Bradford S. Purcell


Chicago, IL | Chicago, IL
C 312.282.2178


B.A., Valparaiso University, summa cum laude 1984

J.D., University of Notre Dame Law School, 1987

Interdisciplinary Teams

Products Liability



Brad Purcell is a Partner at Freeman Mathis & Gary's Chicago office. Over his 35 year career as a trial attorney, Brad Purcell has defended individuals, public entities, and private companies of all types in civil litigation during all phases of the litigation process, developing defense strategies during the claims stage, guiding clients through the discovery process and, most importantly, defending clients all the way to verdict, if necessary. He has gone to verdict as lead trial counsel in federal court and state courts in Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan in cases involving wrongful death, traumatic brain injury, amputation, and catastrophic injuries. Since November 2011 alone, he went to verdict 10 times in cases that plaintiffs requested an aggregate of over $128,350,000 in damages, achieving a defense verdict in all but two of the trials contesting liability.

Bar Admissions


U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (Trial Bar)

United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois

Publications & Engagements
  • Handling Premises Liability Claims Regardless of Jurisdiction, Liability Insurance Research Bureau, 1995
  • The Science of Settlement, Liability Insurance Research Bureau, 1996
  • Contributing author to: Liability Claim Practices, § 8.34-8.38 (Insurance Institute of America 2001)
  • Liability for Criminal Acts of Third Parties: Targets, Liability Theories and Defenses, 2009
  • Construction Accident Litigation, 2012
Representative Cases & Clients

Lead counsel for the trucking company targeted in the March 15, 1999, Amtrak derailment resulting in eleven deaths and over 85 separate personal injury lawsuits.

Lead counsel for a security agency sued as a result of the February 5, 2001, shooting at a manufacturing plant, leaving 5 dead and several wounded and resulting in a summary judgment granted on behalf of security agency and upheld on appeal. Aidroos v. Vance Uniformed Protection Services, Inc., 386 Ill.App.3d 167 (1st Dist. 2008).

Lead counsel for the trucking company involved in a triple fatality collision in which Plaintiffs requested $25 million at the 2012 trial. The jury returned a verdict in favor of the defense which DRI featured in its “The Voice” publication.

Lead counsel for a garage door manufacturer in a 10 day product liability trial in 2013 in which Plaintiff asked for $2.6 million. The jury returned a defense verdict, which was featured in the DRI “The Voice” publication.

Appointed lead counsel one month before trial to defend a construction company sued in a multi-party 2018 wrongful death action arising out of a crane accident. After a 3-week trial in which liability had been admitted on behalf of the construction company, Plaintiff requested over $90 million. The jury returned an award of $8.5 million against the construction company whose last settlement offer of $10 million was rejected.


· Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel

· Chicago Bar Association


Awards and Recognition

AV-Rated® by Martindale-Hubbell

PLRB/LIRB Claims Conference – Outstanding Presentations Award 2006

Brad Purcell was also featured in the May 1994 issue of Claims Magazine in connection with his work in the field of premises liability law and on “CBS Good Morning” with respect to the effectiveness of surveillance in litigation.

Classes/Seminars Taught

Beginning in 1994, Brad Purcell has been lead presenter in over 50 separate seminars in 17 different states addressing national audiences of attorneys, insurance company representatives, and businesses on a variety of topics including Handling Premises Liability Claims and Litigation; The Science of Settlement; Analyzing Construction Accident Litigation; Critical Safety Documents in Litigation; Construction Defect Claims; Liability for Criminal Acts of Third Parties and Terrorism; Authentication of Video Evidence at Trial; and Challenging the Award of Attorney Fees in §1983 Actions.