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Amending Your Complaint Affects Appeal Rights

01 Apr 2003

Where plaintiff filed a forth amended complaint, after a Court within a prior complaint was dismissed with prejudice under Rule 304(a), the Court's dismissal order can no longer be appealed.  The Appeals Court found this to be true even where the plaintiff filed a timely notice of appeal.  The decision was based on Foxcroft doctrine, which holds that a party who files an amended complaint waives any objection to the trial court's rulings on former complaints.  However, it is important to note that the harshness of this rule can be avoided when a simple footnote or paragraph is added to the amended pleadings notifying the defendants and the court that plaintiff is preserving the dismissed portion of the former complaint for appeal.  Zawadzka v. Catholic Bishop of Chicago, No. 1-02-1600, 2003 Ill.App. LEXIS 54 (1st Dist. Jan. 22, 2003).

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