Overview Experience Events News Intelligence Trent M. Johnson Partner tjohnson foley.com Download vCard Trent M. Johnson is a partner and litigation attorney with Foley & Lardner LLP. He focuses primarily on distribution and franchise litigation and general commercial and complex litigation. He also has significant experience navigating e-discovery issues in complex commercial litigation, including in antitrust and RICO disputes. Mr. Johnson has concentrated on product distribution law since the beginning of his career at Foley, and now devotes the vast majority of his practice to counseling manufacturing clients on all aspects of their relationships with distributors. Mr. Johnson routinely advises his clients – from Fortune 500 companies to smaller private organizations – on issues involving channel structure (including dual-distribution networks), drafting key contractual provisions, state and federal law compliance, contract administration and enforcement, e-commerce issues, distributor performance, negotiating relationship modifications (both individual and system-wide), transfers of dealership control, product or territory withdrawals, product pricing, discount and rebate programs, product repurchase disputes, and other issues. Also, to the extent clients need to disengage entirely from a distributor, Mr. Johnson has substantial experience litigating and trying distributor terminations in state and federal court and arbitration. Key to Mr. Johnson’s practice is staying ahead of statutory changes and their impact on manufacturers. Mr. Johnson was the creator of the interactive version of Foley’s “Smiley Face Map,” a tool designed to assist in-house counsel in assessing their risk of liability under the panoply of state dealer protection statutes. Thought Leadership Mr. Johnson speaks and writes frequently in the area of distribution and franchise and complex commercial litigation. He is a co-editor for Foley’s Product Distribution Law Guide and the Wisconsin chapter of Business Torts – A Fifty State Guide, a litigation reference guide for corporate in-house counsel (Aspen Publishers, Inc.). His recent publications and presentations include: The WFDL Is Broader Than You Think – Lessons from Golf Pros (Article, The National Law Review, July 2017) Update on New Hampshire’s “Dealer Bill of Rights”: What Equipment Manufacturers Need To Know (Article, The National Law Review, January 2016) Marketing Challenges for Equipment Manufacturers (Presentation, Farm Equipment Manufacturers Association Annual Convention, 2015) The Buy-Back Problem (Presentation, Distribution and Franchise Seminar, 2015) Termination – You Make The Call (Presentation, Distribution and Franchise Seminar, 2014) Five Things Never To Say (Or Email) To Distributors (Ag Innovator, 2014) Lawn Mowers and Wheel Barrows are Now Motor Vehicles In New Hampshire (Lexology, 2013) The Changing Landscape of Dealer and Franchise Regulation (Presentation, Farm Equipment Manufacturers Association Annual Convention, 2013) Termination: Laying the Groundwork, Making the Case (Presentation, Distribution and Franchise Seminar, 2013) The Elements of E-Discovery (Presentation, National Bar Association Annual Convention, 2012) Declaratory Judgments As A Strategic Weapon: Sometimes the Best Defense Is A Good Offense (Presentation, Distribution and Franchise Seminar, 2012) Regulation of the Dealer Relationship – What has Changed In 20 Years (Presentation, Distribution and Franchise Seminar, 2011) Legal Considerations In Marketing Through Distributors (Presentation, SolarThermal Conference, 2011) Baby Would I Lie, False Advertising, Social Media and Legal Remedies (Presentation, Business Litigation Seminar, 2011) 1st Circuit Stands Firm on Notice Pleading Standard for FRCA Claims (Lexology, 2011) Case Study: Bateman v. AMC (Law360, 2010) Education Mr. Johnson received his law degree (J.D., cum laude, 2004) from the University of Wisconsin Law School. During law school, he served as an extern to District Judge Barbara Crabb, chief judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin. He graduated from Miami University in 1998 with a bachelor’s degree in philosophy, Spanish and psychology. Community Engagement Mr. Johnson is a member of several professional and charitable organizations, including the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, Midwest Bikeshare, Inc., and the Manufacturing Diversity Institute, serving on the board of directors of each.