The mission of the Connecticut Judicial Branch is to serve the interests of justice and the public by resolving matters brought before it in a fair, timely, efficient and open manner.

Property Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=730

SC19693 - Wellswood Columbia, LLC v. Hebron ("In Wellswood Columbia, LLC v. Hebron, 295 Conn. 802, 804–805, 825, 992 A.2d 1120 (2010) (Wellswood I), this court reversed the judgment of the trial court, which denied the application of the plaintiffs, Wellswood Columbia, LLC (Wellswood), and its managing partner, Ronald Jacques, for a permanent injunction barring the defendant, the town of Hebron (town), from closing a road that provided the sole existing access to a property that Wellswood owned in the adjoining town of Columbia. Shortly after the trial court issued the injunction upon remand from this court, the plaintiffs commenced the present action against the town seeking damages for, inter alia, a temporary taking, temporary nuisance and tortious interference with the plaintiffs' business expectancies. The trial court, Elgo, J., granted the town's motion for summary judgment on the ground that the plaintiffs' claims were barred by the doctrine of res judicata because they arose out of the same operative facts as the plaintiffs' claim for injunctive relief and, therefore, should have been brought in Wellswood I. On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the trial court incorrectly determined that their claims in the present action are barred by the principles of res judicata. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Connecticut Law Journal - October 31, 2017

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=729




Foreclosure Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=726

AC39219 - U.S. Bank National Assn., Trustee v. Blowers ("In this mortgage foreclosure action, the defendant Mitchell Piper, appeals from the judgment of strict foreclosure rendered by the trial court in favor of the plaintiff, U.S. Bank National Association, as Trustee for the Holders of the First Franklin Mortgage Loan Trust Mortgage Pass-Through Certificates, Series 2005-FF10. On appeal, Piper claims that the court improperly granted the plaintiff’s motion to strike the defendants’ special defenses and counterclaims. Specifically, he contends that the court improperly required the special defenses to directly relate to and the counterclaims to have a sufficient nexus to the making, validity, or enforcement of the note and mortgage. Instead, Piper argues, the court should have applied a ‘straightforward version of the transaction test with allowances for equitable considerations’ to both the special defenses and counterclaims. Additionally, Piper claims that even if the court did not err in applying the making, validity, or enforcement requirement, the counterclaims and special defenses should have survived a motion to strike under a broad reading of the term ‘enforcement.’ Finally, Piper claims that the court erred in its determinations that no binding modification to the defendants’ loan existed, that, if such modification existed, the defendants defaulted on the loan, and that all of the plaintiff’s alleged misconduct took place during foreclosure mediation. We disagree with Piper contentions and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=725

AC38646 - Emerick v. Glastonbury (Private nuisance; "In the present case, the self-represented plaintiff, Roger Emerick, appeals from the judgment of the trial court dismissing his case against the defendant, the town of Glastonbury, as a sanction for his actions during trial. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the dismissal constituted reversible error. We are not persuaded that the court abused its discretion in dismissing the plaintiff's case after his deliberate, continuing, and at times contumacious disregard for the court's authority. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Family Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=723

AC38050 - Spencer v. Spencer ("The plaintiff, Brenna M. Spencer, appeals from the judgment of the trial court denying her motions for contempt and granting the motion for modification and termination of alimony filed by the defendant, Robert B. Spencer. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the trial court erred in (1) terminating alimony on the basis of her cohabitation, (2) modifying alimony on the basis of a substantial change in the defendant’s financial circumstances, and (3) denying her motion for contempt. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC38865 - Ray v. Ray ("The plaintiff, Deepali Ray, appeals from the judgment of the trial court granting the postjudgment motion brought by the defendant, Surajit D. Ray, for an order establishing his child support obligation to the plaintiff in accordance with the state’s child support and arrearage guidelines (guidelines), Regs. Conn. State Agencies § 46b-215a-1 et seq. The plaintiff also appeals from the judgment of the trial court, rendered after argument, denying the relief requested in her postjudgment motion for reargument and reconsideration. The defendant sought an order establishing his child support obligation when, pursuant to the judgment of dissolution rendered on August 11, 2008, his unallocated alimony and child support obligation had terminated. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court erred by (1) establishing the defendant’s child support obligation without making a finding as to his net income, (2) making findings as to the parties’ gross and net incomes based upon an unsworn child support guidelines worksheet (guidelines worksheet) prepared by a family relations officer where the information on the guidelines worksheet was contrary to the evidence, and (3) failing to take into account the defendant’s income in excess of his base salary when it determined his child support obligation. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC38407 - Garvey v. Valencis ("The plaintiff, Denise A. Garvey, appeals from the judgment of the trial court sustaining the emergency ex parte custody order entered pursuant to General Statutes § 46b-56f denying the plaintiff visitation with the parties’ child. The order was entered pursuant to the application of the defendant, Stanley M. Valencis. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that: (1) the court improperly entered and extended the emergency ex parte custody order in violation of § 46b-56f, Practice Book § 4-5, and the plaintiff’s constitutional right to due process, and (2) there was insufficient evidence to conclude, as the court did, that the incident giving rise to the emergency ex parte order constituted an immediate and present risk of psychological harm to the child. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC37473 - Bruno v. Bruno ("This appeal arises out of several postjudgment orders following the judgment of the trial court dissolving the parties’ marriage. On appeal, the defendant, Lisa Bruno, claims that the court erred in (1) vacating prior awards of postjudgment interest on remand from this court, (2) employing an incorrect time frame and improper rate in calculating subsequent awards of postjudgment interest, and (3) finding her in contempt for failure to follow a court order. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")



Criminal Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=722

AC37912 - State v. Lopez (Operating motor vehicle while under influence of alcohol in violation of statute (§ 14-227a [a] [1]); operating motor vehicle while license suspended; "The defendant, Juan C. Lopez, appeals from the judgment of conviction, rendered after a jury trial, of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol in violation of General Statutes § 14-227a (a) (1) and operating a motor vehicle while his license was suspended in violation of General Statutes § 14-215. On appeal, the defendant claims, among other things, that the trial court improperly (1) restricted his cross-examination of the state's expert witness and (2) admitted an "incomplete and altered" dashboard camera video taken from the arresting officer's patrol car. With respect to the first claim, we agree with the defendant that the court improperly restricted his cross-examination of the expert witness and that that impropriety was harmful. We thus reverse the judgment and remand the case for a new trial.")




Connecticut Law Journal - October 24, 2017

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=719



Administrative Appeal Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=717

AC39418Fernschild v. Commissioner of Motor Vehicles ("The plaintiff, Matthew Fernschild, appeals from the judgment of the Superior Court dismissing his appeal from the decision of the defendant, the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles (commissioner), ordering a six month suspension of his license to operate a motor vehicle, pursuant to General Statutes § 14-227b, for his refusal to submit to a chemical alcohol test. The plaintiff claims that the trial court improperly concluded that there was substantial evidence in the record to support the finding of the hearing officer that the plaintiff refused to submit to a chemical analysis of his breath. We agree and reverse the judgment of the trial court.")


Tort Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=714

AC38608McLeod v. A Better Way Wholesale Autos, Inc. (Fraud; "In this action for damages arising out of the purchase of a used automobile, the defendant, A Better Way Wholesale Autos, Inc., appeals, following a trial to the court, from the judgment rendered in favor of the plaintiff, Brenda McLeod, on counts one through four of her six count complaint. Counts one through four alleged, respectively, that the defendant breached the implied warranty of merchantability, violated the Magnuson-Moss Warranty-Federal Trade Commission Improvement Act (Magnuson-Moss Act), 15 U.S.C. § 2301 et seq., breached an express statutory warranty, and committed common-law fraud. In total, the court awarded the plaintiff $5435 in actual damages, $15,000 in punitive damages, and $7045.35 in attorney's fees. The defendant claims on appeal that the court improperly (1) determined that the defendant had breached the implied warranty of merchantability as alleged in count one because that count previously had been dismissed along with counts five and six at the close of the plaintiff's case-in-chief pursuant to Practice Book § 15-8; (2) determined that the defendant had violated 15 U.S.C. § 2310 (d) of the Magnuson-Moss Act, despite the plaintiff's having pleaded that the alleged violation arose from the defendant's breach of the implied warranty of merchantability as alleged in count one, which the court had dismissed because the plaintiff had failed to establish a prima facie case; (3) awarded the plaintiff attorney's fees; (4) determined that the defendant committed common-law fraud without clear and convincing evidence of either a false statement or intent to defraud; and (5) awarded the plaintiff punitive damages on the fraud count. We agree with the defendant as to all but the fourth claim and, accordingly, reverse in part the judgment of the court and remand the case with direction to render judgment in accordance with this opinion and for a new hearing in damages. We otherwise affirm the court's judgment.")



Habeas Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=715

AC38410Darryl W. v. Commissioner of Correction (“On appeal, the petitioner claims that the habeas court improperly denied his amended petition because the record established that his criminal trial counsel had rendered ineffective assistance by (1) failing to file a request to charge the jury and/or to object to the trial court’s jury instruction and (2) failing to direct the trial court in its response to the jury’s inquiry on operability. We conclude that the habeas court properly determined that the petitioner failed to establish his claim of ineffective assistance of counsel in that he failed to establish that he was prejudiced by counsel’s failure to file a request to charge the jury and/or to object to the jury instruction and that counsel performed deficiently by failing to direct the trial court in its response to the jury’s inquiry. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the habeas court.”)

AC38415Toccaline v. Commissioner of Correction (Third petition for writ of habeas corpus; “He appeals following the habeas court’s denial of his petition for certification to appeal from the judgment of the habeas court granting the motion to dismiss filed by the respondent, the Commissioner of Correction. He claims that the habeas court abused its discretion by denying his petition for certification to appeal and improperly dismissed four counts of his third amended petition. We dismiss the appeal.”)


Juvenile Law Supreme Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=713

SC19902 Order on Motion- In Re Elianah T.-T. ("Following the release of our decision in In re Elianah T.-T., 326 Conn. 614, 165 A.3d 1236 (2017), in which this court concluded that General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) did not authorize the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families (commissioner), to vaccinate a child placed in her temporary custody over the objection of that child's parents, the commissioner moved for reconsideration pursuant to Practice Book § 71-5. In this motion for reconsideration, the commissioner states that, in briefing this case, she should have claimed that General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) should be interpreted in the context of General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98. Specifically, the commissioner contends that the operation of General Statutes § 17a-10 (c) is limited to custody over juveniles who have been adjudicated delinquent, and that General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98 confer broader guardianship authority that permits her to vaccinate minor children in her custody. The commissioner candidly acknowledges that she did not advance her arguments concerning the effect of General Statutes §§ 17a-93 and 17a-98 until the filing of this motion for reconsideration. As this argument was not previously advanced to this court, we grant the motion for reconsideration, but deny the relief requested.")


Connecticut Law Journal - October 17, 2017

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=712


New Office of Legislative Research Reports

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://www.jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=711

The Office of Legislative Research has recently published the following reports:

Recanvass of the Vote After a Municipal Primary or Election - 2017-R-0231
This report summarizes the circumstances under which a recanvass occurs after a municipal primary or election, the related requirements and procedures, and the involved candidates' rights.

Gubernatorial Line Item Veto Power in Connecticut - 2017-R-0230
This report explains the governor's line item veto power in Connecticut, including how the governor exercises it and its application to tax provisions and appropriation reductions.

Legislative Changes to Sex Offender Registration Laws, 2008-2017 - 2017-R-0197
This report summarizes legislative changes to Connecticut's sex offender registration laws and related issues over the last 10 years.

Community Health Workers - 2017-R-0175
This report provides a brief description of community health workers and how they are regulated in Connecticut and other states.


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