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COVID-19 Update
  • By: Craig Donnelly, Esq.
  • Published: March 19, 2020

Dear Friends And Clients, The world health crisis brought about by the coronavirus (Covid-19) is of great concern to us all. First and foremost, we hope this message finds you and your family and loved ones well. We thank you for the continued trust you have placed in us as your legal counsel. We wanted to inform you of developments in the legal community and how we, as a firm, are addressing them. The Federal Court, the Circuit Court of Cook County and the surrounding counties have been ordered to substantially shut down for the coming 30 days. In accordance with the CDC guidelines and our good judgment, our firm has shifted to substantially remote work as of today, March 19, 2020. We will be back in our offices as full operational capacity as soon as possible. In the meantime, will be utilizing all technology at our disposal…Read More

Specific Performance
  • By: Craig Donnelly, Esq.
  • Published: September 19, 2017

Have you ever been a party to a signed contract and then had the other party bail? This happens surprisingly often, especially in the real estate context. Imagine a buyer and a seller that have signed a real estate contract to transfer ownership of a home. The parties go through an inspection and other negotiation and then, suddenly, the seller decides that he/she can’t go through with it. What can you do? One option is to force the seller to complete the transaction by filing a lawsuit for breach of contract. That lawsuit can seek “specific performance” as the remedy. If the judge grants specific performance, you can acquire the property under the terms of your contract. Specific performance can only be granted where there is a valid and enforceable contract – in writing. The contract terms must be clear and unambiguous. In the real estate contract, unambiguous…Read More

Can I Recover Damages On An Oral Agreement
  • By: Craig Donnelly, Esq.
  • Published: March 28, 2017

A client recently asked me: “can I recover damages on an oral agreement?” My answer: “That depends.” It is always preferable from a legal perspective to reduce to writing any agreement with another person. It simply makes things easier and more straight forward. Sometimes, for one reason or another, that just is not done. But, not all is lost. Many oral contracts are enforceable – some are not. Illinois’ Statute of Frauds law makes clear that oral agreements are generally NOT enforceable when: (1) It is an agreement for the sale of land (2) It is an agreement for a term of longer than one year (3) It is an agreement where one person assumes another’s debt (4) It is an agreement for the sale of goods worth more than $500 (5) It is a promise made by executors and administrators of an estate. Generally, if the agreement…Read More

Piercing The Corporate Veil Revisited
  • By: Craig Donnelly, Esq.
  • Published: December 15, 2016

The Illinois Appellate Court has recently broadened the potential individual liability for a corporation’s debts, even in cases where the individual is not an officer, director, employee, or shareholder of the corporation. Corporations and LLCs are generally separate and distinct from their employees, officers, directors, and shareholders. Their purpose has been to insulate individuals from personal liability for the corporation’s debts and other liabilities. Historically, Illinois courts have been reluctant to “pierce the corporate veil” and hold individuals liable for corporate debts and other liabilities. However, that may be changing. Illinois courts may pierce the veil where: (i) there is such a unity of interest and ownership that separate personalities of the corporation and the parties who compose it no longer exist, and (ii) circumstances such that the fiction of a separate corporation would promote injustice or inequitable circumstances. Traditionally, courts would consider piercing the corporate veil only…Read More

So, There Is A Judgment Entered …. Now What
  • By: Craig Donnelly, Esq.
  • Published: September 29, 2016

Whether we are representing a plaintiff (seeking a judgment) or a defendant (defending against a judgment), an early conversation with the client almost always includes the reminder that getting the judgment is the easy part. Collection, regardless of which side you are on, is the hard part. We have represented multiple clients who have a judgment against them personally. The creditor will almost certainly seek to discover personal assets such as bank accounts, vehicles, and other property held in the debtor’s name. In many cases, clients previously took steps to protect their various personal assets, such as with a comprehensive estate plan. Clients frequently become concerned about how the judgment will affect their business interests. That answer depends in large part on how the business interests are structured. For example, an interest in an LLC has some advantage to individual members faced with a judgment against them personally…Read More

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