James W. Matthews



James W. Matthews is a partner and litigation lawyer with Foley & Lardner LLP. He focuses his practice on trying complex business disputes for a variety of businesses, including manufacturers of pharmaceutical products and medical devices. Mr. Matthews has experience as lead counsel to one of the world’s largest generic drug manufacturers in the nationwide Average Wholesale Price litigation. He coordinated the defense of more than 50 separate lawsuits pending in state and federal courts around the country, including a qui tam action under the Federal False Claims Act and numerous civil enforcement actions brought by state attorneys general alleging violations of a variety of state statutes, including state false claims acts.

Mr. Matthews has frequently represented life sciences and technology companies in commercial disputes pending in courts and before arbitrators throughout the country. In the past ten years, his practice has included the representation of major generic pharmaceutical companies in ANDA litigation, antitrust actions, contract disputes, and civil enforcement actions. Mr. Matthews has also represented medical device companies and internet service providers in arbitrations and in patent actions in federal court.

Prior to joining Foley, Mr. Matthews was a partner with K&L Gates. He also was appointed Special Assistant District Attorney for Middlesex County for an interim period. For two years after law school, he clerked for the Hon. John E. Conway, U.S. District Judge for the District of New Mexico.


Mr. Matthews has been selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® in the field of Commercial Litigation (2023), and was also peer Review Rated as AV® Preeminent™, the highest performance rating in Martindale-Hubbell's peer review rating system. In 2016, The Legal 500 recognized Mr. Matthews for his work in healthcare – life sciences. He was also selected for inclusion in the Massachusetts Super Lawyers® list (2006, 2008 – 2013). He was elected to membership in the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC ), This invitation-only membership is comprised of the world’s leading corporate and insurance lawyers and insurance executives.

Representative Experience

  • Lead national counsel for a NYSE listed generic drug manufacturer and its affiliates in government enforcement actions pending in state and federal courts throughout the country. Responsible for coordinating the defense of civil actions under the Federal False Claims Act and analogous state statutes pending in federal court and in state courts in Alabama, Alaska, Idaho, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, New York, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah and Wisconsin. During the course of this representation Mr. Matthews successfully defended the Company in a three-week jury trial in state court in Alabama, obtained a favorable settlement of the action by the Attorney General of Hawaii on the night before jury selection, settled the Massachusetts Attorney General’s action against the Company approximately one month before trial on terms favorable to the Company, and negotiated a multi-jurisdictional settlement favorable to the Company in connection with several of the pending actions. 
  • Represents NYSE listed generic drug manufacturer in DESI Drug qui tam litigation pending in federal court alleging violations of the Federal False Claims Act. 
  • Obtained a $15.7 million patent infringement verdict for NYSE listed medical device manufacturer, following a seven-day jury trial and two days of deliberations (This verdict is listed as #1 by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly in “Top Verdicts of 2009”). 
  • Obtained summary judgment for publicly traded generic drug manufacturer in a claim for breach of contract and unfair trade practices where plaintiffs sought recovery of actual damages equal to $60 million; successfully defended appeal. 
  • Represented a NYSE listed medical device manufacturer in three-week arbitration, obtained $30 million award on behalf of client. 
  • Represented a generic drug manufacturer in antitrust action resulting from defendants’ attempted enforcement of invalid and unenforceable patent, obtained settlement resulting in client reporting $100 million gain in publicly filed financial statements. 
  • Represented a hedge fund in business dispute with third party administrator. 
  • Represented a NYSE listed medical device manufacturer in breach of contract dispute. 
  • Represented venture capital firm in successful defense of efforts to obtain control of company from entrenched founders/managers. 
  • Obtained substantial judgment for internet search engine in multi-day arbitration claiming right to purchase-price adjustment in connection with corporate acquisition. 
  • Represented developer in breach of contract and unfair trade practices action, obtained order dismissing counterclaims and obtained multimillion dollar settlement for client on first day of scheduled trial.

Thought Leadership

Mr. Matthews is a frequent speaker on topics covering enterprise risk management; litigation prevention, assessment and management; arbitration of complex business disputes; and depositions.


Mr. Matthews earned his law degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School (J.D., cum laude, 1990). He received his bachelor’s degree from Bennington College (1983).

Admissions and Professional Memberships

Mr. Matthews is admitted to practice in Massachusetts. He is a member of the Massachusetts Bar Association, and the American and Boston Bar Associations’ Health Care Law, Litigation, and Business Law Sections. Mr. Matthews is also a member of the Defense Research Institute and its Drug and Medical Devices, Medical and Health Care Law, Construction Law, and ADR Sections.