Jason Altman never forgets that all the professional excellence, experience and technical knowledge of the law he possesses after nearly twenty-five years of litigation in the Chicago area needs to be directed at one simple – but not easy – goal. Getting things done. For Jason, getting results – efficiently, cost effectively and meaningfully – are the whole point of a lawyer’s work. Jason believes that his job is not to run up legal bills, but to get the case over the finish line as quickly, inexpensively and completely as humanly possible.
Jason has represented clients in a wide-variety of commercial litigation in both state and federal courts. He represents clients in disputes involving complex contracts, the UCC, insurance coverage, equitable remedies, construction and real estate, and complex federal and state statutes and implementing regulations, to name a few. His clients tend to be entities in the financial services industry, small and mid-sized businesses, and individuals, none of whom have infinite legal budgets and all of whom prefer to focus on their businesses rather than litigation.
A lot of lawyers are delighted to talk about their professional qualifications – experience, expertise and major cases. Far fewer are typically interested in discussing their ability to manage human beings – idiosyncratic judges, scorched-earth opposing counsel – and moreover, to do it effectively, and cost-consciously. Jason is, because that’s what he does. If you’re enmeshed in commercial litigation in Illinois, Jason is the attorney you want on your side – and the attorney you don’t want on the other side.
His approach to litigation is based on a combination of efficiency and thoroughness. Jason will look under every stone and rock, but will also explore settlement as early as he can. His job is not to spend his clients’ money on their behalf, but to remember that legal work is in support of a business – not the other way around. He’s particularly not a fan of scorched-earth litigation. He is a big fan of metrics, professionalism, civility and expertise.
He’s often the attorney clients call in when a case has gone off the rails. As one example, early in 2017 Jason was retained less than three months before trial in a matter that had been dragging on for seven years. Jason knocked-out half of the plaintiff's claims on summary judgment, and got a complete defense verdict at trial on the rest. Case over. Client happy. Not uncommon for him.
It’s easy to find lawyers who will take endless depositions, posture in court, write and confer at great length and seemingly find endless reasons to make the unpleasant necessity of litigation as lengthy and complex as possible. It is not easy to find lawyers who understand that their job is to vigorously protect your interests, and to bring the case to a quick, reasonable end.
Unless, of course, you call Jason Altman.
- Washington University School of Law, J.D., 1994
- Notes and Comments Editor, Washington University Journal of Urban and Contemporary Law
- Judicial extern to Magistrate Judge Gerald Cohn of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
- American University, B.A., 1991, cum laude
- United States Supreme Court
- United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
- United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
- United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois
- United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
- United States District Court for the District of Colorado
- Admitted pro hac vice in numerous courts throughout the country
- “Expert Testimony,” presented to the National Association of Certified Valuation Analysts, 2002 and 2003.
- “What’s New in the Law,” presented to the Remodelers Council of the Home Builders Association of Greater Chicago, 2002 and 2003.
- Admissibility of Forensic DNA Profiling Evidence: A Movement Away from Frye v. United States and a Step Toward the Federal Rules of Evidence: United States v. Jakobetz, 955 F.2d 786 (2d. Cir. 1992), cert. denied, 113 S. Ct. 104 (1992), 44 Washington University Journal of Urban and Contemporary Law 211 (1993).