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COA affirms trial court in land rental dispute

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has affirmed a trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of a tenant who was not given adequate notice to vacate rented land.

In The Guardianship of Harold G. Gardner, Scott A. Gardner, Guardian v. Carl Prochno, No. 50A03-1108-PL-385, Carl Prochno rented 480 acres of farm land in Marshall County. On April 11, 2010, Prochno received a Notice to Terminate Tenancy for half of that acreage from Scott Gardner, who is Harold Gardner’s son, guardian and attorney-in-fact.

On Dec. 6, 2010, Prochno’s attorney sent a letter to Scott Gardner and the attorney for Harold Gardner’s guardianship requesting confirmation that the notice to terminate applied only to 240 acres. On Jan. 27, 2011, Scott sent Prochno an amended notice to terminate, including the additional 240 acres excluded from the original notice.

The COA wrote that Marshall County custom is that a farm lease is a year-to-year tenancy that commences on March 1 each year. And pursuant to Indiana Code 32-31-1, written notice to terminate a year-to-year tenancy must be tendered not less than three months before the expiration of the year.

While Prochno agreed that the first notice had been timely – well in advance of the March 1, 2011, expiration of the year-to-year agreement, the latest date the amended notice could have been filed was Nov. 30, 2010. The appellate court agreed, affirming summary judgment in favor of Prochno.  

 

 

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  1. Well, maybe it's because they are unelected, and, they have a tendency to strike down laws by elected officials from all over the country. When you have been taught that "Democracy" is something almost sacred, then, you will have a tendency to frown on such imperious conduct. Lawyers get acculturated in law school into thinking that this is the very essence of high minded government, but to people who are more heavily than King George ever did, they may not like it. Thanks for the information.

  2. I pd for a bankruptcy years ago with Mr Stiles and just this week received a garnishment from my pay! He never filed it even though he told me he would! Don't let this guy practice law ever again!!!

  3. Excellent initiative on the part of the AG. Thankfully someone takes action against predators taking advantage of people who have already been through the wringer. Well done!

  4. Conour will never turn these funds over to his defrauded clients. He tearfully told the court, and his daughters dutifully pledged in interviews, that his first priority is to repay every dime of the money he stole from his clients. Judge Young bought it, much to the chagrin of Conour’s victims. Why would Conour need the $2,262 anyway? Taxpayers are now supporting him, paying for his housing, utilities, food, healthcare, and clothing. If Conour puts the money anywhere but in the restitution fund, he’s proved, once again, what a con artist he continues to be and that he has never had any intention of repaying his clients. Judge Young will be proven wrong... again; Conour has no remorse and the Judge is one of the many conned.

  5. Pass Legislation to require guilty defendants to pay for the costs of lab work, etc as part of court costs...

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