Articles Posted in Supreme Court of Ohio

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The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the court of appeals reversing the trial court's order confirming the sale of Homeowners' property after the trial court entered a foreclosure decree in favor of Bank, holding that the foreclosure decree was a final, appealable order. Homeowners challenged the trial court's entry of a foreclosure decree in favor Bank. The court of appeals dismissed the appeal for lack of a final, appealable order because the foreclosure decree did not state the amounts owed to two other lienholders. During the appeal, Homeowners' property was sold at a sheriff's sale. Homeowners' second appeal challenged the trial court's order confirming the sale of the property. The court of appeals concluded that the law-of-the-case doctrine required adherence to its earlier decision that the foreclosure decree was not a final, appealable order, and therefore, the trial court had no authority to confirm the sale. The Supreme Court reversed and reinstated the trial court's confirmation of sale, holding that the foreclosure decree against Homeowners was a final, appealable order that fully addressed the rights and responsibilities of all parties. View "Farmers State Bank v. Sponaugle" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the court of appeals dismissing Appellant's petition for a writ of mandamus to compel Appellee, Judge Megan E. Shanahan of the Hamilton County Court of Common Pleas, to provide public records relating to his incarceration, holding that Appellant improperly sought records under the Public Records Act rather than the Rules of Superintendence. Appellant was convicted of aggravated burglary, abduction, and rape. Appellant later filed motions seeking the inspection and release of public records relating to his case. Judge Shanahan denied the motions, noting that Appellant could access all publicly available records through the clerk of courts. Appellant then filed his petition for a writ of mandamus. The court of appeals dismissed the writ, concluding that since Appellant was incarcerated, a sentencing court must first determine that the court records were necessary to support a justiciable claim. The Supreme Court affirmed but on different grounds, holding that the court of appeals erred in applying the Ohio Public Records Act, Ohio Rev. Code 149.43, to Appellant's records request and that the court of appeals correctly dismissed the case. View "State ex rel. Husband v. Shanahan" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court denied as moot Relator's complaint seeking a writ of mandamus against Larry Greene, the administrative assistant for the warden of the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility, to compel the production of public records, holding that Relator was not entitled to mandamus because he received the documents that he requested. After Relator, an inmate, submitted a public-records request he filed a complaint for writ of mandamus against Greene. Eight days later, Relator was provided with copies of the requested records. Greene filed a motion to dismiss on the grounds that Relator filed to attach certain documents to the complaint. Three months late, Relator filed a motion asking the Court to consider the affidavit and exhibits attached to his complaint as substantive evidence. The Supreme Court (1) denied the writ of mandamus as moot; (2) denied Relator's demand for statutory damages and court costs on the merits; and (3) denied Relator's motion to have the attachments to his complaint accepted as service as moot. View "State ex rel. Martin v. Greene" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court denied Appellee's motion to dismiss Appellant's appeal from the decision of the Board of Tax Appeals (BTA) that denied Appellant's claim for property-tax exemption for several parcels of land it owned, holding that Appellant timely perfected its appeal. As support for its motion to dismiss, Appellee argued that because Appellant did not initiate service by certified mail within the thirty-day period prescribed by Ohio Rev. Code 5717.04 for filing its notice of appeal, the Supreme Court must dismiss the appeal for lack of jurisdiction. The Supreme Court rejected Appellee's argument, holding that section 5717.04 does not state a timeline for the certified-mail service of the notice of appeal on the appellees, and it is not disputed that the notice of appeal was properly served on Appellee by certified mail. View "The City of Upper Arlington v. McClain" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the court of appeals' denial of a writ of prohibition sought by Appellants against Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas Judge Dick Ambrose, holding that the judge had jurisdiction over a breach of contract case against Appellants, a law firm and its then named partners. A company sued Appellants for the deductible due under a malpractice insurance policy. The named partners moved for partial judgment on the pleadings, arguing that they were not individually liable for the debts of the partnership. Judge Ambrose denied the motion and allowed the case to proceed with the partners as named defendants. A jury found against Appellants. Appellants then filed a complaint for a writ of prohibition, arguing that Judge Ambrose exceeded his statutory authority by permitting the trial to go forward against the named partners. The court of appeals granted summary judgment to Judge Ambrose. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that Appellants failed to show that Judge Ambrose's exercise of judicial power was unauthorized by law. View "State ex rel. Novak, LLP v. Ambrose" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals dismissing Appellant's complaint for a writ of mandamus, holding that the court of appeals correctly dismissed Appellant's petition for noncompliance with Ohio Rev. Code 2969.25(A). Appellant, an inmate at the Marion Correctional Institution, filed a mandamus petition alleging that the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction had miscalculated his maximum-sentence release date. Appellant attached to his compliant an affidavit listing three civil actions he had filed in the previous five years, but the list did not include a mandamus action Appellant had filed two weeks earlier. The court of appeals dismissed the case for failure to comply with the mandatory requirements of section 2969.25(A). The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that because the affidavit listed some, but not all, of Appellant's prior actions, the petition was correctly dismissed. View "State ex rel. Swanson v. Ohio Department of Rehabilitation & Correction" on Justia Law

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In this original action brought by Relator seeking a writ of mandamus to compel the Guernsey County Sheriff to release records related to a criminal case against Bryan Bates, the Supreme Court denied Relator's petition for a writ of mandamus and denied her request for court costs but awarded her statutory damages in the amount of $1,000. When the sheriff did not respond to Relator's requests seeking public records relating to the criminal case State v. Bates, Relator brought this action seeking a writ of mandamus to compel the sheriff to provide the requested records. The Supreme Court (1) denied Relator's mandamus claim because Relator failed to prove that the requested records existed or that they were in the custody of the sheriff's office, (2) denied Relator's request for court costs because the Court denied Relator's mandamus claim, and (3) granted Relator the maximum amount of statutory damages because Relator showed that the sheriff's response was incomplete. View "State ex rel. Cordell v. Paden" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals dismissing Appellant’s petition for a writ of mandamus against Summit County Common Pleas Court Judge Jill Lanzinger, holding that the court of appeals correctly dismissed the petition. In his petition, Appellant alleged that the trial court lacked jurisdiction over his criminal case because a criminal complaint was never filed against him. Appellant requested the writ compelling Judge Lanzinger to produce the criminal complaint or else dismiss the judgment against him. The court of appeals dismissed the petition sua sponte on the grounds that Appellant failed to comply with the filing requirements of Ohio Rev. Code 2969.25(C). The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that because Appellant did not comply with the requirements of section 2969.25(C) the court of appeals properly dismissed his complaint. View "State ex rel. Powe v. Lanzinger" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the court of appeals dismissing Appellant’s complaint for a writ of mandamus for failure to pay the filing fee but modified the judgment to hold that the dismissal was without prejudice, holding that the mandamus complaint should have been dismissed on the basis that it was filed by non-licensed attorney. Sean Swain, then an inmate and the authorized agent for the Army of the Twelve Monkeys, an unincorporated nonprofit association, filed a complaint on behalf of the Army for a writ of mandamus in the court of appeals against the Warren County Court of Common Pleas alleging that the common pleas court failed in its duty to provide the Army with copies of filings in a pending lawsuit that the Army had filed against the Warren Correctional Institution. The court of appeals dismissed the complaint with prejudice. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding that the mandamus complaint that Swain filed on behalf of the Army violated Ohio Rev. Code 4705.01 and should have been dismissed on that basis. View "State ex rel. Army of the Twelve Monkeys v. Warren County Court of Common Pleas" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court affirmed the court of appeals’ denial of Appellant’s petition for a writ of mandamus in this workers’ compensation case, holding that the Industrial Commission did not abuse its discretion by concluding that res judicata barred Appellant’s motion to recalculate his average weekly wage (AWW). In challenging the calculation of his AWW, Appellant requested that the Commission forgo the standard statutory formal and to instead calculate his AWW using a method that would do him “substantial justice,” as statutorily permitted in cases of “special circumstances.” The Commission denied the motion, first on the merits and second on grounds of res judicata. The court of appeals denied Appellant’s petition for a writ of mandamus, concluding that Appellant had not established special circumstances. The Supreme Court affirmed the denial of the writ solely on the basis of res judicata, holding that the Commission did not abuse its discretion when it concluded that the issue of special circumstances was previously decided and therefore res judicata. View "State ex rel. Tantarelli v. Decapua Enterprises, Inc." on Justia Law