The DNAinfo archives brought to you by WNYC.
Read the press release here.

Double Door Eviction Case Delayed Again, Will New Twist Save Club?

By Alisa Hauser | June 20, 2016 6:09pm | Updated on June 20, 2016 8:15pm
 Double door sign at night.
Double door sign at night.
View Full Caption
DNAinfo/Alisa Hauser

DALEY CENTER —  Double Door, a legendary music club that has hosted the Rolling Stones and Liz Phair, among others, could remain open thanks to a legal twist advanced by its lawyer during an eviction trial on Monday.

For months, the club has been battling its landlord, which has been trying to evict it. Cook County Circuit Court Judge Orville Hambright, Jr. said last week that he planned to finally rule on the case after closing arguments took place Monday.

But the legal twist caused the judge to continue the case until Wednesday.

"At this point, I need to see the whole case here," Hambright said.

Closing arguments were derailed when Cary Schiff, a lawyer for Double Door owner Sean Mulroney, pointed out that the building's landlord had not replied in a timely manner to the club's arguments that it should be allowed to stay.

At issue was the fact that William Dorsey, a lawyer for building owner Brian Strauss, did not respond to Mulroney's Jan. 8 motion within 28 days.

Dorsey didn't file a reply until last Friday and admitted to Hambright that the late filing was "an oversight.” Read Dorsey's response to Double Door's affirmative defense.

After Monday's nearly two-hour long hearing, Dorsey declined to comment further on the matter.

The Double Door has claimed that it had exercised the option to renew its lease, and that by Strauss initiating the eviction suit against the club, he was breaching the terms of the lease. The club also claimed that Strauss had waived any objections to Double Door's right to exercise a three-year option to extend the terms of their lease.

The judge told Strauss after the trial on Monday that he is in a position of "wait and see."

"Chips are going to fall like they may, Mr. Strauss, and if it's based on a technicality, you all have an opportunity to still work this out. I have not made a ruling," Hambright told Strauss.

After months of legal wrangling and settlement talks, the trial started May 18. 

Strauss, whose family has owned the Milwaukee Avenue property since 1977, has been trying to evict Double Door since early November, after the club's lease ended on Oct. 31.

Mulroney expressed optimism over the club's future after court concluded on Monday.

"We hope to work it out. If we don't, we'll find another home," Mulroney said.

And in the event of possibly losing in Circuit Court before Hambright, Mulroney indicated that he would appeal to appellate court, a process that could drag the eviction case on for another two years, by which point that even if Double Door had been allowed to stay an extra three years, the lease the parties have been arguing about would be over.

Related coverage:

Double Door Eviction Trial Ends, Judge Could Rule By Monday (June 14) 

Double Door Should Get Zoning Change, Alderman Says, But It's Not Clear Why (June 2)

Double Door Landlord Tells Club to Get Out on First Day of Trial (May 18)

Double Door Eviction Case Still In Limbo, 'Pretrial Talks' Continued (May 12)

Double Door Lawyer 'Hopeful' Club Stays As Case Heads to Trial (April 12)

Double Door Eviction Delayed as Court Fight Continues (Jan. 27)

Double Door Eviction Fight: Music to Continue as Case Drags On (Jan. 8)

Double Door Building Sale to Downtown Investors Underway, Records Show (Jan. 5)

Double Door's Landlord Could be Close to Selling Iconic Club's Building (Dec. 17, 2015)

Lawyer in Double Door Eviction Case: 'Time for Them to Go' (Dec. 10, 2015)

Double Door Liquors, Iconic Wicker Park Music Venue, Facing Eviction (Dec. 3, 2015)

Vintage Bass Guitar Missing After Double Door Owner Plays Diabetes Benefit (June 19, 2015)

Friends Rally to Help Double Door Worker Facing $46,000 on Medical Bills (Dec. 5, 2014)

Double Door to Open Third Entrance For First Time (July 10, 2013)

For more neighborhood news, listen to DNAinfo Radio here: