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BMV reduces license costs that generated class-action suit

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Indiana driver’s licenses will be $3.50 less expensive, the Bureau of Motor Vehicles announced Friday in a change taking immediate effect.

“We became aware of the possibility that the BMV could be overcharging Indiana drivers for an operator’s license, and reviewed existing law to determine the exact breakdown of fees that make up the cost of an operator’s license,” BMV Commissioner Scott Waddell said in a statement. “We discovered a miscalculation resulting in a $3.50 discrepancy for the six, five and four year standard operator’s licenses.

“As a result, the charge for a standard six-year operator’s license should be $17.50 instead of $21.00, a standard five-year license should be $16.00 instead of $19.50 and a four-year license should be $14.50 instead of $18.00,” Waddell said.

BMV previously acknowledged it “may have inadvertently overcharged” motorists in response to a multi-million-dollar class-action lawsuit  brought by Indianapolis class counsel Cohen & Malad LLP.

That suit represents Hoosiers who paid a fee to obtain or renew an operator’s license after March 7, 2007, and claims drivers under age 75 may have been overcharged by as much as $7 per license. The case before Marion Superior Judge Heather Welch is Tammy Raab, on behalf of herself and all others similarly situated v. R. Scott Waddell, in his official capacity as commissioner of the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles, and the Indiana BMV, 49D12-1303-PL-8769.

Welch on Friday appointed Faegre Baker Daniels LLP partner Jon Laramore to mediate. A jury trial is scheduled for Oct. 21.

Meanwhile, Cohen & Malad managing partner Irwin Levin said in a statement that mediation was taking place today. "We're always happy when our lawsuit motivates the state to follow the law. We wish they had reduced the fee more to comply with the law.” He said the firm hopes “that the BMV will agree to give back the tens of millions of dollars they have illegally charged.”

 

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  • Thank You
    Thank you Irwin Levin for a job well done. Now, i want my money the License Bureau took from me. I cannot believe a mistake like that was overlooked or did someone just look away?????? Im forced to pay for my mistakes....companies etc. should pay for their mistakes as well. Waiting on my check

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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?

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  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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