Making A Difference For Dads

Our Chicago based law firm has a demonstrated record of success on behalf of fathers in custody disputes arising in divorce and paternity cases, in related matters such as domestic violence protection orders, and in post-decree matters such as child abduction, parent relocation and modification of child support orders.

James M. Hagler




To accompany his degrees from Boston University and John Marshall Law School, James Hagler also holds an FAA Airframe and Power Plant License from the University of Illinois Institute of Aviation and retired in 2005 after serving as a Sergeant First Class in a combat unit of the Illinois National Guard.

Jim brings his battlefield tactics to the courtroom on behalf of others. He has represented many high-profile clients including professional athletes, recording artists and public officials.

Widely-known as a tenacious litigator, Jim was honored with the Award of Merit from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children due to his experience and knowledge in international Hague Convention custody litigation. The National Center has referred many international cases to him in which he helped reunite many fathers with their children from Poland, Argentina, and Mexico.

Jim, an attorney with a deep sense of loyalty and courage, was also presented the "Life Saver Award" for helping recover an abused and kidnapped child who is now safe and out of harm's way.

In August 2009, Mr. Hagler was invited by the White House Office of Faith-based & Neighborhood Partnerships as an expert resource to join White House staff and others to participate in the First Annual White House Town Hall Meeting on Responsible Fatherhood and Healthy Families.

Most recently, in early 2015 Mr. Hagler was appointed to serve on the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) Standing Committee on Judicial Evaluations in Cook County. This is a significant professional honor involving the review of Judges in our judicial system.


  • The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, Illinois
    • Juris Doctor - 1990
  • Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts
    • B.A. - 1983

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, 1991
  • U.S. District Court Central District of Illinois, 1991
  • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois, 1991
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of Illinois, 1991

Practice Areas

  • Family Law
  • High Net Worth Divorce

Professional Associations

  • Illinois State Bar, Member
  • Chicago Bar Association, Member
  • American Bar Association, Member
  • Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA) , Serving on Standing Committee on Judicial Evaluations in Cook County


  • Award of Merit from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
  • Life Saver Award
  • Chicago Best Lawyer 2015 -selected by his peers
  • Best Divorce Lawyer

Past Positions

  • Illinois National Guard, Sergeant, 1981 to 1995