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Indiana to raise attorney registration fees

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Annual registration fees for Indiana attorneys will increase nearly 25 percent, the Indiana Supreme Court announced in an order issued Monday.
 
The registration fee for active attorneys will increase from $145 to $180, and fees for lawyers whose status is inactive will rise from $72.50 to $90. The annual registration period opens Aug. 1, and the fees are due by Oct. 1 each year.

“The members of the Supreme Court reviewed the budgets and made the determination that the increase is needed to sustain our programs and agencies,” spokeswoman Kathryn Dolan said.

Fees were last raised in 2011, and Dolan said the state’s current fees are among the lowest in the country.

Registration fees paid by attorneys fund the operation of the Indiana Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission, Judges and Lawyers Assistance Program and the Commission for Continuing Legal Education.

Delinquent fees also will increase by $35 for those who register after the Oct. 1 deadline. The penalty will rise from $95 to $130 for those who pay by Oct. 15; from $145 to $180 for those who register from Oct. 15 to Dec. 31; and from $295 to $330 for those who register after Dec. 31.

Regarding fees compared to other states, “Indiana is so low that whether we’re counted as lowest or second-lowest is negligible,” Dolan said. That analysis is tricky, though, she said, because some states include mandatory state bar fees or other fees that Indiana doesn’t.

Even among voluntary bar states, Indiana’s fees are below average, Dolan said.

Indiana State Bar Association President Jim Dimos said increases are never popular, but the registration dues remain low compared to states that don’t include mandatory bar fees.

“From our experience at the state bar, the court seems to administer things relatively modestly,” Dimos said. “While no one’s happy about paying more fees, we’re confident the court thought long and hard about this and believes they need these resources to continue to provide services to lawyers in the state of Indiana.”

The court relied on a July 2013 attorney registration fee survey from the Office of Attorney Ethics of New Jersey that showed Indiana’s fees ranked 50th compared to the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Maryland’s fee of $130 was lowest; Oregon’s fee of $3,722 – which includes a mandatory malpractice fee – was highest.

Indiana is among 18 voluntary bar states whose registration fee does not include a portion shared with state bar organizations. Of those states, Indiana’s fees also are second-lowest, the New Jersey survey found. The average registration fee in those states is $255, with Connecticut charging the highest, $675 annually.

In 2011, registration fees increased $15 after increasing by a like amount the prior year. The 2011 increase coincided with introduction of the online registration portal, http://appealsclerk.IN.gov.

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  1. I just wanted to point out that Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner, Senator Feinstein, former Senate majority leader Bill Frist, and former attorney general John Ashcroft are responsible for this rubbish. We need to keep a eye on these corrupt, arrogant, and incompetent fools.

  2. Well I guess our politicians have decided to give these idiot federal prosecutors unlimited power. Now if I guy bounces a fifty-dollar check, the U.S. attorney can intentionally wait for twenty-five years or so and have the check swabbed for DNA and file charges. These power hungry federal prosecutors now have unlimited power to mess with people. we can thank Wisconsin's Jim Sensenbrenner and Diane Feinstein, John Achcroft and Bill Frist for this one. Way to go, idiots.

  3. I wonder if the USSR had electronic voting machines that changed the ballot after it was cast? Oh well, at least we have a free media serving as vicious watchdog and exposing all of the rot in the system! (Insert rimshot)

  4. Jose, you are assuming those in power do not wish to be totalitarian. My experience has convinced me otherwise. Constitutionalists are nearly as rare as hens teeth among the powerbrokers "managing" us for The Glorious State. Oh, and your point is dead on, el correcta mundo. Keep the Founders’ (1791 & 1851) vision alive, my friend, even if most all others, and especially the ruling junta, chase only power and money (i.e. mammon)

  5. Hypocrisy in high places, absolute immunity handed out like Halloween treats (it is the stuff of which tyranny is made) and the belief that government agents are above the constitutions and cannot be held responsible for mere citizen is killing, perhaps has killed, The Republic. And yet those same power drunk statists just reel on down the hallway toward bureaucratic fascism.

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