Legal Articles

Sub Silentio Opinions, Appeals

“Sub silentio” means “without notice being taken or without making a particular point of the matter in question.” Badahman v. Catering St. Louis, 395 S.W.3d 29, 49 fn 10 (Mo. 2013). This term is used to refer to the practice of appellate courts overturning cases without explicitly stating so. Although this is possible, it is…

Acquiescence & Claim-Splitting

Courts generally prohibit “claim-splitting.” Claim splitting occurs when a single cause of action is “split and filed or tried piecemeal.” G.B. v. Crossroads Acad.-Cent. St., 618 S.W.3d 581, 591 (Mo. Ct. App. 2020). When more than one lawsuit is filed, and the first results in a judgment, claims that could have been raised by the prevailing…

Prima Facie Tort

The “prima facie tort” claim is incredibly vague and confusing. It has four elements: (1) an intentional, lawful act by the defendant; (2) an intent to cause injury to the plaintiff; (3) injury to the plaintiff; and (4) absence of any justification or an insufficient justification for the defendant’s act. Porter v. Crawford & Co.,…

Proving Intent

It is difficult to prove intent, knowledge, and any other condition of mind. The reason is that litigants rarely admit to things. Likewise, direct evidence is often rare. In the context of a plaintiff pleading a lawsuit, “intent…and any other condition of mind may be averred generally.” Clark v. Olson, 726 S.W.2d 718, 719 (Mo….

Contract: Time for Performance

Written contracts often include precise language covering when certain acts must be done. For example, contracts often include provisions as to when payment should be made and when parties are obligated to perform their contractual duties. What happens when a contract is silent on timing? When a contract does not specify a time for performance,…

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