Miller Shakman Obtains Critical Stay of Multimillion-dollar Malpractice Action
On September 21, 2021, a team of Miller Shakman attorneys obtained an appellate victory in New Jersey staying a $170 million legal malpractice action brought against their client, a large international law firm. After briefing and argument, the Appellate Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey reversed a trial court ruling denying the stay. The Appellate Division agreed with Miller Shakman’s argument that the malpractice action should be stayed pending the outcome of related federal tax litigation, which could reduce or fully eliminate all pending claims against the client. The appeal was briefed by Edward Feldman, Dan Feeney, Kay Dawson, and Rachel Ellen Simon, along with local counsel at Lowenstein Sandler LLP, and argued by Dan Feeney.
Firm Secures Fiduciary Breach Judgment at Trial and Appeal
Following a seven-day trial, MSLF won a judgment exceeding $7.7 million, including punitive damages, for an investor against his former business partner. The trial court found that the partner had breached his fiduciary duties by, among other things, diverting funds and mismanaging the real estate investments the parties jointly owned. MSLF also won an additional $476,000 against another defendant. Both defendants were expelled or had their interests foreclosed in the projects. The Illinois Appellate Court upheld the decision on March 31, 2021:
Cahnman v. Timber Court LLC, 2021 IL App (1st) 200338
Further details about the case were reported in the Chicago Sun-Times.
MSLF attorneys Karen Levine, Edward Feldman, Alexandra Block and Mary Eileen Wells tried the case and defended the judgment on appeal.
Alexandra Block and Dan Feeney Win Appellate Victory for Large Media Client in Precedent-setting Freedom of Information Act Case
On May 9, 2017, Alexandra Block and Dan Feeney won an appellate victory for The Chicago Tribune in a precedent-setting Freedom of Information Act case, in which the Illinois Appellate Court, Second District, held that the College of DuPage Foundation and College of DuPage must disclose a subpoena under Illinois’ open records law. This was the first Illinois case to determine whether a non-profit dedicated solely to supporting a public college must comply with FOIA. Following the appeal, Ms. Block and Mr. Feeney also secured a full recovery of The Chicago Tribune’s attorneys’ fees in the Circuit Court of DuPage County.
Chicago Tribune v. College of Du Page, 2017 IL App (2d) 160274
Edward Feldman Wins Trebled Damages in License and Trademark Case for Large Media Client
On June 23, 2017, Edward Feldman won a treble damages award and attorneys’ fees in a license and trademark case tried to a jury in October 2016. The jury had rejected our client’s opponents’ claim for nearly $30 million in damages from an alleged breach of contract and tortious interference, and awarded our client $5 million in trademark damages and $1.6 million in contract damages. On June 23, the trial court trebled the trademark award to $15 million and awarded attorneys’ fees and costs of over $2.2 million, bringing the total judgment to nearly $19 million. Mr. Feldman tried the case with Pete Ross, an attorney at Browne George Ross in Los Angeles.
Firm Wins Affirmance of Dismissal on Appeal of a $600 Million RICO Action Against Large Law Firm Client
On February 23, 2017, the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a judgment dismissing a $600 million RICO claim brought against a large law firm represented by Marc Beem, Edward Feldman, Tom Staunton and Kay Dawson. The Court agreed with our firm’s showing that the lengthy complaint in the case failed to allege that our client had entered into any agreement with other defendants to violate RICO.
Edward Feldman Wins $7 Million Verdict for Large Media Client
Following a three-week jury trial, on October 21, 2016, Edward Feldman won a $7 million verdict for, as well as a defense verdict on claims against, a large media client. The case involved license and trademark issues. Our client’s opponents sought nearly $30 million in damages from an alleged breach of contract and tortious interference, but the jury found that it was they who had breached the contract and had infringed our client’s trademark rights. Mr. Feldman tried the case with Pete Ross, an attorney at Browne George Ross in Los Angeles.
Karen Levine Named Among Top Ten Leading Women Civil Appellate Lawyers In Illinois
Karen Levine was named among the “Top 10 Leading Women Civil Appellate Lawyers in Illinois” in Leading Lawyer’s Magazine – Women’s Edition for 2015. Leading Lawyer’s based its list on a survey of practitioners and review by a panel of attorneys they selected. The magazine also included Ms. Levine in its lists of the Top 100 women business lawyers and Top 100 women consumer lawyers in Illinois.
Leading Lawyers Network Magazine – Women’s Edition 2015: “Top 10 Women Civil Appellate”
Shakman Successfully Challenges Political Hiring at IDOT
On October the federal court overseeing the Shakman Decree regulating government hiring granted a motion filed by Michael Shakman seeking the appointment of a special master to investigate and remedy illegal employment practices at the Illinois Department of Transportation.
Chicago Sun-Times, October 22, 2014: “Federal monitor to be appointed to oversee hiring at IDOT”
Weisman Interviewed by Carol Marin on Burge Case
Miller Shakman attorney and former Assistant U.S. Attorney David Weisman was interviewed by NBC 5’s Carol Marin in connection with the release from prison of former Chicago Police Commander Jon Burge. While at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Weisman was the lead prosecutor in the Burge perjury case.
Miller Shakman Attorney Appointed to U.S. Marshal Committee by Durbin and Kirk
United States Senators Richard Durbin and Mark Kirk have appointed David Weisman to a five-member bipartisan committee to help select the next U.S. Marshal for the Northern District of Illinois. Weisman, who is the only practicing attorney on the committee, joins two former federal judges and two law enforcement officials.
ABC7 Eyewitness News, Chicago, September 23, 2014: “Next U.S. Marshal in Chicago Search Begins”
Miller Shakman Challenges Chicago’s Unequal Regulation of Ride Sharing Services
Mike Shakman and Edward Feldman filed a lawsuit on behalf of the taxi industry against the City of Chicago for its failure to regulate ride-sharing services such as Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar. The suit is the first in the nation challenging a municipality for its unequal regulation of taxis and ride-sharing services.
Washington Post, June 20, 2014: “Taxi medallions have been the best investment in America for years. Now Uber may be changing that.”
The End of the Shakman Decrees for Chicago
On June 16, 2014 federal Magistrate Judge Sidney I. Schenkier granted Michael Shakman’s motion to lift the federal oversight of Chicago’s hiring practices. The motion states that the City was in “substantial compliance” and outside supervision was no longer needed, thus ending the long-standing Shakman Decrees as to the city of Chicago, but continuing the decrees with respect to other governmental bodies that had not reached substantial compliance.
New York Times, June 16, 2014: “Chicago Is Freed From Oversight On Graft”
ACLU and Miller Shakman Attorneys Sue Peoria for Arresting Author of Parody Twitter Account
Attorneys from the ACLU and Miller Shakman have filed suit against the City of Peoria, its Mayor, and other city officials on behalf of Jon Daniel, the author of a parody Twitter account that poked fun at the Mayor. in response to that account, Peoria officials raided Mr. Daniel’s home, seized his computer and other property, and arrested him.
ACLU, June 12, 2014: “Man Sues City After Being Arrested for Twitter Account Parodying Mayor”
Miller Shakman Convinces Illinois Supreme Court to Strike Down Eavesdropping Statute
Dan Feeney, Gabe Plotkin and Alexandra Block represented Annabel Melong in a landmark case before the Illinois Supreme Court, People v. Melongo, in which the Court held that the Illinois Eavesdropping Statute is unconstitutional.
Press Release, March 20, 2014: “Illinois Supreme Court Strikes Down as Unconstitutional the Illinois Eavesdropping Statute”
89 WLS, March 21, 2014: John Kass and Lauren Cohn interview of Gabe Plotkin
Karen L. Levine Featured in Leading Lawyers Magazine
Miller Shakman attorney Karen Levine was the subject of a feature article in the annual Women’s Edition of Leading Lawyer’s Magazine. The article highlights Karen’s success in the area of high net worth divorce matters, building on her years of experience as a commercial litigator.
Leading Lawyers Network Magazine – Women’s Edition 2012: “Karen Levine, Finding Common Ground in High Net Worth Divorces”