This Week's Cases

Moranko v. Downs Racing LP, PICS Case No. 15-1022 (Pa. Super. June 10, 2015) Panella, J. (24 pages).

Because a bailment was created when a vehicle is given over to valet services, the valet service was not liable for resulting injuries when returning the vehicle to a visibly intoxicated driver. Summary judgment affirmed.

Nadrowski v. Velazquez, PICS Case No. 15-1034 (C.P. Monroe April 7, 2015) Harlacher Sibum, J. (7 pages).

Plaintiff, injured while a passenger in an automobile, lacked standing to file suit against the tortfeasor's insurers since she did not allege that she had third-party beneficiary status or that the insureds were insolvent. Defendant-insurers' motion for summary judgment granted.

Clipper Pipe & Serv., Inc. v. Ohio Cas. Ins. Co., PICS Case No. 15-0974 (Pa. June 15, 2015) Saylor, C.J. (10 pages).

Upon accepting a certified question from the Third Circuit, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court determined that the Contractor and Subcontractor Payment Act does not apply to a construction project where the owner is a government entity. Certified question answered.

Commonwealth v. Carrasquillo, PICS Case No. 15-0975 (Pa. June 15, 2015) Saylor, C.J.; Stevens, J., concurring (18 pages).

The court clarified that a common pleas court need not accept a bare assertion of innocence as a fair and just reason for withdrawal of a guilty plea, thereby rejecting a bright-line rule prohibiting trial courts from assessing the credibility of an "assertion of innocence." Reversed and remanded.

Commonwealth v. Martz, PICS Case No. 15-1014 (Pa. Super. June 24, 2015) Shogan, J. (17 pages).

The trial court did not err in allowing defendant to assert the common law infancy defense because it remains applicable in criminal proceedings where a defendant is being prosecuted for conduct committed before the age of 14 years. Reversed and remanded.

Commonwealth v. Diego, PICS Case No. 15-1013 (Pa. Super. June 23, 2015) Bender, J. (22 pages).

In this case of first impression, the Superior Court held that an iPad is an electronic, mechanical or other device that does not fall within the telephone exception under Pennsylvania's Wiretapping and Electronic Surveillance Control Act. Reversed and remanded.

Lucas v. Daum, PICS Case No. 15-1019 (Pa. Super. June 15, 2015) (memorandum) Bowes, J. (22 pages).

Because both husband's and wife's pensions had vested, it was error for the master to value the parties' contributions to their pensions rather than use the present value of the defined benefit portions. Order of the trial court reversed.

N.T. v. F.F., PICS Case No. 15-0983 (Pa. Super. June 15, 2015) Strassburger, J. (12 pages).

The hiring of a private investigator in Pennsylvania to locate a party for service in child custody action was insufficient contact with Pennsylvania to support personal jurisdiction, where the minimal contacts were unrelated to the present cause of action. Order of the trial court reversed.

Hansler v. Lehigh Valley Hosp. Network, PICS Case No. 15-1030 (3d Cir. June 22, 2015) Fuentes, J. (25 pages).

Upon receipt of a medical leave certification that is vague, ambiguous or nonresponsive, an employer is required to: (1) inform the employee that the certification is insufficient; (2) state in writing what additional information is required; and (3) provide the employee the opportunity to cure the certification within seven days. Reversed and remanded.

Marsden v. Shirakawa, PICS Case No. 15-1031 (E.D. Pa. June 23, 2015) Kearney, J. (26 pages).

An employee who admitted that the employer's discipline steps were not based on his age and raised the specter of age-based discipline after refusing to prepare a required personal improvement plan, provided sufficient evidence of genuine issues of material fact in his claim for retaliation. Motion for summary judgment granted and denied in part.

M.D. v. Ski Shawnee, PICS Case No. 15-1032 (M.D. Pa. June 23, 2015) Munley, J. (20 pages).

A 9-year-old, novice skier who lacks knowledge about the risks associated with snowmaking machines may not assume the risk of collision with one. Ski resort's motion for summary judgment, based on its claim that the skier assumed the risk of injury and it did not owe a duty, denied.

Dowling v. Pa. Psychiatric Inst., PICS Case No. 15-0980 (Pa. Super. June 8, 2015) (memorandum) Bowes, J. (27 pages).

A promise by a search firm, acting as agent for defendant corporation, that plaintiff's submission of his résumé for consideration for CEO would be kept confidential to the search committee, created a valid confidentiality agreement that was breached. Order of the trial court reversed.

Donaldson v. Amerikohl Mining, Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0979 (Pa. Super. June 9, 2015) (memorandum) Fitzgerald, J. (7 pages).

The trial court erred in ruling that blasting was not a continuous tort as a matter of law by failing to conduct any analysis of the facts of the case, where a determination of whether an injury to property constituted a permanent change or continuous trespass required the analysis of multiple factors. Order of the trial court vacated.

Commonwealth v. Hvizda, PICS Case No. 15-0978 (Pa. June 15, 2015) Saylor, C.J.; Stevens, J., concurring (8 pages).

While pre-sentence withdrawals of guilty pleas should be liberally accepted in the interest of protecting defendants' rights to trial, a bare assertion of innocence was not, in and of itself, a sufficient reason for a court to grant a withdrawal of a guilty plea. Order of the Superior Court reversed; matter remanded for reinstatement of the judgment of sentence.

Commonwealth v. Sodomsky, PICS Case No. 15-0943 (Pa. Super. June 5, 2015) Musmanno, J. (26 pages).

The court ruled that a police search of computer files following computer technicians observing child pornography while working on the computer violated defendant's Fourth Amendment rights against warrantless search, distinguishing the digital data stored on the computer from the computer itself. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Commonwealth v. Tyson, PICS Case No. 15-0944 (Pa. Super. June 10, 2015) Gantman, P.J. (35 pages).

Appellant's prior rape conviction was admissible under the common plan or scheme and absence of mistake exceptions in order to refute appellant's contention that he believed he had engaged in consensual intercourse with the victim. Order reversed; case remanded.

In re Involuntary Termination of Parental Rights to L.A.M., PICS Case No. 15-0901 (Pa. Super. June 3, 2015) (memorandum) Strassburger, J. (13 pages).

The court ruled that involuntary termination of mother's parental rights was proper where evidence existed of continued drug abuse by mother, who had also moved to North Carolina and had since made little effort to maintain contact with children. Decrees affirmed.

K.T. v. L.S. F/K/A L.R., PICS Case No. 15-0982 (Pa. Super. June 17, 2015) Gantman, P.J. (84 pages).

The trial court's failure to engage in thoughtful analysis of each of the statutory factors regarding an award of partial physical custody/visitation to grandparents necessitated a reversal of the trial court's decision to deny partial physical custody to grandparents. Order of the trial court reversed.

Yocabet v. UPMC Presbyterian, PICS Case No. 15-0988 (Pa. Super. June 5, 2015) Bowes, J. (39 pages).

In this medical malpractice suit, the trial court erred in holding that facility's executive vice-president's presentation to the facility's board of directors was not a discussion with legal counsel and was not subject to attorney-client privilege or peer review privilege. Affirmed in part, reversed in part and remanded for in camera review of the board meeting material for the asserted privileges.

U.S. v. Mastronardo, PICS Case No. 15-1007 (E.D. Pa. June 17, 2015) DuBois, J. (5 pages).

It would be an abuse of the court's discretion to deny the government's motion to dismiss an indictment against the least culpable of three family members charged with aggravated structuring, when the government provided an appropriate explanation and the reasons advanced for moving to dismiss were not contrary to the public interest. Motion to dismiss indictment granted, without prejudice.

Brown v. Am. Home Prod., PICS Case No. 15-1004 (E.D. Pa. June 17, 2015) Bartle, J. (13 pages).

When medical experts provide conflicting medical opinions in a products liability case, a court can rely on the opinion of a technical advisor. Plaintiff in a nationwide class-action case established a "reasonable medical basis" for his request for Matrix A-1, Level II compensation for valvular heart disease in the amount of approximately $248,516.

Lee v. AMR Corp., PICS Case No. 15-1006 (E.D. Pa. June 18, 2015) Buckwater, J. (10 pages).

Jurisdiction was vested in the district court as Article 19 of the Montreal Convention governed the claims of a plaintiff found to have suffered a "delay" in travel when defendant airline mistakenly denied her a boarding pass to Belize. Motion for remand order denied.

Boyington v. Percheron Field Servs., PICS Case No. 15-1003 (W.D. Pa. June 15, 2015) Gibson, J. (8 pages).

To obtain conditional certification of a collective action under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act, a plaintiff must make a modest factual showing and produce some evidence of a factual nexus between the manner in which the alleged company policy on payment of overtime affected the plaintiff and the manner in which the policy affected other, similarly situated, workers. Motion granted.

Drone Tech. v. Parrot, PICS Case No. 15-1005 (W.D. Pa. June 12, 2015) Schwab, J. (24 pages).

A court can award attorney fees to a successful party for litigating an "exceptional" case, pursuant to 35 U.S.C. §285. Defendants' "flagrant refusal" to comply with court orders and "dilatory and unreasonable conduct" merited a conclusion that the case was "exceptional."

Office of Disciplinary Counsel v. Perkel, PICS Case No. 15-0991 (Pa. May 27, 2015) per curiam (31 pages).

The Disciplinary Board recommended that Benjamin Hart Perkel be suspended on consent from the Bar of the Commonwealth for a period of two years retroactive to June 12, 2014.

Estate of Peters, PICS Case No. 15-0981 (Pa. Super. June 17, 2015) (memorandum) Bowes, J. (24 pages).

Fees charged by co-executrices were not excessive, where the orphans' court found that the executrices performed extensive work in accounting and liquidating decedent's extensive estate which included many unique assets. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Kirkpatrick v. Bureau of Prof'l and Occupational Affairs, PICS Case No. 15-0948 (Pa. Commw. June 10, 2015) Cohn Jubelirer, J. (16 pages).

State Board of Barber Examiners erred in revoking licensee's barber and barber management licensees for unethical conduct pursuant to §9(a)(5) of the Barber License Law after licensee pleaded nolo contendere to a charge of indecent assault because the commonwealth presented no evidence to show that the allegations to which licensee pled were related to his profession. Reversed.

Rohner v. Atkinson, PICS Case No. 15-0986 (Pa. Commw. June 10, 2015) Leavitt, J. (13 pages).

Trial court erred in dismissing zoning officer's whistleblower complaint in which he alleged he was fired for issuing negative reports on a construction project and refusing to issue a certificate of compliance, but the trial court correctly held that appellant was an at-will employee and not covered by a public policy exception to at-will employment. Affirmed in part and reversed in part.

Commonwealth v. Cicci, PICS Case No. 15-0941 (Pa. Commw. June 5, 2015) Friedman, J. (8 pages).

The court ruled that a borough was not required to impose a lien for unpaid assessments, but was also authorized to institute summary proceedings to recover unpaid assessments. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Belleville v. David Cutler Grp., PICS Case No. 15-0938 (Pa. Commw. June 10, 2015) Brobson, J. (32 pages).

The trial court did not err in holding that the plaintiff homeowners' claims challenging amendments to a planned community declaration were not time-barred by §5219(b) of the UPCA. Affirmed in part.

Village at Palmerton Assisted Living v. Workers' Comp. Appeal Bd., PICS Case No. 15-0987 (Pa. Commw. June 12, 2015) Cohn Jubelirer, J. (24 pages).

Workers' Compensation Appeals Board erred in holding that, pursuant to §306(a.2)(1), an employer's timely request for a claimant to submit to an IRE required the filing of form LIBC-766, receipt of the bureau's designation of an IRE physician and the filing of form LIBC-765 within the 60 day window. Reversed.

Quest Diagnostics Venture, LLC v. Commonwealth, PICS Case No. 15-0984 (Pa. Commw. June 9, 2015) Leadbetter, J. (15 pages).

The Board of Finance and Revenue properly affirmed the Board of Appeals' dismissal of petition for a franchise tax refund as untimely because petitioner filed the refund petition more than three years after the date on which petitioner paid the tax. Affirmed.

Bost-Pearson v. SEPTA, PICS Case No. 15-0985 (Pa. Commw. June 5, 2015) Leadbetter, J. (9 pages).

The trial court properly held that appellant, injured when the bus she was riding swerved to avoid prospective passengers at a bus stop, did not present evidence to satisfy the "jerk and jolt" doctrine because she presented no evidence of the unusual nature of the jolt or jerk or that any other passenger was affected. Affirmed.

Achilles Med. P.C. v. Carter, PICS Case No. 15-1001 (C.P. Monroe April 17, 2015) Williamson, J. (6 pages).

In this breach of contract action, the court exercised its discretion and permitted defendant to file an amended answer after finding that she was pro se, had complied with the spirit of attempting to amend and conform with the rules of court, and the amendment would not cause undue prejudice, but it ordered her to include the verification required by Pa.R.Civ.P. 1024. Plaintiff's preliminary objections dismissed as moot.

Trexler v. McDonald's Corp., PICS Case No. 15-0906 (Pa. Super. June 3, 2015) Stabile, J. (15 pages).

Trial court did not err in sustaining appellee's preliminary objections challenging service of process in a slip and fall that occurred in a McDonald's because appellants served the complaint on the manager, and not the franchise operator, of the restaurant. Affirmed.

Commonwealth v. Scaggs, PICS Case No. 15-0999 (C.P. Lawrence May 13, 2015) Motto, P.J. (12 pages).

Because defendant was not a juvenile at the time of her offense, Miller v. Alabama did not permit her to by-pass the one-year time limit to file a post-conviction relief petition and her petition was untimely. Defendant's motion for post-conviction relief denied.

Commonwealth v. Large, PICS Case No. 15-1000 (C.P. Lehigh April 20, 2015) Steinberg, J. (13 pages).

Under the totality of the circumstances, defendant's covert recording of his conversation with the director of nursing services and other employees did not violate the Wiretapping and Electronic Surveillance Control Act because there was no reasonable expectation of privacy. Plaintiff's petition for writ of habeas corpus granted.

Commonwealth v. Ostrander, PICS Case No. 15-0992 (C.P. Berks May 18, 2015) Yatron, J. (5 pages).

There was sufficient evidence for the jury to conclude beyond a reasonable doubt that appellant committed the crime of resisting arrest when he refused to descend from a fire escape, causing officers to climb the fire escape and apprehend him.

DeHoyos v. Geico Gen. Ins. Co., PICS Case No. 15-0997 (C.P. Monroe April 20, 2015) Williamson, J. (7 pages).

Because the $450,000 plaintiff received from the tortfeasor pursuant to the parties' high-low agreement was less than the tortfeasor's policy limits, there was no legal basis for her claim for UIM benefits from defendant, her auto insurer. Defendant's motion for partial judgment on the pleadings granted.

Meckel v. Lehigh Valley Health Network, PICS Case No. 15-0995 (C.P. Lehigh April 23, 2015) Reichley, J. (7 pages).

Summary judgment was granted to defendants in this premises liability action where there was no genuine issue of material fact that plaintiff did not look behind her while walking backward out of defendants' office suite.

Oltsmann v. Erie Ins. Co., PICS Case No. 15-0954 (C.P. Monroe April 10, 2015) Williamson, J. (7 pages).

Plaintiff's motion to enforce settlement was denied where the emails offered in support of his contention that a settlement was reached indicated there was no meeting of the minds as to its terms.

Linde v. Linde, PICS Case No. 15-0949 (Pa. Super. June 9, 2015) Olson, J. (34 pages).

Trial court properly ordered that resolutions taken at a special shareholders' meeting, of which appellant shareholder/director was not informed, were properly ratified at a subsequent properly noticed shareholder's meeting because the actions taken at the improperly noticed special shareholder's meeting were voidable, not void. Affirmed.

Balmoral Homeowners Maint. Corp. v. Pasquarello, PICS Case No. 15-0935 (Pa. Super. June 5, 2015) (memorandum) Olson, J. (10 pages).

The trial court did not err in sustaining defendants' preliminary objections and transferring this case where plaintiff sought to recover damages incurred in attempting to fulfill obligations under the parties' settlement agreement which contained a venue selection clause providing for further litigation in Delaware County. Affirmed.

Commonwealth v. Hankerson, PICS Case No. 15-0940 (Pa. Super. June 8, 2015) Donohue, J. (11 pages).

A mandatory minimum enhancement based on the jury's finding that appellant possessed a firearm during the commission of the offense was impermissible, due to the authorizing statute having been found unconstitutional. Judgment of sentence vacated; case remanded for resentencing.

Deaver v. Lemon, PICS Case No. 15-0896 (Pa. Super. May 22, 2015) (memorandum) Shogan, J. (11 pages).

The trial court erred in finding that wife had established an oral trust and that this trust was not marital property where the evidence indicated that wife had access to and control over the oral trust funds, which she had placed in the trust. Reversed and remanded.

In the Interest of C.M.H., PICS Case No. 15-0900 (Pa. Super. May 27, 2015) (memorandum) Bowes, J. (14 pages).

Father's inability or unwillingness to remedy his incapacity to parent child following his incarceration, combined with the lack of bond between father and child and the strong bond between child and her foster parents supported the determination to involuntarily terminate father's parental rights. Decree affirmed.

Wolfe v. Allstate Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co. PICS Case No. 15-0967 (3rd Cir. June 12, 2015) Rendell, J. (25 pages).

An insurer has no duty to consider the potential for a jury verdict for punitive damages when negotiating a settlement and punitive damages awarded against an insured in a personal injury suit are not recoverable in a later breach of contract or bad faith suit against the insurer. Judgment vacated.

L.B. Foster v. Barnhart, PICS Case No. 15-0965 (3d Cir. June 11, 2015) Rendell, J. (5 pages).

Participation in a company sales incentive plan can provide adequate consideration for signing a contract not to compete. Judgment of district court affirmed.

Speaking Truth to Power v. U.S. Nat'l Nuclear Sec. Admin., PICS Case No. 15-0966 (E.D. Pa. June 10, 2015) Bartle, J. (9 pages).

Plaintiff's request to amend its Freedom of Information Act complaint to add additional governmental agencies as defendants was denied as futile, because the proposed claims would fail to survive a motion to dismiss. Motion to amend complaint denied.

Collinson v. City of Phila., PICS Case No. 15-0964 (E.D. Pa. June 9, 2015) Jones, J. (14 pages).

A police officer can be legally responsible as a bystander, if the officer refuses to intervene to prevent another officer's use of excessive force. Allegations of "bystander liability" against officers who allegedly did not observe police officer's fight with a civilian dismissed.

Chung v. Wyndham Vacation Resorts, PICS Case No. 15-0963 (M.D. Pa. June 15, 2015) Mariani, J. (8 pages).

A court can approve a settlement that is fair and reasonable considering the significant risk of proving liability, if the suit proceeds to trial. Collective action settlement in the amount of $180,000 approved in a Fair Labor Standards Act case.

Fitness Essentials, LLC v. Nill, PICS Case No. 15-0898 (Pa. Super. June 2, 2015) (memorandum) Lazarus, J. (14 pages).

A non-compete clause in an independent contractor agreement was enforceable, finding that appellant contractor knowingly and willingly entered into independent contractor agreements with restrictive covenants and held that an independent contractor relationship was sufficiently analogous to an employment relationship. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Gordon v. Herman, PICS Case No. 15-0946 (Pa. Super. June 9, 2015) (memorandum) Fitzgerald, J. (17 pages).

Trial court did not abuse its discretion in entering a default judgment on the issue of liability as a discovery sanction in a legal malpractice case and did not err in awarding damages for the attorney's failure to follow instructions for the allocation of interest and principal in a shareholder's agreement resulting in appellees' inability to claim interest deductions on tax forms. Affirmed.

B.B. v. Dep't of Public Welfare, PICS Case No. 15-0937 (Pa. Commw. June 10, 2015) Friedman, J. (8 pages).

The Secretary of the Department of Public Welfare abused her discretion when she adopted the Bureau of Hearings and Appeals' determination that petitioner's counsel was required to submit, in addition to his own testimony, additional evidence to verify he had a medical emergency that prohibited him from timely filing an appeal for petitioner. Reversed.

Arneson v. Wolf, PICS Case No. 15-0934 (Pa. Commw. June 10, 2015) McCullough, J. (76 pages).

The executive director of the Office of Open Records was meant to be independent from the executive branch and, therefore, insulated from the state governor's constitutional power to remove an appointee at-will. Petition for summary relief granted.

Gibraltar Rock, Inc. v. New Hanover Twp., PICS Case No. 15-0945 (Pa. Commw. June 5, 2015) McCullough, J. (14 pages).

Trial court properly granted declaratory relief in favor of appellee and properly held that township's storm water management ordinance was preempted by the Pennsylvania Noncoal Surface Mining Conservation and Reclamation Act because the SMO regulated "surface mining" as defined in the Noncoal Act and was thus, preempted. Affirmed.

City of Phila. v. Perfetti, PICS Case No. 15-0939 (Pa. Commw. June 8, 2015) Simpson, J. (21 pages).

A property owner was not entitled to a pre-deprivation hearing for the imposition of a municipal lien for nonpayment of utilities where payment for municipal services constituted a compelling governmental interest. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Barnabei v. Chadds Ford Twp. Zoning Hearing Bd., PICS Case No. 15-0936 (Pa. Commw. June 10, 2015) Brobson, J. (14 pages).

Petitioners were prohibited from operating a catering business out of their home because the operation of such a business was not an accessory use customarily incidental to use as a residence; therefore, they could not rent out their property and give greater property rights to a commercial tenant. Affirmed.

Hutto v. Phila. Parking Auth., PICS Case No. 15-0947 (Pa. Commw. June 9, 2015) Leavitt, J. (11 pages).

Trial court relied on competent evidence to find that bike rider, struck by tow truck owned and operated by the Philadelphia Parking Authority, suffered permanent injury and was entitled to damages for pain and suffering. Affirmed.

Santiago v. Abuiso, PICS Case No. 15-0953 (C.P. Monroe April 16, 2015) Williamson, J. (8 pages).

Improper service of the writ of summons did not toll the statute of limitations in this motor vehicle negligence case.

Rosenthal v. Bane, PICS Case No. 15-0916 (C.P. Allegheny May 18, 2015) Hertzberg, J. (6 pages).

Defendant failed to produce a prima facie case to support striking or opening judgment after he had failed to challenge an arbitration award within 30 days.

Brown v. Phila., PICS Case No. 15-0956 (C.P. Philadelphia May 12, 2015) Keogh, J. (3 pages).

There was no cause to set aside a sheriff s sale based on the sheriff's delay in deeding the property to the purchaser.

Conestoga Bank v. Tioga Inv., LLC, PICS Case No. 15-0917 (C.P. Philadelphia May 12, 2015) Glazer, J. (6 pages).

The bank timely filed its petition to establish the fair market value of real property acquired through a sheriff's auction within six months after delivery of the corrective deed.

Commonwealth v. Young, PICS Case No. 15-0958 (C.P. Lycoming May 12, 2015) Gray, J. (4 pages).

The commonwealth's interest in protecting the health and welfare of its citizens and maintaining order and safety in its prisons outweighed an inmate's diminished right to refuse medical treatment. Plaintiffs' motion for permanent injunction authorizing involuntary administration of renal dialysis granted.

Commonwealth v. Corliss, PICS Case No. 15-0960 (C.P. Monroe April 16, 2015) Williamson, J. (14 pages).

On pro se defendant's amended petition for habeas corpus, the court concluded that Megan's Law IV was applicable to defendant, even though he was not serving a sentence and was not on probation or parole when it was enacted. Petition for writ of habeas corpus denied.

Robinson v. Wolters Kluwer Health Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0962 (C.P. Philadelphia May 1, 2015) Bernstein, J. (17 pages).

In this products liability action alleging that plaintiff's birth defects were caused by Zoloft taken by her mother during pregnancy, the issues defendants raised regarding plaintiff's expert's methodology at the Frye hearing were appropriate for cross-examination but preclusion was not warranted. Defendants' motion to preclude denied.

Pocono Farms Country Club Ass'n, Inc. v. Lewandowski, PICS Case No. 15-0957 (C.P. Monroe May 6, 2015) Williamson, J. (9 pages).

Defendant homeowner had to pay his ratable share of costs for services pursuant to the bylaws, rules and regulations of plaintiff homeowners' association.

Warner v. Lycoming Cnty. Tax Claim Bureau, PICS Case No. 15-0959 (C.P. Lycoming May 5, 2015) Gray, J. (4 pages).

Because the property owner reasonably and justifiably relied on the statement of the Tax Claim Bureau's employee that he had until Sept. 24, 2014, to pay the tax delinquency and tendered payment of the delinquency prior to that date, the tax sale, which occurred prior to that date, had to be set aside. Property owner's timely objections to the upset tax sale granted.

Smith v. Sanofi Pasteur, Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0955 (C.P. Monroe April 28, 2015) Williamson, J. (5 pages)

Summary judgment was inappropriate in this personal injury case where genuine issues of material fact remained as to whether a defect existed in defendant's equipment and if so, whether the defect was a substantial factor in causing plaintiff's injury.

Estate of Sipos, PICS Case No. 15-0961 (C.P. Philadelphia March 9, 2015) Herron, J. (10 pages).

The beneficiary designation in the deceased's IRA was not changed by his will as there was no demonstration that he had made reasonable efforts to comply with the policy terms governing change of beneficiary. Request for order directing the proceeds to be turned over in accordance with the will denied.

Campisi v. Campisi, PICS Case No. 15-0894 (Pa. Super. May 28, 2015) (memorandum) Shogan, J. (18 pages).

The trial court did not err in admitting a notary register into evidence through the testimony of an attorney since the attorney's testimony regarding the regular business activity of notarizing legal documents provided sufficient information to justify a presumption of trustworthiness. Affirmed.

Healey v. Wells Fargo N.A., PICS Case No. 15-0920 (C.P. Lackawanna May 12, 2015) Nealon, J. (10 pages).

Because two of defendant's out-of-state employees were corporate officers and another was a managing agent by virtue of his title and functions relating to this litigation and a related administrative appeal, they could be deposed without a subpoena pursuant to Rule 4007.1. Defendant's appeal denied; plaintiffs' motion to compel depositions granted.

Orman v. Mortg. I.T., PICS Case No. 15-0905 (Pa. Super. June 2, 2015) Mundy, J. (10 pages).

Trial court correctly held that husband who had signed a mortgage was an indispensable party to an action to quiet title and reform the mortgage but trial court erred in entering judgment in the case because the court lacked jurisdiction to enter judgment in favor of any party due to the lack of an indispensable party. Vacated and remanded.

Calabrese v. Zeager, PICS Case No. 15-0893 (Pa. Super. June 1, 2015) (memorandum) Jenkins, J. (17 pages).

The law of the case doctrine barred consideration of defendant's notice argument where the court had considered and decided the notice argument on a prior appeal. Affirmed in part; reversed in part.

U.S. Bank, N.A. v. Pautenis, PICS Case No. 15-0907 (Pa. Super. May 29, 2015) Donohue, J. (34 pages).

In mortgage foreclosure action, trial court erred in concluding that bank's post-trial motion was untimely but the verdict in favor of homeowner was correct because trial court correctly refused to take judicial notice of bank's acquisition of the mortgage. Reversed in part and affirmed in part.

Commonwealth v. Caldwell, PICS Case No. 15-0895 (Pa. Super. May 29, 2015) Jenkins, J. (25 pages).

Defendant's challenge to the imposition of his consecutive sentences as unduly excessive, together with his claim that the trial court failed to consider his rehabilitative needs, presented a substantial question but his claims on appeal lacked merit. Affirmed.

In re K.L., PICS Case No. 15-0902 (Pa. Super. June 2, 2015) (memorandum) Fitzgerald, J. (11 pages).

The court ruled that a gun gesture by a juvenile constituted a terroristic threat where juvenile's teacher previously instructed him to refrain from the gesture, despite juvenile's lack of verbal threat or violent history, where ability to carry out a threat or belief that the threat would be carried out was not an element of the offense. Dispositional order affirmed.

Babb v. Geisinger Clinic, PICS Case No. 15-0892 (Pa. Super. June 3, 2015) (memorandum) Stabile, J. (38 pages).

Plaintiff was prohibited by the doctrine of res judicata from re-litigating his conspiracy claims where a federal court of competent jurisdiction already entered a final judgment resolving the issues of conspiratorial conduct and improper motives by defendants in terminating plaintiff. Affirmed in part.

Streamline Bus. Serv. LLC v. Vidible, Inc. PICS Case No.15-0927 (E.D. Pa. June 2, 2015) Baylson, J. (13 pages).

Given the general rule that a shareholder or parent corporation is not personally liable for corporate or subsidiary obligations, insufficient facts were pled to show AOL Inc. was liable for the pre-acquisition conduct of a subsidiary to state a claim against it. Motion to dismiss granted and denied in part.

Ruff v. Long, PICS Case No. 15-0926 (E.D.Pa. June 1, 2015) Kearney, J. (13 pages).

An off-duty, plainclothed police sergeant who went to a police station where he was unknown to surrender guns as part of an amnesty program was not sufficiently imbued with elements of communication to be deemed expressive conduct for a First Amendment retaliation claim. Motion for partial summary judgment granted.

Ford v. Lehigh Valley Rest. Grp. Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0886 (C.P. Lackawanna April 24, 2015) Nealon, J. (27 pages).

In this action alleging that defendant had improperly included ineligible employees in a tip pooling arrangement in violation of the Minimum Wage Act, the court found that the degree of direct customer interaction and service was relevant in deciding whether an employee was entitled to participate in a tip pool. Defendant's preliminary objections overruled.

Forty Seven Hundred L.P. v. David Whitnack Distrib. Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0884 (C.P. Philadelphia May 15, 2015) McInerney, J. (8 pages) .

The order imposing monetary sanctions for failure to comply with a discovery order was interlocutory and not immediately appealable. Plaintiff's appeal should be quashed.

Commonwealth v. Bland, PICS Case No. 15-0866 (Pa. May 26, 2015) Saylor, C.J.; Baer, J. (concurring), Todd, J. (dissenting) (38 pages).

Superior Court erred in suppressing appellee's confession to a murder made six days after he signed a written invocation of his Miranda rights and after he was given Miranda warnings by the interrogating officer because an invocation of the Miranda-based right to counsel had to be made upon or after actual or imminent commencement of in-custody interrogation. Reversed.

Sch. Dist. of Phila. v. Workers' Compensation Appeal Bd., PICS Case No. 15-0862 (Pa. May 216, 2015) Baer, J. (23 pages).

An injured employee was not entitled to a written notice of ability to return to work before being offered alternative employment where the employee had not yet filed a claim petition or received benefits, and the employer in this case had not conceded the existence of a work-related injury. Order of the Commonwealth Court affirmed.

TeleTracking Techs., Inc. v. Gori, PICS Case No. 15-0864 (Pa. Super. May 28, 2015) (memorandum) Lazarus, J. (18 pages).

Appellee minority shareholders were permitted to consummate the sale of their stock to a bona fide third-party offeror after the 120-day period for exercise of appellant corporation's right of first refusal, where the inability to consummate the transaction was the result of appellant's intentional engagement in protracted and fruitless litigation. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Smith v. Costulas, PICS Case No. 15-0863 (Pa. Super. May 27, 2015) (memorandum) Allen, J. (16 pages).

Appellants had waived their issues for their deliberate failure to have a complete certified records of lower court proceedings transmitted to the court, thereby hampering their ability to conduct meaningful review. Judgment affirmed.

Santander Bank, N.A. v. Law Offices of Kenneth M. Kapner, P.C., PICS Case No. 15-0861 (Pa. Super. May 28, 2015) (memorandum) Fitzgerald, J. (18 pages).

A confession of judgment and warrant of attorney in a promissory note/guarantee was enforceable after the execution of a modification agreement where the court held that the MA's inclusion of all other unmodified terms from the note/guarantee was legally sufficient to bind borrower. Order affirmed in part and reversed in part.

BOKF, N.A. v. First Nat'l Bank of Pa., PICS Case No. 15-0855 (Pa. Super. May 27, 2015) (memorandum) Fitzgerald, J. (16 pages).

Plaintiff lender could not proceed with an equitable subrogation claim against defendant where plaintiff was not substituting another entity, but simply sought to substitute itself, and where plaintiff did not establish all four criteria for an equitable subrogation claim. Affirmed.

Sesay v. Attorney Gen. of U.S., PICS Case No. 15-0874 (3rd Cir. May 26, 2015) Krause, J. (18 pages).

Addressing a first impression issue, the Third Circuit ruled that, absent a waiver from the Executive Branch, the INA precludes asylum or withholding of removal for any alien who provided material support to a terrorist group, voluntarily or involuntarily. Petition for review denied.

Bonkowski v. Oberg Indus., PICS Case No. 15-0871 (3d Cir. May 22, 2015) Cowen, J. (57 pages).

The Third Circuit adopted a clear, "bright-line" calendar test that, for purposes of the Family and Medical Leave Act, a stay in a hospital overnight takes place if a patient stays at the hospital for a substantial period of time, from one calendar day to the next calendar day, as measured by the times of admission and discharge. Affirmed.

Office of Disciplinary Counsel v. Henderson, PICS Case No. 15-0885 (Pa. Feb. 12, 2015) per curiam (14 pages).

Although respondent's conduct in knowingly conspiring to commit, committing and concealing bankruptcy fraud supported his disbarment, his cooperation with law enforcement and disciplinary authorities was sufficient mitigation to permit a step-down to a five-year suspension, retroactive to the date of his emergency temporary suspension. Respondent attorney suspended on consent for five years, retroactive to Aug. 9, 2012.

Office of Disciplinary Counsel v. Rowlands, PICS Case No. 15-0880 (Pa. Jan. 30, 2015) per curiam (10 pages).

Respondent was admitted to practice law in Pennsylvania in 1963. Respondent maintained an attorney-client relationship with Fern Knoll Cemetery Association from 1994 until 2011. During his representation, respondent had sole access to Fern Knoll's bank accounts. Respondent took regular, substantial loans from Fern Knoll without their knowledge. No written documentation or loan agreements were created, no collateral was offered, no interest rate was paid and no repayment terms were agreed upon.

Commonwealth v. Selenski, PICS Case No. 15-0867 (Pa. Super. May 27, 2015) Donohue, J. (7 pages).

Trial court relied on then existing ban in precluding expert testimony on human memory, perception and the accuracy of eyewitness testimony in criminal case, but Pennsylvania Supreme Court had overturned that ban. Remanded for proceedings consistent with the new Supreme Court rule.

Morgan v. Morgan, PICS Case No. 15-0858 (Pa. Super. May 28, 2015) Stabile, J. (12 pages).

The Superior Court awarded mother attorney fees where it found that father's appeal was wholly frivolous and included motions raising issues that had already been resolved. Affirmed and remanded for calculation of attorney fees.

A.L.-S. v. B.S., PICS Case No. 15-0865 (Pa. Super. May 27, 2015) Lazarus, J. (18 pages).

Trial court erred in interpreting the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Enforcement Act and in refusing to accept jurisdiction of a child custody matter, where the original custody order was made by an Ohio court but both parents and the children subsequently moved to Pennsylvania because the trial court misconstrued the "home state" rule. Reversed and remanded.

DeFrancesco v. Lehigh Valley Health Network, Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0868 (Pa. Super. May 26, 2015) Fitzgerald, J. (24 pages).

Trial court did not err in entering judgment for defendant doctors and hospital in a medical malpractice action after the jury found defendants were not negligent in failing to diagnose decedent's aortic dissection because trial court did not abuse its discretion in denying a request to strike a potential juror. Affirmed.

Mott Cemetery Ass'n v. Kalinowski, PICS Case No. 15-0859 (Pa. Super. May 27, 2015) (memorandum) Stabile, J. (8 pages).

The court ruled that a cemetery association could, pursuant to deed, acquire additional acreage where the trial court found that the only restriction on the association was that the land be used for cemetery purposes. Judgment affirmed.

In re Estate of Dixon, PICS Case No. 15-0529 (Pa. Super. May 28, 2015) (memorandum) Stabile, J. (4 pages).

While Pa.R.App.P. 342 provides that an order confirming an account is appealable as of right, the order on appeal here was not final within the meaning of the rule where it anticipated confirmation after a slightly revised account. Appeal quashed.

Kyler v. Myers, PICS Case No. 15-0869 (Pa. Super. May 26, 2015) (memorandum) Bender, J. (6 pages).

Trial court properly enjoined appellant from hindering and obstructing appellee's use of a private alley because the evidence of record showed that appellant had no ownership interest in the alley. Affirmed.

Faulk v. Phila. Clerk of Courts, PICS Case No. 15-0854 (Pa. Commw. May 28, 2015) Simpson, J. (10 pages).

In the interest of internal consistency among the provisions of the RTKL and to avoid an absurd result, the Commonwealth Court properly construed §1301(a) of the law to trigger review by a Chapter 13 court only after an appeal to an appeals officer under §1102. Affirmed.

Bagwell v. Pa. Office of Attorney Gen., PICS Case No. 15-0860 (Pa. Commw. May 27, 2015) Friedman, J. (7 pages).

Records of an attorney's non-criminal investigation were exempt from disclosure under the Right-to-Know Law because said records were privileged under the attorney work product doctrine. Determination of the OAG affirmed.

Duke Energy Fayette II, LLC v. Fayette Cnty. Bd. of Assessment Appeals, PICS Case No. 15-0856 (Pa. Commw. May 28, 2015) Covey, J. (12 pages).

The trial court erred in determining that it was reasonable to reassess petitioner's premises after the expiration of the premises' Keystone Opportunity Zone status rather than when improvements to the property were made and that the subject reassessment did not constitute a "spot assessment." Reversed and remanded.

Orwig v. PennDOT, PICS Case No. 15-0877 (C.P. Lycoming April 28, 2015) McCoy, J. (4 pages).

Appellee would be prejudiced by a driver's license suspension imposed 10 years after the underlying conviction where the delay was attributable to the Department of Transportation.

AW v. CW, PICS Case No. 15-0887 (C.P. Lycoming May 15, 2015) Reynolds McCoy, J. (5 pages).

Considering factors relevant to the children's best interest, including the need for stability and continuity, the court determined that the children should continue to attend school in the district in which defendant-father resided. Plaintiff's petition for special relief to change their school district denied.

Hamilton v. Redev. Auth. of Lawrence Cnty., PICS Case No. 15-0876 (C.P. Lawrence April 20, 2015) Piccione, J. (17 pages).

Plaintiff could not compel the commonwealth to allocate money to enable the Redevelopment Authority of Lawrence County to satisfy a money judgment entered against it.

Braverman v. Estate of Daniels, PICS Case No. 15-0888 (C.P. Philadelphia March 30, 2015) Dembe, J. (14 pages).

Finding that the deceased member of plaintiff-law firm converted company funds for his personal benefit and obtained unjust enrichment, and that defendants failed to present evidence to support their counterclaims, the court granted plaintiffs' motions for summary judgment.

Sutch v. Roxborough Mem. Hosp., PICS Case No. 15-0879 (C.P. Philadelphia May 15, 2015) Massiah-Jackson, J. (31 pages).

All motions for post-trial relief were denied in this twice-tried medical malpractice case resulting in a verdict for plaintiff.

In re Beal, PICS Case No. 15-0878 (C.P. Philadelphia May 4, 2015) Herron, J. (9 pages)

Decedent's widow, who had filed for divorce, lacked standing to challenge decedent's will because she failed to preserve her claim.

U.S. v. Edwards, PICS Case No. 15-0875 (E.D. Pa. May 29, 2015) Rufe, J. (8 pages).

In a first impression opinion following the Supreme Court's 2013 decision in Florida v. Jardines, the warrantless search of trash by police was found impermissible if it occurred on the curtilage of a home. Motion to suppress evidence was denied.

Cestra v. Mylan Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0873 (E.D. Pa., May 22, 2015) Conti, J. (7 pages).

Ruling on an apparent issue of first impression, the district court found that the antiretaliation provisions of the False Claim Act applied to an employer that allegedly discharged a worker after it discovered that the worker was a whistleblower in a qui tam action against a former employer.

Brooks v. Valley Day Sch., PICS Case No. 15-0872 (E.D. Pa. May 28, 2015) Buckwalter, J. (10 pages).

Discharging an employee who makes a legitimate request for FMLA leave may constitute interference with the employee's FMLA rights and retaliation against the employee. Motion to dismiss FMLA claims of employee who indicated that he might require another medical leave denied.

Monaco v. Temple Univ., PICS Case No. 15-0829 (Pa. Super. May 22, 2015) (memorandum) Fitzgerald, J. (33 pages).

The trial court did not err in allowing plaintiff to elicit from defendant's housekeeping employee testimony regarding certain anti-slip strips on steps other than those where plaintiff fell because the witness was allowed to testify as to the facts he observed. Affirmed.

Warrior Whitetails LLC v. Drotleff, PICS Case No. 15-0839 (C.P. Lawrence April 13, 2015) Motto, P.J. (14 pages).

In this action to recover the value of, and lost breeding fees from, a deer which ran into a fence and broke its neck after being spooked by defendant's trespassing dog, the court found that there was at least circumstantial evidence that the dog was the cause of the death and that dismissal of the action was not appropriate under the doctrine of spoliation. Defendant's motion for summary judgment denied.

Commonwealth v. K.M.-F., PICS Case No. 15-0828 (Pa. Super. May 22, 2015) per curiam (12 pages).

The juvenile court fully complied with Pa.R.App.P. Rule 1770 upon the filing of a petition for review and did not abuse its discretion in issuing an order for petitioner's out-of-home placement after his delinquency adjudication. Affirmed.

Horn v. Schappert, PICS Case No. 15-0818 (Pa. Super. May 13, 2015) (memorandum) Olson, J. (10 pages).

The court ruled that an indemnification and hold harmless provision of an escrow agreement did not insulate escrow agents from liability for their ordinary negligence, where the provision failed to explicitly stipulate that agents were to be indemnified from their negligence. Judgment affirmed.

Bank of Am., N.A. v. Velardi, PICS Case No. 15-0822 (Pa. Super. May 20, 2015) Ford Elliot, J. (12 pages).

Trial court properly granted summary judgment to bank in mortgage foreclosure action because appellant's claims of lack of subject matter jurisdiction, lack of standing, lack of endorsement on the note, and the failure to join indispensable parties were meritless. Affirmed.

Commonwealth v. Shickora, PICS Case No. 15-0824 (Pa. Super. May 21, 2015) Allen, J. (12 pages).

Trial court properly found appellant guilty of 18 counts of animal cruelty because the testimony and pictures showed that she wantonly neglected her dogs and cat by denying them access to clean and sanitary shelter and access to veterinary care. Affirmed.

Commonwealth v. Sitler, PICS Case No. 15-0825 (Pa. Super. May 21, 2015) Strassburger, J. (25 pages).

In this automobile accident case, trial court correctly precluded commonwealth from introducing evidence of appellee's prior homicide by vehicle conviction and evidence of his drinking three beers before the accident because of the insurmountable prejudice but erred in precluding the commonwealth from introducing evidence about false statements appellee made. Affirmed in part and vacated in part.

Bastian v. Sullivan, PICS Case No. 15-0827 (Pa. Super. May 22, 2015) Strassburger, J. (12 pages).

While two unnamed parties had a right or interest related to the claims at bar, which involved oil, gas and mineral rights for the subsurface estates of several parcels, they were not indispensable parties to this action because their rights were not "essential to the merits" of the case. Affirmed.

Dougherty v. Sch. Dist. of Phila., PICS Case No. 15-0831 (E.D. Pa. May 18, 2015) Sanchez, J. (19 pages).

A court can award economic damages to place a plaintiff in the position he would have been in, had he not engaged in protected First Amendment activity and been discharged, in retaliation. Court awarded back pay and front pay in the amount of $318,520.

Sizemore v. Hotwire Commc'ns LLC PICS Case No. 15-0834 (E.D. Pa. May 18, 2015) Yohn, J. (18 pages).

Because promissory estoppel does not apply when parties have entered into an enforceable agreement, the promissory estoppel claims of a telecommunications consultant failed as a matter of law, when the promise at issue was a nondisclosure agreement. Motion to dismiss granted and denied in part.

Navigators Ins. Co. v. Resnick Amsterdam Leshner, P.C. PICS Case No. 15-0833 (E.D. Pa. May 18, 2015) Savage, J. (12 pages).

Because both a claims made professional liability policy and established legal principles require the insurer to defend even groundless, false or fraudulent claims against its insured, the insurer in this declaratory judgment action was not relieved of its duty to defend its insureds, a public accounting firm and a certified public accountant. Cross motions for summary judgment granted and denied in part.

Brennan v. Cannella, PICS Case No. 15-0830 (E.D. Pa. May 12, 2015) Joyner, J. (8 pages).

Negligence per se cannot be used to create a private cause of action in connection with a private citizen's claims that defendants attacked a website and email accounts and stole her identity, in violation of Pennsylvania criminal statute. Defense motion to strike negligence per se counts granted.

Aponik v. Verizon Pa., Inc. PICS Case No. 15-0850 (E.D. Pa. May 21, 2015) Dalzell, J. (11 pages).

Worker who allegedly was disabled lacked a claim against employer for the personal injuries that he allegedly sustained when he was injured after his employer denied his request for a reasonable accommodation. The court granted Verizon's motion for partial summary judgment.

Gorman v. Steinborn, PICS Case No. 15-0832 (E.D. Pa. May 20, 2015) McHugh, J. (3 pages).

At a hearing in damages, a court can award non-economic damages, for pain and suffering that allegedly resulted from false accusations of being a convicted child molester. Damages in the amount of $3.04 million awarded.

In the Matter of Bohmueller, PICS Case No. 15-0843 (Pa. Jan. 23, 2015) per curiam (30 pages).

The Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania unanimously recommended that respondent Barry Bohmueller be disbarred from the practice of law due to his involvement in a living trust marketing scheme using non-lawyers.

Schmidt v. Schmidt, PICS Case No. 15-0814 (Pa. Super. May 21, 2015) (memorandum) Ott, J. (15 pages).

The trial court did not err or abuse its discretion in assigning father an earning capacity higher than his actual income where he had a history of making significantly more money and there was no evidence that he was obligated to remain at his current position. Affirmed.

Jimenez v. Adams, PICS Case No. 15-0819 (Pa. Super. May 12, 2015) Allen, J. (8 pages).

The court ruled that summary judgment was proper in a declaratory action seeking judgment that a non-offending parent could have an attorney of her choosing present at the interview of her daughter regarding potential abuse by the non-offending parent's husband. Order of the trial court affirmed.

In re M.L.O., PICS Case No. 15-0826 (Pa. Super. May 20, 2015) (memorandum) Gantman, P.J. (13 pages).

Trial court properly granted Department of Human Services' petition to involuntarily terminate father's parental rights because father, who was incarcerated and had been since before child's birth, could not provide care for the child in the foreseeable future and there was no strong parental bond between the father and the child. Affirmed.

Judge v. Wyo. Valley Health Care Sys., Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0820 (Pa. Super. May 18, 2015) (memorandum) Olson, J. (54 pages).

The court ruled that summary judgment was proper in a negligence action where plaintiff-appellants failed to establish a prima facie case, as defendant hospital owed no duty to decedent prior to her arrival. Judgment affirmed.

S & R Coal Co. v. Rausch Creek Land, L.P., PICS Case No. 15-0821 (Pa Super. May 15, 2015) (memorandum) Donohue, J. (24 pages).

A landowner could not change the placement of utility lines on its property away from a roadway easement where the terms of a stipulation between the landowner and the easement holder expressly provided that relocation would involve both the utility lines and the roadway. Order of the trial court affirmed in part and reversed in part.

Brodsky v. MJC Indus., Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0816 (Pa. Super. May 18, 2015) (memorandum) Wecht, J. (17 pages).

The court ruled that it lacked appellate jurisdiction over an appeal of partial summary judgment in favor of plaintiff resulting in a monetary award, where the complaint also contained counts seeking equitable relief, and the trial court failed to resolve defendant's challenge to subject matter jurisdiction for failure to join an indispensable party. Appeal quashed.

Criswell v. Atl. Richfield Co., PICS Case No. 15-0817 (Pa. Super. May 18, 2015) Donohue, J. (11 pages).

The court ruled that the trial court applied the wrong standard for negligence in concluding that appellant failed to put forth sufficient evidence to prove causation, by requiring proof that exposure was a substantial factor in causing injury. Order of the trial court reversed.

Price v. Pa. Bd. of Probation and Parole, PICS Case No. 15-0823 (Pa. Commw. May 20, 2015) Brobson, J. (12 pages).

Board of Probation and Parole did not lose jurisdiction by failing to issue an order declaring petitioner delinquent when it recommitted him as a convicted parole violator after he was convicted of two counts of driving under the influence while out on parole. Affirmed.

Truebright Science Acad. Charter Sch. v. Phila. Sch. Dist., PICS Case No. 15-0815 (Pa. Commw. May 15, 2015) Friedman, J. (10 pages).

Pursuant to the Charter School Law, the State Charter Appeal Board properly based its charter nonrenewal decision on petitioner's failure to meet performance standards in its charter, including its failure to make adequate yearly progress. Affirmed.

GMW Org. LLC v. Atlass, PICS Case No. 15-0841(C.P. Philadelphia April 21, 2015) McInerney, J. (26 pages).

Finding that application of the unambiguous contract language supported its conclusion regarding plaintiff's compensation and that it reasonably considered the entire contract in making its determinations, the court said its determination should be affirmed.

Arthur v. Bosque Disposal Systems, LLC. PICS CASE No. 15-0845 (C.P. Lycoming May 14, 2015) Gray, J. (4 pages).

Breach of contract and unjust enrichment may be pleaded as separate counts as alternative causes of action.

HSBC Bank USA, N.A. v. Stevens, PICS Case No. 15-0838 (C.P. Northampton April 22, 2015) Beltrami, J. (9 pages).

In this mortgage foreclosure action, plaintiff submitted sufficient proof that the pre-foreclosure notices were served in compliance with the statutory requirements and defendant's claims that the assignment to plaintiff was invalid, which were in essence claims that plaintiff lacked the capacity to sue, were waived as they were not raised on preliminary objections. Plaintiff's motion for summary judgment granted.

Commonwealth v. June. PICS Case No. 15-0844 (C.P. Lycoming April 25, 2015) Lovecchio, J. (7 pages).

On May 2, 2014, defendant was charged with seven counts of forgery and seven counts of identity theft. The charges arose out of a private criminal complaint filed against defendant by Thomas H. Ungard, Jr., defendant's stepfather. Ungard alleged that defendant completed applications for student loans and listed Ungard as a cosigner by signing Ungard's name without his authorization. The loans totaled approximately $60,000.

O'Brien v. Ohio Cas. Ins. Co. PICS Case No. 15-0842 (C.P. Lackawanna March 12, 2015) Minora, J. (11 pages).

The insureds' motion for declaratory judgment for coverage and indemnification was denied where an ATV accident occurred on a public road and not at an insured location.

MTPCS LLC v. Hollis, PICS Case No. 15-0840 (C.P. Montgomery April 7, 2015) Rogers, J. (21 pages).

The avoidance of a multiplicity of suits and unnecessary litigation delay and expense, and the interest in avoiding possible inconsistent verdicts in separate proceedings weighed in favor of litigating the disputes between the parties in one forum, despite the three forum selection clauses in the three contracts at issue. The order of the court so directing should be affirmed.

Scranton Cultural Ctr. at Masonic Temple v. Phila. Indem. Ins. Co., PICS Case No. 15-0803 (C.P. Lackawanna April 13, 2015) Minora, J. (15 pages).

A case conference sheet inadvertently produced by plaintiffs in discovery was not privileged as it was not a communication between plaintiff and its attorney for the purpose of providing legal services or advice. Defendant's appeal of order denying its motion to compel denied.

In the Matter of Hall, PICS Case No. 15-0802 (Pa. March 17, 2015) per curiam (14 pages).

Finding that the disbarred attorney's misconduct, homicide by vehicle/DUI, was not so egregious as to preclude reinstatement, a sufficient period of time had passed since the misconduct, and that he had shown reinstatement would not be detrimental to the integrity of the bar or subvert the public interest, the disciplinary board recommended reinstatement. Reinstatement granted.

Sweigart v. Sweigart, PICS Case No. 15-0787 (Pa. Super. May 14, 2015) (memorandum) Mundy, J. (8 pages).

In a case involving a decedent, executors and an alleged constructive trust, appeal was not premature and appellants' non-compliant Rule 1925(b) statement did not waive all issues because when appellants filed this notice of appeal, they were not ordered to file a new Rule 1925(b) statement. Case remanded to the trial court for the preparation of a supplemental trial opinion.

Senatore v. Hazakis, PICS Case No. 15-0785 (Pa. Super. April 29, 2015) (memorandum) Musmanno, J. (9 pages).

A construction contract was enforceable against partners in a partnership, specifically a partner absent from contract negotiations and a partner who joined afterwards where both partners testified that they were partners in and there was evidence that the partners accepted the offer to contract. Judgment affirmed.

Commonwealth v. Griffin, PICS Case No. 15-0777 (Pa. Super. May 12, 2015) Ford Elliott, J. (10 pages).

Where the nature of the objects found in defendant's pocket could not have been immediately apparent, the scope of the pat-down, which included a "fair amount of manipulation," exceeded lawful bounds and the physical evidence discovered should have been suppressed. Reversed and remanded.

In the Interest of N.A., PICS Case No. 15-0782 (Pa. Super. May 13, 2015) Lazarus, J. (10 pages).

The court ruled that, despite incorrectly invoking the doctrine of res judicata, the trial court properly denied a second dependency petition by not considering events occurring prior to a denied first petition. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Wolfe v. Ross, PICS Case No. 15-0790 (Pa. Super. May 7, 2015) Bowes, J. (54 pages).

Trial court properly found that the motor vehicle exclusion in party host's homeowner's insurance policy operated to exclude coverage for death of minor who attended party at host's house and crashed a bike, killing himself. Affirmed.

Monger v. Upper Leacock Twp., PICS Case No. 15-0783 (Pa. Super. April 28, 2015) Wecht, J. (11 pages).

The Commonwealth Court properly had jurisdiction over appellants' quasi-contract claims related to appellee township's denial of appellants' land use application pursuant to the MPC, where the court found that such claims were more frequently decided by the commonwealth court and that it had greater expertise in the subject matter. Case transferred.

Resch v. Krapf's Coaches, Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0811 (3rd Cir. May 12, 2015) Shwartz, J. (14 pages).

Plaintiff bus drivers were ineligible for the Fair Labor Standard Act overtime wages sought because the Motor Carrier Act Exemption to the FLSA and Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act applied to defendant motor coach company employer fell under the jurisdiction of the Department of Transportation and plaintiffs were members of a class of employees who could reasonably be expected to drive interstate routes as part of their duties. Summary judgment to defendant affirmed.

In the Matter of Conrad, PICS Case No. 15-0795 (Pa. March 17, 2015) per curiam (10 pages).

The Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania unanimously recommended that petitioner W. Christopher Conrad be reinstated to the practice of law based on peititioner's sobriety efforts.

Pa. Warehouse Beverage Stores, Inc. v. Brookhaven MZL, LP, PICS Case No. 15-0784 (Pa. Super. May 12, 2015) (memorandum) Stabile, J. (14 pages).

The court ruled that a commercial tenant was not entitled to exercise its option to extend its lease where the court found that the terms of the lease required tenant to be in compliance with all terms of the lease in order to exercise the option. Order of the trial court reversed.

Belgravia Condo. Ass'n v. 1811 Belgravia Assoc., PICS Case No. 15-0788 (Pa. Super. May 14, 2015) (memorandum) Jenkins, J. (16 pages).

Trial court did not err in denying engineer's post-verdict motions in case brought by condominium association for damages arising from engineer's alleged failures in inspecting a building. Affirmed.

Clark v. McCermott, PICS Case No. 15-0776 (Pa. Super. May 1, 2015) (memorandum) Jenkins, J. (11 pages).

Where plaintiff knew she was not entitled to any proceeds from an insurance policy that named her son as sole beneficiary, she had no right to rely on son's alleged promises to invest some proceeds for her benefit in order to establish fraud. Affirmed.

Harleysville Mut. Ins. Co. v. Solomon, PICS Case No. 15-0780 (Pa. Super. April 23, 2015) (memorandum) Wecht, J. (10 pages).

The trial court did not err in refusing to open a default judgment based on "equities" where defendant could not demonstrate that her petition was timely or that there was a reasonable explanation or excuse for her failure to file a timely responsive pleading. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Transystems, Inc. v. Phila. Wholesale Produce Mkt., PICS Case No. 15-0789 (Pa. Super. May 7, 2015) (memorandum) Shogan J. (8 pages).

Appellant's improper use of Lee Real Estate's plans for a fruit and produce terminal because after appellant settled the federal copyright case with Lee, appellant was entitled to no contribution from appellees under the Uniform Contribution Among Tortfeasors Act and appellant's state law negligent misrepresentation claim was time barred. Affirmed.

Keith v. Commonwealth, PICS Case No. 15-0775 (Pa. Commw. May 13, 2015) Leadbetter, J. (8 pages).

Petitioners, the Animal Legal Defense Fund and certain Pennsylvania residents with dogs, pled facts sufficient to establish their standing to bring this action against the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture and challenge regulations allegedly in conflict with Pennsylvania's Dog Law. Preliminary objections overruled.

Stark v. Equitable Gas Co., LLC, PICS Case No. 15-0778 (Pa. Commw. May 14, 2015) Pellegrini, P.J. (19 pages).

Petitioners presented compelling evidence, based upon actual measurements made in the field, that they owned property up to the center line of an unopened road when defendant installed a gas pipeline upon the property, thereby substantiating their claim of a de facto taking. Affirmed.

Iacurci v. Cnty. of Allegheny, PICS Case No. 15-0779 (Pa. Commw. May 14, 2015) Brobson, J. (11 pages).

Plaintiffs erroneously asserted that Act 20, which allows municipalities to recover penalties and costs associated with collecting unpaid taxes from delinquent taxpayers, imposed new taxes upon plaintiff property owners and impermissibly delegated taxing authority to a private entity. Affirmed.

Starwood Airport Realty v. Sch. Dist. of Phila., PICS Case No. 15-0786 (Pa. Commw. May 7, 2015) Cohn Jubelirer, J. (17 pages).

Trial court erred in denying property owner's motion to strike school district's praecipe to discontinue its appeal without prejudice of property's assessed value because allowing the discontinuance without property owner's consent thwarted the automatic appeal provision of §518.1 of the General County Assessment Law. Reversed.

Staffmore LLC v. Assessment and Treatment Alternatives Inc., PICS Case No. 15-0804 (C.P. Philadelphia March 27, 2015) McInerney, J. (15 pages).

In this breach of contract action, defendant's counterclaims/third-party claims for conversion failed as there had no deprivation of or interference with any rights to chattel and it had suffered no harm, its former employees had not breached a fiduciary duty of loyalty, and the tortious interference with contract claim failed because it had no contract with its clients. Counterclaims and third-party claims dismissed.

Housing and Redev. Ins. Exch. v. Lackawanna Cnty., PICS Case No. 15-0796 (C.P. Lackawanna April 20, 2015) Minora, J. (13 pages).

The insurance agent had the authority to cancel the Housing and Redevelopment Insurance Exchange policy on property owned by Lackawanna County. Therefore, the policy was not in effect as of the date of loss.

Kahler v. Alpha Packaging, PICS Case No. 15-0806 (C.P. Northampton April 24, 2015) Beltrami, J. (5 pages).

Where employees were not allowed to roll over vacation time, employee who resigned mid-year was not due compensation for unused vacation time earned in the prior year. Defendant's motion for judgment as a matter of law granted.

Duarte v. Duarte, PICS Case No. 15-0799 (C.P. Northampton April 22, 2015) Beltrami, J. (10 pages).

Summary judgment on liability was inappropriate based on defendant's factual statements regarding plaintiff's injury because reasonable minds could differ as to whether defendant's actions fell below the duty of care.

Sheng v. Lederach Golf Club, PICS Case No. 15-0805 (C.P. Montgomery April 10, 2015) Smyth, J. (3 pages).

Defendant's preliminary objections, which were filed two days late and sought to strike plaintiff's request for an injunction enjoining certain activities on defendant's golf-course property, were denied without prejudice to defendant's raising similar arguments after an opportunity for discovery.

Mackereth v. Kooma, Inc. PICS Case No. 15-0810 (E.D. Pa. May 14, 2015) Pappert, J. (23 pages).

Employees adequately stated minimum wage claims under the Fair Labor Standards Act and Pennsylvania Minimum Wage Act and common law unjust enrichment claims against certain defendant restaurant entities. Motion to dismiss granted and denied in part.

Dorrance v. ARS Nat'l Serv., PICS Case No. 15-0807 (M.D. Pa., May 11, 2015) Mannion, J. (22 pages).

A court can find that an incentive fee for the services of a named plaintiff and class-action representative who did not attend the final fairness hearing was excessive. Incentive fee reduced from $2,500 to $1,750.

Green Party of Pa. v. Aichele, PICS Case No. 15-0809 (E.D. Pa., May 11, 2015) Dalzell, J. (21 pages).

A requirement that nomination signatures in support of minor party candidates must appear on a sheet that indicates the signer's county of residence is a reasonable, nondiscriminatory election-related regulation. Complaint alleging that the requirement unconstitutionally burdens First Amendment rights dismissed.

Moser v. Renninger, PICS Case No. 15-0744 (Pa. Super. May 1, 2015) Allen, J. (15 pages).

Despite husband's death, wife was entitled to collect from his estate arrearages resulting from an interim support order entered prior to his death, running from the date of wife's petition to the date of husband's death. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Millay v. Marino, PICS Case No. 15-0763 (C.P. Lycoming April 10, 2015) Gray, J. (9 pages).

Plaintiff's claim for specific performance of a contract for sale of real property could proceed where the agreement for sale misrepresented that there was public water service at the property.

Monroe-Pike Land, LLC v. Hinton, PICS Case No. 15-0743 (Pa. Super. April 17, 2015) (memorandum) Shogan, J. (18 pages).

A purchaser of real property was not permitted to extend its review period indefinitely where the parties' agreement did not provide for an open-ended extension. Order of the trial court affirmed.

Santander Bank, N.A. v. King Drive Corp., PICS Case No. 15-0747 (Pa. Super. April 28, 2015) (memorandum) Shogan, J. (12 pages).

Trial court did not err in denying appellants' petition to stay, strike, order discovery or open a judgment of confession arising from commercial loans made for the development of a golf course because appellants provided no transcript of the hearing to allow evaluation of their arguments that they were denied a hearing on the merits and contrary to appellants' assertion, there was no pending lawsuit that implicated lis pendens principles. Affirmed, on other grounds.

Commonwealth v. Cox, PICS Case No. 15-0735 (Pa. Super. April 29, 2015) Ford Elliott, J. (17 pages).

The trial court erred in admitting evidence of defendant's prior bad act for the purpose of establishing motive in this case as there was no "logical connection" between defendant's prior act and the crime at issue. Vacated and remanded.

Schaffer v. York Cnty. Sheriff's Dep't, PICS Case No. 15-0748 (Pa. Super. May 5, 2015) (memorandum) Bowes, J. (7 pages).

Trial court erred in ordering the reinstatement of appellee's right to obtain a firearms license because the child endangerment charge he faced for DUI with his four children in the car carried a maximum of five years imprisonment and appellee was thus prohibited by federal law from owning a firearm. Reversed.

Commonwealth v. Perzel, PICS Case No. 15-0736 (Pa. Super. May 4, 2015) Wecht, J. (7 pages).

The sentencing court did not err in ordering defendant to pay restitution to the commonwealth, as it was entitled to compensation under 18 Pa.C.S. §1106 as a direct victim of defendant's abuse of public funds and facilities. Affirmed.

Commonwealth v. Stultz, PICS Case No. 15-0430 (Pa. Super. April 28, 2015) Bowes, J. (36 pages).

The trial court properly denied defendant relief under the PCRA as his argument that the trial court lacked subject matter because the 1968 Pennsylvania Constitution contained no savings clause lacked merit. Affirmed.