Justia Class Action Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in Supreme Court of Indiana
Land v. IU Credit Union
The Indiana Supreme Court heard a case involving a dispute between Tonia Land and the IU Credit Union (IUCU). When Land became a customer at the credit union, she was given an account agreement that could be modified at any time. Later, when she registered for online banking, she accepted another agreement that allowed the IUCU to modify the terms and conditions of the services. In 2019, the IUCU proposed changes to these agreements, which would require disputes to be resolved through arbitration and prevent Land from initiating or participating in a class-action lawsuit. Land did not opt out of these changes within thirty days as required, which, according to the IUCU, made the terms binding. However, Land later filed a class-action lawsuit against the credit union, which attempted to compel arbitration based on the addendum.The court held that while the IUCU did provide Land with reasonable notice of its offer to amend the original agreements, Land's subsequent silence and inaction did not result in her assent to that offer, according to Section 69 of the Restatement (Second) of Contracts. The credit union petitioned for rehearing, claiming that the court failed to address certain legal authorities and arguments raised on appeal and in the transfer proceedings.Upon rehearing, the court affirmed its original decision, rejecting the credit union's arguments. However, the court also expressed a willingness to consider a different standard governing the offer and acceptance of unilateral contracts between businesses and consumers in future cases. The court found no merit in the credit union's arguments on rehearing and affirmed its original opinion in full. View "Land v. IU Credit Union" on Justia Law
Hoosier Contractors, LLC v. Gardner
The Supreme Court affirmed in part and reversed in part the judgment of the trial court denying Hoosier Contractors, LLC's motion for summary judgment, denying Sean Gardner's motion for partial summary judgment, and denying Hoosier's motion to decertify a class of Hoosier's similarly situated customers, holding that Gardner, on behalf of himself and as class representative, lacked standing to bring his counterclaim against Hoosier.When Gardner asked Hoosier to inspect the roof of his home Hoosier made Gardner sign a contract for Hoosier to perform any needed work. When Gardner refused to let Hoosier repair his roof Hoosier brought this action for breach of contract. Gardner filed a counterclaim, on behalf of himself and a class of similarly situated customers, alleging that the contract violated the Indiana Home Improvement Contractors Act and that the violations were deceptive acts under the Indiana Deceptive Consumer Sales Act. The Supreme Court held (1) Gardner lacked standing to bring his counterclaim against Hoosier, and this disposition mooted the class-action issues; and (2) the court of appeals properly affirmed the denial of Gardner's motion for partial summary judgment as to Hoosier's breach of contract claim. View "Hoosier Contractors, LLC v. Gardner" on Justia Law
Decker v. Star Financial Group Inc.
The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the trial court granting a motion to compel arbitration brought by Defendant Star Financial Group, Inc. in this class-action complaint alleging that Defendant collected improper overdraft fees, holding that Plaintiffs' account agreement did not allow Defendant to add an addendum to the terms and conditions of the account agreement.When Plaintiffs opened their checking account they assented to an account agreement detailing the terms and conditions of their relationship with Defendant. Before Plaintiffs brought this suit Defendant added an arbitration and no-class-action addendum to the terms and conditions of Plaintiffs' account agreement. When Plaintiffs filed this lawsuit Defendants cited the addendum and filed a motion to compel arbitration. The trial court granted the motion. The Supreme Court reversed, holding that Plaintiffs were not bound by the arbitration addendum to their account agreement because the account agreement's change-of-terms provision did not allow Plaintiff to add the addendum. View "Decker v. Star Financial Group Inc." on Justia Law