Rich has spent over a quarter century dedicating every day to passionately and aggressively advocating for and protecting his clients’ interests. Rich manages the firm’s largest practice group, Workers’ Compensation. He is also an accomplished and successful litigator, bringing a killer instinct and unparalleled focus to representing his clients.

Some of Rich’s recent accomplishments include being elected to the 2022 Illinois Super Lawyers List (given to no more than 5% of lawyers in Illinois), named a Leading Lawyer for 2012, 2015-2022 being honored by SEAK as one of the 50 Most Influential People In Workers’ Compensation. Rich has received the top score for Target Corporation’s nationwide panel of general liability attorneys. In May 2017, Target named him their Bullseye Barrister for an outstanding jury trial and other successful results. He is a highly in demand lecturer and webinar host. He is a leader in a number of national organizations, including Claimsxchange, CLM, RIMS, IDC and IRMA.

Rich co-hosts the longest-running podcast, “Legal Face-Off” on WGN Radio. Rich and his co-host, Tina Martini, analyze and debate breaking legal news and welcome prominent guests including Alan Dershowitz, Gloria Allred, Ben Crump, Jesse Jackson, Lori Lightfoot and many more. Rich is the go-to legal analyst for various media outlets including WGN Radio, WLS, Radio America and WJBC. Rich also hosts several other podcasts, including Trial by Vinyl and Da Movie Pod.

Rich is actively involved in his community, including the Board of Visitors for the Northern Illinois University College of Law, Harriet Tubman Elementary and Lincoln Park High School Local School Counsels and Legal Prep Charter Academy Advisory Board. Legal Prep Charter Academy is Chicago’s only legal-themed charter school. Rich has been honored as Northern Illinois University College of Law Alumnus of the Year and Northern Illinois University College of Law Outstanding College Alumni. Rich is also head junior varsity basketball and football coach for Harriet Tubman Elementary School. He has served as head coach in Oz Park Baseball Association for six years.

Rich is co-founder of Triopolis Productions, a multi-media, multi-platform production company. He is also co-owner of Fame, one of Chicago’s most popular new restaurant/nightclub. Rich was lead producer on ’85: The Greatest Team In Football History, an award-winning documentary about the 1985 Chicago Bears. The documentary featured interviews with over a dozen members of the team including NFL legends Mike Ditka and Mike Singletary, President Barack Obama and Bill Murray. His other credits are A Perfect Storm: The Story Of The 1994 Montreal Expos and John Wayne Gacy, Defending a Monster.

Among Rich’s live theater credits are Renegades, a live production at Cesar’s Palace in Las Vegas featuring legendary athletes Terrell Owens, Jim McMahon and Jose Canseco. His other live productions include Elvis Presley’s Heartbreak Hotel in Concert, Rock of Ages and The Rascals: Once Upon a Dream, conceived and written by legendary E Street band member Steve Van Zandt.

DID YOU KNOW: I have seen Bruce Springsteen in concert well over 110 times. At one of those shows, at Wrigley Field in 2012, my daughter Emma sang with Bruce on stage in front of an intimate audience of 50,000 people. View video here.

  • Education:

    • J.D., Northern Illinois University College of Law, DeKalb, Illinois, 1995
    • B.A., McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, 1992
  • Professional Memberships & Associations:

    • Harriet Tubman Elementary School, Local School Council
    • Canada-US Business Council Chicago
    • Central Ohio Self-Insurers Association
    • Chicago Claims Association
    • Claims Association of Greater Chicago
    • City Club of Chicago
    • Cook County Mandatory Arbitration Program Panel, Chairperson
    • Claims and Litigation Management Alliance
    • ClaimsXchange, Board of Directors
    • DuPage County Bar Association
    • Foodservice Industry Risk Management Association
    • Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel
    • Illinois Manufacturers’ Association
    • Illinois Retail Merchants Association
    • Illinois Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Association
    • Legal Prep Charter Academy, Advisory Board
    • Lincoln Park High School, Local School Counsel
    • National Retail & Restaurant Defense Association
    • Northern Illinois University College of Law, Board of Visitors
    • Sports & Entertainment Risk Management Alliance, CEO & Founder
  • Seminars & Presentations:

    • “Breakout on Multi-State Workers’ Compensation Laws,“ Workers’ Compensation Defense Institute Conference, December 2021
    • “Investigating Illinois & Indiana Repetitive Trauma Claims with Dr. Phillips & Dr. Yahuaca,“ Downey & Lenkov Clients, October 2021
    • “Illinois Workers’ Compensation: Beyond COVID-19 with IWCC Chairman Michael Brennan,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, July 2021
    • “Preparing for and Presenting at the Hearing,” National Business Institute, June 2021
    • “Tips From The Trenches,” Workers’ Compensation Defense Institute, April 2021
    • “Worst Year Ever: 2020 Lessons & 2021 Solutions,“ Downey & Lenkov Clients, March 2021
    • “COVID Claims, Compensability and Vaccines, Oh My!,” Workers’ Compensation Defense Institute, February 2021
    • “Defending Hip Claims: A Medical & Legal Perspective,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, February 2021
    • “What Horror Movies Teach Us About Workers’ Compensation,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, October 2020
    • “Comparing COVID-19 WC Claims in NY, CA & IL,” ClaimsXchange, September 2020
    • “A Multi-State Analysis of Common Compensability Issues Confronting Workers’ Compensation Claims Handlers,” WCIvirtual Conference, August 2020
    • “How To Get A Zero,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, July 2020
    • “Addressing the New Illinois Workers’ Compensation Law,” Illinois Retail Merchants Association, July 2020
    • “Workers’ Compensation Presumption and COVID-19,” Business Insurance, July 2020
    • “Understanding The New Illinois Workers’ Compensation Law,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, June 2020
    • “Workers’ Compensation Post COVID-19: Occupational Injuries & Telemedicine,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, May 2020
    • “COVID-19 Psychological Claims,” Claimsxchange, May 2020
    • “COVID-19 Workers’ Compensation,” Chicagoland Associated General Contractors, April 2020
    • “WCDI Answers Your COVID-19 Questions, Part II,” WCDI, April 2020
    • “Illinois COVID Update and Takeaways for Other States,” WorkCompCentral, April 2020
    • “Workers’ Comp Management Amid COVID-19,” Business Insurance, April 2020
    • “COVID-19 Hot Topics,” Claimsxchange Industry Insights, March 2020
    • “WCDI Answers Your Coronavirus Claims Questions,” WCDI, March 2020
    • “Your Employee Has COVID-19 Workers’ Compensation Claim–Now What?,” Claimsxchange Industry Insights, March 2020
    • “Lockton Feud,“ Lockton Law Day, February 2020
    • “What Holiday Movies Can Teach You About Handling Workers’ Compensation Claims,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, December 2019
    • “3rd Annual BDL Great American WC Quiz,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, September 2019
    • “Breakout on Multi-State Workers’ Compensation Laws,“ WCI Conference, August 2019
    • “Top 10 Myths About IL Workers’ Compensation,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, June 2019
    • “New Case Law You Need To Know,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, May 2019
    • “PTSD Claims from First Responders,” CLM Workers’ Compensation Conference, May 2019
    • “How Does The IWCC Work?,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, March 2019
    • “Top Ten Red Flags,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, January 2019
    • “2018 Review,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, December 2018
    • “Workers’ Compensation Issues Raised By Millennials Part II,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, November 2018
    • “Defending Shoulder & Knee Injuries,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, September 2018
    • “2nd Annual BDL Great American WC Quiz,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, July 2018
    • “Injuries Away From Work,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, June 2018
    • “Settlement Strategies,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, May 2018
    • “Ask Us Anything Part II,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, April 2018
    • “When Is An Employee Not An ‘Employee’?,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, February 2018
    • “The Other Side: 5 IL WC Issues From A Petitioner’s Attorney’s POV,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, January 2018
    • “Ask Us Anything,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, December 2017
    • “Horror Stories: The 6 Scariest Cases In IL Workers’ Compensation,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, October 2017
    • “Top 10 Differences Between IL WC & GL Claims Part II,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, September 2017
    • “Management Of Common Cervical & Lumbar Pathologies,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, August 2017
    • “Top 10 Differences Between IL WC & GL Claims,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, July 2017
    • “You Asked For It, You Got It Part II,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, June 2017
    • “The Power Of Video Surveillance As A Defense Strategy,” FIRMA Chicago Conference, June 2017
    • “3 Common Ethical Dilemmas From 3 Different Perspectives,” 2017 CLM & Business Insurance Workers’ Compensation Conference, May 2017
    • “Case Law Update,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, April 2017
    • “The Ups & Downs Of Upper & Lower Extremity Claims,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, March 2017
    • “Workers’ Compensation Mock Trial,” Artex Risk Management Conference, February 2017
    • “Illinois Workers’ Compensation Reform,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, February 2017
    • “Workers’ Compensation Under Trump,” Illinois Manufacturers’ Association, January 2017
    • “New OSHA Regulations,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, January 2017
    • “1st Annual Great American BDL WC Quiz,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, December 2016
    • “Common Workers’ Compensation Issues Defined Part II,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, October 2016
    • “Common Workers’ Compensation Issues Defined,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, August 2016
    • “Illinois Workers’ Compensation Law,” Workers’ Compensation Educational Conference, August 2016
    • “My Toughest Claim: Your Fellow Claims Professionals Discuss Real Workers’ Compensation Cases,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, July 2016
    • “The 5 Factors Determining Illinois Permanency,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, June 2016
    • “10 Common Causation Scenarios And How To Defend Them,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, May 2016
    • “Defending Pain Claims,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, April 2016
    • “Stratified General Liability Claims: Fast Tracking and Other Techniques,” CLM Annual Conference, April 2016
    • “Compensable Or Not? 10 Common Accident Scenarios And How To Defend Them,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, March 2016
    • “What The Movies Can Teach You About Handing Workers’ Compensation Claims,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, February 2016
    • “Workers’ Compensation Issues Raised By Millennials,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, January 2016
    • “Ask A Workers’ Compensation Attorney Anything,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, December 2015
    • “Workers’ Compensation Horror Stories,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, October 2015
    • “Reduce Your Legal Expenses Now,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, September 2015
    • “Illinois Workers’ Compensation,” Conference On Multi-State Workers’ Compensation Laws, August 2015
    • “You Asked For It, You Got It: Your Most Requested WC Questions Answered,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, August 2015
    • “More Top 5 Lists,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, July 2015
    • “Our Hottest Illinois Workers’ Compensation Top 5 Lists,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, June 2015
    • “Workers’ Compensation Fraud: What You Can Do About It,” 35th Anniversary SEAK, Inc. National Workers’ Compensation And Occupational Medicine Conference, June 2015
    • “Workers’ Compensation 4 Ways: Strategies For Defending Claims In 4 States,” Downey & Lenkov Clients, June 2015
  • Articles & Publications:

    • “Border War: Key Differences Between Illinois and Indiana,” Downey & Lenkov Workers’ Compensation Newsletter, June 2021 – Present
    • “Perspectives: Tips for Rebutting COVID-19 Presumption,” Business Insurance, June 2021
    • “3 Questions With…,” Downey & Lenkov Workers’ Compensation Newsletter, October 2020 – March 2021
    • “Illinois Legislature Extends COVID-19 Rebuttal Presumption,” Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, January 2021
    • “Amendment to Extend COVID-19 Rebuttal Presumption Filed,” Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, January 2021
    • “Dear Rich,” Downey & Lenkov Workers’ Compensation Newsletter, January 2019 – August 2020
    • “Gov. Pritzker Signs COVID-19 Workers’ Compensation Law,” Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, June 2020
    • “Illinois Passes COVID-19 Workers’ Compensation Law,“ Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, May 2020
    • “Pro-Employee Workers’ Compensation Law Coming,“ Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, May 2020
    • “Illinois Repeals Workers’ Compensation Rule Change,” Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, April 2020
    • “Temporary Restraining Order Nullifies Illinois Workers’ Compensation Rule Change,” Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, April 2020
    • Business Groups Sue IWCC Over Rule Change,” Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, April 2020
    • “IWCC Emergency Rule Change For COVID-19,” Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, April 2020
    • “Dramatic Expansion of IL Employees Workers’ Compensation Rights,” Downey & Lenkov Client Alert, April 2020
    • “Your Employee Has A COVID-19 Workers’ Compensation Claim…Now What?,” Claimsxchange, March 2020
    • “How Do You Deal With Difficult People?,” Workers’ Compensation Magazine, October/November 2016 Issue
    • “What Types Of Workers’ Compensation Claims Have You Seen Involving Workplace Violence?,” Workers’ Compensation Magazine, August/September 2016 Issue
    • “Why Is Workers’ Compensation Fraud Such A Major Problem?,” Workers’ Compensation Magazine, June/July 2016 Issue
    • “Why Do Workers’ Compensation Claims Cost So Much?,” Workers’ Compensation Magazine, April/May 2016 Issue
    • “Why Do Claims Stagnate?,” Workers’ Compensation Magazine, February/March 2016 Issue
    • “Chicago E-Cigarette Ban: Your Workers’ Compensation Exposure,” January 2014
    • “Getting to Yes, the Do’s and Don’ts of Mediation,” Litigation Management Magazine, Summer 2012
    • “Illinois Workers’ Compensation Reform,” The Illinois Manufacturer Magazine, Winter 2012
    • “Workers’ Compensation Claims by At-Home Employees,” Business Insurance Magazine, September 2011
  • News & Insights:

Chicago, Illinois 312-377-1501 | Crown Point, Indiana 219-488-2590
Indianapolis, Indiana 219-488-2590 | Milwaukee, Wisconsin 312-377-1501

Chicago, Illinois

312-377-1501


Crown Point, Indiana

219-488-2590


Indianapolis, Indiana

219-488-2590


Milwaukee, Wisconsin

312-377-1501