Biographical Information

Jonathan Merel is an experienced attorney who advocates for his clients in all family law proceedings, including settlement negotiations and trials. Jonathan founded The Law Offices of Jonathan Merel, P.C. in early 2009 after working for many years at another family law firm in Chicago. Through his hard work and unwavering dedication to his clients, Jonathan has quickly grown The Law Offices of Jonathan Merel, P.C. to become one of the elite family law firms in  the Chicagoland area.

Jonathan has a great deal of experience in obtaining favorable outcomes for his clients in multi-million dollar marital estates and contested custody suits (custody is now known as the allocation of parental responsibilities in the State of Illinois). His ability to settle heated divorces and custody disputes has gained him a great deal of respect from fellow attorneys and judges within the Chicagoland legal community. When settlement is not a viable or reasonable option, Jonathan’s experience as a zealous litigator in the courtroom has produced outstanding results for his clients.

Always committed to his clients and their causes, Jonathan’s philosophy is to build strong, trusting relationships with his clients, founded on compassion, sound legal strategy, and open and frequent communication. Known as a skillful and aggressive negotiator with strong tenacity, Jonathan has an impressive track record of protecting his clients’ best interests and helping them meet their legal goals.

After graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science in 1999, Jonathan received a Juris Doctor from Chicago-Kent College of Law in 2002. While at Chicago-Kent, he was on the Dean’s List and served as a law clerk at a family law firm in Chicago. This valuable, diverse, and hands-on work experience sparked Jonathan’s passion for helping others through the practice of family law.

Jonathan has received numerous awards and achievements as a result of his success.

Jonathan was selected as a Super Lawyer in Illinois for 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2017. Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high-degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The selection process is multi-phased and includes independent research, peer nominations and peer evaluations.

In 2015, 2016 and 2017, Jonathan was selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the field of Family Law.  Since it was first published in 1983, Best Lawyers® has become universally regarded as the definitive guide to legal excellence. Best Lawyers is based on an exhaustive peer-review survey. Over 52,000 leading attorneys cast more than 5.5 million votes on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas. Lawyers are not required or allowed to pay a fee to be listed; therefore inclusion in Best Lawyers is considered a singular honor. Corporate Counsel magazine has called Best Lawyers “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.”

In 2015, 2016 and 2017, Jonathan received the prestigious honor of being selected as a Leading Lawyer in Illinois by the Leading Lawyers Network; an award bestowed upon less than 5% of all lawyers licensed in each state.  

Jonathan was honored by the American Institute of Family Law Attorneys in both 2016 and 2017; being named as one of the 10 Best Lawyers in Illinois based on Client Satisfaction.  The American Institute of Family Law Attorneys is a third-party attorney rating organization that publishes an annual list of the Top 10 Family Law Attorneys in each state. Attorneys who are selected to the “10 Best” list must pass AIOFLA’s rigorous selection process, which is based on client and/or peer nominations, thorough research and AIOFLA’s independent evaluation.  In 2017, Jonathan received the Nation’s Top One Percent designation by The National Association of Distinguished Counsel; an award received exclusively by the top 1% of attorneys in the United States.

Jonathan has also provided his legal expertise to prominent national media outlets such as the Wall Street Journal and NBC’s Today Show. 

Jonathan is a member of the American Bar Association American Bar Association Family Law Committee, Illinois Bar Association, Chicago Bar Association, North Suburban Bar Association, and Lake County Bar Association.

Admission Dates & Jurisdictions

Illinois 2002


Chicago-Kent College of Law, J.D. 2002