Christopher E. Celichowski

Christopher E. Celichowski

Managing Shareholder

Christopher Celichowski represents clients in a variety of matters involving Minnesota workers’ compensation, subrogation, employer liability, general liability, dram shop, employment, and OSHA defense matters. A shareholder with the Firm since 1993, Mr. Celichowski heads O’Meara, Leer, Wagner & Kohl, P.A.'s Workers Compensation Section, one of the largest Workers Compensation practice groups in the state.

He began his career with the Firm in 1987 as a law clerk.   Mr. Celichowski served as the Firm's managing shareholder from 1997-2000, 2004-2006, interim managing shareholder 2012, and again from 2017-2019. He lectures extensively on workers’ compensation, workers’ compensation subrogation, employer liability and dram shop law to a wide variety of audiences, including claims professionals, trade and industry groups and attorneys. He litigates cases in civil, appellate and administrative law courts. He lectures extensively and has prepared seminar materials for workers’ compensation, workers’ compensation subrogation, employer liability and dram shop audiences.

His peers have voted him a Minnesota "Super Lawyer" and "Rising Star" in Law and Politics magazine.  In 2018 and 2019 he earned distinction among “Minnesota’s Best Lawyers”.  His professional colleagues consistently give him an "AV" rating through the LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings signifying very high to pre-eminent legal ability and very high general standards. He lives with his wife, Bonnie Sons, in Shorewood, Minnesota.

  • University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point, 1984, summa cum laude, Chancellor’s Leadership Award, WSUC Scholar Athlete (UWSP)
  • University of Minnesota Law School, J.D., 1988, Dean’s List, Managing Editor - Journal of Law and Inequality and William O. Douglas Award for Excellence in Constitutional Law
  • Minnesota, U.S. District Court - District of Minnesota
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
  • Minnesota State Bar Association
  • Hennepin County Bar Association
  • International Society of Primerus Law Firms
  • Speaker, Strategies for Defending Workers’ Compensation Traumatic Brain Injury Claims, Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Symposium, May 2, 2018.
  • Joint Speaker and Co-Author, Long Term Care Damages: Intersection Collision – When Workers’ Comp and Civil Litigation Collide, Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association Trial Techniques Seminar, August 17, 2017.
  • Speaker, Investigating Suspected Medical Clinics: Anatomy of a Medical Mill, CEU Institute, May 2, 2017.
  • Speaker, How to Prevent Fraud and Abuse, CEU Institute, February 7, 2017.
  • Speaker, Advanced Long-Term Prevention and Management of Permanent Total Disability Claims, CEU Institute, May 3, 2016.
  • Speaker, Obesity's Impact on Treatment and Return To Work, webinar and in person presentation, CEU Institute, September 23, 2015 and October 12, 2016.
  • Speaker, What Is or Is Not Considered  ‘Employment' Under the Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Law?, Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Symposium, May 13, 2015.
  • Speaker, Workers’ Compensation Defenses and Injuries, CEU Institute, March 17, 2015.
  • Speaker, Identifying and Stopping the Potential Runaway Train: Proactively Controlling Your Most Difficult Workers’ Compensation Claims, OLWK Client Seminar, March 5, 2014.
  • Speaker, Closing Difficult Cases: Dealing with Difficult Claimants, CEU Institute, August 2, 2012.
  • Speaker, Chiropractors in Minnesota Workers’ Compensation Cases:  Foundations of Care, History of Compensability, Defenses to Claims and Fraud, CEU Institute, May 3, 2011, Maple Grove, MN.
  • Speaker, Defense Perspective on WC Law & Rules and Rehab as a Defense Attorney Sees It, presentation to Minnesota Rehabilitation Association, 2011 Spring Conference, April 21, 2011       
  • Faculty, “Workers’ Compensation Law & Practice” CLE seminar presented by Sterling Education Services, 11/17/2010, and Speaker Workers’ Compensation Settlements and Hot Topics in Minnesota Workers’ Compensation
  • Seminar moderator, Breaking the Cycle of Prolonged Passive Modalities, Speaker Application of Minnesota Workers' Compensation Treatment Parameters to Soft Tissue Injury CasesMay 2007, Sponsored by Woodlake Medical
  • Co-author, Recent Developments in Minnesota Dram Shop Law, Vol. 30, No. 2,  William Mitchell Law Review, 613-645 (2003).
  • Author, Development of Naig and Reverse - Naig Settlements, Feb. 2001, Minnesota Defense Lawyers Association, Mid winter conference, author and speaker.
  • Author, Racial Discrimination Under 42 U.S. § 1982: Proof or Perceptions? Shaare Tefila Congregation v. Cobb, Law and Inequality: A Journal of Theory and Practice, vol. V, No.1 (May 1987)
  • Johnson v. A Touch of Class Painting, slip. op. (WCCA July 23, 2018)                            
  • Callaway v. McDonald’s Restaurants of MN, slip. op. (WCCA April 29, 2013)                 
  • Raine v. Lil Rascals Daycare et al,  slip op. (W.C.C.A. Feb. 7, 2010)                                          
  • Kahl v. Benton County et al, slip op. (W.C.C.A. May 26, 2009)                                                
  • Jensen v. Aqua Dynamics et al, slip op. (W.C.C.A. Sept. 12, 2006)                                        
  • Hugill v. Benton County, 64 W.C.D. 220 (W.C.C.A. 2004)                                                              
  • Ruether v. State of Minn., Mankato State Univ., 455 N.W.2d 475, 477, 42 W.C.D. 1118, 1121 (Minn. 1990)