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Supreme Court quick takes

Quick takes on Friday's Illinois Supreme Court Criminal opinions

Posted on January 22, 2016 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Friday's top Illinois Supreme Court Criminal opinions in People v. Cummings, People v. Tolbert, People v. Chambers, People v. Sanders, People. v. Williams, People v. Lerma, People v. Thompson and People v. Salem.

People v. Cummings

By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State Appellate Defender

Derrick Cummings was driving a van registered to Pearlene Chattic when an officer initiated a traffic stop because Chattic was the subject of an arrest warrant. The officer could not see the driver before initiating the stop. Upon approaching, he saw Cummings was a man and thus, clearly, was not Chattic. The officer asked Cummings for his license, and defendant responded he did not have one. Cummings was then cited for driving while license suspended.

The circuit court granted suppression, and the appellate court affirmed. Initially, the Illinois Supreme Court followed suit. On remand from the United States Supreme Court to reconsider its earlier opinion in light of Rodriguez v. U.S., 135 S. Ct. 1609, however, the Court reversed.

Quick takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions

Posted on December 17, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the civil cases Bowman v. Ottney and Board of Education of the City of Chicago v. Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board and the criminal cases People v. Hughes, People v. Burns and In re Michael D.

Note: The authors of the summaries and the staff of Illinois Lawyer Now wish to honor the memory of Hon. Jean Prendergast Rooney, who passed away on December 8, 2015, and was a valuable original member of this team before becoming Circuit Judge. She is greatly missed.

CIVIL

Bowman v. Ottney

By Michael T. Reagan, Law Offices of Michael T. Reagan

When a judge has made a ruling on a substantial issue in a case, followed by a voluntary dismissal without prejudice pursuant to 735 ILCS 5/2-1009, a party may not move for substitution of judge when the subsequently refiled case is assigned to the judge who presided in the first case. In Bowman v. Ottney, the judge ruled on substantial issues, such as the scope of discovery. Thereafter, plaintiff voluntarily dismissed her complaint and timely refiled her action. The refiled case was assigned to the original judge, and plaintiff immediately moved for substitution of judge pursuant to 735 ILCS 5/2-1001. Defendant objected, asserting that plaintiff had “tested the waters” during the first case. The circuit court denied the substitution of judge but certified the issue under SCR 308.

Quick takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions

Posted on December 3, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the civil cases 1010 Lake Shore Association v. Deutsche Bank National Trust Company and DG Enterprises v. Cornelius. and the criminal cases People v. Carter, People v. Schweihs, People v. Thompson and People v. Espinoza.

CIVIL

1010 Lake Shore Association v. Deutsche Bank National Trust Company

By Karen Kies DeGrand, Donohue Brown Mathewson & Smyth LLC

A condominium association won summary judgment in a lawsuit it brought against a bank in a fight over whether the bank had extinguished the association’s lien rights following purchase of the unit at a judicial foreclosure sale. Interpreting two statutes, section 9(g)(3) of the Condominium Property Act and section 15-1509(c) of the Mortgage Foreclosure Law, the Illinois Supreme Court determined that a lien for unpaid assessments by a previous owner is not fully extinguished at a judicial foreclosure and sale unless the new owner “confirms the extinguishment” of the lien by paying assessments incurred after the sale. The lien is statutorily created upon a unit owner’s failure to pay common expenses when due. Even assuming that the condominium association was included as a party to the prior foreclosure action, the bank still was required to take the additional step to confirm the extinguishment by paying post sale assessments.  

Quick takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions

Posted on November 19, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the civil cases Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Ltd., v. Heritage Bank of Central Illinois and In re A.A. and the criminal cases People v. Wiliams, People v. Guzman and People v. Castleberry.

CIVIL

Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Ltd v. Heritage Bank of Central Illinois

By Karen Kies DeGrand, Donohue Brown Mathewson & Smith LLC

Quick takes on Wednesday's Illinois Supreme Court Criminal opinions

Posted on November 5, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

In re M.A.

By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State Appellate Defender

When she was 13 years old, M.A. used a knife to cut her 14-year-old brother after a physical altercation between them.  As a result, she was adjudicated delinquent of aggravated domestic battery, aggravated battery, and domestic battery.  On appeal, she challenged the registration provisions of the Violent Offender Act on various constitutional grounds.

Asserting an equal protection violation, M.A. argued that juvenile violent offenders were similarly situated to juvenile sex offenders.  The Court rejected that assertion, citing to the legislative history of both the Sex Offender Registration Act (SORA) and the Violent Offender Act (VOA).

Quick take on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinion in "junk fax" case

Posted on October 22, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

Ballard RN Center, Inc. v. Kohll's Pharmacy & Homecare, Inc.

By Michael T. Reagan, Law Offices of Michael T. Reagan

In this “junk fax” class action case, the court held that a motion for class certification filed contemporaneously with the complaint was sufficient to bar a claim of mootness by defendant, which tendered the full amount recoverable under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act after the complaint, and class certification motion, were filed. In partially reversing the appellate court and in affirming the circuit court, the supreme court centered its analysis on its opinion in Barber v. American Airlines, Inc., 241 Ill.2d 450 (2011).

In Barber, plaintiff’s class action was properly dismissed because there was no motion for class certification pending when the defendant refunded the $40 baggage fee which was at issue, thereby mooting the class plaintiff’s claim. An underpinning of the reasoning in Barber was that in the absence of a motion for certification, the interests of the other class members were not then before the court.  

Here, defendant argued, in part, that the motion for class certification was a “shell” motion that lacked content. The supreme court disagreed, saying that the motion contained a general outline of the action, and effectively communicated the fundamental nature of the putative class action.

Quick takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions

Posted on October 8, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the civil case Nelson v. Artley and the criminal case People v. Stapinski.

CIVIL

Nelson v. Artley

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

The liability of a rental car company who obtains a certificate of self-insurance from the Secretary of State is limited to the same minimum coverage provisions applicable to rental car companies who meet their financial responsibility obligations through purchasing an insurance policy. 

Mr. Nelson was injured by an Enterprise rental car driven by Mr. Artley, who was uninsured. Nelson sued Artley, resulting in a default judgment of $600,000.  Nelson brought a supplementary action against Enterprise.

Enterprise asserted various affirmative defenses, the most pertinent dealing with its financial exposure.  Enterprise argued that because it was self-insured, its total financial responsibility per occurrence was $100,000 (the statutory minimum coverage requirements for insurance).  Because $75,000 already had been paid or allotted to other claims arising out of the same incident, the circuit court issued a turnover order of $25,000 to Nelson. 

Quick takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court Criminal opinions

Posted on September 24, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

A review of Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the criminal cases In re Q.P., People v. Fiveash and People v. Goossens.

CRIMINAL

In re Q.P.

By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State Appellate Defender

An officer responded to a call of a vehicle burglary in progress. Upon arriving, he located the minor, Q.P., who matched the description of the burglar. The officer handcuffed the minor and put him in the back of the squad car. The minor gave a false name and date of birth. Upon discovery that the information was false, the minor admitted to the officer that he was attempting to prevent the police from discovering that he had an outstanding warrant.

The minor was charged with, and convicted of, obstructing justice based upon giving false information to the police with the intent to prevent his apprehension. The Supreme Court was called upon to determine the meaning of “apprehension.” The minor argued that he was already apprehended because he was in police custody at the time he provided the false information. The State argued that apprehension is specific to each criminal charge and thus, while the minor had been apprehended for the suspected vehicle burglary, he had not yet been apprehended on the outstanding warrant.

Quick takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court Civil opinions

Posted on September 24, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the civil cases Stevens v. McGuireWoods, LLP,  Lake Environmental Inc. v. Arnold, Seymour v. Collins, The Village of Vernon Hills v. Heelan and O’Toole  v. The Chicago Zoological Society.

CIVIL

Stevens v. McGuireWoods L.L.P.

By Michael T. Reagan, Law Offices of Michael T. Reagan

The court’s unanimous opinion in Stevens v. McGuireWoods, LLP, is grounded on the established points that legal malpractice plaintiffs must be able to establish actual monetary loss as damages, that such a plaintiff cannot be in a better position by bringing suit against the attorney than if the underlying action had been prosecuted successfully, and that damages obtainable in a corporate derivative action belong to the corporation, and not to plaintiff shareholders. 

The plaintiffs here are former minority shareholders in an LLC.  They had retained the defendant law firm to bring claims against managers of the LLC as well as its majority shareholder.  Those claims were brought in both individual and derivative capacities.  Substituted counsel brought additional claims against the LLC’s corporate counsel.  Those claims were dismissed for various reasons, including standing and statutes of limitations and repose.  The plaintiff shareholders settled the underlying case, and relinquished all ownership interest in the LLC.

Quick takes on Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions

Posted on June 18, 2015 by Chris Bonjean

Our panel of leading appellate attorneys review Thursday's Illinois Supreme Court opinions in the civil cases In re Marrige of Mueller and Hadley v. Subscriber Doe and the criminal case People v. Downs.

CIVIL

In re Marriage of Mueller

By Karen Kies DeGrand, Donohue Brown Mathewson & Smyth LLC

 

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