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Michael J. Kanute



Mike Kanute develops solutions for corporate and individual clients defending products liability, negligence, toxic tort, premises liability and other tort cases.

Mike serves as national counsel, national litigation counsel or national coordinating counsel for clients involved in major multidistrict litigation. He represents manufacturers whose products have ranged from tires to breast implants to factory-built fireplaces.

Mike also represents corporate and individual clients in warranty and commercial cases, contract and lease disputes and a variety of other litigation.

Past Experience

Before joining Faegre Drinker, Mike was a partner at Butler, Rubin, Saltarelli & Boyd in Chicago. Prior to Butler Rubin, he spent six years as a partner at Holland & Knight in Chicago.


Bar Admissions


Court Admissions

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan


Illinois Appellate Court, First District, Hon. Allen Hartman, 1990-1992


Loyola University Chicago School of Law
J.D. cum laude (1990)

University of Notre Dame
B.A. (1987)

Insights & Events

Other Perspectives
  • 2014 NITA Gulf Coast Regional Deposition Training Skills Program
    Faculty Member – New Orleans, April 2014
  • Arguing Against Exposure Pathways and Defeating the Causal Nexus to Injury
    ACI Chemical Product Liability Conference, Chicago, April 25, 2012
  • Consumer Fraud Claims: 'No Injury' Litigation Involving Trace Chemicals Where There Is No Proof of Harm Requirement
    ACI Chemical Product Liability Conference, Chicago, April 28, 2010
  • Legal Issues in Manufacturing: A 2009 Roundup and Expectations for 2010 — Product Liability Issues
    Faegre Baker Daniels CLE Conference, December 9, 2009
  • Avenues to Advancement
    Faculty Member, Communication Skills Workshop, MS JD's Third Annual Conference, Chicago, November 20, 2009
  • Construction Contracts — What You Need to Know Now
    Construction Expo, Chicago, 2008
  • Five Things to Consider When Designating a Rule 30(b)(6) Witness
    Corporate Counsel, July 2008
  • Document Creation in the Electronic Age – Remembering the Basics
    Corporate Counsel, October 2006
  • Sharing Provisions: The Hidden Trap in Protective Orders
    Corporate Counsel, August 2006
  • Recent Developments in Illinois Involving Appellate Procedure and Jurisdiction
    4 Appellate Law Review 58, 1992
  • Evolving Theories of Malpractice Liability for HMO's
    20 Loy. U. Chi. L.J. 841, 1989

Firm Blog Contributions

  • Faegre Drinker on Products – a blog addressing all things product liability that covers legal issues and developments of interest to product manufacturers and their employers

Leadership & Community

Professional Associations

  • American Bar Association
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Defense Research Institute, 2004-present

Civic Activities

  • Center for Disability and Elder Law — Practice Group Partners Committee; Mortgage Foreclosure/Mechanics Lien Section, Lead Partner
  • City of Geneva Anti-Smoking Legislation Task Force — Mayoral Appointment, 2007
  • USA Triathlon — Regional Athlete Development Coordinator, Mideast Region, 2007-10
  • Northern Illinois University — Triathlon Team, Head Coach

Firm Leadership

  • Board Member, 2020-23


  • Best Lawyers® — Personal Injury Litigation - Defendants, 2012-24
  • Illinois Leading Lawyers — Product Liability Litigation, Top Civil Defense Lawyers, 2015-19
  • Loyola University Law Journal — Executive Editor of Student Articles, 1989-90
Awards Methodology
No aspect of these recognitions has been approved by the highest court of any state.
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