FINDLAW: Daily Opinion Summaries for New York Court of Appeals – 6/25/09

CONSTITUTIONAL LAW, GOVERNMENT LAW

Parkhouse v. Stringer, No. 111
In a motion to quash a government subpoena seeking information regarding false statements allegedly made by Petitioner at a public hearing, the denial of the motion is affirmed, where the First Amendment did not protect Petitioner’s misstatement of the content of letters written by public officials.

EDUCATION LAW, GOVERNMENT LAW

New York Charter Schs. Ass’n. v. DiNapoli, No. 108
In an action challenging the State Comptroller’s authority to conduct academic performance audits of charter schools, judgment for Defendants is reversed, where the legislature violated Article V, Section 1 of the state constitution when it assigned and directed the comptroller to audit charter schools.

INJURY AND TORT LAW, INSURANCE LAW, LANDLORD TENANT LAW

Kassis v. Ohio Cas. Ins. Co., No. 117
In an action seeking indemnification from an insurer regarding a slip and fall personal injury action, judgment for Defendant is reversed where a landlord is an additional insured under an insurance policy obtained by his tenant, such that the insurer is obligated to defend and indemnify the landlord in an underlying personal injury lawsuit.

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INJURY AND TORT LAW, INSURANCE LAW, TRANSPORTATION

Central Mut. Ins. Co. v. Bemiss, No. 113
In an action to stay an arbitration regarding Plaintiff-Insurer’s obligation to settle a personal injury claim, judgment for Defendant is affirmed where consent-to-settle and subrogation-protection provisions in the supplementary uninsured/underinsured endorsement in an automobile liability insurance policy remain in force when an insured has exhausted the available policy limits of a single tortfeasor in a multi-tortfeasor accident.

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FINDLAW: Daily Opinion Summaries for U.S. Supreme Court – 06/25/09

ADMINISTRATIVE LAW, ADMIRALTY, INJURY AND TORT LAW, REMEDIES

Atlantic Sounding Co., Inc. v. Townsend, No. 08–214
In an action based on Defendant’s alleged refusal to pay maintenance and cure to Plaintiff for injuries he suffered while working on Defendant’s tugboat, the District Court’s order holding that punitive damages were available is affirmed where punitive damages for the willful and wanton disregard of the maintenance and cure obligation remain available as a matter of general maritime law.

CIVIL PROCEDURE, EDUCATION LAW

Horne v. Flores, No. 08–289
In a motion by state legislators to purge the District Court’s contempt order holding that the state was providing inadequate English Language-Learner instruction in the school district at issue, the denial of the motion is reversed, where the lower courts did not engage in the proper analysis under Fed. R. Civ. P. 60(b)(5), because they did not analyze whether changed circumstances warranted reexamination of the original judgment.

CIVIL RIGHTS, CRIMINAL LAW & PROCEDURE, EDUCATION LAW

Safford Unified Sch. Dist. No. 1. v. Redding, No. 08-479
In a 42 U.S.C. section 1983 action alleging an unlawful search of a student, the denial of summary judgment based on qualified immunity is affirmed where the search of Plaintiff’s underwear violated the Fourth Amendment because the facts did not give school officials reasonable suspicion to search her underwear.

CRIMINAL LAW & PROCEDURE, EVIDENCE

Melendez-Diaz v. Mass., No. 07–591
Defendant’s drug conviction is reversed, where the trial court’s admission of the prosecution’s certificates by laboratory analysts, stating that material seized by police and connected to Defendant was cocaine of a certain quantity, violated petitioner’s Sixth Amendment right to confront the witnesses against him.