Court opinions

Justices overturn man's registration requirement

January 7, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A Grant Superior judge erred in sentencing a man to register as a sex offender because that requirement wasn't in place at the time he committed his crime, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled.
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CHINS finding establishes only status of child

January 6, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A finding that a child is in need of services only establishes the status of the child and means the child is a CHINS even if one parent isn't involved in the reasons for the determination, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled today
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Judge: Reformatted tax appeal untimely

January 5, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Even though a couple had originally filed their tax appeal within the 45-day deadline, the Indiana Tax Court still dismissed their appeal because their reformatted documents and notice of intent to appeal weren't filed until after the deadline.
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Judges uphold contingent fees award

December 30, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The contingent fee contract a law firm entered into with a city regarding a sewer fee dispute, which ultimately led to the firm collecting nearly 10 times more than the city anticipated, was valid and reasonable, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed today.
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Company filed suit within applicable limitations

December 30, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A construction company's attempt to cast itself in the same class of professionals as attorneys or architects was rejected by the Indiana Court of Appeals today. The appellate court upheld on interlocutory appeal the denial of the company's motion for summary judgment in a breach of contract complaint.
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COA: Firefighter's e-mail didn't harm department

December 22, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A firefighter shouldn't have been fired for his e-mail commenting on the financial situation of the township's fire department because the e-mail didn't impact the effectiveness of the department, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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Supreme Court rules on police traffic stops

December 21, 2009
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court has held that police don't have to verify whether the description of someone driving a vehicle matches the physical description of the registered owner obtained from a license plate check.
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COA: Store not a beneficiary of letters of credit

December 18, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled a department store has no rights derived from letters of credit between a bank and the man developing the site for a new store location.
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City violated constitution in denying refunds

December 18, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The city of Indianapolis' refusal to grant some homeowners' requests for a partial refund of Barrett Law assessments violated the Equal Protection Clause, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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COA rules on re-registration of offenders

December 17, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Two sex offenders serving or who had completed their 10-year registration period shouldn't have been required to re-register for another 10-year period after being convicted of any other crime, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded today.
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'Fireman's rule' prevents officer from filing suitRestricted Content

December 15, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The "fireman's rule" doesn't allow a professional emergency responder to file a claim for the negligence that creates the emergency to which he or she responds, the Indiana Supreme Court upheld today. As a result of its ruling, the high court unanimously ruled a police officer's complaint against an adult showclub must be dismissed.
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COA rules on excessive force under ITCA

December 15, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The use of excessive force is not conduct immunized under section 3(8) of the Indiana Tort Claims Act, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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Appellate court splits on liability of city

December 15, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals split today in deciding whether the city of South Bend should have known putting heavy machinery on an unstable sidewalk would create an unreasonable risk of harm to a brick restorer.
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Trial judge's comments spur COA reversal

December 15, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Because of a trial judge's statements following the conviction of a man for having a gun in a controlled area of an airport, the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed the conviction for insufficient evidence.
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Judges uphold molestation convictions

December 14, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a man's convictions of child molesting because it agreed the victim's recantation of the allegations weren't worthy of credit.
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Indiana Supreme Court upholds death penalty

December 10, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court today upheld the death penalty for a man convicted of killing a woman and her two daughters. In doing so, the high court re-evaluated its stance on what it means when a jury fails to recommend a sentence.
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Tax Court sidesteps first-impression issue

December 10, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Although the Indiana Tax Court had the opportunity to address an issue of first impression, it decided to save its analysis of the issue for another day because the case could be resolved on other grounds.
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Supreme Court reverses rape conviction

December 9, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court overturned a man's rape conviction because evidence of his 10-year-old conviction of attempted rape of another woman shouldn't have been admitted at trial.
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Justices uphold probation revocation

December 9, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court disagreed with the Indiana Court of Appeals that the appellate court could review a defendant's appeal - either because it qualified as a rare and exceptional case of great public interest or under Post-Conviction Rule 2. The Supreme Court deemed the man's failure to timely file an appeal to the revocation of his probation as fatal to his claim.
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COA upholds dismissal of proposed class

December 8, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Potential plaintiffs who want to join a class action suit seeking redress under the state's Wage Claims Statute must first submit a claim to the Indiana Department of Labor, the Indiana Court of Appeals upheld today.
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COA adopts 'site-specific' approach

December 3, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
For the first time, the Indiana Court of Appeals adopted a site-specific approach to rule on an insurance case with multiple policies in several states. The appellate court had been following a uniform-contract-interpretation approach when ruling on choice of law questions in contract actions.
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Justices rule on constructive discharge issue

December 2, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court decided Tuesday that a claim for constructive retaliatory discharge falls within the state's public policy exemption to the employment-at-will doctrine.
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Visitation-adoption agreement not allowed

December 1, 2009
Michael Hoskins
State law doesn't allow for post-adoption visitation that's contingent upon a voluntary termination of parental rights, the Indiana Supreme Court has ruled.
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Justices draw bright line on children's fault

December 1, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Indiana law recognizes a rebuttable presumption that children ages 7 to 14 aren't capable of contributory negligence, the state's Supreme Court has confirmed.
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High court splits in hospital negligence suit

December 1, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court split on whether a hospital was negligent in letting a woman with injuries possibly caused by domestic violence leave with her alleged abuser, who killed her on the way home after being discharged.
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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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