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Schiff Hardin LLP

Private Wealth Law

5 ranked individualsBand 2IllinoisHigh Net Worth 2021 View ranking table

Chambers Review

Chambers Research is conducted by 200 Research Analysts, across 200 jurisdictions and provides nearly 6,000 rankings tables. Annually we collect hundreds of thousands of responses from clients, the majority via in-depth interview. Learn more about our methodology.

Schiff Hardin's private wealth offering includes planning for closely held businesses, family offices and charitable entities. "They are very responsive and provide very creative solutions. They have a very good reputation and are a solid firm," says one source.

An interviewee describes the team as "fantastic," enthusing: "They are some of the best lawyers in the city." Another source states: "Those who I have worked with reflect a high level of intellect, expertise, dedication, responsiveness and a practical, get things done approach."

Notable practitioners

David Blickenstaff focuses his practice on trust and estate litigation. "He is extraordinary," says a source, who explains: "He is very trusted, where other counsel fail, he succeeds. He is often brought in when you need a heavyweight. He has the diplomacy and EQ, in addition to the technical skills." Another interviewee states: "He is very level-headed even in the face of serious problems. He is always able to come up with thoughtful solutions even under pressure."

Debra Stetter is "extremely intelligent, thoughtful and an incredible communicator," states an interviewee. Stetter has a wealth of experience assisting clients with estate and tax planning. "She is always the same no matter how crazy things get," says a source, who adds: "She comes up with great ways to communicate with the family. She knows how to explain things to the family and makes them feel comfortable."

Sarah Kerr Severson is described as a "thoughtful and careful lawyer" by one source. Another interviewee says: "She is very practical to work with." Severson advises wealthy individuals and business owners on succession planing and charitable matters. "She is a very strong client manager and a strong project manager. She has strong communication and interpersonal skills and she is a natural with clients," comments an interviewee.

Susan Bart "is one of the smartest people I know," enthuses a market insider, who adds: "She is incredibly practical in her approach to issues. Her solutions are down to earth and practical." Another interviewee states: "She really is a leading name in the field, she is at the cutting edge and has her finger on the pulse." Bart is a respected attorney who assists wealthy clients with complex estate and gift planning. A source says she is an "excellent attorney" with "a high standard of professionalism" and "very strong technical skills."

Thomas Abendroth "is a national expert on practically everything," states a source, who explains: "He is a great technician. He knows the laws, rulings, and the background when you go to him with a problem. He is very practical in the application of his knowledge." Another market insider says that Abendroth has "good communication skills" and "very astute legal skills, while taking a very practical approach to client matters." One interviewee states: "Tom is thoughtful, kind, personable, deeply knowledgeable and patient. His explanation of issues is thorough and comprehensive."

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Ranked Individuals

Chambers Research is conducted by 200 Research Analysts, across 200 jurisdictions and provides nearly 6,000 rankings tables. Annually we collect hundreds of thousands of responses from clients, the majority via in-depth interview. Learn more about our methodology.

Illinois

Private Wealth Law


David C Blickenstaff
Band 3
Debra Stetter
Band 4
Sarah Kerr Severson
Band 3
Susan T Bart
Band 1
Thomas W. Abendroth
Band 1