Kirsten L. Kaiser Kus
Kirsten’s practice encompasses workers’ compensation, general litigation and criminal defense. Kirsten takes an aggressive approach, moving cases quickly towards closure through an extremely efficient litigation style. Kirsten guides her clients throughout all phases of litigation and frequently lectures regarding unique case handling techniques.
Kirsten’s recent accomplishments include winning Claims and Litigation Management Alliance’s Professionals of the Year Awards in the Outside Defense Counsel category and being recognized by her peers in the 28th Edition of Best Lawyers in America for the third consecutive year, ranked among the top 5% of private practice attorneys nationwide. Kirsten has also been selected to the Indiana Super Lawyers Rising Star list from 2017-2021, an exclusive list recognizing no more than 2.5% of lawyers in Indiana.
She has successfully tried and argued numerous cases before all of the Administrative Law Judges of the Indiana Workers’ Compensation Board and the Social Security Disability Administration. In addition, Kirsten has tried general liability, medical malpractice and criminal cases before the Indiana trial courts.
Kirsten has an extensive background in criminal defense representation ranging from misdemeanor to felony offenses, and specializes in operating while intoxicated charges and criminal record expungements. Kirsten is experienced in mediation and subrogation matters, including ERISA, Medicare and Medicaid and serves on numerous occasions as Judge Pro Tempore for the Honorable Judge Cantrell in Lake Superior Court.
She frequently volunteers her time with the Porter County Animal Shelter and donated a year of pro bono legal services to aid in their representation. She is an active member of the Women Lawyers Association of Indiana and the Lake and Porter County Bar Associations. While in college, Kirsten was President of the Women in Lawyers Association, executive board member of the Hellenic Law Association and an active volunteer with the Richard Blennerhasset Tax Law Society. In her free time Kirsten enjoys spending time with her husband, son and walking her two dogs.
DID YOU KNOW: I am an advocate for pit bulls and rescue animals, and fights against breed discrimination legislation. I own two rescue pit bulls, Meatball and Jax.
- J.D., Valparaiso University School of Law, Valparaiso, Indiana 2008
- B.A., Ball State University, Muncie, Indiana 2005
Professional Memberships & Associations
- Northwest Indiana Influential Women Association
- Claims & Litigation Management Alliance
- Indiana State Bar Association
- Lake County Bar Association
- Porter County Bar Association
- Women Lawyers Association of Indiana
Seminars & Presentations:
- “Breakout on Multi-State Workers’ Compensation Laws,“ Workers’ Compensation Defense Institute Conference, December 2021
- “Tips From The Trenches,” Workers’ Compensation Defense Institute, April 2021
- “COVID Claims, Compensability and Vaccines, Oh My!,” Workers’ Compensation Defense Institute, February 2021
- “How To Get A Zero,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, July 2020
- “Indiana Forms: Taking a Claim From Start to Finish,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, March 2020
- “Bending, Flexing & Rotating: Defending Shoulder, Elbow & Wrist Claims,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, November 2019
- “Workers’ Compensation Seminar,” South Bend Orthopaedics, June 2019
- “Aggressive Claims Handling,” CLM Workers’ Compensation Conference, May 2019
- “Indiana Forms: Taking A Claim From Start To Finish,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, April 2019
- “Top Reasons Why Plaintiffs Retain Counsel,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, February 2019
- “Key Differences in Illinois & Indiana Workers’ Compensation” Downey & Lenkov Clients, August 2018
- “The Red Zone: Indiana Workers’ Compensation,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, November 2017
- “Top Employer Mistakes in Indiana,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, November 2017
- “Top Employer Mistakes in the Claims Process,” CLM & Business Insurance Workers’ Compensation Conference, May 2017
- “Indiana Forms: Taking A Claim From Start To Finish,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, September 2016
- Merrillville High School Mock Trial Competition Judge, February 2016
- “Crossing The Border: Top 5 Issues In Illinois & Indiana WC,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, November 2015
- Merrillville High School’s Career Day, April 2015
- “Workers’ Compensation Claims: Initial Investigation Strategies,” Beyond Safety & Reliability Conference & Expo, March 2015
- “Strategies & Tactics For Defending Indiana Workers’ Compensation Claims,” February 2015
- Indiana High School Regional Mock Trial Competition Judge, February 2015
- “Resolve Ethical Issues in your Practice,” October 2013
Articles & Publications:
- “Indiana Legislative Update,” Downey & Lenkov Illinois Workers’ Compensation Newsletter, November 2020 – Present
- “Hazards At Home: Mitigating the Dangers of an At-Home Workplace,” CLM Magazine, September 2020
- “Indiana COVID-19 Claims,“ Downey & Lenkov Illinois Workers’ Compensation Newsletter, April 2020
- “Dear Kirsten: Indiana Perspective,” Downey & Lenkov Illinois Workers’ Compensation Newsletter, August 2019