Highlights from Current Issue
• Supreme Court grants mandamus relief and holds that trial court could not retroactively apply a statement of financial hardship so that plaintiff’s wrongful death action
would be timely filed.
• Court of Civil Appeals holds that underinsured motorist carrier was required to pay pro rata share of attorney fees under common fund doctrine.
• Court of Civil Appeals reverses trial court’s award of attorney fees in breach of contract action where no evidence was presented regarding amount of those fees.
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Alabama lawmakers finish session under new pay structure
Alabama lawmakers have finished their first legislative session under a new pay structure that gives them a salary equal to the median household income in the state. Voters approved the change in 2012 following backlash over a lawmakers' giving themselves a hefty pay raise in 2007 and predictions that it would be a significant pay cut for lawmakers.
District Judge Scott Taylor appointed as new Baldwin County Circuit Judge
Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley appointed District Court Judge Scott Taylor to a circuit court vacancy effective June 22, leaving another judicial vacancy in Baldwin County. Taylor will move from the district seat to a circuit judgeship that became open after longtime Judge Robert Wilters announced his retirement effective this month.
Mobile attorney to lead Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission
Mobile attorney Billy C. Bedsole is the new chair of the Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission. The commission enforces the ethical rules that govern the Alabama's state judges. Its jurisdiction includes consideration of sworn complaints concerning any state judge's alleged violation of the ethical rules, misconduct in office, failure to perform judicial duties, or inability to perform judicial duties because of a physical or mental disability.
Congress can fix Affordable Care Act if Supreme Court rules against it, president says
With the Supreme Court set to rule on a key provision of the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama told reporters Monday that the court should never have agreed to hear the case.
Alabama has plenty of company when it comes to budget shortfalls
The Alabama Legislature has plenty of company in its struggles to pass a budget. The New York Times reported that many states face funding shortages and standoffs between lawmakers and governors over how to resolve them.
Trade bill 2015: Sewell seeks protections for Alabama's steel industry
U.S. Rep Terri Sewell, D-Birmingham, wrote a letter to House leaders on Tuesday urging them to adopt stronger protections for the steel industry as the House is expected to consider trade legislation impacting a proposed trade deal between the U.S. and 11 other Pacific Rim nations later this week. The congresswoman said the protections are contingent on whether she will vote in favor of the potential agreement and related legislation that gives the president fast-track authority to approve trade deals. The Senate passed the fast-track legislation late last month, which included language on currency manipulation and dumping sought by Sewell.
Expanding gambling in Alabama would be harder during special session
Gov. Robert Bentley says he will not include gambling in his call for a special session, a decision that will make it harder for any such proposals to pass. Under the state Constitution, legislation about any subject not included in the governor's special session resolution requires a vote of two-thirds of the members of the House of Representatives and the Senate to pass.
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To learn details about some of the more notable decisions of 2008