U.S. Seventh Circuit - The FindLaw 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

August 2017 News

Subway Gets a Refund in Footlong Settlement

In a rare twist, Subway is going to get some bread back.

After a class action challenged the length of its footlong sandwich, Subway settled by promising to measure up and pay $520,000 to the plaintiffs' attorneys. An appeals court reversed in Subway Footlong Sandwich Marketing and Sales Practices Litigation, however, because the settlement did nothing meaningful for consumers.

"The settlement acknowledges as much when it says that uniformity in bread length is impossible due to the natural variability of the bread-baking process," said the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, calling the settlement "worthless."

And with that twist of the knife, the court sliced off the attorneys' dough.

Court to Rehear 'Making a Murderer' Case

Call it 'Making a Murderer -- the Sequel.'

That's because Brendan Dassey, a convicted murderer featured in the Netflix documentary, will get another chance at infamy or redemption. The U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals has agreed to rehear a decision that he involuntarily confessed to raping and killing Teresa Halbach at a salvage yard in 2005.

Dassey told investigators that he and his uncle Stephen Avery committed the crimes. In the documentary, filmmakers told the story about how Avery was wrongfully convicted and spent 18 years in prison.

Police officers in the Chicago PD's Bureau of Organized Crime filed a class action case against the department alleging unpaid overtime for checking emails, sending and receiving text messages and calls during off-duty time. The case, Allen v. City of Chicago, involves a class of 52 officers that were seeking unpaid overtime. Unfortunately for the officers, the district court ruled in favor of the department after a bench trial to a magistrate judge.

Making matters worse for the officers, on appeal to the Seventh Circuit, a three judge panel affirmed the lower courts findings, and refused to disturb the judgment. The appellate court found that the officers failed to establish their case, and that the lower court did not err in reaching their decision that department did not prevent the officers from claiming the unpaid overtime.

ADA Judgment Affirmed Against City

Biagio Stragapede was a city water-worker in Evanston, IL until one day when he tripped on some steps.

It was not serious, but the city placed him on leave and later terminated him because it said he was a safety threat. He had other problems, too, like driving through an intersection without looking and reporting to the wrong job sites.

But the real problem was that Stragapede had recently returned to work from a serious brain injury, and the city didn't think he could do his job. A jury rejected the city's rationale, and so did the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Stragapede v. City of Evanston.