Stefan is “masterful in his presentation to the court,” “a trusted advisor to C-suite and board members. ” - Chambers USA, 2023 (Client Quote)

Stefan Atkinson litigates a wide range of critical, complex litigation matters for clients in the United States and abroad, including securities, M&A and antitrust suits. He also regularly counsels companies and their directors on issues of corporate governance and litigation, often in connection with major strategic transactions. Stefan’s clients have included 3G Capital, Barnes & Noble, Constellation Brands, Grubhub, H.J. Heinz, Lee Enterprises, Mylan, Pitney Bowes, Qualcomm, Starwood Hotels, Stone Point Capital, Vitamin Shoppe, The Williams Companies and Xerox.

Stefan has been recognized as a leading lawyer by various legal ranking publications, including Chambers USA, Legal 500 and Benchmark Litigation, and his work has been featured in The American Lawyer’s “Litigator of the Week” series. In 2023, Stefan was named a BTI Client Service All-Star, the only attorney recognition relying solely on clients for feedback. Clients recognized Stefan for being their "go-to attorney for everything" and noted that he is “always available."

Stefan is Kirkland’s Firmwide litigation hiring partner.


Thought Leadership

Recent Publications

Contributed to “Securities Litigation,” Corporate Disputes Magazine, January–March, 2024

Making the Case That Hard Seltzer is Beer—or At Least Not ‘Not Beer,’” The Am Law Litigation Daily, March 29, 2023

“Different Federal Court Approaches to Scheme Liability,” New York Law Journal, January 6, 2023

“Getting the Deal Through: M&A Litigation 2022,” Lexology, April 2022 

“Securities Law and the Supremacy Clause,” Securities Regulation Daily, April 30, 2021 

"Delaware Supreme Court Approves Provision to Keep Federal Securities Claims in Federal Courts," Kirkland Alert, March 19, 2020

“Securities Litigation: Mapping A Strategy For Defending Against Fraud Claims,” (Panel Member) Corporate Disputes, December 12, 2019 

"Choose Wisely — Drafting Governing Law and Forum Selection Clauses," Kirkland M&A Update, April 8, 2019


Chambers USA

  • Securities Litigation, 2023


  • Securities Editorial Advisory Board, 2022 

The Legal 500 US

  • Securities Litigation, 2021–2023
  • General Commercial Litigation, 2020
  • M&A Litigation, 2019–2023

BTI Consulting

  • Client Service All-Star, 2023

Benchmark Litigation

  • Litigation Star, 2023–2024
  • Future Star, 2020–2022


Admissions & Qualifications

  • New York


  • University of Michigan Law SchoolJ.D.magna cum laude

    Henry M. Bates Memorial Scholarship (highest honor at graduation) 

    Managing Editor, Michigan Law Review

    Class Speaker

    Order of the Coif

  • Harvard UniversityA.B.cum laude

    Captain, Harvard Rugby Football Club

    President, Hasty Pudding Theatricals