Division of Legal Services (DLS)

The Division of Legal Services (DLS) provides legal representation and advice to the Governor, Legislature, other state officers and state agencies. The Division consists of units organized on the substantive areas of law that maximize the advantages of specialization. Each unit is managed by a supervising attorney and is comprised of assistant attorneys general, paralegals, and secretarial staff.


The Civil Litigation Unit handles a wide variety of matters on behalf of the State of Wisconsin, its agencies, the University of Wisconsin System, and individual state employees.


The Consumer Protection & Antitrust Unit enforces Wisconsin’s consumer protection and antitrust laws. The unit handles a variety of enforcement matters, often in collaboration with other state agencies.


The Criminal Appeals Unit represents the state in all felony appeals before the Wisconsin Court of Appeals, the Wisconsin Supreme Court and the United States Supreme Court.


The Criminal Litigation Unit performs a number of important functions involving criminal related matters including prosecuting selected criminal violations and sexual predator commitments and providing training and advice to state prosecutions and law enforcement.


The Environmental Protection Unit enforces state environmental laws by prosecuting violations referred to the Attorney General by environmental regulatory agencies or requested by district attorneys.


The Medicaid Fraud Control & Elder Abuse Unit investigates and prosecutes crimes committed against vulnerable adults in nursing homes and other facilities, as well as fraud perpetrated by providers against the Wisconsin Medicaid program.


The Special Litigation & Appeals Unit provides legal advice to the State and its agencies and handles litigation in a wide variety of substantive areas, frequently on issues relating to constitutional law and governmental authority.


Wisconsin law does not authorize the Attorney General and employees of the Department of Justice to provide legal advice to private individuals. If you need legal advice or representation you may want to contact a private attorney. The State Bar of Wisconsin Lawyer Referral and Information Service can help you determine if you need a lawyer, and how to proceed if you do.


Frequently Used Resources

Criminal Law Decisions Online

Notice of Injury & Claim Form

Open Meetings & Public Records

Tobacco Directory


Division Administration

David MeanyDavid V. Meany,
Division of Legal Services


David Meany has practiced law for more than 30 years in Wisconsin. He had served as Chief Legal Counsel at the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection since his appointment by Secretary Ben Brancel in November, 2011. Previously, David was a partner in two Wisconsin law firms, Michael, Best and Friedrich, and DeWitt, Ross & Stevens. Before and during law school, he was a research analyst in the Civil Rights Division at the United States Department of Justice. He received a B.A. from Antioch College, and his law degree, cum laude, from Georgetown University. Mr. Meany has a son who is a United States Army Captain and a daughter who is a lawyer.