Photo of Lew R.C. Bricker

Lew R.C. Bricker

Partner

Education

University of Illinois College of Law, J.D., 1991, cum laude

University of Illinois, B.A., 1988, cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa

Admissions

Illinois

In one of Lew Bricker’s most memorable cases he had the jury nodding along with his closing argument; a true testament to his litigation skills. He defends clients in the areas of commercial transportation, products liability and commercial litigation. He also counsels clients and attorneys on best practices for managing and litigating issues involving electronically stored information and e-discovery. Additionally, he leads the firm’s Rapid Response Team, coordinating responses to catastrophic losses for clients in the Midwest.

Lew’s clients include motor carriers, logistics providers, product manufacturers, retailers, distributors and their insurers. He represents many clients in commercial and contract disputes and counsels clients on best risk mitigation practices, business structure, management and marketing practices in the transportation, retail and manufacturing industries.

As chair of the firm’s commercial transportation group Lew oversees a team providing comprehensive litigation and transactional services to the transportation industry. As a member of the firm’s Executive Committee, Lew works to ensure that SmithAmundsen provides the best possible service to clients across the globe.

Lew currently serves as chair of the USLAW Network and was elected to the Network’s Executive Committee and Board of Directors. In 2008 he served as the chair of the USLAW Transportation Practice Group. He designed and coordinated the Transportation Motor Carrier Boot Camp, a training program for transportation lawyers held every two years.

Lew holds many titles, but husband and dad are among his most cherished. He is involved with his kids and active in the community where he raises his family. He coached his kids in youth sports and ran the community baseball and softball organizations for several years, overseeing more than 150 teams. During his tenure he rebuilt the softball program, restored the organization financially and saw teams to multiple championships. He currently serves as past commissioner. He also served on the local high school district facilities community, helping to identify the needs of the local high school and lobbying for the passage of a referendum.

Honors

  • Martindale-Hubbell AV® Preeminent™ rated
  • Named a BTI Client Service All-Star, 2012
  • Selected to the Illinois Super Lawyers List: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
  • Selected by the Leading Lawyers Network as a "Leading Lawyer" in transportation defense law
  • USLAW O’Hagan Award Recipient, 2008

Memberships & Involvement

  • Member: SmithAmundsen Executive Committee
  • USLAW: Chair: 2016-present; Vice Chair: 2015-2016; Treasurer 2013-2015; Transportation Practice Group Chair 2007-2008, Vice Chairman 2006-2007, Secretary 2006; Business Litigation Group: Sub Chair 2010-2011
  • TELFA: Board of Directors, ex officio representative, 2016- present 
  • Technology Liaison: Defense Research Institute Diversity Committee
  • Section Council Member: Illinois State Bar Association Public Utilities and Transportation Council, 2004 – present; Illinois State Bar Association Tort Law Council 2004 – present
  • Member: Trucking Industry Defense Association (TIDA); Transportation Lawyers Association (TLA); Chicago Traffic Club; American Bar Association; Illinois State Bar Association; Intermodal Association of North America (IANA); Defense Research Institute (DRI)

Experience

  • Handled a broker liability lawsuit where an individual was left in vegetative state. More than $25 million dollar was demanded by the plaintiff, but the matter was ultimately settled in the low six figures.
  • Handled an admitted liability case where the plaintiff claimed seven figures in damages and sought mid seven figures at trial. We received a verdict for one third of claimed damages.
  • Represented a window manufacturer in a case where a minor fell out of a window to death. Summary judgment was won for the manufacturer.
  • Represented a hotel in a massive claim of alleged food poisoning. Over 150 claims were made, fewer than ten suits filed. Total payouts were in the five figures.

Publications

Presentations & Events

  • Defending the Reptile and Witness Preparation
    Client Presentation, January 31, 2017
  • Why Broker Liability Matters; Load and Unloading Cases
    Client Presentation, January 17, 2017
  • Broker and Logistics Liability, Preservation and Spoilation, and DOT and OSHA Issues for Trucking Companies
    Client Presentation, November 9, 2016
  • The U.S. Election and its Effect on Business
    Seminar, Trans European Law Firm Alliance, Paris, France, November 5, 2016
  • Preservation and Spoliation
    Client Presentation, Pittsburgh, PA, September 12, 2016
  • American Trucking Associations; Seminar, Bellevue, Washington, July 19, 2016
  • Strafford, Webinar, July 8, 2016
  • Dissecting Written Policies: The Do's and Don'ts of Crafting Safety Policies
    USLAW Client Conference, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA, April 8, 2016
  • The Parameters of a Roadside Inspection:  What They Can Ask for and What They Can’t
    American Trucking Association Forum for Motor Carrier General Counsel, July 21, 2015
  • Insurance Issues in Trucking Litigation
    Client Seminar, Brookfield, WI, July 7, 2015
  • How to Make a Negative into a Positive
    USLAW Client Conference, San Antonio, TX, April 9, 2015
  • Preservation and Best Practices for Motor Carriers
    Client In-house Training Meetings, Sunset Hills, MO, February 24, 2015
  • An Attorney's Ethical Responsibilities When Serving as Local Counsel
    USLAW Client Conference, San Francisco, CA, September 20, 2014
  • A Series of Unfortunate Events . . . Insurance Issues in Litigation
    American Trucking Association Forum for Motor Carrier General Counsel, July 16, 2014
  • Anti-Indemnity, Preventability Determinations and Jurisdiction
    Client Seminar, April 2014
  • Best Fleets to Drive For -- Broker Liability
    Marsh Educational Conference, Windsor, ON, Canada, June 11, 2013
  • Dissecting The Plaintiff's Playbooko
    USLAW Conference, Tucson, AZ, April 2013