Over the last 130 years, Taft’s appellate attorneys have briefed and argued cases in federal and state courts across the country. Due to the depth of our experience, our attorneys know how to navigate a case effectively through the courts. Because of our recognized experience before reviewing courts, our attorneys are specifically brought into cases after trial to represent both established clients and new clients on appeal.
While there is no formula for handling every appeal, our team is suited for any challenge. Our approach is simple:
We focus. Our appellate attorneys have in-depth knowledge of substantive areas of law. For example, we are experienced in disputes involving contracts, insurance, and anti-trust regulations, as evidenced by our role in the successful results obtained in ATA Airlines, Inc. v. Federal Express Corp. (represented Fortune 500 company in an appeal from a $70 million breach of contract jury verdict); Philadelphia Indemnity Ins. Co. v. Chicago Title Ins. Co., et al. (represented title company in insurance coverage dispute); and Minn-Chem, Inc., et al. v. Agrium Inc., et al (represented group of domestic agricultural companies on international anti-trust claim). That knowledge allows our attorneys to devote their time to crafting sound, winning arguments.
We work. We are creative and collaborative, developing persuasive arguments that are well-researched and well-written. From start to finish, our attorneys are committed to putting our clients in the best position possible, not only in terms of winning individual cases for our clients, but also in terms of shaping the law in a positive way to assure our clients’ long-term interests. For example, in Corre Opportunities Fund, LP v. Emmis Communications Corp., our appellate team collaborated closely with our corporate client’s general counsel and Taft’s business attorneys to win affirmance in a case of first impression recognizing unique voting rights of corporations under a state statute.
We innovate. While a winning decision is our goal for every client, we recognize that some wins take place outside of the courtroom. Our practice group includes former U.S. Court of Appeals clerks, state supreme court clerks, and state appellate court clerks, giving us extraordinary insight and experience as to the inner workings of and informal procedures in each forum in which we practice.
We take pride in what we do. The best appellate practitioners are at once experts and generalists. They have the expertise to understand complex real world issues and the general knowledge to explain those issues in persuasive terms the reviewing court can easily apply. That is what our appellate team does best, combining top-flight legal analysis with exceptional persuasive skills. Not only are our clients pleased with the wins we have achieved for them, but numerous legal publications have noted our appellate accomplishments and experience. Our appellate attorneys are also consistently ranked in such publications as Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers in America, Benchmark Litigation and Leading Lawyers.
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Some of our representative wins include:
- Turubchuk v. Southern Illinois Asphalt Company, Inc., No. 18-3507 (7th Cir. 2020)
Successfully argued for the reversal of an $8.1 million verdict entered against Taft client Southern Illinois Asphalt Company, Inc. (SIAC). The case concerned a negligent misrepresentation claim filed against SIAC years after an underlying case against SIAC arising from a fatal car crash in southern Illinois settled.
- Phoenix Lighting Group, L.L.C. v. Genlyte Thomas Group, L.L.C., Slip Opinion No. 2020-Ohio-1056
Received a favorable opinion from the Ohio Supreme Court on behalf of our client, a lighting fixtures company. The decision ended more than 10 years of contentious litigation. At issue in the case was whether the prevailing party in a business tort lawsuit between two companies should be entitled to an enhancement of its attorneys’ fees award. The Ohio Supreme Court held that the enhancement was improper and modified Ohio law accordingly. Taft knew this was an issue of interest to the Ohio Supreme Court, and tailored our arguments to achieve this favorable result.
- Enbridge Energy, Ltd. P’ship v. Oldcastle APG South, Inc., 2019 IL App (3d) 180060-U
Represented a leading Midwest manufacturer of architectural masonry and hardscape products in appeal of a case involving an oil spill, which the plaintiff said was the result of our client's failure to maintain a water service line on its property. The appeal led to a reversal of the $45 million verdict.
- Centegra Hospital-McHenry v. Mercy Crystal Lake Hosp. & Med. Ctr., Inc., 2019 IL App (2d) 180731
Represented a non-profit health care provider and hospital system in successfully arguing for the reversal of a trial court decision blocking the construction of a hospital in Crystal Lake, Illinois. The case concerned an effort by our client's competitors to block a hospital project in court after failing to block it before the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board, which earlier approved the project. The Taft team convinced the appellate court to reverse the trial court’s order and reinstate the Board’s approval for the project, allowing our client's construction to move forward.
- City of Hammond v. Herman & Kittles Properties, Inc., 119 N.E.3d 70 (Ind. 2019)
Represented owner of multi-family apartment complex in resisting payment of excessive rental registration fees, where city argued state statute restricting fees violated constitutional prohibition against special legislation. Resulted in a judgment in favor of the client from the Indiana Supreme Court.
- Conn v. Bic Graphic USA Manufacturing Co., Inc.
Represented employer in appeal of case involving failure to accommodate and disability discrimination under Minnesota Human Rights Act and retaliation claims under Minnesota Workers Compensation Act.
- Pflugh v. Indianapolis Historic Preservation Comm'n, 108 N.E.3d 904 (Ind. T. App. 2018), trans denied.
Represented developer in appeal of zoning case brought by a remonstrator.
- Ali v. Alliance Home Care, LLC, 53 N.E.3d 420 (Ind. Ct. App. 2016)
Represented home healthcare company in appeal of case regarding defamation and other tort claims brought by a former employee.
- United States ex rel. Pileco, Inc. v. Slurry Systems
Represented foreign manufacturer on breach of contract claims.
- 5200 Keystone Ltd. Realty, LLC v. Filmcraft Laboratories, Inc.
Represented landowner in claims under Indiana’s Environmental Legal Action Statute.
- Matthews v. Chicago Transit Authority
Represented public transportation company on pension-related issues.
- ISBA v. Tuzzolino
Represented insurance company regarding a rescission issue.
- Pusateri v. Peoples Gas Light & Coke Company
Represented utility company involving the validity of whistle-blower’s claim.
- Citizens Opposing Pollution v. ExxonMobil Coal, USA
Represented major oil company involving an environmental cleanup issue.
- Powell v. Dean Foods Company, et al.
Represented plaintiff in a production liability case on substitution of judge motion.
- Weems v. American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, Council 31
Represented government official regarding an injunction barring the closing of a state prison.
- Cynthia Simpkins v. CSX Transportation
Represented plaintiff in an asbestos case involving second-hand exposure.
- Michael E. Avery, et al. v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Ins. Co.
Represented major insurance company regarding a recusal issue on the court.
- Bowens v. Quinn
Represented former governor of Illinois regarding his parole and pardon powers.
- American River Transp. Co. v. Ryan
Represented plaintiff in a maritime matter.
- Illinois School Dist. Agency v. Pacific Ins. Co. Ltd.
Represented school district agency in coverage dispute.
- Schmude v. Sheahan
Represented attorney in a sanctions matter.
- Eychaner, et al. v. Theodore Gross, et al.
Represented university over the issue of donor intent in creating a trust.
- Kipnis v. Mandel Metals, Inc.
Represented corporation on breach of contract claim brought by former executive.