Lillian Parsley, as the Guardian, Grandparent, and Next Friend of Robert Parsley, Deceased, Appellant-Plaintiff,
MGA Family Group, Inc., H Properties LLP, Mark Snedeker, and Video Tech/Direct Maytag HAC, Appellees-Defendants.
from the Dubois Superior Court. The Honorable Mark R.
McConnell, Judge. Trial Court Cause No. 19D01-1610-CT-545
ATTORNEY FOR APPELLANT Timothy F. Devereux Ladendorf Law
ATTORNEYS FOR APPELLEES Thomas J. Jarzyniecki, Jr. Susan R.
Shan Kightlinger & Gray, LLP Indianapolis, Indiana
Crystal G. Rowe Kightlinger & Gray, LLP New Albany,
Indiana Attorneys for MGA Family Group, Inc, and H Properties
SHARPNACK, SENIOR JUDGE.
of the Case
After a fire took the lives of Lillian Parsley's daughter
and grandson, she sought wrongful death damages. She brings
this interlocutory appeal from the trial court's order
that granted MGA Family Group, Inc., H Properties LLP, and
Mark Snedeker's (collectively, "the
Defendants") motion to dismiss the wrongful death action
that Lillian initiated as to her grandson. We affirm.
The issue Lillian presents for our review (consolidated and
restated) is whether the trial court erred in granting the
Defendants' motion to dismiss her wrongful death action
as to her grandson.
and Procedural History
Linsey Parsley had given birth to her son, Robert, while she
was a sophomore in high school. On November 26, 2014, Linsey,
then twenty years old, and her three-year-old son Robert were
living in a Jasper, Indiana apartment with Alex Snedeker. On
that day, Linsey, Robert, and Alex died as the result of an
apartment fire. Following the deaths, Linsey's mother,
Lillian was appointed personal representative of Linsey's
On October 21, 2016, Lillian brought an action against the
Defendants to recover damages for Linsey's death, under
the Indiana Adult Wrongful Death Statute, and for
Robert's death under the Child Wrongful Death
Statute(CWDS). Lillian brought the wrongful death
claim as to Robert as his "Guardian, Grandparent and
Next Friend." Appellant's App. Vol. II, p. 17.
On December 14, 2016, the Defendants filed an Indiana Trial
Rule 12(B)(6) motion to dismiss, claiming Lillian's
complaint failed to state a claim upon which relief could be
granted. The motion alleged specifically that she lacked
standing to pursue a claim for Robert under the CWDS because
she was neither Robert's parent nor guardian at the time
of his death. Lillian filed a response that included
supplemental material. Following a hearing, the trial court
dismissed Lillian's wrongful death claim as to Robert.
Lillian filed a motion to reconsider, and the trial court
denied her motion. Upon Lillian's request, the trial
court certified the order for interlocutory appeal, and
Lillian then sought leave to pursue a discretionary
interlocutory appeal of the trial court's order. We
granted her motion, and this appeal ensued.
Initially, we must address MGA Family Group and H.
Properties' motion to strike portions of Lillian's
brief and appendix and portions of Appellee Mark
Snedeker's appendix. MGA Family Group and H. Properties
allege that the brief and appendices contain or refer to
materials that are not part of the record for the motion to
dismiss, i.e., an order from an unrelated case, pleadings
that pertain to a separate motion filed by MGA Family Group
and H. Properties for judgment on the pleadings, a Marion
County Superior Court decision from an unrelated case, a
deposition, "Pew Research" statistics, a lease