Oregon Supreme Court

2019

January 2 summaries

Jackson v. Franke

To prevail, Petitioner must show that there is ‘more than mere possibility’ that if the objection had been properly made his appellate counsel would have taken up the issue and ultimately presented it to this court in a petition for review, and that this court would have allowed review and reversed petitioner's conviction. Green v. Franke, 357 Or 301, 322 (2015).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Post-Conviction Relief

State v. Vallin

Although the preamble to the legislature’s 2009 bill, HB 3508, and on representations made by legislators and their staff during committee hearings on the bill might support a legislative intent to “phase in” sentences that were as long as the ones that the voters had approved in Measure 57, they do not support an intent to restore the sentences to their former status as sentences that were approved by the people and thus subject to the two-thirds majority requirement of Measure 57 as they are sentences that the legislature adopted.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

February 7 summaries

Shriner's Hospital for Children v. Cox

Pursuant to ORCP 21 G(1), “defenses of lack of personal jurisdiction and insufficient or improper service will be ‘waived’ if a defendant does not assert them in a timely fashion. See ORCP 21 G(1) (providing that a defendant will waive those defenses if they are not raised either in an ORCP 21 motion or in the first responsive pleading).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Civil Law

State v. Banks

"Article I, section 9, of the Oregon Constitution prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures of 'persons'" and "a search of one's breath is protected under that provision." State v. Newton, 291 Or 788, 800, 636 P2d 393 (1981), overruled on other grounds by State v. Spencer, 305 Or 59, 750 P2d 147 (1988).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Procedure

State v. Taylor

“The ‘guarantee of trial by an “impartial jury” means trial by a jury that is not biased in favor of or against either party, but is influenced in making its decision only by evidence produced at trial and legal standards provided by the trial court.’” State v. Amini, 331 Or 384, 391, 15 P3d 541 (2000).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Constitutional Law

State v. McColly

“To establish that Defendant had been ‘released from custody’ for purposes of second-degree failure to appear, the state [is] required to prove (1) the imposition of actual or constructive restraint by a peace officer, pursuant to an arrest or court order, amounting to ‘custody,’ ORS 162.135(4); and, then, (2) that Defendant had been released from that custody, by court order, under a release agreement and upon an appearance condition.” State v. McColly, 364 Or 464, 488 (2019).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

Gutale v. State of Oregon

The Court has made clear "that a ground for relief reasonably could have been raised under one of two circumstances: (1) when the ground for relief was known or (2) when the ground for relief was reasonably available, despite not being known." Verduzco v. State of Oregon, 357 Or 553, 566, 355 P3d 902 (2015).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Post-Conviction Relief

Perez-Rodriguez v. State of Oregon

The “escape clause” of the statute of limitations in the Post-Conviction Relief Act must be “construed narrowly” and only applies in “extraordinary circumstances.” Bartz v. State of Oregon, 314 Or 353, 839 P2d 217 (1992).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Post-Conviction Relief

State v. Edmonds

Law enforcement records are generally not admissible under the "business records exception" in criminal cases because it supports the conclusion that, under the Oregon Evidence Code, “section [803](6) does not open a back door for evidence excluded by section [803](8)”. United States v. Oates, 560 F2d 45 (2d Cir 1977). United States v. Cain, 615 F2d 380 (5th Cir 1980).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

March 2 summaries

Schutz v. La Costita III, Inc.

Under ORS 471.565(1), social hosts’ immunity is limited to incidents arising from their actions as servers or social hosts.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Remedies

Foote v. State of Oregon

Under ORS 28.020, declaratory relief may be sought by "[a]ny person whose rights, status, or other legal relations are affected by a constitution, statute, municipal charter, ordinance, contract, or franchise may have determined any question of construction or validity arising under any such instrument."

Area(s) of Law:
  • Standing

April 5 summaries

Chavez v. State of Oregon

Pursuant to ORS 138.510(3), "[a] petition pursuant to ORS 138.510 to 138.680 must be filed within two years of the [date that the challenged conviction became final], unless the court on hearing a subsequent petition finds grounds for relief asserted which could not reasonably have been raised in the original or amended petition."

Area(s) of Law:
  • Post-Conviction Relief

Sloan v. Providence Health System-Oregon

"Even when a special relationship is the basis for the duty of care owed by one person to another . . . if the special relationship does not prescribe a particular scope of duty, then ‘common law principles of reasonable care and foreseeability of harm are relevant.’” Oregon Steel Mills, Inc. v. Coopers & Lybrand, LLP, 336 Or 329, 342, 83 P3d 322 (2004).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Tort Law

State v. Black

“The rule against vouching prohibits a witness from making a direct comment, or one that is tantamount to a direct comment, on another witness’s credibility.” State v. Beauvais, 357 Or 524, 545, 354 P3d 680 (2015).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Evidence

Vasquez v. Double Press Mfg., Inc.

“Claims subject to *** ORS chapter 656” under ORS 31.710(1) “most plausibly encompasses an exception” for claims against noncomplying employers and third parties, and the context of ORS 31.710(1), as part of “tort reform” enacted in 1987, does not indicate the damages cap “was intended to apply to … claims in ORS chapter 656.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Workers Compensation

Gadalean v. SAIF

Under ORS 656.005(30), a "'worker' means any person, including a minor whether lawfully or unlawfully employed, who engages to furnish services for a remuneration, subject to the direct control of an employer."

Area(s) of Law:
  • Workers Compensation

May 3 summaries

State v. Lien/Wilverding

If a state officer requests a private person to search a particular place or thing, and if that private person acts because of and within the scope of the officer’s request, then [Or Const] Article I, section 9, will govern the search. State v. Tucker, 330 Or 85, 90, 997 P2d 182 (2000)

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Procedure

White v. Premo

Miller v. Alabama prohibits a court from "imposing a life sentence without parole on a juvenile who commits homicide, unless the homicide reflects the juvenile's irreparable corruption rather than the transient immaturity of youth." Miller v. Alabama, 567 US 460, 479-80, 132 S Ct 2455, 183 L Ed 2d 407 (2012).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Post-Conviction Relief

White v. Premo

In order to impose a life sentence without parole on a juvenile who commits a homicide, the homicide must reflect the juvenile's "irreparable corruption rather than the transient immaturity of youth." Miller v. Alabama, 567 US 460, 479-80, 132 S Ct 2455, 183 L Ed 2d 407 (2012).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Post-Conviction Relief

June 8 summaries

Garcia-Solis v. Farmers Ins. Co.

“For every compensable injury, the insurer *** shall cause to be provided medical services for conditions caused in material part by the injury ***” ORS 656.245(1).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Workers Compensation

State v. Riley

Under ORS 136.440(1), “‘the corroborative evidence must be independent of the testimony of the accomplice.’” State v. Brake, 99 Or 310, 313, 195 P 583 (1921). “Other evidence is required by the statute, ‘so that it can in truth be said that his conviction is not based entirely upon the evidence of the accomplice.’” Id.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

Eugene Water and Electric Board v. PERB

Under former ORS 237.011 (1981), a person is only eligible for the PERS benefits if they are "in the service of a public employer for a six month period," and under former ORS 237.071(2), "the employer must deduct the contributions of employees from the payroll and transmit that information to the board to create an account for the employee in the fund." 

Area(s) of Law:
  • Administrative Law

State v. Gutierrez-Medina

Comparative fault is not available as a defense for conduct involving "culpability beyond gross negligence." Johnson v. Tilden, 278 Or 11, 17, 562 P2d 1188 (1977); Cook v. Kinzua Pine Mills Co. et al, 207 Or 34, 42, 293 P2d 717 (1956).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

State v. Sperou

Under ORS 136.415, “[W]here a defendant denies that any crime occurred, references to the complaining witness as a ‘victim’ may undermine the presumption of defendant’s innocence because it assumed defendant’s guilt, a fact that is necessarily not proved until the jury finds the defendant guilty.” See also Jackson v. Virginia, 442 US 307, 315, 99 S Ct 2781 (1979).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Evidence

Dep’t of Human Servs. v. T.M.D.

"In a termination proceeding, if a parent’s conduct justifies termination, then the best interests of the child are considered explicitly, and could even then prevent termination from occurring.” State ex rel Juv. Dept. v. Beasley, 314 Or 444, 451-52, 840 P2d 78 (1992).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Juvenile Law

State v. Moreno-Hernandez

“It is generally held that medical expenses incurred due to the negligent injury of a minor unemancipated child are damages suffered by the parent and not the child.” Palmore v. Kirkman Laboratories, 270 Or 294, 527 P2d 391 (1974); ORS 31.700.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Sentencing

State v. Toth

There are three requirements for a compensatory fine: “[t]he first is that the crime must ‘result[] in injury.’” State v. Moreno Hernandez, 365 Or 175, __ (2019) (quoting ORS 137.101(1)). Second, "the statutory definition of 'victim' in ORS 137.103(4) must be met, which usually requires a showing that the victim suffered 'economic damages,' defined by ORS 31.710 as 'reasonable charges necessarily incurred for medical, hospital, nursing and rehabilitative services and other health care services***.'" Third, “‘those damages were recoverable against the defendant in a civil action.’” Moreno Hernandez, 365 Or at __ (quoting State v. Barkley, 315 Or 420, 438, 846 P2d 390 (1993)).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Remedies

July 5 summaries

Dept. of Human Services v. J.C.

“The plain text of ORS. 419B.366(6)…establishes two ways a general guardianship can end: when the court terminates the guardianship pursuant to ORS 419B.368 or when the court’s jurisdiction over the ward ends pursuant to ORS 419B.328.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Juvenile Law

Pilling v. Travelers Ins. Co

Under ORS 656.128, an application for workers' compensation insurance must be in writing, request coverage for a specific person, and contain sufficient information for an insurer to determine the person's work classification and wage for the purposes of setting a preliminary rate for the coverage.

Area(s) of Law:
  • Workers Compensation

Eastern Oregon Mining Assoc. v. DEQ

If there is ambiguity in the text of the Clean Water Act, courts must look to the agencies' implementing regulations and if those regulations are ambiguous, to the agencies' interpretation and application of their regulations to determine what the act means. Coeur Alaska, Inc. v. Southeast Alaska Conservation Council, 557 US 261, 277-78, 129 S Ct 2458, 174 L Ed 2d 193 (2009)

Area(s) of Law:
  • Environmental Law

Powell Street I v. Multnomah County Assessor

“If the owner of a shopping center has driven out tenants by mismanagement, then that mismanagement is a characteristic of the owner and generally should not affect the property’s real market value for ad valorem tax purposes.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Tax Law

State v. Gensitskiy

“When the same conduct or criminal episode, though violating only one statutory provision involves two or more victims, there are as many separately punishable offenses as there are victims.” ORS 161.067(2).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

August 5 summaries

Friends of Columbia Gorge v. Energy Facility Siting Council

When rulemaking, and upon request, an administrative agency "…shall provide a statement that identifies the objective of the rule and a statement of how the agency will subsequently determine whether the rule is in fact accomplishing that objective.” ORS 183.335(3)(d).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Administrative Law

Kramer v. City of Lake Oswego

Oregon owns the lands underlying navigable waters of the state as a representative of the people and "the ownership is that of the people in their united sovereignty, while the waters remain public so that all persons may use the same for navigation and fishing," and the rights flowing from ownership of submersible lands includes a right of pass from the upland border of that land to the adjacent water. See generally Corvallis Sand & Gravel v. Land Board, 250 Or 319, 439 P2d 575 (1968), Eagle Cliff Fishing Co. v. McGowan, 70 Or 1, 137 P 766 (1914), & Smith Tug v. Columbia-Pac. Towing, 250 Or 612, 443 P2d 205 (1968).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Water Rights

Troubled Asset Solutions v. Wilcher

The gross negligence element of contract reformation requires “considering whether reformation would prejudice the other party to the transaction or a third party, as well as whether other equities may favor one party over the other.”

Area(s) of Law:
  • Contract Law

Caren v. Providence Heealth System-Oregon

Once an accepted injury is no longer the “major contributing cause” of a combined condition, an employer may reduce the amount they must pay in compensation by (1) proving the injury is no longer a “major contributing cause” and (2) issuing a written denial to the employee. ORS 656.262(7)(b); ORS 656.268(1)(b); ORS 656.266(2)(a).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Workers Compensation

State v. Carpenter

"'[C]onceal' requires conduct by the defenant that hides the person who committed a crime punishable as a felony from ordinary observation."

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

September 0 summaries

October 0 summaries

November 1 summary

State v. Hedgpeth

"[F]acts in issue can 'be established by reasonable inferences, but not through speculation.'" State v. Jesse, 360 Or 584, 597 P3d 1063 (2016).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

December 3 summaries

State v. Guzman/Heckler

"[C]lose element matching requires a foreign offense have 'elements that are the same as or nearly the same as the elements of' the Oregon crime to which it is compared." State v. Carlton, 361 Or 29, 43, 388 P3d 1093 (2017).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

State v. Henderson

“A person commits the crime of burglary ‘if the person enters or remains unlawfully in a building with intent to commit a crime therein.’” ORS 164.215(1) (emphasis added).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Criminal Law

Staveland v. Fisher

In non-marital domestic partnership dissolution cases, distribution of assets is determined by the express or implied intent of the parties as a question of fact and is reviewed as such. Beal v. Beal, 282 Or at 115, 121-22, 577 P2d 507 (1978).

Area(s) of Law:
  • Family Law

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