Michael J. Mueller
- Employment Law
For nearly 25 years, I have worked with and on behalf of management with regard to labor and employment matters. During my career, I have been privileged to counsel and represent all manner of employers, such as transportation and parcel delivery companies, banks, private and public colleges and universities, hospitals, medical practice groups, large and small retail establishments, restaurant chains, refineries, manufacturers, grocers, landscaping companies, publishers and printers, accounting firms, retirement homes, funeral homes, research laboratories, trade associations, construction and painting firms, steel fabricators, hotels, staffing agencies, insurance agencies, religious institutions, day care providers, engineering firms, and even law firms.
I believe my experience with such a broad range of employers has provided me with "business sense," which allows me to partner with clients in crafting practical and affordable business solutions to legal challenges. Experience has taught me that most employment disputes-while they must be taken seriously-have little or no merit and that they can and should be disposed of quickly and economically by means of a very modest settlement or a dispositive motion. In the very rare situation in which a case actually has to be tried, I will personally handle it and strive to do so in the most cost advantageous manner possible. In fact, any matter referred to me will receive my personal attention, as our firm does not employ associate attorneys.
I have counseled and represented employers across the nation with regard to the prevention and defense of claims of employment discrimination based on age, ancestry, color, disability, gender, marital status, national origin, race, parental status, pregnancy, sexual orientation, and veteran status. I also counsel and represent management in matters concerned with breach of the duty of loyalty, breach of fiduciary duty, employee benefits, employee benefit plan contributions, employee discipline, employee theft, independent contractors, reductions-in-force, restrictive covenants and non-competition agreements, retaliatory discharge, sexual harassment, trade secrets, wages, unfair labor practices, and class action litigation. In addition, I prepare executive employment agreements and employee handbooks, and provide advice with respect to the interpretation and application of collective bargaining agreements.
Away from the employment realm, I am experienced in matters involving public housing, fair housing, minority business enterprises, and special education issues. With regard to special education issues, my advice and services are provided pro bono.
I am admitted to practice in the state of Illinois. I am also a member of the bar of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, the general and trial bars of the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of Illinois, and the bars of the U.S. District Courts for the Southern District of Illinois, the Eastern District of Michigan, and the Eastern District of Wisconsin.
Prior Professional Affiliations
Prior to founding Buzogany Marks & Mueller LLC with William A. Buzogany and James Marks, during the course of my career I was affiliated with several other firms, including McDermott Will & Emery LLP, Barnes & Thornburg LLP, and Jackson Lewis LLP.
I received my law degree in 1986 from DePaul University College of Law. I received my B.A. degree with college honors in Liberal Arts and Sciences from the University of Illinois in 1981.
I served in the U.S. Navy for six years, resided in Japan for a number of years, and worked for a railroad for 10 years while pursuing my degrees.