Alan M. Kaplan

Principal, Schaumburg
Phone: 847.734.8811

Alan M. Kaplan of the Employment, Labor and Benefits group represents management in employment counseling, drafting, negotiations and litigation. He negotiates and drafts executive employment, confidentiality and non-competition agreements as well as employment policies and represents buyers and sellers in business transactions, conducting labor and employment due diligence. He counsels clients for compliance with federal and state laws and regulations, hiring of executives and employees having restrictive covenants, implementation of employment policies, wrongful terminations, wage and hour, union avoidance and occupational safety and health. He has extensive experience in managing union elections and de-certifications, negotiating union contracts, preventing and stopping illegal picketing, and defending unionized clients during union trust fund audits, union grievances and arbitration hearings. He also defends companies in employment discrimination and wrongful discharge cases in both federal and state courts. His clients include businesses in the machine tool, automotive, construction and service industries as well as professionals and executives who need counseling and assistance in drafting, negotiating and litigating employment and non-competition agreements.

Mr. Kaplan has been admitted to practice in Illinois, Kentucky and Ohio, the federal Circuit Courts of Appeals for the Seventh, Ninth and District of Columbia Circuits, and the U.S. District Courts for the Northern District of Illinois, the Eastern District of Tennessee and the Eastern District of Wisconsin. Prior to Mr. Kaplan's association with the firm, he served as a Hearing Officer and prosecuting attorney in the Chicago Regional Office of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). His government experience gives him unique insights and contacts when representing companies before federal, state and local agencies that regulate labor and employment laws, including the NLRB, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), state departments of human rights, the Occupational Safety Health and Administration (OSHA), and federal and state departments of labor.

Mr. Kaplan was selected as an Illinois Super Lawyer in 2015, marking six straight years receiving that honor, and he holds an AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell. A former Chair of the Labor and Employment Section Council of the Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA), he is currently a member of both the ISBA's Small Business Advice Section Councils and a member of the American Bar Association's Subcommittee on Practice and Procedure before the NLRB. He also serves as a member of the steering committee of the Labor Law Conference, co-sponsored by Chicago Region 13 of the NLRB and Chicago-Kent School of Law.

He conducts in-house supervisory training sessions on such topics as union avoidance, anti-harassment, employment discrimination, hiring, discipline, safety and how employers should comply with laws relating to ill or injured employees. He was selected to conduct union avoidance training programs for the supplier group of a major Japanese automotive manufacturer and has spoken before the Japan America Society of Kentucky and the Japanese Chamber of Commerce & Industry of Chicago and the Osaka, Japan Chamber of Commerce on labor and employment law issues.

Representative Matters

  • Defended and negotiated settlement on behalf of a computer graphics company in wrongful termination and non-competition agreement litigation, in the Illinois Cook County Circuit Court.

  • Obtained summary judgment against former employee alleging breach of oral employment agreement, promissory estoppel and wrongful termination in Wyoming Federal District Court.

  • Strategized and helped implement reductions-in-force for corporations, including those in Michigan, Illinois and Ohio.

  • Negotiated union contract with Teamsters Union for unit of warehouse workers in Wood Dale, Illinois as well as negotiated union contracts with Machinists, Auto Workers and other unions in the manufacturing, service and construction industries.

  • Advised regarding several anti-union/pro-company campaigns, including decertification of Teamsters Union for manufacturing company in Chicago, union losing vote unanimously.

  • Represented multi-national corporation in Americans With Disabilities Act case at Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Minnesota Department of Human Rights.

  • Represented manufacturing and construction companies during investigations, litigation and negotiation of settlements with OSHA and the U.S. Solicitor of Labor's Office regarding the liability of companies for workplace injuries.

  • Obtained partial summary judgment in Family & Medical Leave Act case in the Eastern District of Tennessee Federal Court for manufacturing company.

  • Represented public employer before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in a race discrimination case, which was dismissed because of lies on an employment application.

Practice Areas


  • DePaul University College of Law, J.D., 1980
  • Northwestern University, B.S.E., 1973 and M.A., 1975 in Educational Administration


  • Illinois
  • Kentucky
  • Ohio
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh, Ninth and District of Columbia Circuit

Professional Activities

  • American Bar Association's Subcommittee on Practice and Procedure Before the NLRB
  • Board of Directors, Chicago Kent School of Law Public Sector Labor Relations Conference
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Kentucky State Bar Association
  • Ohio State Bar Association
  • Section Council of the Labor and Employment Committee of the Illinois State Bar Association


  • Selected as a Super Lawyer, 2006, 2011-2017
  • Recognized as a Leading Lawyer, 2015-2017