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Which State Has Jurisdiction in a Product Liability Lawsuit?If you decide to file a personal injury lawsuit, you would obviously prefer for the case to be heard in a court that is local to you. This should not be a concern if the defendant resides or does business in your home state. However, there may be a question of jurisdiction if you are dealing with a defendant who resides in a different state. State jurisdiction over product liability cases has become contentious because of a 2017 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that set stricter requirements for proving that a state has the authority to hear a case involving a non-resident defendant. The ruling has made it easier for corporate defendants to request a case dismissal due to lack of jurisdiction.

Personal Jurisdiction

Part of deciding whether a state has jurisdiction over a case is determining whether the state has authority over the defendant, known as personal jurisdiction. Many defendants in product liability cases are businesses that have headquarters in a different state from where the case is being heard. However, there are many ways to establish personal jurisdiction over a non-resident defendant. First of all, your jurisdiction claim is its strongest if you purchased the product and were injured in the same state where you are filing. You may also need to prove that the defendant had minimum contact with you in your state, such as:

  • Operating a branch office or warehouse in your state that is related to the product that caused your injury
  • Soliciting you to purchase the product by catalog, phone call, or other means of product marketing

Lack of Minimum Contact

The Supreme Court ruling emphasized that a state cannot claim personal jurisdiction over a defendant without minimum contact that is relevant to the case. For instance, a defendant may own property in your state where it conducts business or manufactures products that are unrelated to your case. Courts in many states had allowed jurisdiction over personal injury lawsuits based on this evidence, but some courts are now citing the Supreme Court ruling and saying that this evidence is not enough to prove minimum contact.

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What Illinois Businesses Should Know

A.  Introduction

The cornerstone of federal legislation for small business relief is the CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”). 

The CARES Act set aside $349 billion for government-guaranteed loans for small businesses, to cover eight weeks of payroll and other expenses.

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Why a Driver’s License Revocation Is More Severe Than a SuspensionLosing your driving privileges is a cumbersome penalty that you can face for various infractions in Illinois. People often refer to a driver’s license suspension and a driver’s license revocation as if they are the same thing. Both have the same result of making it illegal for you to drive unless you receive a Restricted Driving Permit. However, a driver’s license revocation is more severe and will make it more difficult for you to regain your driving privileges. You will need the help of an experienced license reinstatement lawyer in order to get your license back.

What Is the Difference Between Suspension and Revocation?

When your driver’s license is suspended, you still possess it but it is temporarily inactive. You could have a definite suspension, in which your license is suspended for a set amount of time, or an indefinite suspension, in which reinstatement of your license is dependent upon meeting conditions such as paying fines. Once the conditions for ending the suspension have been met, you will automatically be eligible for reinstatement of your license.

When your driver’s license is revoked, it has been terminated so that it no longer exists. To regain your driving privileges, you will need to apply for a new driver’s license after a set waiting period. The Illinois Secretary of State’s office must grant permission for you to reinstate your license, which it will determine at a hearing. In order to receive permission, you may need to show that you will not be a danger to yourself or others if you are allowed to drive.

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What Happens If Your Loved One Dies Without a Will or Trust?When a person dies, distributing assets from their estate is one of the many issues that the survivors must sort out. In Illinois, probate is required for dividing an estate if the deceased person solely owned properties that have a total value of more than $100,000. The probate process should go smoothly if the person left a detailed last will and testament or put their assets in a trust. However, the person may have died without an estate plan or had a plan that was out-of-date or vague in its instructions. When an estate plan leaves unanswered questions, the beneficiaries must use probate to fairly divide properties or attempt to determine what the deceased person intended.

Problems with an Estate Plan

Amid the grief of losing a loved one, it can be stressful to learn that there are flaws with the estate plan that make it difficult to determine how to divide their assets. The person reviewing the estate plan may discover that it:

  • Leaves properties to someone who is deceased
  • Had not been updated since the deceased person divorced or remarried
  • Does not include significant assets that need to be distributed
  • Is invalid for reasons such as lacking a witness

You can work through some problems in an estate plan while still salvaging the rest of the plan. For instance, a property that was instructed to go to a deceased spouse may be divided among their children instead.

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What Employees Should Know

A.  Introduction

On March 27, 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”), was passed by Congress and signed into law. 

The CARES Act is the largest economic bill in U.S. History, calling for nearly $2 trillion in spending, in part as an economic stimulus package to benefit small businesses and individuals.

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