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Court rules in favor of subcontractor suing Fort Wayne

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The Indiana Court of Appeals held Wednesday that a trial court properly granted summary judgment for a subcontractor seeking payment from the city of Fort Wayne after the general contractor working on the city park project declared bankruptcy.

In The City of Fort Wayne v. Consolidated Electrical Distributors, Inc d/b/a All-Phase Electric Supply Co., 02A04-1306-CC-283, the city argued All-Phase Electric Supply Co. did not comply with the notice requirements of I.C. 36-1-12-12, which provides a right of recovery to an unpaid subcontractor. General contractor Lights & Signals Inc. was awarded the park project but didn’t pay the more than $24,000 owed to All-Phase for its supplies. The city paid LSI 95 percent of the contract price.

All-Phase sent notice of the nonpayment to Fort Wayne Mayor Thomas C. Henry in April 2011. All-Phase said it had supplied materials through Feb. 7, 2011, making the notice timely under the 60-day window for unpaid claims. In All-Phase’s request for admissions, the city admitted that All-Phase supplied materials on or about Dec. 14, 2010, through Feb. 7, 2011. The city received the notice of claim April 6, 2011.

“As the moving party, All-Phase made a prima facie showing that no genuine issue of material fact existed as to its right to recover under Indiana Code section 36-1-12-12; the City failed to establish the contrary,” Judge Nancy Vaidik wrote. The judges found that the mayor, based on the language of this section, was properly served.

The judges also found the city is bound by its admission and cannot now try to exclude Feb. 7 from the range of time All-Phase provided materials.

“We agree that the admission establishes that All-Phase provided materials at some point or points during the date range, not throughout. But the City plainly admitted that All-Phase provided materials during the period from on or about December 14, 2010, through February 7, 2011,” Vaidik wrote.
 

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  2. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  3. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  4. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  5. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

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