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Ogletree Deakins Expands Benefits Practice Group in Chicago

   |   Press Release

CHICAGO, IL – December 3, 2007 – National labor and employment specialty firm Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. (Ogletree Deakins) has significantly expanded its benefits practice group by hiring two nationally respected attorneys: Mark E. Schmidtke and Eric P. Mathisen. Mr. Schmidtke will join Ogletree Deakins as a shareholder, while Mr. Mathisen will be of counsel. At Ogletree Deakins, the attorneys will bring their nationally recognized expertise on employee benefits law and litigation to the firm’s national benefits practice group, which now will number 20 attorneys.

Both Mr. Schmidtke and Mr. Mathisen previously served in the law firm of Hoeppner Wagner & Evans LLP. Mr. Schmidtke was a partner with both Hoeppner Wagner & Evans LLP and Schmidtke Hoeppner Consultants LLP, a law consulting practice devoted to handling ERISA issues and related matters. He has represented insurers and other clients nationally in employee benefit litigation matters for more than 25 years. He also has served as national ERISA counsel to several large insurers, and has authored briefs on employee benefits issues filed in the U.S. Supreme Court. 

“Mark Schmidtke brings a national reputation and a recognized ERISA litigation practice that will add significant depth to our existing benefit litigation practice. Eric Mathisen complements that even further, by adding his own highly respected benefits law expertise,” said Joel A. Daniel, an Ogletree Deakins shareholder and head of the firm’s benefits practice group.

Eric P. Mathisen concentrates his practice on matters involving ERISA litigation, bad faith litigation, labor and employment law, and HIPAA.  His practice in the area of ERISA includes the litigation of pension, life, health, disability, and employee benefits issues throughout the U.S. He also speaks on ERISA and labor and employment topics.

“Mark’s and Eric’s nationally recognized expertise on benefits law is an excellent fit for Ogletree Deakins and will serve as a key supplement to our already well regarded employee benefits practice. Our firm and clients will significantly benefit from their skill and counsel,” said Arthur B. Smith, co-managing shareholder of Ogletree Deakins’ Chicago office.

About Ogletree Deakins

Ogletree Deakins is the nation’s third largest labor and employment law firm, representing management in all types of employment-related legal matters. The firm has 400 lawyers located in 32 offices from Miami to Los Angeles. In addition to handling labor and employment law matters, the firm has thriving practices focused on business immigration, employee benefits, and workplace safety and health law.  Ogletree Deakins represents a diverse range of clients, including more than half of the Fortune 50 corporations in the U.S.

For more information, please contact Karen Gonzales, communications manager, at 210-277-3606.

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