Stephen J. Siegel is a partner of Novack and Macey LLP. Steve guides businesses and individuals in resolving their commercial disputes.
Tools used include litigation, arbitration and negotiation, as appropriate to achieve client goals. In a typical engagement, Steve serves clients as both their vigorous advocate and a confidential counselor.
Steve is a long-time leader of the Section of Litigation of the American Bar Association, co-chairs its largest committee, on Commercial & Business Litigation, and is quoted frequently in ABA publications about court decisions nationwide. He is chair of the firm's Energy Disputes Practice Group and a member of the Real Estate Litigation Practice Group.
Steve has been named as a 2016 Illinois “Super Lawyer” based on peer recognition and professional achievement. The Super Lawyers List recognizes no more than five percent of attorneys in each state. Steve also is ranked as a Preeminent Attorney, the highest Peer Review Rating of the Martindale-Hubbell lawyer rating service. He earned a 5.0 out of 5 ranking, meaning that he meets very high criteria of general ethical standards in litigation, business law and commercial law. Read more about Steve’s Martindale-Hubbell peer rating and peer comments. In addition, Steve has been selected by his peers and an independent panel as an Illinois “Leading Lawyer” annually since 2005.
Steve is a member of the Energy Bar Association and the Chicago Council of Lawyers, volunteers at A Just Harvest, a food pantry in Chicago’s Rogers Park area, and has been active in a wide range of other legal and civic organizations.
- Middlebury College (B.A. 1984), cum laude
- University of Michigan Law School (J.D. 1990), cum laude
Speeches & Publications
- King Coal: Dethroned but No Demise in the Novack and Macey Energy Update, Summer 2016. View PDF.
- Using Letters of Intent in Commercial Real Estate Negotiations, in the Illinois Bar Journal, October 2015. View PDF.
- The Stock Issuer’s Dilemma: How Duties to Shareholders Limit an Issuer’s Options in Employee Disputes, in Business Law Today, October 29, 2012. View PDF.
- Steve Siegel Explains When and How to Use ADR Cost-Effectively to Resolve Legal Disputes. View PDF.
- Recovering Attorney Fees for Litigation Work Performed by In-House Counsel. View PDF.
- In-House Decisions: “Extrajudicial” Waiver Does Not Necessarily Result in Broad Subject Matter Waiver. View PDF.
- In-House Decisions: Offers by Corporate Counsel to Represent Employees Personally – A Cautionary Story. View PDF.
- In-House Decisions: Counsel’s Recollection of Internal Investigation Held Nondiscoverable. View PDF.
Steve chairs the firm’s Energy Practice Group and has a particular depth of experience in several types of business disputes: investment disputes and business divorces; real estate litigation; and contract disputes in the power, gas and coal industries. Examples of client successes in these areas that Steve has led or co-led include:
Investment Disputes And Business Divorces
- A $20 million arbitration award in favor of investors for mismanagement and securities fraud in two closely-held investment vehicles;
- Favorable settlements for five former clients of broker Frank Gruttadauria, who misappropriated over $100 million from several dozen of his clients, while misrepresenting that their accounts had grown to approximately $275 million in value;
- An injunction for a client charged with fraud by the public company to whom she had sold her energy consulting business, which permitted her to sell millions of dollars of restricted stock she received in the disputed merger, a victory that was followed by a seven-figure settlement payment reported in the company’s next SEC filing; and
- Internal investigations for private companies of alleged misconduct by officer/shareholders.
Real Estate Litigation
- A negotiated victory for a national hotel operator in a lease dispute with its landlord. Our client’s primary goal was not to recover monetary damages but, rather, to substantially extend the lease term. After taking over the case from prior counsel, we amended the complaint to add claims that the landlord and its affiliate had breached a territorial exclusivity covenant in the lease. We then sought discovery on the affiliate’s profits from improperly competing with our client. After we obtained court orders requiring both defendants to comply with that discovery, the landlord reversed its longstanding opposition to extending the lease and settled the dispute by entering into a 50-year lease that ceded operational control of the property to our client;
- A seven-figure judgment after trial, affirmed on appeal, on a building owner’s claims against both a contractor and its principals;
- The removal of an illegal billboard that stalled completion of a shopping center development, after the Illinois Appellate Court affirmed the trial court’s entry of summary judgment in our client’s favor; and
- Court orders dismissing fraud and contract claims brought by investors against a real estate development partnership, followed by the plaintiffs’ voluntary dismissal of the action with prejudice.
- An $18 million settlement, reached during arbitration, in favor of a coal purchaser arising from a producer’s failure to deliver low-priced coal as market prices rose;
- An arbitration award and federal court judgment in favor of subsidiaries of a publicly-held energy company, restraining frivolous multi-million dollar litigation in Guatemala, which freed our client to sell its assets in that country;
- An arbitration award in favor of a retail gas supplier awarding it every dollar it sought in damages, attorney’s fees and arbitration expenses on its claim to enforce two unsigned contract amendments; and
- An arbitration award in favor of a retail power seller denying a commercial customer’s claim for purported overcharges and awarding our client all of its arbitration expenses.
Steve also has substantial experience in health care, employment, IP licensing, non-compete/non-solicit, trademark and transportation industry disputes and in defending class actions and consumer fraud claims. Notable victories include, for example: a landmark ERISA decision for a health care provider issued by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit; dismissal of a putative consumer class action, prior to class certification, in a victory that the Illinois Appellate Court affirmed on appeal; and an injunction for an online game manufacturer in a trademark dispute.
Steve is also a trained mediator who is qualified to mediate a wide variety of business disputes. Before joining Novack and Macey in 1993, Steve served as a legislative assistant to then-U.S. Rep. Harry M. Reid (D.-Nev.) (now U.S. Senate Minority Leader) and as a law clerk to United States District Judge Morey L. Sear (E.D. La.), and he practiced at Latham & Watkins LLP.
- Steve Siegel Quoted in ABA Litigation News on How to Avoid Court Sanctions for Failure to Adequately Prepare a Deponent
- Ten Novack and Macey Attorneys are Leading Lawyers for 2016
- 2016 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars
- Steve Siegel Quoted in ABA Litigation News on Burden of Proof for a Motion to Vacate a Default Judgment
- Steve Siegel Quoted in ABA Litigation News on Second Circuit’s Decision That Federal Commodity Exchange Act Covers Only Domestic Transactions
- Steve Siegel Quoted in ABA Litigation News on Recent Utah Supreme Court Decision
- Steve Siegel Quoted in United States Law Week on Civil Procedure and the Abstention Doctrine
- Steve Siegel Quoted in ABA Litigation News on Recent Supreme Court Decision on Abstention Doctrine
- Steve Siegel Quoted in ABA Litigation News on Recent Whistleblower Decision
- Steve Siegel Finds Wide-Ranging Implications for Future Litigation against Payment Networks in Federal Court Decision, “Genesco, Inc. v. Visa, U.S.A., Inc.”
- Stephen Siegel Named Co-Chair of ABA Section of Litigation’s Commercial and Business Litigation Committee
- 1,000-Plus, Big Names Expected at ABA Conference in Chicago; Stephen J. Siegel Is a Conference Chair
- Steve Siegel Co-Chairs ABA Annual Conference for Litigators, April 24 to 26, 2013 in Chicago
- “Small but Mighty” Litigation Boutique Scores Eight Appellate Victories in 2012
- ABA’s “Business Law Today” Publishes Stephen J. Siegel’s Article About the Restraints on a Stock Issuer’s Options in Employee Disputes
- Victory on Appeal in “Landmark” ERISA Decision by Fifth Circuit Court
- Appellate Court Finds Billboard Illegal; Upholds Tenant’s Eviction
- Novack and Macey Attorneys Win Emergency Relief for Corporate Client
- Novack and Macey LLP Collaborates with LAF to Represent Students in Special Education and School Disciplinary Disputes
- Novack and Siegel win appeal and defeat a putative class action at its onset, before any class certification or merits proceedings
- Siegel wins summary judgment for client in lease dispute
- Steve Siegel Explains When and How to Use ADR Cost-Effectively to Resolve Legal Conflicts
- Steve Siegel to Co-Chair 2013 ABA Litigation Section Conference
- Attorneys Siegel and Douglass Successfully Resolve a Multi-Million Dollar Claim for an Alternative Retail Electricity Supplier
- Siegel and Douglass Win Natural Gas Arbitration
- Attorneys Prevail Quickly in Avoiding Enforcement of a Detrimental Signed Agreement
- Novack and Macey Partner Steve Siegel Joins ABA Section of Litigation Leadership
- Novack and Macey Again Selected as a “Go-To” Law Firm
- Overcharge Claim Soundly Defeated
- Novack and Macey LLP Selected as a “GO-TO Law Firm” by a Fortune 250 Company
- Siegel and Campbell Obtain Over $18.9 Million in an Arbitration Award Against a Fund Manager
- Novack and Macey Attorneys Win Dismissal of a Lawsuit Against a Prominent NASCAR Racing Team
- Indiana Contractor-Partner Liable for Construction Defects