Michael Y. Scudder
Michael Y. Scudder, Jr. concentrates in commercial litigation and white collar crime, focusing on accounting and tax-related matters.


Representative matters in which Mr. Scudder has been involved include:

  • numerous accounting firms in connection with accountant’s liability, independence and tax matters, and related litigation and regulatory investigations by the SEC, PCAOB, Department of Justice, and Internal Revenue Service;
  • numerous corporations or their board of directors or executive officers in internal investigations and government investigations before the SEC, Department of Justice, and state attorneys general;
  • the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in a range of matters arising out of past academic irregularities;
  • Toyota Motor Corporation and Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. in the defense of individual and class action lawsuits arising from allegations of economic loss from alleged incidents of unintended acceleration complaints; and
  • individuals and corporations in tax controversy matters.

Mr. Scudder leads Skadden’s accounting practice, which provides integrated litigation, regulatory and transactional legal services to major accounting firms.

Before joining the firm in 2009, Mr. Scudder served in the White House as general counsel of the National Security Council under President George W. Bush from 2007-2009. Prior to that senior role, he provided legal advice on national security matters at the U.S. Department of Justice.

From 2002 to 2006, Mr. Scudder was an assistant U.S. attorney in the Southern District of New York, where he tried numerous cases and argued appeals in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. He served as a clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy and for Judge Paul V. Niemeyer of the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. Prior to law school, Mr. Scudder worked in public accounting at Ernst & Young. He is a Registered CPA in Illinois.

The BTI Consulting Group included Mr. Scudder in its 2013 BTI Client Service All-Stars report for providing outstanding client service. He was named to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs Emerging Leaders Class of 2010. In January 2010, Chicago Lawyer magazine featured Mr. Scudder in a profile titled "A Midwestern Man with National Experience." In 2016 Mr. Scudder was featured on the news show "Chicago Tonight," discussing presidential transitions.

Additionally, Mr. Scudder actively participates in various pro bono and community activities. In 2014, Mr. Scudder was recognized at the U.S. District Court’s 15th Annual Awards for Excellence in Pro Bono and Public Interest Service for his contributions in helping people in need of assistance before the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.



  • J.D., Northwestern University School of Law, 1998 (editor-in-chief, Law Review)
  • B.B.A., St. Joseph's College, 1993


  • Illinois
  • U.S. Courts of Appeals for the Second, Sixth and Seventh Circuits
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Ohio


  • Registered Certified Public Accountant (Illinois)


  • Law Clerk, Anthony M. Kennedy, U.S. Supreme Court
  • Law Clerk, Hon. Paul V. Niemeyer, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • Lecturer in Law, University of Chicago Law School, 2013-present
  • Adjunct Professor of Law, Northwestern University School of Law – Trial Advocacy, 2009-present
  • Auditor, Ernst & Young LLP

Michael Y. Scudder

Partner, Litigation; Accounting; Government Enforcement and White Collar Crime