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314.283.8930; henry@elsterlaw.com

Not Supported by Substantial Evidence, Against the Weight of the Evidence

When appealing a trial decided by a judge (as opposed to a jury), an appeals court will usually only reverse the trial judge’s judgement if there is no substantial evidence to support it, it is against the weight of the evidence, or it erroneously declares or applies the law. Murphy v. Carron, 536 S.W.2d 30, […]

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Appeals and Estoppel

Estoppel is a legal theory which generally prevent litigants from taking inconsistent positions in Court. Common forms of estoppel include equitable estoppel and promissory estoppel. However, estoppel can also be used to preclude a party’s ability to appeal a judgment. Steven Family Trust v. Huthsing, 81 S.W.2d 664, 667 (Mo. Ct. App. 2002). More specifically, […]

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Defending Motions for Civil Contempt, Appeals

For motions for contempt, the movant must prove that the (1) contemnor had an obligation to perform or refrain from an action as required by a court order and that (2) the contemnor intentionally/willfully failed to meet the court ordered obligation. Broadly speaking, someone can be held in either criminal contempt of court or civil […]

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Writs of Prohibition, Mandamus; Appeals

A writ is a form of extraordinary judicial relief in which a Court will make an order to prevent a specific abuse or harm. This usually come against public officials — even Judges. Two of the most common writs are Prohibition and Mandamus. Prohibition is available (1) to stop the use of judicial power when […]

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Law of the Case, Relitigation

Factual and legal findings of a trial court are hard to overturn. At the trial level re-litigation of pre-determined factual and legal issues is generally impermissible. See Shahan v. Shahan, 988 S.W.2d 529, 533 (Mo. 1999) (the “law of the case” doctrine governs successive adjudications involving the same issues and facts); Oldaker v. Peters, 869 S.W.2d […]

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Appealing Pendente Lite (PDL) Judgments in a Divorce

Judgments and orders Pendente Lite (“PDL”) in a divorce may order that one party is awarded attorney fees, child custody, child support, and/or spousal maintenance while the litigation is pending. Although a PDL action falls under scope of the overall divorce proceeding — and is made in anticipation of a final dissolution decree —  it is […]

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Unemployment Benefits: Rights, Objections, Appeals

Unemployment benefits — referred to statutorily as”employment security” — is in place to provide a safety net for persons unemployed through no fault of their own.  The law is in place to provide temporary funds to individuals whose jobs have been terminated for reasons outside of their control (e.g., the employer going out of business, […]

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