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Michelle R. Peirce


Michelle R. Peirce is a Partner in Hinckley Allen’s Litigation group and Co-Chair of the Government Enforcement & White Collar Defense group. Michelle devotes her time equally to complex civil litigation and white-collar criminal defense. She is the current President of the Women’s Bar Foundation and a past president of the Women’s Bar Association of Massachusetts. Michelle has been selected as a “Super Lawyer” for 2009-2021. Michelle has tried numerous jury and bench trials both in private practice and while serving as a Special Assistant District Attorney in Middlesex County.

In her criminal practice, Michelle represents business executives, corporations, and professionals who are under investigation or indictment for white-collar crimes. These include cases alleging fraud in the areas of healthcare, securities, banking, bankruptcy, export, tax, defense procurement, and other state and federal crimes.

In her civil practice, Michelle represents individuals, businesses, and public entities in complex civil disputes. These include contract disputes, litigation between businesses, employment disputes, insurance, and many others. Her practice includes defending clients during Massachusetts Attorney General investigations, including healthcare fraud and consumer protection investigations. In addition, Michelle defends lawyers, doctors, and other professionals in disciplinary, regulatory, and licensing proceedings.


  • Secured verdicts of not guilty on all twenty-five charges of second-degree murder against Barry Cadden in the nationally-covered New England Compounding Center criminal case arising out of the 2012 meningitis outbreak
  • Defended PPE facilitator in criminal and civil investigations
  • Successfully defended public authority in a commercial contract suit claiming nearly $10M in damages
  • Won landmark federal appeal upholding a no-jail sentence for client convicted of Big Dig highway fraud
  • Persuaded federal authorities not to indict scientist for alleged export crimes after lengthy negotiations
  • Successfully resolved case against insurance carrier for failing to cover hospital’s loss
  • Won civil fraud and consumer protection case, without a trial, against an attorney alleged to have participated in a real estate scheme
  • Represented health plan in favorably resolving class action law suit under Mental Health Parity Act
  • Won dismissal of case brought by union against public authority claiming violation of fire safety regulations
  • Defense award in arbitration defending clients in medical practice partnership dispute
  • Dismissal of all criminal charges in kidnapping case
  • Dismissal of disciplinary complaint against physician at Board of Registration in Medicine in matter involving a patient death
  • Summary judgment awards defending clients in employment discrimination, including claims for race discrimination, sexual harassment, and healthcare whistleblower retaliation
  • Successfully represented family and heirs seeking damages after being defrauded by another family member
  • Persuaded federal prosecutors not to bring charges against attorney in a bankruptcy fraud investigation; successfully disposed of attorney disciplinary complaint arising out of same conduct


Work Experience

  • Hinckley Allen
    • Partner
  • Barrett & Singal
    • Partner
  • Goodwin Proctor
    • Associate
    • Special Assistant District Attorney (Cambridge District Court)
  • Suffolk University
    • Adjunct Professor
  • Lawyers Weekly, Inc.
    • Vice President
  • Offices of the Honorable Andrew A. Caffrey, U.S. District Court in Boston
    • Law Clerk

Honors & Awards

  • Best Lawyers in America® (2021-2022)
    • Recognized for Criminal Defense: White-Collar
  • Super Lawyers®
    • Massachusetts (2009-2021)
    • Top 100 (2015-2021)
    • Top 50 Women, Massachusetts (2012-2021)
    • Top 50 Women, New England (2015-2018)
    • Rising Star (2005-2006)
  • Lawyer of the Year, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (2017)
  • Circle of Excellence honoree, Top Women of Law, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (2017)
  • Top Women of Law, Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly (2013)

Charitable & Civic Involvement

  • Women's Bar Foundation
    • President (2021-present)
    • Trustee (2006-present)
  • Women's Bar Foundation's Family Law Project
    • Volunteer Attorney
  • Pro bono representation for summary judgment purposes of prisoner in Quintal v. Commonwealth of Massachusetts (filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts)

Professional Affiliations

  • White Collar Conference Advisory Committee, 2020 Program
  • Boston Bar Association, White Collar Steering Committee, Member
  • BBA Business and Commercial Litigation Steering Committee, Member (2016-2018)
  • National Institute for Trial Advocacy, Faculty Member, multiple years
  • Federal Bar Association, Massachusetts Chapter, Civil Healthcare Section Co-Chair
  • Boston Bar Association, Civil Litigation and Criminal Law Sections
  • Massachusetts Bar Association
  • Women's Bar Association
    • President, 2009-2010
    • Member of Executive Board, 2007-2010
    • Vice President of Membership and Statewide Outreach, March 2007-2008
    • Past Media Committee Chair
  • Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly, Former Member of the Board of Editors
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, Member

Bar Memberships

  • Massachusetts
  • United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts

Speaking Engagements

Michelle testified at the State House several times in her role as President of the Women’s Bar Association. In addition, she speaks regularly at legal community and bar association events, including:

  • Boston Bar Association Webinar: Breaking SCOTUS Update: U.S. v Van Buren Decision Resolves Circuit Dispute on Reach of Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, June 2021
  • Boston Bar Association’s 2019-2020 Supreme Court Round-up panelist, June 2020
  • Jury Trials in the Age of Social Media, Boston Bar Association, April 2020
  • Panelist, BBA 2020 White Collar Conference on the panel entitled: Complex Multi-Defendant Litigation, January 2020
  • Co-host, “The U.S. Supreme Court’s Escobar Ruling on False Claims Act Cases – Trends and Developments Since the June 2016 Decision,” June 2018
  • Panelist, “How to Excel as a Second Chair,” Boston Bar Association, June 2018
  • Moderator, “2018 Federal Bench-Bar Discussion,” Boston Bar Association, April 2018
  • Panelist, “Paths to First Chair Litigation: How to take the Lead in Criminal Litigation,” Women’s Bar Association, March 2018
  • Speaker, Communications with In-House Lawyers– Landmines and New Developments, Boston Bar Association, December 2017
  • Women’s Bar Association “Women Lawyers Leading Cases in the Courtroom,” June 2017
  • CLE “Healthcare Fraud 2017,” May 2017
  • CLE “Healthcare Fraud 2016: Government and Defense Perspectives,” May 2016
  • Boston Bar Association “Criminal Exposure in Civil Cases – Traps for the Unwary,” Nov. 2015
  • Boston Bar Association “Practicing Before the Board of Registration in Medicine and the Division of Health Professions Licensure,” September 2015
  • MCLE chair of annual program on using social media to win cases, 2012-2015, 2017-2020
  • MCLE “Key Issues in Discovery Practice,” May 2014
  • Boston Bar Association “Health Care Fraud,” May 2014
  • Moderator, Women’s Bar Association panel “Demystifying the Path to the Bench,” October 2013
  • MCLE “Key Issues in Discovery Practice,” May 2013
  • Keynote speaker, Lawyers Weekly Unsung Hero Awards, October 2011
  • Boston Bar Association panel on jury instructions, April 2011
  • MCLE Trial Advocacy Workshop, July 2010


Michelle is often quoted by, or published in, various media including: Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly; Lawyers USA; the National Law Journal; the MBA’s Massachusetts Lawyers Journal; Law360; Lawyers Weekly Medical Law Reporter; and, the Boston Herald.

News & Insight


Ways to Maintain Compliance with Regulations Concerning Women and Minority-Owned Businesses

August 27, 2021

Federal, state, and local agencies often have rules encouraging businesses to award contracts to disadvantaged business enterprises, women-owned businesses, or minority-owned businesses (referred to as “DBEs” here for convenience). Oftentimes, complyin…


Importance of Involvement: A Conversation with Michelle R. Peirce

March 24, 2021

Michelle R. Peirce is a Partner in Hinckley Allen’s Litigation group who devotes her time equally to white-collar criminal defense and complex civil litigation. She is the current President of the Women’s Bar Foundation and a past president of the Wome…


As Boston Sees White Collar 'Boom,' Hinckley Allen Bulks Up

February 16, 2021

High-profile cases in Boston are growing and Hinckley Allen is expanding the white collar practice to meet client need. Partners Michelle Peirce, Bruce Singal and Laura Angelini sat with Law360 to discuss.

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Firm News

34 Hinckley Allen Attorneys Recognized as 2021 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars

October 12, 2021

Hinckley Allen is pleased to announce that Super Lawyers has selected 34 Hinckley Allen attorneys as Super Lawyers and Rising Stars. Each year, no more than five percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers to re…

Firm News

57 Hinckley Allen Attorneys Recognized by Best Lawyers® in America 2022

August 19, 2021

Hinckley Allen is pleased to announce that 57 attorneys are recognized in the 2022 edition of The Best Lawyers in America®, including 7 “Lawyers of the Year.” Best Lawyers® has also recognized 15 Hinckley Allen attorneys in their inaugural "Ones to W…

Firm News

Hinckley Allen Names Michelle R. Peirce as Practice Co-Chair

May 17, 2021

Hinckley Allen is proud to announce that Michelle R. Peirce has been named Co-Chair of the Government Enforcement & White Collar Defense group, joining Michael J. Connolly and Michael L. Koenig as leaders of the group, which represents individual and …

Firm News

Hinckley Allen Expands Litigation Group with Eight Lateral Hires from Barrett & Singal

January 5, 2021

Hinckley Allen today announced that eight trial lawyers from Barrett & Singal have joined the Firm, including Co-Chairs of Barrett & Singal’s Litigation group, Co-Chairs of its Research Misconduct group, and its General Counsel. All eight new hir…

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Past Event

WEBINAR: Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly - Computer Fraud and Abuse Act: What’s the impact of the recent Supreme Court decision?

July 27, 2021

The U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Van Buren v. U.S., which resolved a circuit split over the scope of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, could have significant repercussions for both criminal defense and employment attorneys.Partner Michelle Pei…

Past Event

WEBINAR: Breaking SCOTUS Update—U.S. v Van Buren Decision Resolves Circuit Dispute on Reach of Computer Fraud and Abuse Act

June 9, 2021

Partners Michelle Peirce and Laura Angelini were part of a recent Boston Bar Association panel to discuss a decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.The U.S. Supreme Court has finally resolved a sharp circuit split about the scope of the Computer Fraud and Abuse…

Past Event

VIRTUAL EVENT: Women's Bar Foundation – Comedy Night "Whoop It Up for Women!"

June 3, 2021

Join the Women's Bar Foundation, along with Hinckley Allen Partner and WBF President,  Michelle Peirce for a fireside chat with a Fran Drescher! The evening will also honor the dedication of a few outstanding volunteer attorneys with the Nery Arrano Pro B…

Past Event

WEBINAR: Navigating Public Construction Minefields

May 13, 2021

Hinckley Allen construction, environmental and government enforcement & white collar defense attorneys have teamed up to address important developments and legal issues relating to government investigations of public contractors.  This webinar, sponso…

Past Event

WEBINAR: Representing Small Companies in Criminal Investigations

February 24, 2021

On behalf of the Boston Bar Association, Litigation Partner Michelle R. Peirce will be speaking alongside an esteemed panel as it relates to white-collar crime and representing small companies in investigations.“Join us for a panel discussion on the many…

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“I feel such a weight lifted off my shoulders. You have been a rock through out this ordeal, with your composure, confidence yet at the same time being cautious and supportive. You prepared me thoroughly and I appreciate you for that and for your outstanding professionalism.” —Physician, sanction avoided

“I would recommend her to anyone for anything. She was direct, extremely caring, and gave me some hope that better things might actually be possible.” —Criminal client, dismissed by prosecutor

“My most sincere appreciation to you for your expert attention to our recently wrapped up legal troubles. While the vagaries of the law and the government were cause for concern throughout this protracted ordeal, there was never a moment when I doubted your dedication and expertise. Your knowledge, thoroughness and thoughtful manner allowed me to have the peace of mind to feel confident that, whatever the result, we were well represented.” —Medical practice, investigated for healthcare fraud