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Pretzel & Stouffer believes that proactive risk management is the best defense when it comes to employment-related issues. Clients regularly ask us to create or revise their employee handbooks, policies and procedures because they know we have the extensive experience required to properly perform these tasks.

While risk management is essential and although much of our practice encompasses risk prevention, we understand that even an employer’s best efforts cannot eliminate claims altogether. When a claim occurs, our team of skilled, experienced and trial-ready attorneys works closely with our clients to reach the best possible resolution.

We have successfully represented large and small companies as well as sole proprietorships and individuals in cases involving retaliatory discharge, discrimination, and all civil rights claims under Title VII, Section 1981 and Section 1983 as well as state claims under the Illinois Human Rights Act. We have also defended claims involving the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act, allegations of harassment, whistleblowing, ERISA, breach of employment contracts and violations of non-compete agreements and other types of alleged employer wrongdoing.

We are on the front lines litigating claims brought under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, and Illinois Biometric Information Privacy Act, particularly in cases filed as class actions based on allegations of the misuse or mishandling of employee data.

Our employment attorneys are highly experienced with the practices and procedures governing investigations and proceedings brought by the government agencies charged with enforcing labor and employment laws, including the: U.S. Department of Labor, Wage and Hour Division; Illinois Department of Labor; Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; Illinois Department of Employment Security; Illinois Department of Human Rights; Illinois Human Rights Commission; National Labor Relations Board; Occupational Safety and Health Administration; and Various Local Government Employment and Human Rights Agencies.

Many of our clients employ workers who are governed by the Fair Labor Standards Act wage and hour requirements, and we often defend these companies against allegations of failure to pay overtime, improper classification and other issues. We are well-versed on state and federal Department of Labor wage and hour investigations, and we frequently represent and counsel clients through the entire process.

We have decades of experience both advising and defending clients in employment-related matters. From claim prevention to defense at trial, our employment law team has the requisite experience and skill to effectively and successfully handle any employment-related issue.

Related News & Results

Robert Chemers and Rich Burgland win a summary judgment for a professional liability insurer

Robert Chemers and Rich Burgland won a summary judgment for a professional liability insurer that it had no duty to defend its insured personal injury attorney who along with his employee, who had been an officer of an existing business, allegedly surreptitiously obtained confidential information and trade secrets from the existing business which they used ...

March 2023


Partners Matthew J. Egan and Kayla A. Condeni recently prevailed in a Title VII employment discrimination case in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois on behalf of the firm’s client, a healthcare employee union, that had employed the plaintiff in a sensitive governmental affairs position. After first granting Matt and Kayla’s ...

March 2023

Robert Chemers obtained a judgment for an insurer client in federal court in southern Illinois

Robert Chemers obtained a judgment for an insurer client in federal court in southern Illinois that there is no duty to defend an underlying BIPA class action complaint where the allegations fell within the “Recording & Distribution of Material and Information in Violation of Law” endorsement exclusion which exclusion included a specific reference to the ...

September 2022

Robert Chemers and Dave Larson win summary judgment for an insurer

Robert Chemers and Dave Larson won summary judgment for an insurer in the federal court in Rockford holding that a defendant in a serious underlying personal injury action is not an additional insured. The policy’s additional insured endorsement extended status as an additional insured where the named insured agreed in a written contract to name another ...

March 2022

John Scheid and Ryan Shupe Help Clients Navigate Personnel Changes and Negotiate Employee Severance Agreements

John Scheid and Ryan Shupe recently assisted two corporate clients navigate personnel changes, including the negotiation of employee severance agreements, both peaceably and with a special effort to minimize any potential liability under applicable state and federal employment laws.  These results were obtained in close consultation with their clients regarding both liability exposure and fairness ...

May 2020

Pretzel & Stouffer shareholders Robert Chemers, Matthew Egan, Edward Ruff, and Richard Waris named as Super Lawyers in Illinois for 2020

  Robert Chemers – Insurance Coverage and Appellate Matt Egan – Civil Litigation, Professional Liability, and Employment Law Ed Ruff – Class Action Mass Torts,  Products Liability, Medical Malpractice, and Business Litigation Richard Waris – Business Litigation and Professional Liability We congratulate Robert, Matt, Ed, and Dick for again being recognized for their outstanding legal ...

March 2020 | Firm News

Victory in Employment Discrimination Case

  Matthew J. Egan and Quinn P. Donnelly successfully defended the firm’s clients, a dental practice and a dentist, at trial in an employment discrimination case in the Circuit Court of Cook County. The plaintiff, whose employment contract was not renewed by the practice, alleged claims of pregnancy discrimination and retaliation under the Illinois Human ...

February 2020

Pretzel & Stouffer Attorneys Sustain Summary Judgment on Appeal for Railroad

Robert Chemers and William Elinski, sustained the summary judgment they obtained in the trial court on appeal in a case involving whether the plaintiff was an employee for the purposes of the Federal Employers’ Liability Act. The plaintiff, an employee of Mobile Rail Services, Inc. (MRS), was injured while servicing a Union Pacific Railroad Company ...

July 2019

Summary Judgment Victory in Title VII Lawsuit

Jim Sipchen and Matthew Lidga prevailed on a motion for summary judgment in favor of large retail seller of party supplies on a Title VII claim brought by the store’s former employee. The lawsuit was brought in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois and alleged gender discrimination based upon “gender stereotyping.” Specifically, the ...

January 2017 | Firm News