Scopelitis, Garvin, Light, Hanson & Feary, P.C.


Law Alert: Illinois Appellate Court Issues BIPA Ruling that May Drastically Increase Exposure for Transportation Companies Operating in Illinois

by Chip Andrewscavage, Andrew J. Butcher, Gregory M. Feary

December 17, 2021

This week, an Illinois Appellate Court issued a ruling with the potential to dramatically increase liability under Illinois' Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), which could lead to many more class action lawsuits against transportation companies operating in Illinois. Concluding BIPA's plain language "establishes that it applies to each and every capture and use of plaintiff's fingerprint or hand scan," the Illinois Appellate Court opened the door for BIPA damage claims for each scan of a fingerprint (e.g., time clocks), facial recognition capture (e.g., devices that detect driver fatigue), and even voice recognition capture (e.g., various security lock devices). The use of biometric scans is now commonplace across the transportation industry. But absent a compliant BIPA policy, transportation companies using this technology could face thousands of dollars in damages for each scan under the reasoning in Watson v. Legacy Healthcare Financial Services, Inc., 2021 IL App (1st) 210279 (Ill. App. 2021).

Contact Scopelitis Partners Greg Feary, Andrew Butcher, or Chip Andrewscavage for questions about this ruling. 

Full Version