Not Your Ordinary Litigation Law Firm
Photo of James W. Grable, Jr.

James W. Grable, Jr.

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Practice Areas:

  • Complex Federal Criminal and Civil Litigation


Jim Grable focuses his practice on complex federal criminal and civil litigation, handling trial and appellate matters in federal and state courts. He is included among the Top 10 lawyers in Upstate New York by Super Lawyers®, where he is listed for criminal defense, personal injury, and civil litigation. and Best Lawyers in America® has designated him “Lawyer of the Year in Criminal Defense: General Practice in Buffalo” in 2016, 2018, 2020, 2022, and 2024. Jim is among the “Legal Elite of Western New York.”

Jim’s practice is diverse and wide-ranging. He has represented multi-national corporations in criminal investigations and civil disputes, and impoverished individuals in assigned criminal and civil matters. He has tried numerous cases to verdict in federal and state court, including months-long complex federal trials. Examples of his diverse experience include:

  • Winning a six-week jury trial in New York State Supreme Court defending a successful businessman against numerous claims and a demand for a seven-figure award.
  • Obtaining numerous seven-figure damages resolutions for clients wrongfully injured by the acts or omissions of others.
  • Conducting an internal investigation for a company concerned about potential environmental violations and drafting a compliance plan that the company adopted to avoid future environmental issues and protect its workers and its community. 
  • Winning an acquittal at trial of a medical professional criminally charged with harming his patient, obtaining a sealing order protecting the client from additional public disclosure of the accusations and his identity, and then obtaining a full dismissal of all state licensing charges against his client.
  • Securing dismissal before a federal trial of discrimination allegations against a police commissioner, and obtaining appellate affirmation of the dismissal of all causes of action.
  • Obtaining dismissal of all criminal charges against a teacher accused of sexual contact with several students, winning a sealing order barring additional public disclosure of the allegations, then obtaining a civil settlement to compensate the falsely accused teacher for damage to his reputation.
  • Winning a commercial arbitration by proving that the party claiming a breach of contract had broken its promises, to prevail against breach of contract and defamation claims and to obtain a favorable monetary judgment on a counterclaim in favor of the business that had been sued.
  • Preventing the imposition of federal or state criminal charges against an accountant and CFO, and successfully representing the business professional before the Securities and Exchange Commission to avoid adverse SEC action by the agency.
  • Obtaining acquittals in various criminal trials after successfully defending his clients against criminal charges.

Jim was elected a Fellow of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers for his trial work. That association limits its membership to less than 1/10 of 1% of the lawyers practicing in the United States, and Fellowship in the Academy is by invitation only after an extremely rigorous vetting process that includes peer and judicial review.

Before practicing, Jim served a two-year term as confidential law clerk to the Hon. William M. Skretny, United States District Court Judge for the Western District of New York.

Jim has amassed extensive knowledge and experience in the area of sentencing, and in 2011 was appointed by the United States Sentencing Commission to serve as a voting member of the Sentencing Commission’s Practitioners Advisory Group, where he served multiple terms.

Jim strongly believes in the responsibility of lawyers to serve those who cannot afford representation. He serves on the Criminal Justice Act Emeritus Panel in the United States District Court for the Western District of New York, where he represents impoverished individuals facing criminal charges. The Judges of the United States District Court for the Western District of New York awarded Jim the Criminal Justice Act Award in 2019 in recognition of and “appreciation for distinguished criminal defense work representing indigent defendants” before the court “and for consistently providing stellar and zealous advocacy to ensure that each criminal defendant receives a full and fair defense without regard to financial circumstances.” Jim’s work trying a federal civil case on behalf of a prison inmate resulted in the federal district court awarding him its Special Service Award for his “outstanding pro bono counsel representation and dedication” in 2006.

Jim previously served as an officer on the board of directors of the New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. He also has served as an adjunct professor of trial technique at the State University of New York at Buffalo Law School. He served for several years as the Board Chair of the Board of Trustees of St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute, his alma mater.

Jim earned his J.D. with honors from the State University of New York at Buffalo Law School, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Buffalo Law Review. Jim earned his B.A. magna cum laude from the State University of New York at Buffalo, where he was a University Honors Scholar and graduated Phi Beta Kappa. In 2023, the University at Buffalo Law Alumni Association honored Jim with its Distinguished Alumnus Award for his “leadership by example as a private practitioner.”

Did You Know? Jim his wife Laura are the proud parents of four children and two rescue dogs, and in his younger days Jim helped coach youth baseball, hockey, and basketball teams.


  • State University of New York, Buffalo School of Law, Buffalo, New York
    • J.D.
    • Honors: cum laude
  • State University of New York, Buffalo, New York
    • B.A.
    • Honors: magna cum laude
    • Honors: Phi Beta Kappa


  • State University of New York at Buffalo Law School Alumni Association 2023 Distinguished Alumnus Award for private practice
  • Upstate New York Super Lawyers Top 10 (since 2022), listed as a Super Lawyer since 2009
  • Best Lawyers in America (2011-present) (listed for Personal Injury Litigation – Plaintiffs; and Lawyer of the Year in Criminal Defense: General Practice in Buffalo 2016, 2018, 2020, 2022, 2024)
  • Legal Elite of Western New York
  • Buffalo Business First, Who’s Who in the Law
  • Special Service Award Winner, United States District Court, WDNY
  • Criminal Justice Act Award Winner, United States District Court, WDNY
  • Martindale-Hubbell, AV rated
  • Editor-in-Chief, Buffalo Law Review
  • Robert J. Connelly Award, State University of New York at Buffalo Law School
  • Carlos C. Alden Award, Buffalo Law Review

Professional Associations

  • Fellow, International Academy of Trial Lawyers
  • Life Member (and former Vice President), New York State Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Board Chair (2021-2024), St. Joseph's Collegiate Institute Board of Trustees
  • Former Voting Member, United States Sentencing Commission’s Practitioners Advisory Group
  • Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America
  • Member, National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • American Bar Association
  • New York State Bar Association
  • Bar Association of Erie County
  • Former Adjunct Professor of Trial Technique, State University of New York at Buffalo Law School
  • Former Director, State University of New York at Buffalo Law School Alumni Association
  • Former Vice President, St. Gregory the Great School Athletic Association