J. Bryan Wood

Top rated Employment Litigation attorney in Chicago, Illinois

The Wood Law Office, LLC
J. Bryan Wood
The Wood Law Office, LLC

Practice Areas: Employment Litigation, Employment & Labor, Class Action & Mass Torts view more

Licensed in Illinois since: 1999

Education: University of Virginia School of Law

Selected to Super Lawyers: 2016 - 2024

The Wood Law Office, LLC

303 West Madison Street
Suite 2650
Chicago, IL 60606 Phone: 312-554-8600 Email: J. Bryan Wood Visit website


The founder of The Wood Law Office, LLC, J. Bryan Wood, has devoted his entire career to handling employment law cases. He represents employees throughout the Chicago, Illinois, area in matters involving issues such as wage and hour disputes, harassment, the Family and Medical Leave Act, and wrongful termination. On the other side, he advises select employers on compliance and defends them in litigation matters.

Mr. Wood has personal experience with wrongdoing in the workplace. In his first job at a grocery store, he was paid less than minimum wage and expected to run the meat grinder despite being underage. He promptly quit when he was refused a raise that would bring him up to minimum wage.  In college he helped write the first employee manual for his natural foods grocer employer.  And as an attorney for 20+ years he's helped  employees and employers handle employment law issues they face.

Mr. Wood is a member of The Chicago Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Law Section, the American Association for Justice, the Federal Bar Association, the National Employment Lawyers Association and its Illinois chapter, NELA-Illinois

Through his effective and assertive practice, Mr. Wood has recovered millions of dollars on behalf of clients. He also helps people secure favorable settlements without having to go to litigation.  And he has helped employers successfully avoid litigation through compliance advice or settlement negotiations and, when necessary, defended them.

He is admitted to practice before the U.S. District Courts for the Central, Northern and Southern District of Illinois as well as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit.

For his accomplishments, Mr. Wood has earned the highest peer rating possible of AV Preeminent* from Martindale-Hubbell.

Mr. Wood earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Virginia in 1996. He then graduated with a Juris Doctor in 1999 from the University of Virginia School of Law.

*AV®, AV Preeminent®, Martindale-Hubbell Distinguished and Martindale-Hubbell Notable are certification marks used under license in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell® is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Rating™ fall into two categories – legal ability and general ethical standards.

Practice areas

Employment Litigation: Plaintiff, Employment & Labor: Employee, Class Action/Mass Torts: Plaintiff, Employment & Labor: Employer, Employment Litigation: Defense

First Admitted: 1999, Illinois

Professional Webpage: http://www.jbryanwoodlaw.com/about/experience/

Bar/Professional Activity:
  • NELA-Illinois Board, Secretary, 2015-2017; Vice-President 2018-2019; Treasurer - 2020-Current
  • NELA-Illinois, Member, 2006-Present
  • Illinois State Bar Association, Labor & Employment Section, Member, 2007-Present
  • Chicago Bar Association, Labor & Employment Committee, Vice-Chair, 2012
  • American Association for Justice, Member, 2014-Present
  • Chicago Bar Association, Labor & Employment Committee, Co-Chair, 2011-2013
  • Federal Bar Association, Member, 2013-Present
  • United States Court of Appeals Seventh Circuit, 2013
  • United States Court of Appeals Sixth Circuit, 2001
  • United States District Courts C.D. Ill., 2002
  • United States District Courts S.D. Ill., 2000
  • United States District Courts N.D. Ill., 1999
  • Illinois, 1999
  • National Employment Lawyers Association, 2005-Present
  • NELA-Illinois, Board Member, 2008-Present
  • Chicago Bar Association, 2004-Present
  • Chicago Bar Association, Class Litigation Committee
  • American Bar Association, Member, since 2014
  • AV Preeminent Rating, Martindale Hubbell
Pro bono/Community Service:
  • National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, 2001-Present
  • Fellow, American Bar Association Foundation
  • Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights of Chicago, Inc., 2015-Present
  • American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), 2001-Present
Educational Background:
  • University of Virginia, B.A., Major: American Government, 1996
  • Malin v. Hospira et al. (7th Cir. 2014) - summary judgment reversed on appeal, 2014
  • Vega v. Chicago Park District (7th Cir. 2020) - Trial verdict upheld on appeal, 2020
Scholarly Lectures/Writings:
  • Feb 2020 - Annual Seventh Circuit Employment Law Conference (Speaker) - Speaker at Seventh Circuit conference on civilty and ethics, Speaker, Civility Now! Being Civil And Effective - What Ethics Can Teach Us About Civility, 2020
  • May 2019 - Spring Employment Law Seminar (Planner) - Coordinated planning of event, invited speakers, organized materials, etc., Conference Planner, Spring Employment Law Seminar, 2019
  • Feb. 2018 - Ethical Issues for Solos and Small Firms (Speaker) - Speaker regarding ethical issues for solos and small firms relating to engagement, joint representation, fee agreements and other issues, Speaker, Ethical Issues for Solos and Small Firms, NELA-Illinois, 2018
  • Dec. 2017 - Cook County & Chicago Paid Leave Ordinances (Speaker) - Panelist at CBA Committee meeting regarding Cook County and Chicago Paid Sick Leave Ordinances, compliance and enforcement, Speaker, Cook County & Chicago Paid Sick Leave Ordinances, 2017
  • Feb. 2017 - Written Advocacy - 2017 Annual NELA Seventh Circuit Conference (Speaker) Presenting with Chris Keleher (Keleher Appellate Law Group) regarding written advocacy for lawyers writing for busy judges, including digital readers, Speaker, Written Advocacy, 2017
  • Dec. 2015 - FRCP Amendments and Their Impact in Labor & Employment Law - Chicago Bar Association Labor & Employment Committee Meeting (Speaker)  Presented with Alex Vesselinovitch (Freeborn Peters) regarding the 2015 "Duke Rules Package" amending the federal rules of civil procedure and discussed implications for employment practitioners, 2015
  • Oct. 2015 - Impact Fund's Class Action Training Institute (Faculty) Participated with Jocelyn Larkin and Robert L. Schug (Impact Fund) and Dara Schur (Disability Rights California) as the only Chicago-based faculty of a 3-day, fact-pattern-based intensive training seminar for 18 relatively new class action practitioners, 2015
  • Oct. 2015 - Over Coming Our Unconscious Implicit Bias in Policing, Employment & Education -Northwestern Law School and Chicago Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law Symposium (Speaker) Spoke as a panelist with Tremaine Maebry (METRA) to over 200 audience members (lawyers and non-lawyers) about implicit bias and implications for employment practices and discrimination litigation, 2015
  • Feb. 2015 - Valuing Employment Cases: Plaintiff and Defense Perspectives - Fourteenth Annual Seventh Circuit NELA Conference (Co-Author with M. Megan O'Malley) - In conjunction with M. Megan O'Malley, surveyed management and employee advocates about case valuation at various stages of litigation based on common fact patterns and reported intra- and inter-group results and trends in hopes of increasing chance of resolving employment disputes, 2015
  • May 2014 - Employment Contracts: The Ones You Want And The Ones You Don't - Chicago Bar Association Labor & Employment Committee Seminar (Moderator), 2014
  • Aug. 2014 - FMLA Liability for Individuals The "Public" Debate-Illinois Employee Advocate, Vol. 3, No. 3 (Author), 2014
  • Dec. 2014 - CBA L&E seminar E-Discovery Issues In Employment Litigation: One Lawyer's Thoughts On Emerging Issues (Speaker), 2014
  • Nov. 2013 - Employment Law Update-2013 - Chicago Bar Association Labor & Employment Committee Seminar (Moderator), 2013
  • May 2013 - Legal Issues and Pitfalls in Hiring - Chicago Bar Association Labor & Employment Committee Seminar (Moderator), 2013
  • Feb. 2013 - Technology & The Law: The Ever-Evolving Ethical Landscape - Twelfth Annual Seventh Circuit NELA Conference (Moderator), 2013
  • Nov. 2012 - Labor and Employment Law A Year in a Review - Chicago Bar Association Labor & Employment Committee Seminar (Moderator), 2012
  • Oct. 2012 - Bias 2.0 What Every Employee Advocate Should Know-National Employment Lawyers Association Seminar (Speaker & Seminar Faculty Committee), 2012
  • June 2012 - IHRC Procedural Irregularities Exhausting Administrative Remedies And Pleading Exhaustion For Charges Filed With The EEOC In Light Of The2008 And 2011 IHRA Amendments-NELA-Illinois Meeting (Speaker)    , 2012
  • Mar. 2012 - Disparate Impact After Dukes - Impact Fund 10th Annual Class Action Conference (Speaker), 2012
  • Feb. 2012 - Impact Fund 10th Annual Class Action Conference (Author) Feb. 2012 - Post-Wal-Mart Disparate Impact Challenges To Delegated Discretion Or Subjective Decision-Making: Describing The "Practice" That Causes The Disparities - Impact, 2012

Office location for J. Bryan Wood

303 West Madison Street
Suite 2650
Chicago, IL 60606


9 Years Super Lawyers
  • Super Lawyers: 2016 - 2024

Attorney resources for J. Bryan Wood

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