Heyl Royster

Bryan Vayr

Champaign, IL

Joined Firm in 2017

"Here's what four years of bagging groceries taught me about being a lawyer: anyone can do the job, but to do it well, look up and notice who you're helping." – Bryan Vayr

  • Graduate of University of Illinois College of Law, summa cum laude, Order of the Coif
  • Served as University of Illinois Law Review Managing Articles Editor
  • Recognized by the Clinical Legal Education Association for his work in the U of I College of Law Civil Litigation Clinic
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Bryan Vayr

Attorney in Champaign, IL

Oddly enough, four years of bagging groceries taught Bryan a lot about being a lawyer. Small acts can make a big difference, whether helping a customer on crutches load groceries into their car or taking time to talk after hours with a client who is losing sleep due to a lawsuit. It all starts with not letting the job's tasks get in the way of the job's purpose, which is to help someone. Then and now, Bryan's favorite part of any job is doing the little things to improve his client's day.

Bryan focuses his practice on civil litigation, with an emphasis on complex civil rights, governmental defense, and employment matters. Much of his practice entails defending government, law enforcement, educational institutions, and businesses in cases alleging civil rights violations in state and federal courts. From multibillion-dollar organizations and large state entities to small businesses and cities with only a handful of employees, Bryan has represented clients on various topics, including personnel decision-making and policies, wage payment issues, law enforcement practices, election conduct, complying with "sunshine" laws, and infrastructure issues. Having been involved in hundreds of lawsuits, Bryan is sometimes the first lawyer to whom his clients have ever spoken. He takes seriously his role in representing his clients and informing them about all aspects of a lawsuit.

Although Bryan loves reading the latest Fourteenth Amendment case law, he understands there is more to life than work. His daily highlight is enjoying family dinners with his wife and daughter. When time permits, Bryan plays guitar, bass, and piano with friends — loudly and perhaps with more enthusiasm than skill. 



J.D., University of Illinois, summa cum laude, Order of the Coif

B.A., University of Illinois at Springfield, Political Science and Legal Studies, magna cum laude

Licensure(s) and Admission(s)

State Courts of Illinois

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois

United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois

United States District Court for the Southern District of Illinois

Professional Affiliations

American Bar Association

Champaign County Bar Association

Illinois State Bar Association

Community Involvement

Women in Need of Recovery, Former Secretary


Law enforcement:

  • Frazier v. Mathews – Secured a defense verdict in a case where an inmate of jail died from overdosing on smuggled medications.
  • Gaddis v. Stearns – Secured a defense verdict in a case where police arrested an individual on the basis of an invalid protective order.
  • Mann v. City of Urbana – Secured defense verdict in a case where an individual alleged he was arrested and subjected to excessive force in retaliation for said individual’s First Amendment-protected speech against police officers.


  • Watts v. Methodist Medical Center – Secured defense verdict for an employer who was accused of violating the Americans with Disabilities Act by subjecting an employee to multiple fit-for-duty exams.
  • DCC Propane, LLC v. Grainco FS, Inc. – Successfully dismissed former employer’s effort to enforce a non-compete agreement.
  • Power Home Solar, LLC v. McDermott – Successfully secured judgment in favor of an out-of-state employer seeking to enforce a non-compete agreement.



“Access To Public Records,” Illinois Association of County Board Members and Commissioners (2023)

“Complying with the Illinois Freedom of Information Act (FOIA),” Illinois Association of County Board Members (2023)

Security Issues in the Emergency Department Setting,” Carle Hospital (2021)

Illinois Open Meetings Act and Freedom of Information Act,” Illinois Association of County Board Members – Government Leaders Training Webinar (2021)

Three Things That Will Always Help Your Case,” Illinois Association of County Board Members Seminar (2018)

The Open Meetings Act, explained,” Heyl Royster (2018)

Security Issues in the Emergency Department Setting,” Level I Trauma Center - Panel Member (2018)


Supreme Court Doubles Down on Qualified Immunity for Law Enforcement,” Illinois Defense Counsel Quarterly (2022)

It Can’t Be Politics: Seventh Circuit Offers a Timely Refresher on Political Firings,” Illinois Defense Counsel Quarterly (2021)

Supreme Court: Probable Cause Defeats a First Amendment Retaliation Claim . . . Except When It Doesn’t,” Illinois Defense Counsel Quarterly (2019)

“Of Chimps and Men: Animal Welfare vs. Animal Rights, and How Losing the Legal Battle May Win the Political War for Endangered Species,” University of Illinois Law Review (2017)


  • 40 Under Forty by Central Illinois Business Magazine, 2020
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