Professional Liability | Representative Matters
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Professional Liability

  • Plaintiff v. Defendant Attorney

    Lipe Lyons obtained dismissal with prejudice of a legal malpractice claim against a family law attorney and his law firm. The plaintiff, a former client, alleged that her attorneys failed to secure a sufficient amount of maintenance payments and properly categorize marital and non-marital assets, forcing her to settle for less than she was entitled to. The trial court first found that her claims for maintenance payments were barred by the statute of limitations, and gave the plaintiff leave to amend her complaint. After the amendment, the trial court dismissed the claims arising out of the categorization of marital property with prejudice because the plaintiff agreed in the settlement documents that the amount of the settlement was fair and reasonable, and it was speculative to assume she could have settled for more if the defendants had categorized her non-marital property differently.

  • Schmid v. Krupp et al.

    Lipe Lyons obtained summary judgment, and the Illinois Appellate Court affirmed, for a law firm and its attorney in a legal malpractice claim involving numerous liaiblity and damages issues. The plaintiff filed suit against his former attorneys alleging they failed to exercise reasonable care in relation to a divorce trial. The plaintiff claimed the defendants were negligent in not offering medical testimony regarding the former spouse’s medical condition that prevented her from working, and economic testimony regarding the coal industry and the plaintiff's alleged inability to secure employment as an engineer who specialized in the construction of coal-fired powerplants. The plaintiff also made several complicated arguments regarding his damages and the way that defendants' alleged negligence impacted how much he had to pay his former spouse. After three years of discovery, the Illinois Appellate Court agreed with the trial court that there was no question of fact that the plaintiff could not meet his burden of proof on any of his claims.

  • Paul et al. v. Aviva Life and Annuity Company

    Prosecuted a RICO class action against an insurance broker and its agent on behalf of individuals and corporations who purchased life insurance policies and were led to believe that they could deduct the premium payments and make tax free withdrawals. The Internal Revenue Service determined that the life insurance policies were tax shelters, disallowed the deductions, and assessed penalties and interest against the purchasers.

  • The Russian Orthodox v. Economou Partners Architects, Inc. et al.

    Defended a masonry subcontractor against a breach of contract and breach of implied warranty lawsuit that arose out of allegedly defective structural masonry that caused the roof of a church to cave in and damage rare manuscripts.

  • Sabo v. Keshet

    Defended a not-for-profit daycare against lawsuit filed by the parents of a teenage girl with mental and physical disabilities and a history of seizures and strokes who fell from a chair and struck a portion of her head without a skull on the ground, which allegedly resulted in her death six years later after her awareness and responsiveness slowly declined to a vegetative state.

  • Estate of Miller v. Harbaugh, 698 F.3d 956 (7th Cir. 2012)

    The Seventh Circuit affirmed the trial court’s order granting a psychologist summary judgment on the plaintiff’s Eighth Amendment deliberate indifference claim. The plaintiff was the estate of an underage prisoner with a history of mental illness and suicide attempts who committed suicide in a juvenile detention facility. The Seventh Circuit and trial court found no question of fact that the psychologist was not deliberately indifferent to the decedent’s medical needs.

  • Doherty v. AMEC et al.

    Plaintiff, a carpenter, was setting 4,800 pound concrete retention walls when one of the walls collapsed onto him, crushing his cervical and lumbar spine, both hips, a rib, a lung, and causing other injuries. Jeff Lipe and Jordan Tank represented RM Chin, a construction management firm that provided resident engineers to observe the work of Doherty’s employer and make sure the work complied with the plans and specifications. During discovery Lipe Lyons attorneys took the lead on depositions to show that the employer was solely responsible for Doherty’s safety. Even though Plaintiffs’ attorneys targeted RM Chin with their own questions, when fact discovery was over Plaintiffs settled directly with Doherty’s employer and voluntarily dismissed their claims against RM Chin.

  • Chaney v. Quest Laboratories

    U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri. Represented Quest, a diagnostic testing laboratory, in a wrongful death case arising out of an alleged misreading of pathology slides. Case was resolved on a favorable basis.

  • Dowler v. Galvez

    Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. Plaintiff alleged that during a bilateral salpingo oophorectomy, Dr. Galvez negligently placed a clamp posterior to the vagina, thereby causing a colovaginal fistula. The case was tried from December 11, 1995 through December 18, 1995. On December 18, 1995, the jury returned a general verdict in favor of the plaintiff and against the defendant in the amount of $125,000. That same jury responded in the negative to a Special Interrogatory that asked the jury if the defendant was negligent in the use of surgical instruments during the operation on the plaintiff. The plaintiff's entire case rested on the proposition that the defendant was negligent in her use of surgical instruments and somehow made or cut a hole in the tissue that separates the vagina from the colon. The case settled for $75,000 while post-trial motions were pending.

  • DuPage Biofunds, Inc. v. Randazzo

    Circuit Court of Cook County, IL. Represented an insurance broker in a suit alleging malpractice in failure to procure a key man insurance policy on the life of founder of bioscience firm prior to his death. Case settled for less than the cost of defense.

  • Eiccholz v. Kritsas

    Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. On August 11, 1998, William Eiccholz underwent a radical retropubic prostatectomy for the removal of his cancerous prostate gland. The surgery was performed at Hinsdale Hospital by Dr. John Kritsas and Dr. Rebecca Preston. Dr. Kritsas used a Bookwalter self-retaining retractor to separate and hold the plaintiff’s abdominal muscle tissues. Following surgery, it was discovered that the plaintiff had lost function of his left lower extremity due to injury to the femoral nerve. The plaintiff claimed that Dr. Kritsas placed one of the retractor blades from the Bookwalter retractor on the psoas muscle or the femoral canal, resulting in undue pressure on the femoral canal and subsequent permanent nerve damage. The defense argued that the blades of the retractor were not long enough to reach the psoas muscle or the femoral canal and could not have been the cause of the plaintiff’s nerve damage. The defense offered several other alternative explanations for the nerve damage, including the possible stretching of the nerve when the surgical table was “broken” and tilted downward to allow the defendant greater access to the surgical field, a known risk of the surgery. The plaintiff asked the jury to award him $2,342,746.00. The case was tried from August 29, 2003 to September 5, 2003. On September 5, 2003, after deliberating for one hour, the jury returned a not guilty verdict.

  • Garcez v. Michel, et al.

    Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois. The minor plaintiff, April Garcez, was born on April 14, 1988. She claimed that Mercy Hospital residents failed to diagnose a placental abruption and incorrectly diagnosed that her mother was in pre-tern labor when she was, in fact, in full term labor. The minor plaintiff claimed that as a result of these breaches in the standard of care, she was born with hypoxic brain damage, which resulted in cerebral palsy, cognitive deficits, severe physical handicaps and speech and language problems.

    The minor plaintiff claimed that the consulting ob/gyn, Dr. Fritz R. Michel, who had been called by the residents to authorize tocolysis to stop the labor, breached the standard of care by failing to supervise the residents and by failing to ensure prompt delivery of the minor plaintiff once signs of abruption were noted. The minor plaintiff asked the jury to return a verdict of $15 million. After deliberating for three hours, the jury returned a not guilty verdict in favor of the defendants.

  • Hua v. Quest Laboratories

    Circuit Court of Cook County, IL. Represented a diagnostic testing laboratory in a wrongful discharge lawsuit brought by a United Airlines flight attendant. Plaintiff alleged that Quest falsely reported drug use, resulting in her termination.

  • Marroco v. Bergo, et al.

    U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Represented engineers in malpractice case filed by severely injured plaintiffs whose personal injury action was dismissed as a sanction when engineers disassembled parts during an inspection. Case settled for a nominal sum.

  • Patel v. Patel

    Circuit Court of Cook County, IL. Represented insurance agent in malpractice claim filed after insurance company voided life insurance policies based on alleged misrepresentations in the applications. Case settled for less than the cost of defense.

  • Aiello v. Agrest, et al.

    Currently defending a case of medical malpractice.  Plaintiff brought a lawsuit alleging defendants failed to exercise reasonable care by failing to diagnose glaucoma in the plaintiff over the course of a two decade physician-patient relationship.  Plaintiff’s claims involve allegations that defendants made alterations or additions to plaintiff’s chart.