Michael G. Horstman, Jr.

Michael G. Horstman Jr. joined Sorling Northrup in 2003. He concentrates his practice in real estate, business formation and transactions, general commercial law, taxation, and estate planning and has considerable experience in legal issues concerning the formation and operation of tax-exempt not-for-profit entities and trade associations. Prior to joining Sorling Northrup, Mr. Horstman served as Chief Counsel to Jane Addams Hull House Association, a large not-for-profit social service agency in Chicago. During and prior to his six years at Hull House, Mr. Horstman maintained a private practice in Chicago handling a wide variety of issues for individuals, charities, and businesses.

Through his work at Hull House and his work with the firm, Mr. Horstman has become experienced in dealing with the issues faced by tax-exempt organizations. He serves as general counsel to a variety of tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organizations and 501(c)(6) trade associations, assisting them with the day-to-day operational issues that arise. He also assists tax-exempt organizations with less common activities including reviews and revisions to governance documents; board issues including executive compensation, conflicts of interest, and private inurement; reorganizations, affiliations, mergers, and other corporate restructurings; and taxation and other regulatory filing issues. Mr. Horstman frequently advises clients on the formation and registration of new tax-exempt entities and organization of subsidiaries. He has experience dealing with the IRS and other government entities on regulatory reporting and compliance.

Since joining the firm, Mr. Horstman has provided legal counsel to many commercial and residential real estate developers including serving as lead attorney on major commercial developments. He is experienced in guiding clients through the process of selling or acquiring real estate. He regularly counsels commercial developers on real estate holding entities and the tax ramifications of the various entities. Mr. Horstman is knowledgeable about zoning and annexation matters and is familiar with the legal and political process of obtaining the required approvals. He has experience with public and private financing options for commercial developments, having represented developers obtaining conventional bank and equity participation financing along with the creation of and issuance of bonds for Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Districts, Special Service Area Districts, and Business Districts.

Providing legal and business guidance to new and existing businesses also makes up a significant portion of Mr. Horstman’s practice. Working with business clients allows him to use his business background and experience growing up around and working in several family-operated businesses to advise large and small businesses on both the legal and the business concerns they may encounter. Mr. Horstman advises businesses on issues that arise during start-up of a new venture, while operating a successful business, when considering expansion, when raising capital, when buying or selling a business, and when planning to pass the business along to the next generation. Mr. Horstman works with owners of businesses in the retail, wholesale, and service industries including restaurants, franchise operators, local family-run operations, financial service operations, and multi-state wholesale operations. Mr. Horstman employs his experience and skill for his business clients assisting them in navigating regulatory issues including securing and maintaining liquor and professional licenses; in obtaining financing including conventional loans, private financing, equity participation financing, or private equity offerings; in handling the employment issues that inevitably arise; and in contending with the variety of other issues that arise when operating a business. Mr. Horstman is a resource for his business clients providing legal and business advice to assist with the day-to-day issues they encounter in operating a business and an experienced counsel to guide them through the less common issues that may arise.

Mr. Horstman co-authored a chapter in the IICLE on Illinois Business Law entitled “Taxing Considerations in Entity Selections.” Mr. Horstman has lectured at seminars for attorneys, clients, and various other groups on a variety of subjects including tax-exempt entities, 1031 tax-free property exchanges, ethics in real estate transactions, the effects of a tenant’s bankruptcy on a landlord, estate planning with retirement accounts, negotiating physician employment agreements, confidentiality in a social service setting, and a variety of other business and real estate related topics.

Mr. Horstman is a Springfield native who graduated from Sacred-Heart Griffin High School in 1990. He graduated from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana with a degree in Finance and Economics (B.A. with distinction in Finance, 1994) and received his Juris Doctoris from Washington University in St. Louis (1997). Mr. Horstman is licensed to practice in Illinois and is admitted to the bars of the U.S. District Court for the Northern and Central Districts of Illinois.

Mr. Horstman is a member of the American, Illinois State, Chicago, and the Sangamon County Bar Associations.


  • University of Illinois, Urbana, IL - B.A. with distinction in Finance, 1994
  • Washington University School of Law, St. Louis, MO - J.D., 1997

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois
  • U.S. District Court, Central and Northern Districts of Illinois

Practice Areas