Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg LLP at a Glance


  • “Early substantive responsibility”
  • “Laid back atmosphere”
  • “The firm culture and working environment are great”


  • “Compensation lags the market and is totally black box”
  • “Little to no organized associate training”
  • “Long hours”

About Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg LLP

Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg is a three-office Chi-town-headquartered firm with sophisticated practices in bankruptcy, compensation and employment, corporate and securities, financial institutions, intellectual property, litigation, motor vehicle, real estate, and tax and business planning. Choosing a flexible and modern approach with a legal team of more than 100 attorneys, the firm's clients represent some of the most internationally renowned businesses and high value cases over a wide range of industries, from fashion, luxury goods, and retailing to manufacturing, wine and spirits, energy, and numerous other well-known U.S. and international entities.

Distinctly Different

In 1984, the founding vision of Barack Ferrazzano was to create a new model that departed from the standard "mega-firm" approaches and, instead, focused on delivering efficient, team-oriented services of the highest quality. The founding partners-two highly respected law professors at Northwestern University and two former members of a prominent Chicago firm-were soon joined by like-minded colleagues also seeking an alternative to the large law firm environment. The firm's efficient structure and staffing philosophy allows them to build skillful teams designed to bring the strongest talent possible to every challenge.

Leading Litigators and Tough Transactional Attorneys

The Litigation Group trial lawyers have been selected by some of the world's most prominent companies for representation in their most significant lawsuits in state and federal courts throughout the United States, handling a variety of cases, including disputes concerning: contracts; motor vehicle franchises; trade secrets; licensing disputes; consumer class actions; real estate; professional liability; civil RICO and conspiracy actions; director and officer matters; negligence and product liability; bankruptcy and creditors' rights; securities and derivative securities; and bank regulatory and other financial disputes.

Barack Ferrazzano also houses internationally renowned transactional practices, handling large-scale mergers and acquisitions for companies in finance as well as in industries such as luxury goods, retailing, manufacturing, wine and spirits and energy. S&P Global Market Intelligence has ranked Barack Ferrazzano one of the top firms in the U.S.-and the top in the Midwest for the last decade-in bank and thrift M&A transactions. The firm's real estate practice is consistently top ranked by U.S. News Best Lawyers / Law Firms and Chambers USA. In addition, Barack Ferrazzano's intellectual property practice group assists fashion and luxury brands and other U.S. and international clients with trademark clearance and counseling, copyright services and IP-related litigation.

A Sum of its Parts

Barack Ferrazzano selects attorneys from the most renowned law firms and top law schools. A number of attorneys write and speak on various legal, political and social topics for industry conferences and education programs, both in the U.S. and abroad. Individual attorneys are recognized in their respective practices and industries and hold leadership positions in professional organizations. Firm attorneys include several adjunct professors and instructors of courses at law and business universities, chairs of industry associations and committees, non-profit boards of directors, a major contributor to the revision of the Illinois Business Corporation Act, and several diversity and community outreach organization leaders.

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Barack Ferrazzano Kirschbaum & Nagelberg LLP

200 West Madison Street
Suite 3900
Chicago, IL 60606
Phone: (312) 984-3100


  • Employer Type: Private
  • Managing Partner: Howard J. Kirschbaum
  • Recruiting Chair: Dan R. Fine
  • Total No. Attorneys 2018: 126

  • Base Salary
    1st year: $190,000
    Summer Associate: $3,653/week

  • Summer Associate Offers
    out of 1 (2017)

  • Major Departments & Practices

    Bankruptcy & Creditor Rights • Compensation & Employment • Corporate & Securities • Cybersecurity, Privacy & Technology • Environmental • Fashion, Luxury & Retail • Financial Institutions • Intellectual Property • Litigation • Motor Vehicle • Real Estate • Tax & Business Planning • White Collar Defense & Regulatory Enforcement

Major Office Locations

  • Chicago, IL (HQ) • Minneapolis, MN • Austin, TX