Courts

Court erred in concluding it lacked jurisdiction over military husband

May 7, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals sent a divorce case back to the trial court Thursday because the trial court erred in concluding that it lacked jurisdiction over the husband on division of property and spousal maintenance issues.
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Auto theft conviction of man who did not return rental car upheld

May 7, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A Porter County man convicted of auto theft argued that his failure to return a rental car was a civil case and misunderstanding with the rental company, but the Court of Appeals upheld his Class D felony conviction.
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2nd Circuit: NSA phone record collection is excessive

May 7, 2015
 Associated Press
The bulk collection of Americans' phone records by the government exceeds what Congress has allowed, a federal appeals court said Thursday as it asked Congress to step in and decide how best to protect national security and privacy interests.
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New magistrates approved for 7 counties

May 6, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Seven Indiana counties have been given approval to appoint new magistrate judges to their local courts. Gov. Mike Pence signed House Enrolled Act 1110 on May 5.
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Pacquiao's next fight looms in Vegas court over bum shoulder

May 6, 2015
 Bloomberg News
Manny Pacquiao went into the richest match in boxing history without telling fans and gamblers he had a bum shoulder. Now he faces a fight in court.
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Reporter may need to testify, interview notes remain private

May 6, 2015
 Associated Press
A northern Indiana judge has ruled a newspaper reporter does not have to turn over notes and recordings from an interview she conducted with a man accused of murder and the suspect's mother. But Elkhart Circuit Judge Terry Shewmaker said she does have to be available to testify as a rebuttal witness.
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Do-over expected to bring same result in contraception case

May 6, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
In a second round of oral arguments regarding the University of Notre Dame’s challenge to the Affordable Care Act’s contraception mandate, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals not only remained dubious of the school’s assertions but also seemed perplexed as to why the case came back to the court.
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Jury is out on Indiana Tax Court

May 6, 2015
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court on April 20 appointed a task force to study the work volume, operations and performance of Indiana’s Tax Court, created in 1986 by the Legislature to remove the intricate tax cases from state trial courts.
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Indiana attorney disbarred by Supreme Court for 'profoundly disturbing' behavior

May 6, 2015
Dave Stafford
R. Mark Keaton lost his license to practice law recently, but that hasn’t stopped him from continuing his vendetta against a woman who ended what the Indiana Supreme Court called “a tempestuous long-distance relationship.”
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Mediation Assistance Program appoints counsel to help litigants settle cases

May 6, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The program, started in 2009, matches attorney volunteers with pro se litigants as they enter settlement talks. In its inaugural year, MAP appointed legal counsel to two settlement conferences. By 2013, MAP attorneys assisted in 43 conferences.
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Johnson County ADR program sees uptick in caseload

May 6, 2015
 Associated Press, Dave Stafford
Every day, a program in Franklin works with families struggling with divorce, custody battles and child support disputes. The goal is to help resolve arguments, get cases through the court system faster, and help families move on.
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Parents of autistic children gird for showdown with Anthem

May 6, 2015
IBJ Staff, J.K. Wall
A showdown is brewing over autism therapy in Indiana. After an Elkhart couple with an autistic son sued Indianapolis-based health insurer Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in April, autism families around the state have started a campaign to get Anthem to change its policy for covering therapy for school-age children.
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Graham takes oath

May 6, 2015
IL Staff
Bankruptcy Judge Jeffrey Graham recently took the oath.
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7th Circuit wants rationale for sentence

May 5, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
A defendant was unable to get his revocation of probation overturned, but he is heading back to court for another sentencing after the District judge failed to give reasons for imposing a two-year jail term.
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Deaf litigant’s ADA case proceeds, minus state defendants

May 5, 2015
Dave Stafford
A judge has dismissed state defendants from a lawsuit brought by a deaf man who was denied a court-appointed interpreter during a mediation, but his lawsuit against the Marion Circuit Court will proceed.
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Pence signs bill tightening Indiana's state ethics laws

May 5, 2015
 Associated Press
Indiana Gov. Mike Pence has endorsed an overhaul of state ethics laws that requires greater financial disclosure by lawmakers and expressly prohibits elected officials from using state resources for political purposes.
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Website domain dispute pulled from justices’ calendar

May 5, 2015
Dave Stafford
A dispute over a website address that had been scheduled for oral arguments Wednesday before the Indiana Supreme Court has been settled, an attorney involved in the case said.
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New law will give immunity to volunteer medical workers

May 5, 2015
 Associated Press
Doctors, nurses and other health care providers will have civil immunity for their volunteer work under a new Indiana law.
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Indiana Supreme Court approves amended pro bono reporting rule

May 4, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Supreme Court has amended the state’s new pro bono reporting rule, narrowing the focus to measuring only the direct representation given to indigent litigants.
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Justices to review ruling for father of fatally injured moped rider

May 4, 2015
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court will hear a case, stemming from a fatal crash, in which the trial court and Court of Appeals reached different results.
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Judge allows woman's suit over jail miscarriage to proceed

May 4, 2015
 Associated Press
A federal judge has ruled that a northern Indiana woman can proceed with her lawsuit alleging negligence in a miscarriage she suffered while in custody.
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Central Indiana county seeks to develop work release program

May 4, 2015
 Associated Press
Officials in a central Indiana county are seeking to develop a community work release program that would keep the jail from becoming overcrowded and could save taxpayers the expense of having to expand or eventually build a new jail.
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Split 7th Circuit allows death penalty challenge asserting intellectual disability

May 4, 2015
Dave Stafford
A killer sentenced in Texas and awaiting execution on federal death row in Terre Haute will be allowed to proceed with efforts to present new evidence of intellectual disability that would make him ineligible for capital punishment, a 7th Circuit Court of Appeals en banc review determined in a 6-5 opinion.
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Judge, attorney credited for robust recovery for victims of securities fraud

May 1, 2015
Greg Andrews, IBJ Staff
The more than 90 investors who lost $9.7 million in a securities fraud perpetrated by Fishers hedge fund manager Keenan Hauke will recover about 33 percent of their losses - a far better outcome than is typical in cases of its kind.
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Fort Wayne attorney named new Allen Superior magistrate

May 1, 2015
IL Staff
A private practice attorney and former Indiana Department of Child Services attorney has been chosen as magistrate judge in Allen Superior Court Family Relations Division.
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  1. Do I have to hire an attorney to get co-guardianship of my brother? My father has guardianship and my older sister was his co-guardian until this Dec 2014 when she passed and my father was me to go on as the co-guardian, but funds are limit and we need to get this process taken care of quickly as our fathers health isn't the greatest. So please advise me if there is anyway to do this our self or if it requires a lawyer? Thank you

  2. I have been on this program while on parole from 2011-2013. No person should be forced mentally to share private details of their personal life with total strangers. Also giving permission for a mental therapist to report to your parole agent that your not participating in group therapy because you don't have the financial mean to be in the group therapy. I was personally singled out and sent back three times for not having money and also sent back within the six month when you aren't to be sent according to state law. I will work to het this INSOMM's removed from this state. I also had twelve or thirteen parole agents with a fifteen month period. Thanks for your time.

  3. Our nation produces very few jurists of the caliber of Justice DOUGLAS and his peers these days. Here is that great civil libertarian, who recognized government as both a blessing and, when corrupted by ideological interests, a curse: "Once the investigator has only the conscience of government as a guide, the conscience can become ‘ravenous,’ as Cromwell, bent on destroying Thomas More, said in Bolt, A Man For All Seasons (1960), p. 120. The First Amendment mirrors many episodes where men, harried and harassed by government, sought refuge in their conscience, as these lines of Thomas More show: ‘MORE: And when we stand before God, and you are sent to Paradise for doing according to your conscience, *575 and I am damned for not doing according to mine, will you come with me, for fellowship? ‘CRANMER: So those of us whose names are there are damned, Sir Thomas? ‘MORE: I don't know, Your Grace. I have no window to look into another man's conscience. I condemn no one. ‘CRANMER: Then the matter is capable of question? ‘MORE: Certainly. ‘CRANMER: But that you owe obedience to your King is not capable of question. So weigh a doubt against a certainty—and sign. ‘MORE: Some men think the Earth is round, others think it flat; it is a matter capable of question. But if it is flat, will the King's command make it round? And if it is round, will the King's command flatten it? No, I will not sign.’ Id., pp. 132—133. DOUGLAS THEN WROTE: Where government is the Big Brother,11 privacy gives way to surveillance. **909 But our commitment is otherwise. *576 By the First Amendment we have staked our security on freedom to promote a multiplicity of ideas, to associate at will with kindred spirits, and to defy governmental intrusion into these precincts" Gibson v. Florida Legislative Investigation Comm., 372 U.S. 539, 574-76, 83 S. Ct. 889, 908-09, 9 L. Ed. 2d 929 (1963) Mr. Justice DOUGLAS, concurring. I write: Happy Memorial Day to all -- God please bless our fallen who lived and died to preserve constitutional governance in our wonderful series of Republics. And God open the eyes of those government officials who denounce the constitutions of these Republics by arbitrary actions arising out capricious motives.

  4. From back in the day before secularism got a stranglehold on Hoosier jurists comes this great excerpt via Indiana federal court judge Allan Sharp, dedicated to those many Indiana government attorneys (with whom I have dealt) who count the law as a mere tool, an optional tool that is not to be used when political correctness compels a more acceptable result than merely following the path that the law directs: ALLEN SHARP, District Judge. I. In a scene following a visit by Henry VIII to the home of Sir Thomas More, playwriter Robert Bolt puts the following words into the mouths of his characters: Margaret: Father, that man's bad. MORE: There is no law against that. ROPER: There is! God's law! MORE: Then God can arrest him. ROPER: Sophistication upon sophistication! MORE: No, sheer simplicity. The law, Roper, the law. I know what's legal not what's right. And I'll stick to what's legal. ROPER: Then you set man's law above God's! MORE: No, far below; but let me draw your attention to a fact I'm not God. The currents and eddies of right and wrong, which you find such plain sailing, I can't navigate. I'm no voyager. But in the thickets of law, oh, there I'm a forester. I doubt if there's a man alive who could follow me there, thank God... ALICE: (Exasperated, pointing after Rich) While you talk, he's gone! MORE: And go he should, if he was the Devil himself, until he broke the law! ROPER: So now you'd give the Devil benefit of law! MORE: Yes. What would you do? Cut a great road through the law to get after the Devil? ROPER: I'd cut down every law in England to do that! MORE: (Roused and excited) Oh? (Advances on Roper) And when the last law was down, and the Devil turned round on you where would you hide, Roper, the laws being flat? (He leaves *1257 him) This country's planted thick with laws from coast to coast man's laws, not God's and if you cut them down and you're just the man to do it d'you really think you would stand upright in the winds that would blow then? (Quietly) Yes, I'd give the Devil benefit of law, for my own safety's sake. ROPER: I have long suspected this; this is the golden calf; the law's your god. MORE: (Wearily) Oh, Roper, you're a fool, God's my god... (Rather bitterly) But I find him rather too (Very bitterly) subtle... I don't know where he is nor what he wants. ROPER: My God wants service, to the end and unremitting; nothing else! MORE: (Dryly) Are you sure that's God! He sounds like Moloch. But indeed it may be God And whoever hunts for me, Roper, God or Devil, will find me hiding in the thickets of the law! And I'll hide my daughter with me! Not hoist her up the mainmast of your seagoing principles! They put about too nimbly! (Exit More. They all look after him). Pgs. 65-67, A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS A Play in Two Acts, Robert Bolt, Random House, New York, 1960. Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen. of Indiana, Indianapolis, for defendants. Childs v. Duckworth, 509 F. Supp. 1254, 1256 (N.D. Ind. 1981) aff'd, 705 F.2d 915 (7th Cir. 1983)

  5. "Meanwhile small- and mid-size firms are getting squeezed and likely will not survive unless they become a boutique firm." I've been a business attorney in small, and now mid-size firm for over 30 years, and for over 30 years legal consultants have been preaching this exact same mantra of impending doom for small and mid-sized firms -- verbatim. This claim apparently helps them gin up merger opportunities from smaller firms who become convinced that they need to become larger overnight. The claim that large corporations are interested in cost-saving and efficiency has likewise been preached for decades, and is likewise bunk. If large corporations had any real interest in saving money they wouldn't use large law firms whose rates are substantially higher than those of high-quality mid-sized firms.

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