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Christiansen v. NDDOT

Docket No. 20210218
Oral Argument: Tuesday, November 30, 2021 9:00 AM

Docket Info

Title
Kendra M. Christiansen, Appellant
v.
William T. Panos, Director,
Department of Transportation, Appellee
Case Type
CIVIL APPEAL : TRANSPORTATION DEPT.
Appeal From
Case No. 2021-CV-01432
East Central Judicial District, Cass County
Wade L. Webb
Oral Argument 11/30/2021

Parties' Statement of Issues

  • Appellant

    1. Statute directs law enforcement shall forward a certified written report to the Department within five days. The Department erred by suspending Ms. Christiansen’s driving privileges when the certified written report was forwarded after nine days.
    2. Statute requires the Department must specify issues to be determined at an administrative hearing. The Department erred by suspending Ms. Christiansen’s driving privileges based wholly on an issue not specified.
    3. Statute requires the Department to pay a motorist’s costs and attorneys’ fees when the Department acts without substantial justification. The Department lacked substantial justification, requiring an award of costs and attorneys’ fees.

  • Appellee 1

    1. Whether law enforcement’s failure to forward the Report and Notice to the Department within five days after issuance of the temporary operator’s
    permit to Christiansen deprives the Department of jurisdiction, where Christiansen timely requested a hearing, and the hearing was held within
    thirty days after the issuance of the temporary operator’s permit to her.
    2. Whether Christiansen is entitled to an award of attorney fees and costs under N.D.C.C. § 28-32-50(1).


Summary

In March 2021, Kendra M. Christiansen was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. Law enforcement issued a report and notice, which included a temporary operator’s permit. However, law enforcement did not forward the report to the Department of Transportation within five days as required by statute.

Christiansen requested an administrative hearing. Prior to the hearing, the Department specified issues to be decided but did not include the failure to forward the report within five days.

At the administrative hearing, Christiansen argued the case should be dismissed. The Department suspended Christiansen’s driver’s license for 91 days, finding the five-day requirement was not jurisdictional and Christiansen failed to show she suffered prejudice resulting from the delay.

Christiansen appealed to district court, and the Department’s decision was affirmed. On appeal, Christiansen argues failure to forward the report within five days requires reversal of her case, the Department erred by suspending her driving privileges based on an issue not specified prior to the hearing, and statute requires the Department to pay costs and attorney’s fees.


Briefs

Filing Date Description
09/08/2021 APPELLANT BRIEF View
10/07/2021 APPELLEE BRIEF View

Counsel

Party Type Name
APPELLANT PRIVATE PRACTICE Mark Allan Friese - 05646
APPELLEE ATT. GENERAL OFFICE Michael Trent Pitcher - 06369
APPELLANT PRIVATE PRACTICE Danny Lee Herbel - 05769
APPELLANT PRIVATE PRACTICE Drew James Hushka - 08230

(Note: Attachments may not be available for recently filed cases and/or confidential documents.)

Seq. # Filing Date Description Attachment
1 08/02/2021 NOTICE OF APPEAL : 08/02/2021
2 08/04/2021 Rec'd $125 Filing Fee
3 08/05/2021 NOT. OF FILING NOT. OF APPEAL AND PROOF OF SERV.
4 08/05/2021 Notice served on Mark A. Friese, Danny L. Herbel & Michael T. Pitcher
5 08/05/2021 ADMINISTRATIVE HEARING TRANSCRIPT DATED APRIL 26, 2021
6 09/02/2021 ELEC. RECORD ON APPEAL DATED SEPTEMBER 1, 2021 (ENTRY NOS.1-25 AND 27-55) REC'D VIA
7 09/02/2021 U.S. MAIL ENTRY NO. 26 (EXHIBIT 17 - DVD)
8 09/08/2021 APPELLANT BRIEF View
9 09/08/2021 Oral Argument Request by Appellant
10 09/08/2021 APPELLANT APPENDIX
11 09/09/2021 Rec'd correction to ATA (notice of appeal & specification of error) & proof of service
12 09/13/2021 Rec'd copies of ATB & ATA from Central Duplicating
13 10/07/2021 APPELLEE BRIEF View
14 10/07/2021 Oral Argument Request by Appellee
15 10/11/2021 Rec'd copies of AEB from Central Duplicating
16 10/19/2021 NOTICE OF ORAL ARGUMENT SENT
17 11/30/2021 APPEARANCES: Mark A. Friese/Michael T. Pitcher
18 11/30/2021 ARGUED: Mark A. Friese/Michael T. Pitcher
19 11/30/2021 ORAL ARGUMENT WEBCAST