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Media and police gathered around the New York court Monday ahead of former President Donald J. Trump's possible indictment. With Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg thought to be eyeing charges in the alleged payment of hush money during the 2016 campaign, local law enforcement officials are bracing for the public-safety ramifications of an unprecedented prosecution of a former American president. – Photo by Sipa USA (Sipa via AP Images)

In Trump probe, NYC grand jury hearing from final witnesses

A grand jury was hearing from final witnesses Monday in the investigation into Donald Trump as law enforcement officials accelerated security preparations in advance of a possible indictment and as fellow Republicans staked out positions in a criminal probe expected to shake up the 2024 presidential race.
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Supreme Court remembering Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a champion for women’s rights whose death ahead of the 2020 election allowed the Supreme Court to become more conservative, will be remembered during ceremonies Friday at the high court.
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Mobile sports bets booms in some states 5 years after high court ruling

The stakes are higher in Ohio this year for March Madness — and not just because it’s a regional host for the first round of the men’s NCAA basketball tournament.
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Illinois enacts mandatory paid leave ‘for any reason’

Illinois will become one of three states to require employers to offer paid time off for any reason after Gov. J.B. Pritzker signed a law Monday that will take effect next year.

How I Did It

Chicago civil rights attorney pivots to launch Jamaican resort

Longtime civil rights attorney Dana L. Kurtz traded the courtroom for an ocean view when she left her practice in 2019 to launch a boutique hotel in Jamaica.

22 new Cook County associate judges named

The Circuit Court of Cook County named 22 new associate judges Monday.

Cook County jury awards $3.8M for injuries after anesthesia technique

A Cook County jury awarded $3.8 million to a man who alleged he sustained injuries from deliberate hypotension, a technique that lowers a person’s blood pressure, while he was under anesthesia for more than 13 hours during lumbar surgery.

Accountant can’t sue former employer on city’s behalf over taxes

A former accountant for a retail leasing company did not have the authority to file a qui tam action against it on behalf of the city for allegedly owing more than $16 million in unpaid lease taxes, an appeals court panel ruled.

Lawmakers advance measure to regulate ride-shares as ‘common carriers’

Lawmakers are considering a bill that would treat ride-share companies such as Uber and Lyft as “common carriers,” opening them up to the same level of liability as other forms of public transportation.

Courts & Cases

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Contributors

Trial Notebook

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Lawyer’s email allegedly deterred witnesses

Denying a motion for sanctions against Dentons U.S. LLP for allegedly violating a rule that prohibits lawyers from requesting that a witness “refrain from voluntarily giving relevant information to another party,” a federal judge in Salt Lake City acknowledged that the practical effect of an email from a Dentons attorney to former employees of the firm’s client was to dissuade them from continuing to communicate with the defendants.

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.

For the Defense

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State ‘speedy trial’ legislation for civil cases is problematic

As the Illinois legislative session grinds on, an important deadline passed on Friday with both House and Senate bills needing to be approved by the committees in their house of origin.

Employment Law

Seattle at forefront in adding ‘caste’ as a protected class

Seattle recently became the first U.S. city to add “caste” to its list of categories protected from discrimination. The law defines “caste” as “a system of rigid social stratification characterized by hereditary status, endogamy, and social barriers sanctioned by custom, law, or religion.”

Opening Statement

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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

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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

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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

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‘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.

Social Scene

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Women’s empowerment event returns

BatesCarey revived its event “Tea Talk: Women Empowering Women” last week for the first time since the pandemic began. Led by attorneys Abigail Rocap and Allyson Spacht, the firm hosted “Let’s Talk About Equality: Overcoming Obstacles to Women in Leadership.” Speakers included Julie Cutter, president of Women Helping Others; Mary Robinson, partner at Robinson, Stewart, Montgomery & Doppke, and Laura Zaroski, managing director of the Law Firms Group at Gallagher. Photo courtesy BatesCarey
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Wallach accepts Les Turner foundation award

Brian S. Wallach and Sandra Abrevaya, winners of the Harvey and Bonny Gaffen award, speak at the Hope Through Caring Gala benefiting the Les Turner ALS Foundation. Wallach is an attorney at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and former staffer for President Barack Obama who advocates for ALS treatments. Photo by Jean Lachat
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Attorney honored with memorial award

Hall Prangle & Schoonveld honored partner Amy Kane, who died in March 2022 after an illness, by creating a memorial award in her name. Shelley Doi-Taketa, a partner in the firm’s Salt Lake City office, was its first recipient. Shown at an event marking the occasion are Salt Lake City partner Tawni Anderson, from left, Chicago partner Eric Schoonveld, Doi-Taketa and Chicago partner Jennifer Ries-Buntain. Photo courtesy of Hall Prangle & Schoonveld
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CDEL honors volunteers

The Center for Disability & Elder Law celebrated its 2023 Winter Awards Benefit, “Light Up the Loop,” at Baker McKenzie in late February. Shown from left are award recipients Crofton Kelly, Addison Braendel and Stephen S. Phalen; CDEL Governing Board president Theresa Jaffe; Cook County Clerk Karen Yarbrough, recipient of the Impact Award; benefit chair Andrew Lillis; honorees Shane Kelly and Lisa Kistler; CDEL executive director Caroline Manley and benefit vice chair Terri Ahrens. Photo courtesy of CDEL

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