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Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 2 opinion(s) today (and 9 NFP memorandum decision(s))

For publication opinions today (2):

In Chuck W. Adams, Charles E. Howard, et al. v. ArvinMeritor, Inc., et al., a 30-page, 2-1 opinion, Judge Robb writes:

Chuck Adams and Charles Howard are inmates at the Indiana Department of Correction (“DOC”) Correctional Industrial Facility (“CIF”) in Madison County. Both Adams and Howard participate in an offender work program at CIF operated by Meritor. In a single complaint, Adams raised two legally independent but factually related claims: 1) a claim for unpaid wages against the Meritor and certain State defendants joined by Chuck Howard and all ArvinMeritor-Meritor-PEN Brake Shop Employees similarly situated, and 2) an individual personal injury claim against the Medical and additional State (“State-CIF”) defendants arising from injuries Adams allegedly sustained on the job. The trial court granted the Meritor and State defendants’ Trial Rule 12(B)(6) motions to dismiss the wage claim, which alleged there is no private right of action to sue for such wages. The trial court granted summary judgment to the Medical and State-CIF defendants on the personal injury claim on the basis of Adams’s failure to exhaust his administrative remedies.

Adams raises several issues on appeal, of which we address three: 1) whether a private right of action is available to enforce Indiana Code Title 11; 2) whether Adams was required to exhaust administrative remedies before bringing a personal injury action; and 3) whether Adams had a right to participate in a hearing on a number of motions.

We conclude Adams did have a private right of action to pursue his wage claim and therefore the trial court erred in granting the Meritor and State defendants’ motions to dismiss as to that claim.

We further conclude Adams had an available administrative remedy as to his personal injury claim but failed to pursue it to completion and therefore the trial court properly granted summary judgment to the Medical and State-CIF defendants.

Finally, we conclude Adams was allowed to participate in the hearing through the submission of documentary evidence and the trial court did not err in denying his motion to appear by video conference or same-day transport. We reverse in part and affirm in part. * * *

Mathias, J., concurs.
May, J., concurs in part, dissents in part. [that begins, on p. 25] I agree with the majority that the trial court properly granted summary judgment to the Medical and State-CIF defendants because Adams had an available administrative remedy as to his personal injury claim but failed to pursue it to completion, and that the trial court did not err in denying Adams’ motion to appear by video conference or same-day transport. But I believe the majority’s own analysis does not permit the result it reaches with regard to whether Adams had a private right of action to pursue his wage claim, and therefore respectfully dissent from that holding. * * *

Despite our statement in Kimrey that there must be an explicit right of action, the majority instead reverses the trial court based on what it concedes is an implicit right of action: “section 11-10-7-4 provides at least an implied right to sue.” (Slip op. at 11.) That result cannot be reconciled with our Kimrey statement, and I cannot accept the majority’s opinion that the Kimrey requirement of an “explicit” right of action can be satisfied by something only “implicit.”

In Michael Fish v. 2444 Acquisitions, LLC, a 12-page opinion, Judge Barnes writes:
Michael Fish appeals the trial court’s grant of a motion for relief from judgment filed by 2444 Acquisitions, LLC (“Acquisitions”). We reverse.

Fish raises several issues, one of which we find dispositive and restate as whether the trial court properly granted Acquisitions’s motion for relief from judgment. * * *

We reverse the trial court’s grant of Acquisitions’s motion for relief from judgment pursuant to Indiana Trial Rule 60(B).

NFP civil decisions today (0):

NFP criminal decisions today (9):

Henry Lee Shell, Jr. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Ivan R. Embry v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Nicholas Cooper v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Brian N. McClain v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Harold Randy Hughes v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Rashaun Curry v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Trenton B. Holcomb v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Scott Bowcock v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Robert J. Maxie v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on December 9, 2015 11:18 AM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions