
  • Commercial Litigation
  • Subrogation
Admitted
  • Minnesota, 2005
  • Wisconsin, 2014
Memberships:
  • Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association
Education:
  • University of St. Thomas, B.A. Political Science, 1999
  • Rutgers University School of Law-Camden, J.D. (with honors), 2004

Born: 1976

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Paige Orcutt

Duluth, MN

Practice Areas
  • Civil Litigation
  • Insurance Defense
  • Workers' Compensation
Admitted
  • Minnesota, 2017
Memberships:
  • Minnesota State and Eleventh District Bar Associations
  • Minnesota Women Lawyers Association
Education:
  • University of Minnesota, B.A., 2013
  • University of Nebraska, J.D. (cum laude, with general honors), 2016
  • University of Nebraska, M.B.A. (Dean's List), 2016

Born: 1990

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Julie Benfield

Duluth, MN

Practice Areas
  • General Liability
  • Insurance Defense
  • Personal Injury Defense
  • Workers' Compensation
  • Construction Defect
  • Employment Law
  • Appeals
  • Litigation
Admitted
  • Minnesota, 2010
  • Wisconsin, 2015
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota, 2014
Memberships:
  • Eleventh District Bar Association
Education:
  • University of Wisconsin-Superior, B.A., 2006
  • Hamline University School of Law, J.D. (cum laude), 2010

Born: 1983

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Representative Cases

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