Stephen Swedlow is Co-Managing Partner of the Chicago office and is a trial expert who has focused his entire career on complex civil cases, having tried over 20 cases to verdict both as lead counsel for plaintiffs and defendants. With respect to class actions, he has represented defendants (and plaintiffs) in over 100 complex class actions and is one of the few attorneys in the country who has served as lead counsel in two successful class action trials actually tried to verdict. After completing his clerkship for Judge Farris of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in 1996, his practice has included first chair jury trials in many complex subject matters, including intellectual property, antitrust, environmental, class action, wage/hour/employment, and products liability. Mr. Swedlow was a Trial Lawyer of the Year finalist in 2003 for obtaining the largest civil verdict in Illinois history and has been an Illinois “Super Lawyer” from 2006-2016. He has served as lead counsel in multi-party jury trials and arbitrations, led large, multi-party litigation efforts, and argued (and won) important appeals, including several before state Supreme Courts and federal appellate courts.
In a career spanning over 20 years, Mr. Swedlow has successfully represented a variety of clients including: public corporations, private technology start-ups, private shareholders, institutional investors, health insurance companies, and plaintiff classes – including Uber Technologies, Koch Industries, Lucent, AT&T, Invista, Union Carbide and comScore. On the Plaintiffs’ side, Mr. Swedlow has obtained billions in recovery for plaintiffs and plaintiffs’ classes. On the defense side, Mr. Swedlow has tried to verdict cases ranging from products liability, class actions, patent infringement to environmental liability. He has defeated at trial claims brought by state and federal governmental agencies and served as lead counsel on antitrust claims that arise over the assertion in federal court and the ITC of patents essential to technology standards. He has been called upon by many of his clients in times of crisis to defend against claims for preliminary injunctions seeking to shut down their businesses. Mr. Swedlow has defeated such claims all across the country for Uber as well as for other clients including Flint Hills Resources.
Mr. Swedlow has over 20 years of experience litigating environmental cost recovery action on behalf of both plaintiffs and defendants under CERCLA, RCRA and related state law claims governing liability for cleanup of environmental contamination. He has represented landowners in claims against former owners for historical contamination, successfully obtained insurance recovery under CGL policies and defended CERCLA 106 actions on behalf of PRPs at superfund sites across the country.
Before joining Quinn Emanuel, he founded his own law firm of Swedlow & Associates where he was one of the few lawyers ever to serve as lead trial counsel on two separate class action trials taken to verdict. He is an invited lecturer Northwestern University Law School on statutory torts, complex civil litigation and class actions. Mr. Swedlow has also been retained by foreign governments to provide guidance and expertise with respect to cost recovery actions.