Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Supreme Court case announcements, 10/26/16

The Court has accepted two new cases for review.

When is a hospital employee acting within the scope of employment?

If a hospital employee accesses a patient medical record for a reason having nothing to do with treatment of the patient and then unlawfully discloses that information, is the hospital liable for the employee's actions? No, says the First District.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Does Dendrite International apply in Ohio?

What standard must a court apply when a plaintiff seeks to use the subpoena power of the court to identify an anonymous speaker on the internet? There is not yet a consensus to this important question in Ohio, but earlier this week the First District--my home district, filled with good judges with whom I very rarely disagree--bucked the national trend by declining to apply the standard from Dendrite International v. Doe. In my opinion this case was wrongly decided, and does not adequately protect the constitutional right to anonymous speech. This is a subject in which I'm very interested; see here for video of my participation in a panel last week at the Ohio State Bar Association's Law and Media Conference.

Update: we have filed an amicus brief in support of Doe's jurisdictional appeal to the Ohio Supreme Court.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

"Replevin action regarding parrot"

In Carlton v. Johnson, the Fifth District affirmed a trial court's judgment that the plaintiff was not entitled to replevin of a parrot.

The Supreme Court Reporter of Decisions describes the issues of the case as "Replevin action regarding parrot/Manifest weight."

That is all.

No stay in criminal contempt case

In today's case announcements, the Court denied a motion to stay imposition of a five-day sentence for indirect criminal contempt. The contemnor, Crysta Pleatman, had raised due process and First Amendment defenses to the contempt charge, both of which were rejected by both the trial court and the First District.

Monday, October 17, 2016

A face only a mother could love

Fans of law-of-the-case and scope-of-the-appellate-mandate doctrines may want to check out the Second District's decision in LG Harris Family Limited Partnership v. 905 S. Main Street. The rest of you? Eh--move along.

Ohio Supreme Court stays judgment allowing pipeline appropriation

My habit for many years, dating back to my trial-court clerking days, is to check for newly released appellate opinions at about ten o'clock every morning. There obviously are days that I can't do this; sometimes I'm in hearings, sometimes I'm with clients, etc. When this happens I usually just catch up the next day or next week. But now for the first time I've had the unhappy experience of being unable to check for new opinions because I was in trial, and having one of those opinions actually relate to the trial that was in progress.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Arbitration award vacated due to "evident partiality" of the arbitrator

Bear with me as I catch up on decisions announced over the last week, as I was in trial.

The Twelfth District in City of Mason v. Mason Professional Firefighters IAFF Local 4049 has vacated an arbitration award in favor of the union due to the "evident partiality" of the arbitrator, based on the arbitrator's role as executive director of a union-advocacy group.