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: 800-610-1894
Fax: 312-251-1160
Selected To Super Lawyers: 2005 - 2020
Licensed Since: 1980
Practice Areas:
  • Personal Injury - General: Plaintiff (40%),
  • Aviation and Aerospace (40%),
  • Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice: Plaintiff (10%),
  • Transportation/Maritime (10%)
    Attorney Profile

    Attorney Kevin P. Durkin is a partner with Clifford Law Offices PC in Chicago, Illinois. A top-ranked trial attorney with more than 35 years of total legal experience, Mr. Durkin provides exceptional representation and support to clients throughout Illinois and all across the country who suffered injury or loss as the result of any of the following:

    • Aviation and transportation accidents
    • Truck, railroad and automobile accidents
    • Unsafe property conditions, negligent security and other premises liability issues
    • Medical malpractice

    A veteran of more than 100 jury trials and many more personal injury and wrongful death cases, Mr. Durkin has recovered hundreds of millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for his plaintiff clients, including some of the largest verdicts and settlements ever awarded in Illinois. Most recently, he obtained a verdict of more than $22.75 million for the survivors of a man killed in an auto accident, and he helped secure a verdict of $112 million for two men severely injured in a grain bin explosion.

    Over the course of his legal career, Mr. Durkin has become a recognized authority on claims stemming from aviation accidents, and he has recovered numerous verdicts and settlements well in excess of a million dollars for victims and their families. He has also served as co-chair and vice chair of the American Bar Association’s Aviation and Space Law Committee and co-chair of its Mass Torts Litigation Committee.

    Honored for his outstanding professionalism and service, Mr. Durkin has earned consistent recognition from Best Lawyers in personal injury litigation, aviation law and product liability each year since 2011. He has also received the organization's Lawyer of the Year award in 2020, and he has earned a Leading Lawyer designation, as well as many other top rankings and endorsements from his peers. In 2007, the International Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity bestowed him with the Outstanding Contributions to the Legal Profession Award.

    A 1977 graduate of the University of Illinois, Mr. Durkin obtained his Juris Doctor from DePaul University College of Law in 1980. He also holds his certification as an instructor with the National Institute for Trial Advocacy. He is admitted to practice before the U.S. District Court for the Northern and Central Districts of Illinois, the Western District of Michigan and the Northern District of New York, as well as the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit.

    Mr. Durkin is an active member of numerous local, state and national professional legal organizations, and he has written extensively and conducted lectures and seminars across the nation on a variety of topics related to personal injury law, tort law, effective trial advocacy and other subjects.

    Best Lawyers® and The Best Lawyers in America© are registered trademarks of BL Rankings, LLC d/b/a Best Lawyers and Co., LLC. The names, logo, and database are protected under the trademark, copyright, and fair use laws of the United States of America. Any use of name, including in electronic form, must be made only by permission and under the guidelines of BL Rankings, LLC d/b/a Best Lawyers and Co., LLC.

     
    Practice Areas
    • 40%Personal Injury - General: Plaintiff
    • 40%Aviation and Aerospace
    • 10%Personal Injury - Medical Malpractice: Plaintiff
    • 10%Transportation/Maritime
    Focus Areas

    Trucking Accidents, Aviation Accidents - Plaintiff, Medical Malpractice, Transportation Law

    Selections

    Selected to Super Lawyers for 16 yearsbottom-image

    Super Lawyers: 2005 - 2020

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    Articles about Kevin P. Durkin appearing in Super Lawyers

    About Kevin Durkin

    Admitted: 1980, Illinois

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

    Honors/Awards:

    • Selected to Illinois Super Lawyers list, 2005 – 2020
    • Best Lawyers in the United States, 2019
    • Martindale-Hubbell, AV Peer Rated for Highest Level of Professional Excellence, 2019
    • Leading Lawyer, Law Bulletin Media, 2018 – Present
    • Named "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers, Personal Injury Litigation - Plaintiffs, Chicago, 2018, 2020
    • Best Lawyers in America, 2011-Present
    • Named "Lawyer of the Year" by Best Lawyers, Product Liability Litigation - Plaintiffs, Chicago, 2017
    • Trial Lawyer Excellence Award, presented by the Jury Verdict Reporter, 2015
    • Trial Excellence Award by the 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

    Special Licenses/Certifications:

    • National Institute of Trial Advocacy Certified Instructor, 1989

    Bar/Professional Activity:

    • Co-Chair of the Aviation Committee for the 75,000-member American Bar Association’s Section of Litigation
    • U.S. District Court Western District of Michigan, 2000
    • U.S. District Court Northern District of New York, 2006
    • U.S. District Court Central District of Illinois, 1993
    • U.S. Court of Appeals 7th Circuit, 1995
    • U.S. District Court Northern District of Illinois, 1980
    • Chicago Bar Association, Judicial Evaluation Committee, Chairman of Hearing Division (1995 – 1997)
    • Illinois, 1980
    • Chicago Bar Association, Judicial Evaluation Committee, General Chairman (1997 – 1998)
    • Chicago Bar Association, Judicial Evaluation Committee, Vice Chairman of Hearing Division (1994 – 1995)
    • Chicago Bar Association, Judicial Evaluation Committee, Vice Chairman of Investigation Division (1993 – 1994)
    • Chicago Bar Association, Judicial Evaluation Committee, Hearing Division Member, 1991-1993
    • Chicago Bar Association, Judicial Evaluation Committee, Investigation Division Member (1989 -1991)
    • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA)
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section, Aviation and Space Law Committee, Vice Chair, 2005-Present
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation, Product Liability Litigation Committee
    • Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA)
    • American Association for Justice
    • Chicago Bar Association (CBA)
    • American Bar Association (ABA)
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation, 1992-Present
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section (1992-Present)
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section, Commercial Transportation Litigation, 2019
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section, Products General Liability and Consumer Law, 2019
    • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA), Legislative Committee, 1993-Present
    • Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA), Civil Practice & Procedure Committee, 1989-Present
    • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA), Board of Managers, 2001-Present
    • Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA), Tort Law Committee, 1989-Present
    • American Association for Justice (AAJ), Aviation Law Section, 1996-Present
    • American Association for Justice (AAJ), Products Liability Section, 1999-Present
    • American Association for Justice (AAJ), Motor Vehicle Collision, Highway and Premises Liability Section, 1999-Present
    • American Association for Justice (AAJ), Railroad Law Section, 1999-Present
    • American Association for Justice (AAJ), Federal Tort Liability and Military Advocacy Section, 1999-Present
    • American Association for Justice (AAJ), Aviation Legislation Task Force, 2008-Present
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Judicial Intern Opportunity Program, Regional Chair, 2011-2014
    • DePaul University College of Law Center for Public Interest Advisory Board, 2008-2010
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation, Litigation Institute Training Task Force, 2006-2009
    • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), President, 2006-2007
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation, Mass Torts Litigation Committee, Co-Chair, 2004-2006
    • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), First Vice President, 2005-2006
    • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Second Vice President, 2004-2005
    • American Bar Association (ABA), Section of Litigation, Aviation Litigation Committee, Co-Chair, 2000-2004
    • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Treasurer, 2002-2004
    • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA), Board of Advocates, 1993-2001
    • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Chairman, Appellate Review Committee, 2001
    • Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Board of Managers, 1998-2000

    Pro bono/Community Service:

    • Center for Conflict Resolution, Board of Directors (2001 – 2005)
    • President of the DePaul University College of Law Center for Public Interest Advisory Board 2008 – 2010
    • 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. 
    • Chicago Bar Foundation, Board of Directors (2000 – 2008)
    • Aviation Law Institute, Advisory Board, DePaul University College of Law, 2014-Present

    Scholarly Lectures/Writings:

    • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, "The Value of Focus Groups," March 28, 2015
    • Adjunct Faculty, DePaul College of Law, Taught trial advocacy course and complex litigation course, 1988 – 1994
    • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, "Ethics of Client Communications," May 2, 2014
    • American Bar Association, "Improper Statements and Conduct in Opening and Closing Arguments," April 25, 2013
    • American Bar Association, Section of Litigation, "Disaster in the Alps? Fight Over Forum," June 3, 2010
    • American Bar Association, Annual Meeting, "Objections," July 30, 2009
    • Law Bulletin Publishing Company, "Litigation Skills III Conference," April 23, 2009
    • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, "Transportation Torts, Planes," February 16, 2009
    • Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, Update and Review Seminar, "Fault Allocation Under Section 2-1117/Excluding Settling Defendants From Verdict Form," October 13, 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 nineteen-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
    • 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
    • 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
    • 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
    • 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, 2004-2005
    • 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
    • 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 people 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-Present, Mr. Durkin also was inducted as a Fellow in the International Academy of Trial Lawyers
    • In 2009-Present, 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
    • 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

    Educational Background:

    • 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

    Phone: 800-610-1894

    Fax: 312-251-1160

    Kevin P. Durkin:

    Last Updated: 7/7/2020

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