Recent Blog Posts

Marketing cuts “dumb”

December 8, 2008
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Here’s a little more on the topic of law firm marketing cuts. Reporter Michael Hoskins spoke to an expert at Altman Weil, a legal consulting firm, last week for a story on a different topic and the two also briefly discussed...
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Firm mergers & the economy

December 4, 2008
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Looks like Locke Reynolds answered the question I posed in a blog from October. Locke confirmed they are merging with Louisville-Cincinnati firm Frost Brown Todd and taking that firm’s name. This is the second merger a large Indianapolis firm has undertaken...
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Marketing cuts: good or bad?

December 3, 2008
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How essential are law firm marketing departments? I guess it depends who you ask. That department is taking a hit because of the economy, according to a recent article in The National Law Journal . Law firms that are struggling to...
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Direct mail restrictions

December 1, 2008
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Have you ever been in an accident and then received mail from an attorney only days later? If you have, did you find the mailing helpful or annoying? That’s what the Indiana State Bar Association wants to find out from residents...
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From spouse to roommate

November 26, 2008
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When times get tough economically, people don’t divorce. At least, that’s what the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers are saying. The group sent out a press release recently that said divorce rates are more likely to fall rather than rise when...
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SCOTUS book worth a read?

November 24, 2008
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From  IL reporter Michael Hoskins:   As you might expect, we like to read and write here at Indiana Lawyer. Perusing lawsuits, caselaw, court opinions, and legal news in general is all part of the job reporting on the Hoosier legal...
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God and the BMV

November 21, 2008
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Who would have thought God would be such an issue at the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles? The religious deity and the use of the word “God” continue to prompt Indiana residents to file suits – one challenging the lack of...
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Statehouse prayer sequel?

November 19, 2008
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UPDATE Nov. 20: The ACLU of Indiana’s Ken Falk said today that the rumblings about Statehouse prayer he’s hearing are disconcerting and that the legislators’ actions will warrant a watchful eye. He didn’t say it, but another legal battle regarding prayer...
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Lawyers and the Big 3

November 17, 2008
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There’s been a lot of talk lately in the news about the Big Three automakers – Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors – and how the companies are struggling in the current economy. The automakers are turning to Congress for possibly $25...
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1 million ‘yes’ votes

November 12, 2008
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The Indiana Supreme Court announced today that more than one million people voted to retain the three justices up for retention this year. That’s the first time that many people have voted “yes” to keep a justice in office. I wonder...
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SCOTUS hears testimonial case

November 10, 2008
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The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments today involving an issue that is currently before our state’s high court: whether lab reports are considered testimonial evidence. SCOTUS heard arguments in Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts , about whether a state forensic analyst’s laboratory’s report...
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Should judge be removed?

November 7, 2008
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The masters presiding over the case of Marion Superior Judge Grant Hawkins released their report today recommending to the Indiana Supreme Court that he be removed from the bench. Hawkins was charged by the Indiana Judicial Qualifications Commission with 11 counts...
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Talk of reform and recusal

November 5, 2008
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From IL reporter Michael Hoskins: Indiana Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard took some time Wednesday following Election Day to talk with about 60 people about local government reform. He spoke at the North United Methodist Church in Indianapolis about his work...
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No alcohol until 6 p.m.

November 4, 2008
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I expected a long wait to vote at my precinct today. I brought my iPod, wore comfortable shoes, and prepared to wait in line for an hour or more. When at 7 a.m. I pulled up to the church where I...
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Pre-election appeals

November 3, 2008
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From IL reporter Michael Hoskins: Election Day is less than 24 hours away, but that isn’t stopping the litigation and court filings. An emergency appeal is happening with the Indianapolis ruling that came from Marion Circuit Judge Ted Sosin late Friday,...
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Misconduct complaint on AG ad

October 31, 2008
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With all the political ads showing on TV right now, it’s easy for us to tune them out. But one recent ad from the camp of Republican candidate for Attorney General Greg Zoeller has upset one Indianapolis criminal defense attorney so...
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What about the votes?

October 30, 2008
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The Indiana Court of Appeals is hearing arguments today in the Lake County early-voting satellite locations case, and as of this blog posting, hasn’t ruled on the issue. It’s up in the air right now how the court may rule, but...
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Where else is the fraud?

October 28, 2008
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Why does it always have to be Lake County? It’s election time, so once again, there are allegations flying that shenanigans are going on in Northern Indiana. Voter fraud is a big deal. If it isn’t caught, it can damage and...
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Should all judges be lawyers?

October 27, 2008
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From IL reporter Michael Hoskins: If you’re responsible for applying the law, no matter if the case is a traffic infraction or a civil or criminal proceeding, is a law license required? The answer is no, but it’s a topic being...
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Judge attacks pro bono work

October 23, 2008
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Update: The Wall Street Journal Law Blog has an entry today with excerpts of the 2nd Circuit Chief Judge Dennis Jacobs' speech regarding pro bono work. The chief judge defends his speech, saying the National Law Journal article "grossly misstates" what the judge...
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Law school for free

October 22, 2008
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Want to go to law school for free? That’s the pitch one new California law school is using to attract students from competing schools. The University of California Irvine School of Law is planning to offer the students who enroll in...
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Be our friend!

October 20, 2008
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Indiana Lawyer has jumped into the online social-networking world and joined Facebook, and we are looking to make friends. Do you want to be our friend? We started IL ’s Facebook page as a place for attorneys and law students...
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Fraud claims don’t hold up

October 16, 2008
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There’s a fight going on in Indiana against early-voting sites, but the punches are being thrown at the wrong opponent. A few Republicans in the typically Democratic-leaning Lake County have challenged the use of satellite voting sites because they feared it...
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Could you pass the test?

October 14, 2008
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What does the U.S. Constitution do? Why do some states have more representatives than others? Under the U.S. Constitution, what is one power of the federal government? As a lawyer, you should be able to answer these questions pretty easily. But...
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TV, child care, and jurors

October 10, 2008
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Free child care. Free movies and wireless Internet. Time to shop during the day. These aren’t amenities law firms are giving employees to attract lawyers but are actually what some counties in the U.S. are doing to attract jurors. No one...
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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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