Court opinions

Housing-discrimination lawsuits backed by US Supreme Court

June 25, 2015
 Bloomberg News
The Supreme Court of the United States said people who file housing-discrimination lawsuits don’t have to show they were victims of intentional bias, in a blow to lenders and insurers and a surprise legal victory for the Obama administration.
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SCOTUS upholds nationwide health care law subsidies

June 25, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States on Thursday upheld the nationwide tax subsidies under President Barack Obama's health care overhaul, in a ruling that preserves health insurance for millions of Americans.
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Merrillville attorney disbarred for stealing funds

June 24, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A northern Indiana attorney who stole trust account funds belonging to his former law partner and that partner’s clients, and embezzled hundreds of thousands of dollars from a receivership, has been disbarred by the Indiana Supreme Court.
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ITCA does not apply to lawsuit challenging local firearm law

June 24, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
An Evansville man suing the city for enforcing a local law prohibiting firearms in public parks is not effectively bringing a tort claim, as the city argued in its motion on the pleadings. The Court of Appeals affirmed denial of the city’s motion, finding the claim is being brought pursuant to I.C. 35-47-11.1-5, which creates a private right of action for individuals to enforce that statute’s provisions.
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Inmate not disadvantaged by appearing at trial by video

June 23, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed Monday that a New Jersey inmate who filed a retaliation lawsuit against officials at an Indiana prison while he was housed there was not disadvantaged when the judge denied his request to be transported to Indiana for the trial. The judge instead ordered he appear by video conferencing.
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Post-conviction relief unavailable for traffic infractions

June 22, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A man ticketed for a traffic violation and speeding is not entitled to post-conviction relief or relief from judgment, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Monday. Post-conviction relief is only available when someone has committed a crime.
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Teen’s arrest did not violate 4th Amendment

June 22, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a teen’s adjudication for carrying a handgun handed down after police arrested the occupants of the car he was riding in after smelling burnt marijuana during a traffic stop. The judges unanimously held the officers had probable cause to arrest the car’s occupants, including the teen.
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Record supports capping trustee fees at 1.5 percent

June 19, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court did not err when it concluded that a community foundation which took over acting as trustee of a charitable trust will have its fees capped at 1.5 percent of the trust’s annual assets, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Friday.
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COA orders corrected notification sent to BMV, suggests form update

June 19, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ordered a trial court to send a corrected notice to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles that shows judgment was only entered on two of the four charges a man was convicted of related to his speeding in Brown County. The judges also suggested that the BMV update its form to avoid future confusion as shown in this case.
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Homeowners association loses appeal of assessments

June 19, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Finding that an Indianapolis homeowners association did not make any cognizable claims using the Form 133 appeal procedure to appeal assessments on its common area land, the Indiana Tax Court affirmed the dismissal of its petitions to correct error.
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No error in granting variance for pet boarding facility

June 18, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld the decision to grant a variance to a company seeking to build an upscale dog and cat boarding and day-care facility on the northwest side of Indianapolis. A hotel located next to the property objected, fearing noise from the animals would deter business.
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Inmate’s failure to comply with ITCA dooms lawsuit

June 18, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A Department of Correction inmate who sued several government employees after he was injured when he fell out of a pickup truck lost his appeal before the Indiana Court of Appeals Thursday.
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Justices rule for small Arizona church in sign law dispute

June 18, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States ruled Thursday for an Arizona church in a dispute over a town's sign law in a decision that three justices said could threaten municipal sign regulations across the country.
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Confederate flag license plate bid spurned by top US court

June 18, 2015
 Bloomberg News
Texas acted legally when it refused to issue a license plate depicting the Confederate battle flag, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled in a decision that means dozens of states won’t have to open up their specialty-tag programs.
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Justices reverse life sentence based on error by judge

June 17, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court upheld a Gary man’s convictions related to the death of a woman he met at a bar, but it reversed the sentence of life without possibility of parole because the trial court’s sentencing order lacked a personal statement from the judge that the sentence is the appropriate one for the defendant.
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Court split over whether man must remain on sex offender registry

June 17, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
An Indiana man who committed Class A felony child molesting in 1988 will remain on the Indiana Sex Offender Registry, a divided Court of Appeals held Wednesday.
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State failed to show defendant conspired to rob gas station

June 17, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a man’s conviction of conspiracy to commit robbery while armed with a deadly weapon because the state did not present evidence that the defendant and another man conspired ahead of time to rob a Lawrenceburg gas station.
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Former St. Joseph County couple may divorce in Hamilton County

June 16, 2015
Dave Stafford
A couple married 45 years who lived in St. Joseph County until the husband moved several months ago may divorce in Hamilton County, where he moved, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday.
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Justices take dispute over county road

June 15, 2015
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer to a not-for-publication Court of Appeals decision over whether a gravel drive to a landlocked 40 rural acres in Jackson County is a public road by use.
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7th Circuit revives Anderson transit worker’s ADA claim

June 15, 2015
Dave Stafford
A mechanic's helper with the City of Anderson Transit System won the right to pursue his claims that his firing violated his rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
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SCOTUS: Immigration deadlines can be extended

June 15, 2015
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court of the United States ruled Monday that federal appeals courts have authority to decide whether people facing deportation should be able to extend the deadlines in immigration proceedings.
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Court rules spouse can’t protest husband’s visa denial

June 15, 2015
 Associated Press
A California woman can’t challenge the government’s decision to deny a visa to her spouse from Afghanistan, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled Monday.
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Bisard exhausts appeals as justices deny transfer

June 15, 2015
 Associated Press, IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court won’t hear an appeal from former Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Officer David Bisard, who was convicted of killing one motorcyclist and seriously injuring two others while driving drunk in his police cruiser.
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Appeals court sets aside conviction of bin Laden assistant

June 12, 2015
 Associated Press
A federal appeals court on Friday set aside the military commission conviction of a Guantanamo Bay detainee who allegedly produced an al-Qaida recruiting video and served as Osama bin Laden's personal assistant and public relations secretary.
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Reversal: IDACS error no basis to suppress meth evidence

June 12, 2015
Dave Stafford
Southern Indiana authorities who arrested a man for buying pseudoephedrine had probable cause even though the suspect had not been convicted of a prior methamphetamine charge, as a state database reported.
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  1. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  2. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  3. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  4. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

  5. "No one is safe when the Legislature is in session."

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