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Russell E. Greenblatt

Chicago Office

Russell E. Greenblatt concentrates his practice in employee welfare benefit plans and vehicles used for the funding of such benefits, such as voluntary employees' beneficiary associations (VEBAs) and Internal Revenue Code §115 trusts. Before joining the firm in 1980, Russell served as an attorney-advisor with the Employee Plans and Exempt Organizations Division of the Office of Chief Counsel to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in Washington, DC. He was the principal author of the IRS regulations on VEBAs.

Because of Russell's particular experience with respect to welfare benefit programs, Katten serves as special benefits counsel to many Fortune 500 companies and governmental entities, providing services including design, documentation and implementation of employee welfare trusts as well as representation of employers and trusts before the IRS and Department of Labor (DOL) in audits, ruling requests and litigation. Clients remark that Russell "understands our business needs and takes a practical approach to helping solve everyday issues" and that he "delivers quick analysis and guidance so we can move forward quickly with resolution" (U.S. News – Best Lawyers® "Best Law Firms").

He is a frequent author and lecturer on the subject of welfare benefit plans and related funding vehicles, including VEBAs and IRC §115 trusts. He has spoken before the American Bar Association, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, New York University Tax Institute and University of Southern California Tax Institute. Russell's work has been published in Taxes, Taxation for Lawyers, The Journal of Taxation and Benefits Law Journal and he serves on the Editorial Advisory Board of Benefits Law Journal, for which he authored the quarterly column "Federal Benefits Developments" for many years. He has testified before the Congressional Ways and Means Committee and the IRS on pending benefits legislation and regulations. He served as an adjunct faculty instructor for The John Marshall Law School's LLM in Employee Benefits Program.

Russell has taken postgraduate coursework at the Georgetown University Law Center and the Internal Revenue Service.

Shown below is a selection of Russell’s engagements.


Super Lawyers, Illinois, 2007–2018
Best Lawyers in America, 2011–2019

American College of Employee Benefits Counsel

American College of Employee Benefits Counsel, Fellow
AV Preeminent Peer Review Rating by LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell
Russell E. Greenblatt


  • JD, Northwestern University School of Law, cum laude
  • BS, Indiana University, magna cum laude

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois


Super Lawyers
Illinois, 2007–2018
Best Lawyers in America

American College of Employee Benefits Counsel

AV Preeminent Peer Review Rating by LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell
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  • American Bar Association
  • American College of Employee Benefits Counsel
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