Appeal Dismissed for Lack of Jurisdiction
Clausen Miller Appellate Practice Group attorney Paul Esposito recently notched a defense victory on appeal when the Appellate Court in Chicago dismissed a plaintiff’s appeal for lack of appellate jurisdiction. Plaintiff was the administrator of a decedent’s estate. Her decedent was killed in a rear-end accident on a Chicago expressway. A jury returned a verdict for defendants because plaintiff failed to prove that decedent consciously experienced pain and suffering prior to death. When plaintiff herself died following the judgment, her attorney filed a notice of appeal before obtaining a substitute plaintiff.
The Appellate Court agreed with Esposito that once plaintiff died, her attorney lacked the authority to take any action on her behalf. He needed to obtain the appointment of a successor administrator. Having failed to timely do so, the attorney’s notice of appeal was a nullity that could not confer appellate jurisdiction on the Court. Another reminder that the minefield of appellate practice is best navigated by experienced appellate practitioners. For more information contact Paul at firstname.lastname@example.org.