Michael E. Motto

Contact Me: [email protected] (563) 344-4900 (Ext 123)

Michael E. Motto is a member owner at Bush, Motto, Creen, Koury & Halligan, PLC. Michael is a graduate of the University of Iowa with a double major in Political Science (BA, 2002) and French (BA, 2002). He graduated from Chicago-Kent College of Law (JD, 2006). He joined Bush, Motto, Creen, Koury & Halligan PLC, in 2006, and became a member in 2011. He practices law in a wide area of civil and criminal matters, specializing in criminal and civil trial litigation. Michael is one of the premier criminal defense attorneys in the Quad City area, having tried multiple Class A and Class B felony cases before juries, including Murder 1st Degree. Michael practices in the state courts of both Iowa and Illinois, as well as the Federal District Court for the Southern District of Iowa. In addition to French, Michael has studied Farsi and Russian at a college level, and speaks Swedish at a very basic level. He has lived and studied in France and Russia, lived and worked in England, and lived in Sweden. Michael also completed an internship with the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, International Visitors Program, in 2001.

Professional Licenses and Admissions:

  • Iowa Supreme Court
  • Illinois Supreme Court
  • United States District Court for the Southern District of Iowa


  • Chicago-Kent College of Law (JD 2006)
  • University of Iowa (BA, Political Science, 2002)
  • University of Iowa (BA, French, 2002)

Professional Memberships:

  • American Bar Association, 2006 - Present
  • Iowa State Bar Association, 2006 - Present
  • Scott County (Iowa) Bar Association, 2006 - Present
  • Illinois State Bar Association, 2007 - Present
  • President, Scott County (Iowa) Bar Association, 2013 - 2014
  • Vice President and President-Elect of the Scott County (Iowa) Bar Association 2012 - 2013
  • Member of the Scott County (Iowa) Bar Association Executive Counsel, 2011 - 2012 (six-year term ended after one year due to election to President-elect)
  • Iowa State Bar Association International Law Section Council Member, 2015 – Present
  • Iowa State Bar Association Criminal Law Section Legislative Committee, 2015 – Present (Committee Chair 2020 - Present)
  • Iowa State Bar Association eCommerce Section Council Member, 2019 – Present
  • Iowa State Bar Association Jury Instructions Committee, 2019 – Present
  • American Branch of the International Law Association, 2020 – Present
  • American Branch of the International Law Association International Criminal Court Committee, 2020 - Present
  • American Branch of the International Law Association International Human Rights Committee, 2020 – Present
  • American Branch of the International Law Association United Nations Law Committee, 2020 - Present
  • Dillon Inn of Court, 2019 – present
  • Iowa Young Lawyers Association, 2006 - 2016
  • Phi Delta Phi Legal Fraternity, Landon Inn, Washburn University School of Law, 2003 – 2004
  • Washburn Business Law Society, Washburn University School of Law, 2003 - 2004

Community Involvement:

  • Parish member of John F. Kennedy / Our Lady of Victory
  • Junior High Mock Trial Coach 2016 - Present
  • German-American Heritage Center and Museum, Board Member 2019 - Present (Vice-President, 2021 - Present)
  • Davenport Assumption Century Club, Board Member, 2019 – Present

The National Trial Lawyers 

 Legal Presentations:

  • “Criminal Sentencing Enhancements,” Davenport, Iowa, Lunch & Learn CLE, June 7, 2017. An hour-long presentation of all the current Sentencing Enhancements applicable in Iowa. Presentation was delivered to attorneys in Davenport, Scott County, Iowa.
  • Criminal Law Discussion Group Presenter, Des Moines, Iowa, 2019 Magistrate Conference, June 17, 2019. A 50-minute-long presentation summarizing relevant and recent Court of Appeals and Supreme Court Opinions specifically relevant to Magistrates in the State of Iowa. Presentation was delivered at the 2019 Magistrate Conference.
  • Judicial Officers Academy, “Forcible Entry and Detainers.” November 5, 2020 (held virtually). An hour-long presentation of Forcible Entry and Detainer Law for new Magistrates undergoing training, including relevant COVID-related changes and concerns.
  • Last Chance CLE, “Small Claims Court Issues and Update,” December 18, 2020 (held virtually). 45-minute presentation on current Small Claims court issues post-COVID.

Our Approach

We will work hard to earn your trust and loyalty through our commitment to you and your case, by our work ethic, our experience and resources, our deep commitment to obtain justice and our honest ethical approach.