Kentucky Supreme Court Decisions

The Kentucky Supreme Court provides governing interpretations of state laws and sets rules of practice and procedure for members of the legal profession in Kentucky. The Court reviews cases involving the death penalty, life imprisonment, or a term of imprisonment lasting at least 20 years on direct appeal from the trial court. Other cases must proceed through lower appellate courts before reaching the Supreme Court, and the Supreme Court will review these appeals only if the lower appellate court consents.

Seven justices sit on the Kentucky Supreme Court, serving eight-year terms. To be eligible to serve as a justice, a candidate must be a U.S. citizen, a resident of Kentucky and the district that elects them for at least the last two years, and licensed to practice law in Kentucky for at least the last eight years. Kentucky uses a system of non-partisan elections to choose justices. This means that the party affiliation of a candidate does not appear on the ballot. Each of the seven appellate districts in Kentucky elects a justice. The justices elect the Chief Justice, who serves a four-year term.

In recent years, the Kentucky Supreme Court has issued several notable and controversial decisions. For example, a 2012 decision struck down gun bans on university and college campuses as applied to guns that are stored in a vehicle. This case arose from events at the University of Kentucky, and seven other universities in the state supported the position of the University during the litigation. However, the Court rejected their arguments, finding that state laws prevent organizations from prohibiting gun owners from carrying their guns in their vehicles.

Browse Opinions From the Kentucky Supreme Court

Recent Decisions From the Kentucky Supreme Court
Elder v. Kentucky Retirement Systems  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2017-SC-0258-DG

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the opinion of the court of appeals affirming the decision of the Board of Trustees of the Kentucky Retirement Systems denying Edward Elder's application for disability retirement benefits, hol...

Metzger v. Auto-Owners Insurance Co.  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2018-SC-0070-DG

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the decision of the court of appeals affirming the ruling of the trial court granting summary judgment for Insurer on Plaintiff's action seeking a declaration that Insurer was obligated to prov...

Isaacs v. Sentinal Insurance Co. Ltd.  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2018-SC-0078-DG

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the opinion of the court of appeals affirming the trial court's summary judgment in favor of Insurer, holding that the trial court did not err in finding that Plaintiff did not qualify as an in...

Louisville & Jefferson County Metropolitan Sewer District  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2018-SC-0491-DG

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgment of the court of appeals reversing the trial court's grant of summary judgment in favor of Louisville & Jefferson County Metropolitan Sewer District (MS...

Family Trust Foundation of Kentucky, Inc. v. Kentucky Horse Racing Commission  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2018-SC-0630-TG

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case considering the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission's regulations as applied to historical horse racing the Supreme Court reversed the order of the circuit court determining that the Encore system constitutes a...

Hubers v. Commonwealth  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2018-SC-0667-MR

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant's conviction of murder and sentence of life imprisonment, holding that there was no prejudicial error in the proceedings below. Specifically, the Supreme Court held that the trial co...

Kenton County Board of Adjustment v. Meitzen  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2018-SC-0677-DG

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed the court of appeals' decision reversing the circuit court's order dismissing Property Owners' appeal from the decision of the Kenton County Board of Adjustment granting approval of a condition...

GILBERT HALL V. COMMONWEALTH OF KENTUCKY
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2019-SC-0023-MR
Deal v. Commonwealth  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2019-SC-0175-DG

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court reversed Defendant's conviction of second-degree manslaughter by complicity, holding that the trial court committed reversible error when it allowed the Commonwealth to present a thirty-five-minute vide...

Dolt, Thompson, Shepherd & Conway, P.S.C.  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Numbers: 2019-SC-0197-DG, 2019-SC-0199-DG

Justia Opinion Summary: In this case related to the disbursement of Purdue Pharma funds, the Supreme Court reversed the court of appeals' grant of summary judgment for the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) and Dolt Thompson declaring that a...

CARLOS DEANDRE JENKINS V. COMMONWEALTH OF KENTUCKY
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Numbers: 2019-SC-0252-MR, 2018-SC-0560-MR
LESLIE LEE PARSON V. COMMONWEALTH OF KENTUCKY
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2019-SC-0318-MR
Calloway County Sheriff's Department v. Woodall  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Numbers: 2019-SC-0391-WC, 2019-SC-0419-WC

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court affirmed the court of appeals' opinion affirming the decision of the Workers' Compensation Board, holding that Karen Woodall, the surviving spouse of an employee who died as a result of a workplace acci...

KAY SHELTON, ET AL. V. AMY HOLTKAMP
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2019-SC-0501-DG
Commonwealth v. Curry  
Date: September 24, 2020
Docket Number: 2019-SC-0696-CL

Justia Opinion Summary: The Supreme Court held that Ky. Rev. Stat. 189.390 subsections (3)-(5) do not violate the due process provisions of the United States and Kentucky Constitutions on the grounds that the speed limit statutes are unconstitu...

The opinions published on Justia State Caselaw are sourced from individual state court sites. These court opinions may not be the official published versions, and you should check your local court rules before citing to them. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site, or the information linked to on the state site.