When looking for a trusted sounding board for advice, an effective writer, or a persuasive oral advocate, clients and colleagues alike turn to Rachel Sifuentes. Her critical listening and honest insights, combined with her authenticity and passion, make her a fierce legal mind wrapped in a well-spoken, dignified package. Rachel learned how to command a courtroom from the best seat in the house—the one next to four federal judges, first as a judicial extern, and later as a law clerk.
Rachel’s practice encompasses a diverse range of areas, including Commercial Litigation, Class Actions, Insurance Litigation, Intellectual Property, and White Collar Defense, Investigations and Compliance. She has appeared in state and federal trial and appellate courts around the country, practicing from both Chicago and San Francisco. Whether taking a deposition, negotiating settlements, writing complex briefs, or arguing motions, Rachel thrives on confronting knotty problems and resolving thorny issues. No matter where you are, you have a strong advocate with Rachel on your side. And if you are looking for a recommendation for the tastiest California cuisine, or the rockingest live music venue in Chicago, she has you covered there too.
Hon. Barbara A. McAuliffe, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California (2015-2019)
Hon. Stanley A. Boone, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California (2016-2019)
Hon. Sheila Finnegan, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (2014-2015)
Judicial Extern, Hon. Elaine E. Bucklo, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (2008)
- Represents major insurers in class actions seeking certification of statewide classes in multimillion-dollar disputes, particularly regarding claim payment and claim handling practices.
- Represented bus and truck parts manufacturer in patent infringement litigation, successfully establishing prosecution estoppel during claim construction.
- Defended the intellectual property rights of a preeminent index provider, up to and including a successful opposition to a petition for certiorari in the United States Supreme Court.
- Involved in numerous internal investigations for government agencies and municipalities, private companies, and non-profit organizations, providing risk assessments and recommendations, and advising on local, state, and federal statutory and regulatory compliance.
- Successfully defended Fortune 500 national manufacturer and distributor of household items in multiple patent infringement suits, including negotiating a favorable settlement on the eve of trial in a “rocket docket” jurisdiction.
- Achieved early termination of probation for convicted federal defendant, including by helping her rebuild family relationships and obtain gainful employment.
EducationNorthwestern Pritzker School of Law, J.D., 2010
Associate Editor, Northwestern University Law Review
Virgil B. Day Merit Scholarship Recipient (3 years)
Public Service Star Award Recipient
Claremont McKenna College, B.A., Religious Studies, 2004
Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
American Bar Association
Hispanic National Bar Association
Honors & AwardsLawyers of Color Hot List of Outstanding Minority Attorneys Under 40 (2013)
Rachel is deeply committed to community service, including by devoting her legal acumen to providing pro bono legal services. Since Rachel was a law student, she has worked with the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law. Rachel was part of the legal team for Maurice Patterson, who served eight years behind bars for a murder that he did not commit before he was exonerated. Rachel was also part of the legal team for Jason Strong, who was wrongfully convicted of murder, and served fifteen years before being exonerated. Rachel has also donated hundreds of hours of pro bono legal assistance through Chicago Volunteer Legal Services.
Outside of the courtroom, Rachel also served on the Board of Directors of the California Women’s Storybook Foundation, an organization dedicated to helping incarcerated women maintain relationships with their children through reading. She is also a proud mentor of several students interested in pursuing legal careers through a program run by her undergraduate college.