Kevin P. Durkin

Kevin P. Durkin

Attorney Profile

Top Rated Personal Injury Attorney in Chicago, IL

Clifford Law Offices PC
 | 120 North LaSalle Street, 31st Floor
Chicago, IL 60602
Phone: 312-899-9090
Fax: 312-251-1160
Selected to Super Lawyers: 2005 - 2020
Licensed Since: 1980
Practice Areas:
  • Personal Injury - General: Plaintiff (50%),
  • Aviation and Aerospace (30%),
  • Personal Injury - Products: Plaintiff (20%)
Attorney Profile

Kevin P. Durkin is a partner at Clifford Law Offices. Over a career that spans more than 35 years, Mr. Durkin has successfully represented clients in many practice areas, including aviation accident litigation and transportation liability, truck litigation, railroad litigation, automobile litigation, premises liability and negligent security, and medical malpractice. 

Mr. Durkin has been named a top-tier attorney by U.S. News-Best Lawyers in the areas of personal injury litigation, aviation law and product liability since 2011. He was named the Lawyer of the Year in 2017 in the area of Plaintiffs' Product Liability Litigation. These accolades are based on peer reviews and his legal ability, professionalism and integrity. He has also been named an Illinois Super Lawyer and a Leading Lawyer since 2003, its inception in the state.

After he graduated from DePaul University College of Law, Mr. Durkin served as an Assistant State's Attorney in the Cook County State's Attorney's Office in Chicago for eight years from 1980-1988. Since then, he has focused on civil litigation at Clifford Law Offices. 

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About Kevin Durkin

Admitted: 1980, Illinois

Professional Webpage: http://cliffordlaw.com/attorneys/kevin-p-durkin/

Honors/Awards:

  • Best Lawyers in the United States, 2019, Best Lawyers in the United States, 2019
  • Martindale-Hubbell, A.V. Peer Rated for Highest Level of Professional Excellence, 2019, Peer Rated Highest Level of Professional Excellence, Martindale-Hubbell, 2019
  • Leading Lawyers, 2018, Leading Lawyers, 2018
  • Named "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers, Personal Injury Litigation - Plaintiffs, Chicago, 2018., "Lawyer of the Year", Best Lawyers, 2018
  • Best Lawyers in America, 2015-2018, Best Lawyers in America, Best Lawyers, 2018
  • Super Lawyers, 2005-2017., Super Lawyers, Super Lawyers, 2017
  • Named "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers, Product Liability Litigation - Plaintiffs, Chicago, 2017., "Lawyer of the Year", Best Lawyers, 2017
  • 2015 Trial Lawyer Excellence Award, presented by the Jury Verdict Reporter, Trial Lawyer Excellence Award, 2015
  • 2012 Trial Excellence Award by the L Bulletin Publishing Company., Trial Excellence Award, L Bulletin Publishing Company, 2012
  • Named, "Top Tier Attorney in Personal Injury Litigation, Aviation Litigation, and Product Liability Litigation" by U.S. News-Best Lawyers since 2011., "Top Tier Attorney in Personal Injury Litigation, Aviation Litigation, and Product Liability Litigation", U.S. News-Best Lawyers, 2011

Special Licenses/Certifications:

  • National Institute of Trial Advocacy Certified Instructor, 1989., 1989

Bar/Professional Activity:

  • American Bar Association (ABA) Section of Litigation, 1992-Present; Product Liability Litigation Committee, 2019
  • American Bar Association (ABA), Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (1992-Present); Aviation and Space Law Committee, Vice Chair, 2005-Present, 2019
  • American Bar Association (ABA), Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (1992-Present); Commercial Transportation Litigation, 2019
  • American Bar Association (ABA), Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (1992-Present); Products General Liability and Consumer Law, 2019
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA); Legislative Committee,1993-Present, 2019
  • Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA); Civil Practice & Procedure Committee, 1989-Present, 2019
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA); Board of Managers, 2001-Present, 2019
  • Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA); Tort Law Committee, 1989-Present, 2019
  • American Association for Justice (AAJ) Aviation Law Section 1996-Present, 2019
  • American Association for Justice (AAJ); Products Liability Section 1999-Present, 2019
  • American Association for Justice (AAJ); Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway and Premises Liability Section, 1999-Present, 2019
  • American Association for Justice (AAJ); Railroad Law Section, 1999-Present, 2019
  • American Association for Justice (AAJ); Federal Tort Liability and Military Advocacy Section, 1999-Present, 2019
  • American Association for Justice (AAJ); Aviation Legislation Task Force, 2008-Present, 2019
  • American Bar Association (ABA), Judicial Intern Opportunity Program; Regional Chair, 2011-2014, 2014
  • DePaul University College of Law Center for Public Interest Advisory Board, 2008-2010, 2010
  • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation (1992-Present); Litigation Institute Training Task Force, 2006-2009, 2009
  • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), President, 2006-2007., 2007
  • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation (1992-Present); Mass Torts Litigation Committee, Co-Chair, 2004-2006, 2006
  • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), First Vice President, 2005-2006., 2006
  • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Second Vice President, 2004-2005., 2005
  • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation (1992-Present); Aviation Litigation Committee, Co-Chair, 2000-2004, 2004
  • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Treasurer, 2002-2004., 2004
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA); Board of Advocates, 1993-2001, 2001
  • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Chairman, Appellate Review Committee, 2001., 2001
  • Chicago Bar Association (CBA) Board of Managers, 1998-2000., 2000

Pro bono/Community Service:

  • Mr. Durkin gives back to the community in many ways including serving on the Board of Chicago Police Memorial Foundation, which helps families of fallen and injured Chicago police officers. 

Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, "The Value of Focus Groups," March 28, 2015., "The Value of Focus Groups", Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 2015
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, "Ethics of Client Communications," May 2, 2014., "Ethics of Client Communications", Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 2014
  • American Bar Association, "Improper Statements and Conduct in Opening and Closing Arguments," April 25, 2013., "Improper Statements and Conduct in Opening and Closing Arguments", American Bar Association, 2013
  • American Bar Association, Section of Litigation, "Disaster in the Alps? Fight Over Forum," June 3, 2010., "Disaster in the Alps? Fight Over Forum", American Bar Association, 2010
  • American Bar Association, Annual Meeting, "Objections," July 30, 2009., "Objections", American Bar Association, 2009
  • Law Bulletin Publishing Company, "Litigation Skills III Conference," April 23, 2009., "Litigation Skills III Conference", 2009
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, "Transportation Torts, Planes," February 16, 2009., "Transportation Torts, Planes", Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 2009
  • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, Update and Review Seminar, "Fault Allocation Under Section 2-1117/Excluding Settling Defendants From Verdict Form," October 13, 2008., "Fault Allocation Under Section 2-1117/Excluding Settling Defendants From Verdict Form", Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 2008

Verdicts/Settlements:

  • In February 2013, he obtained a $16 million jury verdict in Carroll County on behalf of the families of a fourteen-year-old and ninteen-year-old who were killed when entrapped in a grain bin, a record wrongful death verdict for a minor in Illinois outside of Cook County. The highest recorded verdict in that county previously was under $250,000., 2013
  • In May 2012, he was part of the trial team that obtained a $112 million verdict for two men who were injured in a grain bin explosion at a ConAgra mill in southern Illinois. , 2012
  • Mr. Durkin represented several families in the February 12, 2009, tragedy involving the crash of a Colgan Air commuter aircraft near Buffalo, New York. , 2009
  • Mr. Durkin represented several families in the August 27, 2006, tragedy involving a Comair plane in Lexington, Kentucky. , 2006
  • Mr. Durkin represented the family of a six-year-old boy who was killed when a Southwest jetliner crashed into his family's car after skidding off the runway at Midway Airport in December 2005., 2005
  • Mr. Durkin tried the case of a mother and her two children who were involved in a devastating truck-car collision on Interstate 90 near Rockford in 1999. After a month-long trial in the Cook County Circuit Court, Mr. Durkin received a $38.3 million verdict on behalf of the family in March 2004. The verdict was the largest in the country in 2004 involving a motor vehicle crash and was featured as one of the Top 100 Verdicts in the National Law Review Journal in 2005., 2004
  • In 2003, Mr. Durkin was instrumental in settling a series of lawsuits stemming from the crash of Alaska Airlines 261. This crash killed 88 people when it plunged into the Pacific Ocean in January 2000. Served as Co-Chair of the Plaintiff's Executive Committee for the litigation, he helped to recover more than $40 million in settlements on behalf of seven families following three years of depositions., 2003
  • Mr. Durkin also tried a tragic automobile accident case in South Dakota on behalf of a man who suffered permanent brain damage. The case resulted in that state's largest personal injury verdict, $7.5 million. , 1998
  • Mr. Durkin served as Lead Plaintiff's Co-Counsel in federal court where a $110 million settlement was negotiated for a number of families in the American Airlines Flight crash in Roselawn, Indiana., 1994
  • Mr. Durkin represented several men who were severely burned in a power plant explosion in Hammond, Indiana, recovering multi-million dollar settlements on behalf of the injured workers. 
  • Mr. Durkin was co-lead counsel in the Amtrak crash that occurred in Bourbonnais, Illinois, killing 11 poeple and injuring hundreds more. 
  • Mr. Durkin led the plaintiffs in the litigation involving the tragic high-rise fire in the Cook County Administration Building that killed six people and injured sixteen others. This resulted in a $100 million settlement. 
  • Mr. Durkin obtained a $9 million verdict on behalf of a man who lost an arm and his spleen in a rail tragedy following a three-week trial in federal court in central Illinois. 
  • Mr. Durkin handled the highly publicized $10 million settlement on behalf of a suburban police officer who was struck by a speeding hearse that ran a red light while the officer was on routine patrol. It made headlines because of the so-called "black box" that was discovered in the hearse that recorded the speed and contradicted the driver's story to police. 
  • Mr. Durkin served as co-counsel in a highly publicized case of an internationally acclaimed violinist who was severely injured when a Chicago commuter train dragged her for more than 300 feet. After taking dozens of depositions and a pain-staking investigation for more than four years, the month-long trial resulted in a $35 million verdict. 
  • Mr. Durkin obtained a $14.2 million verdict on behalf of a Boy Scout who was permanently brain damaged following a car accident
  • Following a two-week trial, he and Bob Clifford obtained a $24 million verdict on behalf of a small boy hit by a speeding CTA bus in a school zone.

Other Outstanding Achievements:

  • In 2010, Mr. Durkin also was inducted as a Fellow in the International Academy of Trial Lawyers. 2010-Present, 2019
  • In 2009, Mr. Durkin was elected a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers as well as being named to the Irish Legal 100, an honor that recognizes the top lawyers of Irish descent throughout the country. , 2009
  • In 2007, Mr. Durkin was bestowed the "Outstanding Contributions to the Legal Profession Award" by the International Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity (PAD) for his tireless work in promoting the legal profession in Chicago and in recognition for his public service to the people of Illinois. , 2007

Educational Background:

  • DePaul University College of Law, Chicago, Illinois Juris Doctor, 1980
  • University of Illinois B.S., Bachelor of Science Major: Accountancy, 1977
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Office Location for Kevin P. Durkin

120 North LaSalle Street
31st Floor
Chicago, IL 60602

Kevin P. Durkin:

Last Updated: 4/11/2019

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