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Philip Harnett Corboy, Jr.

Photo of Philip Harnett Corboy, Jr.
33 N. Dearborn Street
21st Floor
Chicago, IL 60602


Philip Harnett Corboy, Jr. was admitted to the Illinois Bar in 1978 and worked in a small white-collar criminal defense firm before joining the criminal division of the Cook County State's Attorney's Office that same year.  At the time of his resignation from that public office in 1985, he was a "first-chair" prosecutor - responsible for trying such felonies as murder, rape, armed robbery and kidnapping - in one of the major courtrooms at the Cook County Criminal Courts Building at 26th and California in Chicago. He joined Corboy & Demetrio as an associate that same year and became a partner in 1991.

Mr. Corboy’s practice centers on representing plaintiffs in aviation and construction litigation, medical and professional negligence, product and premises liability, claims brought under the Federal Employers' Liability Act, and vehicular accident law. He has settled or tried to verdict 65 cases in which plaintiffs have recovered $1 million or more.  These include:

  • $22.5 million settlement in October 2011 for the family of a woman who was killed as a result of the derailment of a train in Rockford, IL, which was carrying dozens of Canadian National Railway cars filled with ethanol.
  • $18 million settlement for a Mexican national who was killed by a piece of falling glass from Chicago's CNA Tower.
  • $16.7 million verdict for a brain-damaged pedestrian involved in a collision with an automobile.
  • $11 million settlement for a Chicago dental student burned in an automobile fire.
  • $8.5 million settlement for the family of an assistant fire chief killed when a fire erupted at a Neiman Marcus store. 
  • $8 million jury verdict for the estate of a Homewood wife and mother who was fatally struck by a truck after she stood on the shoulder of I-294 to investigate her flat tire.  
  • $7.67 million jury verdict for an injured construction worker.
  • $7.5 million settlement for the family of a construction worker killed in a balcony fall.
  • Record-setting settlement of $7 million for a 78 year-old woman who was injured when she was struck by a malfunctioning automatic door as she entered a Target store.
  • $5.35 million verdict for a limousine driver who lost his leg in an automobile incident at Chicago's O'Hare Airport.
  • $5.1 million settlement for a college student who was injured by a car that slid on ice from a broken water main that the City of Chicago failed to maintain. 
  • $4.5 million verdict for a 66-year-old man who was injured in an auto collision in central Illinois.  

Mr. Corboy has tried cases in a number of states throughout the country and served as lead counsel in litigation on behalf of Cook County, Illinois, against the country's major tobacco companies to recoup public monies paid out for treatment of tobacco-related illnesses.  

He is a Past President of the Illinois Trial Lawyers Association and a member of the American Association for Justice, where he served as an Illinois State delegate and on its National Board of Governors. A long-standing member of the Illinois State Bar Association and the American Bar Association, he is also a member of the Chicago Bar Association, where he served on its Board of Managers. In 2002, he was inducted into the invitation-only American College of Trial Lawyers, the country's pre-eminent organization of trial lawyers that limits its membership to those trial lawyers who are outstanding and considered the best in their state.

Mr. Corboy is widely recognized by his peers as one of the top attorneys in the state of Illinois.  He has attained the designation of Super Lawyer for the 20th year in a row, which is awarded to fewer than 5% of lawyers in the state.  Super Lawyers also named Corboy as one of the Top 100 Illinois lawyers in 2024 for a 12th year.

Mr. Corboy has been recognized in Best Lawyers in America for his work in representing victims of personal injury every year since 2006, and Corboy & Demetrio has been named in Best Law Firms in America every year since the directory's inception.

In addition, since 2003, the Leading Lawyers Network has named Mr. Corboy in the top 5% of all attorneys in Illinois, also naming him to Top Ten Product Liability Attorneys-Plaintiff's in 2019.  Since 2015, Mr. Corboy has been named to Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America, which is an elite group of the best legal minds in our country, including all sitting U.S. Supreme Court Justices.  He has been selected to Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers since the award's inception in 2019. Also, since 2015, he has been named to the prestigious Irish Legal 100, whose highly-selected members are 100 leading lawyers nationwide of Irish descent.  

Mr. Corboy is the 2011-2012 recipient of the DePaul University College of Law Distinguished Alumnus Award, the highest distinction the College of Law can bestow.

He was appointed by U.S. Senator Dick Durbin to a screening committee to assist the Senator in selecting Federal District Court Judges, U.S. Attorneys, and U.S. Marshals for the Northern District of Illinois, serving from 2009-2017.

Mr. Corboy was also appointed to the Equal Justice Illinois Campaign Blue-Ribbon Committee where he has worked to increase state funding of civil legal aid so that all Illinois residents, regardless of income, have access to the justice system.

Mr. Corboy is a frequent panelist and lecturer to local, state and national bar associations and is quoted extensively in news stories on matters relating to law and government. He has been interviewed and quoted in every print and broadcast media outlet in Chicago and the greater Chicago land area, as well as making appearances and offering commentary on legal issues nationally on the Today Show, The Early Show with Bryant Gumbel, Good Morning America, Court-TV, MSNBC and Fox News' The Edge with Paula Zahn. He has also been quoted on legal topics in Time Magazine, Lawyer's Weekly U.S.A., Of Counsel, Chicago Magazine, Inside Litigation, Crain's Chicago Business, The ABA Journal, General Surgery News, and others.

Mr. Corboy devotes much of his time to charitable and not-for-profit endeavors.  

In 2018, Mr. Corboy was elected to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Foundation (USOPF) Board of Directors.  Previously, he served as a Trustee of USOPF and helped raise critical financial resources that enabled the U.S. Olympic Committee to make investments in areas promoting excellence and innovation for Team USA.  In 2020, he was appointed to Villanova University's President's Advisory Council.

Mr. Corboy is a past President of the Board of Directors of the Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago, Illinois’ largest legal aid program for low income people. He served on the Board of Illinois Variety Club's International Children's Charity for a number of years and was Vice-President of The Chicago Lighthouse, one of the country's oldest organizations for people who are blind or visually impaired. He is a member of the Honorary Dean's Council of DePaul University College of Law.



Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, President, 2008-2009; President's Executive Committee, 2015-2016, 2014-2015

Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago, Board of Directors, President, 2008-2010

American College of Trial Lawyers, Fellow, by invitation

Appointed by U.S. Senator Dick Durbin to Northern District Screening Committee for Federal District Court Judges, U.S. Attorneys and U.S. Marshals, Member, 2009-2017

"AV Preeminent" Peer Review Rating by Martindale-Hubbell (Martindale's highest rating.)

Cook County Circuit Court Committee to Recommend Local Rules for Mandatory Arbitration, Appointment

Crain's Chicago Business' 2023 Notable Litigators and Trial Attorneys

DePaul University College of Law, Distinguished Alumnus Award, 2012

DePaul University College of Law, Honorary Dean's Council

Equal Justice Illinois Campaign Blue-Ribbon Committee, 2009-Present

Illinois Super Lawyers - Top 5% of all Illinois attorneys, 2005-Present

Irish Legal 100, 2015-Present

Lawdragon 500 Global Plaintiff Lawyers, 2024

Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America, 2015-Present

Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Consumer Lawyers, 2019-Present

Leading Lawyers Network Member - Top 5% of all Illinois attorneys, 2003-Present; Top Ten Product Liability Attorneys-Plaintiff's, 2019

Leading Lawyers Network, Advisory Board

Oxford’s “Who’s Who”

“The Best Lawyers in America” - Personal Injury Litigation, Plaintiff, 2006-present

The Society of Trial Lawyers, Chicago, IL, Fellow

Professional Affiliations

American Association for Justice (AAJ) formerly known as Association of Trial Lawyers of America (ATLA), Illinois Delegate, 2001-2003; Board of Governors, 2003-2005

American Bar Association (ABA)

American College of Trial Lawyers (ACTL)

Chicago Bar Association (CBA), Board of Managers, 1994-1996; Judicial Evaluation Committee, 1980-present, Vice-Chairman, 1984-1987, Chairman, 1987-1990, General Chairman, 1989-1990; House Committee, Chairman, 1990-1991; Long Range Planning Committee, Chairman, 1999-2000; Settlement Program, Mediator, 1988-1989

Cook County Circuit Court Committee to Recommend Local Rules for Court-Annexed Mandatory Arbitration, 1988

Equal Justice Illinois Campaign Blue-Ribbon Committee Member

Illinois Bar Foundation, Honorary Gala Co-Chair, 2017

Illinois State Bar Association (ISBA)

Illinois Trial Lawyers Association (ITLA), President, 2008; President-Elect, 2007; First Vice-President, 2006; Second Vice-President, 2005; Leonard Ring Memorial Award, Nominating Committee, 2004; Executive Committee, 2002-2003, 2005-2010, 2014; Nominating Committee, 2000; Legislative Committee, 1997-present; Board of Managers, 1997-present

The Society of Trial Lawyers, Chicago, IL

"Best Lawyers in America," Member

Illinois Super Lawyer - Named one of the top 100 Lawyers in Illinois

Leading Lawyers Network Member - Top 5% of Illinois Attorneys

Leading Lawyers Network Advisory Board, 2007-Present

Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory, AV Rated - Highest Rating Possible

Oxford's "Who's Who," 1992-Present

Chicago Magazine's annual "Top 100 Attorneys in Illinois" 

Community Involvement

United States Olympic and Paralympic Foundation, Board of Directors, 2018-Present

United States Olympic and Paralympic Foundation, Trustee, 2015-2018

Villanova University President’s Advisory Council, Member, 2020-Present

Legal Assistance Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago, Board of Directors, President, 2008-2010; Board Member, 1997-2018

DePaul University College of Law, Dean's Council, 1996-2014; Honorary Dean's Council 2014-Present

The Chicago Lighthouse for the Blind, Board of Directors, 2000-2005; Vice-Chairman of the Board, 2002-2005

Democratic National Committee, Permanent Committee on Credentials, 1992 and 2016 

DePaul University Presidents' Club, 1987-1997

Variety Club Children's Charity, Tent No. 26, Vice President, 1987-1994


Practice Areas



Speaking Engagements and Presentations

“Demonstrative Exhibits," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association’s Damages Seminar, Feb. 17, 2023 

"Non-economic Damages," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association Damages Seminar, Feb. 21, 2020

"Professional Referral Relationships," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association Ethics & Professionalism Seminar, March 23, 2018 

  • "Anatomy of a Civil Lawsuit" Lecture, University of Chicago Law School, Litigation Lab, January 2018 
  • “Punitive Damages,”  Illinois Trial Lawyer’s Association Annual Damages Seminar, 2015                                                                                                            “Representing the Undocumented Plaintiff,” Kansas Association for Justice’s Annual Meeting, 2014

  • "The Plaintiff Attorney's Perspective-Deviation from the Standard of Care," 14th Annual Chicago Trauma Symposium, 2012 

  • "Civil Practice and Procedure Update 2012 - Discovery," Illinois State Bar Association Continuing Legal Education, 2012
  • "The Plaintiff Attorney's Perspective," 13th Annual Chicago Trauma Symposium, Chicago, 2011   
  • "Social Media and Jury Selection," Western Trial Lawyers Association, Hawaii, 2010
  • "Trial Attorneys and the Political Process," Villanova University Lecture to the Political Science Department, 2010
  • "Alternative Dispute Resolution and Its Impact on the System," 20th Annual DePaul Law Review Symposium, DePaul University College of Law, 2010
  • "Closing Arguments, Plaintiff's Perspective," Litigation Skills III Conference, Law Bulletin Publishing Company, 2008
  • "Winning Strategies in Disability Trial Cases, " Western Trial Lawyers Association, 2007
  • "What Makes the ‘Neurologically Damaged Baby Case’ so Different?," Crittenden Medical Conference, Boston, 2007
  • "Bariatric Surgery: What the Plaintiff's Lawyers Think, the Defense Lawyers, and Most Importantly the Jurors!," San Francisco, 2006
  • "Hi-Tech Low Cost - Don't Be Afraid to Bring It In-House," Western Trial Lawyers Association, Maui, 2006
  • "The Bottom Line - What the Jury Thinks," Crittenden Medical Conference, Arizona, 2006
  • "Medical Liability Point-Counterpoint: Malpractice as I See It," American Urological Association, 2005
  • "Recognizing & Preventing the $10 Million Verdict," Crittenden Medical Conference, 2005
  • "Update on Intrastate Forum Non Conveniens," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 2004
  • "Winning Strategies for Disability Jury Trials," American Conference Institute, 2003
  • "Severity of Verdict - Where Is It Going & How Do We Stop It?," Crittenden Medical Conference, Nevada, 2003
  • "Civil Liability for Injuries During a Sporting Event," Chicago Bar Association, 2001
  • "Plaintiff Attorneys v. Defense Attorneys," Crittenden Medical Conference, Washington, DC, 2001
  • "Economic Damages," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 2000
  • "Daubert & Kumho: A Review and Their Practical Application," Western Trial Lawyers Association, 2000
  • "AIDS/HIV Patient Records," Medical Educational Services, Inc, 1998
  • "Forum Non Conveniens," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 1998
  • "Motions-in-Limine," Illinois State Bar Association, 1998
  • Judge, Criminal Justice Trial Advocacy Competition, John Marshall Law School and American Bar Association  1998
  • "Collecting, Analyzing and Preserving the Evidence," DuPage County Bar Association, 1997
  • "A Christian Perspective on Litigation in America," Business Executives for Economic Justice, 1996
  •  "Enhancing Your Practice Through Public Speaking," Chicago Bar Association, 1996
  • "The Art of Persuasion," De Paul University College of Law, 1996
  • "Taking the Defendant's Deposition," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 1994
  • "Product Liability," Chicago Bar Association , 1993
  • "Personal Injury Litigation," Career Day Program, DePaul University, 1993
  • "Evidence," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 1993
  • "Personal Injury Litigation," Career Day Program, DePaul University, 1992
  • "Summation in a Civil Case," Chicago Bar Association , 1992
  • "Emerging Issues in Automobile Product Liability Litigation," American Bar Association, 1992
  • Judge, National Criminal Justice Trial Advocacy Program, John Marshall Moot Court and American Bar Association, 1992
  • "Personal Injury Litigation," Career Day Program, DePaul University, 1991
  • "Proving Injury", Chicago Bar Association , 1991
  • Judicial Evaluation," Chicago Cable Access Television, 1990
  • "Litigation Trends in the 1990's," Continuing Legal Education Satellite Network, Video Presentation, 1990
  • Judge, Northwestern University School of Law Moot Court Competition, 1990
  • "Tort Litigation," Chicago Bar Association , 1990
  • "Demonstrative Evidence," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 1989
  • "Airline Accidents," NALI, 1989
  • "Increasing Damages through Closing Arguments," Tennessee Trial Lawyers Association Annual Convention, 1989
  • "Proof of Damages," Chicago Bar Association, 1989
  • Judge, National Law School Trial Advocacy Competition, Association of Trial Lawyers of America, 1989
  • "Trial by Jury," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 1988
  • "Update," Illinois Trial Lawyers Association, 1988
  • Instructor, Chicago Bar Association Trial Practice Course, 1988
  • "Torts and Insurance," American Bar Association,  Annual Convention, New York City, 1986
  • Kent College of Law, Student Intern Program, 1984 - 1985
  • John Marshall Law School, Intensive Trial Advocacy Program, 1984

Major Media Coverage



Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania, B.S., 1973

DePaul University College of Law, Chicago, J.D., 1977

National Institute of Trial Advocacy, Boulder, Colorado, 1980


Bar & Court Admissions

  • Illinois, 1978
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 2008
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of Illinois, 2020
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 1978
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, 1994
  • Pro Hac Vice in Indiana, Iowa, Arizona, Ohio, Colorado, Florida, Wisconsin and Texas.
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Corboy & Demetrio
33 N. Dearborn Street
21st Floor
Chicago, IL 60602