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William J. Kelleher
William J. Kelleher is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross (A.B. 1967) and the U.C.L.A. School of Law (J.D. 1970). He is admitted to practice before the courts of Maine, the United States District Court for the District of Maine, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and the United States Supreme Court. Will and his wife reside in Rome. They have two daughters, one a Physical Therapist and the second a teacher at a Charter School. They have two grandsons. Will enjoys golf and reading. He and his wife are avid fans of the Red Sox, Patriots and Celtics.
Will began his legal career as an Assistant Attorney General for the State of Maine where he defended the State in civil rights litigation (42 U.S.C. §1983 actions) and represented many State departments and agencies, including the Maine Human Rights Commission. Will successfully tried and defended on appeal Maine’s landmark employment discrimination case, Maine Human Rights Commission vs. City of Auburn, 408 A.2d. 1253 (Me. 1979), which required the City to employ its first female police officer. Will also successfully tried Maine’s first physical handicap employment discrimination case that caused the Law Court to adopt his construction of the bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) defense and to declare that as a matter of law, the employer failed to establish that defense as to any of the individual plaintiffs. Maine Human Rights Commission vs. Canadian Pacific Ltd., 458 A.2d. 225 (Me. 1983).
Since 1982, Will has concentrated his practice in the area of insurance defense. He has obtained jury verdicts for his clients in more than 200 trials. Will has briefed and argued on appeal scores of cases before the Maine Law Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit and the United States Supreme Court. He has obtained precedent setting rulings in many areas of insurance law including Levine v. State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. Co., 843 A.2d 24 (Me. 2004) (insurer entitled to offset uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) benefits by the amount that was available to passenger under tortfeasor's insurance, even though passenger failed to timely collect on tortfeasor's policy), Greenvall v. Maine Mut. Fire Ins. Co., 788 A.2d 165 (Me. 2001) (amendment raising cap for damages under Maine Wrongful Death Act did not apply retroactively), and Hewitt v. Bahmueller, 584 A.2d 664 (Me. 1991) (non settling defendants entitled to reduce verdict against them (to $0) by amount paid by settling defendants).
In 2007, he merged the firm he founded in 1986, The Law Offices of William J. Kelleher, PA, with Marden Dubord Bernier and Stevens. He has broad, litigation honed expertise in virtually all areas of civil litigation including automobile casualty, premises liability, construction disputes, personal injury, commercial liability, and statutory liabilities including timber trespass and animal injury cases. The Maine Trial Lawyers Association has repeatedly asked him to serve as a faculty member of its celebrated College of Trial Advocacy.