AV Peer Review Rated

Paul V. Esposito


Super Lawyers® 2016

2014 Top Rated Lawyer in Appellate Law

2014 Chicago's Top Rated Lawyers

Paul V. Esposito joined Clausen Miller P.C. in 1999 and brings to our clients over 35 years of experience in appellate and trial courts throughout the nation.

Mr. Esposito has been the primary handling attorney in appeals brought in the United States Supreme Court, the United States Courts of Appeals for the Third, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth and Tenth Circuits, and supreme and appellate courts in numerous states. Those appeals have covered a wide range of federal and state  issues including constitutional, procedural, personal injury, transportation, employment, insurance coverage, and general commercial law.  Among his recent accomplishments, Mr. Esposito was successful in obtaining the reversal of a multi-million dollar punitive damages award.

Mr. Esposito has also actively monitored many trials nationwide to assist trial counsel in developing trial court arguments and preserving issues for appellate review. His work includes the preparation of motions in limine, jury instructions, and motions for judgment as a matter of law.  Mr. Esposito’s efforts have helped to secure defense verdicts in multi-million dollar cases against a pharmacy for an alleged failure to warn about prescription medicine and against a manufacturer of exercise equipment for an allegedly defective design.

Mr. Esposito is a member of the Appellate Lawyers Association of Illinois. He has served as a director of the Association and as a co-editor-in-chief of its Appellate Law Review.

Mr. Esposito has served as an appellate advocacy instructor for law students and lawyers. He has written several articles on the subject of appellate practice.

He is also a volunteer in the appellate mediation program established by the Appellate Court of Illinois, First, Judicial District.

Mr. Esposito has an  AV® Preeminent™ rating with Martindale-Hubbell indicating the highest ranking in legal ability and ethical standards as determined by his peers in the legal community.

Mr. Esposito began his career in the civil appeals division of the Illinois Attorney General's Office. In 1978, he began his work with Lewis, Overbeck & Furman in Chicago, Illinois, where  handled the firm's employment, transportation and commercial litigation at the trial and appellate levels.  He is a 1975 graduate of Loyola University of Chicago School of Law and a 1972 graduate of Saint Norbert College.

A representative sample of Mr. Esposito's cases handled on appeal includes:

Quern v. Mandley, 436 U.S. 425 (1978) (construing the validity of Illinois emergency aid regulations);
United States v. Hasting, 461 U.S. 499 (1983) (delineating the supervisory power of the federal courts of appeals);
Baltimore & O.C.T.R.R. v. Wisconsin Central, Ltd., 154 F.3d 404 (7th Cir. 1998) (enforcement of arbitration award for railroad switching charges);
Dean v. Sullivan, 118 F.3d 1170 (7th Cir. 1997) (proper constitution of an arbitration panel);
Sullivan v. Gilchrist, 87 F.3d 867 (7th Cir. 1996) (notice procedures in arbitration cases);
Reinsurance Company of America, Inc. v. Administratia Asigurarilor de Stat, 902 F.2d 1275 (7th Cir. 1990) (procedural question regarding grounds for vacating judgments);
Springfield-Sangamon County Regional Planning Comm'n v. Fair Employment Practices Comm'n, 71 Ill. 2d 61, 373 N.E.2d 1307 (1978) (timeliness of discrimination charge);
Village of Evergreen Park v. Commonwealth Edison Co., 296 Ill. App. 3d 810, 695 N.E.2d 1339 (1998) (construction of Public Utilities Act);
National American Insurance Co. v. Indiana Lumberman's Insurance Co., (7th Cir. 2000) (suretyship bond);
National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, PA v. Admiral Insurance Co., (5th Cir. 2000) (interpretation of additional insured provisions of commercial general liability policy);
Susan Waken Doll Co. v. Ashton Drake Galleries, 272 F.3d 441 (7th Cir. 2001) (copyright infringement).
Lexington Insurance Co. v. Lindahl Construction & Engineering, Inc., 47 P. 3d 1081 (Alaska 2002) (fire subrogation);
Ravotti v. Sunderland, (3d Cir. 2004) (construction accident);
Acorn Window Systems, Inc., v. Detroit Edison Co., (Mich. App. 2004) (subrogation);
Velarde v Illinois Central R.R., 354 Ill. App. 3d 523, 820 N.E.2d 37 (1st Dist. 2004) (day-in-the-life videos);
Foust v. McFarland, 698 N.W. 2d 24 (Minn. App. 2005) (motor vehicle accident);
Westray v. Wright, 835 834 N.E.2d 173 (Ind. Ct. App. 2005) (punitive damages);
Gregory & Appel Insurance Agency v. Philadelphia Indemnity Insurance Co., 835 N.E.2d 1053 (Ind. Ct. App. 2005) (mitigation of damages);
Mann v. Producer's Chemical Co., 356 Ill. App. 3d 967, 827 N.E.2d 883 (2005) (motor vehicle accident);
Ahmed v. Pickwick Place Owners' Assn., 385 Ill. App. 3d 874, 896 N.E.2d 854 (1st Dist. 2008)(premises liability/wrongful death);
Herman v. Brunswick Corp., (Ill. App. 2008) (product liability);
Capitol Group, Inc. v. Charles L. Crane Agency, (Ill. App. 2008) (insurance broker liability);
Ready v. United/Goedecke Services Co., 232 Ill. 2d 369, 905 N.E.2d 725 (2008) (construction of joint-and-several liability statute);
Faust v. Albertson, 167 Wn. 2d 531, 222 P.3d 1208 (2009) (common law dram shop action);
Singh v. Edwards Lifesciences, 151 Wa. App. 137, 210 P.3d 337 (2009) (conflicts of law);
Stoneridge Homeowners Association v. Saddleback Homeowners Association, 2009 WL 3824860 (Cal. App. 1st Dist. 2009)  (private nuisance);
Corral v. Mervis Industries, Inc., (Ill. App. 2010) (workplace accident);
Ready v. United/Goedecke Services Co., 238 Ill. 2d 582, 939 N.E.2d 417 (2010) (upholding sole proximate cause defense);
Phillips v. Erhart, 151 Idaho 100, 254 P.3d 1 (2011) (premises liability defense);
Cushing v. Greyhound Lines, Inc., 2012 IL App (1st) 100768 (statutory interpretation of Probate Act);
Lake Road Trust Ltd. v. ABB Powertech (Pty) Ltd., 136 Conn. App. 671, 51 A.3d 1109 (2012) (discovery sanctions).

A representative sample of employment cases handled by Mr. Esposito includes:

Hantel v. Lutheran General Hospital, Case No. 95 L 1074 ( Ill. Cir. Ct. Cook County) (suit under Illinois Right of Conscience Act and the Abortion Performance Refusal Act);
Hill v. General Electric Supply Company, Case No. 1989 CA 0262, Illinois Human Rights Commission (age discrimination claim under Illinois Human Rights Act);
Abrahamson v. Master Molded Products Corporation, Case No. 1993 CF 3085, Illinois Human Rights Commission (defense of national origin discrimination claim under Illinois Human Rights Act);
Karich v. Floral Network, Inc., Case No. 1994 CF 0034, Illinois Human Rights Commission (handicap discrimination claim under Illinois Human Rights Act);
National Surety Corp. v. Ranger insurance Co. (7th Cir. 2001) (interpretation of "other insurance" claims);
Edward Hines Lumber Co. v. U.S. Fire Insurance Co., (Ill. App. 2002) (interpretation of replacement cost provision of fire policy).


  • J.D. Loyola University, Chicago School of Law, 1975
  • B.A. Saint Norbert College, 1972

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois

Court Admissions

  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 1975
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois, 1994
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, 2003
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, 1999
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, 2000
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, 1975
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, 2000
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, 2011
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin, 1985
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1978

Organization Affiliations

  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Appellate Lawyers Association of Illinois

View this attorney's Reported Decisions, Verdicts and Judgments.