Jonathan Bilyk News

Cook County judge convicted of bank fraud resigns, after federal judge refuses new trial

By Jonathan Bilyk | Sep 12, 2018

A Cook County judge convicted of bank fraud has resigned her position, after a Chicago federal judge refused her requests to overturn the conviction and give her a new trial.

Judge: Settlement talks begun in mass action vs Abbvie, others over Androgel, testosterone drugs

By Jonathan Bilyk | Sep 10, 2018

A federal judge has put a hold on any further proceedings in the massive, years-long nationwide legal action against Abbvie and other makers of so-called testosterone replacement therapy drugs, saying he wants to give both sides time to complete a potential settlement drug to permanently end the litigation.

Judges nix consumer antitrust vs steelmakers; Production chain too complex to undergird sprawling class action

By Jonathan Bilyk | Sep 7, 2018

While noting the plaintiffs had presented statements which could indicate price-fixing activity, a federal appeals panel has refused to melt down a lower court’s decision to slice up a potentially massive class action lawsuit accusing U.S. steelmakers of conspiring to jack up prices for raw steel.

Bandas firm offers to be barred from practicing law in IL to end Edelson suit over 'serial objectors'

By Jonathan Bilyk | Sep 5, 2018

A Texas-based law firm accused of improperly using proxy Illinois attorneys to covertly manage lawsuits in Illinois intended to allegedly essentially extort payments from other lawyers trying to close out class action settlements, has agreed to accept a court order barring them from practicing law in Illinois.

Settlements end diamond wholesalers' fraud, defamation disputes; lawyer accused of 'extortion ring'

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 24, 2018

A legal dispute, in which one diamond wholesaler allegedly falsely accused another of fraud, has ended in a settlement to resolve a potential multi-million dollar defamation lawsuit, amid accusations the plaintiff in the original fraud suit was acting in coordination with an attorney facing a racketeering action over claims he has participated in an alleged scheme to use alleged fraud lawsuits to allegedly pressure jewelers into settlements.

Pharma defendants seek to kick suburbs' opioid suits to federal court; Say center on federal drug control questions

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 23, 2018

Saying the lawsuit raises legal questions that shouldn't be dealt with in state court, one of the country’s largest pharmaceutical distributors – and one that stands as a defendant in many of the lawsuits now pending in courts across the country over the so-called opioid epidemic – has asked a federal judge to prevent a group of Chicago suburban communities from suing an array of drug manufacturers and distributors in Cook County Circuit Court.

Appeals court tosses $3M verdict vs GSK, says FDA, not drugmaker, controlled Paxil warning label

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 22, 2018

A federal appeals panel has tossed out a $3 million verdict vs GSK for the widow of a Chicago lawyer who committed suicide after taking the generic equivalent of GSK's drug, Paxil. The judges said the company can't be held responsible for language on the warning label when that language was controlled by the FDA.

Democratic donor Hull asks to limit deposition to thwart political fishing expedition by Madigan lawyers

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 21, 2018

A former Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate seat ultimately captured by Barack Obama has asked a federal judge to block lawyers for Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan from using a forthcoming deposition as a fishing expedition to dig up political intelligence on potential political opponents of the powerful chairman of the state Democratic Party.

Judge pulls plug on Viamedia antitrust suit vs Comcast over cable TV spot ads

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 18, 2018

Saying she saw the legal action as little more than an attempt by a competitor to “force” Comcast to do business with them, a Chicago federal judge has pulled the plug on an antitrust legal fight over whether Comcast had used its position to improperly squelch competition in the market for local spot cable TV advertising.

Home energy use info gleaned from 'smart meters' is 4th Amend 'search,' but not 'unreasonable': Appeals panel

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 16, 2018

Noting their conclusions could change based on what other cities and utilities may choose to do with information gleaned from homeowners’ energy use, a panel of federal appeals court judges has found Naperville can continue collecting and storing electricity usage data transmitted directly by so-called “smart meters,” even though the data harvest essentially amounts to a governmental search under the Fourth Amendment.

Lawsuit: Landlord Jones Lang LaSalle forces tenants to use union labor, pay more for 'kickbacks'

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 15, 2018

Saying the landlord’s acquiescence to the labor unions’ demands amounts to an illegal conspiracy to generate kickbacks for union contractors, a former tenant of an office high-rise owned by Jones Lang LaSalle in Chicago’s Loop has delivered a class action lawsuit against its ex-landlord, demanding the company be made to pay back potentially thousands of current and former tenants throughout the city for forcing them to use more expensive union labor when renovating their offices or moving in or out of office space in the JLL-managed buildings.

Bankruptcy judge OKs Oakfabco's liquidation plan withdrawal, but blasts lawyers; Oakfabco requests mediation

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 9, 2018

Even as the company has requested the chance to head to mediation to resolve differences between its insurers and trial lawyers representing tens of thousands of asbestos claimants, a federal bankruptcy judge has granted bankrupt boiler maker Oakfabco’s request to abruptly withdraw its liquidation proposal, leaving unsettled for now how the company will continue through bankruptcy and wind down those asbestos-related personal injury claims.

Jury deals $315M verdict to casino tech maker who said rival used patent litigation to stifle competition

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 7, 2018

A group of casino technology manufacturers have hit a legal jackpot, as a Chicago federal jury has dealt them a verdict potentially worth more than $300 million, amid their ongoing antitrust battle against a rival manufacturer accused of misusing patents to stifle competition.

Lincolnshire: Taxes different from union dues; asks judge to toss union suit over 'anti-union' lobbying funds

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 3, 2018

Saying governments are different from labor unions and other private organizations, a north suburban village and an organization that lobbies on behalf of Illinois city and village governments has asked a federal judge to dismiss a union-backed lawsuit asserting the rights of union members are violated by local governments which use tax money to fund lobbyists to seek reforms opposed by unions.

Orland fire distict didn't violate alarm company's rights by inking exclusive deal with rival vendor: Judge

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 3, 2018

A federal judge has ruled a southwest suburban fire protection district didn’t violate the rights of a company that installs and monitors commercial fire alarms by first lobbying the villages of Orland Park and Orland Hills to require the installation of a certain kind of fire alarm system, and then inking a contract with a competing company to provide the equipment needed for those alarm systems, effectively closing off their district to competitors.

Judge tosses disciplined officers' suit over Cook sheriff's Merit Board makeup; Lawyer: Proves 'circle of no relief'

By Jonathan Bilyk | Aug 1, 2018

Saying the lawsuit was premature, a Cook County judge has dismissed a legal action brought by Cook County sheriff’s officers, who contend disciplinary cases against them should be tossed because the disciplinary board’s members weren’t legally appointed at the time the disciplinary cases were filed. A lawyer for the disciplined officers says the decision actually bolsters a parallel case brought in federal court.

Groupon, 3rd party sellers can't be required to offer ADA accessible seating, lodging options: Judge

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jul 31, 2018

A federal judge has shut down a disability discrimination lawsuit against Groupon, saying the online bargains site should not be considered a place of public accommodations, and so can’t be required to sell tickets for event seating or vouchers for hotel rooms accessible to those with disabilities.

Lawsuit: City rules allow Ald. Burke to turn Chicago Workers Comp office into patronage 'army'

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jul 31, 2018

Saying the mayor’s refusal to wrest control of the city’s workers compensation division has allowed Chicago’s most powerful alderman to turn the office into a political patronage “army,” giving preferential treatment to loyal city workers, a lawsuit brought by a city worker who helped expose the Hired Trucks scandal has asked a federal judge to declare unconstitutional Ald. Ed Burke’s management of the office that handles Chicago city workers’ workers comp claims, and force Mayor Rahm Emanuel to oversee operations there, despite city rules delegating the task to Burke.

Appeals panel: $15M fees not too big for lawyers behind $76M Caribbean cruise telemarketing settlement

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jul 27, 2018

A federal appeals panel will allow a group of Chicago lawyers to keep their potential $15 million to $18 million payday for their work in securing a $76 million settlement from a cruise line and others accused of using nonprofit surveys to mask telemarketing calls, as judges said the size of the fee award doesn’t necessarily mean it is too large.

Harvey, pension funds reach deal on dividing up embargoed state money, end court fight over pension funding

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jul 27, 2018

In a deal that could set a precedent for other financially struggling municipalities to follow, the city of Harvey has reached a deal with its police and firefighter pension funds to end a court fight over how much of the money Harvey gets from the state of Illinois the city should be allowed to spend on current day-to-day operations, rather than police and fire department retirees’ pensions.

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