Recent Decisions

Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Court

Pequot Pharm. Network v. Conn. Hospice

First Impression on Nullum Tempus as Defense to SOL

An arm of the tribe can assert the doctrine of nullum tempus as a defense to plaintiff's failure to timely file a complaint.

CV-GC-2015-104
O'Connell, J.

Practice Areas: Native American Law, Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Contracts, Breach

Mashantucket Pequot Court of Appeals

Deshaies v. Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enter.

Plaintiff Failed To Request Disclosure of Employee's Name

If plaintiff failed to request disclosure of the identity of an employee witness during discovery, defendant may not be required to disclose the name.

MPTC-CV-PI-2013-133
Weathers, J.

Practice Areas: Native American Law, Appellate Law - Civil, Torts, Premises Liability

New London J.D., at New London

Stern v. McEwen

Tavern Permittee Rebutted Presumption of Responsibility

A tavern permittee can rebut the statutory presumption of responsibility for service of alcohol under the dram shop act.

CV10-6006881
Bates, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury, Motor Vehicles

New London J.D., at New London

Lozada v. Perry

Plaintiff Who Allegedly Was Punched Awarded $140,000

A court can award economic damages for medical expenses and non-economic damages, for pain and suffering, to the victim of an intentional assault and battery.

CV14-6022332
Leuba, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Torts, Intentional Torts, Assault, Battery

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

Zhang v. 56 Locust Rd. LLC

Adverse Possession of Horseback Riding Ring Established

If plaintiffs' predecessors' use of the disputed area took place for much longer than 15 years, under a claim of right and the predecessors' use was both open and notorious, a court can grant judgment of adverse possession to plaintiffs.

CV12-6015791
Povodator, J.

Practice Areas: Residential and Commercial Real Estate

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Pierczyk Straska Farm v. Town of Rocky Hill

Farm Objected that Municipal Blight Ordinance Did Not Apply

A municipal blight ordinance can extend to a farm and farming operations.

CV15-5016838
Swienton, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Litchfield J.D., at Litchfield

Zevin v. Murashova

Husband from Belarus Did Not Prove Wife Abandoned Family

A court can find one party at greater fault for the breakdown of the marital relationship, because he was emotionally unavailable and uncommunicative.

FA15-5007602
Gallagher, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Rivera v. Case

Mom's Motion to Relocate with Child to Puerto Rico Denied

A court can find that it is not in the best interests of the minor child for the mother and child to relocate to Puerto Rico, because relocation would effectively eliminate the child's father from the child's life.

FA15-4077375
Ficeto, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Johnson-Jones v. Jones

Wife of 17 Years Awarded Car, $52K Lump Sum and $50 per Week

A court may consider the parties' health, resources and retirement incomes when it awards alimony and distributes property.

FA15-6061180
Suarez, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law

Litchfield J.D., at Litchfield

Godburn v. Connell

Wife Objected To Teaching 8-Year-Old Child to Shoot Firearms

A court can grant a mother's request to restrain a father from keeping firearms or ammunition in his home and from exposing the minor children to firearms or teaching them to shoot.

FA13-4013006
Gallagher, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

D'Eramo v. D'Eramo

Arrest Led To Discharge from Job in Reinsurance Industry

A court can deny a motion to modify alimony and child support, if a party lost his job because of misconduct.

FA11-4035364
Owens, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

State v. Wang

State Requested Involuntary Administration of Psych Drugs

A court can order the involuntary administration of psychiatric medication, if the medication is substantially likely to render a defendant competent to stand trial and will not cause unnecessary risk to defendant's health or interfere with defendant's ability to assist defense counsel.

CR10-0104889
O'Keefe, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Tolland J.D., at Rockville

State v. Walker

Prisoner Who Bit Corrections Officer Sentenced to Five Years

An individual who allegedly bites a corrections officer can be sentenced to 20 years for assault on a public safety officer.

CR12-102332
Fischer, J., Hadden, J. and Ginocchio, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

State v. Carey

Jury Reasonably Found Jilted Woman Had Intent To Kill Lover

Intent to kill can be inferred from conduct such as the type of weapon, the manner of use, the type of wound and events that take place immediately before and after the wound was inflicted.

CR12-0261727
Keegan, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Chiagouris v. Comm'r of Motor Vehicles

Court Overturned Suspension of Driver's License for DUI

If police lack concrete evidence about when the arrestee drove his motor vehicle, they may not possess probable cause to arrest for driving under the influence.

CV15-6030194
Schuman, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Motor Vehicles (Criminal)

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Nat'l Waste Assoc. v. TD Bank

Court Denied Plaintiff's Request for Trial by Jury

If the cause of action is essentially legal, as opposed to essentially equitable, a party can be entitled to a trial by jury.

CV10-6007649
Moukawsher, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Trial

United States District Court

Libertarian Party of Conn. v. Merrill

Libertarians Won Injunction in Professional Circulator Suit

Circulation of ballot access petitions constitutes core political speech, the restriction of which constitutes a severe burden that merits strict scrutiny.

3:14cv1851
Hall, J.

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law

United States District Court

Doe v. New Fairfield Bd. of Educ.

Parents of Alleged Victim Alleged BOE Violated Title IX

Allegations that the alleged victim of sexual abuse continued to encounter the alleged abuser on the school bus and in the school lunchroom, and was subjected to harassment by classmates, can be sufficient to allege that education opportunities were negatively affected and that school officials were deliberately indifferent, in violation of Title IX.

3:13cv1025
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Education Law

United States District Court

Chabad Lubavitch of Litchfield County v. Borough of Litchfield

Reasonable Factfinder Could Find Religious Discrimination

To establish a prima facie nondiscrimination claim under RLUIPA, a plaintiff must produce evidence that defendants, when they denied a religious organization's application to build an addition, acted with intent to discriminate on the basis of religion.

3:09cv1419
Hall, J.

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Civil Rights, Land Use and Planning

United States District Court

Shao v. Beta Pharma Inc.

Bank Records Are Relevant To Claim Defendant Commingled Funds

Ruling on a motion to quash, a court can find that bank records are relevant to allegations that the individual defendant commingled the corporate defendant's funds with his own funds and exercised dominion and control over the corporate defendant.

3:14cv1177
Haight, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Banking and Financial Institutions, Business Entities, Personal Liability

United States District Court

Doe v. Mastoloni

Plaintiffs Sought To Delay Discovery Until After Deposition

A court can deny a request to delay production of pertinent documents until after depositions are taken.

3:14cv718
Haight, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Constitutional Law, Education Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Wheelabrator Bridgeport L.P. v. City of Bridgeport

Court Wrongly Rejected Cash Flow Approach to Valuation

The discounted cash flow approach can be used to assess the fair market value of a waste-to-energy facility that accepts tipping fees and sells electricity.

SC 19288
Zarella, J.

Practice Areas: Taxation, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Supreme Court

McCullough v. Swan Engraving Inc.

Wife Not Required to File Separate Survivor Benefits Claim

Connecticut General Statutes §31-294c may not require that a dependent file a separate claim for survivor's benefits, if the employee filed a timely claim for benefits during his or her lifetime.

SC 19480
Eveleigh, J.

Practice Areas: Social Services Law, Workers’ Compensation, Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations

Connecticut Supreme Court

Caruso v. Zoning Bd. of Appeals of the City of Meriden

Regs Did Not Practically Destroy Property's Value

Unusual hardship can be proved by establishing that a zoning regulation has deprived the property of all reasonable use and value and caused the "practical confiscation" of the property.

SC 19380
Robinson, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Freedom of Information Commission

Talbert-Slagle v. Superintendent of Sch., Hartford Public Sch.

Hartford Public Schools Inadvertently Failed to Comply

Respondents who fail to comprehend the ninth part of a nine-part request for records and inadvertently fail to comply can violate C.G.S. §1-210(a) and 1-212(a).

FIC2015-313
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Muir v. Chief, Police Dep't, City of Hartford

Attorney's Interview Tapes Qualified as Public Records

A municipality that hires an attorney to investigate a discrimination complaint can be required to disclose copies of the attorney's written report and taped interviews.

FIC2015-323
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Dudgeon-Eisenlohr v. Chairman, Inland Wetlands Comm'n

Executive Session Held to Discuss Interview Committee Violated FOIA

Respondents who convene in executive session in order to discuss who would represent their commission on an interview committee can violate Connecticut General Statutes §1-225(a).

FIC2015-279
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Dobson v. Chairman, Dep't of Energy and Envtl. Protection

Whistleblower Alleged DEEP Did Not Provide All Responsive Recs

A public agency is not required to create records and generally is only required to provide copies of responsive records that the agency keeps.

FIC2015-243
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Aronow v. Freedom of Info. Officer, Univ. of Conn. Health Ctr.

UConn Health Center Waited Four Months To Begin Records Search

Respondents who do not begin to search for records in response to a complainant's request for four months can violate C.G.S. §1-210(a) and 1-212(a).

FIC2015-141
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

U.S. v. Bandrich

NY Lawyer Who Resides in Danbury Sentenced as Leader

A lawyer who allegedly files hundreds of fraudulent immigration applications and is convicted can receive a sentencing enhancement for the lawyer's leadership role.

14-3104; 14-4390

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Immigration Law, Legal Profession

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Gonzalez v. Deutsche Bank Nat'l Trust

Claims that Bank Violated Constitutional Rights Barred

Claim preclusion bars the pursuit of claims that were actually made or that might have been made in an earlier suit.

15-756-cv

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Martinez v. City of New Haven

11 Year Old Won $40,814 for School Auditorium Accident

A court can award economic damages for medical expenses and noneconomic damages, for pain and suffering, to a school student who was injured in a school auditorium.

CV13-6042389
Agati, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Kusmit v. Mahoney

Law Firm Won Motion to Strike Legal-Malpractice Claims

A lawyer's apportionment complaint against another lawyer and law firm can be stricken, because plaintiffs who alleged legal malpractice did not allege damage to property, personal injury or wrongful death.

CV15-6054222
Fischer, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Malpractice, Torts, Personal Injury, Wrongful Death

Middlesex J.D., at Middletown

Narden v. Town of Westbrook Zoning Bd. of Appeals

Applicants Did Not Request the Minimum Variances Possible

If applicants prove that an unusual hardship exists, they are not required to request the absolute minimum variances possible.

CV14-6012589
Quinn, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Hinds v. Gullap

Wife of 10 Years Won Green Card And 2003 Ford Windstar

A court can find that a husband left a marital residence after his wife allegedly threw water at him and threatened to have him arrested.

FA15-6059112
Ficeto, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law

Waterbury J.D., at Waterbury

State v. Walton

Defense Claimed Photo Array Was Unnecessarily Suggestive

A court can suppress an identification based on a photo array, if police procedures are unnecessarily suggestive.

CR13-0414326
Crawford, J.

Practice Areas: Evidence, Admissibility, Criminal Law, Constitutional Law

Waterbury J.D., at Waterbury

Quality Cardiovascular Care v. Malinics

Myers Harrison Expert Witness Is Qualified to Testify

A court can admit the testimony of a valuation expert who formulated an opinion based on financial statements, tax returns and monthly charge analysis reports.

CV10-6004787
Brazzel-Massaro, J.

Practice Areas: Evidence, Admissibility, Expert Witnesses

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Town of Middlebury v. Conn. Siting Council

Siting Council Adequately Considered Neighborhood Concerns

If opponents of a power plant expansion submit evidence about air quality, water supply and the public's safety, and the agency's decision indicates that the agency extensively considered those topics, opponents may not be able to prove that the agency failed to adequately consider "neighborhood concerns," as required by Connecticut General Statutes §16-50p(c)(1).

CV15-6029869
Schuman, J.

Practice Areas: Environmental Law, Energy and Natural Resources

Tolland J.D., at Rockville

Betancourt v. Warden

Defense Did Not Know About State's Chief Witness' Agreement

If the state's chief witness reaches agreement with the state that will confer a benefit on the witness for his testimony, and the defense is unaware of the agreement, that can provide grounds to grant a petition for a writ of habeas corpus.

CV12-4004762
Oliver, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Curran v. Curran

Contract Provided that Third Party Would Value Dealership

Absent bad faith, fraud or gross misconduct, if parties stipulate that a third party will decide the value of a minority stakeholder's shares, they may not appeal and claim that the third-party appraiser did not properly apply a minority discount.

CV12-6039298
Sheridan, J.

Practice Areas: Contracts, Business Entities, Valuation, Dissolution

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Horrocks v. Keepers Inc.

1st Impression on Alleged Unconscionability of Arb Clause

A court can enforce an arbitration clause that is not procedurally or substantively unconscionable and that does not violate public policy.

CV15-6054684
Wilson, J.

Practice Areas: Alternative Dispute Resolution, Arbitration (ADR), Labor and Employment, Wages and Hours

United States District Court

Polite v. Winn Residential

Tenant Refused Landlord's Reasonable Accommodation

A tenant who allegedly refuses to accept a reasonable accommodation may not raise a plausible inference that defendant landlord refused to accommodate her disability.

3:14cv1921
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Landlord/Tenant Law, Civil Rights, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

United States District Court

Von Britton v. State

Former Inmate Seeks $10 Million for Alleged Failure to Diagnose

A former inmate's broad and conclusory statement that a prison warden managed medical care decisions can be insufficient to state a claim for supervisory liability.

3:14cv133
Shea, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Civil Procedure, Jurisdiction and Service of Process, Health Law

Connecticut Appellate Court

Kenosia Commons v. DaCosta

Tenant Purchased Shares of Stock in Mobile Manufactured Home Park

An individual who purchases shares of stock in a mobile manufactured home park may not qualify as an "owner" of the park, for purposes of a summary-process action.

AC 37396
Lavine, J.

Practice Areas: Landlord/Tenant Law, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Appellate Court

Tirreno v. The Hartford

Insurer Moved to Enforce Parties' Settlement Agreement

A trial court possesses the power to enforce a settlement agreement, provided that the terms are clear and unambiguous.

AC 36879
Alvord, J.

Practice Areas: Contracts, Breach, Torts, Personal Injury, Motor Vehicles

Connecticut Appellate Court

Town of Trumbull v. Palmer

Affidavit Was Not Filed in Conjunction with Motion to Open

When a defendant files a motion to open a judgment of dismissal that entered because her attorney did not attend a dormancy status conference, defendant's attorney may not be required to file an affidavit.

AC 36718
Bishop, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Motion Practice, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Berrios

Mother's Jury Tampering Did Not Prevent a Fair Trial

Allegations that defendant's mother tampered with the jury by approaching a juror outside the courthouse and speaking to that juror about the evidence can be insufficient to prove that the jury was unable to decide the case fairly and impartially.

SC 19494
Robinson, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Mulcahy

Candidate Used Club Funds for Letter that Benefitted Campaign

A candidate who uses a private entity's funds to write a letter that benefits his campaign for re-election to public office and who does not include an attribution that explains who paid for and approved the letter can violate Connecticut General Statutes §9-613 and 9-621(a).

2015-093
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Minor

Incumbent's Post on Facebook Did Not Violate C.G.S. §9-610(d)

A post on Facebook that does not cost anything to print or mail may not violate Connecticut General Statutes §9-610(d), which prevents incumbent candidates from use of public funds "to mail or print flyers or other promotional materials" that promote an incumbent within three months of an election.

2015-114
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Mazurek

Two Candidate Committees Engaged in Joint Expenditures

Separate candidate committees can engage in joint campaign expenditures, provided that each committee pays a pro rata share.

2014-099
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Coviello

Campaign Worker Did Not Properly Report Cost of Sign

A campaign worker who allegedly does not report a campaign expenditure can violate Connecticut General Statutes §9-608.

2014-073
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Bernaschina

Town Attorney Asked BOE Candidate Not To Dumpster Dive

A town attorney who requests that a candidate from a different political party cease and desist from combing through a garbage dumpster does not violate prohibitions in Connecticut General Statutes §9-610(d)(1) on incumbents' use of public funds.

2015-126
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Brayboy v. O'Dwyer

BOE Security Guard Did Not Prove Adverse Employment Action

A failure to investigate may constitute an adverse employment action only if the failure to investigate is retaliation for a separate, protected act.

15-1416

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Discrimination, Race Discrimination

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Asante-Addae v. Sodexo Inc.

General Manager's Predecessor Had 20 Years More Seniority

Absent evidence that plaintiff and a predecessor were similarly situated in material respects, a plaintiff may not be able to prevail on a disparate pay claim.

15-1377

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Race Discrimination

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Roque

15 Years for Gun Possession Not Cruel and Unusual Punishment

A sentence of 15 years in prison for unlawful possession of a firearm may not violate the Eighth Amendment's ban on cruel and unusual punishment, if defendant previously was convicted on charges of first-degree escape, first-degree assault and first-degree robbery.

14-3768

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Constantinou

Defendant Objected to Use of Side Bars During Voir Dire

Use of side bars during voir dire, which is a common practice in Connecticut district court, may not qualify as clear or obvious error.

14-4725

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law, White Collar Crime, Fraud (White Collar)

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Watley v. Katz

Court Acted Prematurely When it Dismissed Complaint

An individual can be entitled to notice before adverse judicial action is taken, and failure to provide an opportunity to be heard can provide grounds for reversal.

14-3862

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Family Law, Custody and Child Support

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Yale-New Haven Hosp. v. Nicholls

Second Wife's Request for Re-Hearing on Benefits Denied

The Second Circuit can deny a request for a re-hearing on the validity of domestic relations orders that were entered after the plan participant passed away.

13-4725-cv

Practice Areas: Appellate Law - Civil, Family Law, Labor and Employment, Employee Benefits, Pensions and Other Retirement Benefits

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Morillo v. Georges

Apparent 1st Impression on Rights of Child in Utero

A child in utero lacks assertible legal rights until birth and cannot maintain a legal claim for loss of parental consortium.

CV15-6058761
Peck, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Liability, Immunity, Personal Injury, Education Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Dyous

Right To Appeal Equal-Protection Claims Was Granted Improvidently

The Connecticut Supreme Court can dismiss the defendant's claims that his right to equal protection was violated, if certification was granted improvidently.

SC 19410
Per Curiam

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Appellate Law - Criminal

Freedom of Information Commission

Simko-Bednarski v. Executive Dir., Human Resources, Stamford Pub. Sch.

Stamford Advocate Won Motion To Disclose Letter of Suspension

Disclosure of a letter of suspension of a public high school teacher may not violate the teacher's personal privacy. On March 2, 2015, complainants Evan Simko-Bednarski and the Stamford Advocate requested a copy of the letter of suspension that the Stamford Public Schools sent to a high school teacher, Lee Teich.

FIC 2015-271
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Johnson v. Proto

Additur to Damages for Pain and Suffering Awarded

When a jury awards plaintiff a portion of plaintiff's medical expenses and does not award damages for pain and suffering, a court can award an additur.

CV13-6037713
Wilson, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Motor Vehicles, Personal Injury, Damages

Ansonia-Milford J.D., at Derby

Hanley v. Smith

No Proof Shoulder Pain and Headaches Were Causally Related

A court can credit testimony that medical treatment for plaintiff's right shoulder and headaches was not causally related to a 2007 motor-vehicle accident.

CV09-5010167
Tyma, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Motor Vehicles, Personal Injury, Damages

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Eliason v. City of Hartford

Lawyer Who Tripped and Fell Awarded $29,595

A court can award economic damages for medical expenses and non-economic damages, for pain and suffering, to an individual who trips and falls on an uneven sidewalk.

CV14-6054507
Noble, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Damages, Personal Injury

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Griffin v. Allegre Banquets

Customer Alleged that Mashed Potatoes Contained Steel Nail

A product seller is not liable, if a third party alters or modifies his product.

CV13-6042021
Wilson, J.

Practice Areas: Products Liability

Freedom of Information Commission

Kaminski v. Comm'r, Dep't of Public Correction

Prisoner Claimed DOC Should Have Kept Tape More Than 30 Days

A state agency may not be required to produce a copy of a tape that the agency destroyed after 30 days.

FIC 2015-051
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Stvan v. Stvan

Father Won Emergency Ex Parte Motion for Custody

A party can apply to the court for an emergency ex parte order of custody, if an immediate and present risk of physical danger or psychological harm exists, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §46b-56(f).

FA14-4045766
Adelman, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Windham J.D.

Pehowdy v. Pehowdy

Wife Won Sole Custody and Child Support of $107 per Week

If a parent does not believe he should be required to contribute financially to the support of his children, a court can order that the parent pay child support pursuant to a wage withholding order.

FA15-5006029
Graziani, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Lazova v. Peitchev

Yale Dr. to Pay Child Support of $477/Week and Attorney Fees

A court can award attorney fees, if failure to award attorney fees would undermine other court orders.

FA05-4010255
Shluger, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Litchfield J.D., at Litchfield

Begin v. Begin

Wife Who Married at 18 Awarded Marital Residence and $232/Week

A court may consider the parties' ages, health and incomes when it awards marital property.

FA14-4014384
Gallagher, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Minninger v. Comm'r of Motor Vehicles

Driver Claimed Cop Did Not Allow Him to Talk to Criminal Attorney

A driver who has been arrested and allowed to speak to his civil attorney may not be entitled to an additional five minutes to also consult his criminal attorney.

CV15-6029931
Schuman, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States District Court

Cotto v. City of Middletown

Court Ordered $32.5k Remittitur of $61,000 Strip Search Award

A police officer who conducts a public strip search absent exigent circumstances can violate the Fourth Amendment, even if reasonable suspicion exists.

3:10cv560
Underhill, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law

United States District Court

Known Litigation Holdings v. Navigators Ins. Co.

Plaintiff Not Required to Disclose Privileged Doc

A report that is written in preparation for litigation can be privileged. Defendants filed a motion to compel production of documents.

3:12cv269
Arterton, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery

Connecticut Supreme Court

Dairyland Ins. Co. v. Mitchell

Motor-Vehicle Policy Exclusion Found Void and Unenforceable

Connecticut General Statutes §38a-335(d) requires that exclusions be set forth separately in an endorsement to the insurance policy that specifically names the individual excluded from coverage.

SC 19482
Rogers, C.J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms

Connecticut Supreme Court

Isabella v. Dep't of Children and Families

Alleged Victim of Abuse Lacked Standing To Appeal DCF's Decision

Even if a newspaper article discussed the purported victim's age and indicated that she was a relative of the alleged abuser, the purported victim's right to privacy may not give rise to a specific, personal and legally protected interest in a substantiation decision by the Department of Children and Families.

SC 19451
Eveleigh, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Civil Procedure, Standing

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Davalloo

Wife Not Entitled to Marital Privilege After Murder Attempt

For a marital communication to be entitled to the marital privilege under Connecticut General Statutes §54-84b, it must be: (1) made to a spouse during a marriage; (2) confidential; and (3) induced by the affection, confidence, loyalty and integrity of the marital relationship.

SC 19416
Rogers, C.J.

Practice Areas: Evidence, Witnesses, Privileges, Criminal Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Victor

Sentence of 30 Years for Sex Assault of Minor Affirmed

Connecticut General Statutes §53a-70(b)(3) does not require that individuals convicted of first-degree sexual assault be sentenced to a period of imprisonment plus a period of special parole.

SC 19459
Palmer, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Jason

Special Parole Was Not a Required Element of Sentence

A trial court wrongly concluded it was required to re-sentence a defendant to a period in prison plus a period of special parole, to comply with Connecticut General Statutes §53a-70(b)(3).

SC 19446
Palmer, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Colonial Health v. Comm'r, Dep't of Public Health

Department of Public Health Ordered to Search Diligently

A public agency that does not conduct a diligent search in response to a Freedom of Information Act request can violate C.G.S. §1-210(a) and 1-212(a).

FIC 2015-242
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Brown v. Comptroller, State of Conn.

Agency Was Not Required To Disclose Whistleblower Docs

A public agency may not be required to disclose certain documents that pertain to a whistleblower complaint and investigation, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §1-210(b)(13).

FIC 2015-055
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Nat'l Labor Relations Bd. v. Am. Med. Response of Conn.

American Medical Response Wrongly Discharged Union Activist

A company that allegedly discharges an employee because of his union-related activities can violate §8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act.

14-4998 and 14-4648

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Unfair Practices

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Dotel v. Walmart

Worker Alleged Manager Said 'Women [Are] Good for Nothing'

A single, isolated remark that "women [are] good for nothing" may be insufficient to state a claim for hostile-work environment.

15-76

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Discrimination, Sex Discrimination, Torts, Emotional Distress

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Lusanga v. Lynch

Citizen of Congo Did Not Prove Likelihood of Torture

To prevail on a claim under the Convention Against Torture, a petitioner may be required to prove it is more likely than not that he would be tortured if he returned to his country.

12-3776

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Milligan

90 Months for Convicted Felon's Possession of Firearm Affirmed

A sentence may not be reasonable substantively if shockingly high, shockingly low or otherwise unsupportable as a matter of law.

15-505-cr

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Steve v. Arone

Single Interference with Mail Insufficient to State a Claim

Allegations that a prison mail room interfered with a prisoner's mail on one occasion may be insufficient to state a civil-rights claim under 42 United States Code §1983.

15-309

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law

Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Court

Waterman v. Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enter.

Plaintiff Did Not Prove Right Knee Surgery Was Related to Fall

A court can find that a doctor's belief that a patient could benefit from surgery did not rise to the level of reasonable probability.

MPTC-CV-PI-2013-191
Londregan, J.

Practice Areas: Native American Law, Torts, Personal Injury, Damages

Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Court

Ruffo v. Craft Worldwide Holdings

Plaintiff Who Fell on Floor Light Fixture Awarded $289,189

A court can award economic damages for medical expenses and loss of wages and non-economic damages for pain and suffering to an individual who trips and falls.

MPTC-CV-PI-2013-107
O'Connell, J.

Practice Areas: Native American Law, Torts, Personal Injury, Damages

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Royster v. Black Bear Hartford

Estate of Young Football Player Awarded $2 Million

A court can award economic and non-economic damages to the estate of an individual who passed away as a result of a motor-vehicle accident.

CV12-6027858
Wahla, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury, Wrongful Death, Motor Vehicles

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Leslie v. Hartford Bd. of Educ.

Board of Ed Entitled to Immunity for Haunted House Fundraiser

A school-sponsored fundraiser activity held to support other school-sponsored activities does not constitute "proprietary," as opposed to governmental conduct, even if the fundraiser makes a profit.

CV14-6047423
Elgo, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Liability, Immunity, Personal Injury, Education Law

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Leach v. Leach

Siblings Who Partitioned Property Awarded $3,701 Each

Individuals who inherit property and are unable to persuade another party to sell can file a partition action and request a court-ordered sale.

CV11-6020794
Robaina, J.

Practice Areas: Residential and Commercial Real Estate, Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Shehu v. Statewide Grievance Committee

SGC Decision To Issue Reprimand Was Not Unduly Harsh

An attorney who allegedly offers to accept money not to file a grievance complaint can violate Rule 8.4(4) of the Rules of Professional Conduct.

CV14-6052929
Robaina, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession

Ansonia/Milford J.D., at Milford

Simko v. Zoning Bd. of Appeals of the City of Milford

Court Reversed ZBA's Decision To Grant Variance

A court can find that a need for repairs and the desire for a larger living space are insufficient hardships to merit the grant of a variance and to expand a legally nonconforming building.

CV15-6017940
Hiller, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Hartford J.D., at Hartford (Housing Session)

Lee v. Frederick

Tenants Did Not Prove Premises Were Not Habitable

Although a refrigerator did not work during part of one month during the tenancy, a court found that the landlord met his obligation to make the premises habitable when he obtained a replacement refrigerator and arranged for maintenance.

HDSP-180253
Rubinow, J.

Practice Areas: Landlord/Tenant Law, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Barbee v. Sysco Conn.

'Hamburglary' Provided Grounds to Discharge Sysco Worker

A court can find that an employer discharged a worker because of employee theft, as opposed to in retaliation, because the worker filed a workers' compensation claim.

CV12-6027925
Moukawsher, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Social Services Law, Workers’ Compensation

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Bauer v. Bauer

Dr.'s Wife Awarded Marital Residence and $170,000 Per Year

A court can award the marital residence to the party who worked as a homemaker and order that party to sign a mortgage and note to the primary breadwinner.

FA14-4075285
Suarez, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

State v. Satti

10 Years for Bookkeeper Who Allegedly Stole $415,000 Affirmed

A court can sentence a bookkeeper who allegedly stole approximately $415,000 to 10 years in prison, execution suspended after 42 months.

CR14-166545
Fischer, J., Hadden, J. and Ginocchio, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Litchfield J.D., at Litchfield

State v. Patel

Defendant Claimed Trooper Should Have Known He Hired an Attorney

The Sixth Amendment right to counsel is offense specific and it does not extend to uncharged offenses.

CR13-143597
Danaher, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Rodriguez v. Energy Brands

Agreement to Settle Suit for $18,000 Was Enforceable

A court can enforce a settlement agreement, if a party provided his attorney actual authority to settle.

CV14-6041669
Rush, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Contracts, Breach

United States District Court

In Re: Grand Jury Investigation B-15-1

Petition to Disclose Docs Discovered by Grand Jury Denied

The government is not automatically entitled to the disclosure of documents that a grand jury discovers when conducting an investigation.

16mc4
Underhill, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States District Court

Sherman v. Platosh

260-Pound Plaintiff Alleged He Could Not Fit in Police Cruiser

A single instance of unconstitutional conduct may be insufficient to establish a municipal custom or policy.

3:15cv352
Shea, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law

United States District Court

Strauch v. Computer Sciences Corp.

Defendant in FLSA Collective Action Objected to Deposition Cap

A court can cap the number of depositions for second- and third-tier plaintiffs in a massive FLSA collective action at 60.

3:14cv956
Arterton, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Labor and Employment, Wages and Hours

United States District Court

Hubert v. Dep't of Correction

Local Rule Did Not Prevent Attorney from Filing Motions

A local rule that provides that the clerk of the court shall not accept for filing any paper from an attorney or pro se litigant against whom a final order of monetary sanctions has been imposed, until the sanctions have been paid in full, may not apply to an attorney who hires another attorney to represent him in a court action.

3:14cv476
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Parties

United States District Court

Hewett v. Triple Point Tech.

Judge Underhill Is Not Required To Recuse Himself

A federal judge is required to "disqualify himself in any proceeding in which his impartiality might reasonably be questioned," pursuant to 28 United States Code §455(a).

3:13cv1382
Underhill, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure

United States District Court

Corsair Special Situations Fund v. Engineered Framing Sys.

State Marshal Won Fees of $346,275 on $2.3M Judgment

A state marshal who levies an execution can charge a fee of 15 percent.

3:11cv1980
Hall, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Dowling v. Schupp

Court Approved $550 per Hour for Attorney Richard P. Weinstein

A court can award punitive damages in the form of attorney fees to a plaintiff who proves tortious interference with contractual rights and violation of the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act.

CV11-6027560
Shortall, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Torts, Business Torts

Connecticut Appellate Court

Pramuka v. Town of Cromwell

Genuine Issue Whether Highway Defect Statute Covered Walkway

To prevail on a claim brought pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §13a-149 of the municipal highway-defect statute, a plaintiff must prove: (1) the plaintiff sustained an injury as a result of a defective road or bridge; and (2) the defendant is responsible for maintenance and repairs.

AC 36688
Mullins, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury

Connecticut Appellate Court

Sowell v. Dicara

Attorney Communication Violated Rule of Professional Conduct 4.2

An individual who directly contacts members of a board of directors without permission from their attorney can violate Rule 4.2 of the Rules of Professional Conduct—even if the agency has dissolved and is in the process of winding down.

AC 36921
Lavine, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing

Connecticut Appellate Court

Gonzales v. Langdon

Court Wrongly Denied Request to Consider Amended Dr.'s Opinion

A medical-malpractice plaintiff who files a legally insufficient written opinion need not file an entirely new complaint, if an amendment can cure a defect soon after the original complaint is filed.

AC 37090
Prescott, J.

Practice Areas: Health Law, Medical Malpractice

Connecticut Appellate Court

Berger v. Finkel

Prior Ruling on Actual Earnings Confused Trial Court

When a court that issues a ruling on modification is confused about whether the trial court issued its decision based on actual earnings or earning capacity, the Appellate Court can reverse and remand.

AC 36551
Mullins, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Connecticut Appellate Court

Farren v. Farren

Involuntary Psych Commitment Did Not Excuse Absence from Trial

Absent adequate evidence from a doctor, allegations that defendant could not make it to court because he was involuntarily committed to a psychiatric hospital may not be sufficient to delay a trial.

AC 37079 and AC 37080
Beach, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Trial, Torts, Intentional Torts, Assault

Citizen's Ethics Advisory Board

Advisory Opinion 2015-7

Former Social Worker Can Work at United Services Inc.

A limited exception exists to the one-year restriction on post-state employment work in Connecticut General Statutes §1-84b(b), if the post-state employment only involves technical work.

Advisory Opinion 2015-7
Chiusano, J.

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

City of Stamford and UE Local 222 CILU, Local 82

Discharge of Probationary Worker Is Subject to Arbitration

An employer's decision to discharge a worker who is on probation can be arbitrated, if the employer does not comply with a condition in the collective bargaining contract that requires the employer to observe and to consider the employee's work and to deem the employee "unfit for such appointment."

2015-A-0470
Brown and Blum – Ryan dissented

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

City of New Haven and New Haven Police Union

Cop Attempted To Add Spouse To Plan 358 Days After Marriage

A municipality may not be required to comply with an employee's request to add his new spouse to his group health plan, if the employee does not immediately inform the municipality about the change in marital status or make a request during open enrollment.

2015-A-0227
Hampton, Ferrucci and Muschell

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Labor and Employment, Employee Benefits, Health Benefits, Labor Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Cannon

Defendant Denied He Had Constructive Possession of Gun

A defendant's attempted flight and false statements can provide evidence of consciousness of guilt and support an inference of possession.

14-2618-cr

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Murphy v. City of Stamford

Taxpayer Lacked Valid Conspiracy Claim Against Stamford Defendants

Under the intracorporate conspiracy doctrine, officers, agents and employees of a single corporate entity are legally incapable of conspiring together.

14-2485

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law, Taxation

Litchfield J.D., at Litchfield

Penney v. Holley

Grandmother Victim of Dog Bite Awarded $2,003

A court can award economic damages for medical expenses and non-economic damages, for pain and suffering, to the victim of a dog bite.

CV14-6010281
Shah, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

Maxfield v. Maxfield

Man Upset by STD Twitter Comments Did Not Prove Damages

A plaintiff who fails to establish actual harm to his reputation cannot prevail on a claim for libel per se.

CV14-5014267
Lee, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Intentional Torts, Defamation

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Long Brook Station v. Town of Stratford Planning and Zoning Comm'n; Town of Stratford v. Town of Stratford Planning and Zoning Comm'n

Affordable Housing Approved without Two P&Z Conditions

When ruling on an affordable housing application, a court can consider whether the risk of harm to the public interest in health, safety and welfare is greater than the need for public housing.

CV15-6049443 and CV15-6049299
Radcliffe, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Waterbury J.D., at Waterbury

City of Waterbury v. Hospitality Franchise Assoc.

City Proved Insurers Breached Duty to Defend

When defendants breach their duty to defend, a court can award attorney fees both to defend the underlying action and to bring the current action to enforce the duty to defend.

CV14-6025014
Roraback, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms, Torts, Personal Injury

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Samb v. Richardson

Mom's Request To Travel Abroad with Child Denied

A court can find it is not in the best interests of the minor child to travel outside the United States with the mother, because credible evidence exists that the mother would refuse to return the child to the United States.

FA14-4061039
Goodrow, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Smith v. Town of Redding

Evidence of Remedial Measure was not Admissible

Evidence that defendant built a fence can be excluded as evidence of a subsequent remedial measure that is not admissible under Connecticut Code of Evidence §4-7.

CV12-6024402
Kamp, J.

Practice Areas: Evidence, Admissibility, Torts, Personal Injury

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Roscoe v. Elim Park Baptist Home

Executor Alleged Nursing Facility Violated CUTPA

Allegations that defendant nursing facility engaged in fraudulent misrepresentation and civil theft, if proved, can be sufficient to allege that defendant violated the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act.

CV14-6049541
Frechette, J.

Practice Areas: Elder Law, Trusts and Estates, Health Law

New London J.D., at New London

State v. Rios

20 Years for First-Degree Manslaughter of Infant Affirmed

An individual who pleads guilty to first-degree manslaughter can be sentenced to 20 years in prison.

CR13-121336
Fischer, J., Hadden, J., and Ginocchio, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Drayson v. Chubb Nat'l Ins.

Defendant Won 30-Day Extension to Respond to Offer

A court can grant a defendant a 30-day extension to respond to a plaintiff's offer of compromise.

CV15-6054474
Alander, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Motion Practice, Insurance Law, Torts, Personal Injury

New London J.D., at New London

Property Owners Consulting v. Cafiero

Property Owners Consulting v. Cafiero

A court can award damages to a company that proves a former employee set up a competing company and used plaintiff's contact information, a similar solicitation letter and plaintiff's business equipment to compete directly, in violation of a contract not to compete.

CV13-6019015
Devine, J.

Practice Areas: Business Entities, Labor and Employment, Employment Contracts

New London J.D., at New London

Patterson v. Geo-Graphics Spegram

Plaintiff Maintained Individual Defendant Had Complete Control

To prevail on an instrumentality claim, a plaintiff must prove: (1) complete domination of finances, policy and business practice, so that the corporate entity lacked a separate mind, will or existence; (2) defendant used the control to commit fraud or wrong; and (3) defendant's complete domination and breach of duty proximately caused injury or loss.

CV15-6023954
Bates, J.

Practice Areas: Business Entities, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

United States District Court

Dymskaya v. Orem's Diner of Wilton

Worker Who Proved Hostile-Work Environment Won $113,048 in Fees

A court can reduce attorney fees 15 percent for partial success and also because lead counsel performed work that could have been performed by an associate attorney.

3:12cv388
Meyer, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Labor and Employment, Discrimination, Sexual Harassment

United States District Court

Stockheimer v. Hanover Ins.

Controlled Substances Exclusion Applied to $3.5 Million Award

A court can enforce a policy exclusion that excludes damages for bodily injury that results from the use of "controlled substances."

3:15cv213
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms, Health Law, Medical Malpractice

United States District Court

Allstate v. Stearns

Insurer Required to Defend Insured Who Engaged in Fistfight

Injuries caused by action taken in self-defense can qualify as accidents and occurrences under an insurance policy.

3:14cv1984
Underhill, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms, Torts, Intentional Torts, Assault

United States District Court

Lapaglia v. Transamerica Cas. Ins.

Insurance Claim Did Not Meet $75,000 Jurisdictional Threshold

Federal diversity jurisdiction requires that the amount in controversy be $75,000 or more.

3:15cv616
Meyer, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Jurisdiction and Service of Process, Insurance Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Denunzio v. Denunzio

Probate Court Properly Appointed Dad as Conservator

Following the enactment of Public Act 07-116, probate courts may no longer consider the amorphous "best interests" of the conservatee standard when making conservatorship decisions.

SC 19388
McDonald, J.

Practice Areas: Trusts and Estates

Connecticut Supreme Court

Southport Congregational Church-United Church of Christ v. Hadley

Seller Signed Contract and Passed Away before Closing

When a seller signs a contract and passes away, before the closing takes place, courts can apply the doctrine of equitable conversion to find that equitable title passed to the buyer when the seller signed the sales contract.

SC 19398
Robinson, J.

Practice Areas: Residential and Commercial Real Estate, Trusts and Estates

Connecticut Supreme Court

In Re: Gabriella

Jamaican Mother of Seven Did Not Adequately Rehabilitate

A court can terminate the parental rights of a biological parent who allegedly fails to rehabilitate sufficiently to assume a responsible position in her minor child's life.

SC 19435
Espinosa, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Connecticut Supreme Court

Wheeler v. Beachcroft

Res Judicata Does Not Bar Prescriptive Easement Claims

Res judicata bars relitigation of claims actually made and claims that might have been made in a prior litigation, because a party should not be allowed to relitigate a matter it already had an opportunity to litigate.

SC 19355, 19356 and 19357
Robinson, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Statewide Grievance Committee

Zuckerman v. Snaider

Former New Haven Attorney Allegedly Converted $269,694

An attorney who allegedly keeps money that belongs to his client and converts that money for his own personal use engages in conduct prejudicial to the administration of justice, in violation of Rule 8.4(4).

15-0282
Goulden, Esq, Sansone, Esq. and Gill

Practice Areas: Legal Profession

Statewide Grievance Committee

Serrano v. Couloute; Azzarito v. Couloute; Hendreicks v. Couloute

Stamford Attorney Is Subject of Six Presentments

An attorney can reach agreement with disciplinary counsel to consolidate various disciplinary matters for decision by the Connecticut Superior Court.

15-0221; 15-0196 and 15-0204
O'Sullivan, Esq, Castillo and Summa, Esq.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession

Statewide Grievance Committee

Danbury J.D. Grievance Panel v. Miller

Attorney Who Allegedly Lied to Court Tribunal Reprimanded

An attorney who knowingly makes "a false statement of fact" to a court tribunal and who does not correct the statement when provided the opportunity violates Rule 3.3(a)(1) of the Rules of Professional Conduct.

14-0803
Goulden, Esq, Sansone, Esq. and Gill

Practice Areas: Legal Profession

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Moore v. Dahlmeyer

Driver Admitted She Did Not Yield the Right-of-Way

A court can reverse a verdict in favor of defendant, if defendant admitted that she did not yield the right-of-way.

CV13-6037004
Wilson, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Motor Vehicles, Personal Injury

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Deleon v. Nolan

Plaintiff Did Not Prove Nightclub Worker Choked and Threw Him

To prevail on a claim for negligence, a plaintiff is required to prove, by a preponderance of the evidence, that defendant's conduct proximately caused plaintiff's injuries.

CV13-6047130
Sheridan, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Intentional Torts, Assault, Premises Liability, Invitees

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Fava v. Car Place

Driver Allegedly Knew Motor Vehicle Was Missing Seatbelt

If plaintiff knowingly uses a motor vehicle in a defective condition that may reduce the amount of recovery, as opposed to barring recovery completely.

CV13-6019984
Wiese, J.

Practice Areas: Products Liability

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Raffone v. Overton

Defendants to Pay $70 per Week for Alleged Conversion

At a hearing in damages, a court can order that a defendant who allegedly converted plaintiff's property pay $35 per week on the court judgment.

CV15-5039758
Noble, J.

Practice Areas: Personal Property, Torts, Emotional Distress

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Medina v. Koos

Minor Tenants Alleged that Landlord Was Reckless

Allegations that a landlord knew that an apartment contained a high level of lead and that defendant consciously disregard the risk of harm and leased the apartment to a family with children can be sufficient to allege recklessness.

CV14-6055131
Huddleston, J.

Harford J.D., at Hartford

Ford v. Faith Asset Management

Manager Did Not Qualify for Coverage under FMLA

The Family and Medical Leave Act does not cover medical leave for short-term conditions for which treatment and recovery are brief.

CV15-6058178
Huddleston, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Employee Benefits, Family and Medical Leave Act

Harford J.D., at Manchester, G.A. 12

State v. Bartlett

Defendant Who Paid Restitution Won Early Termination of AR

When a defendant pays restitution to the alleged victim, engages in counseling and successfully completes all conditions of accelerated rehabilitation, the court can terminate accelerated rehabilitation early and dismiss all charges.

CR14-0250065
Baldini, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States District Court

Simonsen v. Bremby

Quadriplegic with $1 M Trust Likely to Qualify for Medicaid

If a trust contains a spendthrift clause, the beneficiary lacks a right to access the trust principal, and the trust does not count as an available resource for Medicaid eligibility purposes.

3:15cv1399
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Social Services Law, Trusts and Estates

United States District Court

Roman v. Colvin

Government Objected To Attorney Fees for Negotiating Legal Fees

Ruling on a request for reasonable attorney fees under the Equal Access to Justice Act, a court can exercise its discretion not to award attorney fees for time spent to negotiate attorney fees and time spent to redact time sheet entries.

3:15cv917
Merriam, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Social Services Law, Social Security Compensation

Connecticut Appellate Court

Kumah v. Brown

Greenwich Entitled To Immunity in Fire Truck Accident

A jury reasonably can find that a municipality exercised its discretion when it positioned a fire truck across the middle and right travel lanes of a highway.

AC 36716
Beach, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Liability, Immunity, Motor Vehicles, Transportation

Connecticut Appellate Court

Diaz v. Manchester Mem'l Hosp.

Plaintiff Failed To Prove Actual or Constructive Notice

A plaintiff who alleges that she slipped and fell on an icy sidewalk can be required to prove that the owner had actual or constructive notice.

AC 37204
DiPentima, C.J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Premises Liability, Invitees

Connecticut Appellate Court

Nationwide Mut. Ins. Co. v. Pasiak

Exclusion for 'Business Pursuits' Applied to Worker's PTSD Claims

The "business pursuits" exclusion in an insurance policy can apply if the plaintiff in the underlying action allegedly was injured while working in an office in plaintiff's home.

AC 36922
Prescott, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms, Torts, Emotional Distress

Connecticut Appellate Court

Tavani v. Riley

Father Requested Declaratory Ruling on Child Support Arrearage

A father's claim that he did not owe child support can be justiciable.

AC 37034
Harper, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support, Civil Procedure, Judgments

Connecticut Appellate Court

Town of Ellington v. Robert

$5,500 for Foreclosure Attorney Fees Not an Abuse of Discretion

A trial court did not abuse its discretion when it awarded attorney fees of $5,500 in a tax foreclosure case.

AC 37193
Per Curiam

Practice Areas: Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights, Taxation, Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery

Connecticut Supreme Court

J.E. Robert Co. v. Signature Properties

Defendants Objected To $13 Million Deficiency Judgment

When contract rents are at market rates, the value of the leased fee and fee simple interests of mortgaged property is equivalent.

SC 19483
Zarella, J.

Practice Areas: Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Supreme Court

Villages LLC v. Enfield Planning and Zoning Comm'n

Certification to Consider P&Z's Appeals Improvidently Granted

The Supreme Court can review the record, briefs and oral arguments and dismiss defendant's appeals, because certification was improvidently granted.

SC 19334 and SC 19335
Per Curiam

Practice Areas: Appellate Law - Civil, Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Statewide Grievance Committee

Mozell v. Vaccaro

Attorney Allegedly Waited Years To Schedule Arbitration

An attorney who allegedly does not schedule an arbitration hearing for several years is not diligent, in violation of Rule 1.3 of the Rules of Professional Conduct.

14-0709
Cousineau, Esq., Freedman and Koffsky, Esq.

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Legal Profession

Statewide Grievance Committee

Deangelo v. Vaccaro

Allegedly Attorney Refused To Pay Doctor's Entire Invoice

An attorney who allegedly signs a letter of protection to a medical provider and fails to forward enough settlement money to pay all the medical provider's invoices can violate Rule 1.15(f) of the Rules of Professional Conduct.

14-0668
Cousineau, Esq., Freedman and Koffsky, Esq.

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Legal Profession

Statewide Grievance Committee

Culpepper v. Peck

Peck & Peck Attorney Reprimanded For Sixth Time

An attorney who allegedly fails to keep his client adequately informed can violate Rule 1.4 of the Rules of Professional Conduct.

14-0897
Golger, Esq., and Sheridan

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Legal Profession

Freedom of Information Commission

Treat-Perry v. Superintendent of Sch.

School Was Generally 'Highly Responsive' To Mom's Request

The Freedom of Information Commission may not order any penalty, if respondents used relevant search terms and were "highly responsive" to an individual who requested records, even though they technically violated Connecticut General Statutes §1-210(a) and 1-212(a), because they did not provide one requested record promptly.

2015-226
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Education Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Maurer v. Dir. of Human Resources

Human Resources Not Required To Produce Recs it Did Not Keep

Even if a municipality manual indicates that "original applications, resumes, copies of employment letters and copies of rejection letters" shall be kept, if no evidence exists that respondents actually kept and maintained the records, the municipality is not required to produce them upon request.

2015-176
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing

Freedom of Information Commission

Alston v. Comm'r, Dep't of Correction

Incarcerated Gang Member Sought Copy of DOC Management Manual

Records concerning security risk groups or gangs can be exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act. On Feb. 19, 2015, Ira Alston, an inmate at Northern Correctional Institution in Somers, requested a copy of the Department of Correction's security risk group management manual; documents that caused the Department of Correction to decide in 2002 that the Bloods qualified as a security risk group or gang; and copies of administrative directive 6.14.

2015-189
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Criminal Law

Citizen's Ethics Advisory Board

Advisory Opinion 2015-6

1st Impression on 'Make-Work' Language in C.G.S. §1-97(c)

If no evidence exists of a lobbyist's "make-work" intent at the time that the lobbyist attempts to influence legislation, the prohibition against "make work" conduct in Connecticut General Statutes §1-97(c) will not bar the lobbyist from working to promote or to defeat the proposed legislation.

2015-6
Chiusano, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Vereen v. Garda CL New England

Award of $160,270 Failed To Shock Court' s Conscience

A jury can award economic damages for medical expenses and loss of wages and non-economic damages, for pain and suffering, to an individual who injures his knee at work.

CV13-6038371
Arnold, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Emotional Distress, Personal Injury, Social Services Law, Workers’ Compensation

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Norboe v. Wells Fargo Bank

Homeowner Adequately Alleged Bank Caused Emotional Distress

Allegations that defendants' agents or employees intentionally entered plaintiff's property without permission during a foreclosure action can be sufficient to allege intentional infliction of emotional distress and violation of CUTPA.

CV13-6038377
Blue, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Emotional Distress, Consumer Protection, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Devito v. Yale-New Haven Hosp.

Relative Barred from Cancer Patient Lacks Cause of Action

Allegations that a private hospital barred a relative from visiting a patient with brain cancer can be insufficient to allege "extreme or outrageous conduct," as required to prove intentional infliction of emotional distress.

CV15-6053915
Blue, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Emotional Distress, Health Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Connecticut Light & Power Co. d/b/a/ Eversource v. Town of Avon

Snow Removal After Blizzard Did Not Qualify as Excavation

A municipality is entitled to government immunity for alleged negligence in removing snow after a blizzard, because snow removal does not qualify as "excavation," pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §16-346.

CV15-6027884
Young, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Liability, Immunity, Public Utilities

New London J.D., at Norwich

Karabelas v. Karabelas

Husband's Counsel Zenas Zelotes Is a Necessary Witness

A court can disqualify an attorney who is a necessary witness.

FA14-4125421
Connors, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Cavanaugh v. Suburban Sanitation Serv.

Genuine Issues on Employee's Disability Discrimination Claim

To establish a prima facie case of discrimination, a plaintiff must present evidence: (1) she belongs to a protected class; (2) she was subject to an adverse employment action; and (3) the adverse action took place under circumstances permitting an inference of discrimination, pursuant to Perez-Dickson v. Bridgeport, a 2012 decision of the Connecticut Supreme Court.

CV14-6049408
Miller, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Disability Discrimination

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Doe v. Rackliffe

Three-Year SOL Applies To Alleged Digital Penetration

A three-year statute of limitations applies to allegations that a doctor digitally penetrated the minor plaintiff's anus during annual physicals and engaged in medical malpractice.

CV14-5016102
Young, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Torts, Intentional Torts, Assault, Emotional Distress

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Great Plains Lending LLC v. Connecticut Dep't of Banking

Banking Commissioner To Decide if Companies are 'Arms of Tribe'

The banking commissioner has responsibility to decide whether he has jurisdiction to take enforcement action against companies that might be considered arms of Indian tribes and that allegedly violated Connecticut usury law.

CV15-6028096
Schuman, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Emotional Distress, Health Law

United States District Court

Lutes v. Kawasaki Motors Corp.

Jet Ski Hook's Failure Was Evidence of Malfunction

A court can find that expert testimony would be helpful but is not required, because a jet ski hook's failure provides evidence of malfunction sufficient to infer a design defect.

3:10cv1549
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Products Liability, Design Defect, Malfunction, Manufacturing Defect

United States District Court

Perez v. Lasership

Absent Contemporaneous Records Fee Request Reduced 55 Percent

A court can reduce an attorney fee request 55 percent as a result of lack of contemporaneous time records and vagueness.

3:15cv31
Haight, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Wages and Hours

United States District Court

Oyeolola v. Hartford Fin. Serv. Group

Assistant Director Who Failed Series 26 Exam Was Fired

Even if an employer did not provide an employee 90 days to study for an exam, a reasonable juror could not infer that the employer discharged the worker as a result of discrimination on the basis of race, if the worker was discharged because he failed the exam twice.

3:12cv1685
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Race Discrimination

United States District Court

Zurich Am. Ins. v. Expedient Title

Liability Insurance Policy Declared Void Ab Initio

A court can rescind an insurance policy, if the insured makes material misrepresentations when it attempts to renew the policy.

3:11cv1633
Shea, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms

United States District Court

Torlai v. LaChance

State Trooper Had Probable Cause To Arrest for DUI

A plaintiff cannot prevail on his claim of false arrest, if law enforcement possessed probable cause to arrest.

3:14cv185
Hall, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Torts, Intentional Torts, Abuse of Process

Connecticut Supreme Court

E and F Assoc. v. Zoning Bd. of Appeals of the Town of Fairfield

Owner Did Not Prove Unusual Hardship from Zoning Regulations

An entity that requests a variance must prove that because of some peculiar characteristic of his property the strict application of the zoning regulations produces an unusual hardship.

SC 19325
Rogers, C.J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Jones

Misconduct Did Not Deprive Defendant of Fair Trial

A court can find that prosecutorial misconduct did not make defendant's trial fundamentally unfair.

SC 19097 and 19098
Palmer, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

JP Morgan Chase Bank v. Mendez

Mortgagor Moved To Open After Foreclosure by Sale Took Place

A mortgagor who, as a result of "inattention to the matter" does not file an appearance until after the foreclosure by sale may not be entitled to open the judgment pursuant to the trial court's equitable powers on the basis of mistake, accident or other reasonable cause.

SC 19481
Espinosa, J.

Practice Areas: Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights, Banking and Financial Institutions

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Lavoie

Raffle Fundraiser Did Not Violate State Contractor Ban

A raffle fundraiser may not violate state election laws, if organizers require that contributors who purchase $50 or more in raffle tickets complete a contributor card that indicates whether they are state contractors.

2015-087
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Calderon

Registrar Offered Citizen 250 Voter Registration Forms

Connecticut General Statutes §9-23g requires that upon request a registrar of voters must provide a "reasonable number" of voter registration application forms to an elector.

2015-049
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Brummett

Audit Cleared Campaign of any Financial Improprieties

The audit unit of the State Elections Enforcement Commission can audit financial reports to ascertain whether a campaign treasurer omitted or failed to report campaign expenses.

2014-079
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Cianbro Corp. v. Dir., Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, U.S. Dep't of Labor

Employer Did Not Prove Asthma Made Work-Related Injury Worse

To obtain relief under Section 8(f), of the Longshore and Harbor Workers' Compensation Act, which allows employers to shift legal responsibility to the Longshore Special Fund, an employer must prove that an employee had a pre-existing permanent partial disability that made the employee's ultimate permanent partial disability materially and substantially greater.

15-451

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Employee Benefits, Health Benefits

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Opal Fin. Group v. Opalesque

Plaintiff Failed To Prove Consumers Were Actually Confused

When ruling whether a likelihood of consumer confusion exists, courts in the Second Circuit may consider the strength of the mark, the similarity of two marks, the proximity of products, actual confusion, defendant's good faith in adopting its mark, the quality of defendant's products and the sophistication of the consumers.

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Practice Areas: Intellectual Property, Trademarks, Infringement (Trademark)

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Johnson v. Lynch

Denial of Continuance Not an Abuse of Discretion

An immigration judge does not abuse her discretion in declining to grant a continuance, if the petitioner is only at the first step in a long and discretionary process and relief is conjectural, pursuant to Elbahja v. Keisler, a 2007 decision of the Second Circuit.

14-4701

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Garcia-Velazquez v. Lynch

Petitioner Was Convicted of Possession of Stolen Property

An immigration judge can grant a continuance for good cause shown, pursuant to 8 Code of Federal Regulations §1003.29, and the focus of the inquiry is the likelihood of success on the adjustment application, pursuant to Matter of Rajah, a 2009 decision of the Board of Immigration Appeals.

14-4275 and 15-354

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Galarza-Arias v. Lynch

Ecuadorian Sought Special Immigrant Juvenile Status

A petitioner who did not appeal the denial of his petition for special juvenile status cannot prove any prejudice as a result of the denial of his request for a continuance, so that he could pursue special immigrant juvenile status.

14-4386

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Cardona-Contreras v. Lynch

One Push Was Insufficient to Prove 'Past Persecution'

Allegations that his father and grandfather were murdered before his birth, that someone pushed petitioner in his native country, and that he remained in his native country for several years afterward, without incident, can be insufficient to prove past persecution or a likelihood of future persecution.

14-2828

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Court

Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enter. v. Gibbons

Pro Se Defendant Denied He Borrowed $15,000 from Casino

An answer to a debt collection complaint need only include a general denial and need not plead one of the enumerated affirmative defenses in 12 M.P.T.L. ch. 1, Section 4(d)(2).

CV-DC-2015-143
Lucasey, J.

Practice Areas: Native American Law, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

Waterbury J.D., at Waterbury

Jimenez v. Bingham-Cerron

Pedestrian Awarded $11,136 in Accident with Motor Vehicle

A court can award economic damages for medical expenses and non-economic damages, for pain and suffering, to a pedestrian injured in a motor-vehicle accident.

CV12-6016884
Sheedy, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury, Motor Vehicles, Transportation

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

Greene v. Keating

Reliance on Advice of Counsel Provides a Complete Defense

Reliance in good faith on the advice of counsel can provide a complete defense to an allegation of vexatious litigation.

CV10-6007166
Heller, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Intentional Torts, Abuse of Process, Legal Profession

Waterbury J.D., at Waterbury

Beale v. Martins

Allegedly Employer Allowed Driver Under 17 To Operate Motor Vehicle

To prevail on a claim of negligent entrustment, a plaintiff must prove: (1) actual or constructive knowledge that the person to whom the motor vehicle was loaned was not competent to operate it; and (2) injury resulted from that incompetence.

CV13-6020940
Brazzel-Massaro, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Wrongful Death, Motor Vehicles, Transportation

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Barbieri v. Yocum

Plaintiffs Adequately Alleged Dog Owners Were Reckless

Allegations that previously defendants' dog had bitten four individuals, two of whom had been bitten in the face, and that police had warned defendants that their dog would bite again, can be sufficient to allege a claim that defendants failed to warn or to prevent the dog from biting again and were reckless.

CV15-6054995
Wilson, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Arroyo v. Univ. of Conn. Health Ctr.

Man Who Lost Testicle as Result of Vasectomy Awarded $336,249

A court can award economic damages for medical expenses and non-economic damages, for pain and suffering, to a patient who proves medical malpractice.

CV14-6048585
Scholl, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Damages, Medical Malpractice, Health Law

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Dowling v. Schupp

Court Approved $310 per Hour for Attorney Richard P. Weinstein

A court can award punitive damages in the form of attorney fees to a plaintiff who proves tortious interference with contractual rights and violation of the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act.

CV11-6027560
Shortall, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Torts, Business Torts

Middlesex J.D., at Middletown

State Farm Mut. Auto. Ins. v. Dep't of Transp.

Insurance Co. Is Not a "Person" under Highway-Defect Statute

The highway-defect statute in Connecticut General Statutes §13a-144 does not apply to insurance companies that file subrogation actions to recover money paid to insureds.

CV15-50008478
Vitale, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Transportation, Personal Property

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Fierro v. Fierro

Husband in Contempt of Court After Spending $49K on Renovation

A court can find that a husband is in contempt of court, because he violated the court's automatic orders when he spent $49,000 in marital assets on a renovation without obtaining his wife's consent.

FA15-6052475
Goodrow, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law

Litchfield J.D., at Litchfield

Digiuseppe v. Digiuseppe

Husband Ordered To Pay for Children's College Expenses

The parties divorced in June 2013. Plaintiff wife moved to find the husband in contempt, because he refused to pay college expenses for the parties' children, who are 18 and 19 years old.

FA13-4013019
Gallagher, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Middlesex J.D., at Middletown

Kent Literary Club of Wesleyan Univ. v. Wesleyan Univ.

Students Failed To Adequately Allege Wesleyan Violated CUTPA

Absence evidence of "an actual deceptive practice," or "a practice amounting to a violation of public policy," students at Wesleyan University may be unable to prove that the university violated CUTPA, the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act.

CV15-6013185
Vitale, J.

Practice Areas: Education Law

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Whitnum v. Town of Darien

Divorcee Seeks Injunction To Prevent Arrest for Trespassing

A court can grant injunctive relief to a party who proves: (1) no adequate remedy exists at law; (2) irreparable harm will occur without an injunction; (3) a likelihood exists of prevailing on the merits at trial; and (4) the balance of equities tips in favor of plaintiff.

CV14-50302285
Arnold, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Motion Practice

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Doe v. Town of Madison

Alleged Victim of Stalking Requests to Use Pseudonym

A court can permit the alleged victim of stalking and his parent to use a pseudonym, to protect the public's interest in openness of the Judicial Branch and the litigants' interest in privacy.

CV15-5036102
Pittman, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Parties, Torts

United States District Court

Pau v. Chen

$350 per Hour for Legal Work on FLSA Case Approved

A court can approve attorney fees of $350 per hour for 82 hours of legal work to a plaintiff who wins a substantial award in a federal Fair Labor Standards Act case.

3:14cv841
Arterton, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Labor and Employment, Wages and Hours

United States District Court

United States v. $465,789

Forfeiture of Deceased Defendant's Life Insurance Sought

Allegations that claimant's husband paid his life insurance premiums out of his Citibank account, which he principally funded with money fraudulently obtained from investors, can be sufficient for the government to state a valid claim for forfeiture.

3:15cv1353
Meyer, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Personal Property

United States District Court

Diaz v. Arnone

Prisoner Adequately Alleged First Amendment Retaliation

Allegations that plaintiff was arrested on false claims of weapon possession, because he helped another inmate file a grievance complaint, can be sufficient to state a claim for First Amendment retaliation.

3:14cv323
Meyer, J.

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Torts, Intentional Torts, Abuse of Process

United States District Court

Principal Nat'l Life Ins. v. Coassin

Witness Who Was Disclosed Late Can Testify about Past Practices

Even if discovery has been closed, and a potential witness was not disclosed in either the Rule 26(a) disclosure or the supplemental Rule 26(e) disclosure, a court can open discovery and permit the witness to testify.

3:13cv1520
Arterton, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Evidence, Witnesses, Insurance Law

Connecticut Appellate Court

Costello v. Yale-New Haven Health Serv.

Children Alleged Emotional Distress from Loss of Mom's Rings

Connecticut does not recognize a cause of action for emotional distress that arises out of the loss of property.

AC 37493
Per Curiam

Practice Areas: Torts, Emotional Distress, Health Law

Connecticut Appellate Court

O'Brien v. O'Brien

Wife Awarded 62 to 68 Percent of Entire Marital Estate

A court abuses its discretion, if the court takes a party's purported violations of the automatic orders into account when distributing property, although that party did not dissipate marital assets and was not found in willful contempt of court.

AC 36694
Prescott, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Connecticut Appellate Court

People's United Bank v. Sarno

Mortgagor Argued that Appraisal Referenced Only 1 of 2 Lots Sold

A foreclosure by sale is reasonable, even if the appraisal references only one of the two parcels, if the appraisal references the land records, the Judicial Branch Web site and a notice to bidders, all of which discuss both parcels.

AC 36962
West, J.

Practice Areas: Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Appellate Court

Windham v. Doctor's Assoc.

Trial Court Did Not Compute Specific Amount of Damages

The Appellate Court can order remand, if the trial court did not meet its responsibility to determine a specific amount of monetary damages.

AC 36414
Alvord, J.

Practice Areas: Contracts, Breach, Civil Procedure, Judgments, Business Entities, Franchises

Connecticut Appellate Court

Baker v. Whitnum-Baker

Request for New Trial Denied, Absent Newly Discovered Evidence

A party that does not provide evidence of "newly discovered" evidence that is material and likely to produce a different result and that could not have been discovered earlier, despite the exercise of due diligence, is not entitled to a new trial, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §52-270.

AC 36958 and 36959
Heller, J. and Per Curiam

Practice Areas: Family Law, Evidence

Citizen's Ethics Advisory Board

Advisory Opinion 2015-5

Permanent Legislative Workers Not Entitled To §1-84 Exemption

If a full-time worker uses compensatory, vacation or personnel time to reduce her schedule to less than 35 hours per week, that does not make the worker a "part-time" worker for purposes of Connecticut General Statutes §1-84(d).

2015-5
Chiusano, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law, Labor and Employment, Wages and Hours

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Vazquez v. Lynch

Petitioner Whose Wife Was Pregnant Requested Continuance

Even if petitioner's wife is pregnant, an immigration judge can deny a request for a sixth continuance.

14-4291-ag

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Matute v. Lynch

Ecuadorian Alleged She Was Harassed and Almost Kidnapped

To establish eligibility for asylum or withholding of removal, a petitioner must prove persecution, or fear of persecution, based on "race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion," pursuant to 8 United States Code §1101(a)(42).

14-2455

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Doe v. Lynch

Convicted Drug Trafficker Claimed He Cooperated With Prosecutors

Allegations that a petitioner cooperated with prosecutors may be insufficient to mitigate the presumption that he was convicted of the serious crime of drug trafficking.

12-711-ag

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Thompson

Two-Level Enhancement for Obstruction of Justice Appealed

It constitutes error, for a sentencing court not to find "specific intent" to obstruct justice, prior to ordering an enhancement for obstruction of justice.

14-2667 and 14-2599
Per Curiam

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Evidence

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Litvak

Court Wrongly Excluded Expert Testimony about RMBS Trading

Exclusion of expert testimony that could have informed the jury about the highly-specialized field of residential mortgage-backed securities trading did not constitute harmless error.

14-2902-cr
Straub, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Evidence, Expert Witnesses

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Call Ctr. Tech. v. Interline Travel & Tour

Defendant Effectively Waived Argument that Texas Law Applied

A party that did not raise the choice of law issue in district court, prior to the first appeal, effectively waived its argument.

14-3952-cv

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Choice of Law, Business Entities, Successor Liability

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Oliphant v. Villano

Plaintiff Failed to State Jury Selection and Service Act Claim

The Jury Selection and Service Act requires a district plan to ensure juries "selected at random from a fair cross section of the community," pursuant to 28 United States Code §1861, and a conclusory allegation that minorities and economically disadvantaged individuals were underrepresented in the jury pool is insufficient to state a claim.

14-1069-cv

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Torts, Intentional Torts, Assault, Emotional Distress, Civil Rights

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Keepers v. City of Milford

District Court Not Required to Strike Police Chief's Affidavit

Although Rule 30(b)(6) testimony is binding against an entity, it does not prevent a deponent from correcting, explaining or supplementing the testimony, and a court can consider another individual's affidavit that clarifies the testimony.

14-1581-cv and 14-2113-cv
Cabranes, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Constitutional Law

Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Court

Gaetano v. Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enter.

Foxwoods Casino Customer Alleged Flatbed Cart Struck Him

A court can reduce an award as a result of comparative negligence, if evidence exists that plaintiff easily could have stepped aside and avoided any contact with a flatbed cart that allegedly struck him.

MPTC-CV-PI-2012-186
Londregan, J.

Practice Areas: Native American Law, Torts, Personal Injury, Damages

Mashantucket Pequot Court of Appeals

Father v. Mother

Appellant Who Won Extension Did Not File Appellate Brief

An appellant is required to file a brief within 30 days after filing notice of the appeal, pursuant to M.P.R.A.P. Rule 5(d).


Bigler, J.

Practice Areas: Appellate Law - Civil, Timeliness, Native American Law, Family Law

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Doe v. Tissera

Sex Abuse Plaintiff Did Not Allege Foreseeable Risk of Harm

Absent allegations of a foreseeable risk of harm, a defendant may not owe a duty of care to an individual who allegedly was sexually abused.

CR14-5038159
Moukawsher, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Emotional Distress, Personal Injury, Constitutional Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Hannigan v. Constr. Tech. Group

VA Hospital's General Contractor Not A 'Product Seller'

A general contractor who was not in the business of selling sheetrock, or placing the sheetrock in the stream of commerce, did not qualify as a "product seller" under Connecticut General Statutes §52-572m of the Connecticut Product Liability Act.

CV14-6024993
Swienton, J.

Practice Areas: Products Liability

Middlesex J.D., at Middletown

Fritz v. Uricchio

Incumbent Who Lost by One Vote Not Entitled To Injunction

An incumbent who lost by one vote and who fails to establish a likelihood of success on the merits, or that the equities tip in his favor on his claim that he is entitled to another election, may not obtain a temporary injunction on his claim that his opponent should not be sworn into office.

CV15-6014480
Domnarski, J.

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

State v. Osbourne

15 Years for Shooting Victim in Hartford Bar Affirmed

An individual who allegedly walks into a Hartford bar, argues with another customer, pulls out a gun and shoots the other customer can be sentenced to 15 years in prison.

CR11-654750
Kahn, J., Fischer, J., and Ginocchio, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

State v. Meletrich

25 Years for Armed Robbery of McDonald's Restaurant Affirmed

An individual who allegedly masterminds an armed robbery can be sentenced to 25 years in prison.

CR07-237770
Kahn, J., Vitale, J., and Ginocchio, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States District Court

Safeco Ins. Co. of Am. v. Lawrence Brunoli Inc.

Plaintiff Awarded $13,572 To Defend Appeal to Second Circuit

The district court can award supplemental attorney fees based on a contract and incurred to defend the decision on appeal.

3:12cv1105
Shea, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Contracts, Breach

United States District Court

Crawford v. Nat'l R.R. Corp.

Worker Complained About 'N' Word and Dark-Faced Lynched Doll

A plaintiff who allegedly complains about only two incidents of hostile-work environment in four years may not be able to prove that alleged race discrimination is more than "episodic."

3:15cv131
Arterton, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Discrimination, Race Discrimination

United States District Court

Chapman v. Sikorsky Aircraft Corp.

Insubordinate Sikorsky Manager Did Not Prove Age Discrimination

A plaintiff who is insubordinate may not be able to prove that age discrimination caused his discharge—even if a supervisor referred to plaintiff as an "old prunella" and replaced plaintiff with "substantially younger" workers.

3:13cv518
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Age Discrimination

United States District Court

E. Point Sys. v. Maxim

Accountant Can Testify about Personal Knowledge of Transaction

An accountant who possesses personal knowledge, because he was involved personally with pertinent financial statements or transactions, can testify about that personal knowledge.

3:13cv215
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Evidence, Admissibility, Witnesses

Connecticut Appellate Court

Cragg v. Adm'r Unemployment Compensation Act

Manager Resigned Before Her Job Was Eliminated

A manager who submitted her written resignation, because she wrongly believed that her job was about to be eliminated, was not entitled to unemployment compensation.

AC 36868
Lavine, J.

Practice Areas: Social Services Law, Unemployment Compensation, Labor and Employment

Connecticut Appellate Court

Athena Holdings v. Marcus

Attorney Jan Marcus Not Entitled to Attorney Fees under §42-150bb

A relative of a patient who is unsuccessful in an attempt to defend against a nursing facility's breach-of-contract count is not entitled to attorney fees, pursuant to C.G.S. §42-150bb, even if his defense on promissory estoppel and negligence claims is successful.

AC 35979
Gruendel, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Health Law

Connecticut Appellate Court

Darin v. Cais

Property Owner Ordered To Comply with State Building Code

A court can order that a property owner fill an open foundation, if the owner concedes that conditions on his property violated the State Building Code.

AC 37426
Alvord, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Appellate Court

Tittle v. Skip-Tittle

Wife Moved To Reinstate Alimony of $1,803 per Week

Parties are not allowed to file motions to reinstate alimony and, to the extent that the pro se wife's motion to reinstate alimony constituted a motion to modify, the wife failed to establish a substantial change in circumstances.

AC 36231
Gruendel, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Connecticut Appellate Court

In Re: James

Volatile Mom, Prone to Violence, Did Not Rehabilitate Sufficiently

A trial court can find that a biological mother did not rehabilitate sufficiently, because she was volatile, prone to violence, unable to set appropriate limits, unwilling to talk with the minor children's therapists, and unable to help the minor children develop coping skills to manage anxiety.

AC 37739
Prescott, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Connecticut Appellate Court

Chowdhury v. Masiat

Omission of Support for 17-Year-Old Was Abuse of Discretion

A trial court abuses its discretion, if the trial court omits child support for a 17-year-old child without any explanation other than that the parents are to contribute to college expenses.

AC 36130
Mihalakos, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Connecticut Appellate Court

Oliphant v. Comm'r of Correction

Petitioner Filed about 13 State and Federal Habeas Petitions

Res judicata provides that a final judgment on the merits, without fraud or collusion, by a court of competent jurisdiction, is conclusive of causes of action and facts or issues litigated.

AC 37028
Lavine, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Connecticut Appellate Court

Connors v. Rolls-Royce N. Am.

Court Wrongly Concluded Forum Selection Clause Was Enforceable

A forum selection clause in a contract may not be enforceable, if the underlying contract is not enforceable, because it remained unsigned.

AC 36980
Alvord, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Venue, Parties, Contracts, Breach

Connecticut Appellate Court

In Re: Tiarra

Appeal Became Moot when Minor Child Turned 18

If a minor child turns 18 years old, and her commitment to the petitioner of the Department of Children and Families expires before the appeal is decided, the appeal may become moot.

AC 37781
Lavine, J.

Practice Areas: Appellate Law - Civil, Family Law, Custody and Child Support

State Elections Enforcement Commission

In Re: Moore

Garrett Moore Jr. to Pay $1,000 for Donations to Senate Campaign

An individual who allegedly makes contributions in other individuals' names can violate Connecticut General Statutes §9-622.

2014-017
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Sanders

Nappier's Campaign Treasurer Adequately Described Expenses

Connecticut General Statutes §9-608(c) requires that a treasurer itemize expenses on a campaign finance report.

2014-091
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

Office of the Attorney General

Letter to: Perez

Board Cannot Rescind Credit of Teacher Lacking Certification

The State Teachers' Retirement Board does not possess the authority to rescind credit for a teacher, principal or superintendent who lacks proper certification.

2015-04
Jepsen, A.G.

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

Office of the Attorney General

Letter to: Baio

'Watch Dog' State Agency Heads Possess Final Authority in Hiring

Heads of various "watch dog" state agencies possess final decision making authority in employment matters.

2015-06
Jepsen, A.G.

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

Danbury Bd. of Educ. and Teamsters, Local 677

School Custodian's Request for Six Weeks of Vacation Denied

An employer can deny a request for six weeks of vacation at a time when the workload has increased and other workers are away as a result of illness and injury.

2015-A-0109
Weiner, Esq., Kuehnel and Johnson

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements, Administrative Law

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

Stamford Yellow Cab v. Dep't of Transp.

Taxicab Companies Seek To Enforce Rules Against Uber Tech and Lyft

Sovereign immunity can provide a defense to state agencies that are sued because they allegedly did not enforce statutes and regulations that govern transportation.

CV15-6024935
Karazin, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Transportation, Administrative Law

Waterbury J.D., at Waterbury

Sloane v. Bhatia

Plaintiff Alleged Boyfriend's Ex-Wife Filed False Complaint

Allegations that an ex-wife allegedly filed a false police complaint to obtain an advantage in family court, and that the false complaint led to in an investigation by the Department of Children and Families, can be sufficient to allege extreme and outrageous conduct for purposes of intentional infliction of emotional distress.

CV14-6023186
Roraback, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Emotional Distress, Family Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Longo v. Martin

Tenant Alleged Landlord Recklessly Did Not Repair Stairs

Allegations that defendant landlord promised and failed to make a repair and that plaintiff tenant was injured can be insufficient to state a claim for recklessness.

CV15-6028549
Young, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury, Premises Liability, Landlord/Tenant Law, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Abdelrouf v. Adm'r, Unemployment Compensation Act

Worker Refused To Immediately Pay Back Mistaken Payroll Payment

A worker who allegedly receives a payment that was intended for another worker, and who refuses to immediately pay back the money, engages in "willful misconduct" and may not be eligible for unemployment benefits.

CV14-5035047
Wilson, J.

Practice Areas: Social Services Law, Workers’ Compensation, Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

PHL Variable Ins. v. Charter Oak Trust

Policies with Material Misrepresentations Rescinded

To prevail on misrepresentation, an insurance company must prove: (1) a misrepresentation or untrue statement by the insured that was; (2) knowingly made; and (3) material to defendant's decision to insure.

CV10-6012621
Robaina, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms

Middlesex J.D., at Middletown

Bartlett v. State Farm Fire & Cas.

Plaintiff Alleged Insurer Did Not Apply its own Written Policies

Allegations that defendant insurer did not meet a contractual requirement as a result of the insurer's allegedly "dishonest, self-interested motive" are sufficient to allege a bad-faith insurance practice.

CV15-6013083
Vitale, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms, Bad Faith

Litchfield J.D., at Litchfield

Lamont v. Lamont

Father Won Sole Custody After Mom Acted Unilaterally

A court can award the father sole custody and primary residence, because the parents were unable to cooperate, and the mother acted unilaterally, without conferring with the father.

FA08-4007453
Shah, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Tolland J.D., at Rockville

State v. Smith

55 Years for First-Degree Armed Bank Robbery Affirmed

A court can sentence a defendant who was convicted on charges of first-degree armed bank robbery to 55 years in prison, even if another individual who was a co-defendant was only sentenced to 15 years.

CR10-96200
Ginocchio, J., Fischer, J., and Alexander, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law

Litchfield J.D., at Litchfield

State v. Martin

Teen Claimed 20 Years in Prison Was Illegal Life Sentence

A teen who was sentenced to an effective sentence of 20 years in prison did not receive a life sentence, and the sentencing court was not required to consider Miller factors.

CR07-12293, CR06-0121791 and CR06-1211073
Danaher, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Johnson v. Preleski

Fax Sent To Marshal Did Not Constitute 'Personal Delivery'

If a petitioner sends a writ, summons and petition via facsimile to a marshal that may not qualify as a "personal delivery" to the marshal for purposes of the savings statute in Connecticut General Statutes §52-593a.

CV14-6026324
Young, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Jurisdiction and Service of Process, Statute of Limitations

United States District Court

Wild v. Eliot

Father's Motion To Return Minor Child to Mexico Denied

A court can deny a father's motion to return his minor child to Mexico pursuant to the Hague Convention, if the minor child's "habitual residence" at the time of removal was in the United States, not Mexico.

3:15cv1526
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support, International Law (Public)

United States District Court

Powell v. Schindler Elevator

Elevator Expert Did Not Know what Caused Malfunction

A court can admit the testimony of an elevator expert, even if the expert is unable to opine about the exact cause of an elevator malfunction.

3:14cv579
Garfinkel, J.

Practice Areas: Evidence, Admissibility, Expert Witnesses, Torts, Personal Injury

United States District Court

Levy v. Gen. Elec.

Californian Consumer Whose Microwave Exploded Can Plead Over

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has found that although unjust enrichment does not constitute a "stand alone" cause of action, a Californian consumer can plead a quasi-contract claim for restitution, if the defendant was unjustly enriched as a result of mistake, fraud or coercion.

3:13cv1799
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Consumer Protection, Products Liability, Design Defect

United States District Court

Price v. PetSmart

Pet Adoption Case Did Not Meet Jurisdictional Threshold

Diversity jurisdiction can exist, if plaintiff is a citizen of Connecticut, defendants are incorporated and possess principal place of businesses in other states and the amount in controversy exceeds $75,000.

3:15cv1329
Meyer, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Jurisdiction and Service of Process

United States District Court

Chan v. Dahlia Group

Law Enforcement Privilege Not Applicable to I-95 Shooting

A law enforcement privilege can apply, if relevant documents contain information pertaining to law enforcement techniques and procedures; information that might endanger witnesses and law enforcement personnel; or information that would harm the ability of law enforcement to conduct future investigations.

3:15cv1
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Evidence, Witnesses, Privileges, Torts, Personal Injury

Connecticut Appellate Court

Schneider v. Schneider

Trial Court's Denial of Request for Reimbursement Reversed

A trial court can abuse its discretion when it denies a request for reimbursement of amounts that were incorrectly paid toward the mortgage, taxes and insurance of the former marital residence.

AC 36423
Gruendel, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Martinez

Impropriety Did Not Deprive Defendant of Right to Fair Trial

A prosecutorial impropriety that is not particularly severe may not deprive defendant of his due-process right to a fair trial.

SC 19198
Zarella, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Evidence, Admissibility, Constitutional Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Gleason v. Smolinski

Court Did Not Conduct Falsity Analysis of Alleged Defamation

When allegedly defamatory statements are made about a private figure on a matter of public concern, the allegedly defamatory statements must be provably false.

SC 19342
Robinson, J.

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Torts, Intentional Torts, Defamation

Connecticut Supreme Court

Cales v. Office of Victim Serv.

Service on Defendant Complied with 30-Day Limitations Period

Service of process on the defendant within 30 days is sufficient to meet the requirements of Connecticut General Statutes §54-211a, even if the complaint is not filed in court within 30 days.

SC 19458
Eveleigh, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations

Connecticut Supreme Court

Lieberman v. Aronow

Report About Dr.'s Management Style Not Exempt from Disclosure

Reports written in response to a grievance about a department chairman's management style may not qualify for an exemption from disclosure in Connecticut General Statutes §10a-154a that applies to "record[s] of the performance and evaluation of a faculty member."

SC 19452
Eveleigh, J.

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Office of the Attorney General

Letter to: Fasano

State Legislature Can Exceed Spending Cap with Majority Vote

The constitutional spending cap has no current legal effect.

2015-05
Jepsen, A.G.

Practice Areas: Election and Political Law, Administrative Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Perez-Saurez v. Lynch

Allegedly, Ecuadorian Provided Court False Mailing Address

An alien who allegedly provides the court a false address and, as a result, is unaware of and does not attend a hearing can be ordered deported, regardless of the fact that he did not attend, pursuant to 8 United States Code §1229a(b)(5)(A).

14-2157

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Mutale v. Lynch

Petitioner Did Not Prove Well-Founded Fear of Persecution

A petitioner may not prove a well-founded fear of persecution, if the immigration judge identifies the evidence that he requires, and petitioner fails to explain why he could not obtain it.

12-2455

Practice Areas: Immigration Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Spaulding; United States v. Cari

Former Cop Received Three-Level Upward Enhancement

A court can enhance a sentence because defendant former police officer allegedly filed false police reports and interfered with the state criminal justice system.

14-420-cr and 14-424-cr

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Ivory

Defendant Who Sold Crack when on Release Sentenced to Two Years

A district court can sentence a defendant who allegedly sells crack cocaine and violates conditions of supervised release to 24 months in prison.

14-3683-cr

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Goins

51 Months for Trafficking Was in Sentencing Guidelines Range

A defendant may not prove that a sentence is substantively unreasonable, if the sentence is within the recommended United States Sentence Guidelines range.

14-4789-cr

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Bond v. Conn. Bd. of Nursing

ADA Claim Was Barred by Three-Year Statute of Limitations

A three-year statute of limitations applies to allegations that a defendant violated the Americans with Disabilities Act.

15-264

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Civil Rights, Administrative Law

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

Hynes v. Appeal from Probate

911 Fund Recipient's Mom Objects to Legal Guardianship Requirement

A parent of a minor child may not receive or use any property belonging to the minor in an amount in excess of $10,000, unless the parent is appointed guardian of the minor child's estate, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §45a-631(a).

CV14-6022696
Tobin, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Trusts and Estates

New London J.D., at New London

Thomas v. Dellfield Laundry

Plaintiff Protested Inability to Allege 'Mode of Operation' Theory

It can be unfair and prejudicial to an opponent, to add a fresh claim on the eve of trial that defendant allegedly was negligent under the "mode of operation" theory.

CV-6017963
Bates, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury, Premises Liability

Middlesex J.D.

Clark v. Knochenhauer

Plaintiff Did Not Allege Employer Knew that Deliveryman Was Unsafe

To allege a cause of action for negligent retention, a plaintiff must plead and prove that an employer, during the course of employment, became aware of problems that indicated the employee was no longer a suitable worker.

CV14-6011914
Aurigemma, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury, Motor Vehicles, Transportation

New London J.D., at New London

Wheelis v. Backus Corp.

Decedent's Wife Did Not Adequately Claim Gross Negligence

Contemporaneous observation of gross professional negligence is a required element of the tort of bystander emotional distress.

CV14-6022485
Vacchelli, J.

Practice Areas: Health Law, Torts, Emotional Distress, Medical Malpractice

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Majoros v. Szelenyi

Wife Awarded $3,000 per Month and $325,000 Lump Sum

A court can consider health, education, age and earning capacity when it distributes property.

FA15-6053050
Goodrow, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law

Waterbury J.D., at Waterbury

Schaer v. Vaziuddin

Juror Testified that 'Mean' Comments Did Not Affect Results

When considering a claim of juror misconduct, a court must decide if the alleged misconduct was such as to make it probable that a juror's mind was influenced, so as to render the juror an unfair and prejudiced juror.

CV10-6007936
Roraback, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Trial, Torts, Personal Injury, Premises Liability

New Haven J.D., at Meriden

Ouellette, Deganis & Gallagher v. Trendowski

Apparent 1st Impression on Standing To Sue For Vexatiousness

Absent evidence of an assignment of rights, a law firm may not possess standing to commence a suit alleging vexatious litigation of behalf of an associate attorney who previously worked for the law firm.

CV13-6006017
Cronan, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Standing, Torts, Intentional Torts, Abuse of Process, Legal Profession

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

O'Brien v. City of New Haven

1st Impression on Timeliness of Action for Reimbursement of Fees

A municipal worker who is sued may not possess an "ascertainable" harm until he pays an attorney to provide a legal defense and obtains judgment in his favor.

CV15-6054959
Fischer, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Taxation, Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery

United States District Court

Summerlin v. Almost Family Inc.

Nurse Who Proved FMLA Retaliation Awarded $502,402

A court can compute loss of back pay by multiplying a worker's annual salary when working for defendant by a reasonable amount of time and then subtracting the amount that the worker earned elsewhere during that same time.

3:12cv7
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Family and Medical Leave Act, Social Services Law, Workers’ Compensation

United States District Court

Schipke v. Tracfone Wireless

Homeless Woman Protested Loss of TracFone Cell Service

A homeless person who refused to provide an address, even the address of a shelter or a friend, may not qualify for government subsidized cell service.

3:15cv1244
Underhill, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law

United States District Court

Novak v. Yale Univ.

Plaintiff 'Stonewalled' and Engaged in 'Document Dump'

A court can award attorney fees to an opponent, if a party "effectively stonewalls" during discovery and provides a "document dump."

3:14cv153
Merriam, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Labor and Employment, Discrimination, Sex Discrimination, Sexual Harassment

United States District Court

McVarish v. Bradco

ADEA Plaintiff Alleged Timeliness Did Not Prejudice Former Employer

A Title VII claimant must file a complaint within 90 days of the date that the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission releases its jurisdiction.

3:14cv1331
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Labor and Employment, Discrimination, Age Discrimination, Disability Discrimination

United States District Court

Igidi v. Dep't of Correction

Plaintiff Did Not Respond to 18 of 30 Production Requests

A court can dismiss with prejudice, if a party fails to comply with discovery requests after fair warning is furnished.

3:13cv1338
Chatigny, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Labor and Employment, Discrimination, Race Discrimination

Connecticut Appellate Court

Success v. Curcio

Purported Landlord Did Not Prove it Owned Premises

To prevail in a summary-process action, a landlord is required to prove: (1) ownership of the property; (2) that defendants' right or privilege to occupy the premises terminated; (3) that the landlord served a notice to quit on defendants; and (4) that defendants remained in possession of the premises.

AC 36458
Keller, J.

Practice Areas: Landlord/Tenant Law, Business Entities

Connecticut Appellate Court

State v. Bialowas

Defendant Alleged Reasonable Fear that Victim Would Harm Him

A defendant who implicitly waived a claim that the court omitted a jury instruction about defendant's reasonable fear that the victim would harm him cannot prove that the trial court committed plain error, as a result of the omission.

AC 36250
Sullivan, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Connecticut Appellate Court

U.S. Bank v. Schaeffer

Bank Possessed Standing To Enforce Note Endorsed in Blank

A party in possession of the note, endorsed in blank and payable to its bearer is the valid holder of the note and can enforce it.

AC 36910
Borden, J.

Practice Areas: Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

Connecticut Appellate Court

Bombero v. Bombero

Court Sua Sponte Granted Judgment on Foreclosure Complaint

A trial court lacks authority to issue summary judgment on grounds not raised or briefed by the parties and that do not involve the court's subject-matter jurisdiction.

AC 35168 and AC 35822
DiPentima, C.J.

Practice Areas: Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

Connecticut Appellate Court

Bank of Stamford v. Schlesinger

Guarantor Not Informed when Court Corrected Clerical Error

A trial court can correct a clerical error in a recorded judgment, even if a motion for order has not been served on one of the defendants.

AC 36661
Lavine, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Judgments, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

Connecticut Supreme Court

Lawrence v. O & G Indus.; Beamer v. O & G Indus.

Construction Companies Lacked Duty of Care To Plant Workers

Construction companies, whose alleged negligence allegedly caused an explosion at a power plant, did not owe a duty of care to at-will workers at the power plant, who suffered economic loss when they lost their jobs.

SC 19330 and SC 19331
Robinson, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Torts, Business Torts

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Walker

Defendant Did Not Preserve Claim He Was Excluded from Chambers

To meet the interests of justice, an appellate court can exercise its authority under Practice Book §60-2 and order "rectification" of the record, to include items that took place off the record.

SC 19281
McDonald, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Wright

No Proof Multiple Convictions Violated Double Jeopardy Clause

Multiple convictions under Connecticut General Statutes §53a-70c that arise from the same transaction do not violate the Double Jeopardy Clause.

SC 19189
Espinosa, J.

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Criminal Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Szynkowicz

Deputy Took Over After Registrar of Voters Resigned

A deputy registrar of voters serves at the pleasure of the registrar of voters and can become the registrar, if the registrar of voters resigns.

2015-048
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Quattro v. Town Clerk, Town of E. Hartford

Citizen Protested Restrictions on Examining Death Records

Before a citizen inspects the public portion of death records that contain Social Security and other exempt information, the citizen must request that the town clerk make a copy of the death record and redact any exempt information.

FIC 2015-166
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Ladd v. Adm'r, State of Conn., Teachers' Retirement Bd.

HIPAA Does Not Protect Records of Retired Teachers

Confidentiality provisions in HIPAA may not prevent disclosure of the names of retirees and the amounts and dates of medical subsidies that the Teachers' Retirement Board provides.

FIC 2015-061
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Health Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Labella v. Bd. of Educ., Town of Trumbull

BOE Held Executive Session To Discuss Youth Association

Although executive sessions can appropriately be held to discuss a specific worker, they may not be appropriate to discuss an entire class or category of workers.

FIC 2015-165
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Education Law

Freedom of Information Commission

D'Angelo v. Chairman, Lake Zoar Auth.

Meeting Minutes Were Available To Public 48 Days After Meeting

Connecticut General Statutes §1-225(a) requires that meeting minutes of a public agency be available to the public within seven days of the public agency's meeting.

FIC 2015-139
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Cushman v. Records Supervisor, State of Conn.

Client's Electro-Chemical Test Results Found Exempt

Records that involve a criminal matter that remains pending can be exempt from disclosure, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §1-215.

FIC 2015-187
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Criminal Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Bango v. Superintendent of Sch.

Connecticut Kids First Requested Info about Threats and Bullying

The Freedom of Information Act does not require that public agencies create public records in response to a records request.

FIC 2015-168
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Education Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Aronow v. Freedom of Info. Officer, Univ. of Conn. Health Ctr.

UCONN Health Center Ordered to Provide Records within 9 Months

The Freedom of Information Commission can order an agency to make a "good faith effort" to provide responsive documents within nine months to an individual who requested 824,500 pages of documents.

FIC 2015-127
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Health Law

Waterbury J.D., at Waterbury

Richmond v. Richmond

Passenger Did Not Prove that DOT Was Responsible for Defect

If an operator's negligent driving of a motor vehicle is a substantial factor in a motor-vehicle accident, a passenger may not prevail on her claim that the state Department of Transportation is legally responsible as a result of a highway defect.

CV11-6007980S
Trombley, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury, Motor Vehicles

New London J.D., at New London

Looney v. Zoning Bd. of Appeals of the Town of Old Lyme

Evidence Supported Claim that Plaintiffs Maintained Junkyard

The zoning terms "refuse" and "detrimental to nearby property" are not too vague to enforce, in violation of property owners' due-process rights.

CV14-6021297
Devine, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Gibbons v. Zoning Bd. of Appeals of the Town of Fairfield

Zoning Board Did Not Provide Notice for Rescheduled Meeting

A zoning board of appeals lacks jurisdiction, if the board does not publish notice in a newspaper, when a meeting is canceled as a result of a severe snowstorm, and another meeting on the same subject is held the following week.

CV15-6049529
Radcliffe, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

New London J.D., at New London

Leone v. Sharron

Landlord that Withheld Security Deposit Owed Double Damages

A landlord that does not return the tenants' security deposit can owe double damages, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §47a-21.

CV15-5014867
Bates, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

Woo v. Rosand

Wife Awarded Residence and Lump Sum of $750,000

A court can find one party at greater fault for the breakdown of a marital relationship, as a result of an extramarital affair and dissipation of substantial marital assets.

FA13-4024835S
Shay, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Family Law

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

Armstead v. Laureano

Each Parent To Pay $2,500 per Year Toward College Expenses

A court can order parents to contribute to college education expenses for their children. The court found the following facts.

FA11-4021898S
Tindill, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Teodoro v. Town of Bristol

Plaintiff Won Motion To Substitute Party Plaintiff

A court can grant a motion to change the name of the party plaintiff, if an action is commenced in the name of the wrong individual as a result of mistake.

CV15-6027852
Young, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Parties, Motion Practice, Torts, Personal Injury

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Shepard v. Hoar

Third Complaint Was Filed too Late To Be Saved by §52-592(a)

The phrase "original action," for purposes of the accidental-failure-of-suit statute, means the first action filed within the statute of limitations.

CV15-6055529
Blue, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Torts, Personal Injury, Motor Vehicles

New London J.D., at New London

Clapper v. Gallup

Parents' Request for Sample of Sole Survivor's DNA Denied

A court can deny a request for a sample of a civil defendant's DNA, if the court is not persuaded that the request, if granted, would lead to the discovery of admissible evidence.

CV13-6015755
Cole-Chu, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Evidence, Torts, Wrongful Death, Motor Vehicles

United States District Court

Mercado v. PRRC

Manager Alleged 8 to 10 Cops 'Swarmed' Him when He Arrived

Allegations that as a result of false accusations eight to 10 police officers swarmed plaintiff when he arrived at work and placed plaintiff in a patrol car in front of customers and co-workers can be sufficient to allege negligent infliction of emotional distress.

3:15cv637
Arterton, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Emotional Distress, Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Race Discrimination

United States District Court

Juber v. Barnes

State Employees Won $81K in Fees and Costs in Class Action

A court can award attorney fees and costs to plaintiffs who negotiate and settle a class-action employment discrimination case.

3:14cv90
Bryant, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Civil Procedure, Class Actions, Labor and Employment, Discrimination

United States District Court

Kim v. State Farm Fire and Cas.

Homeowners Did Not Prove Bad-Faith Denial of Claim

Evidence of a coverage dispute can be insufficient to prove that an insurance company acted in bad faith and breached the covenant of good faith and fair dealing.

3:15cv879
Bryant, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Policy Terms

United States District Court

Spencer v. Kenny

Defendant Lacked Good Cause for Failure to Comply with Discovery

A party who lacks "substantial" justification for his alleged failure to comply with discovery requests for 27 months can be ordered to pay attorney fees.

3:11cv50
Martinez, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Civil Rights, Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery

Connecticut Appellate Court

Braham v. Newbould

Broken Eyeglasses Hinge Did Not Qualify as Serious Medical Need

An inmate with extreme nearsightedness and a severe astigmatism who does not immediately receive a replacement for his old pair of eyeglasses, which have a broken hinge, may not be able to prove deliberate indifference to a serious medical need.

AC 36235
Alvord, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Landmark Inv. Group v. Calco Constr. and Dev.

High Court Reinstated $4 Million Award for Tortious Interference

Plaintiff buyer can prove tortious interference of contract, if it proves it lost approximately $4 million in profits, because defendant enticed the seller to repudiate a sales contract and exerted extreme economic pressure.

SC 19287
McDonald, J.

Practice Areas: Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Supreme Court

Kleen Energy Sys. v. Comm'r of Energy and Envtl. Protection

PURA Lacked Authority to Issue Declaratory Ruling

Connecticut General Statutes §4-176 provides that an agency can issue a declaratory ruling on "the applicability to specified circumstances" of a "final decision" on a matter within the agency's jurisdiction.

SC 19362
Espinosa, J.

Practice Areas: Energy and Natural Resources, Administrative Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Michael T. v. Comm'r of Correction

Counsel Possessed Strategic Reasons Not to Call Expert

Failure to present an expert witness may not constitute ineffective assistance, if trial counsel possesses a legitimate trial strategy.

SC 19229
Zarella, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Evidence, Expert Witnesses, Constitutional Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Davis v. Comm'r of Correction

1st Impression on Defense Counsel's Failure to Argue

Prejudice to petitioner can be presumed, if defense counsel agreed with the state's recommendation and did not do anything to advocate for his client at sentencing.

SC 19286
Robinson, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Constitutional Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Dep't of Transp. v. White Oak

State Wrongly Withheld $5.3 Million as Liquidated Damages

A contract clause that provided for liquidated damages of $12,000 per day was unreasonable and constituted an unenforceable penalty.

SC 19165
Palmer, J.

Practice Areas: Contracts, Breach, Remedies, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Arbitration (ADR)

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Mrowka

1st Impression on Claim that Citizen Voted Twice in Referendum

A citizen who allegedly votes twice in a referendum can be fined $500. The registrars of voters of the Town of Colchester filed a complaint and alleged that in May 2014 Bette Nicotera voted twice at a budget referendum.

2014-070
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Capone

Computer Indicated Campaign Contributor Was Credit Union CEO

The State Elections Enforcement Commission can find that a treasurer did not knowingly violate the law, when she used a computer program to populate data fields on a campaign form, and the computer program furnished outdated information.

2015-106
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

Thompson Bd. of Educ. and CSEA/SEIU, Local 2001

Drivers' Complaint Was Not Filed Timely, within 12 Days

A union can waive a right to arbitrate, if the union knows about and does not file a grievance within 12 days.

2015-A-0175
Panagrossi, Duby and Weiner

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

City of Torrington and IAFF, Local 1567

Request To Arbitrate Was Not Filed Timely, within 45 Days

A grievance may not be arbitrable, if the union does not file a request to arbitrate within 45 days after a request for payment is denied.

2015-A-0160
Kuehnel, Lipton and Sullivan

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

City of Bridgeport and IAFF, Local 834

Firefighters Alleged City Canceled Special Leaves

Even if two local grievances concern the same cause of action and remedy, that may not automatically bar the second grievance.

2015-A-0176
Hampton, Massa and Shay

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Garcia v. Hebert

Alleged Catalyst for Change Not Entitled to Attorney Fees

To receive attorney fees as a "prevailing party," a plaintiff must not only obtain a material alteration of the parties' legal relationship but the change must also be judicially sanctioned.

14-4611

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Civil Rights

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Allco Fin. v. Klee

Disappointed Low Bidder Lacks Cause of Action under §1983

Because the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act provides a private right of action, a low bidder lacks a remedy under 42 United States Code §1983 and 1988.

15-20
Katzmann, J.

Practice Areas: Energy and Natural Resources, Administrative Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Cote

46 Months for Alleged Evasion of Taxes Affirmed

It may not constitute reversible error, if the district court does not offer an instruction about evidence concerning an IRS booklet, The Truth About Frivolous Tax Arguments.

14-2032-cr

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Taxation, Evidence

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

RBC Aircraft Prod. v. Precise Mach. & Mfg.

'Seriously Erroneous' $3.9 Million Verdict Merited New Trial

When a verdict is contrary to most of the evidence and "seriously erroneous," a court can order a new trial.

14-2911

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Trial

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Wells Fargo Bank v. Konover Dev.

Jury Reasonably Applied Identity Rule in Konover Case

The identity rule requires that there be such a unity of interest and ownership that the independence of the corporation in effect ceased or never began.

14-3091-cv

Practice Areas: Business Entities, Civil Procedure, Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery

Middlesex J.D., at Middletown

Sepega v. DeLaura

'Firefighter's Rule' Barred Cop's Recovery for Injuries from Rescue

The firefighter's rule can preclude recovery to a police officer who allegedly was injured when he kicked in a door to rescue an occupant.

CV15-6013298
Vitale, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Disciplinary Counsel v. Krawitz

NY Lawyer Disbarred 15 Years for Unauthorized Practice

A court can disbar a lawyer who is not admitted to the bar of the State of Connecticut and who engages in the unauthorized practice of law in Connecticut.

CV15-6057676
Robaina, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Torts, Personal Injury

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

State v. Sanford

Municipal Worker Convicted of Larceny Lost Pension Benefits

If a municipal worker engages in larceny, the State of Connecticut can move to revoke pension benefits, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §1-110a.

CV13-6038989
Elgo, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Employee Benefits, Pensions and Other Retirement Benefits

New Haven J.D., at Meriden

Jurgilewicz v. Jurgilewicz

Wife Awarded Residence, GMC and $669 Per Week

A court can consider the parties' ages, health and incomes when it distributes property.

FA13-4019524
Klatt, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Escobar v. Escobar

Mom Did Not Prove Relocation Would Help Financial Situation

A court can deny a mother's motion to relocate with her two minor children, if the mother does not prove that relocation will help her and the minor children financially.

FA14-4048631S
Owen, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Ansonia/Milford J.D.

State v. Fay

Eight Years for Accidentally Shooting Brother Affirmed

An individual who allegedly suffers from substance abuse and who shot and killed a relative when drunk can be sentenced to 10 years in prison, execution suspended after eight years.

CR10-74550
Ginocchio, J., Fischer, J., and Alexander, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Fonville-Smith v. Comm'r of Motor Vehicles

Motorist Smoked Marijuana and Drove without Headlights

Probable cause can exist to arrest a motorist who admits that she smoked marijuana earlier that day and then drove without headlights and failed the walk-and-turn test.

CV15-6029440
Schuman, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Rozhek v. Winiarski

Defendant's Motion to Dismiss Challenged Complaint's Timeliness

A claim that the two-year statute of limitations in Connecticut General Statutes §52-584 bars a complaint filed after the Probate Court appointed an administrator to handle the original defendant's estate does not implicate jurisdiction and cannot be raised in a motion to dismiss.

CV15-6060605
Noble, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Torts, Personal Injury, Motor Vehicles

United States District Court

3081 Main St. v. Nat'l Bus. Capital

Class-Action Counsel Won $75,000 in TCPA Suit

In a class-action case brought under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, a court can award legal fees to class counsel.

3:12cv531
Meyer, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Civil Procedure, Class Actions, Consumer Protection

United States District Court

United States v. Perrotti

Supervisor Allegedly Took Municipal Parts for Private Use

A municipal supervisor who allegedly orders parts for a municipality and uses them at his private electrical company can be found guilty of fraud.

3:14cr215
Meyer, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, White Collar Crime

United States District Court

Jones v. Forbes

Plaintiff Requested Double Damages if he Passed Lie Detector

A court can deny as inappropriate a plaintiff's request for double damages, if he passes a lie detector test concerning his claim he was sexually assaulted.

3:15cv613
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Health Law, Civil Procedure, Provisional Remedies

United States District Court

McQuennie v. Carpenters Local Union 429

Pro Se Alleged He Lacked Ability To Litigate in California

Venue can be found proper in the state in which plaintiff resides and expects to receive pension benefits, because breach of a contract takes place where the contract is to be performed.

3:15cv432
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Venue, Labor and Employment, Employee Benefits, Pensions and Other Retirement Benefits

United States District Court

Dykeman v. Davidson Co.

Worker Who Filed Late Complaint Not Entitled To Equitable Tolling

To obtain equitable tolling of the 90-day period in which to file an employment discrimination complaint, following release of jurisdiction by the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission, a worker must allege that she acted with reasonable diligence and that the circumstances that caused delay were extraordinary.

3:15cv970
Meyer, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Labor and Employment, Discrimination

United States District Court

Anderson v. Rehmer

Medical Records of Inmate Who Allegedly Cut Wrist Sealed

A court can find that good cause exists to seal medical records of an inmate who allegedly cut his wrist and that sealing is narrowly tailored to serve reasons that are clear and compelling.

3:15cv542
Bolden, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Health Law

United States Bankruptcy Court

In Re: Thornton & Co.

Debtor Intends to Pay Back $20 Million Owed to People's Bank

A debtor that intends to liquidate its assets and to pay back one creditor is not acting in the ordinary course of business and must obtain Bankruptcy Court approval before continuing with inventory sales, pursuant to 11 United States Code §363(b)(1).

15-21416
Nevins, J.

Practice Areas: Bankruptcy, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

United States Bankruptcy Court

In Re: Peburn; Bromberger v. Peburn

Obstructive Debtor Not Entitled to Chapter 11 Bankruptcy

A sophisticated debtor who allegedly is obstructive and evasive may not be entitled to Chapter 11 bankruptcy relief.

08-3003; 08-3004
Dabrowski, J.

Practice Areas: Bankruptcy, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

Connecticut Appellate Court

Carriage House I v. Johnston

Owner Did Not Prove Contract Was Unenforceable and Illegal

A condominium association can foreclose, if a unit owner breaches a contract and refuses to pay a fine owed to the condo association.

AC 36997
Keller, J.

Practice Areas: Residential and Commercial Real Estate, Contracts, Breach, Land Use and Planning

Connecticut Appellate Court

Bridgeport Bd. of Educ. v. Nage, Local RI-200

Reinstatement of Custodian Who Threatened Reversed

Reinstatement of a school maintenance worker who allegedly made an implied threat to murder students and co-workers, if he did not have his demands met, violated the public policy of the State of Connecticut.

AC 36092
Pellegrino, J.

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Arbitration (ADR), Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements, Hiring/Firing

Connecticut Appellate Court

State v. Prosper

Victim's Testimony about Rape Was Sufficient to Convict

The testimony of even a single witness can be sufficient to sustain a defendant's conviction.

AC 35943
Norcott, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Evidence, Witnesses

Connecticut Appellate Court

Davis v. Comm'r of Correction

Petitioner Alleged Counsel Lacked Education about Eyewitness I.D.s

The Appellate Court will not review claims not raised in a habeas petition or decided by the habeas court.

AC 36364
Mullins, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Evidence, Witnesses

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Anderson

Court Voted 4 to 3 that Right to Bail Was Not Violated

A psychiatric acquittee who is unable to post bond, after he allegedly commits assaults on patients and workers, can be transferred to the custody of the Department of Correction without violating his right to bail under Article First, §8 of the Connecticut Constitution.

SC 19399
Zarella, J.

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Criminal Law

Department of Energy and Environmental Protection

Matter of: Wright

Allegedly, Underaged Operator Refused To Take Breathalyzer Test

The Department of Energy and Environmental Protection can suspend the boating license of an underage drinker who allegedly operates a vessel after consuming beer.

15-010
Schain, Hearing Officer

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

City of Stamford and UE Loc. 222, CILU, Local 82

Arbitrators Concluded 3-Day Suspension Was Overly Harsh

Arbitrators can find that a three-day suspension is overly harsh and reduce the suspension to one day.

2015-A-0004
Krzywicki, Diaz and Mandell

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Arbitration (ADR), Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

City of New Haven and AFSCME, Council 4, Local 884

Request to Take a Floating Holiday on Snow Day Denied

If the parties agree that employees may take a floating holiday "at the employee's discretion," an employer may not be allowed to deny a worker's request to take a floating holiday on a snow day.

2014-A-0478
O'Connell, Hampton and Shay

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Arbitration (ADR), Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements, Wages and Hours

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

City of New Haven and AFSCME, Council 4, Local 884

Request to Take a Floating Holiday on Black Friday Denied

Even if the collective bargaining contract allows workers to take floating holidays "at their discretion," an employer can deny requests for floating holidays in order to maintain minimum staffing.

2014-A-0522
Halperin and Culhane – Neary dissented

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Arbitration (ADR), Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements, Wages and Hours

Board of Mediation and Arbitration

City of Middletown and UPSEU/C.O.P.S.

Personnel Rules Not Part of Collective Bargaining Contract

Personnel rules that do not constitute part of a collective bargaining contract cannot be considered when making a decision about a grievance.

2015-A-0266
Krzywicki, Diaz and Ryan

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Alternative Dispute Resolution, Arbitration (ADR), Labor and Employment, Labor Law, Collective Bargaining Agreements, Wages and Hours

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Glenn

Defendant with 19 Prior Convictions Protested Sentence

The district court can issue an above-guidelines sentence to a defendant with 19 prior convictions.

14-3750-cr

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Zullo v. Issifou

$101,388 Award Failed to Shock Court's Conscience

Absent evidence of partiality, mistake or corruption, a court can affirm an award for medical expenses and pain and suffering that allegedly results from a motor-vehicle accident.

CV12-6034584
Burke, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Personal Injury, Motor Vehicles

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Lovejoy v. Smart

Damages for Alleged Forgery and Theft by Trustee Trebled

If a plaintiff proves statutory theft, damages can be trebled.

CV12-6028975
Burke, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Intentional Torts, Conversion, Trusts and Estates

New Haven J.D., at New Haven

Garcia v. Adm'r, Unemployment Compensation Act

Worker Who Threw Broom Not Eligible for Unemployment Benefit

A worker who allegedly throws a broom across his employer's work shop to protest unsafe workplace conditions engages in willful misconduct and is not eligible for unemployment benefits.

CV15-5035512
Alander, J.

Practice Areas: Social Services Law, Unemployment Compensation, Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing

New London J.D., at New London

Carter v. City of New London

Employer Proved Job Candidate Engaged in Fraudulent Inducement

Fraud in the inducement to enter into a contract can constitute an equitable defense.

CV14-6022709
Vacchelli, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Contracts, Breach, Torts, Intentional Torts, Fraud (Torts)

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

United States Life Ins. v. Marshall

First Wife Seeks Proceeds of Entire $1 Million Policy

A court can award the decedent's first spouse money to compensate that spouse for unpaid alimony, before it uses equitable principles to distribute the remainder of a $1 million life insurance policy.

CV14-6023619
Lee, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Wutzel-Frey v. Frey

Wife's Request To Restrict Husband's Facebook Posts Denied

Although a court can deny a request for a broad order to restrict a former spouse's online speech, because that would constitute an impermissible prior restraint on speech, the court can bar the distribution of information that "portrays the other parent in a negative light."

FA14-4072788
Shluger, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support, Constitutional Law, Communications and Media Law

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Jefferson v. Comm'r of Motor Vehicles

Driver Claimed He Did Not Refuse To Take Breathalyzer Test

A driver's conduct can indicate that he refuses to take a breathalyzer test, even if the driver does not orally express refusal.

CV15-6028693
Schuman, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Santa Buckley Energy v. 9 E. Corp.

Energy Company Did Not Prove that Restaurant Signed Contract

A plaintiff who fails to prove that a corporate defendant or its agents or employees signed a contract may be able to recover for the amount of services provided.

CV15-6048451
Thim, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Contracts, Breach

United States District Court

Cipriani v. Colvin

27 Hours of Fees Approved in Social Security Disability Case

A plaintiff who qualifies as a "prevailing party" under the Equal Access to Justice Act can be entitled to attorney fees, which can include compensation for 20 to 40 hours of legal work in a Social Security disabilities case and two hours of legal work to prepare the attorney fees petition.

3:14cv1343
Merriam, J.

Practice Areas: Legal Profession, Attorney Fee Recovery, Social Services Law, Social Security Compensation

United States District Court

Thurston Foods v. Wausau Bus. Ins.

Plaintiff Alleged Practice of Unfair Claims Settlement

Allegations that defendant insurer engaged in a general practice of unfair claims settlement can be sufficient to state a claim for violation of the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act, even if the other complainants were homeowners, and plaintiff is a commercial business.

3:15cv14
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Insurance Law, Consumer Protection

United States District Court

Wells Fargo Bank v. Stephens

Native Americans Alleged that Foreclosure Was Racially Biased

Conclusory allegations that the administration of a foreclosure was racially biased can be insufficient to establish federal question jurisdiction.

3:14cv1982
Bryant, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Jurisdiction and Service of Process, Creditors’ and Debtors’ Rights

United States District Court

Hewett v. Triple Point Tech.

Pro Se Allegedly Filed 55 Docs that Attacked Defense Counsel

A court can sanction a pro se litigant who allegedly uses the grievance procedure and the public court docket as a means to embarrass and bully defendant into settlement.

3:13cv1382
Underhill, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Motion Practice, Legal Profession

Connecticut Appellate Court

Folsom v. Zoning Bd. of Appeals of the City of Milford

Municipal ZEO and ZBA Entitled to Government Immunity

A zoning enforcement officer and a zoning board of appeals can be entitled to government immunity for conduct that requires the exercise of discretion.

AC 36390
Lavery, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Appellate Court

347 Humphrey St. v. Bd. of Zoning Appeals of the City of New Haven

Lack of Accessibility to Disabled Not a Cognizable Hardship

The fact that a business is not as accessible as possible to individuals who are disabled does not constitute a legally cognizable hardship, as required so that the business can obtain a variance.

AC 36186
Bishop, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Connecticut Appellate Court

Wood v. Wood

Husband Protested Order To Pay $750,000 Lump Sum

A trial court possesses discretion to award one party the vast majority of marital property and to order that party to pay the other a lump sum distribution.

AC 36307
DuPont, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Connecticut Appellate Court

State v. Davis

Drunk Driver Sought To Bribe Witness To Not Report Accident

Evidence that defendant, who was concerned that he would be arrested if police were contacted, offered money to keep another driver from reporting his motor-vehicle accident, can be sufficient to establish bribery.

AC 36476
Gruendel, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Flores

Court Divided 4 to 3 on Probable Cause to Issue Search Warrant

A judge can reasonably credit information as reliable and supportive of a finding of probable cause to issue a search warrant, if a named informant provides a statement against his penal interest.

SC 19207
McDonald, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Evidence

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Apt

Erased Records Cannot Be Used To Enhance Sentence

The state can be barred from utilizing erased criminal records to enhance a criminal defendant's sentence.

SC 19266
Palmer, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

State v. Santiago

Former Death Row Inmate Sentenced To Life in Prison

Capital punishment no longer passes constitutional muster in Connecticut, because it does not comport with contemporary standards of decency.

SC 17413
Palmer, J.

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Criminal Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Wendy v. Santiago

Request for Full Hearing on Restraining Order Is Moot

An actual controversy must exist not only at the time that the appeal is filed but also during the pendency of the appeal.

SC 19502 and SC 19514
Rogers, C.J.

Practice Areas: Appellate Law - Civil, Constitutional Law, Family Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

In Re: Yasiel

Supreme Court Used Supervisory Authority to Reverse Judgment

The Connecticut Supreme Court can use supervisory authority to reverse the judgment of the Connecticut Appellate Court.

SC 19372
Per Curiam

Practice Areas: Appellate Law - Civil, Family Law, Custody and Child Support

Freedom of Information Commission

Smith v. Cook

Item on Board's Agenda Was Not Descriptive Enough

An agenda that indicates that a "personnel matter" might be discussed in executive session is not descriptive enough to inform the public about the subject of the meeting.

FIC 2014-833
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Labor and Employment

Freedom of Information Commission

Lovejoy v. Tax Assessor, Town of Easton

Tax Assessor Did Not Comply Promptly with Attorney's Request

Public agencies that receive requests for public records are required to comply promptly upon request, unless the document is exempt from disclosure.

FIC 2015-119
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Krayeske v. President, Court of Common Council

Court of Common Council Met Regardless of Forecasted Blizzard

It does not violate the Freedom of Information Act, if a public agency that provides notice and an agenda of a meeting decides to hold the meeting, even though the National Weather Service has issued a blizzard warning.

FIC 2015-076
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Dumas v. Kubic

Town Council Met in Executive Session To Discuss Property Sale

It can violate the "open meeting" provision of the Freedom of Information Act, if a municipal town council meets in executive session to discuss a property sale, although no evidence exists that discussing the property sale during the open portion of the meeting will adversely affect price.

FIC 2015-079
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Freedom of Information Commission

Dacey v. Dunsby

Cellular Research Committee Was Not an Official Subcommittee

An informal, self-created citizen's group does not qualify as an official subcommittee that is required to comply with agenda and public notice provisions in the Freedom of Information Act.

FIC 2014-882
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Freedom of Information Commission

Cohen v. Chief Operating Officer, City of Hartford

City Wrongly Denied WNPR's Request for Baseball Contract

Connecticut General Statutes §1-210(b)(24) only exempts compliance with requests for proposals or bid solicitations until the contract is signed or negotiations end.

FIC 2015-107
Freedom of Information Commission

Practice Areas: Administrative Law

Fairfield J.D., at Bridgeport

Encalada v. Quest Diagnostics

Plaintiff Awarded $140,000 for Alleged Quest Diagnostics Injury

A court can deny a request for an additur and conclude that a jury reasonably could have found that a plaintiff who missed only a few days from work did not prove that he was as severely injured as claimed.

CV12-6026708
Rush, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Torts, Damages, Personal Injury, Health Law, Medical Malpractice

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Blue v. Dye House Assoc.

Estates Allege Landlord Did Not Adequately Protect Decedents

Allegations that a dangerous individual resided at or visited the landlord's property at the same time that plaintiffs' decedents resided at or visited the property may be insufficient to prove that a special relationship of custody and control existed that required the landlord to protect plaintiffs' decedents.

CV14-6055943
Sheridan, J.

Practice Areas: Torts, Wrongful Death, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Bushnell Tower Condominium Assn. v. Hartford Planning & Zoning Comm'n

Relocation of Hartford's Gold Street Protested by Neighbors

Plaintiffs possess standing as "affected" owners of land, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §8-29, if official plans to relocate a city street indicate that a fence will be installed on plaintiffs' property.

CV15-6058094
Berger, J.

Practice Areas: Land Use and Planning, Residential and Commercial Real Estate, Civil Procedure, Standing

Hartford J.D., at Hartford (Housing Session)

Lumani v. Sanchez

Construction Foreman Lacked Authority To Lease Property

A court can find that a construction foreman lacks apparent or actual authority to lease premises, without the permission or knowledge of the landlord.

NBSP-64646
Rubinow, J.

Practice Areas: Landlord/Tenant Law, Residential and Commercial Real Estate

Hartford J.D., at Hartford

Doe v. Sotil Tree Serv.

HIV-Positive Plaintiff Failed To Prove Violation of Privacy

A plaintiff who allegedly informs family and co-workers about his medical condition may not prove invasion of privacy.

CV12-6033913
Huddleston, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Wages and Hours, Torts

New Britain J.D., at New Britain

Valente v. Comm'r of Motor Vehicles

Driver Refused Breathalyzer Test until His Attorney Arrived

A driver who is arrested for driving under the influence and who refuses to take a breathalyzer test until his attorney arrives can have his driver's license suspended six months for refusal to take the test.

CV15-6029369
Schuman, J.

Practice Areas: Criminal Law

Stamford/Norwalk J.D., at Stamford

Consoli v. Basaran

Defendant Defaulted for Alleged Abuse of Discovery

A court can default a defendant who allegedly violates clear court orders and abuses the discovery process.

CV13-5014155
Mottolese, J.T.R.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Discovery, Provisional Remedies

United States District Court

Payne v. PSC Indus. Outsourcing

Worker Alleged Employer Took Away his Reasonable Accommodation

Allegations that a worker with a heart condition worked without incident for two years can raise a strong inference that reasonable accommodations were available when co-workers allegedly ridiculed him and his employer allegedly took away his reasonable accommodation.

3:13cv355
Bryant, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Disability Discrimination

United States District Court

McLeod v. RBS Sec.

Isolated Uses of "N" Word Were Insufficient To Prove Discrim

A court can find that isolated uses of the "N" word were insufficient to prove hostile-work environment.

3:12cv1596
Chatigny, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Race Discrimination

United States District Court

Azcona v. Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart Worker Adequately Alleged Constructive Discharge

Allegations that managers or co-workers barred a deaf employee from typing out messages on his phone, pointed at him, moved their mouths to simulate talking without saying any words, deducted money from his paycheck when he used company cleaning supplies for work-related purposes and prevented the deaf employee from leaving the premises on work breaks can be sufficient to state a claim for constructive discharge.

3:15cv96
Chatigny, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Disability Discrimination

United States District Court

Johnson v. Perry

Basketball Father Claimed School Ban Violated Due Process

The state may not ban a parent from school activities and events without furnishing the parent an opportunity to dispute the state's rationale.

3:13cv1531
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Education Law

United States District Court

Sepulveda v. Stop & Shop Supermarket

Manager Alleged Store Refused To Provide Reasonable Accommodation

Unless the continuing violations doctrine is applicable to an ADA complainant, any claims that accrued 300 days prior to the date that plaintiff filed a claim with the Connecticut Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities can be barred as untimely.

3:14cv191
Eginton, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Statute of Limitations, Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Discrimination, Disability Discrimination

United States District Court

Ghawi v. Law Offices Howard Lee Schiff

Pro Se's Second Objection To Summary Judgment Was Late

When a pro se party files two objections to a motion for summary judgment, and the second objection is filed late, a court can strike the second objection.

3:13cv115
Arterton, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Motion Practice, Banking and Financial Institutions, Consumer Protection

Connecticut Appellate Court

Anderson v. Anderson

Tax Analyst Claimed Trial Court Should Have Awarded Alimony

A party who is fully employed and owns real estate, a motor vehicle and a retirement account may not be entitled to rehabilitative alimony.

AC 36338
Schaller, J.

Practice Areas: Family Law

Connecticut Appellate Court

Santos v. Massad-Zion Motor Sales

Precise Terms of Settlement with Employer Were Ambiguous

A court can find that even if the parties agree to the amount of settlement and that a nondisparagement and nondisclosure contract will be signed, that the precise terms of the contract are ambiguous.

AC 36986
Beach, J.

Practice Areas: Contracts, Breach, Labor and Employment, Wages and Hours

Connecticut Appellate Court

Petaway v. Comm'r of Correction

Inmate Protested 2013 Change To 'Good Time' Credit

An amendment to a law that allowed "good time" credit did not qualify as Ex Post Facto legislation, because it did not extend the length of petitioner's incarceration or delay the date of his first eligibility for parole, beyond the time that existed in 2003, when petitioner allegedly committed a robbery.

AC 36772
Bishop, J.

Practice Areas: Constitutional Law, Criminal Law

Connecticut Appellate Court

Valencis v. Nyberg

Court Properly Granted $1.5 Million Prejudgment Remedy

A court can grant a prejudgment remedy, if probable cause exists that judgment in the amount of the prejudgment remedy requested will be issued on the merits, after taking into account any defenses, counterclaims or setoffs.

AC 36320
Schaller, J.

Practice Areas: Civil Procedure, Provisional Remedies, Contracts, Breach

Connecticut Supreme Court

Trusz v. UBS Realty Investors

Internal Whistleblower's Claim under C.G.S. §31-51q Survived

Employee speech pursuant to official job duties on matters of significant public interest can be protected from employer discipline in the private workplace, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §31-51q.

SC 19323
Palmer, J.

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Whistle-blower Law, Constitutional Law

Connecticut Supreme Court

Filippelli v. Saint Mary's Hosp.

Trial Court Properly Restricted Cross-Exam of Defense Expert

A trial court possesses the discretion to prevent a plaintiff from questioning a defense expert about whether he previously testified on behalf of defendant doctor, if the expert's relationship to defendant is not pertinent to whether defendant doctor failed to timely diagnose and treat plaintiff.

SC 19148
Palmer, J.

Practice Areas: Evidence, Witnesses, Health Law, Medical Malpractice

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Reichle

Town Attorney Cannot Also Serve on Municipal Board of Finance

A member of a municipal board of finance may not also hold a salaried town office, such as town attorney, unless otherwise provided by special act, pursuant to Connecticut General Statutes §9-210.

2015-008
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Murphy

Superintendent Requested that Parents Support Budget

Use of state or municipal funds to influence a person to vote to approve a budget referendum can violate Connecticut General Statutes §9-369b.

2015-033
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Mayo

Registrar Did Not Provide Printed Voter List to Candidate

A registrar of voters who only provides a voter registry list in electronic form and who does not provide a printed copy to a candidate for mayor can violate Connecticut General Statutes §9-55.

2015-005
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Carr

Use of Word 'Recommended' Did Not Constitute Advocacy

Use of the word "recommended" in a municipal budget guide may not constitute advocacy, in violation of Connecticut General Statutes §9-369b.

2015-032
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Book

Candidate's Treasurer Was Not a Connecticut Elector

Connecticut General Statutes §9-606 provides, "No person shall act as a treasurer or deputy treasurer (1) unless the person is an elector of this state."

2014-002
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

State Elections Enforcement Commission

Complaint by: Billing

Ad That Featured Candidate Was Not a Campaign 'Expenditure'

A commercial advertisement that refers to the owner of a business entity who is running for public office may not qualify as a campaign "expenditure" under Connecticut General Statutes §9-601b(b)(9), if the commercial advertisement previously was used when the business owner was not a candidate.

2014-140
Castagno, Chair

Practice Areas: Administrative Law, Election and Political Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Three D v. Nat'l Labor Relations Bd.

Sports Bar Workers Who Posted on Facebook Protected by NLRA

Employees who post comments on Facebook to obtain support from one another and whose comments are not disloyal or defamatory can be protected under the National Labor Relations Act.

14-3284, 14-3814

Practice Areas: Labor and Employment, Hiring/Firing, Labor Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

United States v. Smith

Defendant Appealed Denial of Motion To Suppress Wiretap

Incomplete disclosure of wiretap evidence can create information asymmetries between government and defendant.

14-2801-cr

Practice Areas: Criminal Law, Evidence

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Lewis v. Swicki

Inmate Alleged Failure To Prevent Stabbing Violated Eighth Amendment

A corrections officer acts with culpable intent, if he knows that an inmate faces a substantial risk of serious harm and he fails to take reasonable measure to abate that harm.

13-4626

Practice Areas: Civil Rights, Constitutional Law, Criminal Law

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

Munn v. The Hotchkiss Sch.

Supreme Court to Decide if Public Policy Supports $41Million Award

The Second Circuit can certify a case to the Connecticut Supreme Court for decision, if no controlling decision from the appellate court, constitutional provision or statute exists.

14-2410-cv
Walker, J.

Practice Areas: Appellate Law - Civil, Torts, Damages, Education Law