Overview

David Zott is a leading trial lawyer based in Kirkland’s Chicago office. He is equally at home in the courtroom, the boardroom or across the negotiating table. So “whether you think you’re actually going to trial, or if you just want it settled as favorably as possible, he’s good for both.” (Chambers USA). David’s practice focuses on complex commercial and class action litigation, with an emphasis on antitrust, energy and bankruptcy litigation.

David represents clients as lead counsel in some of the country’s most complex and important antitrust cases. His clients describe him as an “excellent trial lawyer,” who is “calm when under fire” (Chambers USA). His antitrust work has been repeatedly recognized in leading publications, where he has been lauded as a “bulldog of a litigator, who knows his stuff” (The Legal500), and as “a seasoned,” “very thoughtful litigator who is balanced and strategic.” (Chambers USA).

David has tried numerous cases arising from major corporate reorganizations, as well as led independent investigations of complex corporate financial transactions and asset transfers. David’s trial work has been recognized by The AmLaw Litigation Daily, where he was named “Litigator of the Week,” and by The American Lawyer Magazine, which featured one of his trial victories in “Big Suits.” As a plaintiff, David successfully led a trial team that challenged a corporate spin off from Kerr McGee Corporation. Following their trial win, the case ultimately settled for an historic $5.15 billion, which at the time represented the largest payment for cleanup of environmental contamination in U.S. history.

David also has extensive experience as lead trial counsel for clients in the energy field. He has litigated cases involving all facets of energy exploration, production and marketing. Most recently, David won a defense jury verdict for BP America in South Carolina state court featured in Litigation Daily: “Far From Home Turf, Kirkland Team Lands ‘SUPERB’ Win in South Carolina.”

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Thought Leadership

Seminars

Guest Lecturer, University of Chicago Law School, "Litigating Financial Disputes" (Spring 2015)

Recognition

Listed as a top Antitrust Lawyer
Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
2011–2018

Listed as a top Antitrust Litigator
The Legal 500 U.S., Litigation
2007, 2010, 2012–2016, 2018

Listed as Local Litigation Star
Benchmark Litigation, Antitrust; Environmental
2019

Memberships & Affiliations

American Bar Association, Antitrust Section

Institute for Energy Law

Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation

Credentials

Admissions & Qualifications

  • 2008Texas
  • 1986Illinois

Courts

  • Supreme Court of Illinois
  • Supreme Court of Texas
  • United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Trial Bar
  • United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois
  • United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas

Education

  • University of Michigan Law SchoolJ.D.

    magna cum laude

    1986

    Order of the Coif

  • Northwestern UniversityB.A.with Highest Distinction1983

    Phi Beta Kappa

  • Virginia Military Institute1980