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300 S. Wacker Drive
Suite 3400
Chicago IL 60606
TEL: 312.786.6166
FAX: 312.986.9192
Practice Areas
  • J.D., magna cum laude, University of Notre Dame School of Law, 1987
  • M.S., Loyola University of Chicago, 1985 (industrial relations)
  • B.A., University of Notre Dame, 1981 (psychology)
Bar & Court Admissions
  • Illinois
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
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Michael I. Richardson


Michael I. Richardson is a partner and co-chair of the Employee Benefits Practice Group at Franczek Radelet P.C.

Mike brings a one of a kind perspective to a diverse clientele that includes some of the world’s largest corporations and public bodies, entrepreneurial businesses, mid-cap companies, municipalities and various employer associations. With his extensive experience in employee benefits, collective bargaining and union-management relations, Mike draws upon his unique background afforded by his work with private and public sector employers as well as multiemployer benefit plans to fashion creative and effective solutions for employers.

The combination of Mike’s experience has resulted in significant value for employers. His practice provides an opportunity for him to share his knowledge with employers from one industry or one size employer to another. On a daily basis he helps employers achieve goals through imaginative planning and thought, and he does so by asking “What if?” and “Why not?” throughout the initial strategy discussions.

Mike’s experience has made him a leader in the multiemployer benefit plan community, and he continues to be a leader in collective bargaining, serving as chief spokesperson with regard to numerous bargaining relationships. The complexity of his practice does not interfere with his skill and ability to make complicated issues easy to understand for all those involved.

Mike recently joined the Board of Directors of Easter Seals of Metropolitan Chicago.  Easter Seals annually serves over 33,000 Chicago-area children with disabilities and special needs.  Mike and his wife Ruth are both honored and humbled to join this esteemed organization that is dedicated to bettering the lives of individuals with disabilities and their families. 

During law school, Mike was an editor of the Notre Dame Law Review (1985 - 1987). He has published numerous articles on employee benefits topics, including “Securing Employee Welfare Benefits Through ERISA,” “Funding Post-Retirement Medical Benefits through a VEBA” and “Protecting Your Fund from Unreimbursable Future Medical Costs.” In 2017, Mike was named a Leading Lawyer by Law Bulletin Publishing.

Representative Experience

  • Serves as association counsel, chief spokesperson and trustee or fund counsel for the multiemployer benefit funds of employer associations in the construction, automotive and textile industries
  • Led one of the largest and most complex pension error correction projects ever undertaken which prompted revision of IRS correction procedures, challenges by numerous advocacy groups, a U.S. DOL audit, Congressional inquiries, hundreds of benefit claim appeals, several federal court lawsuits and a variety of insurance coverage issues
  • Leads the employee benefit representation of a Fortune 500, global transportation company with tens of thousands plan participants
  • Chief spokesperson with respect to hundreds of collective bargaining agreements in a wide variety of industries including construction, linen and laundry services, trucking, hospitality, manufacturing and public employment