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Rick Godfrey

Quinn Emanuel

Mr. Godfrey, a litigation partner in the Chicago office of Quinn Emanuel, has been described as an “an exceptional trial lawyer” and “stellar example of outside counsel,” having an “extraordinary, encyclopedic knowledge of the law,” “who relishes the challenge and can be counted on to deliver a first-rate product every time.” (Chambers 2017, 2006, 2008, 2011)   “The classy stalwart … has excelled at representing corporations at the trial and appellate level in all types of complex cases,” (Lawdragon 500 Hall of Fame, 2017), including in some of the nation’s largest, most high-profile litigation matters.  In addition, Mr. Godfrey routinely advises senior management and corporate Boards regarding litigation strategy, including crisis and risk management.

At Quinn Emanuel, Mr. Godfrey serves as Chair of the Complex Multidistrict Litigation (MDL) practice group.  Prior to joining Quinn Emanuel, Mr. Godfrey served as a litigation member of Kirkland &Ellis LLP’s Global Management Executive Committee from 1999 through 2015, having reached his maximum term limit.


  • MDL 2543: In re General Motors LLC Ignition Switch Litigation (S.D.N.Y.): Lead outside counsel representing GM in the thousands of individual plaintiff product liability claims and the more than 100 consolidated class actions arising out of the millions of vehicles recalled during 2014 for various safety defects. The litigation has involved claims by more than 7,000 personal injury and death claimants, the economic loss claims of over 15 million vehicle owners or lessees, and claims implicating the Bankruptcy Court’s Sale Order in the Old GM bankruptcy proceedings (S.D.N.Y.). After seven years of litigation, the vast majority of claims — over 99% — have been resolved, either on summary judgment, at trial, or by settlement.
  • A Leading Property and Casualty Insurance Company v. Revival Chiropractic, No. SC22-735 (Florida Supreme Court 2022) (Representing insurance company on appeal to answer a certified question of the 11th Federal Circuit Court of Appeals arising out of an adverse judgment interpreting Florida’s Personal Injury Protection statute; oral argument held March 8, 2023); Revival Chiropractic LLC v. A Leading Property Casualty Insurance Company, 2022 WL 1799759 (11th Cir., June 2, 2022)


  • Boston University School of Law (J.D., magna cum laude, 1979)
    • Boston University Law Review: Note & Case Editor
    • 1998 – “Silver Shingle Alumni Award” for “Distinguished Service to the Law School
    • 2006–2008 – Annual Fund Chairman for the Law School
    • 2010-2019 — Chair of the Law School Campaign, Vice Chair of The Campaign for Boston   University
  • Augustana College (B.A., magna cum laude, History and Political Science, 1976)
    • Phi Beta Kappa