In This Issue

SEPT. 10-23, 2014
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Paul Overhauser’s clients are often on the cutting edge of Internet technology, so he decided that in addition to dollars, he’ll take digital dough. The intellectual property attorney has been accepting Bitcoin for several months. A key legislator in the Indiana General Assembly thinks Marion County small claims reform will face hurdles in the Legislature. Lawyers say that communication is key to long-term preservation of large estates. You don't want to fall victim to the "three generations rule" - that your fortune will only last three generations.

Top Stories

IP lawyer among first to accept Bitcoin for services

Intellectual property attorney Paul Overhauser’s clients are often on the cutting edge of Internet technology, so he decided that in addition to dollars, he’ll take digital dough.

7th Circuit: Marriage law is unconstitutional

Indiana’s assertion that preventing same-sex marriage encourages responsible procreation among heterosexuals was unequivocally rejected Sept. 4 in a blistering opinion from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, which said the state’s argument could not be taken seriously.

Economic harm is key part of gay marriage argument

When the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals on Sept. 4 affirmed Indiana’s marriage law was unconstitutional, Judge Richard Posner’s opinion gave special nod to the economic harm married same-sex couples suffer by not receiving the tangible state and federal benefits that are extended to married opposite-sex couples.

Marion County small claims reform faces hurdles in Legislature

The Indiana Supreme Court’s recommendation to merge Marion County’s nine township small claims courts with Marion Superior Court may be too bold for the Indiana General Assembly, a key senator said.

Law firms find rewards in staging events just for kicks

Sometimes lawyers just want to have fun. For numerous firms large and small, it’s good practice to stake out events that offer an opportunity to socialize, cut loose and have a good time.

Legal aid benefits from settlement

A financial boost for legal aid is expected to come from one of the banks that contributed to the 2008 economic collapse. The money will bring much-needed funding to the state’s pro bono districts which have been crippled by dwindling revenues and growing client lists. While the money will help, some say it should have come sooner.

New program gives attorneys an 'Intro to Indy'

The Indianapolis Bar Association's "Intro to Indy" program will introduce attorneys to nonprofit agencies and give them leads on becoming more engaged in the community.


Lawyers say communication is key to long-term preservation of large estates

A fortunate few wealthy families are able to preserve their estates for more than a couple of generations, but attorneys say communication can improve the odds that a grantor’s grandchildren will have something left to pass on.

Alerding/Latterell: A 2014 view of portability

Gift and estate tax planning has gotten easier for married couples thanks in part to a relatively new concept: porting of the federal gift and estate tax exemption to a surviving spouse.

Thomas: When drafting a will, be as specific as possible

To ensure that your client’s property will go to the beneficiaries of his or her choosing, as opposed to the beneficiaries that the state chooses, it is imperative that the last will and testament be very specific and provide for as many contingencies as possible.


Dean's Desk: Distance learning comes of age at NDLS

Thanks to distance-learning technology, professors as well as students have much more flexibility than previous generations did. Today a professor might teach in Chicago one week and in South Bend the next.

Hammerle On… 'Land Ho!' 'Sin City: A Dame to Kill For,' 'The Trip to Italy'

Bob Hammerle says the stars of "The Trip to Italy" have no shame when they get together.

Start Page: Microsoft Outlook distribution lists reduce email frustration

Have you ever used the “reply all” option on an email that has multiple recipients, only to get a return email notifying you that one (or more) of the email addresses was typed incorrectly by the original sender? Or, do you frequently email the same group of people by typing one email address at a time, only to realize that you forgot to include someone (usually right after you hit send)? The solution? Use distribution lists in Microsoft Outlook.

Quick: Use the tools available to market today’s law firms

Lawyers are trying new and different ways to advertise with more focus on websites and digital media. But even today, problems remain.

Sidebars: Noblesville eatery’s Buffalo chicken sandwich is tasty surprise

We give Copper Still Kitchen & Bar 3 gavels!

In Brief

Judge rules for defendants in Indy skyline photo copyright suit

A retired attorney and photographer who has filed numerous infringement lawsuits over the use of his copyrighted photo of the Indianapolis skyline lost a contested case. The ruling judge also said the purported value of the photo is questionable.

Justices hear constitutional challenge to right-to-work law

Indiana’s right-to-work statute is clearly anti-union, one state Supreme Court justice said Thursday, but all five justices seemed dubious of arguments that it violated the state constitution.

Special Sections

Indiana Court Decisions - Aug. 20 to Sept. 2, 2014

Read recent Indiana appellate decisions.

On The Move

On the Move - 9/10/14

Read who's recently joined Indiana firms or been elected to a board.

Disciplinary Actions

Disciplinary Actions - 9/10/14

Read who's recently been suspended or resigned from the Indiana bar.

Bar Associations

DTCI: The Affordable Care Act and medical malpractice claims

How will the law affect medical malpractice claims in Indiana?

DTCI: Award nominations invited

The Defense Trial Counsel’s Annual Meeting will be held Nov. 20 - 21 at French Lick Resort. One of the highlights of the meeting is the presentation of the Defense Lawyer of the Year, the Diplomat of the Indiana Defense Trial Counsel, and the Outstanding Young Lawyer awards.

IndyBar: Getting Along Is Not Wrong: Law and the Golden Rule

How often have you filed an emergency Motion for Continuance only to have an opposing counsel file an “Objection for the Record?” Frankly, I am amazed at how often attorneys file these coded objections to let the court know that while the attorney has no real objection, he or she is filing it only on behalf of the client.

IndyBar: Ricafort to Lead Indianapolis Bar Association in 2017

The Indianapolis Bar Association’s Nominating Committee has announced the selection of Nissa M. Ricafort of Broyles Kight & Ricafort PC as the 2017 President of the Indianapolis Bar Association. Ricafort will serve as the association’s First Vice President on the 2015 Board of Directors and as President Elect in 2016.

Duncan: The Impact of One for the Indianapolis Bar Foundation

very IndyBar member can make a tangible impact by donating to the IBF. Please commit to being a part of our Impact of One campaign, and donate your one billable hour.

IndyBar Frontlines - 9/10/14

News from around the IndyBar.

IndyBar: Evening Under the Stars Through the Years

People return year after year for Evening Under the Stars, the Indianapolis Bar Foundation (IBF)’s hallmark fundraising effort. The event, which takes place this year on Oct. 10, consists of an elegant dinner, silent and live auctions and, of course, a treasure trove of memories for those who attend.
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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:

  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: 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: