John L. Barger – Member

 John L. Barger joined Craig & Craig in 1984. He is a graduate of Charleston High School, Eastern Illinois University and the University of Arkansas School of Law in Fayetteville. He grew up on a farm in southern Coles County, Illinois.

He has been selected by his peers as a Leading Lawyer in Illinois. 

He is a member of the American Bar Association, Illinois State Bar Association and the Bar Association for the Federal District Court for the Central and Southern Districts of Illinois. He is a past President of the Coles-Cumberland Bar Association.

He is President of Janesville Cemetery, an Illinois Not-For-Profit Corporation. Janesville Cemetery is located in southern Coles County, Illinois. He also volunteers time to the Cumberland County Pet Connection. The Pet Connection is an organization that rescues dogs from the Cumberland County pound on or before their death day and finds homes for them. He has also donated many hours of time as a volunteer coach for both boys baseball and girls softball in Mattoon, Toledo and Greenup, Illinois. He is a former Board member and former President of the Neal Foundation. The Neal Foundation is a charitable organization supporting the Coles and Cumberland County areas.

His published decisions include Unzicker v. Kraft Food Ingredients Corporation, 203 Ill. 2d 64 (2003)(application of 735 ILCS 5/2-1117); Cincinnati Insurance Company v. Chapman, 181 Ill. 2d 65 (1998)(constitutionality of the Judicial Redistricting Act); Frank v. The Industrial Commission, 276 Ill. App. 3d 214 (4th Dist., 1995)(procedure for a workers’ compensation appeal); Brown v. R.R. Donnelley & Sons Company, 272, Ill. App. 3d 94 (4th Dist. 1995) (whether employee handbook becomes part of the contract of employment); and City of Marshall v. City of Casey, 177 Ill. App. 3d 1065, (4th Dist., 1989)(application of theory of equitable contribution). He has also participated in a number of other appeals that have resulted in Supreme Court Rule 23 Orders or non-published decisions. He has been involved in dozens of appeals to the Illinois Industrial Commission and subsequently the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission.

His practice areas include general civil litigation, real estate law, elder law, estate planning, probate and municipal law.

He has had an article written about him in Leading Lawyers magazine. Click here to read this article.


Practice Areas



  • University of Arkansas, J.D., 1983
  • Eastern Illinois University, B.A., 1980



  • 1984, Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Central and Southern Districts of Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
  • United States Supreme Court



  • Coles-Cumberland Bar Association (President, 2007-2008)
  • Illinois State and American Bar Associations
  • The Seventh Circuit Bar Association
  • Bar Association for the Central and Southern Districts of Illinois

Born: Mattoon, Illinois, August 1, 1958


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