Honest. Smart. Committed.


Vincent A. Purtell

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Practice Areas:

  • Personal Injury


Vincent A. Purtell was born and raised in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He did his undergraduate studies at the University of South Dakota where he graduated in 1982. He went on to attend the University of South Dakota School of Law and attained his law degree in 1986.

After law school, Vince joined the Woods, Fuller, Shultz & Smith law firm as an associate attorney in the litigation section of the firm.

In 1990, he accepted a corporate counsel position with American Family Insurance Group in its Sioux Falls office. American Family's Sioux Falls branch office handled litigation in the entire state of South Dakota and portions of Minnesota and Iowa. While at American Family, Vince had an active litigation practice trying over fifty jury trials to verdict.

In 2010, he became a partner in the Johnson, Heidepriem & Abdallah law firm. Vince's practice is centered in the areas of trial work and civil litigation, including insurance defense, personal injury, products liability, and wrongful death.

Vince was selected to be included in The Best Lawyers in America for his work in the practice area of Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants and has been listed as one of the top 24 litigation attorneys in the State of South Dakota by Benchmark Litigation.

Vince and his wife, Teresa, have three children.


  • University of South Dakota School of Law, Vermillion, South Dakota
    • J.D. - 1986
  • University of South Dakota, Vermillion, South Dakota
    • B.S. - 1982
    • Honors: Dean's List 1978-1982
    • Honors: Phi Beta Kappa
    • Major: Political/History

Bar Admissions

  • South Dakota, 1986
  • Iowa, 1998
  • U.S. District Court District of South Dakota, 1986
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit, 1986


  • American Board of Trial Advocates, Nominated & Elected
  • The Best Lawyers in America - Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants
  • Top 25 Litigation Attorneys in the State of South Dakota by Benchmark Litigation (2012)
  • Named by Peers for Inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America (2013)

Classes & Seminars

  • "Insurance - Dealing with the Adjustor", South Dakota State Bar - Continuing Legal Education, 1994 to 1994
  • "Evaluating and Negotiating the Defense Way", South Dakota Trial Lawyers Association - The Mechanics of Automobile Litigation, 1998 to 1998
  • "Underinsured Motorist Coverage, Schmidt v. Clothier Settlements and Their Ramifications", South Dakota Insurance Law, 1999 to 1999

Pro-Bono Activities

  • Lutheran Social Services Mentor Program
  • Big Brother/Big Sister Program
  • Multiple Sclerosis Society

Past Positions

  • Woods, Fuller, Shultz, & Smith, Associate Attorney, 1986 to 1990
  • American Family Ins. Group, Senior Staff Attorney, 1990 to 2010
  • South Dakota Circuit Court - First Circuit (Yankton, SD), Clerk, 1985 to 1986

Fraternities or Sororities

  • Delta Theta Phi

Professional Associations

  • American Bar Association, Member
  • South Dakota Bar Association, Member, 1986
  • Iowa Bar Association, Member, 1998
  • South Dakota Trial Lawyers Association, Member
  • South Dakota Defense Lawyers Association, Member
  • Iowa Defense Lawyers Association, Member
  • Defense Research Institute, Member
  • International Association of Defense Counsel, Member

Current Employment Position

  • Partner