Court opinions

Circuit Court rules on first impression issueRestricted Content

February 9, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals resolved an issue of first impression today: what is needed to be deemed "adequate writing" under the Telecommunications Act of 1996.
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Majority affirms conviction despite no witnesses

February 9, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
An appellate judge dissented from the majority's decision to uphold a woman's conviction of operating a car after her driving privileges had been forfeited for life, finding that confirming her conviction would break from precedent.
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Judges reverse theft conviction

February 9, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a defendant's conviction of theft because the trial court failed to instruct the jury on conversion as a lesser-included offense of theft.
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COA split on whether company can repurchase stock

February 8, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A panel of Indiana Court of Appeals judges disagreed as to whether a company's attempt to exercise its option to repurchase stock had occurred in a timely manner under a shareholders' agreement.
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7th Circuit Court: Class action suit isn't mootRestricted Content

February 4, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A class action lawsuit filed by an inmate at the Tippecanoe County Jail who has since been transferred can proceed through the litigation process to determine if class action certification is proper, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals concluded today.
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Little court guidance on repressed memory litigation results in trial court splitRestricted Content

February 3, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Reaching into a person's mind to revive repressed memories is an issue that's settled law in one sense, but what remains unsettled is how such memories are used during litigation and whether a lawsuit should be tossed or allowed to proceed to trial.
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COA rules on service of summons issues

February 3, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals addressed service of summons issues in foreclosure actions in two decisions today, finding the servicing parties needed to do more to ensure the recipients actually get notice.
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Judges affirm finding teen is a CHINS

February 2, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld the finding that a 17-year-old is a child in need of services, ruling that evidence of her drug test wasn't irrelevant and was properly admitted by the trial court.
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Appeals court split on parol evidence issue

February 1, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Judges on the Indiana Court of Appeals were split on whether a boss's oral promise to a future employee regarding a severance package would be barred from consideration by the parol evidence rule.
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COA differs on why no insurer duty to defend

January 29, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A panel of Indiana Court of Appeals judges agreed that two insurance companies are entitled to summary judgment, but the judges disagreed as to why the insurers owed no duty to defend.
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7th Circuit affirms permanent injunctionRestricted Content

January 28, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld an injunction preventing the application of Indiana's Uniform Consumer Credit Code to an Illinois company because it violates the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution.
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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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COA: lawyer-client privilege protects information

January 28, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A defendant's belief that his right to seek exculpatory evidence trumps the attorney-client privilege is incorrect, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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7th Circuit affirms writ of habeas corpusRestricted Content

January 27, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
On remand from the Supreme Court of the United States, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the District Court's conditional grant of the petition for a writ of habeas corpus for a man facing the death penalty.
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County immunity in weather-related accident

January 27, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court affirmed summary judgment for a county sued as a result of a weather-related accident, holding government liability immunity in steps taken as a result of the weather lasts until at least the weather condition has stabilized.
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COA reverses 4 attempted robbery convictions

January 27, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed four convictions of attempted robbery after finding the evidence didn't support a reasonable inference that the defendant intended to rob each of the alleged victims.
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COA affirms mentally ill man's murder conviction

January 27, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals was compelled today by Indiana Supreme Court precedent to affirm a murder conviction for a man who was found guilty but mentally ill.
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Immunity extends to underlying diagnoses

January 26, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
In a matter of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded that a hospital's statutory immunity for reporting suspected child abuse to authorities extends to its underlying diagnosis.
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COA: Parole revocation not unconstitutional

January 25, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed that the decision to revoke a defendant's parole because he refused to take a polygraph test wasn't based on an impermissible ex post facto application of state statute.
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Justices abandon 'mere possession' rule

January 22, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court's decision Thursday abandoned the "mere possession rule" when it comes to convictions of theft and receiving stolen property and restored the state's original view that the possession of recently stolen property should be considered with other evidence in the case.
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Majority: No double jeopardy in enhancement

January 20, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
In a matter of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals was divided about whether a man's sentence enhancement based on his use of a deadly weapon violated the application of double-jeopardy principals.
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COA: annexed parcels must touch each other

January 20, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reaffirmed today that Indiana requires that an annexation ordinance applies only to solid, unbroken areas of land. This issue arose in an annexation dispute between two northern Indiana towns.
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COA: No presumption of undue influence

January 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A 2005 amendment to Indiana Code sets aside the common law presumption of undue influence with respect to certain transactions benefiting an attorney in fact, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today on an issue of first impression.
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Dad who took son owes arrearage to mom

January 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals split today in its decision of who should receive back child support payments from a father who kidnapped his son for 16 years before turning himself in when the son was 23 years old.
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Circuit Court upholds attorney-fee reduction

January 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals wasn't swayed by an attorney's arguments that the amount of attorney's fees he was entitled to shouldn't have been reduced by nearly $90,000.
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  1. Bill Satterlee is, indeed, a true jazz aficionado. Part of my legal career was spent as an associate attorney with Hoeppner, Wagner & Evans in Valparaiso. Bill was instrumental (no pun intended) in introducing me to jazz music, thereby fostering my love for this genre. We would, occasionally, travel to Chicago on weekends and sit in on some outstanding jazz sessions at Andy's on Hubbard Street. Had it not been for Bill's love of jazz music, I never would have had the good fortune of hearing it played live at Andy's. And, most likely, I might never have begun listening to it as much as I do. Thanks, Bill.

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  5. Additional Points: -Civility in the profession: Treating others with respect will not only move others to respect you, it will show a shared respect for the legal system we are all sworn to protect. When attorneys engage in unnecessary personal attacks, they lose the respect and favor of judges, jurors, the person being attacked, and others witnessing or reading the communication. It's not always easy to put anger aside, but if you don't, you will lose respect, credibility, cases, clients & jobs or job opportunities. -Read Rule 22 of the Admission & Discipline Rules. Capture that spirit and apply those principles in your daily work. -Strive to represent clients in a manner that communicates the importance you place on the legal matter you're privileged to handle for them. -There are good lawyers of all ages, but no one is perfect. Older lawyers can learn valuable skills from younger lawyers who tend to be more adept with new technologies that can improve work quality and speed. Older lawyers have already tackled more legal issues and worked through more of the problems encountered when representing clients on various types of legal matters. If there's mutual respect and a willingness to learn from each other, it will help make both attorneys better lawyers. -Erosion of the public trust in lawyers wears down public confidence in the rule of law. Always keep your duty to the profession in mind. -You can learn so much by asking questions & actively listening to instructions and advice from more experienced attorneys, regardless of how many years or decades you've each practiced law. Don't miss out on that chance.

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