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Clifford Law Offices, with a consortium of law firms, filed a lawsuit Friday (April 5, 2013) in federal district court on behalf of seven Illinois local governments to collect unpaid hotel taxes from a number of online travel agencies.

Among the towns suing the online companies are the cities of Warrenville, Oakbrook Terrace and Rockford and the villages of Bedford Park, Oak Lawn, Orland Hills and Willowbrook.  Together they have filed a class action in the district court for the Northern District of Illinois to address ongoing tax evasion by more than a dozen out-of-state companies including Expedia, Travelocity and Priceline that market and sell hotel rooms in Illinois but who fail to pay or remit taxes on the amount customers pay to stay in those rooms.

These companies have been named as defendants in a number of lawsuits across the United States for similar practices.  Some of these cases have resulted in the companies being ordered to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in taxes and penalties for their conduct.

Courts have recognized the inequity of the online companies competing with local Illinois hotels but the online companies fail to pay taxes on the full rates charged, thereby maintaining a competitive advantage.  “The lawsuit filed in Illinois seeks to even the playing field,” said Thomas K. Prindable of Clifford Law Offices.  “There needs to be greater transparency in exactly what these companies are charging its online customers.”

Clifford Law Offices, along with Paul A. O’Grady of Peterson, Johnson & Murray in Chicago, John W. Crongeyer of Crongeyer Law Firm in Atlanta, and William Q. Bird and Kristen L. Beightol of Bird Law Group in Atlanta are representing the plaintiff municipalities.

A press conference was held yesterday at Clifford Law Offices, 120 N. LaSalle St., 31st Floor, Chicago.  The press conference was streamed live on the internet at the firm’s website at www.CliffordLaw.com.

For further information, contact Michael Krzak, partner at Clifford Law Offices, 312-899-9090.

www.CliffordLaw.com

www.CliffordAviationLaw.com

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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