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Tel.: (414) 727-6276
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About John Wirth


John represents a variety of real estate owners and developers, manufacturers, service providers and investors. He has negotiated mergers and acquisitions of companies and their assets, as well as the purchase and sale of industrial properties, office buildings, retail centers and development properties. John has extensive experience in representing real estate investors and developers and has been involved in all aspects of the development process. John has been actively involved in closing billions of dollars of loan transactions.

As a result of the trust his client’s place in him, John’s practice extends beyond transactional representation. Many of John’s clients involve him in their day-to-day business decisions and have him supervise or represent them in a variety of other legal matters involving their business and personal affairs.


John is one of only a handful of Wisconsin lawyers who devote much of their practices to serving as a business receiver. He operates troubled businesses and either sells or liquidates them. John was first appointed as receiver in 1995 and as a Chapter 11 operating trustee in 1991.

John’s receivership cases have included manufacturers, fabricators, contractors, intellectual property and computer software companies, distributors, real estate development companies, lumber mills, foundries, service providers, leasing companies, entertainment facilities and dealerships, among others.

At the request of the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions and the Wisconsin Department of Justice, John was appointed in 2012 as the receiver for the Wisconsin Funeral Trust after it was discovered that the Trust was missing about $24 million. John negotiated hundreds of settlements under which all depositors are guaranteed to receive the benefits promised. He also recovered all missing principal and a substantial part of the interest, restructured the Trust, and reduced its operating costs.

John has served as an expert witness related to receivership and creditors’ rights matters, including in a $46 million action, and has served as a mediator in similar disputes. He has presented continuing education classes regarding such matters and has published related articles.


John served as the Mayor of the City of Mequon from 2019 through 2022. Prior to that, he served as an alderman for 15 years, including three stints as the Mequon Common Council President, and has served on a wide variety of board and commissions. He received the 2022 Distinguish Service SAard from the Mequon-Thiensville Chamber of Commerce. John is a member of the Thiensville-Mequon Rotary Club, has been actively involved with a number of charities and is an active member and volunteer at Lumen Christi Catholic Church.


  • Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America (2013 to present)
  • Selected for inclusion in Wisconsin’s SuperLawyers (2011 to present)
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated
  • Avvo Rating: 10.0 out of 10
  • Distinguished Service Award, Milwaukee Bar Association, 2000
  • Association of Volunteer Administrators/Service Executives’ Award of Excellence for Milwaukee Area Businesspeople, 1989


John is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin law School and has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. During law school, John studying international finance and business transaction law in London, England and served as an articles editor for the Wisconsin Law Review. John is a proud graduate of Marquette University High School.


  • Turnaround Management Association
  • Co-Chair, Milwaukee Committee, 2016
  • State Bar of Wisconsin
  • Member, Various Sections
  • Eastern District of Wisconsin Bar Association
  • Milwaukee Bar Association
  • Chair, Bankruptcy Section, 1998-2000; Program Chair, 1997-1998
  • Ozaukee County Bar Association

To reach John, send him an email at or call him directly at 414-727-6276.

Best Lawyers Award - John Wirth