Trial Notebook


Collateral source rule splits court

Disagreeing with two of her Illinois Appellate Court colleagues who concluded that the collateral source rule didn’t block a defendant from claiming a setoff for a $400,000 payment from a co-defendant’s insurance company — in a combined breach of contract, mechanics lien case where (1) Süd Family Limited Partnership hired Otto Baum Co. for grading work on five lots in Peoria (2) Methodist Services Inc. purchased Lots 2 and 5 from Süd (3) Otto Baum sued to foreclose on its mechanics liens and also scored breach of contract judgments against Süd in 2009 and (4) Methodist’s title insurer, Attorney Title Guaranty, or ATG, paid $400,000 to Otto Baum for a release of the liens on Lots 2 and 5 — Justice Mary McDade dissented from the 3rd District’s decision that (a) ATG wasn’t a collateral source and (b) Süd was entitled to a release of judgment under Section 12–183 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

Lawyers' Forum

Erica-Minchella-new normal-in-real-estate-4-8-20,ph01

What will be the new normal in real estate?

Having been a foreclosure defense and short sale attorney between 2008 and around 2014, I have been monitoring the economy as it pertains to the real estate market carefully.

For the Defense


Is it time to nix Supreme Court Rule 23?

Every practitioner has had this experience: the perfect case is found; it is on all fours factually; it was decided by the appellate district in which your case is pending; it comes out the right way; and then you see it: the dreaded “-U” at the end of the case number.

Lawyers' Forum


Justice need not be delayed in days of COVID-19

In our COVID-19 world of today, everything is delayed. In Illinois and throughout the country, civil courts have been closed. The delay in bringing to ‘justice’ those cases that have had a profound effect on individuals and families leads us, trial attorneys, to continue to look for ways to serve our clients.

Insurance Matters


Negligence allegation didn’t rise to defense obligation

The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that an insurer had no duty to defend an insured accused of deliberately supplying the wrong product for use in a construction project, even though one count of a complaint against the supplier alleged negligent misrepresentation.

Legal History


April 7

See if you know what happened on this day in Legal History with Karen Conti.

Opening Statement


With Broadway lights dimmed, remember legendary Herman

The devastating novel coronavirus continues to take its deadly toll, not only through increasing number of cases and fatalities and an impact on our economy but also the almost total shutdown of cultural, theatrical and entertainment communities.

Opening Statement


A high school spin on Bard’s tragedy in ‘Teenage Dick’

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times:” the opening line of Charles Dickens’ “A Tale of Two Cities” is a reference to life in Paris circa 1859. But it can also refer to what some of us would recall from our days in high school.

Opening Statement


Lookingglass Theatre has a hit in ‘Her Honor Jane Byrne’

We have all heard the expressions “it sounded like a good idea at the time” and “the road to hell is paved with good intentions.”

Opening Statement


Constitution, women’s issues at forefront of Playhouse drama

With Sen. Elizabeth Warren bowing out of the presidential race that once had five major women candidates, Heidi Schreck’s autobiographical play, “What the Constitution Means to Me,” is more relevant than ever.

Sports Marketing Playbook


Super Bowl ads focused more on substance, less on stunts

On Super Bowl Sunday this year, on-air advertisements focused more on comedic good humor and less on political and social issues than in past years.

Opening Statement


Sitcom-like ‘Middletown’ casts vintage TV, Broadway figures

As I entered Lincoln Park’s Apollo Theater Chicago to see Dan Clancy’s comedy “Middletown — The Ride of Your Life,” I couldn’t help but wonder how GFour Productions, despite its numerous successes regionally and on Broadway, was going to “make the nut” on this one.
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