* We talked about this yesterday, but here’s the AP…
A settlement in the workplace retaliation lawsuit against Democratic U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth is final and the plaintiffs can’t back out even if no paperwork was signed, the Illinois attorney general’s office said Thursday.
One of two women who sued Duckworth said Wednesday they wanted out of the agreement because they felt the congresswoman was tarnishing their reputations by still calling their allegations false. They said they also were upset that Duckworth’s campaign referred to their lawsuit as frivolous shortly after the agreement was announced last month. […]
Butler did not immediately return calls for comment Thursday. The attorney for her and Goins, Matthew Ferrell, did not respond to a message relayed to him by his office.
Randall Schmidt, a law professor at the University of Chicago, said the general rule is settlement agreements are enforceable even if they’re not put in writing.
“The fact that it’s not reduced to writing isn’t in and of itself enough to back out,” he said.
* Daily Herald…
Goins and Butler, speaking with the Daily Herald again on Thursday, said that throughout settlement conferences this spring, they had been assured by their attorney that until the paperwork was signed, they had not committed to anything.
The women met again with their attorney Tuesday night. “We told him we wanted to continue to trial. He never said that wasn’t possible. He said we would still be proceeding to trial unless an agreement was signed.”
The attorney general’s office said Thursday that while it views the agreement as final, that no settlement agreement had yet been submitted to the courts.
A spokeswoman at the Union County courthouse confirmed an Aug. 15 trial date for the case remains on Judge Mark Boie’s docket.
Still, Kirk’s campaign on Thursday called the settlement news a “Duckworth implosion.” Campaign manager Kevin Artl said information given by the attorney general’s office about the settlement last month was “clearly misleading.”
The plaintiffs told the Daily Herald the settlement was about $40,000, with $21,000 of that amount paying for attorney fees and another $9,000 for each plaintiff.
The attorney general’s office, however, disputes that claim, saying the $26,000 settlement covered all costs, including damages paid to each client.
Bottom line: The judge in this case is going to have to decide what the heck to do.
*** UPDATE *** NBC 5 clears up the point about the docket…
“We’ve obviously seen the stories, but that doesn’t change that we have a settlement agreement,” Attorney General’s office communications Director Maura Possley told Ward Room. […]
Possley told Ward Room that there is no scheduled trial.
But, according to the Union County Clerk’s office, the case is still on the docket because a settlement order to remove it hasn’t been received. Possley claimed the case is simply still on the docket from May.