James R. Walston


Tel 612.371.3244
Fax 612.371.3207

James R. Walston is a commercial real estate attorney with more than 30 years of in-depth experience covering a broad range of real estate matters in Minnesota and throughout the U.S. Jim's practice includes commercial real estate purchases, sales, leases, easements, real estate financing transactions, nonprofit entity real estate transactions, land use matters, public transportation projects, renewable energy projects, and the resolution of real estate and title related disputes.

Jim also serves as a reliable and experienced resource for many small to mid-market owner-managed businesses in Minnesota on a variety of real estate-related matters and general corporate matters.

Representative Experience


  • Purchases, sales and leases of industrial sites and related use facilities throughout the country for national transportation company.
  • Sale of contaminated sites for national solid waste disposal company.
  • Representation of municipalities on real estate matters including public transportation projects, right of way projects and public/private development projects.
  • Acquisition and sale of hotels.
  • Acquisition of property interests for renewable energy projects.
  • Sale and financing of apartment complexes in numerous states.
  • Acquisition and redevelopment of property for shopping centers.
  • Acquisition and sales of parcels for residential developments.
  • Acquisition of parcels for senior housing projects.
  • Commercial leasing for national restaurants, retailers and service industries.

Land Use Matters

  • Negotiated, processed and obtained land use approvals for construction and operation of industrial and commercial projects in Minnesota and throughout the country.
  • Negotiated, processed and obtained land use approvals for construction and operation of multi-million dollar entertainment facility in the Twin Cities.

Real Estate Litigation and Workouts

  • Foreclosure and workouts of real estate loan portfolios for community banks.
  • Client contact and manager of title insurance claims for national title insurance underwriter.
  • Property tax appeals for warehouse, storage, and industrial properties.
  • Counsel for court appointed receivers on real estate projects.


  • Negotiate, draft and close commercial real estate loans for community banks.
  • Negotiate, draft and close non-recourse commercial real estate loan transactions for life insurance companies throughout the country.
  • Multi-state financing of industrial manufacturing facilities.
  • Financing and refinancing of warehouse distribution facilities.
  • Financing and refinancing of recreational facilities, shopping centers, hotels.
  • Refinancing of recreational facilities, shopping centers.

Professional Activities

American Bar Association, Real Property Trust and Estates and Business Law sections

Minnesota State Bar Association, Real Property Law Specialist

Hennepin County Bar Association

Recognition & Accomplishments

The Legal 500 US, Real Estate and Construction - Real Estate, 2019

The Best Lawyers in America, real estate law, 2019

Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, real estate (Minnesota), 2018, 2019

North Star Lawyer, Minnesota State Bar Association (2015)

Minnesota Super Lawyers, 2006–2013

“Spirit of Camp Fire” Award, Camp Fire USA-Minnesota Council, 2008

Speaking Engagements

2017 Advanced Lending Seminar, Complimentary Seminar, May 11, 2017

2016 Advanced Lending Seminar, Complimentary Seminar, April 21, 2016

Community Activities

VLN Housing Clinic

Northeast Senior Services, Inc. Legal Clinic

Lindquist & Vennum Winter Closet Foundation

Urban Homeworks, Volunteer

William Mitchell College of Law (now Mitchell Hamline School of Law) (J.D., 1985)

University of Nebraska (B.A., 1982, Political Science)


South Dakota