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The GST Trust Tax Trap

The issues faced by trust and estate lawyers sometimes include complex tax analysis. One of those issues arises when an irrevocable trust skips a generation with trust assets going directly to grandchildren. That event may trigger a tax that is known as the federal generation-skipping transfer (GST) tax. The GST tax can be partially avoided   Continue Reading »

Ruling Raises Questions About OSHA Worksite "Controlling Employer" Policy

An interesting legal development in Texas might prove significant for construction companies and other employers within the jurisdiction of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit – and any other jurisdiction that follows its view. The ruling should also encourage employers in other jurisdictions to challenge their circuit court’s rulings on “multiemployer/controlling employer”   Continue Reading »

7th Circuit Reaffirms Distinction Between Supervisor and Co-Employee Harassment Under Title VII

In Gates v. Board of Education of the City of Chicago, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the grant of summary judgment in the defendant’s favor in this Title VII racially hostile work environment case.  The District Court had found that a supervisor’s use of the “N” word on 2 occasions and stating that   Continue Reading »

Internal Quality Control Documents Granted Privilege in Med Mal Dispute

Hospitals face this issue on a regular basis: whether documents used for internal quality control review sessions are privileged.  In this particular medical malpractice lawsuit alleging wrongful death, the hospital asserted privilege, under the Medical Studies Act, to certain internal quality control documents requested in discovery. Overview: The decedent, while under general anesthesia, allegedly suffered   Continue Reading »

Illinois Spoliation of Evidence Law -- A Comprehensive Explanation

I.  Elements/definition of spoliation of evidence: Is it an “intentional or fraudulent” threshold or can it be negligent destruction of evidence. Illinois law does not recognize a separate and independent tort for spoliation of evidence. Dardeen v. Kuehling, 213 Ill. 2d 329, 821 N.E.2d 227 (2004); Boyd v. Travelers Ins. Co., 166 Ill. 2d 188,   Continue Reading »

New Developments In Insurer Liability For Excess Judgments In Illinois

On March 15, 2018, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit issued its opinion in Hyland v. Liberty Mutual Fire Insurance Company, Case No. 17-2712. In Hyland, the dispute involved the amount an insurance carrier was responsible to pay where the insurer denied coverage without seeking a declaratory judgment action with respect   Continue Reading »

A Municipality “Moment:” FOIA Request for Police Department Videotapes Denied by Trial Court and Affirmed on Appeal

Overview: In 2016, the plaintiff, who worked as a reporter, submitted four Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to obtain videotapes from 2013 of police interviews of several individuals accused of murder. The defendant (a municipality) denied those requests claiming unwarranted invasion of personal privacy, interference with actual or pending law enforcement proceedings, and disclosure   Continue Reading »

Has McKinney Changed the Face of Proof of Proximate Causation in Asbestos Litigation in Illinois?

The case of McKinney v. Hobart, 2018 IL App (4th) 170333, may be again changing the landscape of proximate causation proof in asbestos exposure disputes in Illinois. Recent Key Rulings In Thacker v. UNR Industries, the Supreme Court of Illinois established, “[t]o show causation in an asbestos case, a plaintiff must produce evidence of exposure   Continue Reading »

Johnson and Bell

Johnson and Bell