Mackall, Crounse & Moore, PLC has joined Dewitt Ross & Stevens S.C.

The newly formed DeWitt Mackall Crounse & Moore S.C. will provide clients with enhanced legal services
and efficiencies as well as access to more than 100 attorneys practicing in nearly 30 areas of
law in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Dismiss this message


View Full Biography:

Ranney III
Download VCard

Joseph A. Ranney III

Email Me
Sarah M. Piersma

Email Full Biography

Message Details:
  • To:

  • From:

  • PDF of the biography will be included.
  • Cancel

Recognized as one of the state’s leading experts on civil trial procedures and constitutional law, Jay is dedicated to helping clients resolve their business and intellectual property disputes quickly and cost-effectively. When settlements fail, he litigates to win, employing the business experience and legal skills he has honed over the past 33 years.

Jay has litigated commercial disputes involving everything from satellite TV dealerships to computer software to resort hotels. He has also litigated a broad variety of patent, trademark and copyright disputes involving everything from guitars to genomes. Jay has written several books, including a treatise on depositions and the leading history of the development of Wisconsin law.


Jay’s clients in Wisconsin courts range from “mom and pop” businesses to “Fortune 500” companies, as well as individuals who become involved in business and intellectual property disputes. Jay also represents Wisconsin companies and individuals that are sued or must sue someone else outside Wisconsin. His business and intellectual property practice is national in scope.

Notable Representations

  • When a real estate developer was unable to complete a project because of disputes with a city in Wisconsin, the developer turned to Jay and a colleague to assist. Jay and his colleague brought a successful suit against the city for violation of constitutional rights and obtained a federal court jury verdict for their client in excess of $500,000.

  • A Wisconsin company that made solar glass laminates was accused by an out-of-state company of infringing that company’s patents and was told to stop making laminates, which would have meant the end of its business. The Wisconsin client came to Jay and a colleague for help. Together, they obtained a court decision which allowed the company to stay in business and ended the threat posed by the out-of-state company.

  • A California company that made replicas of a famous 1950s guitar was sued in a Tennessee federal court for trademark infringement by another company that made replicas of the guitar. During litigation, Jay and a colleague obtained a settlement that allowed the California company to minimize its litigation costs and continue making its replicas.

  • Madison’s federal district court has a reputation for having a “rocket docket” – that is, for resolving cases more quickly than most federal courts. Companies with complex patent disputes and other litigation matters come to Madison from everywhere in the United States in order to get quick decisions from the court – but in order to get such decisions, they must navigate their way through the court’s unique and very detailed rules. Companies and law firms from New York to San Francisco have hired Jay as their local guide to the court and its rules, and have enjoyed success as a result.

  • When a Milwaukee software developer landed a big contract with a national home improvement store chain and the chain later tried to use the software without paying, Jay and a colleague were called in to help. They helped their client sue the chain for breach of contract in a North Carolina federal court. As a result of the lawsuit, the developer obtained a substantial payment and even better, was able to repair its relationship and keep doing business with the chain.

  • When a bank ended its credit relationship with a satellite TV company and the company sued the bank under Wisconsin’s Fair Dealership Law, the bank turned to Jay and a colleague for assistance. Together they convinced the satellite TV company through litigation that the company’s chances of success in the lawsuit were not good; as a result, they were able to obtain a good settlement for the bank.

  • Jay was a member of a team that persuaded the Wisconsin Supreme Court to reject a constitutional challenge to the 1995 law authorizing construction of a new baseball stadium in Milwaukee. Jay and others also defended the Governor of Wisconsin before the Supreme Court against a constitutional challenge to a 1995 law reorganizing portions of the state’s educational system.

Articles & Presentations

Jay is the author of three books and numerous articles on legal subjects, including:

Our Locations

Greater Milwaukee - Get Directions

Green Bay - Get Directions

Madison - Get Directions

Minneapolis -Get Directions


Get to know us

DeWitt LLP is one of the ten largest law firms based in Wisconsin, with an additional presence in Minnesota. It has more than 130 attorneys practicing in Madison, Greater Milwaukee, Green Bay and Minneapolis in over 30 legal practice areas, and has the experience to service clients of all scopes and sizes.


We are an active and proud member of Lexwork International, an association of mid-sized independent law firms in major cities located throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia and an active member of SCG Legal, an association of more than 140 independent law firms serving businesses in all 50 state capitals and major commercial centers around the world.


Best Lawyers 2013 – 2021
Super Lawyers 2021
Compass Award 2012
Top 100 Lawyers: National Trial Lawyers Association


While we would like to hear from you, we cannot represent you until we know that doing so will not create a conflict of interest. Accordingly, please do not send us any information about any matter that may involve you until you receive a written statement from us that we represent you (an “engagement letter”). You will not be a client of the firm until you receive such an engagement letter.

The best way for you to initiate a possible representation is to call DeWitt LLP at 608-255-8891. We will make every effort to put you in touch with a lawyer suited to handle your matter. When you receive an engagement letter from one of our lawyers, you will be our client and we may exchange information freely.

Please click the “OK” button if you understand and accept the foregoing statement and wish to proceed.