DM Herra News

Federal judge rejects lawsuit attempting to 'level playing field' of Illinois elections funding

By DM Herra | Oct 29, 2018

A federal judge sided with Attorney General Lisa Madigan and the Illinois State Board of Elections in a lawsuit that sought to lift a state law that prohibits independent expenditure committees from contributing funds directly to political candidates, to "level the playing field" in an elections system the plaintiffs asserted is tilted.

Judge OKs $3.75M deal to settle class action accusing Blue Cross parent over mental health claims

By DM Herra | Oct 25, 2018

A class-action suit alleging Health Care Service Corporation, the parent company of health insurance behemoth Blue Cross Blue Shield, improperly refused to pay for mental health services, has ended in a $3.75 million settlement. Attorneys will receive $1.13 million.

Abbott Labs can't move out-of-state plaintiffs' Depakote effects lawsuits out of Cook County: Appeals panel

By DM Herra | Oct 4, 2018

Abbott Labs can't move out-of-state plaintiffs' Depakote effects lawsuits out of Cook County: Appeals panel

Federal judge rules UGG is a brand name, not a generic boot style

By DM Herra | Sep 28, 2018

Deckers Outdoor Corp., owner of the popular UGG brand, succeeded in a legal quest to prevent an Australian company from calling the sheepskin boots it sells in the U.S. “ugg boots,” as the judge said that term cannot be considered generic for those kinds of boots.

Third strike: Judge tosses racketeering suit vs Seyfarth Shaw, Northern Trust over tax shelters

By DM Herra | Sep 25, 2018

Prominent Chicago law firm Seyfarth Shaw, financial services company Northern Trust, and others have sidestepped a racketeering claim brought by a financial services provider who claimed he was misled into investing in an illegal tax shelter that eventually cost him more than $10 million in back taxes, fees, interest and penalties.

Judge slashes ‘grossly excessive’ attorney’s fees in class action settlement

By DM Herra | Sep 11, 2018

A federal judge gave a blistering condemnation of Chicago class action attorney Joseph Siprut’s request for fees in a settlement in which he had requested more than $2 million for obtaining class members settlements around $95 each.

‘It’s not really cut-and-dried’: Few legal avenues to force private nonprofits to change the way they govern

By DM Herra | Sep 7, 2018

Throughout Illinois, disputes among members of nonprofit organizations can leave members feeling frustrated and wondering where to turn. But in reality, experts in non-profit law say, there are few outside legal remedies available to them. The best bets? Evoke change from the inside, or bring in a parent organization to restore order.

Grecian Delight says insurer refuses to pay more than $12M in claims from Elk Grove plant explosion

By DM Herra | Aug 22, 2018

Elk Grove-based Greek food maker Grecian Delight has filed suit against its insurance company, claiming an insurer is crippling the company by refusing to pay out millions in claims after an explosion crippled the company’s food processing facility.

Divided IL Supreme Court: Unconstitutional convictions can't be used to end parental rights

By DM Herra | Aug 14, 2018

A deeply divided Illinois Supreme Court upheld an appellate court decision in favor of a convicted felon fighting the state’s use of his criminal history to terminate his parental rights. In a strongly worded dissension, three of the seven justices warned of judicial overreach and the unintended consequences of new precedent.

Appeals panel upholds $500K verdict for butcher vs South Side grocer for sexual, racial harassment

By DM Herra | Aug 8, 2018

A federal appeals panel has upheld a lower court’s order requiring a Chicago grocery store to pay more than $500,000 to an African American former butcher who claimed he suffered severe racial and sexual harassment at the hands of his Hispanic coworkers.

Appeals panel: Attorneys didn't do enough to merit fees topping amount paid to plaintiffs in junk fax suit

By DM Herra | Aug 2, 2018

A federal appeals court rejected a request for attorney’s fees that exceeded the amount paid to claimants in a quickly settled lawsuit over faxed ads, as judges faulted the attempt by plaintiffs’ lawyers to lay claim to one-third of a potential settlement amount, rather than basing their fee request on the actual deal.

Black pipefitters can take to trial claims union allowed contractors to discriminate when hiring

By DM Herra | Aug 1, 2018

A federal judge granted a partial victory to a group of African American union pipefitters claiming their union failed to protect them from racial discrimination, allowing them to proceed to trial on some of the claims in a lawsuit, which asserts the union allowed contractors to circumvent hiring rules to avoid hiring black workers.

Lawsuit: Expedia partner scheduled nonrefundable hotel reservations on wrong dates

By DM Herra | Jul 30, 2018

A Wisconsin man is suing travel website Expedia and its partner Eventblocks, claiming nonrefundable hotel reservations made through the sites cause users’ reservations to land on incorrect dates, causing them to miss the events, such as the Taste of Chicago, which had prompted them to book in the first place.

Court: IL tax collectors can’t ‘jump the queue’ of creditors to collect unpaid taxes from bankrupt debtors

By DM Herra | Jul 12, 2018

Illinois state tax collectors cannot jump ahead of other creditors when collecting unpaid taxes from bankrupt estates, a federal appeals panel has ruled, rejecting the Illinois Department of Revenue’s attempt to collect delinquent taxes from two bankrupt businesses whose debts far outweighed their assets.

LifeTime Fitness settles ex-trainers' wages, whistleblower class action for $700K; lawyers to get $245K

By DM Herra | Jul 9, 2018

LifeTime Fitness has agreed to pay $700,000 to settle a class action brought by a group of former trainers who sued the fitness chain over back wages and claims the company violated whistleblower laws.

Appeals panel divides over number of 'sole' causes, denies paralyzed jockey's try for new trial vs Arlington

By DM Herra | Jul 5, 2018

A divided state appellate court sided with the jury in a lawsuit against Arlington Park Racecourse by a jockey paralyzed in an accident, reversing a Cook County judge’s decision to grant a new trial because the jury had been improperly instructed to consider whether two different things could be considered the “sole” cause of an injury, simultaneously.

Ex-bookeeper can't press retaliation claims vs Hellenic Museum because never told cops about financial practices

By DM Herra | Jun 27, 2018

The former vice president of finance and operations for the National Hellenic Museum in Chicago has lost, for now, his attempt to sue the museum for allegedly wrongfully terminating him, after he claims he brought to light financial improprieties at the museum and a museum staff member claimed he stalked her.

IL Supreme Court: Clerks can't slap on extra fines, but defendants can't appeal, must sue instead

By DM Herra | Jun 11, 2018

The justices of the Illinois Supreme Court agreed court clerks lack the legal authority to tack on supposedly mandatory fines to judgments entered against defendants, when no judge ever ordered the defendants to pay the fines. However, the court divided sharply over what recourse defendants can use to stop clerks from collecting the fines, nonetheless.

Speedway worker fingerprint scan lawsuit heads back to Cook County court; Judge: No harm to plaintiff

By DM Herra | Jun 8, 2018

A lawsuit that claims Speedway gas stations didn’t follow state law in collecting employee fingerprints is back in state court, after a federal district court denied Speedway’s motion to dismiss - while at the same time agreeing that the plaintiff suffered no injury.

After being tossed in Florida, TV warranty lawsuit hopes to find a forum in IL; Best Buy asks dismissal

By DM Herra | May 30, 2018

A couple whose lawsuit against Best Buy already failed in Florida is trying again in Illinois, claiming the tech retailer’s Geek Squad service plan failed to meet the legal requirements of a warranty.

The Record Network