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.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3091

SC19750 - Walgreen Eastern Co. v. West Hartford (Property tax appeal; assessments; "The plaintiff, Walgreen Eastern Company, Inc., appeals from the judgment of the trial court denying, in part, its appeal from the decision of the Board of Assessment Appeals (board) of the defendant, the town of West Hartford (town). The trial court concluded that the plaintiff had established aggrievement under General Statutes § 12-117a because the town overvalued its property. The court then found a new valuation for the subject property and ordered the town to provide the plaintiff with the appropriate reimbursement or credit for any overpayment plus interest. In addition, the trial court also determined that the town's assessment was not manifestly excessive under General Statutes § 12-119.

In the present appeal, the plaintiff claims that, although the trial court correctly determined that the plaintiff had established aggrievement by showing that the town's valuation of the property was excessive, it incorrectly (1) determined the true and actual value of the subject property, and (2) concluded that the town's valuation of the subject property was not manifestly excessive. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Connecticut Law Journal - July 17, 2018

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3090

The Connecticut Law Journal, Volume LXXX, No. 3, for July 17, 2018 is now available.

Contained in this issue is the following:

  • Table of Contents
  • Volume 328 Conn. Replacement Pages 444 - 444
  • Volume 328 Conn. Replacement Pages 451 - 452
  • Volume 328 Conn. Replacement Pages 557 - 558
  • Volume 329: Connecticut Reports (Pages 440 - 484)
  • Volume 329: Cumulative Table of Cases Connecticut Reports
  • Volume 183: Connecticut Appellate Reports (Pages 320 - 495)
  • Volume 183: Memorandum Decisions (Pages 901 - 901)
  • Volume 183: Cumulative Table of Cases Connecticut Appellate Reports
  • Miscellaneous Notices
  • Notices of Connecticut State Agencies


Habeas Appellate Law Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3086

AC33424 - St. Juste v. Commisssioner of Correction ("The petitioner claimed that the habeas court improperly rejected his claim that his trial counsel had rendered ineffective assistance because he failed to inform him that if he were convicted of the crime of assault in the second degree, his conviction would result in his certain deportation. In 2015, this court dismissed the appeal on mootness grounds. St. Juste v. Commissioner of Correction, 155 Conn. App. 164, 181, 109 A.3d 523 (2015). In 2018, following a grant of certification to appeal, our Supreme Court reversed the judgment of this court and remanded the case to this court with direction to consider the merits of the petitioner’s appeal. St. Juste v. Commissioner of Correction, 328 Conn. 198, 219, 177 A.3d 1144 (2018). Having done so, we affirm the judgment of the habeas court.")


Administrative Appeal Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3083

AC39372 - Handel v. Commissioner of Social Services (Administrative appeal; application for Medicaid benefits; "The plaintiff, Heather Handel, conservatrix for her father, Robert Wojciechowski (applicant), appeals from the judgment of the trial court affirming the denial of certain Medicaid benefits by the defendant, the Commissioner of Social Services, and dismissing her administrative appeal from that denial. On appeal to this court, the plaintiff claims that she is entitled to the relief requested—Medicaid coverage for a specified period of months—because the decision denying that relief was not issued by the Department of Social Services (department) within the time period mandated by law. We agree and, accordingly, reverse the judgment of the trial court.")

AC40061 - Clark v. Commissioner of Motor Vehicles (Administrative appeal; suspension of motor vehicle operator's and commercial driver's licenses by defendant Commissioner of Motor Vehicles; "When a driver is suspected of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, our statutes require that law enforcement commence any consensual chemical alcohol tests within two hours of such operation. Otherwise, the results of those tests, although ostensibly valid, are neither admissible nor competent evidence of operation under the influence. In an administrative appeal from the suspension of both his standard and commercial operator's licenses, the plaintiff, James P. Clark, challenged, among other things, the finding of the defendant, the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles (commissioner), that his failed chemical alcohol tests were timely. The Superior Court was not persuaded and dismissed his appeal. The plaintiff now appeals, claiming that the court improperly (1) determined that there was substantial evidence in the record to support a finding that there was probable cause to arrest him for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, and (2) denied his motion to reargue or for reconsideration. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the Superior Court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3084

AC39977 - Hum v. Silvester (Injunction; whether trial court correctly determined that defendants had prescriptive easement over shared driveway; "This appeal centers on an easement for shared use of a driveway over a lot of land in Stonington providing access to an adjacent lot. The plaintiffs, Chi Hum and Mai Lee Yue Hum, owners of the burdened lot, appeal from the judgment of the trial court, rendered after a trial to the court, in favor of the defendants, Mark S. Silvester and Nancy J. Hoerrner. On appeal, the plaintiffs claim that the trial court improperly found on the basis of the evidence that (1) the defendants were entitled to a prescriptive easement over the driveway, (2) the defendants were entitled to an implied easement over the driveway, and (3) granting an implied easement was legally consistent with the grant of a prescriptive easement. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Criminal Supreme and Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3082

SC19863 - State v. Norman P. (Sexual assault in spousal relationship; assault of elderly person second degree; assault of elderly person third degree; certification from Appellate Court; "The dispositive issue in this appeal is whether the Appellate Court properly concluded that the trial court lacked discretion to refuse to mark records for identification following the court's determination that the defendant, Norman P., had failed to make the requisite showing to require an in camera review of those records. State v. Norman P., 169 Conn. App. 616, 639–40, 151 A.3d 877 (2016). We conclude that the trial court had no such discretion. This certified appeal arises from the defendant's conviction of three counts of sexual assault in a spousal relationship in violation of General Statutes § 53a-70b, one count of assault of an elderly person in the second degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-60b, and one count of assault of an elderly person in the third degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-61a.The state claims that the Appellate Court incorrectly concluded that the trial court had improperly declined to conduct an in camera review of the complainant's privileged records from Interval House, an organization that provides counseling and other services to domestic violence victims, and that the trial court also improperly declined to mark those records for identification. The state additionally challenges the Appellate Court's conclusion that, in declining to admit into evidence the defendant's entire written statement to the police, the trial court misinterpreted § 1-5 (b) of the Connecticut Code of Evidence and our relevant case law applying that rule. We affirm the judgment of the Appellate Court on the basis of our conclusion that the trial court improperly refused to mark for identification the complainant's privileged records from Interval House, and that the court further abused its discretion in declining to review those records in camera. Because the issue is likely to arise on remand, we also address the state's claim that the Appellate Court improperly concluded that the defendant's entire written statement was admissible pursuant to § 1-5 (b). Although we agree with the Appellate Court that the trial court misinterpreted § 1-5 (b) and our relevant case law applying that rule, we disagree that the entire statement should have come into evidence pursuant to that rule. To the contrary, our application of § 1-5 (b) leads us to conclude that only a portion, rather than the entirety, of the defendant's prior statement should have been admitted.")

SC19518 - State v. Jan G. (Murder; assault of elderly person third degree; "The issue we must resolve in this appeal is whether the trial court's decision to allow the defendant to testify in narrative form caused him to be self-represented during his testimony without a proper waiver of his right to counsel. The defendant claims that State v. Francis, 317 Conn. 450, 452, 118 A.3d 529 (2015), wherein this court held that the defendant, Maurice Francis, was self-represented during his narrative testimony and that his waiver of the right to counsel was not voluntary, controls the present case and requires a new trial. Because of the factual distinctions between this case and Francis, however, we conclude that our decision in that case does not control the outcome of the present appeal. Instead, on the basis of our review of the facts and circumstances of the present case, we conclude that the defendant was not self-represented during his testimony and, therefore, is not entitled to a new trial. Accordingly, we affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC38602 - State v. Taveras (Violation of probation; revocation of probation; whether words defendant used to express frustration with preschool staff member constituted fighting words or true threat under first amendment to United States constitution or under statute proscribing breach of peace in second degree (§ 53a-181 [a] [1] and [3]); "The defendant, Kerlyn M. Taveras, appeals from the judgments of the trial court finding him in violation of his probation and revoking his probation pursuant to General Statutes § 53a-32, following his arrest on a charge of breach of the peace in the second degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-181 (a) (1). On appeal, the defendant claims that the state adduced insufficient evidence at his probation revocation hearing to establish a violation of probation. Central to the defendant's claim of insufficient evidence is whether the words he used spontaneously to express his frustration with his child's preschool staff, which formed the basis for his violation of probation, constituted "fighting words" or a "true threat," two forms of speech that are not protected by the first and fourteenth amendments to the United States constitution. Under the facts and circumstances of the present case, we conclude that the defendant's speech did not constitute "fighting words" or a "true threat" and, for that reason, cannot be proscribed by § 53a-181 (a) consistent with the first amendment. We therefore agree with the defendant that the evidence adduced at his probation revocation hearing was insufficient to establish a violation of probation and, accordingly, reverse the judgments of the trial court and remand the cases with direction to render judgments in favor of the defendant.")

AC40254 - State v. Petitpas (Sexual assault in first degree; sexual assault in second degree; sexual assault in fourth degree; unlawful restraint in second degree; risk of injury to child; motion to correct illegal sentence; "The defendant, Chad Petitpas, appeals from the judgment of the trial court denying his motion to correct an illegal sentence under Practice Book § 43-22. On appeal, the defendant claims that the sentencing court materially relied on inaccurate information pertaining to his age and criminal record. We disagree and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")



Family Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3088

AC39538 - Conroy v. Idlibi ("The defendant, Ammar A. Idlibi, appeals from the judgment of the trial court dissolving his marriage to the plaintiff, Katie N. Conroy. The defendant claims that the court erred (1) by finding that neither party bore greater responsibility for the breakdown of the marriage and (2) in making financial awards that were favorable to the plaintiff. We affirm the judgment of the court.")

AC40019 - Zilkha v. Zilkha ("In this protracted and bitterly contested dissolution action, the defendant, David Zilkha, appeals from the postjudgment order of the trial court increasing the fees payable to the guardian ad litem. On appeal, the defendant claims that the court erred by (1) refusing to permit evidence of misrepresentations by the guardian ad litem and (2) modifying the hourly rate of the guardian ad litem. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Foreclosure Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3087

AC39350 - Bank of America, N.A. v. Kydes ("The defendant, Andrew D. Kydes, appeals from the judgment of strict foreclosure rendered by the trial court in favor of the substitute plaintiff, Christiana Trust, a Division of Wilmington Savings Fund Society, FSB Not in Its Individual Capacity but as Trustee of ARLP Trust 5 (Christiana Trust). On appeal, the defendant claims that the trial court erred: (1) in relying upon a "procedural default" to find that the named plaintiff, Bank of America, N.A. (Bank of America), had standing to bring the instant action, and thus that the court had subject matter jurisdiction over the action; and (2) in failing to hold an evidentiary hearing on his claim that Bank of America lacked standing to bring this action. We disagree, and thus affirm the judgment of the trial court. ")


Legal Malpractice Appellate Court Opinion

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3089

AC39507 - Corneroli v. Kutz ("The plaintiff in this legal malpractice action, Louis D. Corneroli, appeals from the summary judgment rendered by the trial court in favor of the defendants, Ronald W. Kutz and Kutz & Prokop, LLP. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court improperly (1) rendered summary judgment in favor of the defendants on the basis of its conclusion that there was insufficient expert testimony on the issue of causation, and (2) considered certain documents filed by the defendants. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3085

AC41248, AC41249 - In re Katherine H., In re James H.("In these consolidated appeals, the self-represented respondent mother, Ann C., appeals from the judgments of the trial court finding her minor children, Katherine H. and James H., neglected and committing them to the custody of the petitioner, the Commissioner of Children and Families. On appeal, the respondent essentially takes issue with the manner in which the Department of Children and Families (department) performed its responsibilities and the court’s factual findings. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Juvenile Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3080

AC41157- In re Zoey H. ("The respondent claims that (1) his right to procedural due process under the United States constitution was violated by the court’s failure to hold a hearing to determine his fitness as a parent before depriving him of the custody and care of his child, and (2) as applied, General Statutes § 46b-129 (m) violates his right to substantive due process under the United States constitution and improperly assigns the burden of proof to him. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Law Library Hours Update July 10th - July 13th

   by Dowd, Jeffrey

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3072

Wednesday, July 11th

  • Bridgeport Law Library will open at 11:30 a.m.
  • New London Law Library will open at 3:15 p.m.

Thursday, July 12th

  • New Britain Law Library will be close at 4:30 p.m.
  • Rockville Law Library will close at 2:30 p.m.

Friday, July 13th

  • New Britain Law Library will be closed.
  • Middletown Law Library will close at 2:00 p.m.
  • Waterbury Law Library will be closed.




Connecticut Law Journal - July 10, 2018

   by Mazur, Catherine

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3079

The Connecticut Law Journal, Volume LXXX, No. 2, for July 10, 2018 is now available.

Contained in this issue is the following:

  • Table of Contents
  • Volume 329: Orders (Pages 912 - 913)
  • Volume 329: Cumulative Table of Cases Connecticut Reports
  • Volume 183: Connecticut Appellate Reports (Pages 200 - 319)
  • Volume 183: Cumulative Table of Cases Connecticut Appellate Reports
  • Supreme Court Pending Cases


Amendments to the Rules of Professional Conduct, Code of Judicial Conduct, and Superior Court Rules

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3078

The Judicial Branch has posted new Amendments to the Rules of Professional Conduct, Code of Judicial Conduct, and Superior Court Rules.

On June 15, 2018, the judges of the Superior Court adopted the revisions to the Practice Book that are contained herein.

These revisions become effective on January 1, 2019, except that the amendments to Sections 2-8 and 2-13 become effective on July 3, 2018.

See the Judicial Branch's Connecticut Practice Book webpage for more information.


Insurance Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3076

AC39834 - DAB Three, LLC v. LandAmerica Financial Group, Inc.("In this action arising from the alleged breach of contract for the procurement of an environmental insurance policy, the plaintiff, DAB Three, LLC, appeals from the judgments rendered in favor of the defendants LandAmerica Financial Group, Inc. (LFG), LandAmerica Environmental Insurance Service Agency, Inc. (LEISA), Sandra Fitzpatrick, and Debra Moser. The plaintiff claims that the trial court erred (1) in dismissing its breach of contract claim against LFG for lack of subject matter jurisdiction, and (2) in rendering summary judgment in favor of LEISA, Fitzpatrick and Moser on the plaintiff’s breach of contract claims against them. We agree with the plaintiff that the summary judgment rendered in favor of LEISA cannot stand. We disagree, however, with the plaintiff’s claims of error as to the dismissal of its claim against LFG and the rendering of summary judgments in favor of Fitzpatrick and Moser. Accordingly, we reverse in part and affirm in part the judgments of the trial court.")


Civil Protection Order Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3077

AC39706 - Tala E.H. v. Syed I. ("This appeal arises out of an order of protection issued against the self-represented defendant, Syed I., in favor of the self-represented plaintiff, Tala E. H. On appeal, the defendant commingles claims related to the judgments rendered by the trial court when it continued the order of protection against him and thereafter when it denied his postjudgment motions for contempt and clarification. Specifically, the defendant claims that the trial court (1) was guilty of judicial misconduct and bias, (2) denied him due process by failing to rule on his discovery motions, (3) denied him the right to a public trial, (4) misread the evidence, (5) abused its discretion by failing to create a record of certain testimony, and (6) improperly denied his motions for contempt and clarification. The majority of the defendant’s claims are inadequately briefed, and, therefore, we address only his judicial misconduct and evidentiary claims. We affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Administrative Appeal Appellate Court Opinions

   by Booth, George

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3074

AC39332 - Starble v. Inland Wetlands Commission (Administrative appeal; "The plaintiff, Jennifer L. Starble, appeals from the judgment of the Superior Court dismissing her appeal from the decision of the Inland Wetlands Commission of the Town of New Hartford (commission) granting Roger J. Schiffert and Linda Schiffert's (applicants) application for a permit to build a driveway across wetlands on their property. On appeal, the plaintiff contends that the court incorrectly (1) concluded that the requirement of presenting feasible and prudent alternatives under General Statutes § 22a-41 (a) (2) and (b) (2), and under § 7.5 (f) of the Town of New Hartford Inland Wetlands and Watercourses Regulations (regulations) was directory rather than mandatory, and (2) applied the substantial evidence test to review the record of the proceedings before the commission. We agree with both claims, and, accordingly, reverse the judgment of the Superior Court.")

AC39106 - Speer v. Dept. of Agriculture (Administrative appeal; appeal of animal disposal orders pursuant to statute (§ 22-538); "The plaintiff, Sheri Speer, appeals from the judgment of the trial court denying her motion to open the judgment of nonsuit rendered in favor of the defendants, the Department of Agriculture (department), the city of Norwich (city), and Michele Lombardi, an animal control officer employed by the city. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court abused its discretion in denying her motion to open. We agree and, accordingly, reverse the judgment of the trial court.")


Foreclosure Appellate Court Opinions

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://www.jud.state.ct.us/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=3075

AC38806 - Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. v. Lorson ("The defendants, Eric Lorson and Laurin Maday, appeal from the judgment of strict foreclosure rendered by the trial court in favor of the plaintiff, Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. On appeal, the defendants claim that the court improperly found that the plaintiff met its burden of proving its prima facie case and that the defendants failed to prove their special defenses of equitable estoppel and unclean hands. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")

AC40307 - Webster Bank, N.A. v. Frasca ("The plaintiff, Webster Bank, N.A., appeals from the trial court’s denial of its motion for a deficiency judgment following a judgment of strict foreclosure against the defendants Brian J. Frasca and Allison D. Brant. On appeal, the plaintiff asserts three claims: (1) the court committed plain error by (a) failing to consider two valuations of the property found in the appraisal report of the plaintiff’s expert witness, (b) imposing an incorrect burden of proof under General Statutes § 49-14, and (c) making comments during the hearing that demonstrated judicial bias; (2) the court abused its discretion by erroneously relying on various exhibits submitted during the deficiency judgment hearing; and (3) the court abused its discretion by denying the plaintiff’s motion for a protective order in response to the defendant’s notice of deposition. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


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