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Chicago Litigation Blog

Certification Revocation Kills Appellate Jurisdiction

Share:The District Court giveth, and the District Court taketh away.  In Kenosha Unified School District No. 1 Board of Education v. Whitaker (per curiam) (slip op. Nov. 14, 2016), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit faced a somewhat unusual circumstance.  A transgender student sued his school district for denying him access to […]

Seventh Circuit: “Follow Form” Insurance Policy Does Not Allow Excess Insurer to Take Advantage of Arbitration Provision in Underlying Policy

Share:In insurance, a follow form endorsement is typically understood to mean that an excess or umbrella insurance policy incorporates the terms of another underlying insurance policy.  An excess carrier with such an endorsement might reasonably expect, then, that it could take advantage of an arbitration provision in the underlying policy.  Not so fast, the Seventh […]

In Federal Court, Supplementary Proceedings Under 735 ILCS 5/2-1402(c)(6) Require An Independent Jurisdictional Basis

Share:Even after a final money judgment is awarded, judgment debtors are not always willing or able to satisfy it.  Sometimes supplementary proceedings are required to obtain satisfaction of the judgment.  These supplementary proceedings can take the form of disputes with third-parties that may owe money to the judgment debtor (insurance companies, for example) and can […]

Seventh Circuit Holds that Service of Suit Clause in Insurance Contract Waives Right of Removal

Share:The Seventh Circuit recently weighed in on the meaning and effect of a “service of suit” clause in a reinsurance treaty.  In Pine Top Receivables of Illinois, LLC v. Transfercom, Ltd., 2015 WL 8780611, F.3d (7th Cir. Sept. 1, 2016), the Court held that a service of suit clause gave the insured the right to […]

Circumstantial Evidence Insufficient to Establish Causation in Premises Liability Claim

Share:The Illinois appellate court was recently presented with an interesting fact pattern that allowed it to consider the boundary between permissible inferences drawn from circumstantial evidence and impermissible speculation.  In Berke v. Manilow, 2016 IL App (1st) 150397, the appellate court held that the defendant in a premises liability claim was entitled to summary judgment […]

TCPA Class Actions and the Question of Adequacy – For Counsel and Plaintiff

Share:In Byer Clinic and Chiropractic Ltd. v. Kapraun, 2016 Il App (1st) 143733, a divided panel of the Illinois appellate court considered the class representative adequacy requirement under Illinois law in the context of a TCPA suit.  A TCPA class action was similarly the backdrop for the Seventh Circuit’s consideration of the class counsel adequacy […]

Plaintiff X: Orders Denying Leave to Litigate Anonymously Are Immediately Appealable

Share:There seems to be an increase in judicial decisions addressing a litigant’s right, if any, to use the court system without disclosing his or her name.  Perhaps this trend is inspired by people’s experience on the Internet, where one may interact with others, express opinions, and engage in all manner of transactions without unmasking oneself.  […]

Rule 2-619(a)(2) Motion to Dismiss May Constitute Arbitration Waiver

Share:The Illinois Appellate Court recently ruled that, where a party raises a substantive arbitral issue in a motion to dismiss pursuant to Illinois Code of Civil Procedure § 2-619(a)(2), that party has submitted to the jurisdiction of the court and waives its right to compel arbitration.  Watkins v. Mellen, 2016 IL App (3d) 2016. Albert […]

Seventh Circuit Rejects The Separate-Accrual Rule In Copyright Ownership Disputes

Share:The Seventh Circuit recently answered an important question about when suits under the Copyright Act accrue for purposes of its three-year statute of limitations.  See 17 U.S.C. § 507(b).  In Consumer Health Information Corp. v. Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Inc., No. 14-3231, 2016 WL 1534013 (7th Cir. April 15, 2016), the Court of Appeals held that the […]

Seventh Circuit Holds that Website Failed to Provide User Adequate Notice of Arbitration Clause

Share:The Seventh Circuit recently issued an important opinion for any business that conducts transactions through a website.  In Sgouros v. TransUnion Corp., No. 15-1371, 2016 WL 1169411 (7th Cir. March 25, 2016), the Court held that TransUnion’s website did not provide users with adequate notice of the arbitration clause in its “Service Agreement” to bind […]

Suit to Enjoin Corporate Dissolution and Suit for Fraud are Same Cause for Purpose of 2-619(a)(3) Dismissal

Share:The Illinois Code of Civil Procedure provides a mechanism for the circuit court to dismiss an action where there is “another action pending between the same parties for the same cause.”  735 ILCS 5/2-619(a)(3).  In Schacht v. Lome, 2016 IL App (1st) 141931, the appellate court considered whether the defendant’s prior suit to enjoin dissolution […]

Seventh Circuit Indicates Willingness to Revisit Causation Standard for ADA Claims

Share:Although it left the issue undecided, the Seventh Circuit recently noted that the 2008 amendments to the Americans with Disabilities Act may have altered its causation standard.  The case, Arroyo v. Volvo Group North America LLC, No. 14-3618, 2015 WL 5846595 (Oct. 6, 2015), was discussed by John M. Fitzgerald and Uri Abt in “The Bottom […]

Intermediate Standard of Review Applied to Deny Conditional Pre-Notice Class Certification Under FLSA

Share:In an article in the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, Jordan Wilkow discusses a recent case from the Northern District of Illinois that, for the first time in the Northern District, denied conditional pre-notice class certification under the Fair Labor Standards Act after applying an “intermediate” standard of review.

Circuit Court Lacks Jurisdiction to Review Arbitrator’s Ruling In Favor of Failed Bank

Share:John M. Fitzgerald and Uri Abt discuss a recent Illinois appellate court opinion interpreting the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA), the federal law governing claims against failed banks, in their regular column in the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin.  The appellate court held that the plaintiff’s failure to file an administrative action before the FDIC within […]

Illinois Supreme Court Distinguishes between Confidential and Privileged Information

Share:Do statutory confidentiality provisions mandate that information designated “confidential” is also non-discoverable?  No, the Illinois Supreme Court recently held in Klaine v. Southern Illinois Hospital Services, 2016 IL 118217.  Rather, “the confidential nature of information does not prevent it from being discoverable unless the plain language of the statute so provides.”  The Supreme Court’s ruling […]

Federal District Court Applies Newly Amended Rule 37(e)

Share:Magistrate Judge James C. Francis IV of the Southern District of New York recently granted, in part, a motion for sanctions that raised “significant issues concerning the reach of newly amended Rule 37(e) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the standard of proof governing spoliation, and the relief appropriate for destruction of electronically stored […]

Intradistrict Conflict on the Effect of Video Played for the Jury in the Courtroom in the Presence of Judge, Attorneys, and Defendant, after Commencement of Jury Deliberations

Share:Although not directly related to any codified evidence rule, it is important to be aware of three appellate court split decisions in the Third District resulting in intradistrict conflicts about the propriety of playing a video—at the request of the jury after jury deliberations had begun—in the courtroom in the presence of the jury, the […]

Appellate Court Considers Illinois’ Relation Back Rule After Krupski

Share:In their regular column in the the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, “The Bottom Line,” John M. Fitzgerald and Uri Abt discuss a recent a Illinois appellate court opinion that answered two certified questions about Illinois’ relation back rule in light of the United States Supreme Court’s decision in Krupski v. Costa Crociere S.p.A., 560 U.S. […]

Appellate Court Holds that Trial Is Needed to Determine Whether Commercial Dispute Must be Arbitrated

Share:The recent case of Sturgill v. Santander Consumer USA, Inc., 2016 IL App (5th) 140380, demonstrates that while most motions to compel arbitration pursuant to a written contract will be determined based only upon the allegations of the plaintiff’s complaint and the language of the contractual arbitration clause, there are times when more information is […]

Court’s Ruling that Trademark Plaintiffs Have Right to Jury Trial When Claiming Defendants’ Profits As Damages Leads to $54 Million Jury Verdict

Share:Judge Dow of the Northern District of Illinois recently denied a motion to strike a jury demand for trademark-related claims after holding that plaintiffs who claim an infringer’s profits as a proxy for damages have a constitutional right to a jury trial.  The subsequent trial resulted in a $54 million verdict in favor of the […]

Illinois Military Leave of Absence Act is Interpreted by a Court for the First Time

Share:A court has, for the first time, passed on employer liability under the Illinois Military Leave of Absence Act (“IMLOAA”), 5 ILCS 325/1.  See Bello v. Village of Skokie, No. 14 C 1718, 2015 WL 9582986, at *14 (N.D.Ill. Dec. 31, 2015). On the face of it, the Act’s requirements are straightforward.  First, a public […]

Can Former Minority Owners of an LLC Bring a Legal Malpractice Claim Against Company’s Law Firm?

Share:In Stevens v. McGuireWoods LLP, 2015 IL 118652 (Thomas, J.), the Illinois Supreme Court was called upon to decide whether former minority members of an LLC could bring a legal malpractice action against the LLC’s litigation law firm for allegedly failing to timely file a derivative action against the company’s former corporate law firm.  In […]