Articles Posted in Best Business And Class Action Lawyers Near Chicago

A fan emailed MomoMilk LLC last fall, excited because she had heard they were opening a store in her home town of Chicago. But she was soon disappointed when she realized it was not the nationally recognized bakery that was coming to Chicago, but another company altogether taking advantage of the Milk Bar trademark and brand recognition.

A few years ago, chef Christina Tosi started a restaurant and bakery called “Milk Bar” in New York City, which features shakes, milk cookies, cakes, pies, and a variety of cereal products. The bakery was an instant success and was soon opening other stores throughout the city, then in other cities across the country. It also works with third-party distributors and sells its delicious products through its website. Although it does not currently have a store in Chicago, Tosi has publicly spoken in interviews about the fact that she has been considering opening new stores in cities like Chicago and Miami where the brand has a strong fan base.

The famous bakery operates under the name MomoMilk LLC and it has owned the trademark to the stylized milk since 2014. Now another restaurant has recently opened in Chicago, also calling itself “Milk Bar” and using the trademarked style milk that MomoMilk has been using in all its branding materials for the past five years. Continue reading ›

Our settlement for our client in a Chicago Libel, Defamation and Slander Suit was featured in the Cook County Record.
Our clients give us five star reviews for our work in Oak Brook and Chicago Libel Defamation and Slander cases:

Gerald Modory

 7 weeks ago

I really appreciate this opportunity to highly recommend Peter Lubin of the Law Offices of Lubin and Austemuehle. I recall in 2016 considering that I might be involved in litigation. This lead me to search Google for a lawyer as people might do. I saw the law offices of Ditomasso and Lubin which specialized in the problem I had. I called Mr. Lubin by phone and left a message. He returned my call a short time later. We discussed my case over the phone and I was impressed with Mr. Lubin’s insight and experiences. Although I really didn’t know him my “instincts” told me this was the right person. Unfortunately, my fears came into true and I was eventually sued in federal court months later. When I contacted Mr. Lubin again there was no hesitation that he would take the case. He guided me through the initial paperwork and fees and then did all the required notifications involving my insurance company. Mr. Lubin also asked me to send him the paperwork I had and reviewed same. He then started the process of representing me in court. He filed his appearance as the attorney of record and then set about defending me. Not only did Mr. Lubin defend me in the lawsuit, per se, but he also worked on dealing with my insurance company. During this process Mr. Lubin contacted me numerous times via text, phone, and email. He and his staff were well prepared for the work that was required. Mr. Lubin made me feel like I was the only one that he was representing. He was thoughtful, professional, and particularly mindful of how all this would be affecting me personally and financially. When it came to his fees he was considerate that monies would have to come from me and not my insurance company. He specifically counseled me to talk to my wife and family to see how his fees could be paid. He was never pushy about this. He allowed me to pay him a set amount over time. When I got discouraged he consistently encouraged me to have faith that I would prevail. He never promised that I would win but he did promise that he would not give up or abandon me. This was absolutely true. I also want to say that Mr. Lubin could not have done all this without his associates and staff. The staff are fantastic. I got updates from them frequently, and yes, I also got the invoices. But they were very kind about it. I want to let you know that Mr. Lubin was successful in defending me when I was sued. A federal judge dismissed the case, I believe, as a direct result of the superior legal briefs that Mr. Lubin and his staff developed. Mr. Lubin is a very aggressive attorney. Aggressive in the sense of defending his clients. I didn’t sleep so well during all this time, but I did sleep better knowing that Peter Lubin and his superior staff were working for me. Peter Lubin is a seasoned, experienced, and successful Libel, Defamation and Slander lawyer. In my opinion he is the best Chicago area Libel, Defamation, and Slander lawyer that anyone could have. Gerald Modory

Settlements end diamond wholesalers’ fraud, defamation disputes; lawyer accused of ‘extortion ring’

By Jonathan Bilyk Aug 24, 2018

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A legal dispute, in which one diamond wholesaler allegedly falsely accused another of fraud, has ended in a settlement to resolve a potential multi-million dollar defamation lawsuit, amid accusations the plaintiff in the original fraud suit was acting in coordination with an attorney facing a racketeering action over claims he has participated in an alleged scheme to use alleged fraud lawsuits to allegedly pressure jewelers into settlements.

On Aug. 17, a Chicago federal judge signed off on the settlement deal between diamond wholesalers David Cohen and Ofer Mizrahi. The case was terminated on Aug. 20.

The notice of voluntary dismissal filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois does not discuss or specify the terms of the dismissal.

However, in a letter to the Cook County Record, an attorney for Mizrahi said the settlement included a “full retraction and apology for all claims made” by Cohen against Mizrahi in an initial lawsuit filed in Cook County court.

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 Peter Lubin    DiTomasso Lubin

The matter had landed first in the courts in January, when Cohen, through his attorney David Hammervold, of Nashville, Tenn., filed a complaint accusing Mizrahi of selling him a diamond without informing Cohen the diamond had been internally laser drilled, was thus worth less than he had been led to believe.

Cohen had demanded at least $1.5 million in damages in that action.

That case was also ultimately settled and dismissed with prejudice on Aug. 15, but not before Mizrahi through his attorney, Peter Lubin, of the firm of DiTomasso Lubin Austermuehle P.C., of Oakbrook Terrace, asked the judge in June to sanction Cohen and his attorney for bringing the lawsuit in the first place.

In that motion for sanctions, Mizrahi’s attorney said the lawsuit was brought in an effort to “extort” a settlement from Mizrahi, after a customer of Mizrahi’s decided to directly deal with Mizrahi, rather than use Cohen as a “second middleman,” exacerbating what Mizrahi said was Cohen’s declining business, which “was losing tens of thousands of dollars a year” before the incident at the heart of Cohen’s lawsuit.

Later in June, Mizrahi followed his Cook County court motion for sanctions with a defamation lawsuit filed in Chicago federal court.

In that lawsuit, again filed through attorney Lubin, Mizrahi detailed accusations against Cohen and his attorney, Hammervold, who they said is accused in a separate action pending in federal court in the U.S. Fifth Circuit of participating in an “extortion ring” in which the lawyers “allegedly use the lawsuits they file as a jumping off point to begin defamatory smear campaigns against … jewelers’ businesses” to secure settlements that pay the lawyers “contingency fees.”

In the defamation lawsuit, Mizrahi accused Cohen and Hammervold of using “these same tactics” in the Cook County case, including issuing a “defamatory press release” which was “eventually picked up by both national and international media outlets,” accusing Mizrahi of harming his business.

“In fact, there were no lost reputation damages and thus there could not possibly be punitive damages of anything more than a few thousand dollars and certainly not the $1.5 million falsely represented by Cohen,” Mizrahi asserted in his defamation complaint.

In the defamation lawsuit, Mizrahi had requested actual damages of at least $2 million, and punitive damages of at least $6 million.

Continue reading ›

Our clients give us 5-star reviews for winning judgments or obtaining favorable settlements for them in used car fraud cases where they could have lost 10s of thousands of dollars:
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Although non-compete agreements were originally invented to keep executives from running off to competitors with trade secrets and/or client relationships, many businesses have started taking advantage of noncompete agreements by including them in employment contracts with all their workers – even those at the bottom rung of the corporate ladder.

Workers earning minimum wage (or close to it) doing things like making sandwiches and entering data into a computer system are being made to sign employment agreements that prohibit them from working in any capacity for a similar company. Despite the fact that these are unskilled jobs (often held by people who don’t even have a high school diploma), and certainly don’t include access to any important trade secrets, workers are being made to sign such agreements as a condition of employment. And when agreeing to all the terms of the contract is the difference between getting the job and going without a paycheck, most workers don’t consider it much of a choice.

Although signing the employment contract might get them the job, it makes it much harder for them to move up the corporate ladder because the non-compete agreement often means they can’t leverage their experience to get a better paying position with another company. Their options are to try to move up the ladder in their own company or stay in their position where they’ll continue to earn the same low wage.

If employees try to take a new job in violation of the non-compete agreement, they can be prevented from doing so or even made to leave their new job after they’ve settled into it. In many cases, the clause prevents workers from even looking for new employment or asking for a raise for fear of retaliation from their employer. And when they’re not allowed to seek out a similar position with another company that pays better, they have no leverage to ask for a raise. Continue reading ›

When a water main was damaged by work performed by a telecommunications company, causing a pharmacy to flood and sustain damage, the circuit court did not err in granting summary judgment to the insurance company. The Illinois appellate court found that the policy’s exclusion of coverage for damages relating to water from under the surface of the ground applied to water that originated underground, even if the damage caused by that water occurred above ground.

In December 2015, Prekshot Professional Pharmacy was operating in leased space in Peoria, Illinois. Preckshot had a contract of insurance with its insurer, Pharmacists Mutual. AT&T and its subcontractor were performing directional boring behind Preckshot’s premises. The boring damaged a water service line near the Preckshot premises, causing a discharge of water that flooded the Preckshot pharmacy above the ground.

Preckshot subsequently filed a claim with Pharmacists Mutual pursuant to its insurance policy. Pharmacists dispatched an investigator to determine the precise cause of the damages. The inspector concluded that the water from the ruptured line flowed through under a concrete slab and came up through the ground to infiltrate the interior of the pharmacy. Pharmacists then denied Preckshot’s claim, stating that coverage was excluded by a provision in the policy which excluded perils caused by water below the surface of the ground. Continue reading ›

When a shipment of sand was tainted by excess moisture, the contract between the two companies involved in the transaction required that any suit be filed within four months of the delivery. As the plaintiff corporation’s suit was filed over two years later, it was untimely.

In 2014, Vesuvius Corporation and American Commercial Lines, LLC (“ACBL”), entered into a shipping contract to transport olivine sand from New Orleans, Louisiana to Vesuvius’ facility in Wurtland, Kentucky, by way of a river barge. The shipment arrived in January 2015, at which time Vesuvius’ employees inspected the cargo and found it damaged by excess moisture. The employees notified ACBL, and ACBL arranged for a surveyor to perform an inspection that same day. The surveyor found no structural defect in the barge, and instead concluded that the sand was wet when it was loaded and that some of that moisture had evaporated during transit, condensed on the overhead portion of the cargo space, and dripped back onto the sand. The surveyor filed his report with ACBL on Feb. 23, and ACBL promptly contacted Vesuvius to disclaim liability. Continue reading ›

Best-Chicago-Commercial-Litigation-Lawyers-200x300Knowing where to bring a lawsuit and what state’s laws to apply can have a huge impact on the success of business litigation. Courts have developed extensive and complicated rules and procedures for determining where a lawsuit should be brought and which jurisdiction’s laws to apply, but that procedure is rarely simple or straightforward. Conflicts between the laws of two or more states can complicate the matter further. Agreeing in advance to jurisdiction and venue can provide certainty and save a great deal of time and money in the unfortunate event litigation does ensue. For this reason, companies often address in the contract itself how any disputes or litigation will be handled. A common example includes “forum selection” or “choice of venue” provisions, which identify a specific state (or even a specific county within a state) as the proper jurisdiction and venue for litigation.

Forum selection is a particularly important part of a contract when the parties are from different jurisdictions, especially when the laws of those jurisdictions differ significantly from one another. A forum selection provision gives a business the security of knowing that any litigation will take place in a familiar location applying a familiar set of substantive laws. However, a poorly worded forum selection provision may not provide the security hoped for as a recent opinion from Delaware’s Chancery Court in a partnership dispute case demonstrates. The case, In re Bay Hills Emerging Partners I, L.P., et al, involved the issue of whether a forum selection provision in a limited partnership agreement required all lawsuits to be filed exclusively in Kentucky. Continue reading ›

download-300x150download-1-300x150Super Lawyers named Chicago and Oak Brook business trial attorney Peter Lubin a Super Lawyer in the Categories of Class Action, Business Litigation, and Consumer Rights Litigation. Patrick Austermuehle of the Firm was named a Rising Star again.  Peter Lubin and Patrick Austermuehle have consistently won this honor which is only given to 5% of Illinois’ attorneys each year.

Lubin Austermuehle’s Oak Brook and Chicago business trial lawyers have over thirty years experience in litigating complex class action, consumer rights and business and commercial litigation disputes. We handle libel and defamation cases, First Amendment issues and emergency business lawsuits involving injunctions, and TROS, covenant not to compete, franchise, distributor and dealer wrongful termination and trade secret lawsuits and many different kinds of business disputes involving shareholders, partnerships, closely held businesses and employee breaches of fiduciary duty. We also assist businesses and business owners who are victims of fraud.



Lubin Austermuehle’s Wheaton, Naperville, and Aurora litigation attorneys have more than two and half decades of experience helping business clients unravel the complexities of Illinois and out-of-state business laws. Our Chicago business, commercial, class-action, and consumer litigation lawyers represent individuals, family businesses and enterprises of all sizes in a variety of legal disputes, including disputes among partners and shareholders as well as lawsuits between businesses and consumer rights, auto fraud, and wage claim individual and class action cases. In every case, our goal is to resolve disputes as quickly and successfully as possible, helping business clients protect their investments and get back to business as usual. From offices in Oak Brook, near Naperville and Glen Ellyn, we serve clients throughout Illinois and the Midwest.

Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency which is an electronic form of cash. It is decentralized without the need for a central bank or administrator. The need for an intermediary is none, as it can be sent
from user-to-user. Since its technology is relatively new, litigation surrounding this type of exchange is being closely followed by those who have invested in it and those who are wanting
to know of the direction of the future in exchange. Of course, it would not be long until the way transactions took place would be tested in the courts on an international and local level.
Since its reach has no real boundaries, we will look to a decision held in Shenzhen, China. A ruling was made involving the dispute over an equity transfer case. The matter then went before
the International Court of Arbitration. The currencies that the case concerned included: Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Bitcoin Diamond. There was so much of a buzz that the decision generated
that the Cryptocurrency news provider posted:

“Chinese court confirms Bitcoin protected by law. Shenzhen Court of International Arbitration ruled a case involving cryptos. Inside the verdict: CN law does not forbid owning & transferring bitcoin, which should be protected by law bc its property nature and economic value.”

The case, therefore, has reached to affect property and economic rights as viewed by the law. How it affects us here in the USA is yet to be seen. The decision applied followed a ruling held
in Moscow. The very classification of Bitcoin and other digital currencies as “property” could even lead to tax implications. Let’s remember this: Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are not
considered currencies, and are not backed by the government or law. However, they are not illegal. That is the backdrop that is being worked within the dealing with the relatively new medium
of exchange. Basically, the ruling means that there is no prohibition against Bitcoin ownership and transfer in China. Continue reading ›

A suburban business in Chicago is under scrutiny for implementation of a system in which the way the business allegedly sterilized caused emissions of a cancer-causing substance. The operational facility provides sterilization services to the medical, pharmaceutical and food industries.  Ironically, the health damage by its emissions cause might make locals worse off.

Consequently, a change was made to equipment that was being used had been installed.  Governor Bruce Rauner then, eventually, requested closing the plant completely which was also co-owned by his former private equity firm.  It was not looking good on him and locals were very angry.  Whether or not, and the type of action that would have been taken in circumstances, but for, that situation are not known. Local politicians added pressure and since we are dealing with cancer, people are not taking this issue lightly at all.

Right now, as it stands, the Attorney General, Lisa Madigan, believed that further investigations of air quality with analysis by experts would be necessary in order to make a case.  Perhaps, the one-off situation is not enough to gauge that there has been negligence or any breach that is substantial.  This would constitute as information that only a state or federal Environmental Protection Agency would be able to give in such circumstances.

It was the likelihood of the emissions ranged from “probably carcinogenic” to “carcinogenic to humans,” that became grounds for tests to be expedited.  It is speculated that the new system is less harmful, but can the damage be reversed?  Even a reduction by 90 percent cannot do much to whatever is out there in the atmosphere.  These issues are problematic, affect multiple residents’ health and will require in-depth investigation.  A school is even within the vicinity of impact.  If a class action arises, this will be one not taken lightly. Continue reading ›

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