Megan Poetzel is a co-chair of the Complex Commercial Litigation Practice Group at Jenner & Block LLP. She is a first-chair trial lawyer and litigator, representing businesses in a variety of disputes arising from corporate transactions and consumer relationships. Megan works with clients in numerous industries, including real estate, technology, commercial and consumer lending, and financial services, to resolve government investigations and inquiries and burgeoning private disputes prior to litigation, as well as to bring and defend claims in courts and arbitration proceedings.
Megan is currently on the Jenner & Block team that represents many of Chicago’s most iconic and well-known restaurants in a lawsuit against their insurance carriers for refusing to cover losses resulting from executive orders shutting down and restricting restaurants during the coronavirus pandemic. She also represents several clients in connection with class action lawsuits or government inquiries concerning in person, telephone and online interactions with consumers.
Megan also led a team representing a mortgage industry client in more than a dozen cases and several government investigations arising from the 2008 financial crisis relating to mortgage-backed securitization trusts. These cases involved litigation in federal and state courts in New York, California, Minnesota and Connecticut, including a three-week trial Megan first-chaired in which the plaintiff sought nearly $1 billion. Following closing arguments, that matter was resolved for a small fraction of claimed amount.
Megan maintains an active pro bono practice. She has assisted five clients in asylum proceedings, helping each take the legal steps needed to start a new life in the United States. Megan also argued unsettled Constitutional issues in a habeas corpus case before the Seventh Circuit and represented of an individual who was charged with capital murder. Her successful argument at the Illinois Appellate Court resulted in a reversal of conviction and remand for a new trial.
A leader both in the courtroom and within the firm, Megan serves on Jenner & Block’s Management Committee and is co-chair of the firm’s Women’s Forum. She mentors and sponsors junior lawyers by providing opportunities for professional development and sharing career insights that she gained from her mentors and her years of practice as a working mother of two children.
Outside the firm, Megan continues her commitment to pro bono and community service as co-chair of the Board of Legal Aid Chicago, which provides free legal services to people living in poverty in metropolitan Chicago and makes equal justice a reality for the most vulnerable members of the community.
In 2018, Megan was recognized by Crain’s Chicago Business as one of Chicago’s Notable Women Lawyers. She received her J.D. with high honors from IIT Chicago- Kent College of Law, Illinois Institute of Technology, and her Bachelor of Science undergraduate degree in chemistry, with honors, from the University of Michigan.