Fuchs v. Idaho State PoliceAnnotate this Case
The issue on appeal to the Supreme Court concerned Appellant Daniel Fuchs appeal of a district court's decision which found that the Director of the Idaho State Police Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) had properly exercised his discretion when he ruled that neither party had been a prevailing party for the purposes of attorney fees. Fuchs was issued a Retail Alcohol Beverage License and subsequently opened Aubrey's House of Ale (Aubrey's) in Coeur d'Alene. The Alcohol Beverage Control Bureau Chief conducted an unannounced inspection of the premises. After this inspection, ABC filed a Complaint for Forfeiture or Revocation of Retail Alcohol Beverage License regarding Fuchs's license. Eventually, the parties filed cross motions for summary judgment in the action before an ABC hearing officer. After oral argument, the hearing officer granted summary judgment to Fuchs. On appeal to the Director of the ABC, the Director did not order Fuchs' license revoked because of confusion surrounding the proper interpretation of the applicable rule under which Fuchs was cited. The Director's Final Order addressed the hearing officer's erroneous application of quasi-estoppel and Fuchs' unsuccessful arguments regarding improper rulemaking and claim that the agency acted arbitrarily. The Director denied attorneys' fees to both parties, declaring neither was the prevailing party because neither acted without a reasonable basis in fact or law. Upon review, the Supreme Court agreed that Fuchs was not a prevailing party and affirmed the district court's decision to deny fees.