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Illinois Supreme Court

Quick takes on Friday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions

Posted on October 17, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Friday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the civil cases Hayashi v. Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation and Lake County Grading Co. v. Village of Antioch and the criminal case People v. Patterson.

CIVIL

Hayashi v. Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation

By Alyssa M. Reiter, Williams, Montgomery & John Ltd.

The plaintiffs in this case were physicians whose health care licenses were permanently revoked based upon prior convictions for battery or criminal sexual abuse of their patients.  They argued that section 2105-165 of the Department of Professional Regulation Law, which was the basis for the revocation, did not apply to people whose convictions predated the Act, that the Act was impermissibly retroactive, and that the enforcement violated various state and federal constitutional provisions.

The Supreme Court found “no merit” in any of plaintiff’s claims. The Court affirmed the dismissal of plaintiffs’ complaints for declaratory and injunctive relief.

Section 2105-165 was enacted in 2011. It mandates permanent revocation, without a hearing, of the license of a health care worker who has been convicted of certain types of criminal offenses, such as “Sex Offender” offenses. Each of the plaintiffs had been convicted, before 2011, of the types of offenses included within the Act.

The Court held that the language of the Act, which provides that revocation applies when a health care worker “has been convicted,” indicated that the Act was intended to apply to convictions that predated the Act.

Illinois Supreme Court OKs e-filing for traffic and criminal cases

Posted on October 14, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

The Illinois Supreme Court announced on Tuesday that its standards and principles on electronic filing have been amended and expanded to allow trial courts in Illinois to begin electronic filing of court documents in criminal and traffic cases.

"I wholeheartedly support the increased use of technology in our courthouses and courtrooms," Chief Justice Rita B. Garman said. "Amending our electronic filing standards will streamline the system and increase its efficiency by expanding the types of cases that can be e-filed, generating savings to the taxpayer and conserving environmental resources."

This e-filing expansion also will greatly benefit counties that would implement an e-Traffic Citation program along with e-filing, allowing participating counties to eliminate the need to transmit the paper copy of the e-Citation, which makes up the highest volume of filed documents.

Originally, electronic filing in Illinois circuit courts began in September 2002, when the Supreme Court approved e-filing of civil case court documents as a pilot program. That program took effect January 1, 2003. During that time, a total of five counties were approved to operate e-filing pilots: Cook, DuPage, Madison, St. Clair, and Will.

In October 2012, the Supreme Court announced new statewide standards and principles that completed the pilot stage of civil case e-filing in Illinois' circuit courts. The new standards and principles permit and encourage all circuit court clerks, in partnership with the chief circuit judge, to apply for approval for permanent and on-going e-filing procedures.

Montgomery, Voiland appointed associate judges in 23rd Circuit

Posted on October 14, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Michael J. Tardy, Director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced today that the Twenty-Third Judicial Circuit judges voted to select Philip G. Montgomery and Joseph R. Voiland as associate judges of the Twenty-Third Judicial Circuit.

Mr. Montgomery received his undergraduate degree in 1984 from Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, and his Juris Doctor in 1987 from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. Mr. Montgomery is currently affiliated with the DeKalb County State's Attorney's Office in Sycamore.

Mr. Voiland received his undergraduate degree in 1974 from Washington State University in Pullman, Washington and his Juris Doctor in 1977 from Loyola University in Chicago. Mr. Voiland is currently engaged in solo practice in Yorkville and as a bankruptcy trustee with the U.S. Department of Justice in Chicago.

Quick take on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court legal malpractice opinion

Posted on October 2, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

A member of our panel of leading appellate attorneys reviews Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinion in the legal malpractice case Goldfine v. Barack, Ferrazzano, Kirschbaum & Perlman.

Goldfine v. Barack, Ferrazzano, Kirschbaum & Perlman

By Karen Kies DeGrand, Donohue Brown Mathewson & Smyth LLC

In a legal malpractice action for the loss of a claim under the Illinois Security Law of 1953, the Illinois Supreme Court rejected a law firm’s arguments that it was being punished for securities violations rather than subject to compensatory damages for negligence. Stock purchases made in 1987-1990 giving rise to an action against Shearson Lehman, broker Michael Steinberg, and others provided the backdrop for the legal malpractice action. The plaintiffs, Morton and Adrienne Goldfine, retained the defendant law firm, Barack, Ferrazzano, Kirschbaum & Perlman, to sue the brokers after the  investment proved worthless as a result of the bankruptcy of the company whose stock plaintiffs purchased in 11 transactions. The plaintiffs had a claim for rescission under the Illinois Securities Law; however, claims against the broker defendants were dismissed based upon the law firm’s failure to serve the rescission notice required by the statute.

Kauzlarich appointed associate judge in 14th Circuit

Posted on October 2, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Michael J. Tardy, Director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced today that the Fourteenth Judicial Circuit judges voted to select Norma Kauzlarich as an associate judge of the Fourteenth Judicial Circuit.

Ms. Kauzlarich received her undergraduate degree in 1986 from Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, and her Juris Doctor in 1994 from the University of Iowa. Ms. Kauzlarich is currently affiliated with the Rock Island County State's Attorney's Office in Rock Island.

Supreme Court to formally rededicate building on Oct. 7

Posted on October 1, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

President Felice to speak at historic event

In 1938, Walter T. Gunn was sworn in as the 70th Justice of the Illinois Supreme Court. A self-described "ordinary country lawyer by profession", the Danville attorney continued to serve on the Court until his retirement in 1951. Justice Gunn also served as Chief Justice from 1940-1941, the second from Vermilion County to do so.

Nearly 76 years later, Champaign resident and internationally renowned vocalist Nathan Gunn will perform in the same building that his great-grandfather once heard oral arguments. He and his wife Julie Jordan Gunn are special guest performers at the Court's rededication ceremony of the restored Supreme Court Building on Tuesday, October 7 at 6 p.m.

Illinois Supreme Court annouces judicial vacancy in 11th Circuit

Posted on September 26, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Chief Justice Rita B. Garman of the Supreme Court of Illinois has begun an application process for an at-large Circuit Court vacancy in the Eleventh Judicial Circuit.

The vacancy is created by the announced retirement of Judge Elizabeth A. Robb on December 31, 2014. Judge Robb has been a Circuit Judge since 2000.

Supreme Court Rules Committee schedules public hearing on proposed rule amendments

Posted on September 22, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

The Illinois Supreme Court Rules Committee will seek comment at a public hearing in Chicago on a proposed amendment to a Supreme Court rule regarding personal identity information in civil case filings. The Committee will also consider comments on proposed rule changes involving motions in a reviewing court; appeals from final circuit court judgments in civil cases; and general rules governing appeals from the Appellate Court to the Supreme Court.

All of the proposals will be aired at a public hearing of the Supreme Court Rules Committee on Friday, October 10 at 10 a.m. in Chicago. Copies of all proposals are available on the Supreme Court website at: www.illinoiscourts.gov/SupremeCourt/Public_Hearings/Rules/default.asp.

Quick takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions

Posted on September 18, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the civil cases Slepicka v. Ill. Dept. of Public Health, Nationwide Financial v. Pobuda and Bruns v. City of Centralia and the criminal case People v. Perez.

CIVIL

Slepicka v. Illinois Department of Public Health

By Alyssa M. Reiter, Williams, Montgomery & John Ltd.

What is the remedy if administrative review is sought in the wrong circuit court? Here, the Court held that the remedy was for the action to be transferred to the correct district of the Appellate Court to review the merits.

The Illinois Department of Public Health issued an order from Springfield determining that Mary Slepicka was subject to involuntary discharge from her nursing home, which was located in Cook County.  Slepicka sought administrative review of that decision in the Sangamon County circuit court. The nursing home moved to dismiss or transfer for improper venue. The circuit court denied the motion and confirmed the Department’s decision.

The nursing home sought dismissal of Slepicka’s appeal. The Appellate Court, Fourth District, found that the circuit court had jurisdiction but that venue was improper. It vacated the circuit court judgment and remanded with directions that the action be transferred to Cook County circuit court to review the Department’s decision.

Illinois Supreme Court disbars 9 lawyers, suspends 21 in latest disciplinary filing

Posted on September 15, 2014 by Chris Bonjean

 
The Supreme Court of Illinois announced the filing of lawyer disciplinary orders on Sept. 12, 2014, during the September Term of Court. Sanctions were imposed because the lawyers engaged in professional misconduct by violating state ethics law.

DISBARRED

  • Paul M. Daugerdas, Wilmette

Mr. Daugerdas, who was licensed in 1974, was disbarred on consent after he was found guilty of federal charges of tax evasion, mail fraud, conspiracy to defraud the United States, and obstructing tax laws. He was sentenced to a 15-year term of imprisonment.

  • Norton Helton, Chicago

Mr. Helton, who was licensed in 1993, was disbarred on consent. He was convicted of bankruptcy and wire fraud in federal court and was sentenced to a prison term of 180 months and ordered to make $3,277,475 in restitution. He participated in a scheme to obtain money from homeowners facing foreclosure by means of materially false and fraudulent pretenses, representations and material omissions.

  • Clarence Contee Jones, Jr., Tacoma, Wash.

Mr. Jones was licensed in Illinois in 1994 and in Washington in 1997. He was disbarred in Washington for sexually exploiting office staff over whom he had supervisory authority. He also entered guilty pleas to four misdemeanor counts of assault in the fourth degree with sexual motivation. The Supreme Court of Illinois imposed reciprocal discipline and disbarred him.

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