Publications

Articles on Law Pulse

Making UIM arbitration awards binding in more cases

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2003
LawPulse
Page 544
Effective January 1, an ISBA-backed bill more than doubles the statutory limits on binding arbitration awards in UIM cases, reducing the incentive for insurers to reject them.

Return of the Petrillo doctrine for hospital defendants

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2003
LawPulse
Page 544
Beginning next year, a new law will once again ban ex parte conversations between a hospital's lawyers and a plaintiff's treating physicians.

The Structured Settlement Protection Act helps judges say “no”

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
November
2003
LawPulse
Page 544
Some damage-award recipients don't act wisely when trading in their structured settlements for lump-sum payouts. A new law helps courts say "no" to bad deals.

Breathing new life into forum non conveniens?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2003
LawPulse
Page 486
A new supreme court case may signal a new willingness to police forum shopping, legal scholars say.

Business-law clean-up bill now on the books

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2003
LawPulse
Page 486
The new Act reconciles inconsistencies, removes obsolete provisions, and makes compliance with the law easier.

Little-noted Illinois Civil Rights Act takes effect January 1

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2003
LawPulse
Page 486
Among other things, the new law allows attorney-fee awards to prevailing claimants.

Small firms, big cases

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2003
LawPulse
Page 486
How three lawyers from small-practice settings and different parts of Illinois teamed up to bring a high-stakes whistleblower lawsuit.

State Lawsuit Immunity Act opens Illinois to lawsuits from state employees

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
October
2003
LawPulse
Page 486
The new law, which allows state employees to bring race, age, and other discrimination suits, has claimants' lawyers cheering.

Hospitals potentially liable even if doctor takes the blame

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2003
LawPulse
Page 430
The supreme court recently affirmed a med-mal plaintiff's right to proceed against a hospital even where the physician falls on his sword.

Is Moren unmoorin’ administrative agencies from statutory limits?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2003
LawPulse
Page 430
According to one informed observer, a recent appellate case gives administrative agencies powers the legislature didn't intend to confer.

MJP: it’s not just a large-firm issue

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2003
LawPulse
Page 430
Do any of your clients winter in Florida? Do you do legal work with your laptop and cell phone while on vacation out of state? Find out what ISBA has done to promote clearer rules defining the dos and don'ts of multijurisdictional practice.

Mortgage Certificate of Relief Act amendments signed into law

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2003
LawPulse
Page 430
Lenders often fail to send a certificate of release after a mortgage has been paid off. A new law addresses the problem.

Will Ozik inspire more p.i. settlements?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
September
2003
LawPulse
Page 430
According to plaintiffs' lawyers, a recent appellate court ruling means that more defendants will be found jointly, rather than just severally, liable. And that could make them more willing to settle.

Assessing reassessments

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
August
2003
LawPulse
Page 374
Appellate court precedent makes it difficult for assessors to change the valuation of property more often than once every four years. But what are the limits on assessors' authority to "revise and correct"?

Guardian ad litem 101

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
August
2003
LawPulse
Page 374
Veteran ISBA members offer advice to lawyers who find themselves appointed as guardian ad litem for disabled respondents.

Illinois says “no” to estate-tax elimination

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
August
2003
LawPulse
Page 374
The feds are phasing out the estate tax, but beginning this year cash-strapped Illinois will no longer cap its estate tax at the federal maximum.

The perils of POA agency

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
August
2003
LawPulse
Page 374
Serving as agent under a durable power of attorney for property is a good deed that, too often, does not go unpunished.

Workin’ overtime

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
August
2003
LawPulse
Page 374
Proposed federal regs would redefine exemptions from overtime laws, particularly for managerial employees.

Bankrupt employees; no firing after filing?

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
July
2003
LawPulse
Page 326
Employers may not "discriminat[e] or retaliat[e] against" employees who have filed for bankruptcy. But what does that mean?

Child custody: Easing the way for out-of-state removal

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
July
2003
LawPulse
Page 326
The supreme court rules that a divorced parent can move a child outside of Illinois without showing a direct benefit to the child from the relocation.

For whom the statute tolls

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
July
2003
LawPulse
Page 326
When does a statute of limitations begin to run for a cause of action held by a deceased minor? Surprisingly, Illinois courts of review have never answered the question.

Honor thy POA

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
July
2003
LawPulse
Page 326
What can you do when a bank refuses to honor a duly executed POA for property? Here are some suggestions.

Murphy’s Law: A judge says “no” to UPL

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
July
2003
LawPulse
Page 326
An Illinois-based federal district judge takes a bold stand against UPL, and the seventh circuit affirms.

Insuring against bankrupt insurers

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
June
2003
LawPulse
Page 274
What to do when an insurance company important to your case goes belly up? For one thing, consult the Illinois Office of the Special Deputy Receiver.

Leaving with clients in tow

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
June
2003
LawPulse
Page 274
If you're leaving your law firm and hope to take business with you, consider these ethical and legal issues.

Proposed RESPA Regs Worry Real-Estate Bar

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
June
2003
LawPulse
Page 274
Real estate practitioners fear that proposed new regulations under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act spell trouble for consumers and lawyers.

Teen courts on the rise in Illinois

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
June
2003
LawPulse
Page 274
Courts staffed by teenagers are coming to a community near you.

County must pay judgment against sheriff

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
May
2003
LawPulse
Page 220
The Illinois Supreme Court recently held that a county must pay judgments entered against a sheriff's office acting in an official capacity.

Meeting the press

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
May
2003
LawPulse
Page 220
Why should lawyers talk to reporters? Because it can be good for you and your client, journalists say.

Nursing home litigation: no certificate of merit required

By Helen W. Gunnarsson
May
2003
LawPulse
Page 220
In a victory for plaintiffs, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled that litigants need not attach 2-622 certificates of merit to suits against nursing homes under the Nursing Home Care Act.

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