Tom Joensen is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers — a recognition extended to less than one percent of the nation’s attorneys — who works inside and outside the courtroom to help clients manage, mitigate and resolve product liability and professional negligence disputes.

Tom is a formidable first-chair product liability litigator. He has gone to jury trial 18 times as lead counsel. He has also served as lead counsel in five different evidentiary hearings in federal district court. Before the Iowa Supreme Court and Iowa Court of Appeals, Tom has appeared seven times.

Tom highly values effective communication, both with his clients and when representing them at trial. His background as a speech pathologist also gives him insight into defending clients in health care and life sciences. He knows the science behind the products he defends, and he skillfully argues clients’ cases to judges and juries.

Tom also has represented clients in commercial disputes ranging from bankruptcy matters to class actions, and in professional negligence cases.

Personal Interests

Tom enjoys giving presentations to different audiences on a wide range of legal issues — from small groups of clients to large, continuing-education opportunities for colleagues. He also enjoys exercising nearly every day with his wife and family. He has a special interest in wine from around the world.

Faculty Positions

  • Iowa State University — Adjunct Professor of Communications Disorders, 1999-2000


Bar Admissions


Court Admissions

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Iowa
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Iowa
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit


University of Iowa College of Law
J.D. (2003)

University of Iowa
M.A. in Speech Pathology (1997)

Iowa State University
B.A. with distinction (1994)

Insights & Events

Other Perspectives
  • Feeling the Burn: Physician Burnout
    Physician Connection, June 2018
  • Remaining Current: Helping Your Patient and Yourself
    Physician Connection, June 2015
  • Case Note: Iowa Code Section 614.1(9) Schlote v. Dawson, __ N.W.2d __
    Defense Update, Vol. XVII, No. 4, Winter 2004
  • Model Act for Genetic Privacy and Control (MAGPAC)
    Iowa Law Review, Vol. 88, No. 1, October 2002

Leadership & Community

Pro Bono

  • Tom serves as the attorney officer for a local organization dedicated to promoting and conducting educational, charitable and social welfare works.

Professional Associations

  • American Bar Association
  • Defense Research Institute
  • Iowa Academy of Trial Lawyers
  • Iowa Defense Counsel Association
  • Iowa State Bar Association
  • Polk County Bar Association


  • Faegre Drinker — Pro Bono Honor Roll, 2021 
  • American College of Trial Lawyers — Fellow, 2021
  • Best Lawyers®— Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants, 2022 
  • Iowa Academy of Trial Lawyers — Fellow
  • Great Plains Super Lawyers —Products: Defense, 2018

Awards Methodology

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