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Friday, March 28, 2014

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 3 today (and 1 NFP)

For publication opinions today (3):

In In Re Paternity of D.T. (Minor Child) Diamond T. Parks (Mother) v. Deante Rashon Tate (Father), a 10-page opinion, Judge Crone writes:

Diamond T. Parks (“Mother”) is a Mississippi resident. In 2011, she filed an action against Deante Rashon Tate (“Father”) in a Neshoba County, Mississippi court (“Mississippi court”), seeking to establish his paternity of her two-year-old son, D.T., and to enforce child support and obtain Medicaid benefits. Because Father resides in Anderson, Indiana, the Mississippi Department of Human Services sought enforcement assistance in Madison Circuit Court (“trial court”). Several months later, the trial court held a hearing, during which Father admitted to paternity. Although D.T. had resided with Mother for his first two years and was listed as a Mississippi resident, he was physically present with Father in Anderson due to a death in Father’s family. Shortly after paternity was established, Father sought custody of D.T. in the Indiana trial court. Due to defective service, Mother was unaware of the Indiana custody hearing and did not appear. The trial court awarded custody to Father.

Mother now appeals, claiming that the trial court lacked subject matter jurisdiction under the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (“UIFSA”) to make a custody determination and that the trial court lacked personal jurisdiction over her due to defective service of process. Finding that the trial court lacked subject matter jurisdiction, we reverse and remand for proceedings consistent with this decision.

In Jason and Justina Kramer v. Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Inc., a 15-page, 2-1 opinion, Judge Najam writes:
Jason Kramer and Justina Kramer appeal the trial court’s entry of summary judgment in favor of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Inc. (“Catholic Charities”) on the Kramers’ complaint alleging that Catholic Charities was negligent in facilitating a pre-adoption placement of a child with them. The Kramers present several issues for our review which we consolidate and restate as whether the trial court erred when it concluded that a release executed by the Kramers bars their negligence claims against Catholic Charities. * * *

We hold that the releases executed by the Kramers do not bar their claims because they do not explicitly contemplate Catholic Charities’ negligence. Further, the risk of Catholic Charities’ negligence in not checking the putative father registry prior to placement was not inherent in the pre-adoptive placement. In support of its summary judgment motion, Catholic Charities did not satisfy its burden to make a prima facie showing that there are no genuine issues of material fact and that it is entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Thus, the burden to prove the existence of a genuine issue of material fact did not shift to the Kramers. The trial court erred when it entered summary judgment in favor of Catholic Charities. Reversed and remanded for further proceedings.

CRONE, J., concurs.
BAKER, J., dissents with separate opinion. [which begins, at p. 11] I respectfully dissent with the majority’s conclusion that the trial court erred in entering summary judgment for Catholic Charities. In my view, Catholic Charities satisfied its burden and made a prima facie showing that there are no genuine issues of material fact and that it is entitled to judgment as a matter of law.

In Matthew Pavlovich v. State of Indiana , a 27-page, 2-1 opinion, Judge Brown writes:
Matthew Pavlovich appeals his convictions for child solicitation as a class D felony and patronizing a prostitute as a class A misdemeanor. Pavlovich raises three issues, which we revise and restate as:
I. Whether the trial court properly denied Pavlovich’s motion to dismiss the child solicitation charge;
II. Whether the trial court properly admitted certain text messages and emails into evidence and properly permitted their authentication as having been written by Pavlovich; and
III. Whether the trial court properly denied Pavlovich’s motion for a directed verdict with respect to the child solicitation charge. * * *

For the foregoing reasons, we affirm Pavlovich’s convictions for child solicitation as a class D felony and patronizing a prostitute as a class A misdemeanor.

ROBB, J., concurs.
BARNES, J., concurs in part and dissents in part with separate opinion. [which begins, at p. 24] I fully concur with the majority’s resolution of Issues I and II. I must respectfully dissent, however, from the majority’s resolution of Issue III. I cannot agree that Pavlovich completed the act of child solicitation under the facts and circumstances here. * * *

Given the language of the child solicitation statute, I do not believe there is sufficient evidence to support Pavlovich’s conviction for that offense. I vote to reverse his conviction for child solicitation and affirm his conviction for patronizing a prostitute.

NFP civil opinions today (0):

NFP criminal opinions today (1):

Joshua L. Wynn v. State of Indiana (NFP)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on March 28, 2014 12:23 PM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions