Court opinions

7th Circuit rules on Indiana's prison grievance process

November 23, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Addressing a question for the first time about prison inmate complaints, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals held that a prisoner's participation in internal affairs investigations isn’t an alternative for the administrative process an inmate must follow in filing a grievance.
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Supreme Court rules town can regulate aquifer's water use

November 23, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Underground aquifers are “watercourses” as defined by state law and as a result the Indiana Supreme Court says community officials have the ability to reasonably regulate how that water is taken out and used by other local governments.
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Judge rejects dental coverage cap

November 23, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Ruling puts Medicaid dental program in jeopardy.
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Knowing the possible consequences

November 23, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Legal community works to ensure defendants know plea agreements could impact immigration status.
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COA orders trial court to award credit for time served

November 22, 2011
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled a trial court erred in calculating credit for time served but found the record was insufficient to prove that additional credit time should be awarded for the defendant’s participation in a drug-treatment program.
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Tax Court rules on inheritance tax valuation

November 22, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Tax Court has rejected an estate’s attempt to sidestep trial rules by allowing verified tax returns to stand in for affidavits in determining a property’s fair market value.
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Court relies on equitable estoppel determination test

November 21, 2011
Michael Hoskins
Examining both state and national caselaw in an appeal involving an Allen County car crash, the Indiana Court of Appeals has used a two-part test in determining whether equitable estoppel is available to those filing a claim.
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COA: Serving notice on an adult's parents isn't adequate

November 21, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled that a trial court can’t serve notice on the home of someone’s parents if that adult doesn’t live there and expect that to serve as adequate notice for the party to appear in court.
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7th Circuit decides MDL appeal question

November 18, 2011
Michael Hoskins

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeal wants each federal judge handling multi-district litigation to have the flexibility to choose between sending parts of unresolved cases back to the original courts or keep those in one jurisdiction, once a final district-level decision has been made and the time for appeal arrives.

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COA affirms trial courts in truant kindergartner cases

November 18, 2011
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals has sided with the trial courts in two cases that have been consolidated in one appeal in determining that referral and attendance records for truant students were admissible at trial under the state’s business records exception.
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Court won't remove trial judge in Simon case

November 17, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has dismissed an appeal filed by Melvin Simon’s widow, finding that it doesn’t have jurisdiction to remove a Hamilton Superior judge from the case involving the late mall-magnate’s estate valued at more than $2 billion.
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Justices rule on applicable statute of limitations

November 17, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court decided Thursday that the period within the general statute of limitations controls the limitation period when a medical provider may seek payment of outstanding bills for authorized treatment to an employer’s worker. The justices came to that conclusion after finding the Worker’s Compensation Act is silent on what the applicable limitation period is for this matter.
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COA finds Army discipline does not exempt defendant from prosecution

November 17, 2011
IL Staff
The Indiana Court of Appeals has affirmed a trial court denial of a man’s motion to dismiss, rejecting his argument that being reprimanded by the United States Army precludes him from prosecution for the same offense.
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Justices: court could impose only 1 juvenile commitment

November 17, 2011
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Supreme Court has issued an opinion affirming that a juvenile may not be sentenced to both a determinate and indeterminate commitment.
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Court rules arbitration provision null and void

November 16, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
Tackling an issue of first impression, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded that an arbitration provision in a loan agreement from a payday loan provider is null and void on the grounds of impossibility because the arbitrator named in the document is no longer available.
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Man entitled to new probation revocation hearing

November 15, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ordered a new probation revocation hearing for a Wells County man after finding the reasons by the special judge as to why the man should serve his entire previously suspended sentence were “problematic.”
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COA orders special prosecutor in Camm trial

November 15, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
The county prosecutor who signed and later cancelled a book deal about his involvement in the murder trial of David Camm will not be allowed to serve as prosecutor at Camm’s third trial.
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Supreme Court to hear Affordable Care Act challenges

November 14, 2011
Michael Hoskins
In what’s expected to be a historic constitutional test over how much power the federal government has to require individual mandates for states, the Supreme Court of the United States will consider the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act passed in 2010.
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Judges uphold juvenile's adjudication

November 14, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the acceptance of a minor’s plea agreement that was not signed by either of his parents because the signature of the minor and his attorney on the plea agreement satisfied statutory requirements.
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Supreme Court to hold arguments in St. Joseph County

November 11, 2011
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court will visit Indiana University South Bend and Notre Dame Law School Monday to hear arguments in two cases, including one in which a teen was sentenced to life without parole for murdering his brother.
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South Bend attorney sentenced for fraud

November 9, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
Thomas F. “Chip” Lewis III will spend more than three years in prison following his guilty plea to aiding and abetting wire fraud stemming from an advance fee scam.
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Appellate court finds mother wasn't in contempt

November 9, 2011
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals agreed with a mother that the Clark Circuit Court erred in finding her in contempt for not putting her teenage daughter on a plane to Florida to visit the teen’s father over Christmas break. The appellate court did agree with the trial court that the mom should have to pay for another flight to visit the father.
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Indiana can't cap Medicaid coverage of dental services

November 7, 2011
Michael Hoskins
A northern Indiana federal judge has ruled that the state must fully cover dental services that are medically necessary for Medicaid participants, and it can’t deny coverage exceeding a certain amount because that would prevent some low-income individuals the ability to get needed care.
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COA orders new trial in utility theft case

November 7, 2011
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals has reversed a theft conviction and ordered a new trial for a man who was prohibited from discussing a lesser offense during closing argument.
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Court examines future medical care in workers' comp case

November 4, 2011
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Friday that just because a worker injured on the job reaches the maximum amount of compensation allowed by state statute, that doesn’t mean that future care won’t be needed, and that may warrant additional payments in order to continue treating pain or injury from the underlying accident.
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