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Preview: Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals Cases

Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals Cases

The last 10 published decisions for the Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals Cases

Last Build Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2017 02:05:14 GMT


RICHARDS v. RICHARDS, 114612, 2017 OK CIV APP 41, ___ P.3d ___

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 Mother, Rachael Richards, appeals the trial court's order, filed December 15, 2015, modifying custody, visitation and child support. In the order, the trial court found Mother did not have a good faith basis to relocate with the children and Father, Wayne Richards, met the Gibbons standard so that custody, visitation and child support should be modified making Father the primary custodial parent. Gibbons v. Gibbons , 1968 OK 77 , 442 P.2d 482 .


Thu, 17 Aug 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 The trial court intervenor, Wayne Doyle (Doyle), appeals the Order And Judgment Approving Receiver's Report On Claims And Authorizing Receiver's Distribution To Creditors, insofar as it denied his claim. The other parties to this appeal, as appellees, are the plaintiff, State of Oklahoma Department of Securities (DOS), ex rel. Irving L. Faught, Administrator, and Ryan Leonard, Court Appointed Receiver (Receiver).

GEE v. BELAIR, 115197, 2017 OK CIV APP 43, ___ P.3d ___

Wed, 16 Aug 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 The plaintiff, Wrangler J. Gee (Gee), appeals an Order dismissing his action against the defendants, Jeffrey A. Belair and April D. Belair (collectively, Belairs).


Thu, 17 Aug 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 Petitioner/Appellant John Neel Zink (Zink) appeals from a Journal Entry of Judgment dismissing his claims against Respondents/Appellees Etta May Avery (Etta May), Nancy Ann McGill (McGill), and Mickey G. Shackelford (Shackelford) (collectively, Respondents). The court found that Zink, as a former co-trustee, did not have standing to bring his claims under 60 O.S. 2011 §175.23 (C) and, therefore, the court did not have jurisdiction over this action. We find Zink qualifies as a "person affected by the administration of the trust estate" under §175.23(C). The court erred by dismissing the case. Accordingly, we reverse and remand.

SHARP v. WHITWORTH, 115064, 2017 OK CIV APP 40, ___ P.3d ___

Fri, 04 Aug 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 Defendant/Appellant Kelly Lynn Whitworth (Defendant) appeals the trial court's order granting, in part, Plaintiff/Appellee Nickolas Lee Sharp's (Plaintiff) motion for new trial. Below, the jury found in favor of Plaintiff on liability, but did not award any damages. The trial court ordered a new trial on damages only, but directed the parties to meet and confer regarding their willingness to reach an agreement regarding liability and punitive or exemplary damages, specifically ordering the parties to discuss the possibility of Defendant admitting liability and Plaintiff withdrawing the claim for punitive damages upon retrying the case. Because we find that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in granting a new trial, we affirm.

SHEFFER v. CAROLINA FORGE COMPANY, LLC, 114771, 2017 OK CIV APP 39, ___ P.3d ___

Thu, 20 Jul 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 This appeal involves two law firms disputing the trial court's division of a $234,462.34 contingent attorney fee fund. The court awarded $5,000.00 to attorney Rick Yohn, then awarded Appellant Garrett Law Center, PLLC (GLC) 25% of the fund and 75% to Appellee The Hershewe Law Firm, P.C. (HLF). We find the division was not against the clear weight of the evidence or contrary to law. Accordingly, we affirm.


Thu, 09 Mar 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 Defendant, Danette Mackey, appeals the order and judgment of the District Court of Okmulgee County, entered on June 30, 2015, granting Plaintiff, Okmulgee County Family Resources Center, Inc. (OCFRC), default judgment and damages, together with attorney fees and costs, as a discovery sanction. On review, 1 we hold that the district court abused its discretion by (1) granting a default judgment of liability as a sanction for the claimed discovery violation in the absence of a viable order compelling Mackey to answer prior to the imposition of sanctions; and (2) awarding actual damages, together with attorney fees and costs, as a sanction without affording Mackey notice and an opportunity to contest OCFRC's claims at hearing. We reverse the lower court's orders and judgments, and remand for further proceedings.

BARNES v. BARNES, 114972, 2017 OK CIV APP 38, ___ P.3d ___

Fri, 30 Jun 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 In this post-dissolution of marriage proceeding, Petitioner/Appellant, Misty Dawn Barnes, now Wynn (Mother), appeals from an order of modification which granted Respondent/Appellee, Benjamin Scott Barnes (Father), the right to claim one minor child as a dependent for tax exemption purposes. Finding no abuse of discretion, we affirm the trial court's order.

THIBAULT v. GARCIA, 113954, 2017 OK CIV APP 36, 398 P.3d 331

Wed, 14 Jun 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 Defendant/Appellant Eva M. Garcia appeals the district court's order granting her motion and dismissing Plaintiff/Appellee James Thibault's petition without prejudice. Thibault does not challenge that ruling. At issue in this appeal is the effective date of the district court's order. The district court made the effective date of its order the date of the hearing on Garcia's motion. However, because Thibault did not serve summons on Garcia within one hundred and eighty (180) days as required by 12 O.S. Supp. 2013 § 2004 (I), and failed to show good cause for not doing so, his petition was "deemed dismissed" one hundred and eighty-one (181) days after it was filed. Id . The district court's order dismissing Thibault's petition is affirmed, as modified, to reflect that the effective date of the dismissal is one hundred and eighty-one (181) days after Thibault's petition was filed.

HESS v. VOLKSWAGEN GROUP OF AMERICA, INC., 114131, 2017 OK CIV APP 35, 398 P.3d 27

Mon, 13 Mar 2017 21:00:00 CST

¶1 The trial court previously granted attorney fees against Defendant/Appellant/Counter-Appellee Volkswagen Group of America, Inc., (Volkswagen) in an amount exceeding $7 million in this multi-jurisdictional, class action law suit. In an appeal from that award, the Oklahoma Supreme Court concluded the trial court abused its discretion by failing to deduct the entirety of fees claimed in certain "failed Florida litigation" when calculating the lodestar fee; the Court also concluded the trial court abused its discretion by multiplying the lodestar fee of approximately $3.6 million by 1.9. See Hess v. Volkswagen of Am., Inc. , 2014 OK 111 , ¶ 38 & 39, 341 P.3d 662 . Thus, the Court reversed the trial court's order and remanded the case with instructions that "[t]he attorney fees, as herein modified, are to be assessed against Volkswagen . . . in a manner consistent with this opinion and as ordered by the trial court." Id. ¶ 40. The Court emphasized that the total recovery in this case against Volkswagen of only $45,780 is "minuscule" when "the pay-out is spread across the entirety of the defined class[.]" Id. ¶ 35. However, the Court stated in its conclusion that "[t]here is a strong presumption that the lodestar method, alone, will reflect a reasonable attorney fee." Id. ¶ 39 (footnote omitted). The Court declined to address Volkswagen's "due process challenge, as attorney fees must be recalculated on remand." Id. ¶ 1 n.1.