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.

Tort Law Appellate Court Opinion

by Booth, George


AC41561 - Dept. of Social Services v. Freeman (Conversion; child support lien; expert witness disclosure; "The defendant, Justin Freeman, a Hartford attorney, appeals from the judgment of the trial court rendered against him, after a jury trial, finding him liable for conversion and awarding damages to the plaintiff, the Department of Social Services. The judgment was based on the defendant's failure to comply with a child support lien against the settlement proceeds of a client's personal injury action, of which he allegedly had been given due notice, before distributing such proceeds to himself, his client's other creditors, and his client. The defendant, who claimed at trial that he had never been served with the notice of lien that the plaintiff alleged it had sent to him, asserts that the trial court erred by (1) allowing the plaintiff to disclose an expert witness immediately before the start of trial to support its claim that the notice of lien had likely been delivered to him because it had been mailed to the correct address, albeit not to the correct zip code, (2) allowing the plaintiff's counsel to question him before the jury as to a prior conversion action that had been brought against him by an unrelated third party, and (3) allowing the biological mothers of his client's two minor children to testify that his client owed them child support. We affirm the judgment of the trial court.")