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Articles on Law Pulse

Green-sheet blues By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2003 LawPulse, Page 110 For purposes of calculating real estate transfer taxes, the "consideration" paid for a new house equals the original contract price and; whether your homeowner client likes it or not; the extras added later, real estate practitioners argue.
Pet trusts for trusty pets By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2003 LawPulse, Page 110 Illinois may shortly join 16 other states that have passed laws authorizing the creation of trusts with pets as beneficiaries.
Public-employee pension pitfall By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2003 LawPulse, Page 110 Teachers, police officers, and other government workers charged with crimes related to their official duties have one thing in common ; they all face the loss of their pensions, a fact their lawyers should keep in mind.
Small juries are beautiful By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2003 LawPulse, Page 110 Six-person juries are easier to pick, more responsive to case themes, and more likely to reach a unanimous verdict, some criminal defense lawyers say.
What is jurisdictional, anyway? By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2003 LawPulse, Page 110 The supreme court's recent assertion that it lacked jurisdiction because an affidavit of intent to appeal was defective arguably begs the question, "What is jurisdictional?"
The case of the inflexible filing deadline By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2003 LawPulse, Page 58 The supreme court agrees to hear an administrative-law case which raises the question whether the strict, "jurisdictional" interpretation of a filing deadline is a denial of due process.
The dentist-patient privilege By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2003 LawPulse, Page 58 The physician-patient privilege applies to dentists, too, the supreme court rules.
Miranda, Fifth Amendment don’t apply in summary-suspension hearings By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2003 LawPulse, Page 58 Three Illinois Appellate Court districts have ruled that summary-suspension hearings are civil proceedings to which Miranda and the privilege against self-incrimination do not apply.
Out-of-state child removal; what will the supremes do? By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2003 LawPulse, Page 58 The Illinois Supreme Court will review an appellate court decision that stopped a custodial mother from removing her son to her fiancé's home state.
Bankruptcy reform still a waiting game By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2003 LawPulse, Page 8 Congress has yet to pass bankruptcy reform legislation. Meanwhile, the bankruptcy bar has had little success in tempering provisions they say are unfriendly and unfair to lawyers.
Blind plea, blind justice? By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2003 LawPulse, Page 8 Capital murder trials put a strain on county budgets, which has led to second-class justice in some cases, critics charge. But improvements in the capital litigation system are making a difference.
First steps toward e-filing in Illinois By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2003 LawPulse, Page 8 The Illinois Supreme Court has set the ground rules for a pilot e-filing project in the circuit courts.
Involuntary administration of psychotropic drugs: Does Illinois need new standards? By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2003 LawPulse, Page 8 Some experts think Illinois law should be changed to make it easier to involuntarily admit mental patients and force them to take psychotropic drugs if they're unwilling. Others fear the changes would crowd mental-health facilities beyond capacity.
Rule 23 proposals headed soon to the supreme court By Helen W. Gunnarsson January 2003 LawPulse, Page 8 An ISBA committee prepares to forward proposals to the Illinois Supreme Court for changing the rule that governs unpublished opinions.
Bar associations, U.S. reps seek exemptions for lawyers from Gramm-Leach-Bliley By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2002 LawPulse, Page 628 The New York State and American Bar Associations have filed lawsuits seeking declaratory judgments that the FTC's application of GLBA's privacy provisions to practicing attorneys is unlawful, and members of Congress have introduced legislation that would exempt lawyers from the Act.
Pet project By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2002 LawPulse, Page 628 More and more estate-planning clients want to make sure that Fluffy is well provided for. Here's how to help them.
The supremes say “no” to a taxpayer suit against Gov. Ryan By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2002 LawPulse, Page 628 In Lyons v Ryan, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled that taxpayers lack standing to sue for damages caused by the licenses-for-bribes scheme because the attorney general alone has the authority to initiate litigation on behalf of the state.
Whither estate-planning practice? By Helen W. Gunnarsson December 2002 LawPulse, Page 628 Demographic trends and tax-law changes may generate some short-term business, but they'll mean less work for estate-planning lawyers in the long run. Are you ready to adjust your practice?
Child support: pending privatization of the SDU raises concerns By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2002 LawPulse, Page 578 State officials say there's no cause for alarm, but some lawyers worry that changing vendors could once again muddle the child-support distribution system.
Clash over class actions By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2002 LawPulse, Page 578 Madison County is at the center of a dispute over class-action filings.
The devil in the details of domestic-partner benefits By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2002 LawPulse, Page 578 More employers are offering benefits to their employees' nonspouse partners. Here are some of the legal and administrative issues they need to consider.
Do trial lawyers have the Country behind them? By Helen W. Gunnarsson November 2002 LawPulse, Page 578 A recent case interpreting language that appears in many Country Companies insurance policies has the plaintiffs' bar buzzing.
College saving in Illinois; a new carrot and stick By Helen W. Gunnarsson October 2002 LawPulse, Page 506 Illinois residents have another incentive to invest in Illinois' Bright Start college savings program; and a disincentive to participate in plans offered by other states.
Fee tax turns employment-lawsuit winner into loser By Helen W. Gunnarsson October 2002 LawPulse, Page 506 Taxing attorney fee awards as income to the plaintiff threatens to reduce an employee's award to less than zero.
Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court keeps its eyes on the spies By Helen W. Gunnarsson October 2002 LawPulse, Page 506 A brief history of the federal court that reviews the propriety of foreign intelligence wiretaps, which recently made news by denying a wiretap request for only the second time in 20-plus years.
The power of special interrogatories By Helen W. Gunnarsson October 2002 LawPulse, Page 506 They're a useful tool for the plaintiffs' bar as well as the defense, a trial lawyer says.
The truth about mold By Helen W. Gunnarsson October 2002 LawPulse, Page 506 If you practice real-estate law, it's time you learned the moldy facts.
Corporate reform bill tough on lawyers By Helen W. Gunnarsson September 2002 LawPulse, Page 448 Ironically, the SEC was lukewarm to less stringent ethics rules urged by a U of I law prof and colleagues last spring.
Is E-mail Subject to the Open Meetings Act? By Helen W. Gunnarsson September 2002 LawPulse, Page 448 Some e-mail exchanges between public board members might constitute meetings and thus implicate the Open Meetings Act.
New law will help trustees avoid Hobson’s Choice By Helen W. Gunnarsson September 2002 LawPulse, Page 448 SB 1697, now awaiting Gov. Ryan's signature, will make it easier for trustees of certain commonly used trusts to invest the principal so as to benefit both income and remainder beneficiaries.