Stephen M. Murphy


  • Office Contact Info
  • Biography

    Stephen M. Murphy focuses his practice in the area of business litigation, with a particular emphasis in insurance law and professional liability. Steve’s practice encompasses trial and appellate work in state and federal jurisdictions. He represents a diverse clientele, including large businesses, professionals and individuals.  

    Steve’s experience as an insurance agent prior to going to law school, provides him with a unique perspective for handling coverage matters and bad faith claims, as well as defending insurance brokers or agents.

    Steve has handled all phases of litigation, including claim investigation, discovery, motions for summary judgment, mediation, trial and appeals. Steve frequently authors articles for various publications on a range of topics addressing issues within his practice areas, which keeps him abreast of new developments in the law.

    Steve values efficiency. In order to increase his value to clients, he successfully pursued certification by the Claims & Litigation Management Alliance as a Litigation Management Professional.

    When he is not spending time with his wife and daughter or practicing law, Steve can be found working with cattle on the family farm. 


    • Missouri
    • Illinois
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Western Districts of Missouri
    • U.S. District Court, Northern and Southern Districts of Illinois
    • U.S. District Court, Kansas


    • Claims & Litigation Management Alliance (“CLM”)
    • Federal Bar Association, St. Louis Chapter
    • State Bar of Missouri
    • State Bar of Illinois
    • The Lawyers Association of St. Louis
    • The Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel
  • Practice Areas
  • Representative Experience

    Representative Experience

    • Defended the seller of a facility in a $3.5 million lawsuit filed in Cook County, Illinois, by the property’s purchaser seeking damages for an alleged diesel fuel leak and soil/water remediation cost.
    • Gonzalez v. TIG Indemnity Company n/k/a StarStone National Insurance Company, 22-CV-04066-WJE, 2023 WL 3807050 (W.D. Mo. June 3, 2023): summary judgment for TIG Indemnity Company, finding a no-fault automobile policy issued in Florida was not required by Missouri’s Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law to provide coverage for the other drivers’ bodily injuries for an accident occurring in Missouri.
    • American Family Mutual Insurance Company v. Vein Centers for Excellence, Inc. and St. Louis Heart Center, Inc., 912 F.3d 1076 (8th Cir. 2019): affirmance of summary judgment in favor of American Family.  In addressing an issue of first impression, the Eight Circuit held the district court properly rejected the tort claimants’ contention the $75,000 threshold had not been met because no one claim against the named insured exceeded $75,000. The proper measure of the amount in controversy consisted of the anticipated costs to defend the Vein Centers and potential amount to indemnify the Vein Centers for all claims asserted by all plaintiffs in the underlying class action lawsuit.  The unanimous 8th Circuit also held that testimony about the insurer’s custom and practice of mailing notices to its insureds about policy changes established the TCPA exclusion had been timely added to the policy, barring coverage for the TCPA claim asserted in the underlying class action case.
    • Berry v. Ulrich Hereford Ranch, Inc., et al., 17-2109-JTM, 2017 WL 3130580 (D. Kan. July 24, 2017): dismissal of plaintiff’s claims alleging fraud and negligent misrepresentation for lack of personal jurisdiction.
    • Howard v. Eaton Corp., 16-0055, 2016 WL 6651592 (W. Va. Nov. 10, 2016): affirmance of summary judgment for a manufacturer, in a suit alleging that the manufacturer’s product was inherently dangerous, and that the manufacturer breached an implied warranty and a duty to warn.
    • Defended an insurance company against a lawsuit asserting claims for alleged code upgrade costs resulting from a ruptured water pipe and for vexatious refusal to pay.  The insured voluntarily dismissed the lawsuit after completion of preliminary discovery.
    • Stoddard Equip. Co., Inc. v. American Safety Indem. Co., et al., 6:13-cv-03271-JFM, 2013 WL 6255387 (W.D. Mo. Dec. 4, 2013): dismissal of insured’s declaratory judgment action seeking a defense and indemnity under a commercial general liability policy.
  • Publications & Presentations


    • Instructor, CLM Claims College for the School of Professional Lines in 2019-2023
    • Panel Presenter, Insurance Law Seminar, Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel
    • Speaker, Insurance Coverage Institute: Springfield, Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education
    • Speaker, Proving and Defending Claims, National Business Institute's Insurer, Adjuster, Agent and Broker Liability: A-Z Seminar


    • Contributor, "Survey of 2022 Insurance Law Cases," The Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel, IDC 2022 Survey of Law
    • Denial of Liability vs. Uninsured Motorist Coverage: One of These Things is Not Like the Other, Illinois Defense Counsel's IDC Quarterly, Volume 32, Number 2 (Third Quarter 2022) 
    • Contributor, Survey of 2021 Insurance Law Cases, The Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel, IDC 2021 Survey of Law
    • Co-Author, When Substitutions Go Wrong, CLM Magazine (April 2022)
    • Co-Author, Majority of Courts Applying Illinois Law Have Not Found Coverage for Claims Arising from COVID-19, Illinois Defense Counsel's IDC Quarterly, Volume 31, Number 3 (Third Quarter 2021)
    • Contributor, Survey of 2020 Insurance Law Cases, The Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel, IDC 2020 Survey of Law, Volume 10
    • Co-author, Illinois Court Becomes the Latest to Conclude Labor Cannot be Depreciated in Determining Actual Cash Value When Policy is Silent, The Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel's IDC Quarterly, Volume 30, Number 4 (November 2020)
    • Contributor, Survey of Insurance Law Cases, The Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel, IDC 2019 Survey of Law, Volume 9
    • ­­Co-author, Insurance Law Update, The Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel's IDC Quarterly, Volume 29, Number 3 (September 2019)
    • Co-author, Consumer Protection Acts and Professional Liability, DRI’s The Voice (August 14, 2019)
    • Co-author, Expanded Duties: What an Insurance Professional Should Know Before Making Promises, Insurance Journal (November 19, 2018)
    • Co-author, Missouri winds of change? New laws hold promise for insurance companies, Westlaw Practitioners Insight Insurance | Journal Insurance (Thomson Reuters, March 16, 2018)
    • Co-author, Bad Faith and Extra-Contractual Liability in Missouri – It’s Not Just for Bodily Injury Claims Anymore, CLM Magazine (November 2017)
    • Additional Things to Know About Being an Insured Under Another’s Liability Policy, The Illinois Association of Defense Trial Counsel, IDC Quarterly, Volume 27, Number 2, (2017)
  • Education


    J.D., magna cum laude, Southern Illinois University School of Law

    • Member of the Southern Illinois University Law Journal – Served on the Board of Editors and co-authored, Survey of Illinois Law: Civil Procedure, with a practicing attorney.

    B.S., Agricultural Economics, University of Illinois System