Joan E. Steinman

University Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Professor of Law Emeritus

Professor Steinman received her bachelor's degree in philosophy from the University of Rochester and her law degree from Harvard Law School, where she served on the Harvard Civil Rights-Civil Liberties Law Review. She was admitted to the Illinois Bar in 1973 and practiced with the Chicago law firm of Schiff Hardin & Waite from 1973 to 1977, specializing in civil litigation.

Professor Steinman joined the faculty of IIT Chicago-Kent in 1977 and served as interim dean from February, 1990 through July, 1991. She has authored articles on standing doctrine, the associational privacy privilege in civil litigation, class actions, suits for money damages to vindicate First Amendment rights, pseudonymous litigation, law of the case doctrine, removal and remand, supplemental jurisdiction, the effects of case consolidation on litigants' procedural rights, appellate jurisdiction and other procedural issues. For many years, she was responsible for two volumes of the Wright, et al., Federal Practice and Procedure treatise, and co-authored a casebook on appellate courts.

Professor Steinman was the 1992 chair of the Association of American Law Schools Complex Litigation Committee of the Civil Procedure Section. She was an adviser on the ALI Federal Judicial Code Revision Project (1996-2004), and was a member of the ALI consultative groups on the Law of Aggregate Litigation, Conflict of Laws, and the Complex Litigation Project, among other ALI projects. More recently, she was elected an Honorary Member of the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, and is one of very few faculty members who enjoy that status. Professor Steinman also served on the executive committee of the AALS Civil Procedure Section, was appointed to the Seventh Circuit Advisory Committee on Circuit Rules, and was a master in the Chicago-Lincoln American Inn of Court. She became a member of the U.S. Supreme Court Bar in 2015. 

Here at Chicago-Kent, Professor Steinman was named a Norman and Edna Freehling Scholar in 1989 and a Distinguished Professor in 1998. She has earned the Dean's Prize for Excellence in Teaching, and received awards from the American Academy of Appellate Lawyers, the Chicago-Kent Moot Court Honor Society, the Chicago-Kent Student Bar Association, and IIT.

Professor Steinman taught courses in civil procedure, complex litigation, and appellate courts. Earlier, she taught contracts, federal courts, and First Amendment law.

Since retiring from her position at the law school, Professor Steinman has acted as an amicus curiae in several cases pending before intermediate federal courts of appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court, consulted about matters on which she previously wrote, and has judged moot court practice rounds for Kent students and in the IL competition. 


J.D., Harvard Law School
A.B., University of Rochester



Symposium, Federal Appellate Procedure -- Signed Opinions, Concurrences, Dissents, and Vote Counts in the U.S. Supreme Court: Boon or Bane? (A Response to Professors, Penrose and Sherry), 53 Akron L. Rev. 525 (2019)

Waiving Removal, Waiving Remand – The Hidden and Unequal Dangers of Participating in Litigation, 71 Fla. L. Rev. 689 (2019)

The Puzzling Appeal of Summary Judgment Denials: When Are Such Denials Reviewable?, 2014 Michigan State Law Review 895 (2014).

Appellate Courts as First Responders: The Constitutionality and Propriety of Appellate Courts' Resolving Issues in the First Instance, 87 Notre Dame Law Review 1521 (2012).

Claims, Civil Actions, Congress & the Court: Limiting the Reasoning of Cases Construing Poorly Drawn Statutes, 65 Washington and Lee Law Review 1593 (2008).

Shining a Light in a Dim Corner: Standing to Appeal and the Right to Defend a Judgment in the Federal Courts, 38 Georgia Law Review 813 (2004).

The Newest Frontier of Judicial Activism: Removal Under the All Writs Act, 80 Boston University Law Review 773 (2000).

Crosscurrents: Supplemental Jurisdiction, Removal, and the ALI Revision Project, 74 Indiana Law Journal 75 (1998).

The Effects of Case Consolidation on the Procedural Rights of Litigants: What They Are, What They Might Be, Part I: Justiciability and Jurisdiction (Original and Appellate), 42UCLA Law Review 717 (1995).

Section 1367: Another Party Heard From, 41Emory Law Journal 85 (1992).

Law of the Case: A Judicial Puzzle in Consolidated and Transferred Cases and in Multidistrict Litigation, 135 University of Pennsylvania Law Review 595 (1987).

Backing Off Bivens and the Ramifications of this Retreat for the Vindication of First Amendment Rights, 83 Michigan Law Review 269 (1984).

The Party Status of Absent Plaintiff Class Members: Vulnerability to Counterclaims, 69 Georgetown Law Journal 1171 (1981).

Search Professor Steinman's publications on


Appellate Courts; Appellate Procedure; Civil Procedure; Complex Litigation; Courts and Judges