Jonathan Bilyk News

From Legal Newsline

Report: Surging securities class actions over corporate M&A, 'adverse events,' a growing 'litigation racket'

By Jonathan Bilyk | Oct 25, 2018

Saying the trend carries substantial costs for investors and the entire economy, a new report is calling for reforms to tamp down on the growing surge in the number of so-called securities class action lawsuits filed against companies over mergers, acquisitions or stock price drops - a phenomenon the report author called a "litigation racket."

From Legal Newsline

How much do lawsuits cost you? $3,300 per household, $429B nationwide, study says

By Jonathan Bilyk | Oct 24, 2018

Across the U.S., Americans pay hefty costs for lawsuits, with the price tag stretching from the courthouses to the most basic levels of American life, adding thousands of dollars each year to Americans’ household budget costs, according to a new study of tort litigation costs.

Customers should read insurance policies, not wait to sue til denied coverage, high court rules

By Jonathan Bilyk | Oct 22, 2018

Saying customers have an obligation to read and understand the terms of their insurance policies, the Illinois state Supreme Court has rejected the try by a couple to make their American Family Insurance agent pay for providing them with a policy that didn’t protect them against a defamation lawsuit, even though they had specifically asked the agent to obtain that coverage for them.

From Cook County Record

Pritzker campaign accused in lawsuit of discrimination, harassment against black, Latino campaign staffers

By Jonathan Bilyk | Oct 16, 2018

Saying the Illinois gubernatorial frontrunner’s campaign has routinely “herded” and “marginalized” its workers of color, a group of African American and Latino workers for Illinois Democratic gubernatorial nominee JB Pritzker has sued Pritzker’s campaign organization for discrimination and harassment.

From Cook County Record

Choosing a hat: Proposal seeks to ease home closing costs by rewriting rules for IL lawyers who sell title insurance

By Jonathan Bilyk | Sep 28, 2018

A new legislative proposal would force real estate lawyers in Illinois who also serve as title insurance agents to 'choose which hat they will wear' in a home sale transaction, in a bid to reduce the typical closing costs paid by Illinois homeowners, and bring those costs more in line with the national average. But the proposal has drawn fire from lawyers and their associations, accusing supporters of the bill of unfairly 'scapegoating' lawyers for Illinois' relatively more expensive title insurance costs.

From Cook County Record

Post-Janus Landscape: Decision will impact union coffers, membership; more litigation on its way, say lawyers

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jul 2, 2018

In the wake of the U.S Supreme Court’s landmark decision to declare unconstitutional forced union fees, the legal and political landscape will undoubtedly change. But precisely what will change, and how and when those changes will roll out, remains anybody’s guess.

From Cook County Record

US Supreme Court: Forced collection of 'fair share' union fees unconstitutional, violates workers' free speech rights

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jun 27, 2018

Compelling non-union government workers to pay so-called “fair share fees” to unions they do not wish to join violates the First Amendment speech rights of non-union workers and is unconstitutional, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled, finding in favor of an Illinois state worker who had sued to end the fees, also known as agency fees, in Illinois and across the country.

From Cook County Record

Appeals judges: Chicago not right court for John Crane's asbestos fraud RICO claims vs Simon Greenstone, Shein Law

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jun 4, 2018

A federal appeals panel in Chicago has agreed industrial seals and couplings maker John Crane Inc. should be afforded the chance to air its claims two law firms allegedly engaged in racketeering and fraud in the way they pressed asbestos-related personal injury claims against the company in the past. However, the judges also agreed with lower court judges that Chicago federal court is not the right place for John Crane can pursue its claims.

From Cook County Record

IL Bar Assn: State overreach threatens ability of property tax lawyers to work; State: Lawyers can't be appraisers

By Jonathan Bilyk | May 31, 2018

A Cook County judge could soon weigh in on a legal fight between Illinois’ largest association of lawyers and a state regulatory agency, over the question of whether that state agency has the authority to effectively bar Illinois property tax lawyers from offering estimates of a property’s value when representing property owners before a state or county property tax appeal board.

From Cook County Record

Trial lawyer panel: Plaintiffs' lawyers adapting strategies to fit post-BristolMyersSquibb legal landscape

By Jonathan Bilyk | May 30, 2018

While the U.S. Supreme Court's Bristol Myers Squibb ruling has resulted in some big wins for businesses targeted by the plaintiffs' bar, new strategies and theories deployed by plaintiffs' lawyers may be blunting the further impact of that decision, despite high hopes from some it would largely thwart the ability of out-of-state plaintiffs to sue out-of-state defendants in a favorable court forum.

From Cook County Record

Charles Freeman, first African-American IL Sup Ct justice, retires; Appellate justice Neville appointed to replace

By Jonathan Bilyk | May 17, 2018

After nearly three decades on Illinois’ high court, Justice Charles Freeman, the first black justice to serve on the Illinois Supreme Court and a former chief justice of the court, has retired. Illinois First District Appellate Court P. Scott Neville has been appointed to serve the remainder of Freeman's term through 2020.

From Cook County Record

Fair Maps Amendment not called for vote, deadline passes to place it on November 2018 ballot

By Jonathan Bilyk | May 7, 2018

Illinois voters will not get a chance to weigh in on the question of whether Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan and other legislative leaders in the Democratic-controlled Illinois General Assembly should continue to hold the keys to drawing the state's legislative district maps, after the leaders of the state House and Senate refused to call a vote for a constitutional amendment designed to curtail their influence over the process.

From Cook County Record

IL appeals court upholds dismissal of class action challenging Chicago red light camera program law

By Jonathan Bilyk | Feb 14, 2018

Saying state law designates Chicago’s red light and speed camera enforcement programs as something different from ordinary traffic laws, a state appeals court has again handed a defeat to a class action attempting to overthrow the city’s automated traffic citation program, which annually adds millions of dollars in fines from ticketed motorists to the city’s coffers.

From Cook County Record

Man suing Madigan asks court to order release of inspector general's 2014 report detailing Speaker's clout

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jan 29, 2018

A former candidate who is suing Illinois House Speaker Michael J. Madigan and some of his supporters for allegedly using political tricks to sabotage his campaign, is now locked in a fight in Chicago federal court to secure the release of a 2014 inspector general’s report his lawyer says is needed to shed light on how the longest serving state house speaker in U.S. history and his political organization work, to help substantiate the candidate’s claims.

GOP state lawmakers join Supreme Court brief asking to reject challenge to compulsory union fees

By Jonathan Bilyk | Jan 23, 2018

A group of nine Republicans currently serving in the Illinois General Assembly, including two rookie state lawmakers, have signed their names to a brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court, asking the court to uphold the state’s ability to allow unions to extract fees from government employees who don’t wish to join a union, arguing the country’s founding federalist principles should allow the 50 states to decide such policy questions for themselves.

Simmons among firms chosen to represent Cook County in opioid litigation; Partner Hanly selected to lead plaintiffs in MDL

By Jonathan Bilyk | Dec 28, 2017

CHICAGO - Cook County, the second largest county in the U.S., has added its name to the ever-growing list of local governments demanding the makers of some of the most prescribed opioid painkillers pay out, saying the companies owe big money for costs the county has incurred in treating painkiller addiction and dealing with its aftermath at the county’s hospitals and other institutions.

Cook County repeals 'pop tax,' but lawsuits it spurred are still pending - though perhaps not for long

By Jonathan Bilyk | Oct 12, 2017

CHICAGO - The Cook County “pop tax” will soon be a thing of the past, after the Cook County Board buckled to public pressure and repealed the widely panned and unpopular penny-per-ounce tax on soda and a wide range of other sweetened drinks.

SCOTUS to take up Illinois case challenging power of unions to collect fees from non-union state workers

By Jonathan Bilyk | Sep 29, 2017

The U.S. Supreme Court will again wade into the question of whether public sector worker unions can force government employees who don’t wish to join their union to still pay fees, ostensibly for collective bargaining representation.

Posner departure sets stage for potential political fight over future of Seventh Circuit

By Jonathan Bilyk | Sep 12, 2017

After decades of relative stability, the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago could soon undergo an extensive makeover, making the court potentially the next battleground in the fight for the future of the nation’s judiciary.

Posner announces retirement, ending 36-year prolific, influential tenure on Seventh Circuit

By Jonathan Bilyk | Sep 5, 2017

After more than three-and-a-half decades on the bench at Chicago’s Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, Judge Richard Posner has announced his retirement.

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