Antony S. Burt

A commercial litigator for more than 35 years, Tony handles highly visible and complex lawsuits, including those against a former Illinois governor, a US congressman, a city mayor, and the son of a sitting US president.
Tony Burt

Tony’s insurance coverage claims are equally recognizable and have involved a then US President and reinsurance obligations arising out of the destruction of the World Trade Center.

Tony has tried and arbitrated cases throughout the country and represents financial institutions and government agencies in complex commercial disputes, lender liability, fidelity bonds and closing protection letter claims. While working on these cases, he focuses on solving his client’s problems, not making a name for himself in the courtroom. Often that means avoiding or ending litigation through a creative resolution to achieve a client’s goals efficiently.

Tony’s extensive experience also includes civil investigations to identify and recover losses on fraud, employee dishonesty or misconduct, and professional malpractice. His main objective in these situations is to find a quick and cost-effective resolution that is most conducive to a company’s business operations. He frequently coordinates with criminal enforcement and regulatory agencies to maximize the recovery for companies victimized by fraud.

Tony also has substantial experience with reinsurance arbitration and litigation on behalf of both reinsurers and cedants.

Client Work

  • Achieved a complete victory for a logistics company in defending a $23 million breach of contract claim after a two-week arbitration. Verdict was based on application of force majeure clause during Covid-19 business interruption.

  • Obtained jury verdict against Board of Directors of failed financial institution for breach of fiduciary duty after two-week trial.
  • Successfully obtained dismissal with prejudice of shareholder suit for violation of federal securities law challenging $1.1 billion acquisition.
  • Successfully represented international technology company in indemnification claim involving approximately $100 million arising out of acquisition of multi-billion corporation.
  • Handled a two-week arbitration in a contract dispute over an assistance agreement, recovering more than $43 million in the face of a $50 million counterclaim.
  • Successfully lifted an injunction on the sale of an $85 million loan secured by a hotel property, allowing the sale to proceed that day.
  • Acted as lead trial counsel in Houston General Insurance Co. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s London, U.S. Dist. LEXIS 19516 (S.D.N.Y. 2003), in which the court affirmed the entry of a $39 million arbitration award.
  • Led a special investigation for the Litigation Committee of the Board of Directors of State Farm Insurance Company into the company’s handling of the insurance claim by the then­-President of the United States.
  • Tried closing protection letter lawsuit establishing borrower’s fraudulent conduct, recovering $2.3 million. Trial verdict was affirmed by Sixth Circuit. (Case No. 2:09-cv-14891-MOB-VMM)
  • Defeated three lender liability cases in different jurisdictions brought by borrower or related entities and recovered on mortgage from borrower.
  • Acted as chief outside counsel for the RTC on all investigations into possible financial fraud at closed savings and loans during RTC’s final year. In addition, conducted special investigations for the RTC relating to the failure of such high­-profile financial institutions as Franklin Savings and Loan Association of Overland Park, Kansas, and Centrust Savings of Florida.
  • Served as a member of the RTC’s Phoenix SWAT team handling litigation, investigations and asset disposition issues. During this period, he regularly lectured RTC attorneys and investigators on conducting investigations and pursuing professional liability claims.
  • Assisted in many of the most important cases involving legal challenges to the appointment of federal receivers and special receivership powers, including two cases that were decided by the US Supreme Court.

Boards, Memberships & Certifications

  • American Bar Association, Section of Litigation, Tort Trial and Insurance Practice Section
  • Leadership of Greater Chicago, Fellow
  • The Albert C. Maule Urban Issues Forum
  • Duke Engage Advisory Board
  • Metropolitan Family Services Advisory Board – Evanston/Skokie Valley

Professional Activities

  • Adjunct Professor, Trial Advocacy — Northwestern University (1998 – 2019)

Publications, Presentations & Recognitions

  • The Best Lawyers in America, Best Lawyers (2013-2024)
  • Illinois Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters (2009, 2011-2021)
  • Illinois Leading Lawyer, Law Bulletin’s Illinois Leading Lawyers Network (2007-2021)
  • Litigation Star, Euromoney’s Benchmark Litigation (2012-2013, 2017-2018)
  • Chambers USA – Insurance: Dispute Resolution: Reinsurance, Illinois (2010-2013); Insurance: Reinsurance Litigation, Illinois (2006-2009)
  • Peer Reviewed AV® Preeminent™, Martindale-Hubbell (Since 1999)