Hance v. DoPS

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Hance v. DoPS - Case No. 990649-CA IN THE UTAH COURT OF APPEALS
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Lowell E. Hance,
Petitioner and Appellant,

v.

State of Utah, Department of Public Safety, Driver's License Division,
Respondent and Appellee.

MEMORANDUM DECISION
(Not For Official Publication)

Case No. 990649-CA

F I L E D
(December 23, 1999)



  1999 UT App 378 -----

Third District, Salt Lake Department
The Honorable Homer F. Wilkinson

Attorneys:
Lowell E. Hance, Salt Lake City, Appellant Pro Se
Jan Graham and James H. Beadles, Salt Lake City, for Appellee

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Before Judges Greenwood, Davis, and Orme.

PER CURIAM:

The trial court dismissed Hance's appeal of his ninety day driver's license suspension because the suspension had expired. The question before us is whether the case became moot and, if so, does it fall within an exception to mootness.

An issue is moot when "the requested judicial relief cannot affect the rights of the litigants." State v. Sims, 881 P.2d 840, 841 (Utah 1994) (citations omitted). However, moot issues may be considered if a case "presents an issue that affects the public interest, is likely to recur, and because of the brief time anyone is affected, is capable of evading review." Kehl v. Schwendiman, 735 P.2d 413, 415 (Utah Ct. App. 1987). Because this case, though technically moot, presents an issue that will likely evade review given the short period of such suspensions, the trial court should have considered the merits of Hance's appeal of his driver's license suspension.

Accordingly, we reverse the trial court's dismissal of Hance's underlying case and remand for further proceedings consistent with this decision.

Reversed and remanded.
 
 
 

______________________________

Pamela T. Greenwood,

Associate Presiding Judge
 
 
 

______________________________

James Z. Davis, Judge
 
 
 

______________________________

Gregory K. Orme, Judge