Courts

Insurer needs notice of claim to defend it

April 28, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
An insurer can't defend a claim of which it has no knowledge and its duty to defend doesn't begin until it receives basic notice information to allow it to defend a claim, ruled the Indiana Supreme Court.
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COA upholds workplace restraining order

April 28, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals today analyzed for the first time the legal parameters required to affirm an order issued to protect a person under the Workplace Violence Restraining Order Act. The appellate court turned to the Indiana Civil Protection Order Act to provide context for analyzing cases under the WVROA.
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Court rules on ADR sanctions, Open Door Law

April 28, 2009
Michael Hoskins
Trial courts can sanction government entities through the state's Alternative Dispute Resolution Rules, but officials aren't necessarily acting in bad faith if they don't immediately approve mediated agreements to comply with the Indiana Open Door Law, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled today.
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COA upholds attorney's felony conviction

April 27, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of an attorney's motion to have his prior drunk-driving conviction reduced to a misdemeanor because the attorney was arrested again for drunk driving before completing his probation.
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High court reverses termination of mom's rights

April 27, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The majority of Indiana Supreme Court justices ruled in a parental termination case that the evidence presented didn't clearly show a mother's rights to her son should be terminated. One justice dissented because he believes an appellate court should defer to the lower court in assessing the facts of a case.
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Attorney again denied use of pseudonym in suit

April 24, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
A northern Indiana attorney who filed a lawsuit against Porter Memorial Hospital and its employees following her involuntary detention has once again lost her battle to proceed using a pseudonym instead of her real name.
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Supreme Court grants 2 transfers

April 24, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court granted transfer Thursday to an ineffective assistance of trial counsel case and a case involving the testimony at trial of a previous victim of a defendant.
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COA invites high court to revisit Indiana law

April 24, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
In a case involving the purchase of a home, Indiana Court of Appeals judges today disagreed as to whether the home sellers should be granted summary judgment in a fraud suit. The judges unanimously did agree to encourage the Indiana Supreme Court to re-evaluate a rule that protects a seller from a lawsuit, even if he lies about a property, as long as the prospective buyer had a reasonable opportunity to inspect the property.
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UPDATE: Committee tweaking St. Joe judges bill

April 23, 2009
Michael Hoskins
A legislative conference committee is debating what changes might be possible for a bill aimed at scrapping merit selection for St. Joseph Superior judges.
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Comment sought on drug, alcohol rules

April 23, 2009
IL Staff
The Court Alcohol and Drug Program Advisory Committee of the Judicial Conference of Indiana is seeking public comment regarding proposed written amendments to the Rules for Court Administered Alcohol and Drug Programs.
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Officers say wrong textbook hurt promotions

April 23, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Three current Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers have filed a suit against the city because they received the wrong textbooks to study for a promotion examination.
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Man gets money for not paying into pension

April 23, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
In a strange twist in a bankruptcy case, a businessman actually benefited financially by not paying into a pension fund for his company.
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Former justice discusses merit selection

April 22, 2009
Michael Hoskins
During a visit to South Bend today, former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor pushed a message that merit selection is the best way to ensure an independent judiciary, though her words come at a time when state lawmakers are close to scrapping that very system in the county she visited.
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Prosecutor orders grand jury investigation

April 22, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The special prosecutor appointed to investigate the shooting of LaPorte Superior Judge Jennifer Evans Koethe has requested LaPorte Circuit Court convene a grand jury investigation into the matter.
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Rare second hearing set for judge's nomination

April 22, 2009
Michael Hoskins
In an unusual move, the Senate Judiciary Committee will hold a second judicial nomination hearing next week for U.S. District Judge David F. Hamilton, who's being considered for a seat on the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
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COA rules in negligent application process case

April 21, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Addressing an issue today for the first time in state courts, the Indiana Court of Appeals had to determine whether a couple could sue their insurance broker for alleged negligence during the application process.
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High court dismisses transfer petition

April 21, 2009
IL Staff
In an order posted today, the Indiana Supreme Court dismissed April 10 a petition to transfer to a breach of contract suit regarding the purchase of a hotel at auction.
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Annual 7th Circuit meeting in Indy

April 21, 2009
IL Staff
United States Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens and Rev. David Link, Dean Emeritus of the University of Notre Dame School of Law, are just two of the speakers at this year's Judicial Conference of the 7th Circuit and the annual meeting of the 7th Circuit Bar Association in Indianapolis.
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Judges uphold mail fraud conviction

April 20, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
Although it noted the question was a "close one," the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals determined there was sufficient evidence to support a man's conviction of mail fraud in his scheme to defraud the government out of money for work he didn't complete.
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COA reclassifies workplace e-mail case

April 20, 2009
IL Staff
The Indiana Court of Appeals April 16 reclassified a not-for-publication opinion regarding an Indiana Department of Local Government Finance employee's use of his work e-mail account.
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Court clarifies continuing objection procedure

April 20, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
If a trial court grants a continuing objection, counsel doesn't have to object each time the class of evidence is subsequently offered, but if the trial court doesn't specifically grant the right to a continuing objection, counsel must object to the evidence as it is offered in order to preserve the issue on appeal, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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Judge: Courts failing on mental illness

April 17, 2009
Michael Hoskins
An Indiana Court of Appeals judge today lambastes the criminal justice system's efforts in dealing with defendants who may never be competent to stand trial, inviting more to be done by either the state's lawmakers or highest court.
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COA travels to Lafayette for arguments

April 17, 2009
IL Staff
The Indiana Court of Appeals travels to Lafayette April 20 to hear a case regarding the delayed return of children to their mother following the death of a sibling.
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High court hears first 'rocket docket' appeal

April 17, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
In the first appeal of a juvenile case under Indiana Appellate Rule 14.1, the "rocket docket," the Indiana Supreme Court ruled the juvenile court's determination that a child shouldn't be immediately reunited with his mother until after the school year concluded - contrary to what the Department of Child Services recommended - wasn't clearly erroneous.
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Defendant can't 'earn' sentence modification

April 17, 2009
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals vacated a man's robbery sentence because it found the trial court abused its discretion when sentencing him and couldn't legally reduce his sentence as it said it would if he participated in educational and vocational programs while incarcerated.
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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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