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As a Plaintiff’s lawyer I’m always concerned about naming the right corporate defendant. People frequently set up numerous corporations and LLC’s to protect them from liability. They often have similar names. If you look at the Cyberdrive website and look up any Corporation you will find numerous ones with similar names. To make matters worse, people who own a lot of rental property typically set up one big LLC with a different sub – LLC for each property. This can make suing the proper defendant very difficult.

This came up in the recent case of Angell vs. Stantefort Family Holdings LLC. In Angell the plaintiff was being shown a mobile home which she was considering purchasing. The defendant had failed to place a grate over a hole in one of the mobile homes. Plaintiff stepped in the hole and was seriously injured. She filed suit, naming Tristar Estates LLC , who owned the ground as the defendant

In its answer the defendant was evasive as to who owned the property. They objected to the allegation as to whether or not they owned the mobile home. Then they indicated that Stanefort Real Estate Group LLC did not manage occupy released the unit . It denied the existence of any leases contracts or similar agreements with regard to the mobile home. Stanefort was owned by an irrevocable trust entitled the Stantefort Family 2012 Irrevocable Trust. Brian Gallagher was the CEO of the defendant company. There were at least eleven companies related to the irrevocable trust. Gallagher was also the chief operating officer of Stantefort Property Management Inc. There was also another company called Midwest Home Eentals LLC which owned the mobile homes and should have been the defendant in the lawsuit.

In the case of Center Partners, LTD v. Growth Head GP, LLC, state of Illinois Supreme Court clarifies the law about waiver of the attorney-client privilege in a business transaction.

Anything said between an attorney and their client is normally privileged. Parties cannot get at the substance of the conversation during discovery. In this case the attorney client privilege came up in a business transaction. The parties to an agreement all discussed with their attorneys, various aspects of the transaction. There was litigation over the transaction. During the discovery depositions one of the parties testified as follows:

“[Stefanek]: Well, we all signed it, so it would seem pretty logical that-you know, that-that anything significant would have been discussed with everybody, yes.

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