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Weekly Caselaw Updates

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Bryant v. Cumberland Cty.

The New Jersey Appellate Division held in a matter of first impression that "service of a Tort Claims Act notice of claim on a county is sufficient when sent to the county clerk rather than the board of county commissioners." Plaintiff and her husband filed this personal injury action, alleging…

Bryant v. Cumberland Cty.
New Jersey Appellate Division

The New Jersey Appellate Division held in a matter of first impression that “service of a Tort Claims Act notice of claim on a county is sufficient when sent to the county clerk rather than the board of county commissioners.” Plaintiff and her husband filed this personal injury action, alleging Cumberland County’s negligence caused her… Continue reading Bryant v. Cumberland Cty.

Penn Nat’l Mut. Casualty Ins. Co. v. Phillips
Pennsylvania Superior Court

An insurance company started an action in subrogation after paying its insured for injuries suffered in a car crash caused by the defendant. A default judgment was entered, and, on appeal, the Pennsylvania Superior Court dealt with the defendant’s petition to strike or open the default judgment. At issue was attention to detail: a misspelled… Continue reading Penn Nat’l Mut. Casualty Ins. Co. v. Phillips

In re Nomination Petition of Bingham as Candidate for the Office of Democratic Comm. Person Ward 45, Division 9
Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court

The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court reviewed the order of the trial court that dismissed a citizen’s objections to a candidate’s petition to be included on a ballot for an election. The objecting citizen served the candidate by leaving a copy of the Objection Petition in the mailbox on the outside wall of the candidate’s residence. The… Continue reading In re Nomination Petition of Bingham as Candidate for the Office of Democratic Comm. Person Ward 45, Division 9

Artisan Constr. Grp., LLC v. Zoning Hearing Bd. of Upper Pottsgrove Twp.
Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court

The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court disagreed with the Court of Common Pleas that this appeal should be quashed. Upper Pottsgrove Township appealed a zoning issue and served its statement of errors on the trial court via UPS. The trial court opined that the appeal should be quashed because the litigant did not include a United States… Continue reading Artisan Constr. Grp., LLC v. Zoning Hearing Bd. of Upper Pottsgrove Twp.

Do you enjoy Civil Procedure? If so, read this opinion where the Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the denial of a petition to open and strike the default judgment. In 2013, Ms. Roy sued Mr. Rue, claiming assault and battery. The trial court entered a default judgment for Ms. Roy and awarded more than $23 million… Continue reading Roy v. Rue

Bellan v. Penn Presbyterian Med. Ctr.
Pennsylvania Superior Court

The Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed the trial court’s order, which dismissed the plaintiff’s complaint with prejudice. The plaintiff sued Penn Presbyterian Medical Center (“PPMC”) to recover damages for injuries he allegedly sustained while being treated as a patient. PPMC filed preliminary objections, alleging that the plaintiff did not serve PPMC promptly. The trial court sustained… Continue reading Bellan v. Penn Presbyterian Med. Ctr.

The Pennsylvania Superior Court affirmed an order of the Orphans’ Court, terminating the appellant’s parental rights. The issue was procedural. The appellant argued that he was not adequately served with the petition for involuntary termination under 23 Pa.C.S. § 2513 and Pennsylvania Orphans’ Court Rule 15.6. The appellant was notified of the hearing while virtually… Continue reading In re M.N.K.

The Pennsylvania Superior Court reversed the Orphans’ Court order that involuntarily terminated a couple’s parental rights to their five children. The Superior Court held that a county agency failed to comply with the Adoption Act and the Orphans’ Court Rules when the agency served the termination petitions on the parents by emailing the documents to… Continue reading In re K.M.D

Harris v. Couttien
Pennsylvania Superior Court

In a scant five pages, the Pennsylvania Superior Court reversed the Court of Common Pleas’ order that dismissed a complaint due to improper service. The plaintiffs filed a pro se complaint and served it by U.S. Mail and not by a sheriff, as required by Pa.R.Civ.P. 400(a). But, the defendants admitted receiving the complaint and… Continue reading Harris v. Couttien

Gussom v. Teagle
Pennsylvania Supreme Court

In Gussom v. Teagle, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court revisited “the Lamp rule”, which generally prohibits a plaintiff from filing a writ of summons or complaint, failing to serve it, but repeatedly seeking the summons/complaint to be reissued in order “to stall in its tracks the legal machinery he has just set in motion.” Here, the Supreme… Continue reading Gussom v. Teagle