Patrick P. Clyder
Swanson, Martin & Bell LLP
Products liability
40 Under Class – 2019

A command of the issues. That’s what Patrick Clyder’s peers often cite when describing just why this young attorney has risen so quickly among the ranks of Chicago’s products liability specialists.

Clyder has the ability to break down even the most complex of cases and translate their details into stories that jurors can easily understand. This talent has helped Clyder earn a string of successful decisions and settlements for his clients.

It also explains how Clyder has built such an impressive and loyal client base at the young age of 37.

“Patrick has a superior command of the technical issues that often determine outcomes in products liability cases,” said Eliot Turner with the Houston office of Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP. “My personal experience litigating with Patrick showed him to be an incredibly talented attorney and valuable member of our team.”

It is work like this that has made his peers taken notice. For example, retired judge William E. Gomolinski, whom Clyder has appeared before while on the bench and as mediator, said “Patrick is thorough in his analysis and prepared. He does not prepare cases to settle. He is not afraid and positions cases to give his clients options that suit their risk tolerance. For example, he brought a motion for summary judgment in an overhead crane case. He revisited the motion before my predecessor judge once he deposed plaintiff’s expert, and he was prepared to try the case only to have plaintiff take a voluntary dismissal on the eve of trial and after the last remaining co-defendant settled.”

Sheila P. Hiestand of the Kentucky firm McCoy, Hiestand & Smith, PLC opposed Clyder on a tough case. She said “I must say it is not easy to praise an opponent when you have been beaten, but Patrick’s work was outstanding, and I must admit his arguments were well written and reasoned. Hiestand continued, “He is easily one of the best and most thorough defense lawyers I have had the pleasure litigating against.”

Clyder has made an impression at his firm, too, where he leads the products liability practice group. Timothy Nickels, a partner at Clyder’s firm of Swanson, Martin & Bell, said that this skilled attorney has developed an expertise in representing the manufacturers of products involved in litigation. Clyder appears in court regularly and has a knack for developing and executing the sound legal strategies needed to earn positive outcomes for his clients.

Nickels said that the firm’s other attorneys, even those who don’t regularly work with Clyder, will seek out Clyder’s counsel and advice when crafting their own legal strategies.

Clyder isn’t shy about sharing this expertise. He serves as the co-chair of his firm’s Education and Boot Camp Committee and runs a formal training program for Swanson’s younger attorneys. Outside of his firm, Clyder is active in the Defense Research Institute, and has authored the institute’s Seventh Circuit Court Liability Case Law Update on several occasions. He currently serves as the vice president of the institute’s Hand and Power Tools Specialized Litigation Group.

“Patrick is the kind of person any organization would love to have,” Nickels said.

Chicago attorney John Cushing said that Clyder doesn’t wilt under pressure. Clyder has faced several of the country’s most talented trial attorneys and has still delivered positive results to his clients, Cushing said.

“Patrick is relentless while still being highly professional,” Cushing said. “He has shown an ability to face strong legal arguments and bring to light facts that support his position in an authoritative and confident way, persuading courts to consider his clients’ interests and not just sympathize with the victims.”