Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard

Evansville Bar to collaborate with school for history video

October 21, 2010
Rebecca Berfanger
As part of the Evansville Bar Association’s activities to commemorate its 100th anniversary, which will take place as part of their Law Day celebration in April 2011, the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation and the EBA announced today they will collaborate on a video of the last 100 years of the legal community in southwestern Indiana.
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High court divided on faulty workmanship coverage under CGL policy

October 1, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The high court split on whether an “occurrence” under a commercial general liability policy covers an insured contract for faulty workmanship of its subcontractor.
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Vested employer-provided health-insurance premiums are an asset

September 29, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court held that employer-provided health-insurance benefits constitute an asset once they have vested in a party to the marriage, and addressed for the first time the possible methods of valuing these benefits in marriage dissolution. This conclusion led one justice to dissent because it disrupts existing dissolution property division law.
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SCOTUS asked to take both judicial canons appeals

September 29, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A Terre Haute attorney wants the nation’s highest court to review two appellate cases out of Indiana and Wisconsin that uphold judicial canons and pose free speech questions about what judicial candidates can say or do when campaigning for office.
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Justices remand to see if defendant had accurate interpreting

September 29, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court ordered the post-conviction court to hold a new hearing for a Mexican man who claimed he didn’t mean to plead guilty to two felonies and did so only because of faulty interpreting in court.
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Majority orders new requirement for pro se defendants with little guidance

September 29, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Three Indiana Supreme Court justices created a new requirement as an exercise of supervisory powers when it comes to informing future defendants about the dangers of proceeding pro se, leaving two justices to dissent because the new requirement provides no guidance as to what trial courts must do or say.
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High court clarifies harmless error under Sixth Amendment

September 21, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer to a man’s case in order to address the application of harmless error to Sixth Amendment violations involving confronting those who create laboratory reports.
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Judges not required to report recusals, reasons for stepping aside

September 15, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Judicial recusals are a serious topic, but Indiana law professor Charles Geyh can’t help but wonder how much lawyers and the public really know about requests and reasons for judges to step away from a case.
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Justices: BMV can require names to match SSA records

September 10, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The trial court was correct to find that the public interest in preventing fraudulent use of driver’s licenses trumps some people’s desire to have their commonly used names on their licenses, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled today.
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7th Circuit upholds Indiana's judicial canons

September 1, 2010
Michael Hoskins
At a time when the legal community is caught up in controversies about how judges are selected and whether they can remain impartial, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has weighed in on that national debate and ruled that states have the authority to self-regulate on those issues as it relates to judicial canons.
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CJ signs order for increased judicial education requirements

August 25, 2010
IL Staff
Indiana judges and magistrates will have to take more judicial education classes to improve their legal skills next year.
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Justice selection process wasn't always public

August 4, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Twenty-five years ago, choosing an Indiana Supreme Court justice was confidential.
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Indiana Supreme Court review analyzes trends, voting patterns

July 7, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Every summer, an attorney-authored review analyzes and highlights the Indiana Supreme Court’s activity during the past year. But only rarely does that report come at a time when the state’s highest court is seeing change.
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Evansville bar preps for anniversary

July 7, 2010
Rebecca Berfanger
Leading to its 100th anniversary in less than a year, the Evansville Bar Association has been making preparations to celebrate the anticipated completion of The Randall T. Shepard Courtroom.
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High court opening process wasn't public 25 years ago

July 2, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The nearly three-dozen attorneys who’ve applied to become the state’s newest justice sets a record for the past 25 years, but it falls short of the number who’d applied for an Indiana Supreme Court post a quarter century ago.
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Justices answer certified question

June 29, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court Monday answered the certified question sent to them by the U.S. District Court in New York about what standard should be applied in determining whether a director is “disinterested” under Indiana Code Section 23-1-32-4(d).
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Partnership targets Indiana's corrections system

June 28, 2010
Elizabeth Brockett
To address Indiana’s growing prison population and increasing related costs, the state is partnering with The Pew Center on the States and the Council of State Governments Justice Center for the first comprehensive review of the state’s criminal code and sentencing policies since 1976.
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Nominees sought for pro bono Shepard award

June 8, 2010
IL Staff
The Indiana Pro Bono Commission is seeking nominees for the Excellence in Pro Bono Publico Randall T. Shepard Award.
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ICLEO initiative gets national attention from rising fellows

May 26, 2010
Michael Hoskins
When he was named to the Madison Circuit bench late last year, Judge Rudolph “Rudy” Pyle III made history in that he became not only the county’s first African-American jurist but also the first Indiana Conference for Legal Education Opportunities graduate to be elevated to the state’s judiciary at that level.
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Indiana's chief justice receives award for diversity efforts

May 7, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The National Black Law Students Association has honored Indiana Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard for his trailblazing work in diversifying the legal community, largely with the creation of the Indiana Conference for Legal Education Opportunity
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Indiana chief justice getting national award

April 13, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard will receive a prestigious award from the American Judicature Society, recognizing his judicial excellence in the state.
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Justices: Agreement was impermissibly modified

January 28, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A LaPorte Superior judge made an impermissible modification to a divorced couple's settlement agreement by giving the bank's lien on the family farm priority over the ex-wife's lien, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled today.
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State of Judiciary to air on PBS

January 22, 2010
IL Staff
For those who weren't able to catch Chief Justice Randall T. Shepard's State of the Judiciary in person or want to see it again, Indiana Public Broadcasting Stations around the state will air the speech next week.
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Chief justice: courts handling the tough times

January 20, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The recession has hit Indiana's judiciary just as it has everyone else, but the state's chief justice said record numbers of cases are slamming the courts and the General Assembly can help ease that caseload.
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Justices split on transfer of noncompete case

December 21, 2009
Michael Hoskins
Two Indiana Supreme Court justices disagreed with their colleagues in not accepting an appeal, finding that a ruling from the state's intermediate appellate court muddled caselaw on medical business and noncompete agreements, and significantly jeopardizes the public's access to medical care.
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  1. Where may I find an attorney working Pro Bono? Many issues with divorce, my Disability, distribution of IRA's, property, money's and pressured into agreement by my attorney. Leaving me far less than 5% of all after 15 years of marriage. No money to appeal, disabled living on disability income. Attorney's decision brought forward to judge, no evidence ever to finalize divorce. Just 2 weeks ago. Please help.

  2. For the record no one could answer the equal protection / substantive due process challenge I issued in the first post below. The lawless and accountable only to power bureaucrats never did either. All who interface with the Indiana law examiners or JLAP be warned.

  3. Hi there I really need help with getting my old divorce case back into court - I am still paying support on a 24 year old who has not been in school since age 16 - now living independent. My visitation with my 14 year old has never been modified; however, when convenient for her I can have him... I am paying past balance from over due support, yet earn several thousand dollars less. I would contact my original attorney but he basically molest me multiple times in Indy when I would visit.. Todd Woodmansee - I had just came out and had know idea what to do... I have heard he no longer practices. Please help1

  4. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  5. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

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