Christopher Pooser

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Christopher Pooser represents clients before federal and state appellate courts, including the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and the Idaho Supreme Court. His appellate practice focuses on helping clients assess their tolerance for risk on appeal and ultimately positioning them for success on appeal. He also works with trial attorneys to ensure the facts and legal issues are carefully developed and presented and a complete trial record is preserved for appeal.

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Idaho Supreme Court Update: Originalism in Idaho

On January 5, 2023, the Idaho Supreme Court issued its opinion in Planned Parenthood Great Northwest, Hawaii, Alaska, Indiana, Kentucky v. State of Idaho. In a 3-2 decision, the Court upheld three Idaho laws severely restricting access to abortion. The justices covered a lot of ground in a majority opinion and two dissents spanning 139 … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Update: Latvala v. Green Enterprises, Inc.

The facts. This case was previously before the Idaho Supreme Court in Latvala v. Green Enterprises, Inc., 168 Idaho 686, 485 P.3d 1129 (2021) (Latvala I). It concerns the scope of a prescriptive easement over a road to reach a land-locked parcel of land. The parcel was originally part of a patented mining claim, and … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Update: The Importance of Local Counsel

On December 7, 2022, the Idaho Supreme Court issued an opinion in Schiermeier v. State of Idaho. This post will focus not on the merits of that decision, but on the Court’s “necessary discussion regarding the conduct of counsel.” In Idaho, out-of-state attorneys may practice law only if they associate with local counsel and apply … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Update: Blaskiewicz v. Spine Institute of Idaho, P.A.

The facts. Donald Blaskiewicz, M.D., a highly trained neurosurgeon, was employed by the Spine Institute of Idaho, P.A. (“Spine Institute”) pursuant to a Professional Services Agreement (“PSA”). The PSA contained a non-compete clause that prohibited him from practicing medicine within 50 miles of the Spine Institute’s office for 18 months. Pursuant to the PSA, Blaskiewicz … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Update: Grace at Twin Falls, LLC v. Jeppesen

The facts. An assisted living facility partnered with a preferred pharmacy to offset software costs related to the tracking and delivery of residents’ prescription medications. The facility charged residents an extra $10 each month if they did not choose the preferred pharmacy. The lower court held that the arrangement violated the Idaho Residential Care or … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Update: Sheehan v. Sun Valley Company

The facts. The Idaho Department of Labor found that Nathaniel Sheehan was ineligible for unemployment insurance benefits and ordered him to repay benefits that he had received. During Sheehan’s initial protest, the Department advised Sheehan that it would email updates to him, but the Department instead mailed a notice of telephonic hearing to Sheehan’s P.O. … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Update: Gray v. Gray

The facts. Mom and Dad were married, had a child, and divorced. As part of the divorce, the parties reached a visitation arrangement that gave Mom primary custody of the child and Dad visitation. Mom later relocated to Costa Rica with the child. Mom made the decision to relocate unilaterally, without informing Dad and without … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Update: Carver v. Hornish

The facts. A father allegedly consented to a sham marriage for his minor daughter to evade the magistrate court’s jurisdiction over a custody dispute with his ex-wife. The mother requested expedited relief to stop the sham marriage, but the magistrate court did not enter an order stopping the father from consenting to the marriage until … Continue Reading

Reminder: Amendments to the Idaho Appellate Rules and Idaho Rules of Civil Procedure go into effect July 1, 2017

In May, we wrote about amendments to the Idaho Appellate Rules that go into effect July 1, 2017. You can link to the blog post here. The changes impact I.A.R. 11.1, 12.1, 12.2, 25, 27(f), 28(g), 32(b), 33, 34(a), 34.1, and 40. Key amendments address the submission of electronic briefs (they are now mandatory), the … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Addresses Issues of First Impression

This Spring, the Idaho Supreme Court issued several opinions addressing issues of first impression. Below are the highlights from one of these opinions, Westover v. Cundick. We’ll discuss the other cases that have addressed new issues in the coming weeks. In Westover v. Cundick, 2017 Opinion 33 (Apr. 14, 2017) (slip op.), the Supreme Court … Continue Reading

Amendments to the Idaho Appellate Rules address electronic briefs, standard transcripts in criminal appeals, and appealable judgments from the magistrate courts

The Idaho Supreme Court recently announced amendments to Idaho Appellate Rules 11.1, 12.1, 12.2, 25, 27(f), 28(g), 32(b), 33, 34(a), 34.1, and 40. The changes go into effect July 1, 2017. Attorneys handling appeals before the Supreme Court should note that the submission of electronic briefs will be mandatory. Criminal appellate attorneys will want to … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court amends Idaho Rule of Civil Procedure 54 to address changes to Idaho Code § 12-121

In response to the Idaho Supreme Court’s controversial decision in Hoffer v. Shappard, 160 Idaho 868, 380 P.3d 681 (2016), the Idaho legislature amended Idaho Code § 12-121 (effective March 1, 2017). The statute now reads: In any civil action, the judge may award reasonable attorney’s fees to the prevailing party or parties when the … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court Justice candidates are announced

Today the Idaho Judicial Council announced 15 candidates for the position of Idaho Supreme Court Justice. The position was created with the retirement of Justice Daniel Eismann. The candidates include one Idaho Court of Appeals judge, six district court judges, and eight practicing lawyers. They are: BEVAN, G. RICHARD, is a District Judge of the … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court announces significant change to standard for attorney fees under Idaho Code § 12-121

The Idaho Supreme Court announced a new standard for an award of attorney fees under Idaho Code § 12-121. See Hoffer v. Shappard, 2016 Opinion No. 105 (Idaho Sept. 28, 2016). Section 12-121 reads: “In any civil action, the judge may award reasonable attorney’s fees to the prevailing party or parties, provided that this section … Continue Reading

The Idaho Supreme Court proposes amendments to Idaho Appellate Rule 5, Special Writs and Proceedings

Idaho Appellate Rule 5 sets forth procedures for special writs and other proceedings over which the Idaho Supreme Court has original jurisdiction. The Court recently proposed adding five new subsections to the rule.  The amendments address the form of the Court’s denial of a petition for a writ of mandamus or prohibition or issuance of … Continue Reading

Notes from ‘An Appellate Practice CLE’ – Part 2: motions for an extension of time, motions for an overlength brief, avoiding delays in appeals, cross-appeals, and more

In a post earlier this week, I relayed notes and practice pointers on Idaho appellate practice gathered from An Appellate Practice CLE, held on October 9, 2015. Here are some additional notes from the CLE: First motions for an extension of time to file a brief are granted 99.99% of the time. Typically, extensions are … Continue Reading

An award of attorney fees under Idaho Code § 12-120(3) may be proper in an action for declaratory or injunctive relief

Must a party seek to “recover” on a commercial transaction before attorney fees are allowed under Idaho Code § 12-120(3)? Stated differently, does an action for declaratory or injunctive relief preclude attorney fees under the statute? The Idaho Supreme Court addressed those questions in Idaho Transportation Department v. Ascorp, Inc., 2015 Opinion No. 94 (Sept. … Continue Reading

The Idaho Supreme Court and Court of Appeals announce oral argument calendars for October and November

The Idaho Supreme Court and Court of Appeals announced their oral argument calendars for the 2015 Fall Term. Official notice was published in the October edition of The Advocate. Case summaries can be found here for the Idaho Supreme Court and here for the Idaho Court of Appeals. Idaho Supreme Court Oral Argument Calendar October There … Continue Reading

Notes from An ‘Appellate Practice CLE’ – Part 1: electronic filing, average times for disposition of civil appeals, amended judgments, and more

On October 9, 2015, the Idaho Appellate Practice Section (IAPS) and the University of Idaho College of Law hosted An Appellate Practice CLE in Boise, Idaho. Steve Kenyon, the Clerk of the Idaho Supreme Court and Court of Appeals, spoke on a variety of matters concerning appeals before Idaho’s highest courts. Here are some updates, … Continue Reading

Idaho Supreme Court reiterates that circumstantial evidence can create a genuine issue of material fact on summary judgment

In Krinitt v. Idaho Department of Fish and Game, 2015 Opinion No. 89 (Sept. 25, 2015), the Idaho Supreme Court reversed a district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of a defendant. The decision is a good illustration of the relevance of circumstantial evidence on summary judgment and a basic summary judgment standard: all … Continue Reading

Idaho Appellate Practice Section releases Idaho Appellate Handbook

On October 9, 2015, the Idaho Appellate Practice Section released the fourth edition of the Idaho Appellate Handbook. The Handbook contains 14 chapters focused on Idaho appellate practice. It is provided as a searchable PDF with hyperlinks to statute, rule, and case law citations. The Handbook’s chapters are: CHAPTER I         Introduction to the Idaho Appellate … Continue Reading
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