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Judge: Names in workforce development cases should remain confidential

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There appears to be discord among the judges on the Indiana Court of Appeals as to whether party names should be confidential in workforce development cases.

Chief Judge Margret Robb and Judges Edward Najam and Terry Crone released an unemployment benefits decision Thursday using only initials to identify the parties: company S.S. and employee D.H. In the opinion – in which the judges affirmed the finding of the Review Board of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development that D.H. was not terminated for just cause and is eligible for unemployment benefits – authoring Judge Najam and Chief Judge Robb noted they agreed with the recent opinion by another panel that names of parties should be used in workforce development cases.

But in S.S. LLC v. Review Board and D.H., No. 93A02-1101-EX-56, Judge Crone wrote a 7-page concurring opinion in which he agreed with the outcome of D.H.’s case, but felt that initials should be used instead of party names in review board case captions and opinions. This is contrary to the unanimous opinion issued Aug. 12 in LaDon A. Moore v. Review Board and Whitington Homes and Services, No. 93A02-1005-EX-529, in which authoring Judge John Baker and Judges James Kirsch and Elaine Brown held statute and administrative rules did not require the court to use initials in these types of cases.

The Moore judges noted that the initials-only practice began Jan. 1, 2010 – even though Indiana Code 22-4-19-6 has remained much the same since 1947 – when the issue was brought up that amendments to Administrative Rule 9(G) required using initials. In Moore, the review board had filed a motion asking the court to publish the names of the parties, individuals, and employment units in that case and all future cases.

Judge Crone found the position of the Moore court to be contrary to law and even pointed out that the Indiana Supreme Court adopted Administrative Rule 9(G)(1)(b)(xviii) using initials at the request of a former chief judge of the COA, making a reference to Judge Baker without using his name by saying that the chief judge also authored Moore.

Crone disagreed with the analysis in the Moore decision, believing that the rule amendment does apply to the Court of Appeals, that the COA’s opinions are easily searchable online regardless of whether full names are used, and opinions are not the same thing as an order for purposes of I.C. 22-4-19-6(b).

“More generally, I am dubious about the propriety of a single panel of this Court issuing a ruling on a motion in a single case that will affect the privacy rights of unemployment litigants in future cases,” Judge Crone wrote. “I have no position on the propriety of or the wisdom behind the rule as written, but I believe that we must follow it until such time as it is repealed by our supreme court. I would encourage our supreme court to visit this issue by court opinion or rule change to give proper guidance in and finality to this matter.”

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  1. Just an aside, but regardless of the outcome, I 'm proud of Judge William Hughes. He was the original magistrate on the Home place issue. He ruled for Home Place, and was primaried by Brainard for it. Their tool Poindexter failed to unseat Hughes, who won support for his honesty and courage throughout the county, and he was reelected Judge of Hamilton County's Superior Court. You can still stand for something and survive. Thanks, Judge Hughes!

  2. CCHP's real accomplishment is the 2015 law signed by Gov Pence that basically outlaws any annexation that is forced where a 65% majority of landowners in the affected area disagree. Regardless of whether HP wins or loses, the citizens of Indiana will not have another fiasco like this. The law Gov Pence signed is a direct result of this malgovernance.

  3. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  4. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  5. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

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