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Newsletter articles from 2008
Another court applies the collateral source rule
The April 2007 decision in Wills v. Foster held that, when Medicare and Medicaid discount the recoverable medical bills, the plaintiff will receive a comparably reduced recovery. Another district of the appellate court has now weighed in on the same question with a contrary ruling.
Awarding attorneys fees to prevailing party
A plaintiff files suit against a defendant seeking damages, including reasonable attorney fees, pursuant to a contractual term that provides for an award of fees to the prevailing party.
The Nine: Inside the Secret World of the Supreme Court, Jeffrey Toobin, Doubleday, 2007.
I thought I would take this opportunity to let all of our readers know what we are up to this year.
As chair of the ISBA Bench & Bar Section, I am delighted that H. Thomas Wells Jr. , began his one-year term as ABA President by focusing his support upon the core values that are so important to our members, judges, lawyers, litigants, and the public.
Last month, in my first column, I focused on receiving input from our readers on what the members of the bench and bar would like us to provide them.
The Bench & Bar Section Council met in St. Louis for its annual meeting on Friday, June 27, 2008. We focused on some planning for the coming years.
Considering retardation in sentencing
The Illinois Supreme Court has ruled on the proper application of mental retardation as a mitigating or aggravating factor in sentencing in People v. Heider, 231 Ill.2d 1, ___ N.E.2d ____, 2008 WL 2131584, (May 22, 2008).
Starting in early 2009, the ISBA plans to change the default method for distribution of this newsletter to be by electronic format rather than sending a hard copy by regular mail.
A federal courthouse in Wheaton?
Judge Wayne Andersen of the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois presented the possibility of a District courthouse to the Bench & Bar Section Council meeting on February 22, 2008.
The Illinois Supreme Court sheds light on the “gray areas” of the relation-back doctrine in Porter v. Decatur Memorial Hospital
The question presented in Porter v. Decatur Memorial Hospital, Docket No. 104441 (Jan. 25, 2008), was whether, pursuant to section 2-616(b) of the Code of Civil Procedure (735 ILCS 5/2-616(b)(West 2004)), count III of plaintiff’s second amended complaint related back to his timely-filed original and first amended complaints and, therefore, whether plaintiff’s motion for leave to file a second amended complaint was improperly denied as time-barred. Chief Justice Robert Thomas, writing for a unanimous Illinois Supreme Court, answered these questions in the affirmative.
Interview with the Chief Justice
“A judge’s judge. A lawyer’s judge.” Those are some of the words used to describe Chief Justice Thomas R. Fitzgerald at a recent ISBA-CBA reception honoring Illinois’ new Chief Justice.
Lincoln … A license to practice and a legacy to remember
With the February 2009 bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln’s birth rapidly approaching, many celebrations will commemorate his remarkable life and his course-altering actions as President of a Civil War-ravaged nation.
Upon my graduation from law school in 1964, and after passing the bar exam and being admitted to practice, I had the good fortune of beginning my legal career as a junior law clerk for Justice Byron O. House of Nashville, Illinois, who was the Supreme Court Justice from the 5th Judicial District of Illinois.
Practice Tip – Improving Skills: Your Witness (2008)
On December 5, 2008, the Bench & Bar Section Council will present a Trial Practice and Advocacy – Getting it Right, at the ISBA Chicago Regional Office located at 20 South Clark, 9th Floor. Members of the Section are entitled to a $10 discount for each CLE sponsored by the Section – a significant benefit of section membership.
Pre-conviction DNA gathering
The FBI has proposed taking tissue samples of all persons arrested by the FBI for submission to the FBI’s DNA database. Privacy rights advocates will surely test the validity of this policy in court.