Joseph F. Halloran - Shareholder

Phone number: 
(651) 644-4710
(651) 644-5904

Joe has an AV Preeminent® Martindale Hubbell® rating.

Joe represents tribes in a broad array of matters, including litigation, cultural resources protection, real property, intellectual property, governance, regulation, business and finance, legislative affairs, and Indian child welfare. He has also served as in-house general counsel and is a qualified neutral mediator and arbitrator under Rule 114 of the Minnesota Rules of Practice for the District Courts. Throughout his career, Joe has represented tribal gaming regulatory authorities in all aspects of tribal gaming regulation, including internal governance and regulatory structure, compliance and enforcement efforts, litigation and administrative proceedings relating to those activities, and intergovernmental affairs at the state and federal level.

Joe also represents tribes in real-property acquisition and trust-transfer efforts involving bare land, land with housing, and land slated for housing or commercial uses and exchanges, rights-of-way re-conveyances, interagency transfers, and transfers of fractional interests.

In addition, Joe represents tribes in intellectual property protection, including service and trademarks, and has been active in enforcing clients rights against infringing users, including litigation before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board and the federal courts.

Throughout his career, Joe has also represented tribes in Indian child welfare proceedings at the tribal, state and federal trial and appellate levels, both as parties and as amici curiae.

Joe has taught Indian law at William Mitchell College of Law and has presented and lectured at numerous continuing legal education courses. He is a special member of the Minnesota Indian Bar Association. Joe has been married to his wife Kristi for 21 years and has four children and one grandchild.

Joe's Indian-law experience includes:

  • New York, New Jersey, Vermont, Connecticut & Prairie Island Indian Community v. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, 681 F.3d 471 (D.C. Cir. 2012). Representing tribal client as intervenor in challenge to NRC waste storage rules. Successful at lower court and pending appeal.
  • Bruce H. Lien Company v. The Three Affiliated Tribes of the Fort Berthold Reservation, 93 F.3d 1412 (8th Cir. 1995). Established that the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act does not overcome the doctrine of comity and mandatory deference to tribal courts, and where there is a tribal law challenge to a gaming management agreement, that matter must be first litigated in the tribal court.
  • Hester v. Lower Sioux Indian Community, et al., 885 F.Supp.2d 934 (D. Minn, 2012). Successfully represented tribal client in Section 1983 challenge based upon tribal officer’s arrest.
  • Wolfchild v. Redwood County, et al., 91 F.Supp.3d 1093 (D. Minn. 2015). Successfully represented the Lower Sioux Indian Community in a challenge to their land and sovereignty.  
  • Wolfchild v. Redwood County, et al., 112 F.Supp.3d 866 (D. Minn. 2015). Awarded sanctions against Plaintiffs' attorney. 
  • Wolfchild v. Redwood County, et al., 824 F.3d 761 (8th Cir. 2016), cert denied, 580 U.S. 2 (2016). Prevailed at the 8th Circuit. U.S. Supreme denied Plaintiffs' cert petition. 
  • Klammer v. The Lower Sioux Convenience Store, 535 N.W.2d 379 (Minn. Ct. App. 1995). Established that Minnesota state courts must defer to tribal courts in cases arising on a reservation where the tribe has established a court that has jurisdiction over the matter. 
  • In re MH, 956 N.E.2d 510 (Ill. Ct. App. 2011). Represented tribe in state-court appeal regarding ICWA’s tribal-court transfer provisions.
  • Johnson v. Child Welfare Office of the Prairie Island Indian Community, CA-06-05 (Prairie Island Ct. App., Feb. 15, 2006). Established Community’s extraterritorial jurisdiction over its members in need of protection or services, confirming the Community’s jurisdiction over two tribal member children residing in the state of Florida.
  • Prairie Island Indian Community v. Treasure Island Corporation, Cancellation Nos. 92028171, 92028379 (TTAB May 15, 2008). Ordering cancellation of seventeen federal trademarks held by the Corporation that infringe on the Community's intellectual property rights.

Joe has taught the following classes and seminars:

  • "Understanding the Administration of Justice in Indian Country: Tribal Sovereignty and Tribal Courts", FBA - Minnesota, Diversity Committee (Federal District Courthouse, Mpls, November 3, 2015)
  • "Land Tenure and Issues Around Processing Rights-of-Way within Indian Country", 2015 Tribes in Transportation Conference, (Lower Sioux Indian Community, October 14, 2015)
  • "Understanding the Administration of Justice in Indian Country: Tribal Sovereignty and Tribal Courts", University of St. Thomas School of Law  (St. Paul, Minnesota, June 30, 2015)
  • "iGaming Legislative Update, Finding Your Path" (Tribal iGaming Workshop, Prairie Island Indian Community, April 2014)
  • "Processing Fee to Trust Applications" (4th Tribal Land Staff National Conference, Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, April 2014)
  • "Commission Administrative Hearings" (Oklahoma Tribal Gaming Regulators Spring Conference, Eastern Shawnee Tribe of Oklahoma, April 2014)
  • "Relationships Among Commissioners, Councils and Operators" (National Tribal Gaming Commissioners and Regulators Association, Tulsa, OK, March 2014) 
  • "Strong Ordinances, Strong Regulators" (Oklahoma Tribal Gaming Regulators Association, Fall Conference, Tulsa, OK, October 2013)
  • "Unionism and Tribal Self-Determination" (Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association Annual Conference, Oklahoma City, OK, August 2013)
  • "Family & Medical Leave Act Update" (National Native American Human Resources Association Legal Summit, Quapaw, OK, March 19, 2013)
  • "Fee to Trust from the Tribal Perspective" (2nd Annual BIA Midwest Region Conference, Saginaw Chippewa Tribe Isabella Reservation, June 27, 2012)
  • "Protecting Player Data in a Digital Gaming Age" (Oklahoma Indian Gaming Association Annual Conference Tulsa, Oklahoma, August 16, 2011)
  • "Unionism and Tribal Self Determination: The Collision of Labor Policy and Pre-Constitutional Sovereignty" (Second Annual Indian Law CLE, William Mitchell College of Law, October 25, 2011)
  • "Unions in Indian Country: The Role of Tribal Gaming Regulators" (National Tribal Gaming Commissioners and Regulators Conference, Palm Springs, California, April 2010)
Areas of Practice: 
  • Civil Litigation
  • Gaming Law
  • Indian Child Welfare
  • Intellectual Property
  • Real Estate & Land Use Law
  • ADR
  • Cultural Resources Protection
  • J.D. William Mitchell College of Law, St Paul, Minnesota, 1994 / Cum Laude / Warren E. Burger Scholar
  • B.A. Saint John's University, Collegeville, Minnesota, 1989 / Siehl Scholar
Bar Admissions: 
  • Minnesota
  • Oklahoma
Admitted to Practice: 
  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court for the District of North Dakota
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin
  • Prairie Island Indian Community Tribal Court
  • Tribal Court of the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan
  • Lower Sioux Indian Community Tribal Court
  • Mille Lacs Band Tribal Court
  • Grand Portage Tribal Court
  • Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Tribal Court
  • Yakama Tribal Court