Overview

Adam Diederich is a problem-solver.  He focuses his practice on resolving disputes involving:

  • ownership and control of privately held businesses, including derivative and direct claims, breach of fiduciary duty claims, requests to inspect books and records, and breach of shareholder agreements and LLC agreements;
  • restrictive covenants (noncompete and nonsolicitation agreements), trade secrets, and confidential information; and
  • business torts and complex contract claims.

His experience also includes data breach counseling, drafting restrictive covenant agreements, representing professional associations, Freedom of Information Act requests, student discipline hearings, professional liability (malpractice) claims, trust and estate litigation, and animal law.

Adam strives to understand each client’s business to help advance their legal and business interests. He helps his clients solve problems through advice and counseling, mediation, arbitration, and litigation in state and federal courts. He has experience representing plaintiffs and defendants at all stages of litigation, from temporary restraining orders and preliminary injunctions to summary judgment, arbitration hearings, bench and jury trials, and appeal.

As a member of the firm’s Cybersecurity and Data Privacy Practice Group, Adam is a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP-US) and member of the International Association of Privacy Professionals.

Before beginning his law career, Adam taught fourth grade as a Teach For America corps member.

  • Experience

    • Examined fact witnesses and cross-examined forensic accountant in successful arbitration concerning assets worth tens of millions of dollars in small business dispute.
    • Front Range Equine Rescue v. Vilsack, 844 F.3d 1230 (10th Cir. 2017). Successfully argued against appeal of order denying opposing party’s request to collect on injunction bond.
    • Deposed former officers and directors of failed bank in connection with investigation for negligence and breach of fiduciary duty.
    • Deposed lead inventor in Hatch-Waxman patent infringement case.
    • Deposed forensic psychologist in contested bankruptcy proceeding brought to dismiss the bankruptcy based on alleged bankruptcy fraud.
    • Briefed successful appeals in litigation to prevent initiation of commercial horse slaughter for human consumption.
    • Briefed successful motions for temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction in trade secret and post-employment restrictive covenant cases.
    • Briefed successful motions to dismiss business tort claims on behalf of professional service firm. See, e.g., Abrams v. McGuireWoods LLP, 518 B.R. 491, 504 (N.D. Ind. 2014).
    • Briefed successful application for preliminary relief in state court litigation, resulting in return of dog to client.
    • Defended multiple Chicago-area students in pro bono representations against attempted expulsion, both at expulsion hearings and through negotiated settlements.
  • Credentials

    Education

    • University of California - Berkeley - School of Law, J.D., 2011
      California Law Review, Member
      Order of the Coif
    • University of Wisconsin - Madison, B.A., Political Science and History, 2006, with comprehensive honors

    Bar Admissions

    • Illinois
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
    • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
    • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio

        Professional Memberships

        • American Bar Association
        • Chicago Bar Association
        • International Association of Privacy Professionals

        Professional Certifications

        • Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP-US)
      • Insights

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        Alert

        FinCEN Seeks Public Comment on Corporate Transparency Act

        On April 1, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) to solicit comments from the public on issues relevant to the implementation of the Corporate Transparency Act (CTA). The CTA was enacted into law as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021.

        News Release

        Diederich Named to Civil Rights’ Advocates Board of Directors

        Schiff Hardin LLP is pleased to announce that Partner Adam Diederich has been named to the board of directors of the Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights, a group of civil rights lawyers and advocates committed to securing racial equity and economic opportunity for all through pro bono legal representation.

        Alert

        Attorney-Client Privilege in Ownership Disputes: Facebook Shareholder Barred From Accessing Privileged Company Documents

        A recent Delaware court decision rejecting a Facebook, Inc. shareholder’s attempt to access the company’s attorney-client privileged documents concerning a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) investigation shows that, as we previously explained, it remains difficult in most jurisdictions for a shareholder to obtain its corporation’s attorney-client communications.

        Alert

        Death, Disability, Divorce, and Disputes: Know What Your Company’s Governing Documents Dictate in the Event of a Crisis

        2020 was an unprecedented year for business owners. It brought a pandemic, a deep recession, a civil rights movement, and civil unrest in cities across America.

        Alert

        Minority Shareholders: Understand Your Fiduciary Duties and How to Eliminate Them

        When acquiring shares in a corporation, minority shareholders often evaluate the profitability of the corporation, the value of their shares, and what protections are in place to shield them from wrongdoing at the hands of the controlling shareholders.

        Alert

        Attorney-Client Privilege in Ownership Disputes: Illinois Corporations and Other Jurisdictions

        This post explains the rules that apply to Illinois corporations and business entities organized in other jurisdictions.

        Alert

        Attorney-Client Privilege in Illinois Ownership Disputes: Protecting Privileged Documents

        This post explains steps that Illinois LLCs and their majority members can take to protect otherwise privileged communications from disclosure to minority members in advance of and during litigation.

        Alert

        Attorney-Client Privilege in Illinois Ownership Disputes: Accessing Privileged Documents

        Business divorces are often messy. Those who individually or collectively control a private business sometimes seek to force out owners of non-controlling shares.

        News Release

        Schiff Hardin Elects Four New Partners

        Schiff Hardin is pleased to announce the election of four attorneys to partnership, effective January 1, 2018.

        Other Publications

        • “A (Broad?) New NJ Encryption Requirement,” Schiff Hardin Insight (Feb. 27, 2015) 
        • “Seventh Circuit Reverses Decision for Reliance on Flawed Expert Testimony,” Expert Witnesses: News & Developments, American Bar Association Section of Litigation (Feb. 18, 2014)
        • “Trial Court’s Duty to Rule on Emergency Motions When Presented,” (co-author) CBA Record (Sep. 2011)
      • Citizenship

        Pro Bono Activities

        Adam is actively involved in pro bono legal work, including representation of students who face expulsion from school through the Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law’s Educational Equity Project, which named him the 2015 Educational Equity Project Advocate of the Year. In 2016, the Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law presented him with the Young Lawyer Pro Bono Award.

         

        Adam also has represented clients in divorce, custody, and child support matters through Schiff Hardin's Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Clinic, as well as criminal defendants and individuals seeking post-conviction relief.

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      Solving Disputes Among Business Partners and Owners

      This ongoing series will help owners anticipate potential problems when structuring their businesses and find solutions to issues that commonly arise among owners of privately held businesses, both before and during litigation. MORE