Willamette Law Online

Oregon Supreme Court

2014

( 6 summaries )

January

Blachana, LLC v. Bureau of Labor and Industries

Labor Law: Under ORS 652.414(3) and ORS 652.301(1), the correct test to determine a “successor employee” for the purpose of Wage Security Fund reimbursement is whether it conducts essentially the same business as conducted by its predecessor, using a nonexclusive list of factors set out by the Bureau of Labor and Industries to determine whether a company conducts “essentially the same business.”

(Filing Date: 01-16-2014)

In re McCarthy

Professional Responsibility: A 90-day suspension from the practice of law is an appropriate sanction for an attorney who has been found to have knowingly violated RPC 1.1, RPC 1.4(a), RPC 1.4(b), RPC 1.15-1(c).

(Filing Date: 01-16-2014)

Moro v. State of Oregon

Constitutional Law: Based on the rule of necessity, a judge may participate in decision making pertaining to the Public Employee Retirement System (PERS) despite having a substantial economic interest therein.

(Filing Date: 01-16-2014)

McCann/Harmon v. Rosenblum

Ballot Titles: Under ORS 250.035, a ballot title must include a caption, results statements, and summery which adequately describe the effects of voting one way or another, and reasonably identify the subject matter. Where more specific language is available, it should be used to describe the ballot title in a simple and understandable way that adequately describes the effects a ballot title would have on current law.

(Filing Date: 01-30-2014)

Rice v. Rabb

Tort Law: Claims for conversion and replevin "accrue" under ORS 12.080(4) when plaintiff knows or reasonably should know the elements of such claims.

(Filing Date: 01-30-2014)

State v. Zolotoff

Criminal Procedure: ORS 136.460(2) prescribes the order of jury deliberations but does not preclude a trial court from informing jurors on the elements of relevant lesser-included offenses in advance of their deliberations on the greater charged offense, in addition, ORS 136.460(2) does not preclude the jury from contemplating the law as it applies to lesser-included offenses when deliberating about the charged offense.

(Filing Date: 01-30-2014)

( 5 summaries )

February

Chase and Chase

Family Law: After an initial judgment is entered requiring payment of child support in future recurring installments, interest on unpaid installments is postjudgment, not prejudgment interest, and is governed by paragraph (2)(b), not paragraph (2)(c), of ORS 82.010.

(Filing Date: 02-13-2014)

McCann/Harmon v. Rosenblum

Ballot Titles: Under ORS 250.035, a ballot title must include a caption, results statements, and summary which adequately describe the effects of voting one way or another, and reasonably identify the subject matter. Where more specific language is available, it should be used to describe the ballot title in a simple and understandable way that adequately describes the effects a ballot title would have on current law.

(Filing Date: 02-13-2014)

Milne v. Rosenblum

Ballot Titles: A measure's subject is reasonably identified if it states or describes the subject accurately and in terms that will not confuse or mislead potential petition signers and voters.

(Filing Date: 02-13-2014)

State v. Supanchick

Evidence: The principle of forfeiture by wrongdoing ensures that a defendant cannot manipulate the availability of witnesses. A defendant gives up his right to confront evidence from a witness when defendant has made that witness unavailable by wrongdoing.

(Filing Date: 02-13-2014)

State v. Moore

Appellate Procedure: When the Court of Appeals does not consider all alternative bases for affirmance, the Supreme Court can remand the case back to the Court of Appeals for reconsideration.

(Filing Date: 02-27-2014)

( 4 summaries )

March

Herald and Steadman

Family Law: A court may consider the existence or absence, but not the value, of anticipated Social Security benefits as factors relevant to a just and proper division of property pursuant to ORS 107.105(f).

(Filing Date: 03-20-2014)

Montez v. Czerniak

Post-Conviction Relief: In post-conviction proceedings, petitioner bears the burden of proving inadequate assistance of counsel. Counsel’s trial strategy must be unreasonable, without appropriate consideration for risks and benefits, for petitioner to prevail.

(Filing Date: 03-20-2014)

Peace River Seed Co-Op v. Proseeds Marketing

Contract Law: An aggrieved seller who has resold goods can recover the difference between contract price and market price under ORS 72.7080(1), even when market price damages would exceed resale damages under ORS 72.7060.

(Filing Date: 03-20-2014)

State v. Lopes

Remedies: Trial courts have the authority to order hospitals to involuntarily medicate defendants for the purpose of restoring trial competency so long as the order complies with due process.

(Filing Date: 03-20-2014)

( 8 summaries )

April

Westfall v. State

Sovereign Immunity: Under ORS 30.265(6)(c), government employees responsible for applying policies enacted by high-level officials are protected by discretionary immunity when following the explicit orders of their superiors.

(Filing Date: 04-10-2014)

Purdy v. Deere and Company

Appellate Procedure: ORS 19.415(2) does not preclude instructional or evidentiary errors from the gambit of potential claims for reversal.

(Filing Date: 04-17-2014)

State v. Serrano

Criminal Law: Defendant's failure to preserve an argument regarding the sufficiency of evidence will lead to an affirmation of conviction. Also, where defendant does not object to testimony in a penalty-phase hearing and that testimony would not deny defendant a fair penalty-phase hearing, the trial court is not obligated to strike that testimony.

(Filing Date: 04-17-2014)

Department of Human Services v. S.M.

Juvenile Law: Under ORS 419B.372 and ORS 419B.376, the Department of Human Services has the legislative authority to immunize children while acting as the children’s legal custodian.

(Filing Date: 04-24-2014)

Kohring v. Ballard

Civil Procedure: Under ORS 14.080(2), wherever a corporation or partnership conducts “regular, sustained business activity” is where its normal and ordinary business activities are sustained, which requires evaluation of the quantitative nature of the corporation or partnership’s activity and the frequency of that activity.

(Filing Date: 04-24-2014)

McCann v. Rosenblum

Ballot Titles: Inaccurate phrasing in Initiative Petition 47, which seeks to change current system of state-licensed liquor stores, is subject to modification to enhance precision and to reduce negative perception.

(Filing Date: 04-24-2014)

PIH Beaverton, LLC v. Super One, Inc.

Civil Law: Posting and filing a completion notice pursuant to ORS 87.045 does not necessarily establish that the owner has accepted construction of the improvement as complete for occupation as required by ORS 12.135, but will be considered along with evidence that must demonstrate written consent or assent to construction as sufficiently complete for its intended use or occupancy; ORS 12.135 will only be satisfied by establishing the date on which the construction was fully complete, not the date on which it was sufficiently complete for its intended use or occupancy.

(Filing Date: 04-24-2014)

Sunset Presbyterian Church v. Brockamp & Jaeger, Inc.

Contract Law: In a construction contract specifying the issuance of a Certificate of Substantial Completion as a deadline for the accrual of claims, summary judgment is not appropriate if the date of completion is contested; while evidence of being used for its intended purpose is evidence of completion, that does not eliminate the need for a Certificate of Substantial Completion.

(Filing Date: 04-24-2014)

( 4 summaries )

May

Bates v. Rosenblum

Ballot Titles: Under ORS 250.085, the Supreme Court may either refer an errant ballot title to the Attorney General for modification, or correct it, certifying the resulting ballot title to the Secretary of State.

(Filing Date: 05-08-2014)

Dixon v. Rosenblum

Ballot Titles: Under ORS 250.085, the Court reviews ballot petitions for accuracy. Ballot titles found to be inaccurate are referred to the Attorney General for modification.

(Filing Date: 05-08-2014)

Dunn v. City of Milwaukie

Property Law: To show a government taking of property under the Oregon Constitution, Art. 1, Sec. 18, a plaintiff must show that an inevitable result of the government’s actions was the invasion of the plaintiff's property.

(Filing Date: 05-08-2014)

Two Two v. Fujitec America, Inc.

Tort Law: An ORCP 47 E affidavit which states an expert will testify to causation is sufficient to raise a question of fact and avoid summary judgment. ORS 30.920, Oregon's strict liability statute, does not apply to apply to service transactions.

(Filing Date: 05-08-2014)