Opinions March 31, 2021

Indiana Court of Appeals 

The Lincoln National Life Insurance Company v. Beverly M. Kennedy
20A-PL-837
Civil plenary. Affirms in part, reverses in part and enters full summary judgment in favor of Lincoln National on its complaint for declaratory judgment pertaining to a group long-term disability benefits policy. Concludes that Lincoln National was entitled to full summary judgment as a matter of law based on the policy’s provisions, and therefore, reverses the Washington Circuit Court’s grant of partial summary judgment to Kennedy. Concludes that the trial court did not abuse its discretion when it ordered that Lincoln National was entitled to reimbursement of overpaid benefits, subject to interest.

Rex Carroll v. Long Tail Corp., d/b/a CodeClouds
20A-PL-1285
Civil plenary. Affirms in part and reverses in part a preliminary injunction issued in Allen Superior Court against Rex Carroll in a noncompete dispute with his former employer. Reverses the court’s order to the extent it prohibited Carroll from soliciting contractors and affirms the order in all other respects.

William C. Foley v. Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development and Twin City Dodge, Inc.
20A-EX-1839
Civil. Affirms ruling by administrative law judge and the Review Board of the Indiana Workforce Development that William Foley is not entitled to unemployment benefits because he voluntarily left his job at Twin City Dodge without good cause. Finds Foley did not meet his burden to show the dealership had failed to honor its guarantee to pay him 75% of the average he had earned in 2019 plus commissions.

Mark A. Bonds v. State of Indiana
20A-CR-01449
Criminal. Reverses the denial of Mark Bonds’ motion to correct erroneous sentence. Remands to Marion Superior Court with instructions to enter a judgment of conviction that includes the amount of credit time earned for time spent in confinement before sentencing.

I-65 Plaza, LLC, and Bassam A. Abdulla, v.Indiana Grocery Group, LLC
20A-CC-1537
Civil collection. Reverses and remands the Lake Superior Court’s grant of Indiana Grocery Group’s motion for immediate possession, grant of IGG’s motion to strike, and award of attorney’s fees to IGG against I-65 Plaza and Bassam Abdulla. Finds the trial court erred in granting IGG’s motion for immediate possession and in granting IGG’s motion to strike and awarding IGG attorney’s fees.

Sean Z. Sheikh v. Hinsdale Bank & Trust Company LLC (mem. dec.)
20A-MF-01244
Mortgage foreclosure. Affirms the grant of summary judgment to Hinsdale Bank & Trust. Finds Sheikh waived his claim that the Lake Superior Court lacked jurisdiction over the case by failing to raise the issue in the trial court. Finds Hinsdale filed its motion for summary judgment was timely filed. Although the trial court erred when it refused to consider Sheikh’s evidence designated in response to a successive summary judgment motion, that error was harmless because (1) Sheikh is liable to Hinsdale under the plain, unambiguous, and undisputed terms of the Unconditional Guarantee; (2) Sheikh waived his fraud defense by failing to raise it in his responsive pleading and the parties did not litigate the merits of that defense; and (3) Sheikh waived his contentions regarding mitigation of damages and violation of SBA regulations by failing to provide citation to supporting legal authority and cogent argument.

Brian Wesley Curry v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
20A-CR-01505
Criminal. Affirms Brian Curry’s conviction of Level 6 felony operating a vehicle while intoxicated. Finds the Hamilton Superior Court properly admitted evidence of a blood draw, and that Curry has not sustained his burden of establishing that his 4½-year sentence on this charge and a habitual vehicular substance offender enhancement is inappropriate in light of the nature of the offenses and his character.

Clinten Stuteville v. Jerry Adams, et al. (mem. dec.)
20A-CT-01827
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment for Jan Adams, Clinten Stuteville’s ex-wife, in a personal injury negligence action after he injured his foot while helping Adams’ husband, Jerry, unload metal from a trailer. Finds the Warrick Superior Court did not err in determining that Jan could not be held vicariously liable in this case.

In the Matter of K.D. and J.D., Children in Need of Services, J.W. (Mother) v. Indiana Department of Child Services (mem. dec.)
20A-JC-01867
Juvenile child in need of services. Affirms the Hendricks Superior Court’s determination that K.D. and J.D. are children in need of services. Finds that in light of the unchallenged findings and evidence, Mother J.W.’s substantial rights were not affected and reversal is not warranted.

Connor M. Finch v. Heather Nicole Duthie (mem. dec.)
20A-JP-01949
Juvenile paternity. Affirms the Delaware Circuit Court’s order granting mother Heather Duthie’s request to relocate with minor child E.F. to Germany. Finds father Connor M. Finch failed to carry his burden of proving that relocation was not in the child’s best interest.

Mani S. Johnson v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
20A-CR-01977
Criminal. Affirms the Hamilton Superior Court order revoking Mani Johnson’s probation, concluding the trial court was within its discretion to order Johnson to serve the entirety of his previously suspended sentence upon finding that he had violated his probation

K.H. v. State of Indiana (mem. dec.)
20A-JV-01987
Juvenile. Affirms K.H.’s adjudication as delinquent in Lawrence Circuit Court for committing an act that would be domestic battery as a Level 6 felony if committed by an adult. Finds the evidence is sufficient to support the adjudication.

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