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Jon L. Farnsworth


Spencer Fane attorney Jon Farnsworth

T 612.268.7018
F 612.268.7001

Jon Farnsworth assists clients with all aspects of business and technology law, from mergers and acquisitions, brand and intellectual property rights protection and real estate. He provides a comprehensive approach to matters that includes not just guidance, but practical ideas that align with a client’s business goals. Jon is fond of saying that “an attorney should foster business, not inhibit it”. He brings a common sense, practical and strategic approach to navigating the legal complexities of business.

Jon commonly counsels clients on computer, internet, privacy, website, data breach, cyber security, cyber liability insurance, technology, and intellectual property legal issues. He has more than a decade and a half of experience handling complex technology and legal issues.  Jon  was elected, and previously served, as the Chair of the Minnesota State Bar Association’s Computer and Technology Law Section.

Experienced in working with entrepreneurs and business executives, particularly in the technology industry, Jon counsels businesses at startup in the initial strategy and financing stages as well as seasoned companies in strategizing about new market opportunities and risk factors. He has also worked with numerous clients in the sale of businesses ranging from transitioning ownership to family members and/or employees, multimillion-dollar transactions to unrelated third-parties, and involvement of private equity.

In addition to technology companies, Jon represents clients in a variety of industries, including retail, medical, specialized manufacturing, real estate, fitness and athletics, security, medical device, consumable products and professional services.

Highlights of Jon’s experience include:

  • Strategic analysis of business and legal operations, including new product development and protection.
  • Negotiated and closed multi-million dollar commercial lending and real estate transactions.
  • Successfully negotiated and closed small and mid-cap M&A transactions with domestic and foreign buyers.
  • Successfully defended and protected clients’ intellectual property rights, including in registrations, pre-litigation and litigation matters.
  • Implemented Incident Response Plans and acted as data breach coach in high-profile cases.

To view additional experience, please click here.

Presentations and Publications


  • Exclusions In Your Insurance Policy May Leave Your Business Exposed
  • Summary Guide to M&A Due Diligence
  • Dating Application Triggers National Security Concerns
  • United Kingdom Proposed New Tax for Online Companies
  • Supreme Court Delivers Heavy Blow to Online Retailers But Amazon Remains Ahead of the Curve
  • Fair or Unfair, Companies Must Comply with Wayfair
  • Top Three Reasons Why GDPR is Over-Hyped
  • FDA Rolls Out Calorie Menu Requirements For Restaurants And Vending Machines
  • FTC Sticks It To Manufacturers Who (Improperly) Use “Void If Removed” Warranty Labels
  • ADA Lawsuits Pop Up Over Inaccessible Websites
  • Changes in Child Privacy Law May Affect Online Businesses
  • Choose Carefully When Crafting Domain Name
  • Data Hack Suit Against Grocery Chain Must Check Out
  • Firms Need Data Breach Battle Plans
  • Lessons From Home Depot’s $19.5 Million Data Hack Case
  • The New Legal Frontier: A Practitioner’s Guide to Digital Assets
  • So, Your Personal Information Was Stolen From Equifax…
  • Stealing Your Employer’s Trade Secrets: A Bad Idea That May Land You In Jail
  • Don’t Lose “New” Business Clients Before You Fully Retain Them: Key Domain Name Considerations Needed Before Incorporating New Businesses
  • The Way to Start Your Business Partnership Right
  • Avoid Five Common Mistakes Made By Residential Landlords
  • 9 Common Problems Technology Start-ups Face
  • Breaking Up Isn’t Always Hard To Do: How A Legal Contract Can Make Parting With Business Partners More Sweet Than Sorrow
  • Can Private Practice Serve The Common Good
  • How To Properly Pick And Register Your Company’s Internet Domain Name
  • It’s Not Easy being Green: Legal Pitfalls Of Green Construction
  • Key Considerations For Your Buy-Sell Agreement
  • Key Warranty Issues
  • Developers Earning Green For Building “Green”
  • FAR Out! Understanding Changes to Federal Acquisition Regulations to Obtain Stimulus Money
  • Taking The Cloud Out Of The Cloud: 15 FAQs And Their Answers About Businesses Moving To Cloud Computing
  • Technology Service Statements Of Work: Pitfalls To Avoid
  • Ten Common Landlord Mistakes: The Keys To Dealing With Delinquency And Eviction Proceedings
  • Revisiting Tri-State And Bayview’s Skeletons: The Legal Lessons Learned From Two Outrageous Examples of Crematory Misconduct
  • Six Steps for Landlord to Maximize Eviction and Collection Efforts
  • Major Copyright Changes Affect Online Businesses
  • Summary Guide to Construction Claims
  • Withdrawn Bids – When Is A Bid A Binding Contract?


  • Business Formation: Start-to-Finish
  • Business Law: Strategies for Small Businesses, Startups and More
  • Negotiating Business Agreements via Text, Email, and Other Electronic Communications
  • LLC Operating Agreements: Reinforcing the Corporate Veil
  • 15 Of The Top Computer Law-Related Decisions That Every Lawyer Should Know
  • Avoiding Contracting Pitfalls – Drafting Technology Services Statements Of Work
  • Basic Financing Considerations & Raising Funds
  • Business Law 101
  • Capital Raising & Financing Options
  • Contract And Tort Law 101
  • Contracts, Torts And Other Liability Issues
  • Copyright And The Church
  • Copyright Law 101
  • Drafting And Reviewing Business Contracts, Agreements, And Leases During Formation
  • Drafting Technology Services Statements of Work
  • Effective Deposition Techniques: What Litigators Can Learn From Modern Film And Television Clips (And A Few Real Life Examples Too)
  • Employers’ Obligation To Retain And Preserve Written And Electronic Documents
  • Failure To Get And Properly Protect Copyrights, Patents and Trademarks
  • Hot Button Legal Issues Involving The Internet
  • Internet Law For The Estate Planner
  • Interpreting Essential Documents To Build Your Case
  • LegalCORPS Business Law Basics
  • Legal Ethics: Top Mistakes In Digital Communication
  • Legal Issues 101 For Entrepreneurs
  • My Space Or your Space: The Employment Law Implications Of Social Networking
  • Navigating A Lawsuit: How to Hire And Work With An Attorney
  • Negotiating Business Agreements Via Email, Text And Other Electronic Communications: Avoiding Inadvertent Contracts; Navigating Issues Of Enforceability, Authentication Of E-Signatures, And Admissibility
  • Operating Your Business
  • Partnership Disputes From Start To Finish
  • Privacy Law
  • Resolving Your Case: What Winning Can Look Like
  • Single Member LLCs: Piercing the Corporate Veil
  • Taking The Cloud Out Of The Cloud: 15 FAQs & Their Answers
  • Third-Party Service Provider Agreements
  • Top 9 Mistakes Made In Business Contracts


  • Saint Paul Urban Tennis, Director on Board
  • Southern Minnesota Regional Legal Services, Volunteer Attorney
  • University of St. Thomas Career of Professional Development, Presenter and Volunteer
  • University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business Graduate School, Former Alumni Board Member
  • University of St. Thomas School of Law, Student Mentor
  • Youth Hockey Coach, Mounds View Irondale Hockey Association
  • Youth Soccer Coach, Shoreview Community


  • Minnesota State Bar Association, Computer and Technology Law Section, Vice-Chair and Council Member
  • Ramsey County Bar Association
  • Wisconsin State Bar Association


  • Super Lawyers®, Rising Star, 2014-2018
  • Minnesota State Bar Association, North Star Lawyer
  • LegalCORPS Volunteer of the Year, 2015

Contact Jon Farnsworth at 612.268.7018 or jfarnsworth@spencerfane.com.