Jeffrey Kaplan is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading private equity attorneys, advising private equity firms for over 20 years in all aspects of their business and operations, with a particular emphasis on the formation and operation of investment funds, as well as the organization, structuring, and operation of their management companies.

As one of the leaders of Kirkland’s market leading global investment funds practice, Jeffrey has played a key role in the development of Kirkland’s innovative platform serving the industry.

Clients routinely turn to Jeffrey for his legal advice, commercial judgement and creative solutions in connection with their most important complex matters, including with respect to the formation of private equity funds and SPVs, product and strategy expansion, fund restructurings, continuation fund transactions, co-investment programs, investment warehousing, seed capital and anchor investor arrangements, cross-fund transactions, investor defaults, strategic GP-level transactions, succession planning and personnel management, investor relations and PR/crisis-management issues, mergers and acquisitions, debt financings, regulatory compliance, conflicts issues and general corporate counseling.

Jeffrey is a frequent speaker, panel moderator and market commentator, and has been recognized year after year in numerous publications as a leading private equity attorney. He is described by clients in Chambers Global as “an impressive person; commercially savvy, strategic and he has high integrity. Those are just standout qualities of his.”

In addition to his practice representing some of the world’s leading established private equity firms, Jeffrey runs Kirkland’s market leading private equity emerging manager program, advising emerging managers in all aspects of their business, from the initial start-up phase through a successful fund launch and beyond.


Thought Leadership


Listed in The Legal 500 U.S., for Private Equity Funds (Including Venture Capital) (2023)

Listed in Chambers Global for Investment Funds: Private Equity: Fund Formation (2021–2023)

Listed in Chambers USA for Investment Funds: Private Equity: Fund Formation (2020–2023)

Listed in IFLR1000: “Highly Regarded” Leading Lawyer, (2018–2023)

Listed in Leading Lawyers for Corporate Finance Law and Securities & Venture Finance Law (2015, 2017)

Listed in IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms (2013–2021)

Listed in Who’s Who Legal The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers — Private Funds (2015–2018)

Memberships & Affiliations

Advisory Board Member, Midwest Chapter of Private Equity CFO Association


Admissions & Qualifications

  • Illinois


  • Harvard Law SchoolJ.D.2002
  • University of Wisconsin-MadisonB.B.A., Finance1999