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Fern Trevino

Fern Trevino

Attorney Fern Trevino

Fern Trevino has earned the highest rating for legal ability and ethics from Martindale Hubbell, the highly respected attorney rating service. In 2015, The Law Bulletin Board ranked Fern among the top four women employment lawyers in Illinois and among the top 50 women lawyers in Illinois for individual consumers of legal services. Her peers have selected her as a Leading Illinois Lawyer every year since 1993. She has been featured in the Leading Lawyers – Women’s Edition and has been recognized as a SuperLawyer and a Top Lawyer. In 1997, Today's Chicago Magazine selected her as one of 100 Chicago women making a difference. In 2015, the Advisory Board of the Litigation Counsel of America (LCA) selected Fern to become a Fellow in the Trial Lawyer Honorary Society. LCA is a trial lawyer honorary society comprised of less than one-half of one percent of American lawyers. Fellowship in the LCA is highly selective and by invitation only.

The Chicago Bar Association's Speaker's Bureau has invited Fern to speak as a guest lecturer. She has appeared on radio and television programs to discuss employment law issues. In 1999, she served as a Faculty Member at the Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education.

Fern has practiced employment law since 1983. After law school, as an Assistant Corporation Counsel in the City of Chicago’s employment litigation department she primarily represented the Chicago Police Board in discharge hearings. In 1987, she accepted a position in the IRS Regional Counsel’s Office, where she represented the IRS in arbitrations and other administrative proceedings involving employment matters. In 1990, she moved to a boutique defense employment law firm where she represented employers in state and federal courts and before administrative agencies. In 1993, she founded her own firm, the Law Offices of Fern Trevino. Since that time, she has exclusively represented executives and employees. Since 1993, her firm has rejected all requests from employers for defense representation.

Whether she aggressively litigates, negotiates, or counsels behind the scenes depends on the client's goals and facts and the law. Her mission is to achieve a successful resolution for every client.

Within the employment law field, Fern concentrates in certain areas, including whistleblower actions, discrimination claims (based on gender, pregnancy, race, national origin, age, religion, disability and sexual orientation), sexual harassment, retaliation for having complained of discrimination (also known as retaliatory discharge), Family and Medical Leave Act claims, and employment contracts (hiring, severance, non-compete, and non-solicitation agreements).

Fern has extensive experience counseling senior executives and other professionals as well as salaried and hourly employees on various employment matters including difficult workplace issues. She understands that employees in transition require individualized, prompt service. For clients who require immediate assistance, Fern often makes herself available by phone or email during evening and weekend hours. She prides herself on helping clients make informed, well-reasoned decisions by guiding them through the available options, explaining the pros and cons of each option, and developing and implementing a strategic plan of action.

Most of the firm’s adversaries include multi-national and national corporations and large law firms. In addition to overseeing the firm’s cases, Fern mediates and negotiates on behalf of the firm’s clients. She is recognized among mediators and opposing counsel as a professional, firm, and tough negotiator.

Articles Written About Fern Trevino

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois, 1983
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 1983
  • Trial Bar, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 1990
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, 1992
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, 1998


  • Loyola University of Chicago, J.D., 1983; B.A., 1968.

Past Employment

  • Associate, Banta Cox & Hennessey, 1990-1992
  • Employment Law Attorney, Regional Counsel's Office, Internal Revenue Service, 1987-1990 (received merit
  • service awards, 1988 and 1989)
  • Assistant Corporation Counsel, City of Chicago, Employment Litigation Division, 1983-1987

Professional/Bar Association Memberships

  • National Employment Lawyer’s Association (Co-Chair, Programs Committee, 1997-1999)
  • National Employment Lawyer's Association, Illinois Chapter
  • Chicago Bar Association (Labor and Employment Law Committee & Speaker's Bureau)
  • National Association of Women's Business Owners, Chicago Chapter (Member, 1992-1999; Board of Directors, 1993-1995; Membership Retention Committee, Chair, 1993-1995; Member, Program Council, 1998-1999)
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