Oh no, you gave me 3 fantastic reasons that don't help me at all!
1. I do like NYU over Chicago for the location. Hyde Park kinda blows in my opinion and I think commuting from downtown Chicago is too far (others may disagree). Manhattan has so much to offer. Coming from Berkeley I would have to move to either place.
2. I already have a PhD. This is the last degree my fiancee will let me obtain before we have kids. I think she would shoot me if I tell her I am signing on for an additional year for an MBA
3. I want to do IP litigation, which goes along with the science background. PI doesn't make sense for me.
Thanks for the insight though.
Let me try looking at this the other way around.
The only reason I personally would pick Chicago over NYU is if I was dead-set on clerkships or academia, where they still have the edge. Since you're looking into IP litigation, it doesn't sound like that would matter much.
Don't know if you're looking to move back West Coast afterward, but from the little I know about IP Law the hubs seem to be NYC, DC, and Silicon Valley. NYU would be a lot closer to 2 of those than Chicago and Chicago wouldn't be close to any. I don't know much about their specific IP programs to comment at all.
Finally, both schools will give you fantastic opportunities, and I'm not trying to say Chicago is on a decline, but NYU has had an upwards trajectory in prestige/rankings/placement for more than a decade now, while Chicago has been mostly steady (admittedly there isn't much room to move up at this level) and even gone down a bit. I don't see either of them dropping out of the "CCN class" of law schools, but I really think NYU is building an amazing program. I'm not much of a law geek yet to comment on specific names, but they're poaching top faculty from Harvard, Yale, Columbia, and Chicago even into the recession when lots of other schools are scaling back on hiring due to smaller endowments. If I had to pick between NYU and Chicago as far as rank/prestige goes over the next decade I'd go with a decisive edge towards NYU, though I'm obviously biased.
I know you're pretty sold on the location already, but if your fiancee is going to be living with you I think she'd enjoy it a lot more in NYC over the next 3 years than in Chicago.
Finally, all the cool kids are going to end up at NYU. Don't you want to be one of the cool kids?