Trial Notebook


Ownership and risk considered in dog-bite case

Reversing summary judgment for the defendant in a dog-bite case under the Animal Control Act, the Illinois Appellate Court considered both of the approaches courts have taken when “analyzing whether a plaintiff has a relationship with either the animal’s legal owner or the animal itself so as to objectively exclude the plaintiff from the act’s protections.”

For the Defense

Patrick Eckler-3-23-23,ph01

Illinois Supreme Court sees enrolled bill doctrine at work

“Procedure is power.” That was what another lawyer recently told me, quoting the teachings of a civil procedure professor.

Tort Law

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Has pandemic become excuse for corporate safety lapses?

On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic. Almost instantly, countries started to seal borders, sports leagues suspended seasons, “social distancing” became a norm and our world changed in almost every manner.

Mediation Memos

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Opening session can lay path to good mediation conclusion

The classic mediation format includes an opening or joint session. This is a time when all the parties meet one another and listen to the mediator give details about how the mediation is to proceed.

Insurance Matters

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Prior policy applications found relevant to claim for rescission

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, construing Illinois law, recently evaluated the pleading requirements for an insurer seeking to rescind an insurance policy.

Cotter’s Corner

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Independent state legislature case may be moot; trans rights in focus

The U.S. Supreme Court is back in session today, with two Navajo Nation water needs cases to be argued. Tomorrow, the court hears a Lanham Act case on foreign sales and also a case on the Federal Arbitration Act, topping off this week with the Jack Daniel’s trademark matter.

Opening Statement


Broadway in Chicago has an exciting season ahead

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness,” wrote legendary author Charles Dickens in the opening lines of “A Tale of Two Cities,” published in 1859.

Opening Statement


The Oscars weren’t what they used to be

Did you happen to watch the 95th Academy Awards? If so, you were joined by more than 18 million others — myself included. On the other hand, if you missed it, you didn’t miss much. Both the program and many of the selections were disappointing.

Opening Statement

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‘Reasons: A Tribute to Earth, Wind & Fire’ rocks Chicago

It has often been said that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

Opening Statement


Are movie theaters a dying breed?

The good news is that President Joe Biden recently announced his plans to end COVID-19 emergency declarations in May — making the pandemic an endemic. The bad news is that Chicago is still feeling the aftermath of enforced quarantines, mandatory masks and isolation. It may feel it for several more years.

Sports Marketing Playbook


Beer brand shakeup, new partnerships highlight Super Bowl LVII commercials

This year’s Super Bowl had everything that’s necessary to keep football fans watching — a see-sawing score, a quarterback playing on an injured ankle and a controversial holding call in the game’s final minutes.

Opening Statement


‘Fen’ brings the plight of English women laborers to the stage

When you enter the Abelson auditorium of the Court Theatre to view renowned British playwright Caryl Churchill’s play “Fen,” you can’t help but be astounded by its monstrous set.
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