Illinois First District Appellate Court News

Decision for Soldier Field lot operator SP Plus in woman's trip-and-fall suit overturned on appeal

By Chandra Lye | Aug 10, 2018

A state appeals panel overruled a Cook County judge, finding a woman may be allowed to continue with her personal injurylawsuit against the company that manages a parking lot near Soldier Field, as they said the Cook County judge may have erred in finding the low pole over which the woman allegedly tripped while leaving an event may not have been as open and obvious as the lower court judge believed.

Appeals court: Chicago can't be sued by runner who claimed was hurt because 606 Trail too narrow

By Cook County Record | Aug 10, 2018

An Illinois state appeals panel has upheld a Cook County judge's decision to dismiss a lawsuit brought against the city of Chicago and Chicago Park District by a woman who was struck by a bicyclist while running on the 606 Trail, and who argued the city should be held responsible because, she argued, the trail was too narrow to accommodate both bicycles and foot traffic.

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.

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.

Appeals court douses Oak Lawn’s attempt to require its firefighters live in Illinois

By Dan Churney | Jul 9, 2018

A Chicago appeals panel has affirmed a Cook County judge’s ruling that southwest suburban Oak Lawn cannot require village firefighters to live in Illinois, because the village doesn’t require fire department applicants to live in any geographic area to be hired in the first place.

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.

Appellate: South Loop condo developers' suit vs ex-lawyers over parking space flap not too late

By Cook County Record | Jun 29, 2018

A state appeals court has given a new lease to a legal malpractice suit brought by the developers of a South Loop condo building, saying the plaintiffs were not too late in filing their legal action amid a squabble with the condo building's association over parking space rights six years after the developers thought required legal documents had been filed.

Appeals panel: Gidwitz, family, associates still owe $13M in legal fees to former Ungaretti lawyers

By Scott Holland | Jun 26, 2018

A prominent Illinois businessman and Republican, who was nominated by President Trump to serve as U.S. ambassador to Belgium, and some of his associates remain on the hook to pay millions of dollars in legal fees after an appeals panel upheld a judicial decision.

Appeals panel: 'Obnoxious' condo owner has right to free speech, to view evidence when accused by association

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jun 21, 2018

While condo associations are not extensions of the government, they still must respect the First Amendment rights of condo owners, and must disclose evidence to those accused of violating association rules before assessing fines, a divided state appeals panel has ruled. However, a dissenting justice warned the ruling had the potential to bog the courts down in near endless streams of intra-condo association squabbles.

Appeals court: No arbitration over claims Personnel Staffing transferred funds to sidestep arbitration award

By Kyla Asbury | Jun 20, 2018

A state appeals court has refused to send to arbitration a dispute between insurer Zurich American and Personnel Staffing Group, in which Zurich claims PSG attempted to transfer more than $10 million to avoid paying an arbitration award.

Justice P. Scott Neville takes oath of office, seat on state Supreme Court

By Cook County Record | Jun 15, 2018

P. Scott Neville has taken his seat on the state’s high court, replacing Justice Charles Freeman, the state’s first African American Supreme Court justice, who has retired.

Nickel & Dime: eBay, online retailers warn SCOTUS could unleash lawsuit torrent vs sellers over taxes

By Dan Churney | Jun 7, 2018

Nickel & Dime: eBay, online retailers warn SCOTUS ruling could unleash torrent of lawsuits accusing sellers over taxes

Appeals court upholds denial of line-of-duty pension to Maywood officer hurt in ordinary car crash

By Kyla Asbury | Jun 6, 2018

CHICAGO — The First District Appellate Court of Illinois upheld a decision that a police officer's injury could not be proven as a line-of-duty disability, meaning the officer cannot receive a line-of-duty disability pension.

Environmental groups' challenge to Illiana Tollway project rejected by Illinois appeals panel

By Scott Holland | Jun 1, 2018

A state appeals court has upheld a lower court’s ruling against environmental groups suing to block the Illiana Tollway project.

IL appeals panel: Email from Chicago lawyer doesn't mean court fight between OH firm, NV biz belongs in Cook County

By Kyla Asbury | May 29, 2018

A state appeals court has shot down a Cook County judge's ruling, finding the judge was wrong to assert Chicago was the proper venue for a law firm headquartered in Ohio to sue a company based in Nevada, even though an email sent from Chicago was the only connection the defendant claimed it had in Illinois.

IL Supreme Court: Government can't use change in law to deny info requests filed before law changed

By Dan Churney | May 29, 2018

The Illinois Supreme Court has overruled lower court judges who had decided an Illinois state agency could wait until after a law is changed to use the change in the law to deny a public information request submitted before the law changed.

Appeals panel: 'Jurisdiction by necessity' not enough to keep GE on asbestos lawsuit in Illinois

By Scott Holland | May 23, 2018

A state appeals panel said jurisdictional issues should have allowed General Electric to be dismissed from a personal injury complaint involving asbestos exposure.

Appeals panel reverses decision to toss ex-Malcolm X College admin's retaliatory firing suit

By Charmaine Little | May 18, 2018

Saying they believed a fired Malcolm X College administrator had demonstrated he was fired for reporting actions which "defrauded ... the taxpayer," an Illinois appellate panel has reversed a lower court’s decision to dismiss a retaliatory discharge suit over claims he was fired after raising concerns about the school allegedly hiring unqualified professors.

Charles Freeman, first African-American IL Sup Ct justice, retires; Appellate justice Neville appointed to replace

By Jonathan Bilyk | May 17, 2018

After nearly three decades on Illinois’ high court, Justice Charles Freeman, the first black justice to serve on the Illinois Supreme Court and a former chief justice of the court, has retired. Illinois First District Appellate Court P. Scott Neville has been appointed to serve the remainder of Freeman's term through 2020.

Appeals court: CTA must negotiate with union before imposing rules to prevent repeat of O'Hare Blue Line derailment

By DM Herra | May 16, 2018

A state appeals court has upheld a ruling forbidding the Chicago Transit Authority from unilaterally imposing new work rules without first negotiating with its workers’ union, even if the new rules are intended to protect public safety – such as rules the CTA implemented to prevent another train derailment similar to the one that resulted in an L train climbing an escalator at O’Hare International Airport.

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