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Illinois Lawyer Now, the ISBA’s recently launched blog aggregation site, now features nearly 70 contributors throughout the state. The site hosts content from members’ legal blogs, as well as original ISBA substantive legal news. ISBA member bloggers or firms with at least one ISBA member are encouraged to submit their blogs for inclusion by filling out a short online form. Illinois Lawyer Now is a complimentary member benefit that was created to highlight the excellent writing of ISBA members. While the average firm’s legal blog is seen by only those who visit its website, inclusion on Illinois Lawyer Now…
The Illinois Supreme Court handed down one opinion on Thursday, June 6. In People v. Clark, the court affirmed that a defendant’s bail bond violation constituted escape. People v. Clark By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State Appellate Defender Elizabeth Clark had a history of substance abuse. In October 2012, Clark pled guilty to burglary and unlawful use of a credit card and, pending sentencing, she was released for treatment. Ultimately, Clark was sentenced to 90 days in jail and 30 months of probation. Clark subsequently violated that probation twice. She was taken into custody and then released on…
The Illinois Supreme Court today amended Rule 295, which pertains to matters assignable to associate judges. The amended Rule, which goes into effect July 1, provides: “The chief judge of each circuit or any circuit judge designated by him or her may assign an associate judge to hear and determine any matters deemed suitable by the chief judge or designated circuit judge, including the trial of criminal cases in which the defendant is charged with an offense punishable by imprisonment for more than one year.” The Rule previously read as follows: “The chief judge of each circuit or any circuit…
Marcia M. Meis, director of the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, announced today that 386 out of 391 Illinois associate judges who filed requests for reappointment to their office for a new four-year term have been retained. Having certified the results of more than 480 total ballots cast in Illinois’ 24 circuit courts, Meis informed that each successful candidate received votes that tallied three-fifths or greater in favor of their reappointment. Five associate judges did not receive the requisite number of votes for reappointment. The new term of office for each reappointed associate judge will begin on July 1,…
Illinois Supreme Court Chief Justice Lloyd A. Karmeier issued the following statement today on the increased funding for the judicial branch following the signing of the Fiscal Year 2020 budget by Governor J.B. Pritzker. “On behalf of the entire court, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the General Assembly and the Governor for their willingness to confront the growing financial problems faced by the Judicial Branch and to do so in a concrete and constructive way. After five years of flat appropriations and rising expenses, most of which were mandated by law and beyond our control, the…
The age-old idiom “hope for the best and prepare for the worst” can be applied to assessing risks to a law firm. To plan for recovery, attorneys should understand what risks threaten their practice, and how to determine their potential impact in order to mitigate risks. The ISBA’s Risk Assessment Form provides a checklist that identifies and rates potential risks to a law firm. Attorneys can then focus mitigation efforts on risks with higher importance, which is calculated by multiplying probability and impact. The form is one of many member resources available at Practice HQ, the ISBA’s one-stop microsite…
The Illinois Supreme Court issued three opinions on Thursday, May 23. The ISBA’s panel of leading civil attorneys reviewed the opinions and provided summaries. In LMP Services, Inc. v. City of Chicago, the court ruled that Chicago’s food truck regulations are constitutional. In Roberts v. Board of Trustees of Community College District No. 508, the court dismissed retaliatory discharge and whistleblower claims brought by a former Malcolm X College employee against City Colleges of Chicago. In Doe v. Coe, the court weighed in on the elements of torts of negligent and willful and wanton hiring, retention, and supervision. LMP Services,
The Illinois Supreme Court on May 23 announced amendments to Rules 767 and 773, which are effective July 1. Amendments to both rules pertain to costs associated with attorney reinstatement following disbarment or suspension. Amended Rule 767 now requires a petition of reinstatement to be accompanied by a $1,500 deposit to be applied against costs. Amended Rule 773 in part raises the maximum amount of costs the court may order an attorney to pay for disciplinary matters and proceedings.…
The Illinois Supreme Court Rules Committee will hear comments June 19 at a public hearing in Chicago on six proposals, including a proposal to establish a protective order for the release of medical information and a proposal involving the use of deposition testimony by a party. The committee will also consider proposed changes to Supreme Court rules involving petitions for leave to appeal, amicus curiae briefs, and an appendix to briefs filed by appellants. All the proposals, which must be approved by the Illinois Supreme Court before they could take effect, will be aired at a hearing before the Rules…
The Illinois Supreme Court on May 17 announced amendments to Rules 68, 472, and 558. The changes are effective immediately. Supreme Court Rule 68 requires judges to file a written statement of economic interests and relationships of the judge and members of the judge’s immediate family with the Supreme Court’s clerk. The amendment requires the clerk to redact the judge’s email address contained in any statement filed pursuant to the Rule. Rules 472 and 558 pertain to corrections of sentencing errors in criminal cases and traffic, conservation and ordinance violation cases, respectively. In both Rules, the amendment requires that in…
The Secretary of State’s office receives many types of civil documents/orders from courts and attorneys regarding judgments arising from uninsured motor vehicle crashes. These documents need to be read, interpreted, and processed by employees of the Secretary of State (SOS) to determine what, if any, action should be taken against a person’s driver’s license. Because the SOS employees processing these documents are not attorneys and because these documents vary by county and by attorney, reading and understanding the content of the submitted documentation can be difficult. Understanding the documents is of utmost importance since action taken based on those documents…
Revamped “Illinois Lawyer Now” to highlight member blogs, ISBA content The ISBA is excited to announce the launch of a new blog aggregation site, the newly minted Illinois Lawyer Now. Powered by LexBlog, the site hosts original ISBA substantive legal news, as well as content from members’ legal blogs. By aggregating ISBA and members’ legal blogs, Illinois Lawyer Now will be the preeminent site for up-to-date, Illinois-specific legal content. Do you have a legal blog? Legal blogs are eligible for inclusion if the author of the blog is an ISBA member or the blog is associated with a firm…
The Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission (ARDC), the administrative agency that regulates licensed Illinois lawyers, has filed its year 2018 Annual Report with the Supreme Court of Illinois. The report was released to the public this morning when a copy was posted on the ARDC website. A summary of the annual report is available at Highlights of the 2018 Annual Report.   The ARDC annually evaluates the effectiveness of the disciplinary system.  Complete and comprehensive statistics concerning the disciplinary caseload are submitted to the Illinois Supreme Court and are published in the Annual Report. Few professions account for their…
For many law firms, referrals are an integral part of obtaining new clients. But it takes time to build a referral base, which must be cultivated through meaningful relationships with reliable sources. The ISBA’s whitepaper on increasing a firm’s referrals provides five fundamental keys to accomplishing that goal. They include tips such as not trying to be a generalist, actively building relationships with five to 10 new referral sources each year, keeping in touch on a regular basis, rewarding people for referring clients, and not relying on just other attorneys for referrals. The whitepaper is one of many member resources…
Closing a law firm can be a daunting task. There are many considerations attorneys must take into account, and the process itself takes time due to obligations to protect client information as well as the interest of the clients. The ISBA’s Closing a Law Firm Consideration Checklist provides a breakdown of the basic framework and issues to consider when closing a firm, including the following: Client lists Firm’s files and records retention information Insurance policies Designating another attorney to close the practice in the event of death or incapacitation. The checklist is one of many member resources available at Practice
The Illinois Supreme Court issued three opinions on Thursday, April 18. The ISBA’s panel of leading appellate and civil attorneys reviewed the opinions and provided summaries. In People v. Buffer, the court upheld an appellate court’s decision to vacate a defendant’s 50-year prison sentence imposed for a crime he committed when he was 16 years old and remanded the case for resentencing. In People v. Kimble, the court denied a man’s motion to bar his reprosecution on double jeopardy grounds where the trial judge declared a mistrial after the jury was deadlocked. Fillmore v. Taylor addresses whether an inmate can…