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About me

    Joel Brodsky is “a battler who answers almost every knock with a legal counterpunch”. Chicago Tribune, January 15, 2008.  Joel Brodsky was admitted to the practice of law in the State of Illinois in November, 1982, thirty (30) years ago.  He is also admitted to practice in the Federal Courts for the Northern District of Illinois, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court.  Mr. Brodsky is also a member of the Federal Trial Bar.

     Joel A. Brodsky has tried numerous jury and bench trials in felony and misdemeanor criminal cases, ranging from 1st degree murder and armed robbery to domestic battery and to driving under the influence.  Further, Mr. Brodsky has represented clients in both Illinois State Court and Federal Court in commercial litigation matters ranging from trade secrets cases, to legal malpractice, to banking law violations. He has also represented clients in divorce, custody and visitation matters where issues such as religion, junk science evaluations, and visitation interference has been at issue   He has also appeared in a number of appeals to the Illinois First District Court of Appeals and the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.

    Joel A. Brodsky was named by The National Trial Lawyers, an invitation only association of trial lawyers, to it’s Top 100 list of criminal defense trial lawyers in Illinois in 2013. Also, in 1996 and again in 2009, the nationally recognized Martindale-Hubble lawyers rating service gave Mr. Brodsky a rating of "Very High" in the areas of reliability, diligence, ethics, conduct, and other areas relating to professional responsibility.  Martindale-Hubble further rated Mr. Brodsky "High to Very High" for legal ability.  Additionally, in 1997, The Guide to Leading Illinois Attorneys, named Mr. Brodsky to its lists of leading Illinois attorneys practicing in the areas of Felony and Misdemeanor Defense. According to the American Research Corporation, who publishes the Guide, this places Mr. Brodsky in the top 6% of attorneys who practice in each of those areas of law.  Further, Mr. Brodsky is listed in Who’s Who in American Law, 10th Edition, which is published by Marquis Who’s Who, publishers of the original Who’s Who in America.

    Joel A. Brodsky  presently practices law in Cook County, Illinois. Over the past 30 years Mr. Brodsky has been a partner in several law firms, both large and small. Prior to 1987, Joel A. Brodsky was employed at Stone & Hughes a medium size law firm which specialized in commercial law.  At that time Mr. Brodsky was involved in the litigation of matters in which his clients were large financial institutions and commercial lenders.  Since 1987 he has concentrated his practice in the areas of  criminal defense and complex commercial litigation.  He has also taken on a select number of domestic relations cases, choosing the divorce cases he gets involved in carefully.  He will only take a divorce case where he sees that he can help right a wrong or reverse an injustice.

    Joel A. Brodsky has represented clients in several high profile cases, from the Drew Peterson murder case, to the Joseph Reyes criminal contempt case, where his client was charged with criminal contempt for taking his daughter to church. Mr. Brodsky has appeared on the Today Show, Good Morning America, The CBS Morning Show, 20/20, Larry King, Nancy Grace, In Session, CNN, HLN, and many local television and radio news and current event shows. He is a highly regarded speaker who has addressed students and alumni at the De Paul University Law School and the Lake Forest College Alumni Association.

    Joel A. Brodsky’s philosophy in criminal cases is to fight. He always says “you don’t need to  hire an attorney to plead guilty, you can do that yourself, you need an attorney to fight for you”.  In commercial cases his approach to legal problems is from a practical perspective.  He is a problem solver who encourages and directs his efforts towards reasonable settlement of disputes whenever possible. In the divorce and domestic relations matters he chooses to take his goal is to be so overpowering in his presentation of the facts that even a prejudiced judge cannot ignore them.  Mr. Brodsky will always provide aggressive and zealous representation where his clients are confronted with unreasonable demands or frivolous lawsuits, or when an adversary has an agenda other than the resolution of a good faith dispute.  Joel A. Brodsky is not afraid to go to trial to protect his clients interests.  Mr. Brodsky values the loyalty of his clientele, which has resulted from his philosophy.

    Joel A. Brodsky was born in Chicago on July 24, 1957, and has resided in Chicago his entire life.  He attended Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree, Cum Laude.  He then attended DePaul University School of Law in Chicago where he was awarded his Juris Doctor degree in June of 1982.  Mr. Brodsky is married and has two daughters and two step daughters.


Photos and videos

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Practice areas


  1. Criminal Defense: 70%
    32 years
  2. Litigation: 20%
    32 years
  3. Appeals: 5%
    32 years
  4. Child Custody: 5%
    32 years



Retainer (always)

Payment types:

Cash, Check, Credit card

Attorney endorsements

1 total 

Are you an attorney? Endorse this lawyer

  • Chris R. Brockman

    I have worked closely with Joel on several cases. He provides diligent and zealous representation. He works hard for his clients, endlessly striving toward the best possible result. I highly endorse this attorney.


    Chris Brockman Criminal Defense Attorney
    Relationship: Worked together on matter

Contact info

Law Office of Joel A. Brodsky

8 S Michigan Ave Ste 3200
Chicago, IL, 60603-3320


ILActive And Authorized To Practice Law198211/12/2015

Professional misconduct

This lawyer was disciplined by a state licensing authority.

  1. Suspension
    issued in IL, 2004


    Suspension means an attorney lost his or her license to practice law for a specific period of time. The attorney typically returns to practicing law when the suspension expires.

    Joel’s comment: “From the Review Board Decision: “The Hearing Board found, however, that Brodsky did not act with a dishonest intent, but rather intended to obtain the client's funds in order to safeguard them against a perceived risk of imminent forfeiture to the State. ….... Given its conclusions as to Brodsky's intent, the Hearing Board determined that the Administrator had not proven that Brodsky committed forgery or engaged in conduct involving dishonesty. “”

Avvo contributions
Legal answers
Award nameGrantorDate granted
Top 100 Trial LawyersNational Trial Lawyers Association2015
"High to Very High" for legal abilityMartindale-Hubble2009
Work experience
TitleCompany nameDuration
Principal AttorneyLaw Office of Joel A. Brodsky2010 - Present
Association namePosition nameDuration
National Association of Criminal Defense AttorneysMember2012 - Present
Legal cases
Case nameOutcome
People v. Steve FanadyCase Dismissed
People v. Jef WhiteheadNot Guilty of all charges except misdomeanor domestic battery, for which my client recieved probation.
People v. Oliver BaumannWarrant quashed and case dimissed
See all legal cases 
Publication nameTitleDate
Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal EducationCreditors Rights in Illinois, on Attachment, Replevin and Detinue1986
School nameMajorDegreeGraduated
DePaul University College of LawLawJD - Juris Doctor1982
Drake UniversityHistoryBA - Bachelor of Arts1979
Speaking engagements
Conference nameTitleDate
Continuing Legal EducationMedia Cases - Dealing With the Media, Practial and Ethical Issues2013
Continuing Legal EducationHearsay and the Confrontation Clause2010