Illinois Bar Journal

Articles on Civil Practice

Making evidence meaningful

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
June
2009
LawPulse
Page 278
A veteran lawyer and trial judge tells litigators how to present evidence in a way that engages and wins over jurors.

Postjudgement Sanctions: Do Trial Courts Have Too Little Power?

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
June
2009
Column
Page 314
Illinois judges should be free to impose sanctions for misconduct after final judgement and on behalf of nonparties if the facts warrant.

Foreclosure defense a practice option real estate lawyers

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
May
2009
LawPulse
Page 220
Representing foreclosed-on homeowners might be a way for real estate lawyers to pick up slack left by the weak economy.

The Power Behind the Robe: A Primer on Contempt Law

By Timothy L. Bertschy & Nathaniel E. Strickler
May
2009
Article
Page 246
The power of contempt is a confusing mix of civil and criminal law concepts overlaid with constitutional implications. Here's a review.

Asked and Answered

April
2009
Column
Page 204
When does a client have to appear?

Code of Civil Procedure provides another opportunity to file an action

April
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 174
On January 29, 2009, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, reversed and remanded the decision of the Circuit Court of Cook County ruling the third-party com plaint untimely under section 13-204 of the Illinois Code of Civil Procedure (735 ILCS 5/13-204 (2006)).

Mailbox rule only applies to items posted using the United States Postal Service

April
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 174
On February 4, 2009, the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District, affirmed the decision of the Circuit Court of Lake County ruling the defendant's post judgment motion to vacate untimely and dismissing the appeal because the mailbox rule does not apply to private mail carriers.

Rules committee hears criminal law, family law, civil practice proposals

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
April
2009
LawPulse
Page 168
The supreme court rules committee heard proposals to require consular notification for foreign nationals, to change child custody rules, and to require additional notice to opposing counsel.

The importance of timely service

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
March
2009
LawPulse
Page 116
Thanks to an amendment to supreme court rule 103(b), plaintiffs who haven’t been otherwise diligent in moving a case along must be especially diligent in obtaining service.

Pleading Civil Rights Claims

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
March
2009
Column
Page 156
The challenges civil-rights claimants face in choosing a forum, shaping their pleadings, and more.

Secretary of State has no duty to sign and affix the state seal to certificate of appointment

March
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 122
On January 9, 2009, the Illinois Supreme Court denied an original action for mandamus holding “that section 5(1) of the Secretary of State Act (15 ILCS 305/5(1) (West 2006)) is inapplicable to the Burris appointment, and that no further action is required by any officer of this state to make the appointment valid.”

Settlements: The Limits of Same-Case Enforcement

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
December
2008
Column
Page 642
 Lessons from the A and A case.

Code of Civil Procedure amended. PA 095-0831

November
2008
Illinois Law Update
Page 554
The Illinois General Assembly has amended the Code of Civil Procedure by modifying several sections. 735 ILCS 5/3.

Judicial Review of Administrative Decisions: A Step-by-Step Guide

By Thomas M. Battista
October
2008
Article
Page 516
An agency rules against your client and you want a court to review the decision. What's the next step? This article explains.

So You Want to Be a Personal Injury Lawyer?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2008
Cover Story
Page 508
How do you break into p.i. practice? Successful practitioners offer advice.

Depositions of Gravely Ill Illinois Claimants

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
September
2008
Column
Page 476
 A majority in Berry found that while the trial court ruled correctly the system failed.

Trial-Practice Don’ts

By Matthew R. Crimmins
July
2008
Article
Page 360
Don't promise the jury more than you can deliver, don't make inflammatory arguments, and more "don'ts" for litigation.

Hudson: New Limits on a Plaintiff’s Right to Refile a Voluntarily Dismissed Case

By Ross B. Edwards
June
2008
Article
Page 294
A controversial new case from the Illinois Supreme Court bars the refiling of a voluntarily dismissed claim when a partially dispositive motion has been granted.

Residents Suing Nonresidents for Harm in Illinois

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
June
2008
Column
Page 318
Two recent appellate cases limit the power to sue nonresidents.

Tapping Agency Expertise: The Doctrine of Primary Jurisdiction

By James W. Hilliard
May
2008
Article
Page 256
Courts use the doctrine to refer an issue to an administrative agency for expert determination. Here's how it works in Illinois.

Refiled Claims: It’s Notice, Not Service

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
March
2008
Column
Page 152
Voluntary dismissals need only be noticed to defendants in the second suit.

Attorney Mistakes, Client Losses: New Visions After Vision Point

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
December
2007
Column
Page 664
Courts should grant extensions for “good cause” failures to comply. So what’s “good cause”?

Sanctioning Firms for Frivolous Filings

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
September
2007
Column
Page 490
Courts should allow sanctions against firms for lawyers' misconduct.

A Higher bar for Class Action Litigation in Illinois

By Justin Lee Heather
July
2007
Article
Page 356
A look at the Illinois Supreme Court's recent Avery and Gridley decisions and their dampening impact on class lawsuits.

Reforming Paternity Procedures: A Dannielynn in Illinois

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
June
2007
Column
Page 324
What would have happened if Anna Nicole Smith's daughter had been born in Illinois?

E-Discovery in Illinois Civil Actions

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
March
2007
Column
Page 150
Wholesale adoption of federal discovery rules by Illinois State courts may be unwise.

Asked and Answered

January
2007
Column
Page 50
What are the rules for serving notice?

Arbitration Clauses: The Singular Approach in Cingular Wireless

By Jeffrey A. Parness
December
2006
Column
Page 678
The Illinois Supreme Court lays down the law on arbitration agreements.

The Playmate and the Probate Exception

By James E. Pfander
June
2006
Column
Page 320
The probate exception lay dormant for decades, but Anna Nicole Smith's case revived it.

The Geography of Class Litigation

By James E. Pfander
March
2006
Column
Page 148
The federal and state high courts have shown a sophisticated understanding of the territorial reach of regulatory power. 

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