Publications

Articles on Judges and Judiciary

Judicial Selection in Illinois: A Third Way

By Gino L. DiVito
December
2010
Article
Page 624
Judicial elections? Merit selection? While the decades-old debate continues, a former judge proposes a constitutional amendment that represents a third way.

The hard work of running for judge

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2010
LawPulse
Page 446

Judicial evaluations - a necessary pain in the neck

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2010
LawPulse
Page 446

So You Want to Be a Judge?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2010
Article
Page 456
High status, great money, no practice-management headaches - what lawyer wouldn't want to be a judge? What lawyer indeed, which is why it's a hard gig to get.

Substitution of Judge as of Right: When Is it Too Late?

By Marie C. Fahnert and Tracey Daniels
August
2010
Article
Page 422
Substituting a judge as of right - even fairly well into your case - is easier than you might think, and easier in some appellate districts than others. Here's a review.

Judicial Versus Legislative Authority after Lebron

By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness
June
2010
Column
Page 324
The med-mal caps ruling continues the age-old battle over separation of powers.

A judge’s guide to drafting orders

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
May
2010
LawPulse
Page 230
A bankruptcy judge's 18 guidelines for drafting orders are a surprise hit on the blawgging circuit.

Recipe or Disaster? Checklists Can Help

By Hon. Ron Spears
May
2010
Column
Page 268
Checklists can help us reduce avoidable errors.

Although a trial court’s failure to rule on a motion in limine may constitute an abuse of discretion, a harmless error will not overturn a ruling.

October
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 496
On July 24, 2009, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, affirmed the judgment of the Circuit Court of Cook County, holding that the trial court did not err when it deferred ruling on the defendant’s motion in limine until after he testified.  

When Recusal Leads to DEADLOCK: A Constitutional Cure

By J. Timothy Eaton and Lynn A. Ellenberger
October
2009
Article
Page 510
The authors propose a constitutional amendment allowing replacement of Illinois Supreme Court justices when recusal makes rendering a decision impossible.

Mandatory retirement age for judges ruled unconstitutional

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2009
LawPulse
Page 438
The Illinois Supreme Court rules that the statute requiring judges to retire at age 75 is unconstitutional and says mandating retirement for judges might require constitutional amendment.

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.

The Power Behind the Robe: A Primer on Contempt Law

By Timothy L. Bertschy and 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.

New laws criminalize interference with the duties of a judicial officer. PA 095-1035

April
2009
Illinois Law Update
Page 174
Illinois lawmakers amended the Criminal Code of 1961 by adding two new sections making it a crime to interfere with the duties of a judicial officer, or attempt to bribe an officer's immediate family, staff, or other court employees. 720 ILCS 5/32-4e, 32-4f.

Court’s failure to grant continuance plain error

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
March
2009
LawPulse
Page 116
The high court rules that a judge’s failure to grant defense counsel’s request for a continuance in a murder trial was plain error requiring a new trial.

A Judge’s Judge

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2008
Article
Page 448
In Thomas Fitzgerald, the Illinois Supreme Court has a seasoned trial judge at the helm. Here’s an interview with the new chief.

Correspondence from Our Readers

July
2008
Column
Page 330
Sharia law? Voluntary dismissal; confrontation clause; HUD-1 form.st.

Correspondence from Our Readers

June
2008
Column
Page 274
 Sharia law; Rukavina and law-related services.

Felzak and Ligon: an answer to judicial overactivism?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
April
2008
LawPulse
Page 174
What if a judge surprises you by entering an order on a substantive matter at what was supposed to be a mere status hearing? Some lawyers apprise the court of two appellate cases.

Problem-Solving Courts

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
April
2008
Article
Page 184
Supporters of drug, mental-health, and other specialty courts say they reduce recidivism and help offenders get control of their lives.

Asked and Answered

November
2007
Column
Page 610
What do you do with a difficult judge?

Judicial Evaluation -De Facto Merit Selection?

By Joseph G. Bisceglia
September
2007
Column
Page 452
By educating voters, bar groups can counter special interests.

A Day for Justice

By Irene F. Bahr
May
2007
Column
Page 228
Raising awareness about judicial independence is more important than ever.

Correspondence from Our Readers

January
2007
Column
Page 6
Don't be afraid to substitute judges.

Defamation per se of candidate requires more than mean-spirited hyperbole

January
2007
Illinois Law Update
Page 14
The Illinois Appellate Court, Fifth District, recently affirmed the decision of the Circuit Court of Madison County, dismissing a defamation action brought by Maag, a judge in a retention election. 

Impaired Lawyers: Helping Before the Bell Tolls

By Hon. Ron Spears
November
2006
Column
Page 626
Don't take advantage of impaired judges and adversaries; help them

Judicial Independence: A Citizen’s Right

By Irene F. Bahr
November
2006
Column
Page 576
Judicial Independence: A Citizen's Right

Substitution of Judges: Proceed with Caution

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2006
Article
Page 590
Lawyers and judges speculate about whether and when moving for substitution is really the right move.

Voter Information and Judicial Retention Elections in Illinois

By Albert J. Klumpp Ph
October
2006
Article
Page 538
Are judicial retention elections impervious to information-based voting? An analysis of voting patterns suggests not.

MCLE for judges

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
May
2006
LawPulse
Page 222
Judges, too, are on the hook for mandatory CLE, the Illinois Supreme Court announced last month. 

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