August 23, 2019

Archives for June 20, 2013

Tenth Circuit: Summary Judgment for Defendants Affirmed in Removal From Mediator Appointment Roster Case

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals published its opinion in Lopez v. Admin. Office of Courts on Wednesday, June 19, 2013.

Plaintiff-Appellant George Lopez conducts mediations in a program created and managed by the Administrative Office of Courts of the State of Utah (the AO). In 2006 he was removed from the panel of mediators that the AO had created under statutory authority to mediate certain domestic matters. Lopez brought suit in federal district court alleging that his removal from that list of specialized mediators violated his right to due process and his right to equal protection of the laws in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 1983. Mr. Lopez also alleged breach of contract, breach of implied contract, and breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing. The district court granted summary judgment for the defendants.

Lopez first argued that the district court erred in holding that there was no implied contract between him and the AO. The court disagreed because the Best Practices Manual was not sufficient to show mutual assent to make a bargain with certain terms. Even if the court were to find an implied contract, it could find no breach, given the broad discretion the AO had to terminate the arrangement.

The Tenth Circuit also rejected Lopez’s due process claim. Lopez had no property interest based on contract in remaining on the domestic matters mediator roster because there was no implied contract. Because of the discretion of the AO, he could not claim any entitlement to remaining on the roster and thus has no property interest on that basis. The court affirmed summary judgment.

Tenth Circuit: Unpublished Opinions, 6/19/13

On Wednesday, June 19, 2013, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued one published opinion and two unpublished opinions.

United States v. Garcia-Rodriguez

United States v. Johnson

No case summaries are provided for unpublished opinions. However, published opinions are summarized and provided by Legal Connection.