As a partner in the Litigation Practice at Gould & Ratner, Stephanie Petersmarck handles a wide variety of complex commercial cases through all phases of litigation. She also conducts internal investigations and counsels clients on statutory and regulatory matters, best practices, and business standards and solutions.

Stephanie has experience involving a broad spectrum of business and legal issues, including:

  • breach of contract
  • breach of fiduciary duty
  • products liability
  • professional malpractice
  • intellectual property
  • real estate and development disputes
  • securities violations
  • employment-related matters

Stephanie has been recognized by Illinois Super Lawyers in the area of Business Litigation for 2017 and was named a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers from 2011-2015.



  • University of Michigan Law School, J.D., 2002
  • University of Michigan, B.A., with distinction, 1997

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana
  • U.S. Tax Court


  • American Bar Association, Women’s Advocate Committee
  • Chicago Bar Association, Judicial Evaluation Committee Investigator
  • Chicago Council of Lawyers
  • Illinois State Bar Association

Key Cases or Transactions


  • Representation of national financial services company tendering defense and pursuing financial loss coverage under PL/D&O and excess policies of claims alleging misconduct in provision of consumer mortgages.
  • Representation of global consumer goods manufacturer asserting product liability and contribution claims arising out of personal injury during industrial accident, including recovery of million-dollar judgment at trial.
  • Representation ofnational manufacturer of transportation equipment in products liability and personal injury lawsuit in which plaintiff sought millions of dollars.
  • Representation ofinternational motor sports entity in putative class action alleging variety of contract and tort claims in connection with racing event.
  • Representation of insurance and investment companies in internal investigations regarding alleged bid rigging, business steering, receipt of improper incentives, fraud, and violation of anti-kickback laws.
  • Representation of multi-line business and personal insurance agency in expansive asbestos litigation claims pending against its insured, a manufacturer of resilient sheet and tile flooring.
  • Representation of worldwide manufacturer of farm and construction equipment against various product defect lawsuits.
  • Representation of international medical technology company conducting internal investigation involving allegations of financial misconduct and fraud, including violation of anti-kickback laws.
  • Representation of various firms, businesses, and individuals responding to subpoenas, governmental letter requests, and other pre-suit and third-party discovery for information, documents, and witness testimony. 
  • Representation of a local business prosecuting discriminatory zoning claims against municipality in five-day federal trial.
  • Family Business and Entrepreneurs

  • Representation of beneficiaries of highly-contested estate involving closely-held family businesses and complex financing issues requiring coordination with international financial lending institution.
  • Human Resources and Employment

  • Representation of a leading private food manufacturer enforcing non-compete agreement with former employees.
  • Representation of equipment manufacturer pursuing claims for breach of purchase agreement and non-compete agreement and defending antitrust counterclaims.
  • Representation of top executive of global financial and investment firm pursuing damages due to breach of employment contract, including million-dollar recovery in settlement.
  • Representation of global commercial services provider responding to EEOC investigation and defending against civil law suit alleging Title VII discrimination, sexual harassment, and retaliation claims
  • Intellectual Property

  • Representation of baked goods manufacturer specializing in custom formulations defending against conversion claims and prosecuting breach of contract and violations of trade secret and intellectual property laws.
  • Representation of leading developer of custom-engineered and application specific technology products and solutions defending patent infringement claims involving financial institutions analyzing intellectual property and infringement liability and negotiating indemnification by product and service providers to minimize risk and exposure.
  • Real Estate

  • Representation of an international commercial real estate service firm defending breach of contract, professional malpractice, breach of fiduciary duty and negligent misrepresentation claims in arbitration.
  • Representation of commercial real estate services firm defending claims for breach of contract, breach of fiduciary and statutory duties, and professional negligence on expedited, full-discovery bases in AAA arbitration.
  • Tax Controversy

  • Representation of former top executive of billion-dollar commercial real-estate investment management firm prosecuting treatment of income against Internal Revenue Service.
  • Representation of legal and tax professionals prosecuting and defending against claims involving development and sale of tax preparation services and strategies.