Recent Blog Posts

One bar’s rates going down

February 11, 2010
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The current economy can make businesses cut fees in hopes of attracting more customers or raise fees to cover increasing costs and hope it doesn’t drive people away. The American Bar Association took the first approach this week and voted to...
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Slavery case re-enacted

February 9, 2010
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Today's post is from IL reporter Rebecca Berfanger:   Braving the cold and snow, a group of about 15 eighth graders from Indianapolis Public School’s Cold Spring School 315 participated in a re-enactment of the trial of Polly Strong, a...
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Big game delays trial

February 4, 2010
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A judge in New Orleans has postponed a jury trial set to begin Monday because some prospective jurors, attorneys, and court personnel will be heading to Miami to watch the Saints lose in the Super Bowl. Judge Michael Bagneris said “The...
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Few women on the bench

February 3, 2010
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Women just barely outnumber men in the U.S., and nearly half of law school grads and firm associates are women, yet we still make up less than a third, and sometimes, less than a tenth of the judges in state or...
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Pants suit attorney back

February 1, 2010
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Roy Pearson Jr., famous for his $54 million suit over a lost pair of pants, has some issues and they aren’t just legal ones. He either craves attention, believes everyone is out to get him, or has issues with reality based...
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Calling out justices

January 28, 2010
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Anyone watching the State of Union Wednesday night catch the somewhat awkward moment between the president and the U.S. Supreme Court? Sitting front and center during the speech, the justices were called out for their ruling Jan. 21 that government can’t...
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Role playing, gang banging

January 28, 2010
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Typical gang activity: fighting opposing gang members, committing crime, and playing Dungeons and Dragons. Wait, what? The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals said so in an opinion it released this week in an inmate’s appeal after his D&D games were taken...
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Money for nothing?

January 25, 2010
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There’s an interesting case playing out in Kentucky involving a dispute over attorney’s fees. Two lawyers, who didn’t work on the bad-faith claim against a doctor’s insurer, argue they should get a cut of the fees because they originally signed up...
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Committee observations

January 21, 2010
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If I checked my Blackberry, read the news online, generally just didn’t pay attention, or even got up and left during a meeting, I think that would be rude behavior. But my behavior would be acceptable apparently as a member of...
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Firm recruiting changes

January 19, 2010
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If the National Association for Law Placement has its way, January and November are going to become very important months to many law students. NALP released a report this month detailing significant changes to the recruiting process. The biggest one: Goodbye...
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Banned from the library

January 14, 2010
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First they were prohibited from living too close to schools and then public park bans became the norm. Now, one legislator hopes to ban registered sex offenders from public libraries. If they show up there to check out a book or...
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Lobbyist, legislator reforms

January 11, 2010
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The General Assembly’s attempt to make changes to how lobbyists operate is moving through the legislature right now. HB 1001 puts more restrictions on who can register as lobbyists and when, as well as reduces the minimum reportable amount of money...
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Facebook fuels divorce

January 6, 2010
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Facebook is great for reconnecting with old classmates and friends. It’s also great at causing divorce. That great tool of reconnecting with former friends also lets people reconnect with former flames, leading to emotional, physical, or just cyber infidelity. According to...
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DNA bill targets relatives

January 4, 2010
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Relatives of someone who commits a crime may find themselves under investigation under a proposed bill to regarding DNA testing. Senate Bill 89 would amend Chapter 6 of Indiana Code 10-13 to add section 13.5, which authorizes the superintendent of a...
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Play like a justice

December 29, 2009
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There’s an opportunity to play a fantasy version online of nearly every sport. Sports nuts spend weeks researching players preparing for fantasy drafts, hoping to build a perfect fantasy team. But what about those people who may have an interest in...
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Electronic holiday cheer

December 24, 2009
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Instead of running to the mailbox to see if you’ve received a holiday card, try opening your inbox. Electronic holiday cards seem to be catching on with people, including professionals, as a way to send your holiday cheer without stamps. I...
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Senator wants no mandates

December 21, 2009
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Senate Joint Resolution 0002 is not likely to get the fanfare and attention that property tax caps, education, and health care will receive in the 2010 General Assembly, but if it eventually passes, it will have as much as an impact...
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Simpler seasonal celebrations

December 18, 2009
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‘Tis the season for holiday parties – so does that mean ‘tis now the season for scaling back? Blogs and news outlets across the country have stories about law firm holiday parties, and all have the common theme of the parties...
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Trends for 2010

December 15, 2009
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The employment outlook for paralegals looks up as legal secretaries have reason to be nervous, according to one legal staffing agency. Paralegals are in higher demand as more duties are assigned to them in the workplace. Robert Half Legal’s 2010 Salary...
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More frequent fitness exams?

December 10, 2009
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When you decided to become an attorney, one of the last steps you took was standing before the Board of Law Examiners Committee on Character and Fitness, which determined whether you should be admitted to the bar. Attorneys deemed to have...
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Swayed by repayment programs

December 7, 2009
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Last week, two large law schools announced updates to their loan forgiveness programs. The Berkley School of Law at the University of California and Georgetown University Law Center will now cover all law school loan debt for graduates who work...
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Hot dog leads to suit

December 4, 2009
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A woman slipped in a Connersville Speedway gas station, so of course, she’s filed a lawsuit. The gas station should have known better than to leave a hot dog on the floor. According to a lawsuit filed in Indianapolis this week...
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Rankings influence schools

December 3, 2009
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A new report says law schools are greatly influenced by the annual rankings released by U.S. News & World Report . I didn’t need a report to tell me that. What I did need the report to tell me was how...
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Billing rates going up

December 2, 2009
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Clients are going to have to pony up a little more cash next year for their lawyers. According to an Altman Weil survey on 2010 billing rates, only about 10 percent of firms surveyed plan to maintain their current billing rates...
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Flex-time push

November 30, 2009
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Is being a part-time attorney a dirty little secret? Some large companies believe so, and are working to change this mindset. According to an article in the National Law Journal , Del Monte Foods and several other companies are adding part-time...
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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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