Please let me share my true and personal “legal story.”
Like most individuals, I typically avoid attorneys. However, through my personal and business experiences I’ve learned that attorneys are not equal in their skills nor their compassions. Some are just professionally better and get the job done correctly.
It was in the summer of 2014 when my wife and I reluctantly agreed we’d try to assist a personal friend of mine who had fallen on hard times. We offered him an opportunity to introduce a new product of my mine using a traditional crowdfunding program. My direct involvement in his campaign would be minimal and I would communicate via phone when possible. The product was already manufactured and my friend would run the program with logistical support of my loyal team.
During the months leading to this decision, I was living at the hospital 24/7 caring for my wife of 30+ years who was failing in her battle against recurrent ovarian cancer. My friend was fully aware of my distractions. Honoring her final wish, my beloved wife quietly passed at our home on a warm mid-September night with our adopted daughter gently holding her mother’s hand. Only those who have lost a devoted spouse can comprehend the sudden void in my life.
Concurrent with my personal loss, my friend’s marketing efforts were successful and with the support of my logistical team, they garnered a six figure return during the record setting crowdfunding campaign.
As the Christmas season approached, something terrible and unforeseen occurred. My friend stated that all of the earned moneys were his and that he now owned 50% of my company. I was stunned. Although no promises were made, pledged, or discussed, his declarations were followed by a lawsuit just weeks after my wife was laid to rest.
Be assured it was very difficult to immerse myself into the spirt of the Christmas season without my devoted wife and trusted business partner beside me. As of this writing, I still cannot not fathom why a “friend” was demanding more than $30-million in exchange for our good faith effort to reverse his personal plight.
Enter attorney Shawn Collins: As the pending Christmas holidays neared, and through a trusted colleague, I was introduced to attorney Shawn Collins. Through grieving tears, I shared my legal challenge with Mr. Collins who was sitting across the table taking copious notes as he quietly asked questions. Thereafter, he agreed to accept my legal case. Unknowingly and now with clear hindsight, my Christmas gift that year was the connection I made with Shawn Collins.
Although an out of state trial was likely, I quickly learned Shawn was an extraordinarily fierce litigator and accomplished courtroom trial lawyer with unrivaled legal skills. While Shawn and his legal team meticulously compiled a very detailed chronology of my story, I discovered Shawn was also a compassionate gentleman who listened to my abundant questions and concerns. In lay terms he patiently explained how or why something would impact the outcome of my case. There was always a comfortable and open line of communication.
During the time that followed, Shawn and his legal team systematically dismembered the lawsuit allegations levied against me. The case settled without going to trial.
Although I still grieve for my beloved wife, Shawn’s legal skills caringly managed this very difficult chapter in my personal and business lives. I consider Shawn as a personal friend along with his talented colleagues who I also consider as trusted advisors that support my growing entrepreneurial endeavors.
Because of Shawn Collins, I can honestly say my personal “legal story” does have a happy ending.
First and foremost, Shawn Collins and Ed Manzke of The Collins Law Firm should be in everybody's favorite list on their cell phones. With Shawn orchestrating and Ed being the driving force in getting their clients heard, they together are able to prepare a case that will achieve good results. They are very compassionate and thorough, and because of this, the end result is good for their clients. They keep you informed every step if the way, so that you always know the progress of your case. We feel very fortunate to have worked with Shawn and Ed because of their professionalism. We highly recommend them.
My father recommended The Collins Law Firm to me after watching Shawn Collins and Ed Manzke at trial representing Lisle residents against Lockformer. For years, he told us courtroom tales about Shawn and Ed, citing their incredible skill as trial lawyers and how they put the huge Lockformer legal team to shame.
So when my son was the victim of a wrongful death, they were my first and only choice. I can't say enough to truly express how grateful I am to The Collin's Law Firm for all that they did for me and my family. This amazing team advocated for me in my darkest moments, surpassing my expectations in every way. Their sensitivity and compassion, combined with skill, competence and effectiveness, was admirable. This is an honorable law firm with integrity, which is something that's hard to find in this day and age. There was never a moment when I wasn't incredibly confident in this group of lawyers.
I will be forever grateful to Shawn and Ed.
We've worked with Rob and the banking team for several years. He handled over 100 million dollars of commercial loans with us, including several complicated eight-figure loans, and Rob always works out all the complications and gets us closed on time. His loan documentation department is well organized and always delivers.
Ryan Kastner, Vice President, Heartland Bank & Trust
Rob has represented our Bank in a variety of matters for over 10 years. He has been instrumental to the success of this Bank during that time. The Collins Law Firm banking team are excellent attorneys for real estate sales, loan documentation, and, of course, banking litigation.
Jan Schultz, President, First National Bank of Brookfield
My company was recently unfairly sued in a significant real estate matter. Rob and his team did a terrific job defending me in the matter all the way through trial, which we won. Rob is outstanding in helping guide my business strategies. My experience with The Collins Law Firm is that they are dedicated to solving my problems.
Peter Bray, Owner, Massage Envy (local franchises)
The Collins Law Firm (Shawn Collins) represented us in a complex Mass Tort case. Shawn's ability to organize our legal positions and clearly communicate our position to the many parties involved and to the courts was a huge part of our success! We could not have had better representation!
Shawn Collins is a true advocate for your cause. I recall sending Shawn a note during our litigation that said, 'I can pay you for your time, but I can't make you care. Thank you for caring about our case with such passion!
One of the things that makes Shawn and his team so great is their ability to listen. They truly listened to our concerns and represented us in the most appropriate manner. Shawn's communication skills are also second to none - this is essential when pleading your case! Shawn and his team at the Collins Law Firm are masters at creating the optimal strategy to represent you!
Eric J. Muehlbauer, MJ, CAE
CEO - North American Spine Society
Burr Ridge, IL
I have known Shawn Collins since 1990 when we first worked together at Mayer Brown. Shawn was my mentor, guiding me through my first pro bono case: a special education matter for a family seeking appropriate educational services for their son. Shawn was an inspiration to me (I had just graduated law school) - he was thorough, confident, poised, and cared so much about the case!
Shawn eventually opened his own practice, and he and I always stayed in touch and have worked on multiple matters together. Shawn likes to fight for the good guy - he takes the David vs. Goliath cases - and he wins! Shawn shows dedication and passion - along with superior analytical, writing, and speaking skills - and he has an impeccable instincts about the law and the players in each case. Shawn has an unmistakable presence, whether in the boardroom or in the courtroom.
I have worked both for and with Shawn and The Collins Law Firm on various commercial and employment litigation matters. I have also consulted with him on special education matters (my area of concentration). Shawn is able to learn about any area of law quickly, he grasps the practical as well as theoretical issues presented, and he cuts to the chase to obtain the best results in the quickest manner and at the lowest cost to his clients.
There is no lawyer I would recommend more highly than Shawn and his Firm.
My family was struck by an uninsured drunk driver. The resulting claims presented multiple complex legal issues. Ed Manzke assisted us with the matter from day one through settlement of the claim. We are confident Ed's expertise and knowledge assisted us in maximizing our settlement amount. I would recommend Ed and The Collins Law Firm on any legal matter involving personal injury claims.
P.B. Du Page County, IL
I have been a trial lawyer practicing in Chicago for over 35 years. I was a government trial lawyer, ran my own law firm for 20 years, and am currently a partner with a 700 lawyer firm. I have tried cases with, and against, some of the finest lawyers in the country. I have had the good fortune to work side by side with Shawn, as co-counsel, on many cases - difficult cases - for the past 17 years. We have been together at trial and in literally hundreds of meetings, hearings, depositions, conference calls and the like. Together with our clients, we have successfully navigated cases involving important issues, including serious health issues. I have seen Shawn in virtually every situation that we, as trial lawyers, confront, and I can say, without reservation, that I have never known a more passionate, committed, skilled, effective, selfless and honest advocate. Every client is Shawn's most important client. Because I know the depth of his skill and his commitment, I regularly refer clients to Shawn. I regularly seek his counsel. If I, personally, ever needed a trial lawyer...Shawn would be my lawyer."
Norman B. Berger
I have had the privilege of knowing Shawn Collins for some 15 years and have admired him for his intelligence, discerning insight and integrity. Shawn has distinguished himself and his practice as leaders in business, environmental and personal injury law. He has shared eye-opening perspectives on business, leadership and human nature with me and my clients, and I have relied on his wisdom and skilled advocacy, both for my business and my family. He is an extraordinary attorney whom I recommend without reservation.
Deborah Newman Roe
I was more than fortunate to have The Collins Law Firm and Shawn Collins represent me, as a minority shareholder, in our family-owned business dispute. Shawn defended and preserved my position within the company, saving my career, our business and my family's future.
It became clear early on that Shawn has a number of very unique skills. He has a special ability to both analyze and articulate complex issues while providing creative and very effective strategies at the same time. He is also very perceptive, with exceptional insight.
With so much at stake for me and for my family, Shawn demonstrated a full commitment to us with his high energy and empathy unique to lawyers. His knowledge, diligence and commitment won our case and provided me the opportunity to move forward and become the sole owner of the business.
As I look back on those challenging times, I remind myself how blessed we were to have Shawn at our side. He was a counselor whose instincts I trusted implicitly, and he was there for us in every way possible. We simply could not have asked for more, and I continue to rely on him as a trusted advisor today.
On a very personal level, I also respect Shawn's commitment to his family and community, his volunteerism and mentoring, and I am in awe of his endless energy. My family and I will continue to thank The Collins Law Firm and Shawn Collins for the balance of our lives.
We owe Shawn a debt of gratitude we can never repay.
Jay and Chris Fregeau, Owner/CEO and Corporate Advisor
We were incredibly satisfied with our experience with The Collins Law Firm. We worked closely with Ed Manzke and found that he had a personal touch and truly got to know us in addition to being knowledgeable and effective in his field. The caring and individual attitude helped us tremendously throughout the entire process and we always felt like our case was in safe hands. We would highly recommend The Collins Law Firm for both its stellar work and dedicated employees.
Ed Manzke and the staff at The Collins Law Firm did a wonderful job handling my personal injury claim. Ed provided me with the direction and support I needed and kept me updated during the process. I know I was in good hands with Ed and his staff and highly recommend The Collins Law Firm!
I can completely recommend The Collins Law Firm, P.C. I am very familiar with The Collins Law Firm, P.C. and the work of its attorneys. I have hired them to handle matters for me personally as well as corporate matters for my organization. As an attorney myself, I have high standards, and TCLF has exceeded these each time. Their legal work is thorough, well-researched, knowledgeable and honest.