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Monday, October 29, 2007

You Stole My Wife!

Alienation of affections is a rare legal cause of action that allows one to sue another for luring his or her spouse away. Tennessee no longer recognizes this cause of action. Mississippi, however, still does, to wit:

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Mississippi Court of Appeals' Web Site

The status of the Mississippi Court of Appeals' opinion I posted on October 16, 2007 can be checked here:

The "Case Year:" is 2006 and the "Case Seq:" is 00385.

FYI: Mississippi's Rule 411 of Evidence is substantially similar to Tennessee's Rule 411.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Update on Mississippi Case

I promised you an update on Wells v. Tucker, No. 2006-CA-00385-COA (Miss. Ct. App. Sept. 4, 2007). Per the Mississippi Appellate Court Clerk's Office, a motion for rehearing is pending. I will let you know more as soon as I find out.

Have a great weekend.

P.S. The Wells case was in my Oct. 16, 2007 post.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Health Cost Controls Inc. v. Gifford (Again)

The Tennessee Supreme Court today issued an opinion regarding whether or not an injured party has been made whole in a non-ERISA subrogation case. It's the second time the Court has had an opportunity to visit this case, to wit: Health Cost Controls Inc. v. Gifford, No. W2005-01381-SC-R11-CV (Tenn. S. Ct. Oct. 17, 2007) ("Health Cost Controls II").

Here's the link to the case:

The last paragraph of Health Cost Controls II sums it up and states:

We conclude that the trial court erred in its computation of Gifford's total recovery by failing to consider Gifford's recovery from all sources. We further conclude that the record is insufficient to determine whether Gifford has been made whole. On remand to the trial court, both parties will be permitted to present evidence. Gifford will have the burden of presenting evidence that sufficiently enables the trial court to make a reasonable assessment of his damages. The trial court will determine the monetary value of Gifford's recovery from all sources and the monetary value of all elements of Gifford's damages. Finally, if the trial court finds that Gifford has been made whole, reimbursement should be awarded to HCC only to the extent that Gifford's total recovery exceeds his total damages....

, slip op. at 6 (emphasis added).

The Court took issue with the fact that the trial court ignored Mr. Gifford's non-economic damages; it pointed out that the trial court should have calculated Mr. Gifford's non-economic damages "'as certain as the nature of the case permits'" Id., slip op. at 5-6 (quoting Overstreet v. Shoney's Inc., 4 S.W.3d 694, 703).
(By the way, Overstreet is a "must-read" case authored by Justice Koch when he was on the Court of Appeals.)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Evidence of Liability Insurance Allowed to Show Bias of Defense Expert; Held Not Unfairly Prejudicial

The Mississippi Court of Appeals held last month that evidence of liability insurance was admissible to show the bias of a defense expert under Mississippi's Rule 411 of Evidence. The case is Wells v. Tucker, No. 2006-CA-00385-COA (Miss. Ct. App. Sept. 4, 2007).

Here's the link:

I will check the status of this case tomorrow (i.e., if it was appealed to Mississippi Supreme Court). At the time of this post, it was too late to do that.

I know, a lot of you are thinking: "So what! That's one of the exceptions to Rule 411's exclusion of insurance." And you are exactly right. However, even if one of the Rule 411 exceptions are met (e.g., proof of agency, ownership, control, or bias or prejudice of a witness), some courts still exclude this information as being unfairly prejudicial under Rule 403. See generally Patton v. Rose, 892 S.W.2d 418 (Tenn. Ct. App. 1991).

The Wells case holds that this information is not unfairly prejudicial and allows it into evidence.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Miles Per Hour to Feet Per Second, Etc.

Here's a useful Web site that allows you to make conversion from, for example, miles per hour to feet per second, etc.

Here's the link:

P.S. Yes, we all know the formula: 30 mi/hr x 5,280ft/mi x 1 hr/3600 sec. = 44 ft/sec. This site just does the calculations for you.