Christopher J. Esbrook
Chris is a litigator who has won cases for his clients across industries and in venues throughout the country. He has deep experience in complex commercial litigation, mass tort, toxic tort, class action, environmental litigation, insurance and indemnity litigation, and disputes arising out of corporate transactions.
He has served as trial counsel for clients in high-stakes, high-pressure litigation. He also has a track record of success in transnational litigation, serving as trial counsel in international arbitrations as well as in foreign civil courtrooms. In addition, he counsels clients on the application of unclaimed property law to business operations and represents clients in unclaimed property audits.
Chris founded Esbrook P.C. in 2018 after fifteen years as a litigator at Kirkland & Ellis LLP in Chicago.
Selected Mass Action, Class Action, and Multidistrict Litigation Experience:
- In re JUUL Labs, Inc,., Marketing, Sales Practices, and Products Liability Litigation (MDL No. 2913): Liaison Counsel for Retailer Defendants in multidistrict litigation regarding JUUL electronic cigarette vaping product litigation.
- In re: Oil Spill by the Oil Rig “Deepwater Horizon” in the Gulf of Mexico, on April 20, 2010 (MDL No. 2179): Defended BP in multi-district litigation arising out of the Deepwater Horizon incident. Deep and sustained experience in all aspects of the multidistrict litigation process.
- In re: Society Insurance Co. COVID-19 Business Interruption Litigation: Counsel in litigation related to insurance coverage of alleged COVID-19 related losses.
- Henderson v. Rite Aid: Defended Rite Aid in class action alleging damages arising out of mislabeling of consumer food products.
Selected Commercial Litigation and M&A Dispute Experience:
- Sea Launch Litigation:
- Boeing v. Energia, et al.: Won summary judgment in the United States District Court for the Central District of California against former joint venture partners related to international joint venture that launched satellites into space from the Earth’s equator. (The Boeing Co. v. KB Yuzhnoye, et. al., Case No. CV 13-0030, Dkt. 750 (C.D. Cal. Sept. 28, 2015). Conducted two-week arbitration in Stockholm, Sweden on similar issues.
- Razvitie v. Boeing, et al.: Won full defense verdict at trial in Moscow, Russia where shareholders of former joint venture partner sought to invalidate the contract at issue in the California action.
- Confidential Earnout Litigation: Counsel in connection with dispute over earnout payment arising out of multi-billion-dollar sale of asset management firm.
- Confidential Purchase Price Dispute: Counsel for seller in post-closing purchase price dispute arising out of $1+ billion sale of investment advisory firm.
- Confidential GP/LP Dispute: Counsel for General Partner in dispute with Limited Partner regarding investment protocols.
- Polaris Product Liability Litigation: Defended Dealers/Retailers of Polaris products at issue in product liability class action alleging economic loss arising out of alleged defects.
- Commercial Bag Company v. Land O’Lakes, Inc.: Counsel for plaintiff in connection with alleged breach of long-term supply contract.
Selected Insurance Coverage Matters:
- Northrop Grumman v. Aon Risk Services: Counsel for Aon Risk Services related to insurance coverage claim for $1+ billion of alleged losses arising out of hurricane Katrina.
- Flow Polymers, LLC v. AIG: Successfully recovered insurance coverage related to losses stemming from plant fire.
Selected Bankruptcy Litigation:
- In re: Energy Future Holdings, et al: Represented former officers and directors of EFH in its Chapter 11 case in the U. S. Bankruptcy Court of the District of Delaware. EFH’s Chapter 11 case is the largest operating Chapter 11 case ever filed in Delaware and the seventh largest Chapter 11 case filed in history.
- In re: Forever 21, Inc.: Represented former officer in connection with claims for personal liability from creditors.
- In re Lord & Taylor LLC: Represented post-bankruptcy breach of contract claims related to revenue tails.
Selected Sports Matters:
- Confidential College Basketball Matter: Won breach of contract action on behalf of prominent Division I college basketball coach against former university.
- Confidential NFL Football Dispute: Represent professional football player in tort dispute.
- Confidential NFL Football Dispute: Represent former professional football player in defamation action.
- Confidential Major League Soccer Matter: Counsel in dispute arising out of incident at Chicago Fire match.
Selected Environmental Matters:
- In re Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE) Products Liability Litigation (MDL No. 1358): Defended client in product liability multi-district litigation arising out of the use of gasoline additive MTBE.
- Confidential CERCLA/NRDA Matter: Counsel for publicly traded steel company in environmental litigation with governmental and private parties arising out of alleged PCB contamination of river.
- Confidential PFAS Indemnity Matter: Counsel for electricity generation company in connection with indemnity dispute related to PFAS contamination.
Domestic and International Judgment Enforcement and Asset Recovery:
- Multiple Confidential Matters: Enforcement counsel for clients to investigate assets and initiate collection proceedings in multiple jurisdictions nationally and internationally
Restrictive Covenant Litigation:
- Counsel strategy and litigate multiple cases arising out of alleged breaches of non-compete, non-solicit, and confidentiality obligations in employment agreements and non-disclosure agreements.