| Practice Description: |
Matthew A. Passen, partner with Passen Law Group, has a broad range of experience in cases involving serious personal injury and wrongful death, including motor vehicle and transportation accidents, defective products and medical negligence. He also represents crime victims in civil actions against responsible individuals or entities.
Notable Cases and Results:
$10.9 million - Verdict in Home Explosion: A Cook County, Illinois, jury returned a verdict of $10,875,622 against a concrete sealer manufacturer, and in favor of a man who was severely burned in a household explosion while using the product to seal his basement floor. Concrete sealer vapors migrated across the basement floor to a utility room where they were ignited by a water heater pilot light, causing a large explosion.
$1.4 million - Settlement
$900,000 - Medical Malpractice / Wrongful Death: A 59-year-old man died after his primary care physician failed to adequately diagnose and respond to his complaints. The man emailed his primary care physician describing his symptoms and stating he had "never felt worse in his life." The defendant doctor replied via email diagnosing the man’s condition and prescribing certain home remedies. The doctor never recommended the man come to his office for an in-person examination or go to the emergency room if his condition worsened. The man died days later of a bacterial infection.
$610,000 - Record Verdict for Soft Tissue Injuries: A Cook County jury returned a verdict of $610,000 in favor of a husband and wife, ages 80 and 76 respectively, who were rear-ended by a semi truck on I-90 near the Illinois/Wisconsin border on April 12, 2004. The defense admitted negligence, but claimed the plaintiffs were not injured as a result of the accident to the degree and extent alleged.
DePaul University College of Law, J.D., 2006
Law School Honors/Involvement:
Top of his class; summa cum laude; Order of the Coif; served as a judicial clerk for the Honorable Ronald A. Guzman, United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois; interned with the United States Attorney’s Office, Northern District of Illinois
University of Michigan, economics, 2002
Undergraduate School Honors/Involvement:
Magna cum laude; Phi Beta Kappa; played four years of hockey as a member of the University of Michigan Club Hockey Team
Bar/Professional Association Involvement:
- Chicago Bar Association
- Chair, Young Lawyers Section, 2015
- Chicago Bar Foundation
- Past President, Young Professionals Board
- American Bar Association
- Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section
- Vice Chair, Trial Techniques Committee and Automobile Law Committee
- National Crime Victim Bar Association
- Illinois Trial Lawyers Association
Awards; Honors; Distinctions:
- American Association for Justice
- New Lawyers Division Board of Governors (former member)
- 40 Under 40, Law Bulletin Publishing Company, 2015
- Top 40 Under 40 Trial Attorney, The National Trial Lawyers, 2015
- Emerging Lawyer, Law Bulletin Publishing Company, 2015-present
- Top 40 Litigation Lawyers Under 40, American Society of Legal Advocates, 2014
- Rising Star, SuperLawyers, 2012-2015
- United Cerebral Palsy Association of Greater Chicago
- Board of Directors (former member)
- Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago
2015 graduate of Trial Lawyers College
Published Legal Writing:
End Distracted Driving, CBA Record, November 2015
Giving Back, CBA Record, October 2015
Lessons From the Ranch, CBA Record, September 2015
The Complete Lawyer, CBA Record, July/August 2015
Proving Damages in Motor Vehicle Crash Cases Involving Mild Traumatic Brain Injury, ABA Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section, Automobile Law Committee Newsletter, Fall 2014
Preparing and Conducting Effective Cross-Examination, ABA Section of Litigation, Young Advocates, September 2013
Lawyers Aim to Curb Distracted Driving, Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, March 5, 2012.
Social Host Liability for Underage Alcohol-Related Injuries, CBA Record, October 2011.
Protecting Those Who Protect Us: The Fireman’s Rule, CBA Record, February/March 2011.
Finding My Ironman, Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, November 10, 2010.
Tort Immunity for Public Hospitals and Medical Professionals in Illinois, CBA Record, September 2010.
Conflict Resolved: Settling Defendants Not On Verdict Form, CBA Record, April 2009.
Should Settling Defendants Appear on a Jury Verdict Form?, CBA Record, February/March 2009.
Illinois Supreme Court Expands Scope of Collateral Source Rule, CBA Record, September 2008.
Medical Societies’ Peer-Review Authority: Professional Self-Regulation or Witness Intimidation?, CBA Record, May 2008.
Civil Remedies for Victims of Crime in Illinois, The National Center for Victims of Crime, November 2015
Is This Admissible?, American Bar Association Tort Trial Insurance Practice Section, Moderator, July 2015
Judicial Panel on Persuasiveness in Court, Chicago Bar Association, Moderator, November 2014
Using an iPad in Trial, Chicago Bar Association, November 2014
How To Create A Trial Notebook For Use At Trial, Chicago Bar Association, Moderator, February 2014
Product Liability Update, Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, Product Liability Committee, January 2014
Deposition Practice in Illinois: Top 10 Practical Considerations, Chicago Bar Association, November 2013
Strategies for Success At Trial, Chicago Bar Association, October 2013
Trial Technique Strategies, Chicago Bar Association, Moderator, February 2011
Passen Law Group is a Chicago-based law firm representing individuals and families of those who have suffered severe, permanent, and catastrophic injury or death due to the carelessness or recklessness of others. Our founding partner, Stephen Passen, is a top-rated Chicago personal injury lawyer with over 30 years of experience handling sophisticated personal injury cases in Illinois and nationwide. Our dedication and experience has resulted in record verdicts and settlements for our clients.
We are a boutique personal injury law firm; we handle a limited number of cases involving serious personal injuries, such as brain injury, spinal cord damage, birth injury, and wrongful death. This allows our lawyers to devote our full energy and passion to each case and every client.
We are deeply concerned that our clients' rights be protected, that they receive full compensation for their injuries, and that they understand the legal process involving their case. We appreciate the great responsibility we owe to our clients, knowing that the service we provide can significantly impact their lives and their family members' lives. The damages we secure for our clients must compensate them for yesterday, today, and tomorrow.
We are experienced trial lawyers. Our lawyers prepare every case with the expectation that it will go to trial, and our courtroom success is well documented. We have an established reputation as trial lawyers, which gives us leverage at the negotiating table, and often results in our clients being able to settle their cases for substantial compensation.
We are passionate Chicago personal injury lawyers and recognize our responsibility to keep our clients informed, to ease their fears, and to be available when questions arise. We pride ourselves not only on our successes in obtaining excellent results, but also in our ability to earn the trust of our clients, and to make their experience as positive as possible.
Family: Married with two young children