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Nutter McClennen & Fish LLP
Attorneys at Law

Nelson G. Apjohn

Partner, Executive Committee
Seaport West, 155 Seaport Boulevard, Boston, MA 02210
T: 617.439.2246
F: 617.310.9246

Nelson G. Apjohn is a partner in the Litigation Department and a member of the firm's Executive Committee. His practice is concentrated in civil litigation, focusing on business litigation and products liability claims. His experience also includes litigating matters such as eminent domain, insurance, employment and executive compensation, First Amendment claims, legal malpractice defense, construction (both commercial and personal injury), trusts and estates, and various personal injury claims. Nelson has trial and appellate experience in both the state and federal courts, as well as experience in state regulatory proceedings and arbitration.

His cases include:

  • An eminent domain trial involving the Sagamore Flyover Highway Project, which was one of the top ten verdicts in Massachusetts in 2011, according to Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly. A jury awarded damages of $2.1 million to the plaintiff landowners after a two-week trial.
  • An eminent domain trial resulting in a $4.15 million verdict for the plaintiff landowner in a case involving the taking of land at the Sagamore Rotary; a verdict that Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly reported was among the top ten verdicts in Massachusetts in 2010.
  • A trial in 2010 in the Business Session of the Massachusetts Superior Court resulting in a judgment in excess of $3 million on behalf of a bank, as a secured creditor, against a construction company. Nelson also successfully argued the appeal and the bank’s cross-appeal before the Supreme Judicial Court, ultimately resulting in a judgment in excess of $7.6 million, including interest. Reading Co-operative Bank v. Suffolk Construction Company, Inc., 464 Mass. 543 (2013). Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly chose this decision as one of the most important commercial decisions of 2013. 
  • Boone v. Commerce Insurance Company, 451 Mass. 192 (2008), which Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly chose as one of the most important insurance opinions of 2008. The case was an appeal that Nelson successfully argued before the Supreme Judicial Court, reversing a summary judgment and Appeals Court affirmance.
  • The successful appeal before the Supreme Judicial Court on behalf of a Massachusetts motor vehicle insurer in a putative class action, overturning a lower court summary judgment holding that the Massachusetts standard motor vehicle policy provided collision coverage for so-called "inherent diminished value," in Given v. Commerce Insurance Company, 440 Mass. 207 (2003). Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly ranked the decision as one of the ten most important decisions of 2003.

Nelson is the chair of the Standing Advisory Committee on the Rules of Civil and Appellate Procedure of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts. He is also the president of the Boston Inn of Court for the 2015-2016 term and is a member of its Executive Committee. Nelson is a member of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee of the New England Legal Foundation, and a member of the Boston Bar Association, the International Association of Defense Counsel, and the Defense Research Institute. Nelson has lectured and served as a panelist in continuing legal education programs for civil litigation.

Nelson has authored various legal works, including Further Discovery of Expert Witnesses Under Massachusetts Rule of Civil Procedure 26, 88 Mass. L. Rev. 197 (2004), co-authoring with Superior Court Judge Patrick F. Brady the chapter “Dispositive Motions” in Massachusetts Superior Court Civil Practice Manual (Hon. T. P. Billings et al. eds., 3rd ed. 2013 and Supp. 2015), and as a contributing author to Expert Evidence, A Practitioner’s Guide to Law, Science, and the FJC Manual (Bert Black & Patrick W. Lee eds. 1997). He also published “Consider Legal Issues in Software Buys” and “Internet Property Protection Derives from an Arcane Source” in Mass High Tech. During law school, Nelson was a managing editor and articles editor of the Boston College Law Review.