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Law Offices of Michael E. Douglas
P.O. Box 251551
Woodbury, Minnesota 55125-6551
   

 Saint Paul Lawyer
 
 mdouglas@injurylawtwincities.com

 

UNPUBLISHED CIVIL OPINIONS FROM THE MINNESOTA COURT OF APPEALS

A07-1756

Steven Rousseau,
Appellant,

vs.

Cal R. Ludeman,
Commissioner of Human Services,
Respondent.

HUDSON, Judge
Appellant challenges the judicial appeal panel's decision
denying his request for a provisional discharge from his indeterminate
commitment as mentally ill and dangerous. Because the panel
sufficiently weighed witness credibility, the panel's findings are
sustained by the record as a whole, and the panel did not err in
concluding that appellant did not meet the statutory criteria for a
provisional discharge, we affirm.
= = = =
A07-1675

In the Matter of the Welfare of the Child of: S.L., Parent.

STONEBURNER, Judge
On appeal from termination of her parental rights (TPR),
appellant mother argues that the district court abused its discretion in
evidentiary rulings and that there is insufficient evidence to support
any of the three statutory grounds on which the district court based
TPR. Because any abuse of the district court's broad discretion in
evidentiary rulings was harmless in this case, there is clear and
convincing evidence that appellant failed to abide by the duties of the
parent and child relationship, and reasonable efforts failed to correct
conditions leading to the out-of-home placement, we affirm.
= = = =
A07-1589

In the Matter of the Welfare of the Children of:
S.L.B. and W.A.H., Parents.

JOHNSON, Judge
S.L.B. is a single mother with three children, twins born in December
2004 and an infant born in June 2007. In April 2007, the Otter Tail
County Department of Human Services filed a petition to terminate her
parental rights to the twins. After a three-day trial, the district
court granted the county's petition. S.L.B.'s appeal presents the
question whether the county's evidence was sufficient to prove, by clear
and convincing evidence, any of three statutory bases for termination,
namely, that S.L.B. failed to satisfy the duties of the parent-child
relationship, failed to correct the conditions leading to an out-of-home
placement, or is a palpably unfit parent. See Minn. Stat. ? 260C.301,
subd. 1(b)(2), (4), (5) (2006). We conclude that the evidence does not
support the district court's findings of fact and conclusions of law
and, therefore, reverse.
= = = =
A07-1567

In re the Marriage of:

Kristine M. Kast, petitioner,
Respondent,

vs.

Richard W. Kast,
Appellant.

KALITOWSKI, Judge
Appellant Richard W. Kast challenges the district court's judgment
dissolving his marriage, arguing that the district court abused its
discretion in (1) awarding respondent-mother sole physical custody of
the parties' two minor children; (2) determining his total child-support
arrears; and (3) dividing the parties' marital debt and marital assets.
We affirm.
= = = =
A07-1535

In the Matter of the Welfare of the Children of:
K.A.T.-K., R.W.K., and M.R.H., Parents

HALBROOKS, Judge
Appellant challenges the district court's order granting
permanent legal and physical custody of M.T.H. to respondent M.R.H., his
father. Because there is substantial evidence to support the district
court's findings that (1) the transfer of custody to respondent is in
M.T.H.'s best interests, (2) social services made reasonable efforts to
reunify appellant with M.T.H., and (3) the conditions that led to
M.T.H.'s out-of-home placement were not corrected and the district court
did not err in ordering the transfer, we affirm.
= = = =
A07-1511

In the Matter of the Welfare
of the Children of:
S. P. L. a/k/a P. M., S. C., G. A., and R. D.,
Parents.

WORKE, Judge
On appeal from the termination of her parental rights, appellant argues
that the district court erred in (1) determining that clear and
convincing evidence supports the findings that appellant is palpably
unfit and that the county's reasonable efforts to correct the conditions
leading to the out-of-home placement failed; and (2) ordering that
appellant was to have no contact with her children in out-of-home
placement following the termination. We affirm the termination of
parental rights and reverse the no-contact order.
= = = =
A07-1159

Cindy Sue Lubich n/k/a Cindy Sue Miller, petitioner,
Respondent,

vs.

Alan Scott Lubich,
Appellant.

TOUSSAINT, Chief Judge
Appellant Alan Scott Lubich challenges the denial of his motion to
modify the child support of the parties' sons, now 19 and 18, arguing
that the district court should have applied the Hortis/Valento formula
because, although respondent Cindy Sue Lubich, n/k/a Cindy Sue Miller,
had physical custody of their sons, one son resided with appellant
full-time and the other resided with him half-time. Appellant also
argues that the district court should have offset the expenses he
incurred while the sons were living with him against his child-support
arrearages. Because we see no error in the denial of the motion to
modify child support, we affirm.
= = = =
A07-1087

In the Matter of the Welfare of the Child of:
R.C. and R.G.,
Parents.

LANSING, Judge
The district court terminated the parental rights of RC and RG to their
two-year-old daughter, SG. On appeal, we conclude that clear and
convincing evidence supports the district court's findings on the
statutory grounds for termination, that termination is in SG's best
interests, and that the district court did not rely on inadmissible
evidence in reaching its determination. Accordingly, we affirm.
= = = =
A07-0885

Brandon Matthew Peck,
Respondent,

County of Itasca,
Respondent,

vs.

Jennifer Hron,
Appellant.

SHUMAKER, Judge
In this appeal from the district court's denial without an
evidentiary hearing of appellant's motion for custody modification,
appellant argues that her affidavits offered in support of her motion
firmly establish a prima facie case for modification. Because the
district court did not abuse its discretion in determining that
appellant failed to set forth a prima facie case to warrant an
evidentiary hearing, we affirm.
= = = =
A07-0865

In re the Matter of:

John Thomas Kurhajetz,
Appellant,

vs.

Madeline Mae Fenice,
Respondent.

SHUMAKER, Judge
On appeal in this custody dispute, appellant-father contends
that the district court abused its discretion by awarding sole physical
custody to respondent-mother and that the parenting time awarded to him
is deficient, because the district court failed to consider the best
interests of the child; the awarded parenting time is less than that
which was awarded in temporary orders and is inconsistent with
recommendations of the guardian ad litem (GAL) and mother; the district
court failed to provide specific instructions as to when and where the
holiday exchanges would take place; and the awarded parenting time is to
be further reduced without an evidentiary basis once the child begins
elementary school. We affirm in part and reverse in part.
= = = =
A07-0775

Crown Equipment Rental Co., Inc., judgment creditor,
Respondent,

vs.

J. B. Builders, LLC,
Judgment Debtor,

and

Primesite Investments, LLC, garnishee,
Appellant.

SCHELLHAS, Judge
This is an appeal in a garnishment proceeding involving real
property against which the debtor had a mechanic's lien. The district
court granted the judgment-creditor garnishor's motion for summary
judgment and awarded the garnishor a personal judgment against the
garnishee-landowner for the amount of the mechanic's lien. The
garnishee-landowner appeals. Because the relevant authority does not
allow a personal judgment against the garnishee-landowner under the
facts in this case, we reverse the judgment against the
garnishee-landowner.
= = = =
A07-0530

Atlantic Credit & Finance,
Respondent,

vs.

James R. Dustrude,
Appellant.

CRIPPEN, Judge
Appellant James Dustrude contends that the district court abused
its discretion in refusing to vacate a default judgment that was entered
when he failed to appear at the summary judgment proceeding. Because
appellant failed to show he has a meritorious defense or other factors
constituting cause for vacation, we affirm.
= = = =
A07-0453

Gary I. Carpenter,
Relator,

vs.

Cambridge Technologies Inc.,
Respondent,

and

Department of Employment and Economic Development,
Respondent.

CONNOLLY, Judge
This case arose after relator quit his job at respondent.
Relator subsequently filed for unemployment benefits but a decision of
the unemployment law judge (ULJ) disqualified him from receiving them.
The ULJ determined that relator quit his job for other than a good
reason caused by his employer pursuant to Minn. Stat. ? 268.095, subd. 1
(Supp. 2005). Relator appeals that decision, arguing that (1)
respondent misrepresented the nature of the job, constituting a breach
of the employment agreement; (2) the ULJ did not define an average
reasonable worker; (3) relator repeatedly tried to discuss the adverse
working conditions and give respondent a chance to correct them; and (4)
the findings of fact by the ULJ were erroneous. We affirm.
= = = =
A07-0441

Outdoor Specialties and Landscaping, LLC,
Appellant,

vs.

Minnesota Assigned Risk Plan, as administered by
Berkley Risk Administrators Company, LLC,
Respondent.

LANSING, Judge
After an employee was injured on the job, Outdoor Specialties and
Landscaping, LLC brought an action seeking a declaration that it was
covered by the Minnesota Workers' Compensation Assigned Risk Plan. The
district court concluded that Outdoor Specialties' insurance had been
properly cancelled and granted summary judgment. Because Outdoor
Specialties received legally sufficient notice of the cancellation and
the cancellation was based on a permissible reason, we affirm.
= = = =
A07-0253

Joyce A. Barry,
Relator,

vs.

Department of Employment and Economic Development,
Respondent.

CRIPPEN, Judge
Relator Joyce Barry disputes the adequacy of evidence to support
the determination that she was ineligible for previously paid benefits
and thus must make repayment and pay a penalty for fraud. We affirm on
this issue and on relator's dispute on the fairness of the hearing
process.
= = = =
A07-252

Damian Salib,
Respondent,

vs.

Allstate Insurance Company,
Appellant.

WILLIS, Judge
Appellant Allstate Insurance Company challenges the district court's
judgment in favor of respondent Damien Salib, arguing that the district
court erred by concluding that, under the collateral-source statute,
Allstate was not entitled to a reduction of the damages award for the
amount of workers'-compensation benefits that Salib received. We
affirm.
= = = =
A06-2345

County of Nicollet on behalf of Lori Stevenson,
Respondent,

vs.

David A. Machau,
Appellant.

STONEBURNER, Judge
Appellant challenges an order establishing payments for
child-support arrears and requiring appellant to seek employment,
arguing that the child-support magistrate erroneously found him to be
voluntarily unemployed. We affirm.
= = = =
A07-111

In the Matter of the Findings of Abuse by
Dave Lloyd Kulee.

WORKE, Judge
Relator challenges respondent's determination that (1) the
Minnesota Department of Health proved by a preponderance of the evidence
that relator abused a vulnerable adult, and (2) relator was properly
disqualified from positions involving direct contact with persons
receiving services from certain programs. Because we conclude that
respondent's determinations were not supported by substantial evidence,
and relator was not properly disqualified, we reverse.
 

 
 
 

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