Friday First District Roundup 6-4-21

Quincy Communication, d.b.a. Tazz Roofing v. Donna Patrick 
Case #C200224
Quote from Judge Myers' Opinion:
Plaintiff-appellant Quincy Communication, d.b.a. Tazz Roofing (“Tazz”) appeals from the trial court’s entry granting judgment to defendant-appellee Donna Patrick following trial on Tazz’s claim for breach of contract.
In two assignments of error, Tazz challenges the sufficiency and the weight of the evidence supporting the trial court’s decision, specifically arguing that the trial court erred in determining that the liquidated-damages clause in the contract was unenforceable. Because we find that the trial court correctly determined that the liquidated-damages clause was unenforceable, and that its decision was supported by both the sufficiency and the weight of the evidence, we affirm the trial court’s judgment. 


Glenn Griffith, Leona Griffith v. Macallister Rental, LLC, John Doe Companies #1-5, John Doe Employee, Bureau of Workers' Compensation v. Architectural Glann & Metal, Co., Inc.  
Case #C200311  
Quote from Judge Bergeron's Opinion:
A construction worker suffered an injury after a boom lift allegedly malfunctioned and ejected him from the lift platform. In addition to receiving workers’ compensation benefits, the employee sued the rental company that provided the lift for negligent maintenance and related claims. In turn, the rental company sued the contractor that rented the lift from it, seeking to enforce an indemnity provision contained in the parties’ rental agreement. The trial court granted summary judgment in the contractor’s favor, reasoning that the indemnity agreement could not overcome Ohio’s workers’ compensation immunity with respect to claims arising from employment. After reviewing the law and the record, we agree with the trial court’s decision and affirm its judgment.
The facts of this case are uncontroverted. Third-party defendantappellee Architectural Glass served as a subcontractor on a large construction project in Cincinnati. To assist in completing the work, Architectural Glass rented a boom lift from third-party plaintiff-appellant MacAllister Rental. Both companies are located in Indiana, but MacAllister Rental agreed to deliver the lift to the job site in Ohio. As part of the rental agreement, Architectural Glass promised to indemnify MacAllister Rental from any liability arising out of the use of the lift, and to insure it from “loss or damage.” MacAllister Rental delivered the lift and Architectural Glass began using it, apparently without incident. However, Architectural Glass subsequently loaned the lift to another subcontractor on the project, and that subcontractor’s employee, Glenn Griffith, was injured after faulty settings allegedly caused the lift to buck him off. 


U.S. Bank, N.A., As Trustee, As Successor in Interest to Bank Of America, N.A., As Trustee, Successor by Merger to LaSalle Bank, N.A., As Trustee for the Registered Holders of CD 2006-CD3, Commercial Mortgage Pass-through Cerificates v. Higbee Lancoms, LP 
Case #C200247 
Quote from Judge Bock's Opinion: Defendant-appellant Higbee Lancoms, LP, (“Higbee”) appeals the trial court’s judgment, which held Higbee liable to plaintiff-appellee U.S. Bank National Association (“the Bank”) for past rent, common-area maintenance charges (“CAM”), taxes, carrying costs, and attorney’s fees totaling $831,902. For the reasons stated herein, we affirm.
Higbee operated a Dillard’s retail department store at 6290 Glenway Avenue in Cincinnati (“the premises”) under a lease (“the lease”) which began in 1998 and expired on July 14, 2018. Under the lease, Higbee was obligated to pay $56,250 per month in rent, along with taxes, CAM, and other operating expenses. The lease required any changes in the terms to be in writing and signed by both parties.
After some transfers, Dillard’s Realty Associates, LLC, assumed interest in the lease and the loan obligation. It defaulted and the Bank foreclosed on the property. Michael Bergman was appointed as the receiver in the foreclosure.


Mary Cowan v. Ohio Department of Job and Family Services 
Case #C200025
Quote from Judge Bergeron's Opinion:
A nursing home resident was denied Medicaid benefits because she owned two parcels of land valued at $6,000, exceeding the $2,000 resource limit. She appealed to the common pleas court, seeking to exclude the parcels because no one wanted to buy the land (she ultimately gave the land away). The case took a jurisdictional detour, however, when the trial court dismissed the resident’s appeal for lack of jurisdiction, reasoning that her authorized representative lacked standing to pursue the matter. But in the event we saw things differently on jurisdiction, the trial court alternatively affirmed the Medicaid denial because the resident had the legal ability to access (and liquidate) the property. We conclude that the trial court erred with respect to jurisdiction because the resident pursued this appeal in her own name and never made the authorized representative a party to the proceedings. Nevertheless, we affirm the trial court’s alternative holding that the resident’s property was a countable resource.
In September 2017, appellant Mary Cowan was admitted to Carespring, a long-term nursing facility. However, Ms. Cowan soon needed assistance with paying for her care, so, at the behest of the facility, she applied for Medicaid benefits. To facilitate this process, Ms. Cowan signed a “Designation of Authorized Representative” form, granting Carespring authority to submit her application, participate in eligibility reviews, and take necessary actions to establish eligibility. Ms. Cowan also provided Carespring permission to pursue legal action in her name or in Carespring’s name—even waiving potential conflicts of interest. 


In re: D.R.
Case #C190594
Quote from Judge Crouse's Opinion:
D.R. has appealed the judgment of the juvenile court continuing his classification as a Tier I juvenile-offender registrant under Ohio’s version of the Adam Walsh Act. We hold that D.R.’s continued classification as a Tier I juvenileoffender registrant violated his procedural due-process rights. Therefore, we reverse the juvenile court’s order continuing D.R.’s Tier I classification and remand this cause for a new completion-of-disposition hearing under R.C. 2152.84, during which the juvenile court may exercise its discretion to continue D.R.’s classification as a Tier I juvenile-offender registrant or declassify him.
On April 5, 2018, D.R. admitted in juvenile court to an act which, if committed by an adult, would have constituted gross sexual imposition against a victim under the age of 13. D.R. was 16 at the time of the offense; the victim was a 12-year-old friend. D.R. was committed to the Department of Youth Services (“DYS”) until age 21. The commitment was suspended, and he was placed on probation and ordered to complete the Lighthouse Youth Services Sex Offender Program. Because D.R. was 16 at the time of the offense, the juvenile court was required to classify him as a juvenile-offender registrant under R.C. 2152.83. On August 23, 2018, the juvenile court classified D.R. as a Tier I juvenile-offender registrant. 


In re: R.V. 
Case #C200170
Quote from Judge Winkler's Opinion:
Appellant father appeals a decision of the Hamilton County Juvenile Court granting custody of his daughter R.V. to appellee the child’s maternal greataunt. Great-aunt did not appear in this court. We find merit in father’s single assignment of error, and we reverse the juvenile court’s judgment.
R.V. was born on July 17, 2013. She lived with her mother and her half-sister until the three of them moved in with great-aunt due to mother’s illness. Mother passed away on October 17, 2018, after a failed heart transplant.
On October 23, 2018, great-aunt filed a petition for custody and a petition for emergency custody. The juvenile court denied the petition for emergency custody because the child was already living with great-aunt and there was no risk of imminent harm. The court ordered a custody investigation and set the matter for hearing on January 14, 2019. It further stated that paternity had not been established but that there was an alleged father who had to be served. 


Donna Smallwood v. Abubakar Atiq Durrani, M.D., West Chester Hospital, LLC, UC Health, Center for Advanced Spine Technologies, Inc., Christ Hospital 
Case #C190671 
Quote from Judgment Entry:
The court sua sponte removes these cases from the regular calendar and places them on the court’s accelerated calendar, 1st Dist. Loc.R. 11.1.1(A), and this judgment entry is not an opinion of the court. See Rep.Op.R. 3.1; App.R. 11.1(E); 1st Dist. Loc.R. 11.1.1.
These five consolidated appeals concern the latest in the long line of cases involving an alleged medical-fraud scheme by defendant Abubakar Atiq Durrani, M.D., and defendant-appellee The Christ Hospital (“TCH”). Plaintiffs-appellants are five former patients of Durrani who underwent various spinal surgeries at TCH. The surgeries did not improve any of appellants’ conditions. On the contrary, appellants experienced an array of painful and debilitating symptoms after the surgeries.
Appellants separately filed complaints against Durrani, TCH, and other associated entities. The claims asserted against TCH—which are the subjects of this appeal—included negligence, negligent credentialing, supervision, and retention, and fraud. However, all of appellants’ claims were filed more than four years after the underlying surgeries. Consequently, the trial court held that the four-year medicalmalpractice statute of repose barred all of appellants’ claims and dismissed all of the cases with prejudice. 


In re: L.Z.
Case #C210127
Quote from Judge Zayas' Opinion:
Appellant mother appeals the decision of the Hamilton County Juvenile Court granting permanent custody of her child to the Hamilton County Department of Job and Family Services (“HCJFS”). In a single assignment of error, mother contends that the trial court erred in awarding permanent custody to HCJFS. For the reasons discussed below, we find no merit in the assignment of error, and we affirm the judgment of the trial court.
L.Z. was born on October 22, 2019. Because mother had previously had her parental rights involuntarily terminated with respect to L.Z.’s five siblings in April and May of 2019, HCJFS filed a motion for interim custody, a motion for a determination that reasonable efforts were not required, and a complaint for permanent custody on October 25, 2019. That day, the parties stipulated to temporary custody to HCJFS, and on November 7, 2019, the magistrate granted the motion for a determination that reasonable efforts were not required, finding that the evidence established that HCJFS was previously awarded permanent custody of L.Z.’s older siblings. 


Joshua Rush, v. Kaia Khamisi 
Case #C200225
Quote from Judgment Entry:
Respondent-appellant Kaia Khamisi appeals from the trial court’s entry denying her motion to modify or terminate a domestic violence civil protection order. Khamisi and petitioner-appellee Joshua Rush share a son, A.K.
In March 2018, Rush filed for a domestic violence civil protection order against Khamisi after Khamisi absconded with A.K. from November 2017 until February 2018 while attempting to avoid arrest on a felony indictment. During that time period, Rush was unaware of A.K.’s whereabouts. Following a hearing, a magistrate in the Court of Domestic Relations issued the requested civil protection order. By its terms, the protection order was effective for five years and provided that Khamisi was to have no contact with A.K. and terminated her parental rights and responsibilities, including custody and visitation, during the life of the order. The trial court adopted the magistrate’s entry granting the protection order. Khamisi did not appeal that entry.