Brian W. Bulger - Cozen O

Brian W. Bulger

Listed in Best Lawyers since 2005

Brian was selected as one of the Best Lawyers by U.S. News inaugural survey of Best Law Firms in 2010 and Meckler Bulger Tilson Marick & Pearson received the highest possible national “first tier” ranking of its employment and insurance law practices.   Additionally, Brian has been named by the National Law Journal as one of the nation's Best Litigators in Employment Law.

For over 30 years, Brian has advised and represented employers on all aspects of the employment relationship, including individual and class discrimination litigation; union representation and grievance avoidance; collective bargaining; arbitration cases before federal and state courts, agencies and arbitrators; wrongful termination litigation; whistleblowing, retaliation, non-competition, contract and pay equity cases; affirmative action and compliance matters; and general employment advice, training and counseling.

Admitted to Practice 

  • Illinois (1977)
  • United States Supreme Court (1980)
  • United States Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit (1993), Seventh Circuit (1977), Eighth Circuit (1992)
  • United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois (1977)  
Work History
  • Meckler Bulger Tilson Marick & Pearson LLP (1994 – Present)
  • Katten Muchin Zavis LLP (1987– 1994)
  • Pope, Ballard, Shepard & Fowle (1977 – 1987)


Georgetown UniversityAB 1972Georgetown University Law CenterJ.D. 1977
Illinois Bar AssociationNational Employment Law InstituteAnixter Center for the Rehabilitation of Persons with DisabilitiesUniversity of Chicago Booth School of Business

Case History

U.S. Supreme Court Amicus Brief — Brian filed an amicus brief in a 2013-2014 Supreme Court case regarding Presidential Senate recess appointment powers and interpretation of Fair Labor Standards Act's "clothing" exemption under collective bargaining agreements.   

Brian also appeared before the Supreme Court as amicus counsel for the Illinois State Chamber in Oubre v. Entergy Operations, Inc.
Nationwide Class Action for Major Financial Services Company — Brian was co-counsel in nationwide class action for major financial services company in successfully defending against class certification by female managers alleging pay and promotion discrimination
Presented National Association's Challenge to Hospital Bargaining Unit Rules — Brian presented national association’s challenge to hospital bargaining unit rules promulgated by the National Labor Relations Board and obtained temporary restraining order and permanent injunction against National Labor Relations Board regulations defining health care bargaining units.
Defended Professional Sports Team in Arbitration and Court Proceeedings — Brian successfully defended professional sports team against attempts to invalidate player contract by national association in arbitration and court proceedings.
Negotiated Plant Shutdown and Workforce Contraction Agreements — Brian negotiated a plant shutdown and workforce contraction agreements in connection with construction of a new $500 million facility for a major U.S. company. 

Client Comments

"Brian is one of those rare lawyers who has a comprehensive understanding of both labor and employment law, and brings wisdom and judgment to bear on every matter on which he works, big and small. Moreover, his advocacy skills are outstanding."

"Brian Bulger is on my "go-to" list of attorneys -- I would not think of using any other attorney in his area of expertise. I personally have had the privilege of working with Brian for almost a decade, and without a doubt, he is the best in his field."

-Edward Almeida
Vice President, Legal Affairs
United States Sugar Corporation

"Brian Bulger is a very savvy advisor with a deep knowledge of employment law. He has a good eye for strategy and is an excellent negotiator."

-Alex Liberman
Medline Industries, Inc.

"Brian is truly an expert in his field."

"Brian Bulger is the hardest working man in Labor and Employment. He is always available, always listens, and always offers practical guidance."

"Brian Bulger is an outstanding management-side labor and employment attorney. He is among the most competent attorneys with whom I work and I would trust him in any context (NLRB proceedings, trying an employment case, meeting with my trustees, etc.)."

Office Location

123 North Wacker Drive, Suite 1800
Chicago, IL 60606
United States

Practice Areas

Employment Law - Management
Labor Law - Management

Other Information

Gender: Male