Stephen J. Friedman Appointed as Arbitrator to the IWCC
Rusin, Maciorowski & Friedman, Ltd. congratulates Stephen J. Friedman, our partner and colleague, on his appointment as Arbitrator to the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission effective September 17, 2014. Steve was one of our original founding partners in 1984. Previously, he was an associate and partner at Rooks, Pitts and Poust from 1975 through 1984. We appreciate his 30 years of service and dedication to our clients and to our firm.
Steve’s many years of experience in Workers’ Compensation and Employers’ Liability has made him an integral part of our firm. His experience has an emphasis on the interrelationship between Workers’ Compensation and common law liability including lien calculation and recovery. He also has experience in handling employment discrimination, wrongful discharge, ADA and intentional tort matters. Steve established the standard for “Good Faith” settlement under the Contribution Act and was lead defense counsel defending a class-action age discrimination case arising out of an early retirement program.
Steve is a published author having written Chapters 3 and 4 of the 1981 ILCLE OSHA Practice Handbook on “Defenses” and “Preparing the Case for Trial,” Chapter 3 of the OSHA Supplement in 1986, and “Direct Examination” for PLI, Anatomy of an Automobile Accident Case. He has been a contributing author for the Illinois State Bar “Trial Briefs,” the “Workers’ Compensation Newsletter,” the “Trial Diplomacy Journal,” and the “International Association of Defense Counsel Newsletter.” He also prepared seminar materials for the NBI Illinois Labor and Employment Liability in 1994, WCCA Workers’ Compensation Investigation in 1999, Lorman Seminar on “Return to Work Issues in Workers’ Compensation” in 2000, 2007 and 2008. He also wrote an article for the Horton Newsletter on Return to Work, Discipline and Discharge: Tough Decisions in Tough Time in 2008.
Steve has also been a frequent speaker. He has presented at the Greater Chicago Area Safety Council, Local Chambers of Commerce, and Illinois Manufacturers’ Association regarding Workers’ Compensation. He has spoken on OSHA, “Right to Know” regulations, “Auto Accident Cases” for the PLI, “Illinois Labor and Employment Liability” for the NBI on Injuries in the Workplace, Avery Dennison “Illinois Workers’ Compensation Conference” on Fraud, at the WCCA 1999 “Workers’ Compensation Investigation,” at the 2000 Lorman Seminar on “Return to Work Issues in Workers’ Compensation,” at Rock Valley Association in 2004 and 2006, and at the Lorman Seminars on “Workers Compensation Update in Illinois,” at the Workers Compensation Update in both 2007 and 2008, the Dixon Chambers 2005 Medical Amendments, in 2006. He also judged the American Bar Association Moot Court National Finals in 2004, 2012 and 2013 and the Law Student Negotiation Competition in 2014. He has been a contributor and speaker at the IICLE Basic Workers Compensation-Evidence in 2013 and IICLE Workers Compensation Institute-Utilization Review 2014.
In 2004, Steve was voted Leading Lawyer status based on a Law Bulletin Publishing Company survey of his peers. This statewide survey, based on experience, reputation and legal skills, is conducted by asking all 52,670 practicing Illinois lawyers who they would recommend if family or friends needed legal counsel. This distinction is earned by fewer than 5% of all lawyers licensed in the state. He has been a Leading Lawyer 2004-2013. Steve has also been chosen as an Illinois Superlawyer for 2005-2014. He is also AV Peer Rated by Martindale Hubbell and Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers.
Steve has also been an active member of his community. He has participated in numerous charity bike rides for the American Diabetes Association, American Lung Association, MS Society, Chicago Cancer Society, Leukemia/Lymphoma Society and four Pallotta rides for AIDS charities. In 2004-2007, he was the Event Chairman for the ADA Tour de Cure and in 2004-2013, was a member of the ADA Income Development Committee. Steve’s interest has spawned the firm participation as Team Mac & Fries in 2003 though the present. Steve is also a regular participant of the Hustle up the Hancock stair climb which is a fundraiser for the Respiratory Health Association of Metropolitan Chicago.
With Steve’s background, knowledge and experience, he will be an excellent Arbitrator for Illinois. We wish him well in this position.