Iowa Supreme Court Decisions 2020

Pfaltzgraff v. Iowa Department of Human Services  
Date: May 29, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0189

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed in part and vacated in part the court of appeals' decision and affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgment of the district court, holding that a child-care provider whose provider agreem...

Endress v. Iowa Department of Human Services  
Date: May 29, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1329

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgment of the district court reversing the decision of the Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) that a child-care provider must pay back benefits the provi...

State v. Damme  
Date: May 29, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1139

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's sentence for theft after Defendant pleaded guilty, holding that "good cause" under the newly amended Iowa Code 814.6 means a "legally sufficient reason," and the good cause requirem...

State v. Henderson  
Date: May 29, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1425

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's sentence for indecent contact with a child, holding that Defendant satisfied the good-cause requirement to challenge his sentence as an abuse of discretion but that, on the merits,...

State v. Delong  
Date: May 22, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1763

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated the judgment of the district court ordering restitution in the amount of $2740.95 based upon testimony and exhibits submitted by the Crime Victim Compensation Program (CVCP), holding that the re...

Gray v. Oliver  
Date: May 22, 2020
Docket Number: 18-2076

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court held that judgment creditors cannot levy on their judgment debtor, obtain the judgment debtor's chose in action for legal malpractice against the attorney representing the judgment debtor in the litigat...

Doe v. State  
Date: May 22, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1402

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court granted Jane Doe's petition for writ of certiorari, sustained the writ, and vacated the order of the district court denying Doe's application to expunge her criminal record as to a particular case pursu...

Doe v. State  
Date: May 22, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1407

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court granted John Doe's petition for writ of certiorari, sustained the writ, and vacated the order of the district court denying Doe's application to expunge his criminal record as to a particular case pursu...

Doe v. State  
Date: May 22, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1413

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court granted Jane Doe's petition for writ of certiorari, sustained the writ, and vacated the order of the district court denying Doe's application to expunge her criminal record as to three separate cases pu...

State v. Beres  
Date: May 15, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0369

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the order of the district court denying Defendant's motion to dismiss four additional arson charges as breach of his plea agreement with the State as to second-degree arson, holding that the St...

State of Iowa v. Lori Dee Mathes
Date: May 8, 2020
Docket Number: 17-1909
Davis v. Iowa District Court for Scott County  
Date: May 8, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1008

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court upheld the district court's order directing Plaintiff and/or his attorney to pay reasonable expenses associated with one of the defendant's attendance at a court-ordered pretrial settlement conference d...

Gumm v. Easter Seal Society of Iowa, Inc.  
Date: May 1, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1051

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the order of the district court denying Claimant's petition for judicial review challenging the decision of the workers' compensation commissioner concluding that Claimant, who was receiving di...

State v. Gordon  
Date: May 1, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1099

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction for assault on a peace officer with a dangerous weapon, a felony, and several misdemeanors, holding that Defendant did not receive ineffective assistance of counsel. Aft...

In re the Marriage of Mann  
Date: May 1, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1910

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the order of the district court concluding that Husband, who had a recent income history less than that of Wife, was not entitled to alimony under the facts and circumstances developed at trial...

Dickey v. Iowa Ethics & Campaign Disclosure Board  
Date: May 1, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0094

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals affirming the judgment of the district court dismissing for lack of standing Attorney's petition for judicial review of the decision of the Iowa Ethics and...

Logan v. Bon Ton Stores, Inc.  
Date: May 1, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0608

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the district court dismissing Appellant's petition for judicial review, holding that timely faxing a petition for judicial review to the opposing party's counsel, where the peti...

State v. Doolin  
Date: April 24, 2020
Docket Number: 17-1715

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated in part and affirmed in part the decision of the court of appeals declining relief on Defendant's claims that his trial counsel provided ineffective assistance for failing to object to the crime...

State v. Booth-Harris  
Date: April 24, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0002

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of first-degree murder after declining Defendant's invitation to change constitutional precedent to further limit the admissibility of eyewitness identifications followin...

State v. Gibbs  
Date: April 17, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1298

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of murder in the second degree, holding that Defendant's Fifth Amendment rights were invaded when the trial judge instructed the jury that Defendant was required to notif...

MidWestOne Bank v. Heartland Co-op  
Date: April 17, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1302

Justia Opinion Summary: In this dispute between a secured lender (Bank) and a grain elevator (Elevator) the Supreme Court reversed in part the district court's judgment in favor of the Bank, holding that the district court erred by applying the...

State v. Wilson  
Date: April 10, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0564

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of voluntary manslaughter and assault with intent to cause serious injury, holding that Defendant was not entitled to a pretrial evidentiary hearing and that Defendants r...

Ommen v. MilliMan, Inc.  
Date: April 3, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0335

Justia Opinion Summary: In this appeal from the district court's denial of a motion to dismiss and compel arbitration the Supreme Court held that the court-appointed liquidator of a now-insolvent health insurer pursuing common law tort claims a...

State v. Folkers  
Date: April 3, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1999

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals affirming Defendant's conviction of child endangerment, holding that the evidence was sufficient to support Defendant's conviction. During trial, the State...

State v. Ross  
Date: April 3, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0939

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated Defendant's guilty plea to possessing a tool with the intent to use it in the unlawful removal of a theft detection device under Iowa Code 714.7B(3), holding that there was no factual basis to s...

Blue Grass Savings Bank v. Community Bank & Trust Co.  
Date: March 27, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0657

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the foreclosure decree entered by the district court giving priority under a future-advances clause to the full amount of credit extended by the first lienholder rather than the maximum amount...

Merrill v. Valley View Swine, LLC  
Date: March 27, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0821

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court finding that Plaintiffs had a "losing cause of action," concluding that Plaintiffs' claims against Defendants were frivolous, and granting Defendants' motion...

Roland v. Annett Holdings, Inc.  
Date: March 20, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1092

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the ruling of the district court certifying a class action of employees with pending workers' compensation claims, holding that the district court abused its discretion by certifying this case...

Lemartec Engineering & Construction v. Advance Conveying Technologies, LLC  
Date: March 20, 2020
Docket Number: 18-2183

Justia Opinion Summary: In this construction law case, the Supreme Court reversed the order of the circuit court granting summary judgment in favor of Appellee, holding that Appellee was not entitled to claim preclusion or issue preclusion even...

Susie v. Family Health Care of Siouxland, P.L.C.  
Date: March 12, 2020
Docket Number: 17-0908

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court granting summary judgment for Defendants on Plaintiffs' medical malpractice claims, holding that Plaintiffs failed to set forth specific facts showing a prima...

State v. Boyer  
Date: March 12, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1892

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court dismissed Appellant's appeal from an order of the district court directing Appellant to pay room and board reimbursement for the seventy-eight days Appellant spent in the Mills County jail, holding that...

Campuzano v. Iowa District Court for Polk County  
Date: March 12, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1985

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court annulled the writ of certiorari sought by Defendant after the district court denied his motion to correct an illegal sentence, holding that Iowa Code 124.413 and 901.12 serve to reduce the minimum perio...

State v. Fordyce  
Date: March 6, 2020
Docket Number: 17-1701

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated in part and affirmed in part the decision of the court of appeals affirming Defendant's conviction of voluntary manslaughter, holding that the court of appeals correctly found that the district...

State v. Majors  
Date: March 6, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0563

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court imposing a seventeen and one-half year mandatory minimum prison term before parole eligibility on Defendant's second resentencing for attempted murder during...

Sahinovic v. State  
Date: March 6, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1911

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals affirming the judgment of the district court dismissing Appellant's petition for postconviction relief, holding that the limitations period for challenging...

Munger, Reinschmidt & Denne, LLP v. Plante  
Date: March 6, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0519

Justia Opinion Summary: In this action brought by a law firm seeking to enforce its payment due under a contingency fee contract the Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court ordering judgment against the family that retained th...

Thornton v. American Interstate Insurance Co.  
Date: February 28, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0809

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the district court awarding Plaintiff compensatory and punitive damages in his action for first-party bad faith in connection with a workers' compensation claim, holding that th...

Sladek v. Employment Appeal Board  
Date: February 21, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0981

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals affirming the judgment of the district court upholding the final agency action of the Employment Appeal Board (EAB) denying unemployment benefits, holding t...

33 Carpenters Construction, Inc. v. Cincinnati Insurance Co.  
Date: February 14, 2020
Docket Number: 17-1979

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals affirming the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Cincinnati Insurance Company in this insurance dispute, holding that, for the reasons s...

Irland v. Iowa Board of Medicine  
Date: February 14, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0353

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated the court of appeals' decision affirming the district court's dismissal of a physician's petition for judicial review of the Iowa Board of Medicine's decision to use a "confidential letter of wa...

33 Carpenters Construction, Inc. v. State Farm Fire & Casualty Co.  
Date: February 14, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1354

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the district court's grant of summary judgment for an insurer on the grounds that the plaintiff's contractual assignment was unenforceable, holding that a residential contractor acting as an un...

In re 2018 Grand Jury of Dallas County v. Doe  
Date: February 14, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1534

Justia Opinion Summary: In this appeal challenging several district court rulings in a grand jury proceeding the Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgment of the district court, holding that the State cannot subpoena a cr...

33 Carpenters Construction, Inc. v. IMT Insurance Co.  
Date: February 14, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0678

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the district court granting summary judgment in favor of an insurer on the grounds that the plaintiff's contractual assignment was unenforceable, holding that a residential cont...

Iowa Supreme Court Attorney Disciplinary Board v. Duane J. Goedken
Date: February 14, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1740
Standard Water Control Systems, Inc. v. Jones  
Date: February 7, 2020
Docket Number: 17-2009

Justia Opinion Summary: In this dispute over Contractor's attorney fees the Supreme Court affirmed the judgment of the district court finding that Homeowners waived their assertion that including attorney fees in a mechanic's lien foreclosure d...

Homeland Energy Solutions, LLC v. Retterath  
Date: February 7, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0950

Justia Opinion Summary: In this breach of contract action involving the repurchase of all of a limited liability company's (LLC) member's membership interests, the Supreme Court reversed in part the district court's determination that the LLC w...

In re Interest of B.H.A.  
Date: January 31, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0813

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated the decision of the court of appeals affirming the determination of the juvenile court that termination of Father's parental rights was not in the child's best interest, holding that Iowa Code c...

State v. Meyers  
Date: January 31, 2020
Docket Number: 18-2222

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of boating while intoxicated in violation of Iowa Code 462A.14(1), holding that Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) officers had probable cause to stop Defendant's...

State v. Veverka  
Date: January 31, 2020
Docket Number: 19-0603

Justia Opinion Summary: In this criminal case in which Defendant was charged with sexually abusing his fourteen-year-old daughter, S.V., the Supreme Court reversed the district court's preliminary ruling that a video recording of a forensic int...

Jones v. State  
Date: January 24, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0745

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the postconviction relief (PCR) court dismissing Appellant's fourth PCR application, holding that under this Court's holding today in Thongvanh v. State, __ N.W.2d __ (Iowa 2020...

Thongvanh v. State  
Date: January 24, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0885

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the district court dismissing Appellant's application for postconviction relief (PCR) claiming a violation of his constitutional right to an impartial jury drawn from a fair cro...

State v. Leedom  
Date: January 24, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1947

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court conditionally affirmed Defendant's convictions but remanded the case for an in camera inspection of the victim's mental health records, holding that the district court erred by failing to conduct the in...

Iowa Supreme Court Attorney Disciplinary Board v. Beau A. Bergmann
Date: January 24, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1662
State v. Kuhse  
Date: January 17, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0765

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court vacated the decision of the court of appeals reversing Defendant's conviction on the basis that the district court inadequately instructed the jury on Defendant's justification defense, holding that the...

Hollingshead v. DC Misfits, LLC  
Date: January 17, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1225

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the district court granting a Des Moines bar's motion for summary judgment and dismissing an injured party's dramshop action on the ground that the notice given to the bar or it...

Iowa Supreme Court Attorney Disciplinary Board v. T.J. Hier
Date: January 17, 2020
Docket Number: 19-1320
State v. Bynum  
Date: January 10, 2020
Docket Number: 18-0294

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals affirming the judgment of the district court convicting Defendant of making a false report alleging the occurrence of the criminal act of carrying weapons,...

Karon v. Elliott Aviation  
Date: January 10, 2020
Docket Number: 18-1199

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the order of the district court dismissing this action presenting the question of what must be shown to avoid the effects of a contractual forum-selection clause, holding that fraud in general...

Milligan v. Ottumwa Police Department  
Date: January 3, 2020
Docket Number: 17-1961

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the district court granting Plaintiff's petition for mandamus and ordering the City of Ottumwa to disclose names of all persons who had and had not been issued automated traffic...

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