Court opinions

Exotic dancers are employees, may settle case

August 2, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A federal judge has found that exotic dancers at an Indianapolis club are employees, not independent contractors as the club owner argued.
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Court defines due process rights for drug court participants

July 30, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals agreed with a defendant that his due process rights were denied when his participation in a drug court program was ended without giving him notice of a hearing, or allowing him to present evidence and cross-examine witnesses.
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Court declines to review commitment cases differently

July 29, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals declined Thursday to change how it reviews cases dealing with involuntary commitment.
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7th Circuit ends use of inextricable intertwinement doctrine

July 28, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a defendant’s perjury conviction and in doing so, concluded that resorting to inextricable intertwinement is unavailable when determining a theory of admissibility.
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Mother of stillborn fetus satisfies actual victim requirement in Med-Mal Act

July 27, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals held today that a mother who suffers a stillbirth due to medical malpractice qualifies as an injured patient and satisfies the actual victim requirement under the Medical Malpractice Act, regardless of whether the malpractice resulted in injuries to the mother, fetus, or both.
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Judge worries ruling may make bright-line rule in traffic stops

July 27, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A panel of Indiana Court of Appeals judges each wrote their own opinion on whether a police officer’s safety concerns were legitimate enough to allow the officer to search a car after a traffic stop.
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Court upholds discrimination claims in coroner's office

July 27, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the finding that an African-American Marion County Coroner took action against his white chief deputy coroner because of race, but ordered a reduction in the amount of compensatory damages the deputy coroner could receive.
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Majority overturns enticement of minor conviction based on error

July 26, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Addressing for the issue for the first time, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled the “ostrich instruction” in context of 18 U.S.C. Section 2422(b) was not appropriately given to the jury in an enticement of a minor trial.
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Arbitration of FCRA claim survives bankruptcy discharge

July 26, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A man’s Fair Credit Reporting Act claim can be arbitrated even though the debt was addressed and discharged in bankruptcy proceedings, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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East Chicago casino case still alive

July 26, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A years-long court battle over millions of dollars in East Chicago casino revenue remains alive after a Marion County judge vacated an earlier dismissal of the civil suit and blocked the release of $8 million in disputed funds that had been part of a settlement.
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COA: Trial court to decide pre-sentencing educational credit time

July 23, 2010
Elizabeth Brockett
A trial court is the proper authority to determine credit if a defendant earns educational credit time prior to sentencing, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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Defendants entitled to competency hearing in probation revocations

July 22, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Defendants are entitled to a competency hearing as part of their due process rights, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded today, addressing the issue for the first time.
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Judges disagree on whether grandfather can adopt

July 21, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Judges on the Indiana Court of Appeals disagreed as to whether a grandfather could adopt his biological granddaughter but allow the mother to retain her parental rights under Indiana law.
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Medicaid applications review policy doesn't violate federal law

July 21, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
An administrative law judge’s refusal to consider evidence of conditions that aren’t disclosed on a Medicaid disability application doesn’t violate federal law and the Due Process Clause, a majority on the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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No issue with all legislative logrolling

July 21, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Supreme Court offered some clues recently about why it’s ignored repeated attempts to address the issue of legislative logrolling, where multiple unrelated changes are stuffed into one massive bill that becomes law.
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Anything you tweet may be used against you...Restricted Content

July 21, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Instant updates on Facebook and Twitter are becoming a staple in people’s lives, and those social media networks are becoming a more common part of the litigation process in state and federal courts.
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Attorney fees not recoverable under adult wrongful death statute

July 20, 2010
Elizabeth Brockett
The Indiana Court of Appeals today disagreed about an issue of first impression regarding recovery of attorney fees under the adult wrongful death statute.
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State, federal double-jeopardy challenge fails

July 20, 2010
Elizabeth Brockett
A man’s claims of federal and state double-jeopardy violations were rejected today by the Indiana Court of Appeals, which affirmed the trial court in a case involving multiple child pornography videos.
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COA reverses juvenile's exploitation adjudication

July 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a juvenile’s adjudication for exploiting an endangered adult because the state didn’t prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the 17-year-old took advantage of the mentally retarded man.
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Marion Superior traffic judge charged with misconduct

July 16, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A Marion Superior judge presiding over the county’s traffic court faces four judicial misconduct charges as a result of his general handling of traffic infraction cases and one suit in particular, where the state justices have described him as being “biased.”
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7th Circuit reverses dismissal of NCAA illegal ticket-lottery suit

July 16, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has allowed a proposed class action case claiming the National Collegiate Athletic Association operates an illegal lottery to sell tickets to certain sporting events to go forward.
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Justices uphold state's voter ID law

July 7, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Voters will still need to have valid photo identification to be able to vote in person in Indiana elections.
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Navigating the patent process

July 7, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Attorneys in the intellectual property arena waited for “the case” to come down during the past year, but what they got June 28 was anything but the landmark decision so many lawyers expected.
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Law doesn't infringe on free speechRestricted Content

July 7, 2010
Michael Hoskins
The Supreme Court of the United States ruled June 24 on the case of Doe v. Reed, No. 09-559, in which Terre Haute attorney James Bopp Jr. was the lead attorney on the case that pitted free speech versus public disclosure of ballot petition supporters.
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Booking card exception to hearsay rule

June 30, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A booking card created by law enforcement in the course of a ministerial, nonevaluative booking process is not subject to the police reports exclusion under Indiana Evidence Rule 803(8), the Indiana Court of Appeals decided today.
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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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