Chad Layton delivers optimal results for clients. As a shareholder in the firm’s Chicago office, he focuses his practice on commercial litigation, employment disputes, transportation, technology and cyber risk as well as other litigation matters.

Chad understands the importance of tailoring his approach to each lawsuit, consulting with clients prior to and during litigation to develop case-specific strategies that best serve their business needs. With more than two decades of litigation success, he brings a forward-looking approach that tempers aggressive litigation strategies with financial and other business considerations to achieve stellar results for his clients.

Chad serves as co-chair of the Complex Commercial Litigation and Technology & Cyber Risk practice groups. He drives professional development within Segal McCambridge and beyond as part of the firm’s Continuing Legal Education and Associate Development Committees. He also serves as president of the Midwest Chapter of the Claims & Litigation Management (CLM) Alliance. His pro bono practice includes representing clients in matters brought under the Hague Convention.

Prior to joining Segal McCambridge, Chad worked as a litigator at a national law firm as well as at a boutique insurance defense firm. He graduated cum laude from The John Marshall Law School where he competed on national mock trial teams. While in law school, Chad was an editor of the law review, and his published law review article was recognized by the National Law Journal.

Chad lives in the suburbs of Chicago with his wife and three children. When not spending time with family or friends, he is often on the golf course or playing hockey.

Honors

  • Leading Civil Defense Lawyer, Leading Lawyers, 2016 – present
  • Illinois Leading Lawyer – Products Liability Defense Law, 2014 – present
  • Premier 100 Member of the American Academy of Trial Attorneys, 2015
  • Volunteer Attorney of the Year Award, 2003

Professional & Civic Involvement

  • President, Board of Directors for the Midwest Chapter of the Claims and Litigation Management (CLM) Alliance, 2021 – present
  • Member, Board of Directors for the Midwest Chapter of Claims and Litigation Management Alliance, 2016 – present
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Former Co-Chair, Segal McCambridge General Litigation Practice Group, Products Liability Sub-Committee
  • Former Co-Managing Editor, LegalBuild construction law newsletter, Segal McCambridge
  • Judge, ABA/JMLS National Criminal Justice Mock Trial Competition, 2016
  • Judge, moot court class at Loyola University Chicago School of Law, 2015
  • Judge/Evaluator, National Criminal Justice Trial Competition, American Bar Association and the John Marshall Law School, 2013 – 2014
  • Former Member, Illinois Manufacturers’ Association
  • Claims and Litigation Management (CLM) Alliance, Technology/Cyber Risk Group
  • DRI
  • American Bar Association
  • Volunteer Attorney, Lawyers’ Committee for Better Housing
  • PADS volunteer, 2018 – 2020

Practice Highlights

Representative Matters

  • Secured victory for clients in the Illinois Supreme Court which issued a decision affirming riparian owners’ rights to protect property interests in creeks, rivers and streams
  • Successfully resolved a complex commercial litigation matter in U.S. district court involving national banks.
  • Obtained a victory in the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which affirmed a binding arbitration award in favor of a corporate client sued for discrimination and wrongful termination.
  • Currently representing a corporate client in numerous claims brought pursuant to Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA).
  • Represents numerous large corporations in complex commercial litigation and breach of contract matters.
  • Defending a nationwide auction house in a catastrophic vehicle accident in Cook County, Illinois.
  • Representing a telecommunications service provider in a matter arising out of an explosion resulting from a gas leak in Dubuque, Iowa.
  • Represented a large pharmaceutical manufacturer in an eight-figure breach of contract matter during 10-day binding arbitration.
  • Gained dismissal based on jurisdictional grounds of the manufacturer defendant in a product liability case involving a traumatic injury.
  • Represented an IT storage company in a commercial litigation matter in which the plaintiff sought more than $2 million in damages following a loss of data resulting from failed computer storage disk drives.
  • Worked with an IT forensics expert on a post-cyber breach HIPAA security rule compliance matter.
  • Obtained an appellate victory supporting riparian rights and protecting against the unauthorized use of private, non-navigable waterways by third parties.
  • Development and negotiation of business contracts, including the preparation of master service agreements, service-level agreements and related business contracts.
  • Successfully obtained a defense verdict at trial on behalf of a product manufacturer sued in Cook County, Illinois, by a plaintiff claiming a traumatic brain injury following a motorcycle accident.
  • Represents a cyber risk/cybersecurity company in contract development and negotiations.
  • Successfully defended a software development company in a complex commercial arbitration.
  • Obtained summary judgment in Cook County, Illinois, on behalf of a national auction house in a vehicle liability matter.
  • Obtained favorable judgment in a pro bono matter in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois in an international child abduction case under the Hague Convention.
  • Obtained summary judgment for 100 percent of debt owed to the plaintiff client in a commercial litigation and breach of contract matter.
  • Obtained dismissal at the pleadings stage of an entire lawsuit in a complex product liability matter involving a medical device.
  • Secured dismissal at the pleadings stage of a consumer protection claim in a complex products liability matter involving a medical device.
  • Successfully defended a software development company in a week-long binding arbitration in a commercial litigation and breach of contract action in which the plaintiff sought punitive damages against the development company. Obtained a not guilty judgment for the defendant and a favorable ruling on the client’s cross-claim, defeating all claims against the client.
  • Served as national counsel in a nationwide pain pump litigation.
  • Gained entry of summary judgment on behalf of a DNA testing corporation in a breach of contract litigation.

News & Events

Publications

  • “Employment Discrimination: Practice and Procedure,” contributing author, IICLE, 2022
  • “Rights, Remedies, and Procedures Under Illinois Law,” contributing author, IICLE, 2022
  • “Article III: Standing in Cyber-Breach Litigation,” co-author, The Brief, Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section, American Bar Association, 2019
  • “The Battle for Standing in Data-Breach Litigation Rages On,” co-author, Litigation Blog, Segal McCambridge, 2018
  • “The Circuit Split Continues When It Comes to Standing in Cybersecurity Litigation,” co-author, Litigation Blog, Segal McCambridge, 2018
  • “50-State Complaint Filed Against Equifax,” co-author, Litigation Blog, Segal McCambridge, 2017
  • “New York’s New Cybersecurity Regulations – Nuts & Bolts,” co-author, Litigation Blog, Segal McCambridge, 2016
  • “Protecting Your Company From Cyber Attacks – What You Need to Know Now,” co-author, The Illinois Manufacturer, 2015

Speaking Engagements

  • “Cyber Resilience in 2022,” Segal McCambridge Internal CLE Seminar, 2022
  • “The Three R’s of Cyber Readiness: Resilience, Risk and Response” and “Case Law Update,” TIPS Conference, American Bar Association, 2018
  • “The Fundamentals of Litigation,” Claims and Litigation Management (CLM) Alliance, 2016
  • “Best Practices: How Manufacturers Can Protect Themselves Against a Cyber-Attack Now,” Illinois Manufacturers’ Association, 2016
  • “Best Practices: How Corporate America Can Minimize the Risk of a Cyber-Attack,” Claims and Litigation Management (CLM) Alliance, 2015
  • “Best Practices for Drafting and Negotiating Contracts,” Illinois Manufacturers Association, 2014
  • “Identifying and Defending High Exposure Claims,” Claims and Litigation Management (CLM) Alliance, 2014
  • “Case Assessment and Evaluation,” CLM Group Inc., 2013

Interviews

  • “Crossing Your Fingers Isn’t a Plan,” Sync Magazine, 2016