HeadsUp for Washington State: Court Opinions From Monday, March 24, 2014

HeadsUp for Washington State: Court Opinions From Monday, March 24, 2014

Monday, March 24, 2014 

To view the full text of these opinions, please visit: http://www.courts.wa.gov/opinions/index.cfm?fa=opinions.recent or Lexis subscribers may use the links below to access the cases on either lexis.com or Lexis Advance. 

Division One of the Court of Appeals filed 3 new published opinions and announced the publication of 4 additional opinions on Monday, March 24, 2014.

1. Hernandez v. Stender
No. 71064-8
(March 24, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 701 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 701 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: COURTS; PERSONAL INJURY AND INSURANCE LAW

Brief: The plaintiff was not entitled to attorney fees pursuant to RCW 7.06.060 based on the defendant's failure to improve her position in a trial de novo from arbitration of an automobile accident case because the plaintiff improperly disclosed an offer of compromise prior to the trial court's entry of judgment. Because the defendant did not improve her position relative to the arbitration award on appeal, the plaintiff is entitled to fees on appeal.
 

2. State v. Howland
No. 68873-1 
(March 24, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 698 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 698 (Lexis Advance) 

Areas: COURTS; CRIMINAL LAW

Brief: The trial court's order denying the petition for conditional release by a person confined in a state mental hospital as criminally insane was not appealable as of right under RAP 2.2, and discretionary review under RAP 2.3 was not warranted.

3. Mazier v. Dep't of Corr.
No. 71068-1
(March 24, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 690 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 690 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: COURTS; GOVERNMENT RELATIONS AND ADMINISTRATIVE LAW; PERSONAL INJURY AND INSURANCE LAW

Brief: Generally, when a plaintiff brings a maritime claim in state court pursuant to the “saving to suitors” clause, Const. art. I, § 21 establishes the parties' rights to a jury trial. That constitutional provision, however, does not grant such a right to the State of Washington, the party against whom the claim at issue in this case was asserted. Thus, the trial court in this case did not err by striking the jury upon the plaintiff's request.

4. McDonald v. Cove to Clover
No. 69916-4 
(Filed January 13, 2014; ordered published March 19, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 41 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 41 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: PERSONAL INJURY AND INSURANCE LAW

Brief: The plaintiff slipped and fell on wet grass at an outdoor festival. He and his wife appealed the trial court's summary judgment dismissing his premises liability claim and her related loss of consortium claim. The Court of Appeals affirms, holding that the festival organizer had no duty to warn of or remedy the obvious risk posed by wet grass because it had no reason to anticipate that the plaintiff would fail to protect himself from the risk.

5. Watson v. Nw. Tr. Servs.
No. 69352-2 
(Filed January 21, 2014; ordered published March 18, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 131 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 131 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: BUSINESS AND COMMERCIAL LAW; PERSONAL INJURY AND INSURANCE LAW; PROPERTY AND LAND USE LAW

Brief: The trial court committed probable error and substantially altered the status quo when it dismissed the homeowners' Consumer Protection Act claims. The court did not commit error when it denied the trustee's motion for summary dismissal of the homeowners' foreclosure fairness act claims.

6. Sisley v. Seattle Pub. Schs. 
No. 69316-6 
(Filed February 24, 2014; ordered published March 19, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 430 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 430 (Lexis Advance)

Areas: PERSONAL INJURY AND INSURANCE LAW

Brief: The defamation claim, which arose from an article written by a high school student in a school newspaper regarding rental properties owned by the plaintiff, was properly dismissed on summary judgment because the plaintiff failed to prove falsity.

7. Bunch v. Nationwide Mut. Ins. Co.
No. 69600-9 
(Filed February 3, 2014; ordered published March 19, 2014)
2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 287 (lexis.com)

2014 Wash. App. LEXIS 287 (Lexis Advance) 

Areas: COURTS; PERSONAL INJURY AND INSURANCE LAW

Brief: Under the priority of action doctrine, the state court could not adjudicate the plaintiff's request for injunctive relief under the Consumer Protection Act until the federal court determined that the defendant violated the Act.

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