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Attorney general wants State Fair class action dismissed

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The Office of the Indiana Attorney General filed a motion Monday in Marion Superior Court to dismiss a proposed class-action lawsuit filed as a result of the stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair.

Attorney General Greg Zoeller said the move is not a reflection on the plaintiff’s claim, but that the attorneys on the case didn’t follow proper procedure as outlined under Indiana Code 34-13-3-1, the Indiana Tort Claims Act. Indianapolis firm Cohen & Malad filed its suit Aug. 22 on behalf of Angela Fischer, who attended the Sugarland concert at the fair and suffers from emotional trauma from the event, and those similarly situated.

The suit was filed the same day Cohen & Malad filed the tort claim with the Office of the Indiana Attorney General. The Tort Claims Act requires a tort claim notice to be filed first, with the state having 90 days to review it and decide whether to approve or deny it before the party can file a suit against the state.

“There are deadlines and a process that must be followed under Indiana law,” Zoeller said in a statement. “We can’t have one claimant try to cut in line when other claimants are following the rules.”

As of Monday, the AG’s office has received tort claims from six people concerning the stage collapse, five of which followed the proper procedures. The state is still reviewing the tort claims, including the one Fischer filed.
 

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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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