Attorney Profiles - Child:Larry kane

Larry R. Kane

Senior Counsel

Larry Kane is direct: "This is a hard business. I tell my clients that any time both parties can agree, the case is over. The difficult thing is getting them both to agree, and that always takes too long."

In practice almost 50 years, Kane takes a pragmatic view of his profession: "A lawyer is a legal salesman. We're selling our client's position to the other side and to the court. How do you sell something? You figure out what's most important to your client and what's most important to the other side."

He recalls a case in which he was representing the husband. "And I knew that no matter what happened, the wife wanted to keep the big, fancy house in Evanston. The husband had trouble letting go of the house. While the case was pending, we focused on the house's importance to her and got him so many more things that were much more valuable. In the end, he was very happy." He adds that even in cases that are successful, the results can be mixed. "In order to come to a fair agreement," he says with a chuckle, "everyone has to be a little unhappy."

Among his achievements, Kane was the leader in drafting landmark family law legislation for Illinois in 1991. Up to that point, there had been unrealistic and unattainable standards severely restricting the guidelines concerning maintenance. "Below I-80, ex-spouses didn't pay maintenance. There was a threshold that had to be met that was prohibitively difficult to achieve." The legislation that Kane co-authored changed the way maintenance is awarded, and clarified property settlement awards in family law cases.

Looking back on his career, Kane says he misses the standards of collegiality and courtesy that had prevailed in legal work. To counter this trend, he upholds the traditions he considers fundamental, both through his own work and through mentoring others.

"I love being a lawyer, despite everything, including opponents and clients who lie. If someone wants to play games, I know how to respond ... but I always try to do what I think is right." Kane explains one of his main motivations: "The kids suffer enough, no matter what happens in court, and I would like each case at least to go well enough for the parents to be able to put aside everything else for the sake of their children. My goal is to see both clients walk together down the aisle when their children marry."

Admitted to the Bar

1965, Illinois and U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois


University of Illinois, B.S., 1962

DePaul University College of Law, J.D., 1965

Professional Memberships

American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers: Fellow; Forensic Resource Guide Committee, Chair, 1995-1998; Certified List Committee, Chair, 1986-1988; Focus on Forever Committee, Member, 1998-2003

American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Illinois Chapter: President, 1986-1987; Board of Managers, 1980-1996, 1999-2005; Admissions Committee, 1988-1994, 1998-2009; Seminar Chair, 1997-1999, 2004

Chicago Volunteer Legal Services: Board of Directors, 2000-2006; Volunteer, 1994-present

Cook County Circuit Court: Domestic Relations Management Advisory Committee and Executive Committee, Member, 1986-1993; Calendar Management Subcommittee, Chair, 1986-1993

Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission of the Supreme Court of Illinois: Hearing Officer, 2002-present

Accomplishments and Publications

Nichols Illinois Civil Practice, Family Law Volume, Consulting Editor, 1999

Lecturer, Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education, Illinois State Bar Association and Chicago Bar Association, 1980-present

Listed in The Best Lawyers in America; Leading Lawyers; Super Lawyers; 100 Top Attorneys in Illinois

Named by Best Lawyers as 2016 Lawyer of the Year, Illinois

Named by Best Lawyers as 2016 Family Law Lawyer of the Year, Illinois

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