The mission of the Connecticut Judicial Branch is to serve the interests of justice and the public by resolving matters brought before it in a fair, timely, efficient and open manner.

2021 Major Public Acts

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4502

The Office of Legislative Research (OLR) has made available its Major Public Acts report for the 2021 legislative session:

These summaries, composed by the Office of Legislative Research (OLR) with the assistance of the Office of Fiscal Analysis (OFA), briefly describe the most significant, far-reaching, and publicly debated acts adopted by the General Assembly in its 2021 regular session and June Special Session. Acts that the secretary of the state has assigned a public act (PA), special act (SA),or resolution act (RA) number are identified by that number; otherwise, we refer to the bill or resolution number.

Not all provisions of the acts are included. More detailed summaries can be found at the OLR website.


Tort Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4501

SC20359 - DeMaria v. Bridgeport ("This certified appeal requires us to consider the extent to which a medical record is admissible as evidence pursuant to General Statutes § 52-174 (b) when that record contains an expert opinion and the author cannot be subject to cross-examination. The plaintiff, Victor DeMaria, appeals, upon our grant of his petition for certification, from the judgment of the Appellate Court, which reversed the judgment of the trial court rendered in accordance with a jury verdict awarding the plaintiff damages for injuries stemming from his fall on a sidewalk of the defendant, the city of Bridgeport. See DeMaria v. Bridgeport, 190 Conn. App. 449, 451, 211 A.3d 98 (2019). On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the Appellate Court incorrectly determined that the trial court should not have admitted into evidence a medical record containing the medical opinion of the plaintiff's treating physician assistant, Miriam Vitale, pursuant to § 52-174 (b), when the defendant was unable to cross-examine Vitale. We agree with the plaintiff and, accordingly, reverse the judgment of the Appellate Court.")


Criminal Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4500

SC20400 - State v. Watson (Whether supreme court should overrule State v. Morales, where appellate court held that trial court's postverdict determination of whether strangulation, unlawful restraint and assault occurred "Upon the same incident" under general statutes § 53a-64bb (b) does not violate right to a fair trial; "A jury found the defendant, James Henry Watson, guilty of three distinct crimes in connection with his attack on a single victim over the course of an eight or nine hour period on a single day in October, 2016, namely, assault in the third degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-61 (a) (1), unlawful restraint in the first degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-95 (a), and strangulation in the second degree in violation of General Statutes (Rev. to 2015) § 53a-64bb (a). This verdict implicates the provision in § 53a-64bb (b) providing in relevant part that "[n]o person shall be found guilty of strangulation in the second degree and unlawful restraint or assault upon the same incident . . . ." The trial court determined that the jury's findings were not "based upon the same incident" and rendered a judgment of conviction on all three counts in accordance with the jury's verdict. The defendant appealed on the ground that the prohibition in § 53a-64bb (b) designates an element of the offense of strangulation that must be decided by the jury. See Apprendi v. New Jersey, 530 U.S. 466, 490, 120 S. Ct. 2348, 147 L. Ed. 2d 435 (2000).

In this certified appeal, we consider whether the Appellate Court correctly concluded that the defendant's constitutional right to a jury trial was not violated when the trial court rather than the jury determined that the charges of assault in the third degree and unlawful restraint in the first degree were not "upon the same incident" as that giving rise to the charge of strangulation in the second degree. See State v. Watson, 192 Conn. App. 353, 361, 217 A.3d 1052 (2019). We affirm the judgment of the Appellate Court.")


Connecticut Law Journal - June 29, 2021

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4499

The Connecticut Law Journal, Volume LXXXII, No. 52, for June 29, 2021 is now available.

Contained in the issue is the following:

  • Table of Contents
  • Volume 337: Connecticut Reports (Pages 1 - 54)
  • Volume 337: Orders (Pages 901 - 904)
  • Volume 337: Cumulative Table of Cases Connecticut Reports
  • Volume 205: Connecticut Appellate Reports (Pages 304 - 532)
  • Volume 205: Cumulative Table of Cases Connecticut Appellate Reports
  • Miscellaneous Notices
  • Supreme Court Pending Cases
  • Notices of Connecticut State Agencies



Medical Malpractice Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Agati, Taryn

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4497

AC42469, AC42493, AC42505 - Kissel v. Center for Women's Health, P.C. ("This trilogy of appeals originated when the plaintiff, Judith Kissel, sustained serious burns to her left foot during the course of an acupuncture treatment. The plaintiff commenced a medical malpractice action against the treating acupuncturist, Reed Wang, and his place of employment, the Center for Women's Health, P.C. (Center).The plaintiff subsequently filed a third-party complaint alleging a product liability claim against Health Body World Supply, Inc., also known as WABBO, the distributor of a device commonly referred to as the Miracle Lamp (heat lamp), which injured her. After a trial on both the medical malpractice and product liability claims, the jury returned a verdict for the plaintiff on all counts, awarding her a total of $1 million in damages. Following the resolution of various postverdict motions, the court rendered judgment in accordance with the jury's verdict.

Wang, the Center, and WABBO each filed a separate appeal, docketed as AC 42469, AC 42493, and AC 42505, respectively. In AC 42469 and AC 42493, Wang and the Center claim that (1) the trial court improperly denied their motions to dismiss the medical malpractice action for failing to comply with General Statutes § 52-190a because the plaintiff failed to attach to her initial complaint an opinion letter from a similar health care provider and her efforts to cure this defect occurred outside of the limitation period, (2) the court improperly denied the request for an evidentiary hearing with respect to the jurisdictional facts related to the opinion letter, (3) the plaintiff failed to present sufficient evidence with respect to causation, and (4) the court improperly instructed the jury regarding expert testimony and causation. In AC 42505, WABBO claims that the court improperly denied its motions for a directed verdict and to set aside the verdict because the plaintiff failed to present sufficient evidence as to the element of causation. The plaintiff maintains that the judgment of the trial court should be affirmed.

In AC 42469 and AC 42493, we agree with Wang and the Center that the court improperly denied their motions to dismiss the plaintiff's medical malpractice complaint as a result of her failure to attach the requisite opinion letter to the complaint and to cure this defect by the expiration of the statute of limitations. In AC 42505, we conclude that the plaintiff presented sufficient evidence with respect to her product liability complaint. The court, therefore, properly denied WABBO's motions for a directed verdict and to set aside the verdict. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment with respect to Wang and the Center on the medical malpractice claims, and affirm the judgment with respect to the product liability claims.")


Habeas Appellate Court Opinions

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4496

AC43188 - Bosque v. Commissioner of Correction (“The petitioner claims that the habeas court abused its discretion in denying his petition for certification to appeal because (1) it should have been obvious to the court that his habeas counsel had provided constitutionally ineffective assistance and (2) he was denied his constitutional right to counsel because the court had failed to intervene when his counsel did not present any evidence in support of his claim that good cause existed to rebut the presumption of unreasonable delay in the filing of his petition. We dismiss the appeal.”)

AC43815 - Gonzalez v. Commissioner of Correction (“On appeal, the petitioner claims that the habeas court improperly rejected his claim that his right to due process under the federal and state constitutions was violated because General Statutes §§ 53a-81 and 53a-55a2 do not require the state to prove, as an essential element of accessorial liability for manslaughter in the first degree with a firearm, that he intended the principal’s use, carrying or threatened use of a firearm. We affirm the judgment of the habeas court.”)


Probate Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4494

AC42918, AC42919- Kemon v. Boudreau (Trusts; probate appeal; whether trial court erred in determining that plaintiff had abandoned various counts at trial on basis of his counsel's statements at closing argument and whether trial court erred in rendering judgment for defendant in probate appeal instead of dismissing appeal for lack of subject matter jurisdiction because appeal became moot during its pendency: "These consolidated appeals arise from a dispute between the plaintiff . . . who is a trust beneficiary, and the defendant . . . who is, among other things, the executor of the estate of the deceased trustee, Elizabeth Lee Kemon Boudreau (trustee). With respect to Docket No. AC 42918, the plaintiff appeals from the judgment of the trial court rendered in favor of the defendant on the plaintiff's amended complaint. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court improperly concluded that (1) he had abandoned at trial counts two, three, four, and six of his amended complaint, and (2) to the extent that the court addressed, in a postappeal articulation, the merits of his breach of fiduciary duty claim set forth in count four of his amended complaint, the court improperly determined that there was no evidence in the record demonstrating that the defendant breached any duty owed to the plaintiff. We agree with the plaintiff that the court committed error in concluding that he had abandoned the aforementioned counts of his amended complaint. Accordingly, we reverse in part the judgment rendered in AC 42918. With respect to Docket No. AC 42919, the plaintiff appeals from the judgment of the court rendered for the defendant in the plaintiff's appeal from a probate order approving an accounting. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court incorrectly rendered judgment in the defendant's favor notwithstanding that the probate appeal had been rendered moot. We conclude that the probate appeal became moot during its pendency, at which point the court was divested of subject matter jurisdiction over it. We further conclude that the form of the judgment is improper because the court's lack of subject matter jurisdiction necessitated a judgment dismissing the probate appeal, rather than a judgment for the defendant on the merits. Accordingly, we reverse the judgment rendered in AC 42919.")


Insurance Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4495

AC43361 - Finley v. Western Express, Inc. ("The plaintiff, Montavious Finley, brought the underlying action against the defendants, Western Express, Inc. (Western Express), and National Casualty Company (National Casualty), seeking to recover uninsured motorist benefits. The plaintiff appeals from the summary judgment rendered by the trial court in favor of the defendants. The plaintiff claims that the court misinterpreted applicable Connecticut law and disregarded public policy in concluding as a matter of law that the automobile insurance policy under which he sought to recover did not provide uninsured motorist coverage to him. Because the plaintiff has failed to challenge an independent basis for the court's ruling, we conclude that the appeal is moot. Accordingly, we dismiss the appeal.")


Administrative Appeal Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4493

AC43781 - Moulthrop v. State Board of Education (Administrative appeal; appeal from decision by defendant revoking plaintiff's initial educator and professional educator certificates pursuant to statute (§ 10-145b (i) (2)); "The plaintiff, Maria Moulthrop, appeals from the judgment of the trial court dismissing her administrative appeal from the decision of the defendant, the Connecticut State Board of Education (board), revoking her initial educator and professional educator certificates. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court erred by concluding that she failed to establish that the board's decision (1) was predicated on constitutional and statutory violations, and (2) was clearly erroneous in view of the reliable, probative and substantial evidence in the whole record. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Workers' Compensation Supreme Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4492

SC20167 - Clements v. Aramark Corp. ("This certified appeal requires us to decide whether injuries that an employee sustains in the course of her employment also arise out of that employment, and therefore are compensable under the Workers’ Compensation Act (act), General Statutes § 31-275 et seq., when the injuries result from an idiopathic fall from a standing position onto a level floor… Although we acknowledge that, under our reasoning in Savage, the Appellate Court was required to reach the result that it did, we now overrule Savage insofar as it concluded that an employee is entitled to compensation as a matter of law when, during the course of his or her employment, the employee is injured due to an idiopathic fall onto a level floor. In light of that determination, we further conclude that the decision of the board in the present case affirming the decision of the commissioner must be affirmed. Accordingly we are constrained to reverse the judgment of the Appellate Court.")


Foreclosure Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4490

SC20463 - U.S. Bank National Assn. v. Rothermel (Mootness; whether Appellate Court properly dismissed as moot defendant's appeal from denial of motion to open strict foreclosure judgment filed one day after title had vested in plaintiff; "The principal issue in this appeal is whether General Statutes § 49-15 (a) (1), which provides in relevant part that no judgment of strict foreclosure "shall be opened after the title has become absolute in any encumbrancer," deprives the trial and appellate courts of subject matter jurisdiction over a motion to open a judgment that, although filed after the law days have passed, invokes the trial court's continuing equitable authority. The defendant, appeals from the judgment of the Appellate Court dismissing her appeal from the trial court's denial of such a motion. In the present appeal, the defendant argues that (1) the Appellate Court's dismissal was improper because § 49-15 did not render her equitable claims moot, and (2) the trial court abused its discretion by denying her motion to open the judgment. The plaintiff, U.S. Bank National Association, argues in response that the prohibition on postvesting motions to open a judgment set forth in § 49-15 implicates the subject matter jurisdiction of our state courts and that, in any event, the defendant is not entitled to equitable relief on the merits. Although we agree with the defendant that the Appellate Court improperly dismissed her appeal in light of the equitable nature of the particular claims at issue, we conclude that the trial court did not abuse its discretion by denying the underlying motion to open the judgment. . .

The judgment of the Appellate Court is reversed and the case is remanded to that court with direction to affirm the trial court's denial of the defendant's motion to open the judgment on the merits.")


Criminal Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4489

SC20399 - State v. Alicea (Inconsistent verdicts; Whether the defendant's convictions of intentional assault in the first degree and reckless assault in the first degree were inconsistent.; "In State v. Nash, 316 Conn. 651, 666, 114 A.3d 128 (2015), we held that convictions of intentional assault in the first degree and reckless assault in the first degree may be legally consistent when each mutually exclusive mental state pertains to a different result. Thereafter, in State v. King, 321 Conn. 135, 145, 136 A.3d 1210 (2016) (King 2016), we applied this rationale to again conclude that convictions of intentional and reckless assault were legally consistent. This certified appeal requires us to determine whether this precedent governs the outcome of the present case. We conclude that it does.")


Connecticut Law Journal - June 22, 2021

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4488

The Connecticut Law Journal, Volume LXXXII, No. 51, for June 22, 2021 is now available.

Contained in the issue is the following:

  • Table of Contents
  • Volume 336: Connecticut Reports (Pages 819 - 854)
  • Volume 336: Orders (Pages 952 - 953)
  • Volume 336: Cumulative Table of Cases Connecticut Reports
  • Volume 205: Connecticut Appellate Reports (Pages 299 - 394)
  • Volume 205: Cumulative Table of Cases Connecticut Appellate Reports
  • Miscellaneous Notices
  • Notices of Connecticut State Agencies


Criminal Law Supreme Court Slip Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4487

SC20290 - State v. Courtney G. (Sexual assault in the first degree; Risk of injury to a minor; Whether trial court properly admitted evidence of victim's demeanor at family meeting; Whether defendant's right to a fair trial violated by prosecutorial impropriety during closing argument; Whether defendant's right to be present violated by state's invitation to jury to draw adverse inference of guilt based defendant's demeanor during trial; "Following a jury trial, the defendant, Courtney G., was convicted of two counts of sexual assault in the first degree in violation of General Statutes § 53a-70 (a) (1) and two counts of risk of injury to a child in violation of General Statutes § 53-21 (a) (2). On appeal, the defendant claims that (1) the trial court improperly admitted evidence of the victim's out-of-court demeanor, and (2) the prosecutor made improper remarks during closing argument and rebuttal in violation of his sixth amendment right to confrontation and his fourteenth amendment right to a fair trial. We affirm the judgment of conviction.")


Law Library Hours: June 16th - June 25th

   by Dowd, Jeffrey

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4476

Monday, June 21st

  • New London Law Library is closed.
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Tuesday, June 22nd

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  • Putnam Law Library is closed.
  • Torrington Law Library closes at 3:30 p.m.

Wednesday, June 23rd

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Thursday, June 24th

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Friday, June 25th

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See our regularly scheduled hours.


Habeas Appellate Court Opinion

   by Townsend, Karen

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4486

AC43187 - Banks v. Commissioner of Correction ("The petitioner claims that the habeas court abused its discretion in denying his petition for certification to appeal because (1) it should have been obvious to the court that his habeas counsel provided constitutionally ineffective assistance and (2) he was denied his constitutional right to counsel because the court failed to intervene when his counsel did not present any evidence in support of his claim that good cause existed to rebut the presumption of unreasonable delay in the filing of his petition. We dismiss the appeal.")


Contract Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Roy, Christopher

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4485

AC38167, AC38440, AC38442 - Reserve Realty, LLC v. Windemere Reserve, LLC ("These appeals, which return to us on remand from our Supreme Court, presently require us to determine whether certain real estate listing agreements are unenforceable because they fail to comply with the requirement contained in General Statutes § 20-325a that such agreements specify the duration of the authorization. Specifically, the plaintiffs, The Reserve Realty, LLC (Reserve Realty), and Theodore Haddad, Sr., as executor of the estate of Jeanette Haddad, seek to recover real estate brokerage fees (commissions) in connection with the sale and/or lease of (1) units in an apartment complex constructed and leased by the defendant BLT Reserve, LLC (BLT), and (2) commercial office space not yet constructed by the defendant Windemere Reserve, LLC (Windemere). For the reasons we set forth, we conclude that the trial court properly determined that the listing agreements are unenforceable because they fail to comply with § 20-325a and, accordingly, affirm the judgments of the trial court.")


Property Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Zigadto, Janet

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4484

AC43650 - Zealand v. Balber ("The plaintiff . . . appeals from the judgment of the trial court in this partition by sale action. On appeal, the plaintiff claims that the court improperly (1) concluded that she had a minimal interest in the property at issue, (2) excluded certain evidence that she sought to admit at trial, (3) exceeded its statutory authority under General Statutes § 52-500 (a) and (4) concluded that a payment of $25,000 by the defendant . . . to the plaintiff constituted just compensation for her interest in that property. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


Criminal Law Appellate Court Opinion

   by Booth, George

 https://jud.ct.gov/lawlib/LawLibNews/Posts/Post.aspx?Id=4482

AC42348 - State v. Sinchak (Murder; kidnapping in first degree; motion to correct illegal sentence; "The defendant, Anthony Sinchak, appeals from the judgment of the trial court, Hon. Ronald D. Fasano, judge trial referee, denying his motion to correct an illegal sentence, which, he claims, was imposed in violation of his right to due process guaranteed by the fourteenth amendment to the United States constitution. The defendant contends that the trial court improperly rejected his claim that the ninety-six year prison sentence he received in 1995, after a jury found him guilty of murder and kidnapping, was imposed in retaliation for his refusal to forgo a trial and accept a plea deal, offered at a judicial pretrial conference by the judge who conducted the conference, pursuant to which he would be sentenced to a term of imprisonment of thirty years if he agreed to plead guilty to the murder charge. We disagree with the defendant's claim and, accordingly, affirm the judgment of the trial court.")


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