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City of Kansas City v. Cosic -- courts may not take judicial notice of a city ordinance

Citing to other recent authority, the opinion notes that the contents of a municipal ordinance "must be proven like every other fact."  City of Kansas City v. Powell, 451 S.W.ed 724, 740 n.15 (Mo. App. W.D. 2014).  Further, the mere inclusion of documents in an appendix to a brief does not make them part of the record on appeal.

Court Summary:

The City of Kansas City appeals from the trial court's judgment awarding the City unpaid earnings taxes and other costs, but failing to award prejudgment interest. The City argues that the trial court erred in failing to award prejudgment interest because a city ordinance mandates the imposition of interest.


Division Four holds: The City's point on appeal depends for its success on a city ordinance. Courts may not take judicial notice of the contents of a city ordinance. The record does not establish that the ordinance was introduced into evidence at trial, and the ordinance is not part of the record on appeal. Because the record does not contain the evidence necessary to determine the City's point on appeal, the City's appeal is dismissed.

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About this Author

Laura A. Bentele, Litigation Attorney, Armstrong Teasdale, Law firm

Laura Bentele is an associate attorney in the Litigation group practicing in the areas of complex commercial litigation and white collar criminal defense. To achieve optimal outcomes, Laura anticipates clients’ strategic and practical business considerations. Committed to effective case management, she is versed in all phases of discovery, trial preparation and negotiation of settlements with opposing counsel. Laura strives to maintain open avenues of communication to ensure that clients receive representation that meets their business needs.