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Case Summary for January 12, 2016

THE FOLLOWING DOCKET SUMMARIES ARE PREPARED BY THE COURT'S STAFF FOR THE INTEREST AND CONVENIENCE OF THE READER. THE SUMMARIES MAY NOT INCLUDE ALL ISSUES PENDING BEFORE THE COURT AND DO NOT REFLECT ANY OPINION OF THE COURT ON THE MERITS OF A CASE. COPIES OF ALL BRIEFS FILED WITH THE COURT ARE AVAILABLE AT THE SUPREME COURT BUILDING, COURT EN BANC DIVISION. SUMMARIES ARE UNOFFICIAL AND SHOULD NOT BE QUOTED OR CITED.


Attached to the following docketed cases are electronic copies of briefs filed by the parties. These electronic briefs have been converted to PDF to accommodate various word processors. If you do not already have Acrobat reader, which is necessary to open the PDFs, you may obtain it free at the Adobe website. (A set of free tools that allow visually disabled users to read documents in Adobe PDF format is available from access.adobe.com.) These briefs do not reflect any opinion of the Court about the appropriateness of the format of the briefs or the merits of the case, nor are they official court records. Copies of all briefs filed with the Court are available at the Supreme Court Building in the court en banc division.

The attachments below may not reflect all briefs filed with the Court, the complete filing or the format of the original filing. Appendices and other attachments generally will not be posted here. To see what documents have been filed in a particular case, visit Case.net.



DOCKET SUMMARIES
SUPREME COURT OF MISSOURI

9:30 a.m. Tuesday, January 12, 2016
____________________________________________________________________________________________________

SC94822
State ex rel. Steven Pinkerton v. The Honorable Joel P. Fahnestock
Jackson County
Challenge to order compelling arbitration
Listen to the oral argument: SC94822.mp3SC94822.mp3
Pinkerton was represented during arguments by Kevin A. Jones of The Meyers Law Firm in Kansas City; the aviation institute was represented by Ramsay C. McCullough of Jackson Lewis PC in Norfolk, Virginia.

Steven Pinkerton graduated in May 2011 from the Aviation Institute of Maintenance but apparently was unable to find a job in the field. He subsequently sued the institute and two of its principals (collectively, the institute) for fraud; the institute moved to compel arbitration pursuant to a clause in its enrollment agreement. After partial discovery, the circuit court granted the motions to compel arbitration. Pinkerton now seeks this Court’s writ prohibiting the circuit court from enforcing its order and instead mandating that the circuit court deny arbitration.

This case presents several issues for the Court related to whether an arbitration agreement actually was formed or, if it has, whether it can be enforced. One involves whether the circuit court should have permitted additional discovery before determining whether an arbitration agreement was formed under Missouri contract law. Another is whether a court legally may delegate to an arbitrator threshold questions about whether an arbitration agreement has been formed or can be enforced and whether the circuit court delegated either issue here.

SC94822_Pinkerton_brief.pdfSC94822_Pinkerton_brief.pdfSC94822_Technical_Education_Services_brief.pdfSC94822_Technical_Education_Services_brief.pdfSC94822_Pinkerton_reply_brief.pdfSC94822_Pinkerton_reply_brief.pdf


SC95093
Shelter Insurance Company v. Jeanie Vasseur, Matthew Vasseur, By and Through His Guardian ad Litem, Adam Vasseur, Charlotte Vasseur, Jackie Strydom, Andrea Postelwait, Sarita Vasseur, and Michael Vasseur
Texas County
Coverage under insurance policies for death arising from all-terrain vehicle accident
Listen to the oral argument: SC95093.mp3SC95093.mp3
Shelter was represented during arguments by W. Clayton Crawford of Foland, Wickens, Eisfelder, Roper & Hofer PC in Kansas City; the family was represented by H. Lynn Henry of Henry & Williams PC in West Plains.

Parents had a farmowners insurance policy and three automobile insurance policies issued by Shelter Insurance Company. In August 2010, their son was operating an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) along a highway in Texas County with his father as his passenger. The son failed to negotiate a curve effectively, and the ATV veered, striking a sign; the father was killed in the accident. The mother subsequently made an insurance claim against her son, claiming the son negligently caused his father’s death. Shelter denied both liability coverage and medical payment coverage for the mother’s claims under the “household” exclusions in the farmowners policy. Shelter also denied uninsured motorist, medical payments and accidental death coverage for the father’s death because it did not arise from the operation, use or maintenance of a “motor vehicle” as defined by the automobile policies. In 2011, Shelter filed a petition asking the circuit court to declare that: it owes no duty to defend or indemnify the son against allegations for damages arising from his father’s death under the farmowners policy; the farmowners policy does not provide coverage for medical payments for damages arising from the father’s death; neither uninsured motorist coverage nor medical payments coverage is available under the three automobile policies for damages arising from the ATV accident; and accidental death coverage is unavailable under the automobile policies for the father’s death. The circuit court ultimately granted judgment to the family, finding coverage under the farmowners policy as well as the three automobile policies and awarding the family $207,000 in damages. Shelter appeals.

This case presents several questions for the Court. One is whether the farmowners policy excludes coverage for damages arising from the bodily injury or death of the father as a named insured. Another is whether the farmowners policy limits medical payments coverage only to those other than the insured or whether such coverage can be provided to the father as a named insured. Additional questions involve whether an ATV fits the automobile policies’ definition of a “motor vehicle” so as to provide uninsured motorist, accidental death and medical payments coverage for damages arising from the operation of an ATV. A final question is whether the circuit court’s finding that the farmowners policy provided liability coverage for the son precludes the court’s additional finding that the automobile policies provided uninsured motorist coverage or whether the son’s entitlement to liability coverage means the ATV was not an “uninsured motor vehicle” as defined by the automobile policies.

SC95093_Shelter_Mutual_Insurance_Co_brief.pdfSC95093_Shelter_Mutual_Insurance_Co_brief.pdfSC95093_Vasseur_brief.pdfSC95093_Vasseur_brief.pdfSC95093_Shelter_Mutual_Insurance_Co_reply_brief.pdfSC95093_Shelter_Mutual_Insurance_Co_reply_brief.pdf


SC95029
Office Depot Inc. v. Director of Revenue
Cole County
Imposition of use tax on printed materials distributed to Missouri customers
Listen to the oral argument: SC95029.mp3SC95029.mp3
The director was represented during arguments by Solicitor General James R. Layton of the attorney general’s office in Jefferson City; Office Depot was represented by Marc H. Ellinger of Blitz, Bardgett & Deutsch LC in Jefferson City.

Office Depot Inc. is an out-of-state company that uses catalogs and other printed materials to advertise its products to its Missouri customers. It has those materials printed out of state with paper also purchased out of state. The printer then mails the materials into Missouri to addresses specified by Office Depot. Based on its total cost for the paper, printing and mailing, Office Depot paid nearly $84,000 in use tax in Missouri over a two-year period. In January 2012, Office Depot requested a refund of the full amount. The director of revenue denied the request, and Office Depot filed a petition in the administrative hearing commission, which found the company was entitled to a full refund. The director seeks this Court’s review.

This case presents one primary issue for the Court – whether Office Depot exercised a “right or power of ownership or control” in Missouri over the paper and printed product by controlling delivery of the printed product to Missouri customers so as to fall within the tax statute’s definition of “use.” Related to this issue is how this Court should reconcile two of its prior decisions. If use tax can be imposed here, a final related question is how it should be calculated.

SC95029_Director_of_Revenue_brief.pdfSC95029_Director_of_Revenue_brief.pdfSC95029_Office_Depot_brief.pdfSC95029_Office_Depot_brief.pdf


SC94999
IBM Corporation v. Director of Revenue
Cole County
Whether credit card company’s activities qualify for use tax exemption
Listen to the oral argument: SC94999.mp3SC94999.mp3
The director was represented during arguments by Deputy Solicitor General Jeremiah J. Morgan of the attorney general’s office in Jefferson City; IBM was represented by Booker T. Shaw of Thompson Coburn LLP in St. Louis.

IBM Corporation sold computer-related hardware to MasterCard International LLC, which paid use taxes in Missouri on those purchases. MasterCard uses the hardware in financial transactions – involving authorization, clearing and settlement – and other services such as determining fraud, standing in for cardholder banks or warehousing transaction data. IBM filed a use tax return on behalf of MasterCard seeking a refund of use taxes. Ultimately, the administrative hearing commission determined MasterCard’s purchases were exempt from use tax and granted a refund. This appeal challenges that decision.

This case presents a primary issue for the Court relating to whether MasterCard and its activities can constitute “manufacturing” of a product so as to fit within the statutory exemption from use tax. Involved in this issue are questions of whether MasterCard’s activities of communicating financial transactions or its other services fit under a strict construction of the exemption or whether the use tax exemption applies only to manufacturing and other industrial-type activities. Related is whether, under this Court’s prior decisions interpreting the exemption, organizing or manipulating data to produce a new intangible product can constitute “manufacturing.”

SC94999_Director_of_Revenue_first_brief.pdfSC94999_Director_of_Revenue_first_brief.pdfSC94999_IBM_first_brief.pdfSC94999_IBM_first_brief.pdfSC94999_Director_of_Revenue_second_brief.pdfSC94999_Director_of_Revenue_second_brief.pdf



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