AG: State Fair stage collapse victim payments completed

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Victims of the 2011 Indiana State Fair stage collapse soon will receive a supplemental and final disbursement of money allocated for victims of the tragedy that killed seven people and injured scores more.

Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller announced Thursday that $6 million in state aid approved by the Legislature for victims of the disaster had been divided among 59 victims. They will receive money in wire transfers or in the mail in coming days.

The supplemental aid is in addition to $5 million distributed previously under the state’s limit for tort claims, bringing total state victim compensation to $11 million. The estates of the seven victims who died each received a total of $700,000. A flowchart of how compensation was divided is available here. 

The second round of compensation was overseen by an arbitration panel that paid all victim medical expenses through mid-November and made provision for those who are permanently paralyzed and those who will require long-term care. Victims may also seek damages from private defendants.

At a news conference Thursday, Zoeller praised the work of an arbitration panel and plaintiff attorneys who worked together to expedite compensation to victims. “Not only do we believe it was more fair in a lot of ways, but it was a much, much faster way to speed relief to the victims,” he said.

Indianapolis attorney William Baten chaired the arbitration panel that also included attorneys Denise Page of Indianapolis and Eugene Stewart of Brookville. It was a nonadversarial process in which Baten said the panel could make individual determinations based on information each victim’s attorney provided.

“We were able to have all the information we needed to make informed decisions,” Baten said. Reaching settlements moved at “light speed, compared to traditional litigation,” he said.

“It was appropriate that the Indiana legislators decided to provide additional financial assistance to victims of the State Fair tragedy in light of all that victims have endured,” Zoeller said in a news release. “Developing and implementing an equitable method for allocating the funds was a complicated process, but our objective that victims receive expedited funds without years of litigation was accomplished.”




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  1. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  4. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  5. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.