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Locke Lord LLP News

Attorneys say debt collection agencies must watch language after federal court ruling

A recent federal court decision underscores the importance of minding the verbs used in communications from debt collectors.

New York court considers Illinois biometrics data case against Take-Two Interactive Software

A New York federal appeals court will consider the reach and scope of an Illinois privacy law now being used by many plaintiff attorneys to target many different businesses with class action lawsuits alleging technical violations.

Bank of America, others prevail in class-action suit over consumer privacy

A federal judge in Illinois has ruled that Bank of America and other banks were not in violation of consumer privacy acts and dismissed a class-action suit accusing the bank of improperly distributing the confidential information of homeowners who had borrowed mortgage loans.

$17.5M deal announced to end cell phone call class action vs Ocwen Loan Servicing; lawyers to ask $5M

A Chicago federal judge has been asked to sign off on a settlement worth $17.5 million - and worth perhaps as much as $5.7 million for lawyers - to end a class action lawsuit over alleged improper cell phone calls.

Judge: Not enough proof tying suburban Palestinian groups to Hamas to enforce $156M judgment

A Chicago federal judge has tossed a lawsuit against suburban Palestinian aid groups, which alleged the groups were disguised versions of defunct Hamas support organizations that owed a $156 million judgment to a couple whose son was killed by Hamas in a terrorist attack in Israel, saying there was not enough evidence to show the new groups were alter egos of the old ones.

Court grants class status in case of Illinois inmates claiming substandard health care

A group of Illinois prison inmates will be allowed to move forward with their class action suit claiming health care provided to inmates in the Illinois Department of Corrections violates constitutional standards.

City levies higher fees to register vacant buildings, sock lenders, loan servicers

The city of Chicago has amended a city code to reduce the number of vacant buildings throughout Chicago, socking lenders and mortgage servicers with higher fees in the process, even as those lenders navigate the slow county judicial foreclosure process. 

Customer contract provision sends spam text message class action vs Jackson Hewitt to arbitration

A suburban Marengo man will not – for now - be able to press his claim income tax return preparer Jackson Hewitt, and its partners American Express and Restaurant.com, illegally spammed his phone with text messages, after a Chicago federal judge ruled the agreement he signed with Jackson Hewitt also mandated all disputes over the contract be handled through arbitration.

Alma Lasers says customer hasn't paid invoices for purchased cosmetic laser equipment

A maker of cosmetic laser equipment is suing Yigazu Isthetics and Wellness Center, citing alleged breach of contract.

Judge: Ditto Trade founder Fox slapped for not paying legal bills of whistleblower ex-Ditto CEO

A Chicago federal judge is holding the founder of a defunct Chicago online brokerage firm in contempt of court for failing to pay the legal costs racked up by a former CEO, who successfully sued the founder for defaming and firing him after he blew the whistle on alleged financial finagling. 

Judge orders Ditto Trade to pay fired whistleblowing ex-CEO $2.7 million

A Chicago federal judge has ordered Chicago online brokerage firm Ditto Trade to pay $2.7 million to its former chief executive officer, for allegedly firing him because he informed federal securities regulators of possible misconduct by a high official with the firm.

John Crane renews demands judge reject 'revolutionary' sanctions sought by Ford over asbestos case actions

Lawyers for John Crane Inc. have again asked a Cook County judge to reject demands by Ford Motors and other asbestos co-defendants to punish Crane, saying Ford has asked the court to do "something nothing short of revolutionary" in response to allegations Crane allowed plaintiffs' lawyers to use it as a “shill” to prevent other defendants from moving asbestos cases out of Cook County's courts.

John Crane says Ford lawyers' asbestos sanctions motion a 'witch hunt' to advance 'implausible conspiracy theory'

A manufacturer named as a defendant in about 75,000 asbestos personal injury cases nationwide has pushed back against a request for sanctions from lawyers representing Ford Motor Company, who have accused their client of being a “shill” to prevent other defendants from transferring cases out of Cook County Circuit Court, saying Ford has no basis to support an “implausible conspiracy theory” serving as a pretense for the chance to fish for privileged information.

$2 million verdict vs debt collector stands after judge says collector took bad risk in ignoring FDIC loan mod deal

A debt collection company will not get a new trial or any reduction in a $2 million verdict it was ordered to pay to a woman who fended off a foreclosure action brought by the collector and who then sued the collector for improperly refusing to abide by a loan modification agreement the woman had negotiated with the FDIC before the collector purchased her debt.

Templeton Rye whiskey marketing settlement holds $36 for consumers, thousands for named plaintiffs, $750K for lawyers

Drinkers of Templeton Rye have another month to submit their claims to get up to a $36 share of a $2.5 million settlement the company has reached to end a class action over the company’s allegedly deceptive marketing tactics. The class representatives and other named plaintiffs in the action, and the attorneys who represented them, however, are guaranteed to get quite a bit more, regardless of how many of Templeton Rye’s customers can verify they bought the whiskey since 2006.

Canadian Pacific takes Quebec train disaster cases from Cook County to federal court

Families of victims of a fiery oil-fueled train derailment and explosion that claimed 47 lives in a town on the eastern edge of Canada’s Quebec Province will need to press their wrongful death claims in federal court, after lawyers for Canadian Pacific Railway and other corporate defendants asked to transfer cases from local to federal jurisdiction.

Judge: No fraud claims, but Kraft can press contract suit vs supplier of buttermilk spray used for cheese powder

Kraft Foods' breach of contract lawsuit against a supplier lost steam this week when a federal judge in Chicago granted the defendant’s request to dismiss three of the four counts it faced. Northfield-based Kraft is suing SunOpta Ingredients, of Edina, Minn., which had sold Kraft a dried buttermilk product for more than 20 years until 2013, when Kraft allegedly learned SunOpta was no longer selling a pure buttermilk powder.

Templeton Rye removes deceptive marketing suit to federal court

A dispute over the true birthplace of an Iowa whiskey brand could move to federal court, even as the truth about where that brand is actually produced has rye connoisseurs doing a spit-take.

Defendants urge Seventh Circuit to uphold $261K in sanctions against Prenda attorneys

The defendants in a downstate Illinois computer hacking case brought by attorneys with the now-dissolved Prenda Law firm assert “this case could be the poster child for abusive litigation.”

Empire Today withdraws RICO lawsuit vs ex-executives it accused of defrauding company

Empire Today, an iconic seller and installer of flooring and window treatments, has withdrawn a lawsuit against two of its executives it had accused of working with an insurer to defraud the company by diverting workers compensation insurance payments.