Matt D. Basil is a partner in the firm's Litigation Department. He is regularly called upon by Fortune 500 companies for help with a wide array of commercial disputes and class actions, particularly complex contract, antitrust, financial and fraud litigation. He has tried a number of cases in federal and state courts and represented clients in numerous arbitration proceedings. 

Matt also advises public and private corporations on internal investigations, board matters, and employment issues, among other matters. He served as one of the leaders in the representation of the Board of Directors of United Airlines in connection with the investigation of the so-called “Chairman’s Flight.” Matt also maintains an active pro bono practice, which has included a range of civil and criminal matters.

Matt is recognized by Chambers USA among the leading practitioners in the area of General Commercial Litigation in Illinois. A client previously reported to Chambers that Matt “is an excellent litigator who can explain complex matters to clients" and "he is well prepared, patient, and courteous to all in the courtroom." Other clients have reported that Matt "has good trial skills" and that his “strengths are his organization and thoroughness."


Prior to joining Willkie, Matt was a partner at another major law firm.

  • Lawdragon 500 Leading Litigators in America (2024)
  • Chambers USA - General Commercial Litigation (Illinois) (since 2022)
  • Crain’s Chicago Business’ Notable Litigators and Trial Attorneys (2023)
  • The Legal 500 United States – Labor and Employment - ERISA Litigation (since 2022)
  • The Legal 500 United States – Dispute Resolution - General Commercial Disputes (since 2022)
  • The Legal 500 United States – Corporate investigations and white-collar criminal defense (2023)
  • Economic Club of Chicago Member
  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago
    Member, Corporate Board of Directors
  • Leadership Greater Chicago - 2011 Fellow
  • Thomson Reuters – Business and Commercial Litigation in Federal Courts (Fifth Edition) – Crisis Management (2021)
  • Recent Developments in Fraud Investigations and Litigation Including Ponzi Schemes, Fraud and Corruption Matters,” Duff & Phelps 2017 General Counsel Symposium, November 3, 2017

Matt handles a wide array of commercial disputes and internal investigations for Fortune 500 companies, with particular emphasis on complex contract, financial and fraud litigation. His representative matters include*:

  • Representation of a large publishing client in a $90 million qui tam action brought under the False Claims Act.
  • Representation of an affiliate of a major telecommunications provider in a civil RICO claim brought by the affiliate, where the telecommunications provider purchased the affiliate for $1.3 billion following a two-week bench trial.
  • Representation, including at a week-long preliminary injunction hearing, of a global consulting company against a competitor’s efforts to obtain injunctive relief barring the consulting company from selling a product.
  • Representation of a global company in a significant internal investigation following notification from the United States Department of Justice.
  • Representation through trial of a large, international client in a multi-million dollar lawsuit involving claims for both damages and injunctive relief in connection with the mass resignation of numerous employees across multiple of the client’s offices.
  • Representation of a major telecommunications company in a nine-figure arbitration hearing involving multiple breach of contract claims brought by a former independent contractor of the telecommunications company.
  • Representation of a global retailer in a series of class action antitrust lawsuits.
  • Representation of a large, international client in a class action alleging breaches of fiduciary duty and seeking damages related to a multi-billion dollar defined benefit plan.
  • Representation of the supplier of a large, international home goods company in a multi-million dollar matter in which home goods company sought both damages and injunctive relief against the supplier.
  • Representation of a start-up telecommunications company in trials before multiple state regulatory commissions in matters initiated by a competitor.
  • Representation, including at trial, of a slot machine manufacturer in a civil trial arising out of damages suffered in connection with Hurricane Katrina.

* Matt advised on these matters prior to joining Willkie.



Loyola University Chicago School of Law, J.D., 1997 University of Illinois, B.S., 1994

Bar Admissions


Court Admissions

United States Court of Appeals, 7th Circuit, 2021 United States District Court, Southern District of Illinois, 2021 United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois, 1997 United States District Court, Northern District of Illinois (Trial Bar), 2009 United States Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit, 2014 United States District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin, 2008 United States Court of Appeals, 5th Circuit, 2009