James B. Heffernan

Firm: Rich May, P.C.
Location: Boston - MA

  • 176 Federal Street
    Boston, MA 02110-2223
  • Tel : 617-556-3800
  • Fax : 617.556.3890

As a co-founder for his own real estate development company, Jim understands firsthand how to start and manage a company, including partnership negotiations, management of service providers and other external relationships, employment and compliance matters, general contracting and corporate compliance, and day-to-day operations.

Jim has also managed multi-million dollar real estate development projects, working with municipal governments, architects, general contractors, environmental consultants, brokers, and other crucial members of a real estate development project’s ecosystem.  He appreciates the time pressures and value that goes into running a business and the costs that are associated with it.

In addition to starting and running a business, Jim has extensive experience representing local, national and international clients in all facets of real estate, including purchase and sale of property, condominiums, obtaining state and local zoning/permitting approvals, leasing, joint venture development agreements, construction contracts, and commercial and private financing. Jim has negotiated and managed relationships with high-net worth individuals, family offices, and co-development companies for his company and clients in the real estate development business.


  • Named “Exclusive Featured Attorney” Representing Boston Premier Real Estate Lawyers 2022-2024.
  • Named a “Super Lawyers New England” for Real Estate by Thomson Reuters, 2022,2023
  • Named a “Super Lawyers New England Rising Star” for Real Estate by Thomson Reuters, 2013-2023.
  • Named a “Top Lawyer” by Boston Magazine, 2021.
  • Named a “Boston Rising Star” by National Law Journal, 2015.


  • Represented a regional developer in the development, management and sale of Brunswick Station in Brunswick, Maine, which included mixed use of apartments, offices, and retail/restaurants.
  • Represented a regional bank in the $40 million dollar acquisition financing for a prominent building in Chinatown, Boston.
  • Represented Emerald Place Development Company in the $76 million dollar sale of a 238-unit apartment building in Lunenburg, Massachusetts.
  • Represented Navem West Broadway in the development, construction, conversion to condominium, and sale of a 44-unit condominium building in South Boston, Massachusetts.
  • Represented a large regional bank in the $13 million dollar refinancing of apartment buildings in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
  • Represented a Chinese investor in a joint venture with a local developer for the acquisition and development of a $120 million mixed use development in Roxbury, Massachusetts.
  • Represented a joint venture development of 16 condominium units in South Boston.
  • Represented a local developer in their $7 million dollar acquisition of a ground lease development in Quincy, Massachusetts.
  • Represented a regional developer in their $10 million sale of a light industrial property in Portland, Maine.
  • Represented a restaurant tenant with a complex lease regarding a boutique hotel located in downtown Boston.


  • Georgetown University Law Center, J.D., 2007; Executive Editor, Georgetown Journal of Legal Ethics.
  • Boston University, B.A., cum laude, 2004


  • Massachusetts


  • District Court for the District of Massachusetts

Rich May, P.C

At Rich May, P.C., our real estate attorneys focus on creating value. We approach real estate transactions strategically and creatively, working with our clients to develop the most advantageous plan to gain the maximum value from their investments. We are not just “dirt lawyers,” but trusted advisors addressing investment objectives, risk management, tax, and exit strategies.

We offer a full range of legal services to the real estate industry, and to our corporate clients with real estate needs. Our clients include owners, developers and lenders active in development, acquisitions, sales and financing. We also help our business clients meet their real estate needs, from leases and acquisitions to construction and development of corporate campuses. Our services include:

  • Acquisition and disposition of commercial and industrial properties throughout the United States
  • Real estate and commercial finance, including debt, equity and conduit financing
  • Development of residential, commercial, office, retail and industrial projects, throughout New England
  • Leasing for commercial, office, retail and restaurant landlords and tenants
  • Transaction structuring, tax planning, entity selection and formation
  • Liquor licensing for restaurants, retail, and breweries
  • Cannabis Control Law
  • 1031 exchanges
  • Franchise leasing and development
  • Telecommunications facility siting under local, state and federal laws, including the Telecommunications Act of 1996
  • Strategic planning and risk management for real estate ownership, management and development
  • Real estate joint ventures, private equity, investment management and securities law compliance
  • Restructuring and repositioning distressed projects
  • Multi-family projects, including affordable housing under 40B
  • Commercial and residential condominium development
  • Solar and other green energy development and leasing