John W. Bussey III Senior Counsel




John W. Bussey III focuses his practice on general liability, product liability, wrongful death, medical malpractice, legal malpractice and professional negligence cases involving catastrophic loss or injury. John has extensive experience litigating premises security cases related to security guard conduct and has defended theme parks, movie theaters, business premises, shopping malls, hotels, restaurants and bars. His practice in the area of professional liability spans more than 40 years.

John’s position as a member of Wilson Elser’s National Trial Team is indicative of the high regard in which he is held by his peers. The term “a lawyer’s lawyer” best defines his commitment to mentoring, his profound respect for his profession, and his passion for the rights and confidentiality of his clients. John has been certified in Civil Trial Law by the Board of Legal Specialization and Education of The Florida Bar since the inception of the program in 1983.



Areas of Focus

John has extensive trial and arbitration experience covering a broad range of industries and legal issues; he has represented clients in more than 200 jury trials. During his career, John has worked with a variety of manufacturing clients, dealing with cases involving catastrophic loss and injury as well as complex insurance litigation, including bad faith claims.

Product Liability
John is experienced in defending product liability cases and works closely with manufacturing companies, distributors and vendors of products, as well as carriers that insure against such risks. He has handled claims across a broad spectrum of categories including consumer products, tires, motorcycle helmets, firearms, cranes, citrus equipment, pharmaceuticals, over-the-counter products, medical devices and outdoor power equipment.

Professional Liability / Errors & Omissions
John’s practice includes defense of claims for alleged professional negligence asserted against lawyers, real estate agents and brokers, life insurance and estate planning specialists, and architects and engineers. John has substantial experience in defending lawyers against a wide range of matters. He has handled various types of underlying claims in professional liability suits from general litigation and wrongful death to contract matters, real estate issues and probate matters.

Insurance / Bad Faith
John handles complex insurance litigation, defending insurers against coverage claims and related allegations of bad faith in their claims handling activities. He works closely with insurers to evaluate claim files and claim handling decisions and to assess the potential for any liability for extra-contractual damages under applicable law based on the relevant facts, culminating in an appropriate resolution strategy.

Representative Matters

Managed a class action case involving 3,000 plaintiffs resulting from a natural disaster in the state of Florida.

Successfully represented a manufacturer of outdoor power equipment, obtaining seven straight defense verdicts and one directed defense verdict.

Obtained a defense verdict in a firearms case alleging a design defect, as well as defense verdicts in citrus equipment, tire and automotive product cases.

Successful in obtaining a series of 15 summary judgments in medical device cases in Florida on a federal preemption doctrine defense.

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