When a city, county, or other unit of local government is sued for negligence or other torts, it’s common practice for the unit’s attorney to file a motion asking the trial court to dismiss the lawsuit based on the defense of governmental immunity. (See blog posts available here and here for an explanation of governmental immunity fundamentals.) Many local government attorneys believe that, if the trial court denies such a motion, the unit always has the right to an immediate appeal. As a recent decision by the North Carolina Court of Appeals reminds us, however, whether the unit may immediately appeal can depend on how the immunity defense is framed in the motion. This blog post aims toContinue Reading
Under G.S. 7B-1703(b), a juvenile court counselor (JCC) has “15 days after the complaint is received” to file the complaint as a juvenile petition, or a maximum of 30 days, if the chief court counselor has granted a 15-day extension. I’m often asked whether an untimely filed petition must be dismissed; and if so, whether the State is precluded from filing another petition for the same offense. There are two published appellate cases addressing these issues; In re D.S., 364 N.C. 184 (2010), and In re J.A.G., 206 N.C. App. 318 (2010). Here’s what they say.