Michael Csar partners with clients to develop, finance and invest in real estate projects, and he provides general corporate and business counsel to help clients structure and implement new business strategies. Michael represents developers, investors and lenders in real estate transactions and large private and publicly traded companies on business matters. He is particularly experienced advising health care, nonprofit and education stakeholders undertaking strategic initiatives.

Real Estate Investment, Development and Finance

Michael crafts specialized structures to finance the real estate development and investment needs of clients. He structures public-private partnerships, multiparty tiered financings, equity and debt restructurings, and equity participation financings. He represents lenders, borrowers, developers and real estate users in strategically negotiating and structuring contracts, agreements and financing terms that suit client needs. Michael has provided legal counsel on many prominent real estate transactions, including representing the lead lender in the then-largest single-building financing in Chicago and a publicly traded national real estate investment trust.

Representative Experience

  • Representation of developer and managing company in the development, financing and operation of major city convention center in a structured private/public partnership
  • Counsel to equity partner in multi-tiered venture for the development and financing of a 500-unit luxury residential high-rise in downtown Chicago
  • Counsel to national family investment and operating interests, including: establishment of family management corporation; unification of disparate family interests into partnerships and limited liability companies; internal and external financings; acquisitions and joint ventures
  • Representation of developer in mixed-use office and residential high rise in downtown Chicago, with private subdivision of office and residential portions; negotiation and restructuring of cash flow and equity participation financing
  • Representation of principal owner/master developer in development of 40-acre mixed-use urban planned unit development, including design and drafting of master private development rights agreement, master private covenants and restrictions, and public/private arrangements for the establishment and control of public open areas
  • Representation of lead lender in the then largest single building financing in Chicago, both in the multi-party, tiered initial financing and in the subsequent equity and debt restructuring utilizing an innovative trust structure
  • Counsel to a publicly traded national REIT in acquisitions, contribution/exchange transactions, joint ventures and financings

Business and Corporate Representation

Michael advises corporations looking to implement growth strategies on an international scale. Clients rely on him to help secure financings, execute recapitalizations, complete strategic reorganizations and seamlessly implement other business strategies that advance their goals.

Representative Experience

  • Special counsel to an international business consulting company, including with regard to the strategic reorganization of the company and international affiliates
  • Representation of an international professional service organization in more than a billion dollars of financings through U.S., European and other international sources
  • General corporate counsel to offshore insurance company for association of professional service entities; representation of company in recapitalization and restructuring of arrangements with insureds
  • Representation of publicly traded professional services company in the development and administration of philanthropic and estate planning share transfer program during restricted period following initial public offering

Health Care, Educational and Nonprofit Experience

Michael applies his business and real estate savvy to serve health care, educational and not-for-profit institutions. Under his guidance, prominent hospitals have developed and expanded new facilities for research and patient care, major universities have financed new student housing, and not-for-profit health care providers have formed strategic alliances with public universities.

Representative Experience

  • Counsel to nationally prominent specialty care hospital in development of new million square foot hospital in downtown Chicago academic medical center
  • Representation of public university in the real estate aspects of a strategic alliance with a major non-profit health care provider, including conveyance of land and operating covenants covering 60 acres of the parties’ adjoining medical school and hospital campuses
  • Counsel to not-for-profit hospital in development of a shared research center with the medical school of a private not-for-profit university
  • Representation of Big Ten university in corporate reorganization and governance matters of specialized subsidiaries
  • Counsel to a not-for-profit senior living facility company, with health-care related operations, including in joint ventures, ground leases, sales and acquisitions
  • Representation of state universities in development and financing of on-campus student housing projects in ground lease structure with private not-for profit developer and operator
  • Representation of Girl Scouts council in negotiation of amalgamation with other councils into largest council in the United States
  • Representation of urban university in development planning and construction of its new downtown Chicago campus building, including academic and residential uses


Bar Admissions



Yale Law School
J.D. (1977)

University of Cambridge
M.A. (1974)

Yale University
B.A. summa cum laude (1972)

Leadership & Community

Professional Associations

  • American Bar Association, Section on Corporate, Banking and Business Law and Section on Real Property, Probate and Trust Law
  • Lambda Alpha International

Civic Activities

  • Magnificent Mile Association — Co-chair, Project Review Committee
  • Chicago Central Area Committee


Awards Methodology

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