Monday, June 02, 2014
Ind. Decisions - Upcoming oral arguments this week and next
This week's oral arguments before the Supreme Court (week of 6/2/14):
- No oral arguments currently scheduled.
Thursday, June 12
- 9:00 AM - Indiana Patient's Compensation Fund v. Judy Holcomb (49S05-1404-CC-209) In this case implicating both the Adult Wrongful Death Statute and the Medical Malpractice Act, the Marion Superior Court determined the patient's estate is entitled to recover $54,440 in attorney's fees as damages from the Patient's Compensation Fund, and that the Medical Malpractice Act's 15% limitation on attorney's fees does not limit the amount of compensation the Fund pays. A majority of the Court of Appeals reversed. Indiana Patient's Comp. Fund v. Holcomb, 998 N.E.2d 989 (Ind. Ct. App. 2013), vacated. The Supreme Court has granted a petition to transfer the case and has assumed jurisdiction over the appeal.
ILB: This was a Nov. 27, 2013 2-1 COA opinion. The majority's opinion concluded:
Under the facts the parties have placed before us, including an agreement regarding the Fund’s liability that purported to include no attorney fees as damages, it is impossible to reach a result that is fair to the Estate and to its counsel, yet consistent with the statutory 15% limitation. As the trial court’s award does not accurately reflect either the proper amount of attorney fees or proper allocation of money awarded from the Fund, we must reverse and remand for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.
- 9:45 AM - Barbara Pohl v. Michael Pohl (32S04-1404-DR-245) In connection with the parties’ 2009 marital dissolution, Barbara Pohl agreed to pay monthly spousal maintenance to Michael Pohl beginning in 2013. In 2012, Barbara filed a motion seeking modification of the maintenance obligation. The trial court denied Barbara’s motion, and the Court of Appeals affirmed. Pohl v. Pohl, 999 N.E.2d 442 (Ind. Ct. App. 2013), vacated. The Supreme Court has granted a petition to transfer the case and has assumed jurisdiction over the appeal.
ILB: This was a Nov. 26, 2013 COA opinion re post-dissolution spousal maintenance:
Barbara argues that because appellee-petitioner Michael Pohl’s disability was a basis on which the court has the authority to issue spousal maintenance without the agreement of the parties, the trial court had the authority to modify the spousal agreement if circumstances have changed in such a manner as to render the original agreement unreasonable. Barbara contends that the trial court used the incorrect legal standard when it required her to show fraud, duress, or mistake at the time the spousal maintenance Addendum was signed. We conclude that, in considering the evidence, the trial court could have refused to modify the agreement under a standard requiring a showing of fraud, duress, or mistake or a standard requiring a substantial and continuing change of circumstances. We therefore affirm the decision of the trial court.
- 10:30 AM - Jeffrey Cleary v. State of Indiana (45S03-1404-CR-295) On the entrance ramp to an interstate, Cleary struck the back of a truck, which in turn, struck and killed a man who was changing a tire. Cleary’s blood alcohol content was measured more than .15. A jury found him guilty of Class A misdemeanor operating while intoxicated and other lesser offenses, but the jury deadlocked on felony charges. The Lake Superior Court denied Cleary’s motion for judgment on the verdict, and scheduled a new trial. The jury in the second trial found Cleary guilty on all charges, and Cleary was sentenced to 14 years. A divided Court of Appeals rejected Cleary’s argument that he could not be retried. Cleary v. State, 2 N.E.3d 765 (Ind. Ct. App. 2014), vacated. The Supreme Court has granted a petition to transfer the case and has assumed jurisdiction over the appeal.
ILB: This is a 2-1, Jan. 24, 2014 COA opinion where the majority and dissent concluded, respectively:
Cleary’s retrial did not violate statutory or Indiana constitutional double jeopardy principles. The trial court did not abuse its discretion in admitting the blood test results into evidence, and Cleary has not established that his sentence is inappropriate. We affirm.
The trial court should have entered a judgment of conviction on Cleary’s misdemeanor operating while intoxicated (“OWI”) charges, which would have precluded a retrial on the felony OWI charges. I believe that this result is compelled by principles of fundamental fairness and the principles underlying the Indiana Constitution’s double jeopardy clause. Therefore, I respectfully dissent.
Webcasts of Supreme Court oral arguments are available here.
This week's oral arguments before the Court of Appeals (week of 6/2/14):
Wednesday, June 4
- 2:00 PM - Sapp v. Flagstar Bank (49A02-1311-PL-935) This case comes before us following remand to the trial court where we held in our original opinion that appellee-plaintiff Flagstar Bank’s (FSB) motion for summary judgment on a breach of contract claim was improperly granted with regard to a $125,000 check that had been lost. Sapp v. Flagstar Bank, FSB, 956 N.E.2d 660 (Ind. Ct. App. 2011). Following a bench trial, the appellant-defendant James Sapp now appeals the trial court’s judgment, alleging that FSB’s action in “charging back” his account as to the amount of the check was error under the Uniform Commercial Code and the Deposit Account Disclosure Agreement. In the alternative, Sapp asserts that the trial court improperly found that he suffered no loss when FSB delayed in notifying him of the lost check. Thus, Sapp argues that he is entitled to a setoff of the judgment in the amount of the charge back to his account in light of FSB’s negligence in losing the check. Sapp also contends that the trial court erred in deciding that he is personally liable for shortages in the account because the evidence established that he was only acting in a representative capacity as a shareholder in a corporation. Finally, Sapp challenges the trial court’s decision to award FSB its attorney fees and costs. The Scheduled Panel Members are: Judges Baker, Barnes and Crone. [Where: Court of Appeals Courtroom (WEBCAST)]
- 1:45 PM - Wright v. State (45A05-1310-CR-526) Scott Wright was being tried before a jury for child molesting. Eleven jurors voted to find Wright guilty; the twelfth voted not guilty and would not change his mind. The judge later received a note indicating the juror “will not talk and seems to be falling asleep at times.” The State told the judge it believed that juror was one who was falling asleep during closing arguments. It asked the judge to remove the juror and replace him with an alternate. After hearing testimony by the other jurors, the judge granted the State’s motion. It found the juror was “refus[ing] to participate in the cooperative effort of deliberation.” Wright was then found guilty. The Scheduled Panel Members are: Chief Judge Vaidik, Judges Baker and May [Where: French Lick Springs Hotel, 8670 W. State Road 56, French Lick, IN ]
Next week's oral arguments before the Court of Appeals (week of 6/9/14):
- 10:30 AM - Turner v. Kent, et al (64A05-1310-TR-510) Linda Turner, trustee and beneficiary of the Kazlauski Family Trust, appeals the trial court's grant of summary judgment in favor of beneficiaries Sally Kent and Stanley Kazlauski on the issue of whether a signed writing, executed after the trust agreement, modified the distribution terms of the trust. The separate writing provides for specific gifts of real estate to Stanley and Linda. The trial court determined this to be an invalid attempt to incorporate by reference specific gifts of non-personal property. Linda argues that the writing constitutes a valid amendment to the trust agreement. The Scheduled Panel Members are: Judges Riley, Robb and Bradford [Where: University Place, 1700 Lindberg Road, West Lafayette, IN]
ONLY those Court of Appeals oral arguments presented in the Supreme or Court of Appeals Courtrooms will be accessible via videocast.
The past COA webcasts which have been webcast are accessible here.
NOTE: For a printable version of this list of upcoming oral arguments, click on the date in the next line. Then select "Print" from your browser.
Posted by Marcia Oddi on June 2, 2014 08:07 AM
Posted to Upcoming Oral Arguments