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Law digest – 4/24/14

MARYLAND COURT OF APPEALS 

Contracts, Laches: Although the circuit court correctly determined that the plaintiffs established standing to bring their lawsuit, the plaintiffs’ claim was barred by the doctrine of laches, and the judgment of the circuit court was accordingly vacated and the case remanded with instructions to dismiss. State Center, LLC v. Lexington Charles Limited Partnership, No. 12, Sept. Term, 2013. RecordFax No. 14-0327-20, 161 pages.

Family Law, Sibling visitation: Before a court may order that a sibling, whether full, half, or Child in Need of Assistance, have visitation with another sibling against that sibling’s parent’s wishes, the court must make a threshold finding of parental unfitness or exceptional circumstances indicating that a lack of sibling visitation will have a substantial deleterious effect on the sibling with whom visitation is sought. In re Victoria C., No. 15, Sept. Term, 2013. RecordFax No. 14-0327-21, 44 pages.

Labor & Employment, Wage garnishment: Employee had a direct cause of action under state law against her employer for applying an incorrect standard in calculating wages that were exempt from garnishment, which was the greater of: (1) 75% of the disposable wages due; or (2) 30 times the minimum hourly wage under the FLSA; however, the circuit court did not abuse its discretion in refusing to certify the case as a class action. Marshall v. Safeway, Inc., No. 56, Sept. Term, 2013. RecordFax No. 14-0326-21 , 34 pages.

Premises Liability, Local Government Tort Claims Act: Oral notification to the city’s property manager that the plaintiff had an elevated blood-lead level did not constitute substantial compliance with the notice requirement of the Local Government Tort Claims Act; however, the circuit court did not abuse its discretion in concluding that plaintiff showed good cause for waiver of compliance with the notice requirement. Housing Authority of Baltimore City v. Woodland, No. 18, Sept. Term, 2013. RecordFax No. 14-0326-20, 38 pages.

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