Constitutional

Jan. 14, 2022 – T​he state Department of Public Instruction (DPI) impermissibly inquired into religious doctrine in determining that two private schools in Washington County were affiliated with the Roman Catholic Church, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has ruled.In

St. Augustine School v. Underly, 2021 WL 5998534 (Dec. 20, 2021), a three-judge panel held that by relying on a profession of Catholic affiliation on one of the school’s websites, DPI violated the First Amendment’s
Continue Reading Reliance on Label ‘Catholic’ to Find Schools’ Attendance Areas Overlapped Was Unconstitutional

Jan. 14, 2022 – A Wisconsin appellate court has ruled that a prosecutor who repeatedly argued that a victim’s testimony was “uncorroborated” violated the constitutional right of a criminal defendant who did not testify during the trial.In

State v. Hoyle, 2020AP187-CR, (Jan. 11, 2022), the Court of Appeals District III held that the multiple mentions of the uncorroborated testimony constituted improper references to the defendant’s decision not to testify and violated his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.‘Someone is
Continue Reading Mention of ‘Uncorroborated’ Testimony Violated Defendant’s Right Against Self Incrimination

Jan. 14, 2022 – A presumption against granting custody to an abusive parent can only be overcome with proof that the parent has completed treatment for batterers from a certified program or from a certified provider, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals has ruled.In

Valadez v. Valadez, 2020AP1006 (Dec. 29, 2021), the Court of Appeals District II held that a circuit court erred in concluding that an abusive parent had overcome the presumption against granting him custody by completing
Continue Reading Court Erred by Ruling That Non-Certified Treatment Overcame Custody Presumption

Jan. 12, 2022 – The Wisconsin Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on a lawsuit filed over the decennial re-drawing of the state’s congressional and legislative districts at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 19. The date and time were set in an order issued on Jan. 11.​
Redistricting must take place every 10 years to account for shifts in population, and comply with other federal and state laws. The Republican-controlled Wisconsin Legislature drew new maps after the 2020 census, but
Continue Reading Wisconsin Supreme Court Will Hear Arguments in Redistricting Lawsuit on Jan. 19

Jan 12, 2022 – A company that repossessed a car from an apartment building garage violated the Wisconsin Consumer Act (WCA), the Wisconsin Supreme C​​​ourt has ruled.

In Duncan v. Asset Recovery Specialists, Inc., 2019AP1365, (Jan. 06, 2022) the supreme court held that for purposes of the WCA’s prohibition against a creditor entering a residential dwelling to repossess collateral or leased goods, the garage was included within the term “dwelling used by the customer as a residence.”
The decision
Continue Reading Company Violated Consumer Protection Law by Repo’ing Car From Attached Apartment Garage

Jan. 5, 2021 – Two retired Milwaukee police officers who were rehired by the city lost the right to begin receiving retirement benefits at age 57, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals has ruled.
In Miller v. City of Milwaukee, 2020AP1346 (Dec. 28, 2021), the Court of Appeals District I held that because they were rehired as general employees, the two former police officers were entitled to begin receiving retirement benefits at the age of 60.
Re-hired After Retirement
Continue Reading Re-hiring Changed Minimum Retirement Age for Retired Milwaukee Police Officers

 Dec. 28, 2021 – A state appeals court has ruled that a trace amount of heroin found on a defendant provides a basis for the offense of narcotics possession, because a jury could have reasonably inferred from compelling circumstantial evidence of recent drug use that the defendant knowingly possessed the heroin.In

State v. Chentis, 2020AP1699-CR (Dec 1, 2021), the Court of Appeals District II held that Nakyta. T. Chentis had failed to demonstrate that withdrawing his plea to
Continue Reading Circumstantial Evidence Means Trace Amount of Heroin Is Sufficient to Sustain Conviction

Dec. 28, 2021 – The decision of an administrative law judge (ALJ) that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) failed to comply with state law in issuing permits for a frac sand facility was supported by substantial evidence, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals has ruled.  In Meteor Timber, LLC v. Wisconsin Division of Hearings, 2020AP1869 (Dec. 16, 2021), the Court of Appeals District IV upheld the ALJ’s reversal of the DNR’s decision to issue the permits.  Mining
Continue Reading Appeals Court Upholds ALJ’s Decision Denying Permit for Frac Sand Facility

 Dec. 28, 2021 – The Wisconsin Court of Appeals has certified an appeal over a victims’ rights ballot measure adopted last year to the Wisconsin Supreme Court.In Wisconsin Justice Initiative, Inc. v. Wisconsin Elections Commission, 2020AP2003 (Dec. 21, 2021), a three-judge panel held that certifying the appeal to the supreme court was necessary to clarify the central question raised by the appeal: whether the ballot question submitting the measure to voters was legally insufficient.In its certification, the court
Continue Reading Court of Appeals Sends Challenge to Victim Rights Measure to Supreme Court

 Dec 28, 2021 – State law does not grant a municipality the right to file a writ of certiorari challenging a board of review’s property tax assessment, the Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled.In City of Waukesha v. City of Waukesha Board of Review, 2019AP1479 (Dec. 22, 2021) the supreme court unanimously held that the statute that allows a party to file a writ of certiorari to challenge a property tax assessment grants that right only to taxpayers.Listing Prompted
Continue Reading City May Not File Certorari to Challenge Tax Assessment, Supreme Court Rules

Dec. 23, 2021 – A man with a history of filing frivolous lawsuits gave up his right to sue in forma pauperis by violating the terms of a litigation bar order, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit has ruled.In

Reed v. PF of Milwaukee Midtown, LLC, 16 F.4th 1229 (Oct. 28, 2021),  a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled that Melvin D. Reed would have to prepay all
Continue Reading Serial Litigator Forfeits Right to Sue in Forma Pauperis, Seventh Circuit Rules

 Dec. 22, 2021 – Placing visible restraints on a criminal defendant absent a determination that specific circumstances related to courtroom security or escape warrant it violates the Fourteenth Amendment, the U.S. Court of Appeals for Seventh Circuit has ruled.​​In
Wilber v. Hepp, 16 4th 1232 (Oct. 29, 2021), the court granted a habeas corpus petition filed by Danny Wilber.Disrespect to the CourtPolice arrested Wilber in January 2004, after David Diaz was shot to death at an after-hours house
Continue Reading Failure to Justify Defendant’s Visible Shackling Violated Fourteenth Amendment

Dec. 21, 2021 – Sovereign immunity does not bar a lawsuit filed by environmental groups against the Wisconsin Public Services Commission (PSC) and two of its commissioners, the U.S. Court of Appeals for Seventh Circuit has ruled.However, because the groups filed parallel lawsuits in state court, the federal suit will be stayed pending the disposition of the state suits. The groups filed the federal suit in December 2019. The lawsuit came three months after the PSC issued a permit authorizing
Continue Reading Seventh Circuit Stays Power Line Lawsuit Based on Abstention Doctrine

Dec. 13, 2021 – A medical records software company is not subject to statutory limits on fees for reproducing medical records, the Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled.  In

Townsend v. ChartSwap, LLC, 2019AP2034 (Nov. 26, 2021), the court held that a woman who sued the company failed to state a claim because the company was not a health care provider under the statute that sets limits on medical record fees.Additionally, the court held that the law of agency
Continue Reading Third-party Company Not Subject to Limits on Medical Record Fee

 ​Dec. 7, 2021 – Rescheduling a final hearing on an involuntary commitment resets the 48-hour deadline for filing a jury demand, the Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled.
Wis. Stat.
section 51.20(11)(a) requires that a person facing involuntary commitment invoke their right to a jury trial 48 hours before the time set for final hearing or waive the right.In

Waukesha County v. E.J.W., 2020AP370 (Nov. 23, 2021) the court held that a person who failed to demand a
Continue Reading Jury Demand Deadline in Commitment Cases Reset When Final Hearing is Rescheduled

 Dec. 7, 2021 – A man convicted on four counts of fleeing or eluding an officer after leading police on a high-speed chase is not entitled to have three of the convictions vacated on grounds of ineffective counsel, because the three convictions were not multiplicitous. In

State v. Wise, 2020AP1756-CR (Nov. 16, 2021), the Court of Appeals District IV heard an appeal from a denial of post-conviction relief filed by Roman Wise in Milwaukee County.After a high speed chase
Continue Reading Multiple Charges Arising from High-Speed Chase Not Multiplicitous, Appeals Court Holds