Publications

Illinois Bar Journal
Articles From Helen W. Gunnarsson

Proposed Medicaid eligibility regs for long-term care recipients draw criticism By Helen W. Gunnarsson April 2011 Lawpulse, Page 174 Lawyers raise concerns about proposed regulations that they say will not help older clients and their families.
What judges want By Helen W. Gunnarsson April 2011 Lawpulse, Page 174 You'll make your judge happy - or at least less unhappy - if you learn some of the unwritten rules that vary by type of case presented and by region.
Can civil partners hold property as tenants by the entirety? By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2011 Lawpulse, Page 118 The consensus among leading ISBA and other real estate practitioners appears to be "yes." Now that Governor Quinn has signed the Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act into law as PA 96-1513, lawyers across the state are considering the statute's effect on specific aspects of their practices.
Civil engineers’ duty of care defined by contractual obligation By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2011 Lawpulse, Page 118 Where the contract provided for "replacement" of a bridge deck, the defendant engineer had no duty to make improvements that might have saved lives, the high court said.
Gimme shelter By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2011 Lawpulse, Page 118 A look at the legal issues public and private animal shelters face.  
Hiring How-Tos, Firing Fundamentals By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2011 Article, Page 130 Recruiting employees and letting them go are both fraught with legal pitfalls. Here's how you can help your clients and your own firm avoid HR missteps.
“I’m worried my child might hurt someone” By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2011 Lawpulse, Page 118 What do you tell clients who fear that someone they know and love might pose a threat to himself or others? The news of the shooting of an Arizona congresswoman and 18 others, including a federal judge and a nine-year-old girl, who died, and the arrest of an apparently mentally disturbed unemployed 22-year-old for the acts, horrified all who heard it.
Supreme court: med-mal statute of repose limits implied indemnity claims By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2011 Lawpulse, Page 118 In other words, don't wait more than five years to file your counterclaim, as the co-defendant hospital did in Uldrych v VHS of Illinois, Inc.
Are courts cracking down on refusals to answer requests to admit? By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2011 Lawpulse, Page 66 At least one lawyer thinks he sees a trend. Requests to admit are powerful pretrial tools, as every litigator knows. But many courts are reluctant to enforce supreme court rules specifying that requests must be answered or deemed admitted and that wrongful denials trigger attorney-fee awards.
Change to DUI law would limit court involvement in MDDP process By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2011 Lawpulse, Page 66 No longer will a court hearing or order be required for issuing a monitoring device driving permit if a new bill is signed into law.
“He Remembers His Roots” By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2011 Article, Page 76 A former legal aid lawyer and sole practitioner from rural beginnings settles into the role of Illinois' chief justice.
Mind the gap: Illinois taxes estates over $2 million By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2011 Lawpulse, Page 66 Illinois' new estate tax kicks in at $2 million, not $5 million like its federal counterpart. That creates some estate-planning challenges for Illinois residents.
Motion(al) intelligence By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2011 Lawpulse, Page 66 Motions, particularly motions to stay and to strike, are tools every appellate lawyer should know how and when to use.
Plan for administering your digital estate By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2011 Lawpulse, Page 66 If you don't write your passwords down somewhere, what will happen to your digital world after you die?
Berry and discovery depositions: hard cases make new rules By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2011 Lawpulse, Page 10 The Illinois Supreme Court amends Rule 212 by expanding the permissible uses of discovery depositions to cases where the deponent is a party and has died before trial.
Congress exempts lawyers from the Red Flags Rule By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2011 Lawpulse, Page 10 Congress recently exempted lawyers from an FTC rule that would have required them to develop elaborate identity-theft-prevention procedures.
Estate-planning, other implications of the civil union law By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2011 Lawpulse, Page 10 Legally speaking, civil union partners will step into the shoes of spouses in most cases, students of the legislation say.
Ethics in the age of Twitter By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2011 Lawpulse, Page 10 An ABA ethics commission is looking for suggestions about how to bring the model ethics rules in line with globalization and 21st Century communications technology.
Selling Out By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2011 Article, Page 20 The 2010 update of Illinois' ethics rules make it easier to sell a law practice. But what about practical issues like valuation and transition planning? Seasoned solos offer advice.
All Hail the Illinois Rules of Evidence By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2010 Article, Page 620 On January 1, Illinois finally joins the vast majority of states by codifying its rules of evidence. Here are highlights of the new code.
ISBA ethics opinions: updated and easier to research By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2010 Lawpulse, Page 610 A new searchable online index of ethics opinions, freshly updated in light of the new rules, makes them a better resource than ever for ISBA members.
Proposed Medicaid transfer limits unfair to elderly, council says By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2010 Lawpulse, Page 610 Proposed restrictions on asset transfers, designed to make Medicaid eligibility harder to get for nursing home residents, are unduly harsh, some ISBA lawyers say.
Putting the “hearing” in public hearings By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2010 Lawpulse, Page 610 A lawyer's testimony in the supreme court committee hearing on the new evidence rules produces results.
Unhappy SLAPPers: more muscle for the Citizen Participation Act By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2010 Lawpulse, Page 610 The Illinois Supreme Court held that the Act immunized a defamation defendant's statements to a reporter about a developer.
ABCs for GALs By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2010 Article, Page 572 You'd like to serve as a GAL, child rep, or attorney for the child - how do you play this important but challenging role? Seasoned lawyers offer dos, don'ts, and tips.
At long last, the codified Illinois Rules of Evidence By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2010 Lawpulse, Page 558 Effective January 1, Illinois' new evidence code pulls together evidentiary rules heretofore scattered among various cases, statutes and court rules - and makes a few subtle changes.
GALS and cross-cultural custody By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2010 Lawpulse, Page 558 For custody disputes involving international and immigrant families, determining what's best for the child can be especially difficult.
Lifting the veil on rule 23 orders By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2010 Lawpulse, Page 558 Heretofore unpublished orders will see the light of day and appellate court opinions will appear on the web more quickly thanks to a supreme court rule change. Grab your smartphones and hold onto your briefs: the practice of law has just gotten faster.
Making the most of your FOIA request By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2010 Lawpulse, Page 558 Tips on using the Illinois Freedom of Information Act from a lawyer who has both sought information and served as a municipality's Freedom of Information officer.
Supreme court: contractors can enforce oral home-repair contracts By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2010 Lawpulse, Page 558 The high court looks to a recent revision in the Home Repair and Remodeling Act in holding that a contractor can enforce an oral contract against a homeowner.