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Supreme Court Arguments

September 13, 2017

September 13, 2017

Governmental immunity, vehicle liability exception, definition of “operation”

Balentine v. Chester Water Authority, 140 A. 3d 69 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2016), allocatur granted, 119 MAP 2016

In Balentine, the Supreme Court will consider whether the involuntary movement of a stopped vehicle (where stopped vehicle owned by local government authority was struck by another vehicle and propelled into roadside worker, causing worker’s death) constitutes an act as to which sovereign immunity has been waived under the Political Subdivision Tort Claims Act’s exception to sovereign immunity for “operation of any motor vehicle in the possession or control of the local agency.”

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Effect of Conviction Under Criminal Statute Declared Unconstitutional

Com. v. Derhammer, 134 A. 3d 1066 (Pa. Super. 2016), allocatur granted, 121 MAP 2016

In Derhammer, the Supreme Court will decide whether a sex offender can be convicted of the crime of failing to register with the State Police where the statute under which he was charged and convicted had been declared unconstitutional.

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Attorneys Fees and Costs for Voluntary Discontinuance of Mortgage Foreclosure Action Under Loan Interest and Protection Law 

Bayview Loan v. Lindsay, Pa. Super. 2364 EDA 2015 (July 27, 2016), allocatur granted, 15 EAP 2017

In Bayview Loan, the Supreme Court will decide whether mortgagor is a “prevailing party” under the Loan Interest and Protection Law for purposes of recovering attorneys fees and costs, where mortgagee fails to give pre-foreclosure notices required under the law before initiating a mortgage foreclosure action, and then voluntarily discontinues the action.

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Suppression of evidence discovered upon entry into defendants’ residence based on arrest warrant for third party believed to reside there; standard of review of suppression court’s finding of fact concerning grant of permission to enter residence 

Com. v. Romero, 138 A.3d 21 (Pa. Super. 2016) allocatur granted, 37 and 38 EAP 2017

In Romero, the Supreme Court will determine whether, in view of Payton v. New York, 445 U.S. 573 (1980) and Steagald v. U.S., 451 U.S.204 (1981) evidence including 61 marijuana plants discovered upon entry into defendants’ residence based on arrest warrant for third party believed to reside there, and other evidence obtained through subsequent search warrant issued on the basis of initial search, should have been suppressed; and (2) whether Superior Court was bound by suppression court’s finding of fact that authorities did not have express permission to enter defendants’ residence while attempting to execute arrest warrant for third party believed to reside there.

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Procedural requirements under Article III of the Pennsylvania Constitution for enactment of legislation, including change in original purpose, covering more than one subject, and need for consideration by both chambers on three separate days 

Washington v. Dept. of Public Welfare, 71 A. 3d 1070 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2013) (direct appeal)

In Washington, the Supreme Court will consider the constitutionality of the Act of June 30, 2012, P.L. 668, No. 80 (Act 80), which enacted House Bill 1261, amending the Public Welfare Code.

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September 13, 2017
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