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Monday, January 23, 2017

Ind. Decisions - Court of Appeals issues 2 opinion(s) today (and 3 NFP memorandum decision(s))

For publication opinions today (2):

In GHPE Holdings, LLC, d/b/a Godby Heating Plumbing Electrical v. Jason Huxley , an 18-page opinion, Judge Barnes writes:

GHPE Holdings, LLC, d/b/a Godby Heating Plumbing Electrical (“Godby”) appeals the trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of its former employee, Jason Huxley, in a suit brought under the Wage Payment Act (“WPA”). Godby also appeals the trial court’s judgment amount against Huxley in a counterclaim brought by Godby. We affirm in part, reverse in part, and remand. * * *

We reverse the trial court’s award of $972.71 in base wages to Huxley, as well as the doubling of that amount as liquidated damages. We remand for calculation of the wages to which Huxley is entitled after consideration of mandatory tax withholding only; Huxley is entitled to that net amount plus double the net amount. We affirm the trial court’s damages award on Godby’s counterclaim and its refusal to award treble damages or attorney fees to Godby. We also remand for a calculation of the reasonable appellate attorney fees to which Huxley is entitled with respect to defending the WPA judgment only.

In Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles, and Kent Abernathy, Commissioner of the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles v. Craig Watson, a 14-page opinion, Judge Robb writes:
In 2015, the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (“BMV”) denied the renewal of Craig Watson’s chauffeur’s license. Following an unsuccessful administrative appeal, Watson petitioned for and the trial court granted him special driving privileges. BMV refused to issue Watson’s special driving privileges, and Watson subsequently filed a motion to compel the issuance of a valid chauffeur’s license, which the trial court granted. The Attorney General of Indiana then intervened on behalf of BMV and filed a motion to correct error alleging the trial court lacked personal jurisdiction to consider Watson’s motion to compel. The trial court denied BMV’s motion to correct error. BMV now appeals, raising one issue for our review, whether the trial court erred in denying its motion to correct error. Because Watson effectively petitioned the trial court for judicial review of an agency action without having served the Attorney General of Indiana, as required by the Indiana Administrative Orders and Procedures Act (“AOPA”), we conclude the trial court did not have personal jurisdiction and therefore could not enter an order directing BMV to issue Watson a chauffeur’s license. We therefore reverse the trial court’s denial of BMV’s motion to correct error and vacate its order directing BMV to issue Watson a chauffeur’s license. * * *

Although labeled otherwise, we conclude Watson’s Motion to Issue a Valid Driver’s License Credential effectively asked the trial court to engage in judicial review of an agency action. As such, Watson was required to comply with AOPA and serve the Attorney General, which he failed to do. Absent valid service upon the Attorney General, the trial court lacked personal jurisdiction to order BMV to issue a chauffeur’s license to Watson. Accordingly, we reverse the trial court’s denial of BMV’s motion to correct error and vacate its order directing BMV to issue Watson a chauffeur’s license. Reversed and vacated.

NFP civil decisions today (2):

Keith Krzeminski v. James Carr and Renee Carr (mem. dec.)

In re the Paternity of Stephenie Buck Elizabeth (Buck) Tyler v. Steven Vetor (mem. dec.)

NFP criminal decisions today (1):

L.O.C. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)

Posted by Marcia Oddi on January 23, 2017 12:44 PM
Posted to Ind. App.Ct. Decisions