Alan Salpeter

Alan Salpeter

Senior Counsel

Alan Salpeter has served as lead trial counsel on all types of complex commercial litigation. Over four decades, Mr. Salpeter has tried approximately 70 bench and jury trials and argued 20 appeals in federal and state courts throughout the country. Mr. Salpeter is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers (2008) and the International Academy of Trial Lawyers (2009).

Mr. Salpeter has particular experience relating to securities fraud and consumer class actions; government regulations, investigations, and enforcement actions; cases arising out of mergers and acquisitions; private equity transactions; contests for corporate control; aborted business transactions and business failures; alleged breaches of fiduciary duty and negligence by corporate officers and directors; malpractice suits against accountants, lawyers and consultants; supply contracts; software contracts, cases involving alleged theft of trade secrets; and antitrust issues. He also has extensive arbitration and mediation experience.

Mr. Salpeter has represented clients in virtually every industry, including: insurance, banking and financial institutions, private equity, commercial real estate, computer technology, software, energy, mining, automotive, public accounting, manufacturing, construction, higher education, transportation, food and beverage, shipping, medical devices, healthcare, retail, and pharmaceuticals.

Mr. Salpeter is currently an Adjunct Professor, Northwestern Pritzker Law School, teaching "The Strategy of Litigation" (2007 through 2010; 2013 through 2015; 2018, 2019, 2021 and 2022); and a Guest Lecturer on Litigation Strategy, University of California/Berkeley, Boalt Hall, 2002 through 2006 and University of Pennsylvania Law School, 2009.


  • Currently representing a Chicago-based real estate developer in a suit to enforce a guaranty of a lease by a defaulting tenant/movie theater operator.
  • Recently advised a large Northern Indiana bank in defending core and non-core bankruptcy claims by a liquidation trustee of a bankrupt payroll processing company.
  • Recently represented an IT infrastructure/disaster recovery company in a suit against a former officer/director who was terminated and whose equity interest was repurchased by the company.
  • Recently represented a Tier I supplier of automotive components in litigation alleging misappropriation of trade secrets.
  • Recently represented on a pro bono basis an inmate in a federal penitentiary regarding his claims against the Bureau of Prisons for the failure to protect him and for medical malpractice claims, which claims were successfully resolved.
  • Recently defended a nurse placement business against preference claims by a bankrupt hospital.
  • Represented a former Chicago Tribune executive in litigation arising out of the Tribune bankruptcy.
  • Represented a nurse placement business, as plaintiff, against a former employee and a competitor who stole its trade secrets.
  • Represented a European businessman in an SEC investigation.
  • Represented a software company in a contract dispute with a provider of certain services and support.
  • Represented a Chicago real estate developer in disputes with certain prospective tenants.
  • Represented a for-profit higher education group in a suit for alleged false advertising brought by the Federal Trade Commission.
  • Defended trustee of a family trust against allegations of self-dealing and fiduciary breaches.
  • Represented automotive Tier I supplier in contract dispute with sub-supplier over quality of components purchased from sub-supplier.
  • Provided "Second Opinions" to clients, including Boards of Directors and Senior Executives, facing big-stakes, high-risk litigation situations.
  • Represented the CEO of a portfolio company in an investigation of events leading up to a restatement of the company's audited financial statements and bankruptcy filing.
  • Represented a private equity firm, as plaintiff, in connection with claims of fraud and breach of contract arising out of its purchase of a portfolio company.
  • Defended CEO and CFO of a private health-care company against allegations of breaches of fiduciary duty.
  • Obtained a jury verdict in a § 1983 civil rights action against a Chicago police officer for using excessive force against an arrestee; appeal recently argued in US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.
  • Led a confidential, internal investigation into whistleblower allegations of wrongful conduct by company officials.
  • Acted as an expert witness for the successful party in a confidential settlement of a legal malpractice case which, in turn, arose out of an underlying, complex commercial arbitration.
  • Successfully represented a for-profit educational institution and two senior executives in the dismissal with prejudice of a putative class action alleging a 10b-5 claim.
  • Defended an internationally known bank headquartered in the Middle East against allegations that it financed terrorism in Israel, West Bank, and Gaza.
  • Represented a major international airline in disputes with GDSs and OTAs.
  • Acted as a mediator in successfully settling a professional malpractice case on a confidential basis.
  • Defended a French insurance company against allegations of fraud arising out of the purchase of Executive Life Insurance Company, a rehabilitated California insurance company and obtained a favorable settlement.
  • Represented and advised individual CEOs and senior corporate executives in complex corporate litigation and with respect to corporate governance issues, directors' responsibilities, and employment and severance issues.
  • Successfully represented Walgreens in two dismissals of a putative shareholder class action alleging a 10b-5 claim and succeeded in obtaining a dismissal with prejudice of complaint on second attempt.
  • Successfully obtained judgment after a 2 week bench trial for Kenny Construction Company and 5 of its owners against its former CEO on a contract relating to the financing of a major hotel project.
  • Successfully represented a heir of the co-founder of Alberto Culver in a contested probate trial and subsequent settlement.
  • Successfully represented sole shareholder of Ameriquest in predatory lending practices MDL class actions.
  • Successfully obtained summary judgment for Accenture LLP in a contract dispute with a former client.
  • Represented director and angel investor in information technology start-up company (involving internet switching capabilities) in arbitrating $45 million claim of securities fraud and breach of fiduciary duty, which settled for $0 on the eve of arbitration.
  • Represented directors of Nationwide Financial Services in securities class action litigation challenging its merger into Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company.
  • Represented Finish Line Inc. in the successful settlement of Finish Line/Genesco/UBS "busted merger" litigation.
  • Represented Metal Management, Inc. in successfully opposing a shareholder's motion to enjoin a multibillion dollar merger with Sims Group of Australia (trial and appeal in the same day).
  • Represented Munich Re in a shareholder class action filed in connection with Munich Re's purchase of The Midland Company.
  • Represented Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) in the Enron shareholder litigation.
  • Represented CIBC in the Global Crossing shareholder litigation.
  • Represented BellSouth and its senior executives in the BellSouth shareholder litigation.
  • Represented Ernst & Young in the Cendant shareholder litigation and in subsequent litigation brought by Cendant.
  • Represented Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle Corporation, and Jeff Henley, CFO of Oracle Corporation, and obtained summary judgment in their favor in insider trading litigation in Delaware.
  • Represented Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, and several of its partners, in successful settlement of securities litigation.
  • Represented Equitable Life Assurance Society in a group of market timing cases.
  • Represented Ernst & Young in the successful trial of AUSA v. Ernst & Young, a three-month bench trial by nine insurance companies alleging $150 million of losses when Jamaica Water & Power went bankrupt.
  • Represented Accenture LLP in a successful breach of contract arbitration against Computer Science Corporation in connection with the outsourcing of all of the information technology of JP Morgan.
  • Represented Lexecon Inc. in its successful $45 million jury verdict and $50 million settlement from the Milberg Weiss law firm in an abuse of process case.
  • Represented the NCAA in a damages-only jury trial arising out of a salary cap imposed by the NCAA on entry level coaches at Division I schools.
  • Represented Johnny's Ice House, Inc., a girls hockey team, in the successful settlement of a pro bono, Title IX case against Amateur Hockey Association of Illinois asserting discrimination against girls hockey in the State of Illinois.
  • Represented Quaker Oats in two successful arbitrations arising out of Quaker's acquisition of Arnie's Bagelicious.
  • Represented Northern Engineering Industries plc ("NEI") in a three-week jury trial arising out of the breach of a manufacturing agreement whereby NEI designed a railroad crane to be manufactured and sold in the US by defendant Portec.
  • Represented The Horsham Corporation in three related trials arising out of its purchase of Clark Oil out of a bankruptcy in St. Louis.


Chambers USA
Litigation: General Commercial (Illinois) (2006–2023)
Best Lawyers
Bet-the-Company Litigation (1993–2021, 2023)
Commercial Litigation (1993–2022)
Illinois Super Lawyers
Top 100 Illinois Lawyers (2010, 2011, 2012 and 2021)


  • J.D., Villanova University School of Law, Managing Editor of Villanova Law Review
  • B.S., American University
  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • Fellow, International Academy of Trial Lawyers (2009)

  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers (2008)

  • Board of Counselors, Equal Justice Works (2018–2022)
  • Member, Antitrust and Litigation Sections, American Bar Association

  • Member, Seventh Circuit Bar Association

  • Member, Chicago Bar Association


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