DTCI: Don’t miss the 2013 annual meeting in Michigan City

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McComberIt is about that time of year again! The leaves have changed and are beginning to fall off the trees. Department stores are decorated for Christmas (Wait! Haven’t they been decorated since before Halloween?), and Starbucks has started using their red holiday cups. All these signs indicate that it is also time for the Defense Trial Counsel of Indiana’s Annual Meeting.

This year the DTCI Annual Meeting will be held at the Blue Chip Casino in Michigan City. The conference begins at 10 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, and continues through 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 22. If you have not yet registered to attend, I strongly encourage you to pack your suitcase with casual clothes (and a little extra green for the casino) and head north to get all the CLE you need for the year at one conference for the reasonable price of $299. Walk-ins are more than welcome!

Now you may be asking, “Why should I attend this conference rather than an all-day seminar closer to my office?” In my opinion, there are several reasons to attend. To begin with, the CLE is superb. You would be hard pressed to find a practice area not covered by one of the individual break-out sessions. Health care, employment law, workers’ compensation, product liability, business litigation, construction law, insurance coverage – you name it, there is likely an opportunity to earn CLE in your area of practice. There is even a break-out session for paralegals. There are also opportunities to hone your trial practice skills and perfect your writing skills. In addition, there are two opportunities to earn your mandatory ethics credits: one on Thursday and one on Friday. Finally, there will be more than 20 exhibitors and sponsors present to help you with all your expert needs.

In addition to the great CLE opportunities, it would be difficult to find a prominent defense attorney in your area of practice who is not attending the annual meeting. There is plenty of time built into the conference schedule to get to know the other attendees. This allows you to have access to the lawyers in Indiana who face the same issues you do. While the presentations by these lawyers in the break-out sessions are filled with helpful practice information, the informal time you have to pick these lawyers’ brains is invaluable. You know that strange fact pattern in the new case you just received? Chances are someone attending the conference has had a similar case or similar past experience and is more than willing to give you some advice on how to handle your situation.

I was recently going through some materials from past annual meetings and came across some notes from several years ago. I chuckled at the items I had written down as “new ideas” from the break-out sessions; these are now things that are fully implemented in my practice in nearly all my cases. The information you learn at the annual meeting will become part of your daily practice.

Finally, I would like to take a moment to particularly encourage young attorneys to attend the annual meeting. I attended my first annual meeting in 2002 and was slightly intimidated by how everyone seemed to know each other. I volunteered at that meeting to join the substantive law committee in the area I was practicing and was immediately able to get more involved in my substantive law section and the organization. I was also able to meet several more experienced lawyers who helped me become more involved in the organization. Now, 10 years later, there are very few faces that I fail to recognize at the annual meeting. In addition to the excellent CLE available, you will begin to foster relationships with numerous attorneys throughout the state that will become valuable resources and professional contacts.

If I have not yet convinced you to attend the annual meeting, I encourage you to check out the full brochure for the meeting at Then either register online or email Lisa Mortier at to let her know you will be registering on-site. I hope to see you in Michigan City.•


Ms. McOmber is a partner in the Indianapolis firm of Schultz & Pogue and is a member of the DTCI Board of Directors. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author.


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  1. I commend Joe for standing up to this tyrant attorney! You ask why? Well I’m one of David Steele victims. I was in desperate need of legal help to protect my child, David saw an opportunity, and he demanded I pay him $3000. Cash. As I received motions and orders from court he did nothing! After weeks of emails asking him to address the legal issues, he responded by saying he was “on vacation “and I should be so lucky to have “my attorney” reply. Finally after lie on top of lie I asked for a full refund, which he refused. He then sent me “bills” for things he never did, such as, his appearance in the case and later claimed he withdrew. He never filed one document / motion for my case! When I finally demanded he refund my money he then turn to threats which scared my family for our lives. It seem unreal we couldn’t believe this guy. I am now over $100,000 in debt digging out of the legal mess he caused my family. Later I was finally able to hire another law office. I met Joe and we worked diligently on my case. I soon learn Joe had a passion for helping people. As anyone who has been through a legal battle it is exhausting. Joe was always more than happy to help or address an issue. Joe was knowledgeable about all my concerns at the same time he was able to reduce the stress and anxieties of my case. He would stay late and come in early, he always went the extra mile to help in any way he could. I can only imagine what Joe and his family has been through, my prayers go out to him and all the victims.

  2. Steele did more than what is listed too. He purposely sought out to ruin me, calling potential employers and then lied about me alleging all kinds of things including kidnapping. None of his allegations were true. If you are in need of an ethical and very knowledgeable family law paralegal, perhaps someone could post their contact information. Ethics cannot be purchased, either your paralegal has them or they do not.

  3. This is ridiculous. Most JDs not practicing law don't know squat to justify calling themselves a lawyer. Maybe they should try visiting the inside of a courtroom before they go around calling themselves lawyers. This kind of promotional BS just increases the volume of people with JDs that are underqualified thereby dragging all the rest of us down likewise.

  4. I think it is safe to say that those Hoosier's with the most confidence in the Indiana judicial system are those Hoosier's who have never had the displeasure of dealing with the Hoosier court system.

  5. I have an open CHINS case I failed a urine screen I have since got clean completed IOP classes now in after care passed home inspection my x sister in law has my children I still don't even have unsupervised when I have been clean for over 4 months my x sister wants to keep the lids for good n has my case working with her I just discovered n have proof that at one of my hearing dcs case worker stated in court to the judge that a screen was dirty which caused me not to have unsupervised this was at the beginning two weeks after my initial screen I thought the weed could have still been in my system was upset because they were suppose to check levels n see if it was going down since this was only a few weeks after initial instead they said dirty I recently requested all of my screens from redwood because I take prescriptions that will show up n I was having my doctor look at levels to verify that matched what I was prescripted because dcs case worker accused me of abuseing when I got my screens I found out that screen I took that dcs case worker stated in court to judge that caused me to not get granted unsupervised was actually negative what can I do about this this is a serious issue saying a parent failed a screen in court to judge when they didn't please advise