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Lonnie D. Johnson, partner

Lonnie D. Johnson


Practice Areas:

  • Civil Litigation and Appeals
  • Commercial and Business Litigation
  • Construction Law and Litigation
  • Criminal Law
  • Environmental Law
  • Insurance Defense
  • Mediation and Arbitration
  • Professional Liability Defense
Top Lawyers USA, Lonnie Johnson, Indiana, 2024


LONNIE D. JOHNSON is a Senior Partner at Clendening Johnson & Bohrer, P.C. with over 30 years of experience practicing law and is also a member of The Mediation Group.   


Lonnie practices in the areas of commercial and business litigation, construction law, personal injury and insurance defense. Throughout his career Lonnie has handled cases in all Federal and Bankruptcy Courts in Indiana and most County Courts. He has accumulated forty-eight (48) reported decisions and argued before the Indiana Court of Appeals, the Indiana Supreme Court, and the United States Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.  Lonnie has authored over thirty (30) articles on civil litigation and is a frequent speaker at seminars, and has served as faculty for the North Central Region Trial Academy. He is frequently called upon to handle complex cases in Federal and State Courts outside of Indiana on a Pro Hac basis. Lonnie is an expert at trying multi-week and multi-million dollar trials; his expertise in handling of complex litigation matters has provided Lonnie and his trial team with great proficiency in conducting and managing electronic discovery as well as the administration and presentation of voluminous documentary evidence in both class-action and complex cases.

Lonnie is a member of The Mediation Group at 888 Keystone Crossing, Indianapolis, IN and has mediated over 100 cases in the areas of personal injury, property disputes, breach of contract, intellectual property, cyber fraud, breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, construction defect, probate, and securities fraud. Lonnie is a member of the Indiana Association of Mediators and The American Association of Mediators.


Indiana Super Lawyer, General Civil Litigation (2009 - 2024) (peer reviewed and selected to be in the top 5% of Indiana attorneys)

The Best Lawyers in America® (2012-2024) (selected by peers for work in the practice area of Civil Litigation) (Limited to 5% of litigation attorneys nationally)

Senior Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America (2009-2024) (limited to 0.5% of litigation attorneys nationally)

Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel (peer reviewed by Attorneys and Judges in field of Civil Litigation)

America's Top 100 Civil Defense Litigators

Top Attorneys in Indiana (Indianapolis Monthly)

10 Best High Verdict Attorneys – Personal Injury Law Attorney

America's Top 100 High Stakes Litigators

Best of the Best: Top 10 Attorney’s – Personal Injury Attorney

Attorney and Practice Magazine’s Top 10 – Personal Injury Law

America’s Top 100 Attorneys

The National Association of Distinguished Counsel – Nation’s Top One Percent

10 Best Attorneys – Indiana (American Institute of Personal Injury Lawyers)

America’s Top 100 Bet-the-Company Litigators

The Global Directory of Who’s Who – Top Lawyer

Top 10 Attorneys – Personal Injury Law (American Association of Attorney Advocates)

Top Ranking Attorney – Personal Injury Law (American Association of Attorney Advocates)

America’s Top 100 Civil Litigators

The Association of Defense Trial Attorneys

MyLegalWin (2024) – Top Civil Litigation Attorney


Lonnie is a native of Indiana and earned his J.D. Cum Laude from Indiana University, Bloomington. Lonnie’s many educational honors include an Associates Degree with Dean’s Honors from Indiana Vocational Technical College in Mechanical Drafting & Design, a B.A. in Political Science Suma Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Indiana University, Bloomington, and the Jump Memorial Scholarship award earning him a full academic law scholarship.


As a member of the Indiana State Bar Association, the Indianapolis Bar Association, and the Monroe County Bar Association, Lonnie is actively involved in the Indiana legal profession. He served as the Chairperson for the Litigation Section of the Indiana State Bar Association and was honored with its Civility Award in 2013. He is a Past President, Board Member and the Construction Law Section Leader of the Defense Trial Counsel of Indiana, and he was installed as a Diplomat of the Indiana Defense Trial Counsel in 2016.

On the national level, Lonnie has been active in the Defense Research Institute, serving as Expert Chairperson for the Construction Committee and honored with the Defense Research Exceptional Performance Citation Award. Lonnie has been inducted into, and is member of, the Association of Defense Trial Attorneys (ADTA), the Federation of Defense and Corporate Counsel (FDCC), and Litigation Counsel of America. He is also a member of the Claims and Litigation Management Alliance.


Of Stare Decisis, Dissents and Asbestos Litigation, Indiana Lawyer (2016)

Lessons Learned from a Law Merger During a Pandemic, Indiana Lawyer (2020)

Disclosure Under the Federal Rules, ALFA (1993)

Why Me? - Challenges in Construction Law, Ind. CLE (1995)

Indiana Case Update, Transportation Update ALFA (1996)

Attorney Conflicts of Interest in Indiana, IND. CLE (1997)

The Need and Use of Expert Evidence to Prove Non-Economic Damages in Personal Injury Cases, IND. CLE (1999)

Contract Finally Means What It Says, Indiana Lawyer (2001)

Indiana Construction Law Update, DTCI CLE (2003)

Application of Indemnity and Additional Insured Provisions in Construction Contracts: Who Ultimately Pays for Personal Injuries to Workers? Indiana Civil Litigation Review (2004)

Contractor Liability for Injuries Sustained by Workers, Indiana Lawyer (2004)

Time is Money in Construction, Indiana Lawyer (2005)

Ex Parte Interviews and Ethical Concerns, Indiana Lawyer (2005)

Construction Law Case Update, DTCI CLE (2005)

“Acceleration Claims” Can Lead to Recovery, For The Defense (2006)

Schedule Related Claims, Ind. CLE (2007)

Admissibility and Use of Biomechanical Expert Evidence in Defense of Personal Injury Claims, Indiana Civil Litigation Review (2007)

Indiana Franchise Law, Indiana Civil Litigation Review (2008)

Breach of Contract Claims in Construction Cases, Indiana Civil Litigation Review (2008)

Construction Defenses – Claims and Coverages, Chapter 7, Defense Research Institute (2008)

Expert Depositions, Monroe County Bench and Bar Conf. (2013)

Advanced personal Injury ICLEF (2013)

Wrongful Death Actions, ICLEF (2014)

Contractors May Bring Suit to Challenge Award on Public Project, Indiana Litigator, ISBA (2007)

Insurance Coverage for Construction Defects, ICLEF (2012)

Bad Faith Claims Against Insurers, Indiana Insurance Institute (2012)

Two Parties…One Oath, Ind. Lawyer (2012)


Jill Polet, et al. v. Live Nation Worldwide, Inc., et al. Represented Local 30 with the International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employees in a personal injury lawsuit as well as claims brought by the State of Indiana for alleged IOSHA violations. Local 30 constructed the stage and canopy for a concert at the Indiana State Fairgrounds to be performed by the band Sugarland. High winds caused the stage to collapse on the audience. Fifty-four plaintiffs brought actions for wrongful death and personal injury against Local 30 and multiple other defendants involved in the concert. Many of the claims involved catastrophic brain and spinal injuries. Lonnie was appointed by the Court as defense liaison counsel and worked with liaison counsel for plaintiffs to manage the case.  Lonnie also took the lead in retaining and deposing experts. As liaison counsel, Lonnie was instrumental in putting together a $39,000,000 settlement based on a combination of mediation and arbitrations.

Murdock & Sons Constr., Inc. v. Goheen Gen. Constr., Inc. Represented a general contractor in a lawsuit arising from construction of a maximum-security prison in Indiana. The project fell behind schedule and the masonry subcontractor made multiple requests for an extension of time and the extensions were denied. The subcontractor left the job and filed a multi-million dollar claim for constructive acceleration based on the theory that by denying extensions, the general contractor and the State of Indiana had in effect ordered the work to be accelerated. The general contractor filed a multi-million dollar counterclaim for the costs to repair the defective work of the subcontractor, the costs in completing the project, and for delay damages. The case was tried in Federal District Court over six (6) days, and the general contractor prevailed on both Murdock’s claim and its own counterclaim. Subsequently, the judgment in favor of Goheen was upheld by the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. Murdock & Sons Constr., Inc. v. Goheen Gen. Constr., Inc., 461 F.3d 837 (7th Cir. 2006).

Gresser v. Dow Chemical. Represented termiticide applicator in a case brought by two young plaintiffs claiming severe brain damage from exposure to chlorpyrifos. Over thirty depositions of treating physicians, experts and lay witnesses were taken, and numerous leading experts in the areas of toxicology, chemical application, epidemiology, psychiatry, neuropsychology, radiology, life care planning, economic damages, and industry standard of care were retained by the parties. The case was tried for five (5) weeks before a jury and plaintiffs’ counsel requested the jury to award ten (10) million in compensatory damages and additional punitive damages. The jury returned a defense verdict, and the verdict was upheld on appeal. Gresser v. Dow Chemical, 989 N.E.2d 339 (Ind. Ct. App. 2013).

Dorman v. Osmose. Represented manufacturer of treated lumber against claims brought by a construction worker for serious injuries alleged to have been caused by exposure to arsenic present in the lumber. The case involved complex medical and scientific issues. After a two-week trial, the jury returned a defense verdict, which was upheld by the Indiana Court of Appeals. Dorman v. Osmose, Inc., 873 N.E.2d 1102 (Ind. Ct. App. 2007).

Pardue v. Perdue. Represented Perdue Turkey Farms against claims brought by farmers alleging runoff from a facility polluted a stream, thereby injuring and killing livestock. The case involved complex issues of equine science, veterinary science, toxicology and hydrology. A judgment for the defendant was entered after a five-day trial and upheld by the Indiana Court of Appeals. Pardue v. Perdue, 925 N E.2d 482 (Ind. Ct. App. 2010).

Gilead Sciences, Inc. v. Allied Health, et al. Filed an action in Miami Federal Court seeking $43 million dollars in damages from forty-nine (49) healthcare businesses for alleged fraud and trademark violations in the distribution of Gilead’s anti-AIDS medications distributed in Southwest Florida. Clendening Johnson & Bohrer represented six of the defendants. The case involved complicated legal issues arising from intellectual property law and healthcare regulations and numerous complex discovery disputes and injunctions. Over 100 depositions were taken over a year and a half prior to settlement.

Med. Informatics Eng'g, Inc. v. Orthopaedics NE., P.C. This case involved novel issues arising from alleged cyber attacks and the reverse engineering of licensed software along with defamation claims. A hospital entered into a license agreement to use medical software in its operations. The software company became suspicious that employees of the hospital were reverse engineering the licensed software to form a competing business, and the owner of the company “hacked” into the hospital’s system and altered the program in attempt to disrupt the alleged reverse engineering. The software company brought intellectual property claims against the hospital, and the hospital counterclaimed. Clendening Johnson and Bohrer represented the hospital in the case, which involved extensive discovery and complex issues of law and procedure. The firm obtained a favorable settlement.

Jones v. American Express. Represented plaintiff in a securities fraud action against a major financial institution in an arbitration action.

Pizza X v. Hotbox. Represented a food business in a franchise trademark and copyright dispute in Federal Court.

Camp v. Fifth Third Bank. Represented plaintiffs in an action for breach of fiduciary duty against a major banking institution based on its failure to diversify stock holdings of plaintiffs.

Abbott v. Wal-Mart Stores East, LP – Represented design architect company that designed Wal-Mart stores against wrongful death and catastrophic personal injury claims. A crew of electricians were working in the transformer room with the power on when an electrician accidentally fumbled a metal tool onto bus bars, creating an arc flash which resulted in multiple serious injury and death claims. Plaintiff’s theory of liability against the architect was that the electrical system should have been designed with a fault current detection system which would have tripped so quickly as to have prevented the arc flash. The firm obtained a favorable settlement after filing dispositive motions supported by complex expert evidence.

SEI v. Schomberg. SEI operated a large factory in Indiana and specialized in manufacturing assembly line parts. Several high-ranking managers left the company and opened a competing factory. Upon leaving, the former managers took SEI information and specifications. Clendening Johnson & Bohrer represented SEI in filing a lawsuit against the former managers for breach of fiduciary duty, violation of trade secrets, and other intellectual property claims. Extensive discovery was conducted by the parties and the case proceeded to trial in Federal Bankruptcy Court, with the case settling during trial.

ERISA Claims. Has represented both plaintiffs and defendants on claims brought pursuant to the Employer Retirement Income Security Act, including a case brought against a private college alleging fraud in the administration of the pension plan. Likewise, Clendening Johnson & Bohrer brought an action on behalf of an employee for breach of fiduciary duty based on mismanagement of an EIRSA plan.

CERCLA and Indiana Environmental Legal Action Act. Has assisted insurers and overseen the remediation of polluted sites and represented both plaintiffs and defendants in cases brought under federal and state environmental protection laws, including a multi-million dollar case representing an environmental contractor accused of exacerbating chemical leakage during an environmental remediation at a former industrial site.

Covenant not to compete. Has represented both plaintiffs and defendants in multiple cases involving covenants not to compete in various kinds of professional, sales, and business contracts.

Construction Defect Claims. Has represented numerous defendants in cases involving alleged defects in the construction of commercial buildings and residences.

Catastrophic Injury Claims. Has represented defendants in numerous high-stake cases involving traumatic head injuries and spinal injuries.

Stockholder Fiduciary Duty Cases. Has represented numerous plaintiffs and defendants in cases involving alleged breaches of stockholders fiduciary duty.

Asbestos Cases. Has represented several companies as defendants in hundreds of asbestos lawsuits.

Zoning Cases. Has represented numerous companies in zoning appeals and actions against municpalities for violation of the Fair Housing Act and Americans with Disabilities Act based on zoning decisions.


Frame Station, Inc. v. The Foundry at 304, LLC, 23A-CT-1426 (Ind. Ct. App. 2024) (Addressing issues regarding the use of obstruction of an easement)

BMI Properties v. Daewoong, LLC, 23A-PL-988 (Ind. Ct. App. 2023) (Holding in a construction defect case allowing owners of a commercial property to sue contractors absent privity of contract for defective work that poses an “imminent risk” of personal injury)

Wamsley v. Tree City Vill., 108 N.E.3d 334 (Ind. 2018) (Establishing standard for a finding of excusable neglect and vacating default judgments in cases where insureds failed to forward complaint to insurer)

Bellwether Props., LLC v. Duke Energy Ind., Inc., 87 N.E.3d 462 (Ind. 2017) (Addressing statute of limitation issues in class action lawsuit for inverse condemnation of property)

Kramer v. Kramer, 27 N.E.3d 270 (Ind. 2015) (Stockholder breach of fiduciary duty case)

Young v. Gen. Acceptance Corp., 770 N.E.2d 298 (Ind. 2002) (Establishing case law in class action lawsuit holding that the exclusive remedy for stockholders in a public company is the exercise of dissenters’ rights and, therefore, majority shareholders owe no fiduciary duty to minority shareholders)

Consolidated Rail Corp., Inc. v. Lewellen, 682 N.E.2d 779 (Ind. 1997) (Establishing standards for interpreting property titles in class action lawsuit over disputed title of railroad property)

Cross DeBoer LLC v. Seigel, No. 22A-PL-1214, 2022 WL 17484304 (Ind. Ct. App. Dec. 7, 2022) (Breach of contract claim involving real property)

DeVane v. Arch Wood Prod., Inc., 197 N.E.3d 343 (Ind. Ct. App. 2022) (Holding in a treated lumber case that claim in equity was in essence a product liability claim and, therefore, barred by the Indiana Statute of Repose)

Duke Energy Ind., LLC v. Bellwether Props., LLC, 192 N.E.3d 1003 (Ind. Ct. App. 2022) (Addressing issues in condemnation and eminent domain class action case)

Wamsley v. Tree City Vill., 167 N.E.3d 698 (Ind. Ct. App. 2021) (Affirming summary judgment in favor of defendant landlord in case where a tenant shot another tenant on the grounds that the landlord owed no duty to tenants to protect them from each other)

KMC, LLC v. E. Heights Utils., Inc., 144 N.E.3d 773 (Ind. Ct. App. 2020) (Upholding summary judgment in favor of utility company arising from property damage to a warehouse on issue of duty)

Hamilton v. Hamilton, 132 N.E.3d 428 (Ind. Ct. App. 2019) (Pension dispute involving evidentiary issues)

Wamsley v. Tree City Vill., 95 N.E.3d 534 (Ind. Ct. App. 2018) (Involving issue of default judgment based on excusable neglect on part of insured)

Marten Transp., Ltd. v. Lucas, 87 N.E.3d 1164 (Ind. Ct. App. 2017) (Appeal of numerous issues in a jury trial arising from truck accident)

ABC Radiology, P.C. v. Gearhart, 69 N.E.3d 545 (Ind. Ct. App. 2017) (Holding that claim arising from clerical error in entering medical data did not constitute an independent tort outside of Indiana’s Malpractice Act)

Bellwether Props., LLC v. Duke Energy Ind., LLC, 59 N.E.3d 1037 (Ind. Ct. App. 2016) (Involving application of statute of limitations in a class action lawsuit for inverse condemnation)

Kramer v. Kramer, 49 N.E.3d 196 (Ind. Ct. App. 2016) (Breach of stockholder fiduciary duty case)

Bloomington Police Dep't v. Stone Belt, Inc., 32 N.E.3d 284 (Ind. Ct. App. 2015) (Court order requiring police department to provide unredacted reports within Freedom of Information Act)

Kramer v. Kramer, 13 N.E.3d 559 (Ind. Ct. App. 2014) (Breach of stockholder fiduciary duty case)

Gresser v. Dow Chemical, 989 N.E.2d 339 (Ind. Ct. App. 2013) (Reviewing of summary judgment orders in alleged head injury case arising from chemical exposure)

Kramer v. Kramer, 13 N.E.3d 554 (Ind. Ct. App. 2012) (Fiduciary duty and breach of contract case)

Kramer v Kramer, 948 N.E.2d 873 (Ind. Ct. App. 2011) (Fiduciary duty and breach of contract case)

Demming v. Underwood, 943 N.E.2d 878 (Ind. Ct. App. 2010) (Addressing issue of a realtor’s fiduciary duty to a client)

Pardue v. Perdue, 925 N E.2d 482 (Ind. Ct. App. 2010) (Affirming defense verdict in environmental case alleging damage to livestock from stream pollution)

Dorman v. Osmose, Inc., 873 N.E.2d 1102 (Ind. Ct. App. 2007) (Upholding defense jury verdict in case alleging serious injury from exposure to arsenic treated lumber)

Bozarth v. Todd & Langley Const., Inc., 857 N.E.2d 449 (Ind. Ct. App. 2006) (Upholding summary judgment in favor of defendant in case alleging that contractor assumed a non-delegable duty for workplace safety)

Longardner v. Citizens Gas & Coke Util., 856 N.E.2d 796 (Ind. Ct. App. 2006) (Addressing issue of duty where plaintiffs alleged injury from exposure to natural gas)

Shaw v. Baxter, 825 N.E.2d 54 (Ind. Ct. App. 2005) (Affirming a jury verdict in case involving faulty construction of water wells)

Dorman v. Osmose, Inc., 782 N.E.2d 463, Prod. Liab. Rep. (CCH) P 16,494 (Ind. Ct. App. 2003) (Involving issue of application of discovery rule to statute of limitation for injury alleged to have been caused by exposure to arsenic treated lumber)

Rooksby v. Lante Earnest and Klineman, 783 N.E.2d 809 (Ind. Ct. App. 2003) (Addressing duties owed by partners in closely held corporations)

Young v. Gen. Acceptance Corp., 738 N.E.2d 1079 (Ind. Ct. App. 2000) (Holding in class action lawsuit brought by minority shareholders against majority shareholders in public corporation holding that minority shareholders only right was to exercise dissenters’ rights)

Yater v. Coy, 681 N.E.2d 232 (Ind. Ct. App. 1997) (Affirming summary judgment in favor of defendant’s attorney in a malicious prosecution and abuse of process case)

Consolidated Rail Corp., Inc. v. Lewellen, 666 N.E.2d 958 (Ind. Ct. App. 1996) (Holding in class action lawsuit brought to dispute railroad’s title in which court established standards for review of property titles)

Berry v. Am. Standard, Inc., 888 N.E.2d 740 (Ill. Ct. App. 2008) (Ruling in asbestos case on issue of admissibility of deposition testimony)

Murdock & Sons Constr., Inc. v. Goheen Gen. Constr., Inc., 461 F.3d 837 (7th Cir. 2006) (Holding by Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals upholding trial verdict in a multi-million dollar construction case arising from construction of maximum security prison involving issues of defective work, delay claims and claims for constructive acceleration)

Palm v. Taurus Int'l Mfg., Inc., No. 3:22-CV-337 DRL-MGG, 2022 WL 17714600 (N.D. Ind. Dec. 15, 2022) (Ruling on motion to dismiss claims brought under Florida law in a product liability case alleging a defective gun)

England v. Jackson Cty. Pub. Libr., 596 F. Supp. 3d 1164 (S.D. Ind. 2022) (Federal District Court ruling on case involving application of First and Fourteenth Amendment to a patron’s right to access a public library)

Ratliff v. Todd/Johnson, No. 4:18-CV-118-RLY-DML, 2019 WL 2329324 (S.D. Ind. May 31, 2019) (Addressing issues regarding governmental immunity in action brought against Judge and attorneys involved in domestic case)

Atkinson v. Skyline Servs., Inc., No. 218CV00491JMSMJD, 2018 WL 6674311 (S.D. Ind. Dec. 18, 2018) (Ruling of Federal District Court dismissing claims brought alleging personal injury from defective service elevator)

Lacy v. Time Dispatch Servs., Inc., No. 112CV00819LJMDKL, 2016 WL 6714155 (S.D. Ind. Nov. 15, 2016) (Ruling of Federal District Court in case involving interpretation of brokerage agreements regarding operating authority of trucking lines involved in a serious accident)

Leathermon v. Grandview Mem'l Gardens, Inc., No. 4:07-CV-137-SEB-WGH, 2010 WL 1381893 (S.D. Ind. Mar. 31, 2010) (Ruling of Federal District Court granting defendants’ motion to disqualify plaintiffs’ counsel due to conflict of interest in his class action lawsuit arising from alleged defects in cemetery coffins)

E.E.O.C. v. RMG Commc'ns, LLC, No. 1:08-CV-947WTLTAB, 2009 WL 3569277 (S.D. Ind. Oct. 27, 2009) (Employment discrimination case)

Leathermon v. Grandview Mem'l Gardens, Inc., No. 4:07-CV-00137SEBWGH, 2009 WL 301923 (S.D. Ind. Jan. 22, 2009) (Involving federal jurisdiction over class action lawsuit arising from alleged defects in cemetery coffins)

Med. Informatics v. Orthopedic Ne., 2008 U.S. District. Lexis 2008 (N.D. Ind. 2008) (Rulings in case arising from software copyright and trademark claims)

First Merchants Tr. Co. v. Wal-Mart Stores E., LP, 630 F. Supp. 2d 964, 965 (S.D. Ind. 2008) (Rulings of Federal District Court in case arising from personal injuries and wrongful death caused by electrocution during the construction of a Wal-Mart store)

Selective Ins. Co. of the Se. v. Cagnoni Dev., LLC, No. 106-CV-0760-DFH-TAB, 2008 WL 126950 (S.D. Ind. Jan. 10, 2008) (Ruling of Federal District Court in an insurance coverage case arising from faulty work performed on warehouse)

Med. Informatics Eng'g, Inc. v. Orthopaedics Ne., P.C., 458 F. Supp. 2d 716 (N.D. Ind. 2006) (Ruling of Federal District Court on defamation claims in intellectual property case)

Current Employment Position

  • Partner
American Association of Attorney Advocates | Top Ranking Attorney 2022 Member | top ranking personal injury law attorney