Associate, Bowman and Brooke
For most lawyers, getting established at a major firm involves negotiating a labyrinth of clerkships and similar apprenticeships first. Not for Mike Carey: He went straight to Bowman & Brooke to work on trials and complex litigation as soon as he graduated cum laude from William Mitchell College of Law.
“I didn’t have my sights set on anything in particular,” Carey said. “But I knew that going back to school and getting good grades would mean a better opportunity.”
Carey has made the most of that opportunity. He has tried several notable cases, including one in 2010 in which he defended a foreign automaker in a nearly monthlong wrongful-death product-liability trial involving allegations of inadequate roof strength and defective safety restraints. Last year, he defended a heavy-equipment manufacturer in a wrongful-death case, as well as a Seattle-based software developer in a contractual dispute involving claims for revocation and breach of warranty.
Carey also earned a dismissal of a “lemon law” case against Mazda Motors with the first motion to dismiss he ever wrote or argued himself.
By such work, Carey has drawn praise not only from colleagues and superiors, but even from the bench. After one trial, a Minnesota Court of Appeals judge wrote to Bowman’s partners, “[Mike] is very poised and confident for a young attorney…Whatever you’ve done to train him, well done!”
Carey’s skills have allowed him to try not only such high-level litigation, but also to argue on more prosaic matters — such as an uncle’s dispute with the DNR after the former found a record-size black bear in the woods. With Carey’s help, the uncle was able to establish possession.
“It turns out there was actually very old caselaw about ownership of wild game,” Carey recalled. “It was fun to get into an unusual area of law.