Richard M. Hoffman
Illinois Bar, 1990
U.S. District Court,
Northern District of Illinois, 1996
Western District of Michigan, 2000
Northern District of Illinois Trial Bar, 2002
Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, 2005
Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals, 2005
Central District of Illinois, 2007
J.D., University of Minnesota, magna cum laude, 1990
B.S., University of Minnesota, 1987
Mr. Hoffman is an experienced trial lawyer who has litigated in both federal and state courts on behalf of individuals, small and mid-sized businesses and sophisticated multi-national Fortune 100 corporations. He has extensive experience in mediations and arbitrations, jury and bench trials, appeals and settlement negotiations. His practice has included several groundbreaking commercial litigation matters that have involved novel evidentiary and legal issues, such as obtaining the first ever jury verdict of $156 million in an unprecedented action under the federal Anti-Terrorism Act. He has represented clients in cases involving breach of contract, business divorces, common law and statutory torts, data privacy and security, securities and consumer class actions, trade secrets, license disputes, successor liability and defamation. Mr. Hoffman focuses a significant portion of his practice on real estate litigation, including foreclosures, construction disputes, lease disputes, limited partnership disputes, and lien disputes.
- Breach of Contract – Successfully represented land owner seeking indemnification under easement agreement for losses suffered due to flooding. Obtained seven figure judgment.
- E-Commerce/Commercial Dispute – Helped Toys “R” Us to protect its brand and regain control of the content of its web site by representing it in a billion dollar dispute with Amazon.com, resulting in termination of the parties’ contract and the recovery of more than $12 million in misappropriated fees. On appeal, Toys “R” Us’ damage claim was reinstated and it was able to obtain another $51 million in settlement.
- Statutory Torts – Obtained a $156 million judgment for terrorism victims in the first suit brought under the federal Anti-Terrorism Act against U.S. based financial supporters of Hamas. Seventh Circuit’s en banc ruling became the seminal case establishing the standards governing liability under the Act.
- Partnership Litigation – Obtained a seven-figure trial verdict for a limited partner against the general partner of a series of real estate limited partnerships.
- Mortgage Foreclosure and Creditors’ Rights- Represents local lenders in a variety of actions to enforce defaulted loans, including mortgage foreclosures, confessions of judgment and actions on personal guaranties.
- Landlord Tenant – Negotiated a seven-figure settlement on behalf of Urban Retail Properties in a lawsuit brought against a major national retailer that had breached its lease.
- Consumer Class Action – Protected national retail and restaurant industry clients from potentially multi-billion dollar liability as the lead attorney in cases brought by plaintiffs asserting claims under the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act.
- Insurance Class Action – Defending an Illinois based insurance company in two putative class actions challenging company claims practices and policy forms.
- Trade Secrets – Successfully defended a manufacturer in a trade secrets misappropriation case. Obtained a ruling that the client never used the information in question. Client subsequently negotiated a favorable settlement.
- Licensing – Defended at trial a manufacturer accused of infringing on patents and trademarks. Case focused on validity and scope of client’s license.
- Zoning – Prosecuted a claim that village improperly denied client’s application for a special use permit.
Publications and Presentations:
- Co-author, “Hawala Banking: A potential Tool for Funding Terrorism,” Bank & Lender Liability Litigation Reporter, Vol. 14, Issue 09, September 15, 2008.
- Speaker, “Emerging Class Action Threat: Credit Card Data Protection Under FACTA,” Class Action Law Monitor and Stafford Publications Teleconference, October 16, 2007 and March 12, 2008.
- Speaker, “Understanding the Law of Data Protection: How to Comply with Your Legal Obligations,” Navigant Roundtable, October 30, 2007.
- Co-author, “Retailers Under Siege on Data Security: Today, FACTA Class Actions; Tomorrow…?” Retail Law Strategist, Vol. 7, Issue 10, October 2007.
- Co-author, “Class Actions Under FACTA: Lots of Activity, But What Do They Actually Accomplish?” WLF Legal Backgrounder, Vol. 22, No. 38, September 21, 2007.
- Co-author, “Is Dumpster Diving the Real Threat? FACTA Class Actions Consume Judicial Resources But Do Nothing to Make Consumers Safer,” Andrews Litigation Reporter, June 2007.