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The Illinois Supreme Court handed down four opinions on Thursday, March 19. In People v. McLaurin, the court reinstated a man’s conviction of being an armed habitual criminal. In People v. Hill, the court declined to overrule its prior decision in People v. Stout, which holds that the odor of burnt cannabis, alone, is enough to provide probable cause to search a vehicle. In People v. Jackson, the court upheld a murder conviction despite the defendant’s claims of error. In Whitaker v. Wedbush Securities, Inc., the court construed article 4A of the Illinois Uniform Commercial Code to determine whether the…
ISBA members: The health and safety of our members and staff is of the utmost importance to the ISBA. While developments related to COVID-19 continue to unfold, the ISBA is closely monitoring a variety of public health sources. In light of Friday’s Executive Order, the ISBA’s offices will be closed through April 7, but staff will continue to telecommute and member services will remain uninterrupted. We will not be having any in-person events, in-person CLE, or in-person business meetings through April 30. During this time, the ISBA will be providing information and practice resources to assist our members as…
Effective for anything filed on March 16 through March 31, 2020, the Illinois Supreme Court has approved relaxing the requirement in Paragraph 8a of the Supreme Court’s Electronic Filing Procedures and User Manual to give parties 14 days instead of the usual five days to provide the Court the 13 copies of certain e-filing documents. Here is current language in the manual which specifies the types of documents: “8a. Upon acceptance of the following document types: briefs, petitions for rehearing, petitions for leave to appeal and any answers to a petition for leave to appeal or petition for rehearing, the…
The Illinois Supreme Court handed down one opinion on Wednesday, February 26. In Burns v. Municipal Officers Electoral Board, the court upheld the constitutionality of a provision of the Illinois Municipal Code restricting the power of home rule municipalities to impose term limits. Burns v. The Municipal Officers Electoral Board of Elk Grove Village By Karen Kies DeGrand, Donohue Brown Mathewson & Smyth LLC In an expedited appeal affecting the upcoming primary election, the Illinois Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of a provision of the Illinois Municipal Code restricting the power of home rule municipalities to impose term limits. The…
The Illinois Supreme Court handed down two opinions on Friday, February 21. In People v. Gayden, the court considered whether to provide a means for a defendant to challenge his trial attorney’s failure to file a motion to suppress where the record on direct appeal was found to be insufficient to evaluate that claim. In Joiner v. SVM Management, LLC, the court reaffirmed its prior holdings that a class action lawsuit is mooted when the named plaintiff rejects tender of full relief before a class certification motion is filed. People v. Gayden By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State…
The Illinois Supreme Court today announced a pilot program utilizing volunteer pro bono attorneys to reduce the backlog of criminal appeals that are currently pending with the Office of the State Appellate Defender (OSAD) across the state. In this six-month pilot program, pro bono attorneys will help reduce the backlog by substituting for OSAD in certain criminal appeals. The pilot program will launch in the First and Second Districts of the Appellate Court with managerial assistance from the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts. Upon favorable assessment of the pilot program, it would be expanded to include the Third, Fourth…
The Illinois Supreme Court has amended several Rules pertaining to bail and bond, effective March 1. The Supreme Court on Feb. 6 announced that it has amended Rules 501, 526, and 528. Changes to Rule 528, which pertains to bail schedule-ordinance offenses, petty offenses, business offenses, and misdemeanors, cap bail fees at $100. The amended Rules can be viewed online.…
The Illinois Attorney Registration and Disciplinary Commission (ARDC) is accepting comments for its “Intermediary Connecting Services Proposal,” which it has submitted to the Illinois Supreme Court. The proposed Rules are available online. Comments may be emailed to information@iardc.org. The proposed regulations would address for-profit matching services, market inefficiencies, and the uncertainty in the Rules of Professional Conduct that may discourage lawyers from expanding their advertising capabilities. “The ARDC’s proposal seeks to: Amend Rule of Professional Conduct 7.2. Proposed amendments to Rule 7.2 would guide Illinois lawyers in their participation and payments to intermediary connecting services. Lawyers would be…
The Illinois Supreme Court handed down eight opinions on Friday, January 24. Full summaries of the opinions are available below. People v. Ashley By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State Appellate Defender Marshall Ashley was convicted of stalking under 720 ILCS 5/12-7.3(a)(2), (c)(1), based on allegations that he knowingly engaged in a course of conduct directed at Keshia Tinch, which he knew or should have known would cause her to suffer emotional distress. Evidence at trial was that defendant called Tinch, argued with her, and threatened to come over and kill her, causing Tinch and her mother to leave…
Being an attorney is more difficult than ever. Clients are more demanding. Advancements in technology require your immediate attention and feedback. It may be difficult to effectively manage your workday without something slipping through the cracks, making practice management software an essential component of an effective law firm. The ISBA’s whitepaper on practice management software provides practical guidance for attorneys about how practice management programs can help handle your calendar, contacts, files, tasks, time entries, and communication. The whitepaper is one of many member resources available on Practice HQ, the ISBA’s one-stop microsite for practice management and technology information.…
The Illinois Supreme Court handed down five opinions on Thursday, December 19. The ISBA’s panel of leading civil attorneys reviewed the opinions and provided summaries. In Ammons v. Canadian National Railway Co., the court interpreted the meaning of sections 55 and 60 of the Federal Employers’ Liability Act. In Iwan Ries & Co. v. the City of Chicago, the court addressed the city of Chicago’s power to tax tobacco products other than cigarettes. In Jones v. Pneumo Abex, LLC, an asbestos-related case involving claims of civil conspiracy, the Supreme Court remanded to the appellate court for reconsideration of a summary…
The Illinois Supreme Court today announced the approval of a new Remote Access Policy (RAP) to take effect on January 1, 2020. The RAP, which includes an implementation plan for expanding remote access to court information and documents, will initially be released to a subset of Illinois licensed attorneys selected by the Illinois State Bar Association Standing Committee on Legal Technology for a trial period using the statewide re:SearchIL portal for court records. The RAP, which was developed by the e-Business Policy Advisory Board in conjunction with the Administrative Office of the Illinois Courts, supersedes the previous Electronic Access Policy…
The Illinois Supreme Court handed down one opinion on Thursday, December 5. In People v. Eubanks, the court held 625 ILCS 5/11-501.2(c)(2) unconstitutional as applied to the defendant. Section 501.2(c)(2) permits the warrantless collection and testing of an individual’s blood, breath, or urine for alcohol or drugs if the police have probable cause to believe that the individual was driving under the influence and was involved in a motor vehicle accident causing death or personal injury to another. People v. Eubanks By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State Appellate Defender In a decision which included both a special concurrence,…
The Illinois Supreme Court handed down nine opinions on Thursday, November 21. Full summaries of the opinions are available below. People v. Abdullah By Kerry J. Bryson, Office of the State Appellate Defender Illinois Supreme Court Rule 606(b) provides that where a timely post-trial or post-sentencing motion is filed “by counsel or by defendant, if not represented by counsel,” any notice of appeal—whether filed before or after the timely motion—should be stricken by the trial court so that the timely motion can be ruled upon. A defendant must then file a new notice of appeal within 30 days of the…
Many attorneys are not familiar with document automation and may use inefficient approaches to drafting documents. The ISBA’s “Document Assembly Checklist” helps attorneys efficiently draft documents by educating them on using “gold-standard templates,” which are single, word processor documents containing all of the provisions, required and optional, that should be included for a given document. The checklist is one of many member resources available at Practice HQ, the ISBA’s one-stop microsite for practice management and technology information. Organized by the life cycle of a law practice, Practice HQ can help you start a firm, build, manage, protect,…
The Illinois Supreme Court handed down one opinion on Thursday, October 24. In Yakich v. Aulds, the court vacated a circuit court judgment, which declared unconstitutional section 513 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act. Yakich v. Aulds By Karen Kies DeGrand, Donohue Brown Mathewson & Smyth LLC Making clear that the Illinois Supreme Court, and only that court, may overrule and modify its opinions, the court vacated a circuit court judgment declaring unconstitutional section 513 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act, 750 ILCS 5/513(a) (West 2018). The vitality of section 513(a) arose in the…