John F. Zabriskie



John F. Zabriskie, partner and litigation lawyer with Foley & Lardner LLP, has more than 30 years’ experience litigating complex commercial matters, including health care matters, class actions (including product labelling cases) trade secrets, and freedom of information act matters. He has tried cases — to juries, the bench, and arbitrators — in federal courts, state courts, and arbitration hearings around the country. He has been identified by The Legal 500 US as a leading trade secrets lawyer.

Health Care and Complex Commercial Litigation

John has extensive experience representing health care companies in disputes with their clients, network providers, and suppliers. He also frequently represents clients in complex commercial litigation cases involving class actions arising under state consumer protection laws and the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, breach of contract, fraud, and other business torts. Representative matters include:

  • As lead trial counsel, successfully defend health care company during a month-long arbitration hearing in which the health care company’s client sought $250 million in breach of contract damages
  • Defend health care company in numerous disputes with health care providers over network termination and payment recoupment
  • Represent large prescription drug purchaser in several disputes with drug manufacturers
  • Defend food manufacturers and retailers against numerous claims that product labels were false and misleading 
  • Represents clients in multiple industries in connection with arbitration provisions. 

Representative Trade Secret and Freedom of Information Act Experience

John counsels clients on trade secret protection and represents clients in contested proceedings to protect their trade secrets. He frequently assists clients whose trade secrets and confidential information is the subject of a public disclosure request under freedom of information laws. Representative matters include:

  • Represented major software company in a case involving alleged misappropriation of trade secrets and copyright infringement of source code; obtained injunction prohibiting further development or sale of competitor’s product
  • Represented health care company in obtaining opinion from a state supreme court that key information in the client’s state contract was exempt under the state’s public information act
  • Successfully represented health care company—frequently on an emergency basis—in numerous FOIA and “reverse-FOIA” cases, obtaining rulings that commercially sensitive information in government contract was exempt from disclosure
  • Counsel companies on protecting from public disclosure information in public contracts or subject to compulsory reporting


John received his law and undergraduate degrees from the University of Michigan (J.D., cum laude, 1984; B.A., high honors, 1981).

Admissions and Professional Memberships

Mr. Zabriskie is admitted to the bar in Illinois, and is admitted to practice before (and is a member of the trial bar of) the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois and the U.S. Courts of Appeal for the Seventh Circuits.

Selected Publications and Presentations