Latest News

Appeals court: IL doesn’t usurp feds’ power by making coal, gas burners subsidize Illinois nuke plants

By Dan Churney | Sep 17, 2018

A federal appellate court has affirmed a Chicago federal judge’s ruling that switched off suits by a group of electricity producers and Chicago-area power consumers, which sought to invalidate a state law requiring coal and gas burning electricity companies buy credits to prop up two failing Exelon nuclear plants, saying the law doesn’t infringe on federal regulatory prerogatives.

Appeals panel undoes $4.6M verdict for man who claimed contracted cancer from asbestos in welding rods

By Scott Holland | Sep 13, 2018

A state appeals panel has overturned a $4.6 million judgment in favor of a man who said he contracted mesothelioma by inhaling asbestos fibers while working near welding rods.

Mt. Carmel Missionary Baptist Church accuses CEDA of wrongly denying appeal of site suspension

By Noddy A. Fernandez | Sep 11, 2018

Mt. Carmel Missionary Baptist Church is suing a community action agency, citing alleged breach of contract.

Appeals panel: Parents can sue paint makers for kids' lead screening costs, even though covered by Medicaid

By Dan Churney | Sep 11, 2018

A Chicago appellate court has overturned a lower court’s dismissal of a class action by parents who wanted paint companies to pay for mandatory tests of their children to see if the children had lead in their blood, finding the parents still hold the right to sue the companies, even though Medicaid footed the bill.

Judge backs recused judge's decision to OK loan officers' wage class action vs American Bank & Trust

By Cook County Record | Sep 10, 2018

A federal judge has confirmed another recused judge's decision earlier this spring to refuse to end a class action brought by a group of bank loan officers, who accused their employer, American Bank and Trust, of shorting them wages and commissions.

Appeals panel tosses Thrivent's attempts to shut down Illinois Securities Dept. investigation

By Gabriel Neves | Sep 7, 2018

A state appeals panel has dealt a setback to Thrivent Investment Management's efforts to thwart a state investigation into the company's activities.

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.

Appeals panel hints not willing to reverse most Cook Co. Sheriff's firings under illegal merit board

By Scott Holland | Aug 31, 2018

Saying they wished to shy away from potentially overthrowing untold numbrs of otherwise purportedly proper terminations and employee disciplinary actions within the Cook County Sheriff’s Office, a state appeals panel has upheld the termination of a Cook County Sheriff’s employee even though the merit board the sheriff uses to review employee discipline and terminations was illegally constituted at the time the officer was fired.

Appeals panel: Retirement home liable under federal housing law for residents' harassment of lesbian resident

By Scott Holland | Aug 30, 2018

A federal appeals panel has ruled an independent and assisted living facility can be held liable for a harassment suffered by a lesbian resident at the hands of other residents, because of her sexuality.

Appeals court rules Cook County Sheriff Dart shouldn’t be blamed for loss of jail inmates’ property

By Dan Churney | Aug 27, 2018

A Chicago federal appeals has refused to upset a jury’s verdict against onetime Cook County Jail inmates, who alleged in a lawsuit the sheriff violated their constitutional rights by not protecting their possessions when they were booked, saying plaintiffs failed to show any crime was committed, much less a breach of their rights.

Appeals panel: Property preservation companies OK to leave door hangers steering owners in default to collectors

By Dani Hemmat | Aug 24, 2018

In what may be a defining decision for property preservation companies, a federal appeals panel has affirmed that property preservation companies are not acting as debt collectors when they leave a door hanger on a property they have serviced directing property owners who have defaulted on loans to contact a debt servicer or collector.

Appeals panel: Caterpillar didn't discriminate vs older workers by nixing benefits plan to boost early retirement

By Scott Holland | Aug 24, 2018

A federal appeals panel in Chicago has ruled Caterpillar can’t be sued for age discrimination simply because it changed a benefits plan that led to widespread worker retirement.

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.

Appeals court lets pilots’ suit take off again, says fliers’ union may have breached representation duty

By Dan Churney | Aug 21, 2018

A dismissed suit by United Airlines pilot instructors, which alleged their union unfairly divided retroactive pay among different pilot categories, is flying again, courtesy of a Chicago federal appeals panel that ruled a lower court should not have grounded the suit, because the instructors plausibly argued the union gave them the short end of the stick.

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.

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