Declaratory Judgment Sufficient To Establish Appellate Standing

The Dunns sued Lawrence Patterson, their lawyer, claiming estate documents Patterson drafted contained certain provisions that were void because they were against public policy. After the Dunns won a declaratory judgment in the trial court, Patterson appealed.

The Dunns argued that Patterson did not have standing to appeal the declaratory judgment. The Third District Illinois Appellate Court made short work of the argument. The court politely found “this contention to be inconsistent with the fact that plaintiffs named Patterson as the defendant in this suit and obtained a judgment against him.” The appellate court stated the “entry of a judgment itself constitutes legally cognizable damages,” which was sufficient to establish standing.

I can’t say it is a singular example, but I do not recall reading about a plaintiff arguing that a party he sued did not have standing. Patterson got a reversal of the judgment, too. Read the whole case, Dunn v. Patterson, Nos. 3-07-0881, 3-08-0350 (11/18/09), by clicking here.