John Shope


I help clients with disputes to end them, and help clients who may not currently have disputes to avoid them.

Complex commercial litigation and arbitration is the primary focus of John Shope’s practice, in which he represents national corporations such as Dell, NextEra, and Enterprise Rent-A-Car. BTI Consulting named John a 2022 Client Service All-Star, noting client comments that "John demonstrates excellent legal skills," and "He always produces a superior work product."

John’s energy industry litigation is conducted on behalf of a wide range of public and private industry clients. He has handled constitutional challenges to the deregulation and taxation of electric utilities, and represents both independent power producers and public utilities in energy-related disputes resolved through litigation, arbitration, and state and federal regulatory proceedings.

For over 25 years, John has represented companies and institutions faced with class action and other aggregate liability claims. John also has experience in a wide variety of commercial disputes, ranging from business divorces, non-competes, trade secrets, and breaches of contract to civil fraud.

For over a dozen years, John has served on the commercial and energy arbitration panels of the American Arbitration Association and the International Institute for Conflict Prevention and Resolution (CPR), and has served as the arbitrator in over thirty (30) arbitrations. In addition to deciding cases, he frequently acts as counsel for parties in arbitration and assists clients with the drafting of arbitration and other dispute resolution clauses. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.

As a Special Assistant District Attorney, John conducted one dozen criminal jury trials. He has won civil fraud trials in both state and federal court as well as state and federal appeals.


  • The University of Chicago Law School, J.D., with honors, 1991
  • Amherst College, B.A., 1987
  • Leningrad State University, Certificate, 1986

Bar and Court Admissions


  • Massachusetts
  • Connecticut
  • New York


  • Supreme Court of the United States
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York



  • Obtained dismissals of three consumer class actions in the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court based on arguments for change in governing law
  • Obtained dismissals of consumer class actions against internet and technology firms based on arbitration clauses in customer agreements
  • Obtained summary judgment dismissing proposed tuition refund class action claims against nationally ranked university with multiple campuses throughout the United States. 
  • Defeated class certification of suit against financial services company despite uniform disclosures
  • Represented trustees of $11 billion mutual fund in investigation of management contract


  • Defeated proposed multi-billion dollar gas pipeline subsidy in state regulatory proceedings
  • Represented generators opposing subsidized billion-dollar international transmission line
  • Represented generator opposing price-suppression aspects of competitor's proposed liability must-run agreement at FERC
  • Successfully tried defense of a suit seeking to invalidate a power purchase agreement valued in excess of $40 million due to long term gas supply restructurings
  • Represented the State of New Hampshire in a constitutional challenge to the deregulation of the electric utility industry
  • Obtained $2 million arbitration award from the American Arbitration Association's International Centre for Dispute Resolution over mismanagement of a power plant in Guyana
  • Represented private equity fund in successful international arbitration over power plant in North Africa
  • Arbitrated successor gas indices in power purchase agreement
  • Represented power plant in challenge and successful settlement of pipeline repair cost allocation dispute at Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities
  • Represented a generation company in a constitutional challenge to taxation of hydroelectric generating units


  • Law clerk to U.S. District Judge José A. Cabranes in New Haven, Connecticut
  • Research assistant to U.S. Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner in Chicago, Illnois


  • 10 Consumer Agreement Edits To Ease Mass Arbitration Risk (Law360, August 24, 2022)
  • A Guide to Drafting Enforceable Arbitration Clauses (Law360 July 7, 2020) 
  • Look Before You Click: The Enforceability of Website and Smart Phone App Terms and Conditions (Boston Bar Journal, Spring 2019), cited in Kauders v. Uber Techs., Inc., 486 Mass. 557 (2021)
  • Transparency in Arbitration (Practical Law, Winter 2018) 
  • Summary Disposition in Arbitration (Today’s General Counsel, Winter 2018)
  • Make An Informed Choice About Arbitration (Law360, March 1, 2018)
  • 13 Tips for Consumer Arbitration Clauses That Work (Corporate Counsel, June 3, 2014)

Honors & Involvement

  • BTI Client Service All-Star (2022) 
  • Named by Boston Magazine as a "New England Super Lawyer" (2009-2017) 
  • Named by Boston Magazine as a "Massachusetts Super Lawyer" (2008) 
  • Named by Boston Magazine as one of the “40 Bostonians to Watch” (June 2002) 
  • Named by the Boston Business Journal as one of the forty outstanding business and community leaders under age forty in the greater Boston area (November 2001) 
  • Boston Police Commissioner's Community Service Award (August 2001)
  • University of Chicago Law Review
  • International Chamber of Commerce, New England Arbitration Subcommittee  
  • New England Legal Foundation, Board Member 
  • Frank J. Murray Inn of Court, Board Member and Past President
  • Steering Committee, Boston Bar Association Business and Commercial Litigation Section, Past Member
  • Class Action Committee, Boston Bar Association, Member and Past Co-Chair
  • Bay Village Neighborhood Association, Past President 
  • Community Music Center of Boston, Past Board Member  
  • University Club of Boston, Member 
  • Boston Planning and Development Authority Impact Advisory Groups, Member

Speaking Engagements

  • Webinar, "Do You Really Have a Deal? Making and Enforcing Online Customer Agreements," (April 2021)
  • New England Legal Foundation Virtual Winter Forum, Meeting Corporate Sustainability and Profit Goals (December 2020)
  • Webinar, Critical Dispute Clauses in Times of Volatility and Disruption (May 2020)
  • Webinar, Advertising Class Actions for the Generalist In-House Counsel (May 2019)
  • Webinar, Arbitration Clauses: Who, What, Where, Why, When & How? (November 2017)
  • New England Legal Foundation, Massachusetts Class Action Outlook (April 2015)
  • Boston Bar Association, Challenges to Arbitration (November 2013)
  • George Mason University Law School Judicial Symposium, Arbitration (November 2013)
  • New England Legal Foundation, Key Supreme Court Business Cases (October 2013)
  • Law Seminars International, Aggregate Litigation After Class Actions (June 2013)