John W. (Justin) Harkins IV

John W. (Justin) Harkins IV


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For nearly a decade, Justin Harkins has focused on a range of litigation cases, including insurance coverage, employment disputes, commercial litigation, and general tort defense. At this point in his career, Justin has a particular focus on water right issues, including litigating water and real estate disputes, water right permitting and regulation, and water easements and access. He has achieved positive results for clients in numerous cases in state and federal courts in Montana, North Dakota, and Wyoming, including successful appeals at the Montana Supreme Court and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Justin has been recognized by Best Lawyers as a “One to Watch” in the areas of environmental litigation, labor & employment litigation, and natural resources law.

Justin graduated in 2013 from the University of Montana School of Law, where he served on the editorial boards of both the Montana Law Review and Public Land & Resources Law Review. He has practiced at Crowley Fleck since 2014, except for a period from 2016-2018 when he served as a law clerk to U.S. Magistrate Cavan, District of Montana.

Justin has volunteered his time with various boards in Montana and presently sits on the Board of Directors for the Yellowstone Area Bar Association.

Practice Areas

    • Appellate
    • Labor & Employment
    • Advice and representation in employment litigation, including wrongful discharge and discrimination matters
    • Real Estate
    • Water Rights
    • Tort Litigation
    • Common law bad faith
    • Coverage decisions
    • Negligence
    • Payment of insurance benefits
    • Personal Injury
    • Product Liability Defense
    • Unfair Trade Practices Act
    • Water Law
    • Other Water-Related Matters
    • Water Right Transactions

Bar Admission

Montana, 2014
U.S. District Court, District of Montana, 2014
North Dakota, 2014
U.S. District Court, District of North Dakota, 2014
Wyoming, 2014
U.S. District Court, District of Wyoming, 2014


2014, M.S., University of Montana
2013, J.D., University of Montana School of Law
2009, M.Div., Vanderbilt University
2005, B.A., Emory University

Prior Experience (Employment)

Law clerk to the Hon. Timothy J. Cavan, United States Magistrate Judge for the District of Montana.

Honors & Awards

Best Lawyers – Ones to Watch – Litigation (Environmental), Litigation (Labor & Employment), Natural Resources Law (2022-Present)

Community Involvement

Yellowstone Area Bar Association Board of Directors (2018-present)
Yellowstone AIDS Project Board of Directors (2015-2018)
Montana State Bar – New Lawyer Section (2014-2015)