Our Story

We know that the odds can seem stacked against you when you suffer an unexpected injury. With billions of dollars at their disposal and armies of attorneys on call, large companies and insurance carriers often have an outsized influence on lawmakers, the court system, and society as a whole. What chance can the average person have when the playing field is so uneven?

Fortunately, there is hope. For more than four decades, GWC Injury Lawyers has been leveling that playing field so that everyone can enjoy the same benefits under the law, regardless of how much they have or who they know.

This dedication to the rights of the everyday people of Illinois has been at the heart of our mission since GWC first opened its doors in 1978, when the late Michael B. Goldberg began a partnership with his law school friend Larry E. Weisman (retired). Both men’s backgrounds gave them a natural affinity for the little guy, with an especially steadfast commitment to labor unions. Michael was born to working-class parents who made him keenly aware of the challenges of the common person because of the inequities of corporate greed. Despite these humble origins, Michael was proud to be related to Supreme Court Justice Arthur J. Goldberg, who served as President Kennedy’s Secretary of Labor, acted as general counsel for the United Steelworkers of America, and helped consolidate the American Federation of Labor and the Congress of Industrial Organizations into the modern-day AFL-CIO. Larry’s family also had deep union roots. His grandmother was one of the first organizers for the Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union, and her stories of the struggles they faced to obtain fair wages and safe working conditions made a profound impression on him at an early age.

Soon after they entered the legal profession, Michael and Larry discovered that labor was seriously under-represented in Illinois. Like the brave family members who came before them, they decided to do everything they could to rectify this injustice, founding a law firm centered on serving injured workers throughout the state.

A few years later, they met a talented young law student whose dedication to the dignity of work was as intensely personal as their own. Louis C. Cairo knew firsthand the importance of organized labor, which made it possible for the son of an immigrant union carpenter/general contractor to have access to a higher education. Louis also worked in the construction trades himself throughout high school and college, giving him direct experience with all facets of the industry. As he began planning his own career in law, he knew he had to become a part of the aggressive, upstart firm that Michael and Larry created, one that took the fight to the powerful in the name of the powerless.

From his modest beginnings as GWC’s first law clerk, Louis grew to become one of the most respected trial attorneys in the practice of personal injury litigation, advocating fiercely for victims and their families who have suffered catastrophic injuries because of the carelessness of others. He is now the sole owner of GWC Injury Lawyers and extremely pleased to be working side by side with his two lawyer children, Deanna Cairo Arthur and Louis A. Cairo, who is GWC’s newest partner.

What started as a small two-person operation has grown into one of the premier personal injury and workers’ compensation law firms in Illinois, with more than $2.5 billion recovered in verdicts and settlements. GWC has championed the cause of clients who have been harmed in almost every type of situation, including those involving car, truck, and motorcycle accidents, workplace and construction negligence, medical malpractice, nursing home abuse, dog bites, defective products, and wrongful death. Our attorneys have received most of the major awards and distinctions available to legal practitioners in the state, including “Top Lawyers” from the Leading Lawyers Network, “Super Lawyers” and “Rising Stars” from Chicago Magazine, and “Top 100 Trial Lawyers” from the National Trial Lawyers. Though GWC Injury Lawyers has grown exponentially over the decades, our core purpose has never wavered. We remain devoted to helping the helpless and making sure that the voice of the individual never gets lost. With these values as its bedrock, it is no wonder that GWC has maintained such strong ties with organized labor since the firm’s inception. We have been honored with designations from the state’s largest unions for our efforts on behalf of workers of virtually every occupation who have sustained injuries in practically every circumstance imaginable. In fact, GWC has often been called “the construction accident law firm” because we have represented members of nearly all of the state’s major building trade unions. These unions count on us when a construction accident occurs because they have seen for themselves what our skilled attorneys can do.

Additionally, GWC takes great pride in serving as the Consultant Attorney (Abogado Consultor) for the Consulate General of Mexico in Chicago. In this capacity, the firm advises the city’s Mexican immigrant community on issues related to workers’ compensation and personal injury law. In standing with the hardworking residents of Illinois, from those whose families have belonged to the same union for generations to those who have just arrived on our shores, GWC Injury Lawyers is keeping alive the spirit of American labor that inspired the firm’s creation in the first place. We believe that the lifeblood of this great nation comes from the ones who help build it, from the laborers and tradespeople of the last century to the workers of every kind today. GWC will always strive to make sure that each person has the same protections under the law as the most well-connected titans of the establishment. If you have been injured because of someone else’s careless actions, rest assured that the personal injury and workers’ compensation attorneys of GWC Injury Lawyers will be here, ready to get you and your loved ones the justice you deserve.