Top News

Chicago tax on car rentals outside city limits unconstitutional stretch of power, IL Supreme Court says

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 20, 2017, 4:13pm

The city of Chicago cannot require car rental businesses located outside city limits to collect city taxes on rental cars leased by Chicago city residents, the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled, striking down as unconstitutional a city ordinance seeking to slap a tax on cars rented within three miles of Chicago city limits.

Lawyers behind NCAA concussion settlement request combined $21M in fees

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 18, 2017, 5:28pm

Laywers behind the nationwide concussion class action lawsuit against the NCAA, which resulted in a $70 million settlement to improve “medical monitoring” of college athletes at risk of brain injuries, have now asked a Chicago federal judge to award them attorney fees of $15 million. And attorneys with Edelson P.C., who represented an objector to the initial settlement and claims their work added $50 million to the settlement, has requested the court order an additional $6 million in fees.

Appeals court: Cook Circuit Clerk misinterpreted state law, can be sued for wrongly collecting fees

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 18, 2017, 4:08pm

The Cook County Circuit Clerk’s office has misinterpreted a state law allowing it to collect fees from people filing certain motions in court, a state appeals court has said, clearing the way for a Chicago man and his attorney to pursue their lawsuit to secure a court order forcing the clerk’s office to stop demanding the money.

Ex-Wrigley rooftop owner among four lawyers disbarred, eight suspended in Illinois in January

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 17, 2017, 11:17pm

A lawyer and businessman who formerly owned the Skybox on Sheffield rooftop club overlooking Wrigley Field has been disbarred just days after he was sentenced to 18 months in prison for allegedly concealing more than $1 million in revenue. Marc Hamid was one of four Illinois attorneys disbarred by the Illinois Supreme Court in January; eight others were suspended.

Ex-Jewel-Osco store managers sue for age discrimination, allege company set them up to fail

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 17, 2017, 7:46pm

Four former Jewel Osco store managers, each between 59-61 years old, have sued the Chicago area supermarket chain for age discrimination, claiming they were set up to fail and replaced for being too old.

IL Supreme Court mulls legality of hospital property tax exemptions; could await better test case

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 13, 2017, 5:23pm

The Illinois Supreme Court could soon decide whether hospitals in Illinois should be allowed to avoid paying property taxes, or whether a state law used to grant them tax exemptions should be declared unconstitutional. Or the court could simply sidestep the matter for now, and instead await the arrival of a different case better suited for addressing the sticky legal questions.

$4.25M deal ends litigation vs Northern Trust over 'hundreds of millions' in losses for public pensions

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 12, 2017, 11:21pm

A Chicago federal judge has signed off on a $4.25 million settlement to end years of litigation between financial investment firm Northern Trust Co. and a host of public worker retirement plans in Chicago and elsewhere in the U.S. over claims Northern Trust’s allegedly risky investment decisions had led to hundreds of millions of dollars in losses for the retirement programs when markets crashed at the onset of the Great Recession.

Cook County judge: No new trial, $52M medmal verdict stands vs U of Chicago Medical Center

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 11, 2017, 4:38pm

A Cook County judge has upheld most of a jury’s $53 million medical malpractice verdict awarded to the family of a boy born with cerebral palsy and an intellectual disability, and rejected an attempt by the University of Chicago Medical Center to secure a new trial to reduce or undo most of what is considered the largest malpractice verdict ever awarded in Cook County.

Bensenville homeowners, Chicago skirmish in Cook court over right to sue City Hall for O'Hare air traffic

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 10, 2017, 6:51pm

The legal dogfight between the city of Chicago and dozens of Bensenville homeowners, who say air traffic from O'Hare's busy new runway has demolished their quality of life, has returned to Cook County court, where attorneys for City Hall and the homeowners are now skirmishing over the question of precisely when the homeowners’ problems began.

Cities, counties can't enact right-to-work laws, judge says; Lincolnshire ordinance tossed

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 9, 2017, 4:32pm

Cities, villages and counties don’t have the authority under federal law to impose local right-to-work rules on employers, workers and unions, a Chicago federal judge has said, tossing out a right-to-work ordinance enacted by the village of Lincolnshire in 2015.

Judge: Museum standards mean Museum of Science & Industry owes Breedlove duty for historic car

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 6, 2017, 8:55pm

A legendary driver and former holder of world land speed records has won the chance to hit the gas on his lawsuit against Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry over the museum’s alleged mistreatment of the Spirit of America, a historic car in which he broke the land speed record, and which he loaned to the museum five decades ago.

Chicago State pays ex-finance officer $1.3M to end whistleblower lawsuit

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 6, 2017, 4:17pm

A former financial officer at Chicago State University has secured a $1.3 million settlement from the university, ending his litigation against the school over his claims he had been fired in retaliation for exposing misdeeds by the university’s administration, including former university president Wayne Watson.

Judge: Pro-life activists can sue Chicago for unequal enforcement of abortion clinic 'bubble zone' rules

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 5, 2017, 5:29pm

While declining to strike down the rules as unconstitutional, a federal judge will allow a group of pro-life activists to press ahead with a challenge asserting the city of Chicago has unfairly and improperly enforced its ordinance creating a “bubble zone” around abortion clinics in which activists are forbidden from interacting with women entering the clinics.

P.I.'s $25M defamation countersuit tossed in Alstory Simon, Northwestern U. false murder charges case

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 4, 2017, 5:17pm

Saying the cases are only “technically related" and would bog each other down, a Chicago federal judge has tossed a $25 millioncountersuit for defamation brought against the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office, a documentary filmmaker and other defendants, by a private investigator, who is one of the defendants facing a $40 million malicious prosecution lawsuit from a man, cleared of double murder charges, who claims the P.I. and a Northwestern University journalism professor coerced him into

Judge OKs suit vs After School app makers over texts; plaintiff wants decision applied vs Down To Lunch

Jonathan Bilyk Jan. 3, 2017, 6:57pm

A Chicago federal judge will allow a potential class action lawsuit to proceed against the makers of smartphone app “After School,” saying the app’s use of allegedly unauthorized invitational text messages to grow its user base could violate federal law. And this decision could have implications for another class action lawsuit against the makers of another app.

Disease linked to firefighting not 'catastrophic injury' allowing free health insurance: IL Supreme Court

Jonathan Bilyk Dec. 30, 2016, 1:11pm

A Rockford firefighter who officials determined contracted cardiomyopathy through his decades of service at the city’s fire department cannot also assert the disease should be considered a “catastrophic injury” entitling him and his wife to free health insurance under a “line-of-duty” pension, the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled.

Chicago pet store owners' defamation lawsuit tossed vs puppy mill activist; judge says 'no malice'

Jonathan Bilyk Dec. 29, 2016, 3:22pm

The owners of two Chicago pet stores who failed to overturn a Chicago ordinance prohibiting the sale of pets from so-called “puppy mills” have also fallen short in their lawsuit against a non-profit organization that helped spearhead passage of that ordinances, in which they had claimed the president of the Chicago-based Puppy Mill Project had harmed their businesses by associating their businesses with animal cruelty.

Woman adds second class action vs McDonald's over Extra Value Meal pricing

Jonathan Bilyk Dec. 29, 2016, 12:12am

A woman who claimed she overpaid for her sausage burrito meal at a McDonald’s restaurant in The Loop has become the second plaintiff asking Cook County courts to make McDonald’s and a local McDonald’s franchisee pay for charging a few cents more the meal as a bundled “Extra Value Meal,” rather than a la carte.

Judge: Chicago Elections Board must pay share of local GOP's costs for fight over commiteeman rules

Jonathan Bilyk Dec. 27, 2016, 1:12pm

A federal judge has ordered the Chicago Board of Election Commissioners and an ousted Chicago Republican Party committeeman to pay the local GOP’s attorney fees and costs for a court fight that followed the Chicago Elections Board’s attempt to force the local Republican Party to seat committemen, even if those committeemen had voted in previous years in Democratic primaries, in violation of the local party’s rules.

Roti Restaurants accused in class action of printing too many card number digits on receipts

Jonathan Bilyk Dec. 22, 2016, 4:18pm

Roti Restaurants, a Chicago-based chain specializing in fast, fresh Mediterranean-style food, has been served with a class action lawsuit, alleging the chain prints too many digits from its customers’ credit and debit cards on receipts.