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In May Laird appeared before the Illinois Supreme Court as co-counsel in a seminal case involving a class of taxpayers and individuals and institutions who pay foreclosure fees in the State of Illinois. The case challenges the Illinois Housing Development Act that imposes a fee on litigants as a prerequisite to their access to Illinois courts. The plaintiffs argued equal protection violations and that the offending legislation constitutes a general welfare program that permits the Executive Branch and even municipal officials, including City of Chicago officials, to use the funds for general revenue rather than restricting the use of those funds solely to address persons already within the court system. Consistent with his tireless efforts on behalf of plaintiffs, Laird believes that this legislation should be set aside because it actually imposes a tax, not a fee, on litigants that is used support a general welfare program.

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