Petitions for Writ of Certiorari --December 2012


September Term, 2012


Granted December 13, 2012

Gregory Hall, et al. v. Prince George's County Democratic Central Committee, et al. - Case No. 100, September Term, 2012

Issues – State Government - 1) As a matter of first impression, under Art. III, § 13(a)(1) of the MD Constitution where a central committee submits a name to the Governor within 30 days of a vacancy of office in the House of Delegates, does the Governor have a mandatory duty to appoint the person whose name is submitted to him within 15 days? 2) As a matter of first impression, what is the final day for the Governor to perform his duty to appoint under Art III, § 13(a)(1) of the MD Constitution where the 15th day following submission of the name falls on a legal holiday? 3) As a matter of first impression, does the central committee have any authority to rescind the name it submitted to the Governor under MD Constitution Art. III, § 13(a)(1) more than 30 days after the event that created the vacancy in the House of Delegates. 4) Should a writ of mandamus issue to the Governor to appoint the central committee's nominee if he fails to do so after 15 days? 5) Did the trial court err in considering on summary judgment an affidavit that was based upon "information and belief"? 6) Does Art. XV, § 2 of the MD Constitution permit the expulsion of a duly-elected legislator who received a final disposition of probation before judgment? 7) Where charges against an elected official resulted in a final disposition of probation before judgment in another county, did the lower court have the power to revoke this disposition and disqualify that official from completing her term in office?

Granted December 14, 2012

BJ's Wholesale Club, Inc. v. Russell Rosen, Individually, etc., et al. - Case No. 99, September Term, 2012

Issues - Torts - 1) In limiting its analysis and holding to "commercial enterprises," did CSA incorrectly create a distinction not previously recognized in determining the validity of exculpatory agreements in MD? 2) Did CSA err in both disregarding and misinterpreting MD public policy in adopting what it described as the "majority view"? 3) Did CSA err in applying the same flawed public policy rationale in holding the indemnification clause invalid?

Hector Butler, Jr. v. S&S Partnership, et al. - Case No. 1, September Term, 2013

Issues - Torts - 1) In a lead paint case, where the plain language of the scheduling order provided that "Defendants who still own a subject property" shall be permitted to attend the lead test of that property, did CSA err in ruling that the Plaintiff was required to have notified the Defendants and to have permitted attendance at a lead test conducted at a property which was not still owned by a defendant? 2) Did the motions court err in imposing discovery sanctions on Plaintiff when no discovery motion was ever made by the Defendant, no objection was ever made regarding the discovery violations, and the court itself raised the discovery issues for the first time sua sponte in open court at a hearing on an unrelated motion with no advance notice to the Plaintiff that a sanctions motion was being considered by the court? 3) In a lead paint case located in Baltimore City, where the cause of action is based on MD's Consumer Protection Act, must a Plaintiff prove the existence of chipping, peeling and/or flaking paint at the inception of a lease, or is proof of any violation of the Baltimore City Housing Code which is present at least inception and ultimately proximately causes an injury sufficient for a prima facie case for violation of the misrepresentation provisions of the CPA? 4) Did the trial court correctly grant summary judgment for Defendant because it was "unimpressed" with Plaintiff's evidence or did it thereby make an impermissible credibility determination?

Josephine Chesson, et al. v. Montgomery Mutual Insurance Co. - Case No. 97, September Term, 2012

Issue - Civil Procedure - Did CSA err in holding that the Frye-Reed standard for the admissibility of scientific expert opinion requires a consensus in the relevant scientific community supporting that opinion?

Jeremy K. Fishman, et al. v. Sheila Murphy, Personal Representative of the Estate of Dorothy Mae Urban - Case No. 93, September Term, 2012

Issues - Real Property - 1) Whether the doctrine of equitable subrogation is to be broadly and liberally applied or applies only to refinance lenders who, after a foreclosure sale, obtain a position of priority over intervening judgment holders? 2) Whether undisputed facts supporting the application of the doctrine of equitable subrogation establish "good cause" under MD Rule 14-211(e) sufficient to prevent the lower court from dismissing a foreclosure action under a pending motion to stay or dismiss where the moving party concedes that the doctrine should apply? 3) Whether a trial court is required to deny a motion to stay or dismiss under MD Rule 14-211, where the trial court has found that the motion to stay or dismiss was not filed under oath nor supported by affidavit as required by subsection (a)(3)(A) of the rule and no good cause for the failure to file under oath or affirmation has been provided or alleged? 4) Whether the constructive notice provided by Rule 12-102 pursuant to the doctrine of lis pendens defeats all claims against title to real property subject to that constructive notice regardless of the outcome of the pending litigation?

Jamar Holt v. State of Maryland - Case No. 98, September Term, 2012

Issues - Criminal Law - 1) Did CSA err in finding reasonable articulable suspicion to seize Petitioner based on the actions of another individual and Petitioner's association with that individual? 2) Did CSA err in holding that any new crime committed by a defendant after an illegal stop by the police purges the Fourth Amendment taint of the police's illegal conduct

In re: Ashley S. and Caitlyn S. - Case No. 4, September Term, 2013

Issues - Family Law - 1) Where the Appellate Court held the removal of children from their mother's care to have been an abuse of judicial discretion, may the juvenile court in a subsequent hearing consider those months that the children spent in foster care as being an "out-of-home placement" for the purposes of determining the permanency plan for the children, pursuant to Md. Code Ann., CJP § 3-823? 2) Did the juvenile court err in ordering a plan of adoption for the children, where they were aged 13 years and 4 ½ years and had a bond with their mother?

In re: Ryan W. - Case No. 95, September Term, 2012

Issues - Juvenile Law - CINA - 1) Did CSA err in holding that a local department of social services has plenary authority to apply for and use a foster child's OASDI benefits without seeking an express grant of authority from the juvenile court to exercise control over the benefits and without providing the foster child with notice and the opportunity to be heard? 2) Did CSA err in rejecting the juvenile court's exercise of its authority in determining that a total of $31,693.50 was to be conserved in Ryan's best interests? 3) Did CSA err in upholding state practice and regulations that require automatic, non-discretionary application of all of a foster child's OASDI benefits and that are inconsistent with federal regulations requiring the proper exercise of discretion as a representative payee?

In the Matter of: The Estate of Mary Ann Hauser - Case No. 92, September Term, 2012

Issues - Estates & Trusts - 1) Did the lower court err in ordering that The Mary Ann Hauser Trust be admitted to probate as her Last Will and Testament, and that distribution of the above-captioned Estate be made in accordance with the provisions of the Trust as if it were a Will? 2) Did the lower court err in admitting the testimony of interested persons as extrinsic evidence of the decedent's testamentary intent where that testimony contradicted the language of the Trust? 3) Does the Orphans' Court have standing to maintain this petition?

Flora Lipitz, et al. v. William A. Hurwitz - Case No. 2, September Term, 2013

Issues - Real Property - 1) Did CSA evade the normal process of determining the existence of an ambiguity in statutory language by not asking whether the statute is "plainly susceptible of more than one meaning" or whether there is "a doubt" as to the General Assembly's intent? 2) Where a statute grants to a "member of the public" a right to cancel a contract to purchase real property in a homeowner's association development if certain information is not furnished to the purchaser, does a purchaser qualify as a "member of the public" if he already owns other property in the development, has lived there for nine years, already possesses the requisite information, and rejects the seller's post-contract efforts to give him any information he needs? 3) Did CSA err in its analysis of whether the construction of the statute leads to a result which is "absurd, illogical, or inconsistent with common sense"? 3) Where a statute grants a purchaser of real property a right of cancellation if certain disclosures are not made, does the doctrine of equitable estoppel bar the purchaser from exercising that right where the purchaser already has knowledge of all matters for which disclosure is required and he declined the seller's request to provide him with the required information?

Lincoln Miller v. State of Maryland - Case No. 94, September Term, 2012

Issues - Criminal Law - 1) Did CSA overstep its bounds in holding that there was no existing precedent as of the date Petitioner's conviction became final that would have compelled a ruling that the failure to advise a criminal defendant about deportation consequences constituted ineffective assistance of counsel despite precedent in the form of Denisyuk v. State, which held that the Supreme Court ruling in Padilla v. Kentucky applies retroactively to post-conviction challenges of guilty pleas entered after April 1, 1997? 2) Did CSA err in holding that Denisyuk did not apply to Petitioner's case because his claim for coram nobis relief was based exclusively on his assertion that his guilty plea was involuntary and not that his trial counsel was ineffective? 3) Was Petitioner's guilty plea entered into voluntarily where he was not advised of the certain immigration consequences, that is, placement in deportation proceedings, that would follow as a result of the plea? 4) Did CSA correctly affirm the trial court's denial of coram nobis relief upon this Court's remand for reconsideration where CSA held that the ineffective assistance of counsel issues addressed in Denisyuk did not apply to Petitioner's voluntariness issue; the law at the time of Petitioner's guilty plea did not support a finding of ineffective assistance in any event; and Petitioner's guilty plea was voluntarily entered with knowledge of the direct consequences of the plea? 5) Did CSA improperly consider Petitioner's claim regarding the denial of his petition for a writ of coram nobis on remand where Petitioner had waived the claim on which he sought relief and where Petitioner's claim was without merit in any event?

Susan Mummert, et al. v. Massoud B. Alizadeh, et al. - Case No. 5, September Term, 2013

Issue - Torts - Under MD law, is a wrongful death beneficiary's right to file a lawsuit contingent upon the decedent's ability to bring a timely negligence claim on the date of her death?

Carolyn Delorise Patton v. Wells Fargo Financial Maryland, Inc. - Case No. 3, September Term, 2013

Issues - Commercial Law - 1) Did the trial court err by applying the wrong statute of limitations when it held that Plaintiff's claims brought pursuant to Title 12, Subtitle 10 of the Commercial Law Code were time-barred pursuant to Title 12, Subtitle 7 of the Commercial Law Code? 2) Did the trial court err in dismissing Plaintiff's breach of contract claim on the basis that Wells Fargo could not be sued for its failure to follow the law selected as the governing law in the Retail Installment Sale Contract?

Adeline Sturdivant, et al. v. Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene - Case No. 96, September Term, 2012

Issues - Labor and Employment - 1) After a layoff, do laid-off State employees have a statutory right, under Title 11, to reinstatement by seniority if the unit seeks to fill vacancies in the same class? 2) As Spring Grove Hospital did not comply with each of the steps for recruitment, set out in Title 7, when it filled vacant DCA positions, must it reinstate the aggrieved employees?


Denied December 17, 2012

Alton, William E., III v. State - Pet. Docket No. 309
Anderson, Tyrell Davron v. State - Pet. Docket No. 463
Arthur E. Selnick & Associates, Inc. v. Howard County - Pet. Docket No. 459
Bailey v. Oliver - Pet. Docket No. 359
Bailey, Tameika M. v. State - Pet. Docket No. 374
Baker v. Deigert - Pet. Docket No. 452
Bernikowicz v. Porter - Pet. Docket No. 447
Bratt, Larry v. State - Pet. Docket No. 469
Cheek, Ronnie v. State - Pet. Docket No. 450
Conwell v. Bathras - Pet. Docket No. 433
Cooley, Damon v. State - Pet. Docket No. 333
Cooper, Gary Jonathan v. State - Pet. Docket No. 358
Cunningham, John v. State - Pet. Docket No. 351
Davis, Travon David v. State - Pet. Docket No. 472
Davon, Tianee v. State - Pet. Docket No. 455 and conditional cross-petition
Fowler v. Herring - Pet. Docket No. 416
Fuster v. Shady Grove Adventist Hospital - Pet. Docket No. 428
Jackson, TJ Sharocko v. State - Pet. Docket No. 471
Jones v. Williams - Pet. Docket No. 453
Keiser, James E., Jr. v. State - Pet. Docket No. 438
Law Office of Jason Ostendorf v. Counsel Press - Pet. Docket No. 454 and conditional cross-petition
Martin, Donald v. State - Pet. Docket No. 449
Molin, Steven Frederick v. State - Pet. Docket No. 432
Myers v. Baltimore County Department of Social Services - Pet. Docket No. 458
Oram, Anthony Darnell v. State - Pet. Docket No. 462
Ozkok v. Gregory - Pet. Docket No. 422
Perry, Kenneth v. State - Pet. Docket No. 439
Pittman, Timothy Lee v. State - Pet. Docket No. 404
PNC Bank, National Association v. Schwat - Pet. Docket No. 441
Queen's Landing Council of Unit Owners v. Cohen - Pet. Docket No. 444
Rouse, William Curtis v. State - Pet. Docket No. 394
Rustin, Brandon Eugene v. State - Pet. Docket No. 434
Scaggs, Donald Edward, II v. State - Pet. Docket No. 430
Schulte v. Judge Jakubowski - Pet. Docket No. 334
Scott, Jason v. State - Pet. Docket No. 516
Sherrod, Kenneth v. State - Pet. Docket No. 440
Singletary, Tavon v. State - Pet. Docket No. 414
Stancill v. Montgomery Co. - Pet. Docket No. 442
Sudduth v. Cameron - Pet. Docket No. 81
Tanner, James Sterling v. State - Pet. Docket No. 425
Turpin, Tyrell v. State - Pet. Docket No. 470
Tyson v. Tyson - Pet. Docket No. 431
Waters, Clifton Alexander v. State - Pet. Docket No. 353
Williams, Jerome, Charles McGaney & Gary Collins - Pet. Docket No. 437
Williams, Raymond Lamont v. State - Pet. Docket No. 464
Woodson v. Sunrise Atlantic - Pet. Docket No. 335