Indiana Lawyer Staff

Courthouse artwork on display at ISBA

March 31, 2010
Rebecca Berfanger
The Indiana State Bar Association's courthouse art project is now on display for the public at the ISBA's offices in downtown Indianapolis.
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2 county court systems get e-filing approval

March 31, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Two of Indiana's largest counties are getting close to putting electronic filing plans into place after receiving a green light from the Indiana Supreme Court late last year and early this year for pilot projects.
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SCOTUS rules against student-loan company

March 31, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Supreme Court of the United States clarified March 23 the discharge of federal student-loan debt in bankruptcy involving an Indianapolis-based education loan guarantor.
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Legal process on mental illness isn't yet where it should be

March 31, 2010
Michael Hoskins
Courts nationally began in the mid-1990s to focus on mental illness and how the judiciary could fine-tune what it does to better address that issue. But many within the Hoosier legal community say that the criminal justice system hasn't gone far enough in the past decade, and both the courts and society are a long way from where they need to be on addressing mental illness.
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Non-profit offers legal aid to food pantry clients

March 31, 2010
Rebecca Berfanger
On a sunny, brisk Tuesday morning in March, the parking lot for the St. Vincent de Paul Society warehouse on the northeast side of Indianapolis was completely full.
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Recent SCOTUS ruling was 'brainchild' of Terre Haute attorney Jim Bopp

March 31, 2010
Michael Hoskins
In the world of campaign finance and election law, Terre Haute attorney Jim Bopp is one of the leading legal minds involved in some of the most influential cases in these areas of law.
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Judges rule on custody issues

March 30, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
When modifying custody, the change in circumstances required by Indiana Code doesn't need to be so decisive in nature as to make the change necessary for the child's welfare, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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COA lengthens defendant's sentence

March 30, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals revised a defendant's sentence for rape and other convictions, but it may not have been what the man had in mind when he appealed. In a rare move, the Court of Appeals increased his sentence by 25 years.
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Prosecutor spokesman arrested for drunk driving

March 29, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
An attorney and spokesman for the Marion County Prosecutor's Office was arrested March 27 for drunk driving.
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Indiana joins lawsuit over health-care bill

March 29, 2010
IL Staff
The Indiana Attorney General announced today that Indiana will join 13 other states in challenging the recently passed federal health-care law.
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Law professor not named as recess appointment

March 29, 2010
Michael Hoskins
A Bloomington law professor tapped for a leading Department of Justice job wasn't among those included in recess appointments during the weekend by President Barack Obama, but the administration hopes that she'll soon be considered for a full Senate vote.
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Company not bound by defiant agent's actions

March 26, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court erred in finding that a company was bound by its insurance agency's acts even though the agency acted against the company's wishes, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled today.
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COA: no error in admitting no contest plea

March 25, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A plea of no contest can be admitted under Indiana Evidence Rule 803(8) as a public record proving the fact of a conviction, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed today. The appellate court found no error in admitting a defendant's nolo contendere plea to a Florida murder as proof he was convicted of an offense qualifying him as a serious violent felon.
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Tax return doesn't require attached appraisal

March 25, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
Indiana code doesn't require an estate to file an appraisal with its inheritance tax return, the Indiana Tax Court decided in two opinions handed down Wednesday.
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Justices: Search didn't violate 4th Amendment

March 24, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A warrantless search of a probationer's property that is conducted reasonably and supported by a probation search term and reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, doesn't violate Fourth Amendment rights, the Indiana Supreme Court held today.
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Speakers to debate judicial activism

March 23, 2010
IL Staff
Speakers from the American Constitution Society and the Federalist Society will debate the definition, examples, and relevance of judicial activism at the Indiana University Maurer School of Law next week.
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Attorney general may fight health-care bill

March 23, 2010
IL Staff
Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller is considering options for legally challenging the federal health-care legislation.
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7th Circuit: expenses were capital expenditures

March 23, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
An Indianapolis-based health insurer can't deduct its settlement payments or legal expenses from the litigation because the insurer's payments were actually capital expenditures, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed today.
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Estate entitled to hearing on cause of fire

March 23, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A plaintiff is entitled to a hearing on whether vandalism caused the fire at an unoccupied home, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled today. The District Court never made a finding on the investigation that indicated it may have been burglars who started the fire.
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Justices vacate life sentence

March 22, 2010
Jennifer NelsonMore

COA to hear arguments at IU-Indy

March 19, 2010
IL StaffMore

Lawsuit to take bar exam dismissed, re-filed

March 19, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The man who sued the Indiana Supreme Court and State Board of Law Examiners because he wants to take the bar exam without going to law school had his case dismissed in federal court this week due to failure to pay the filing fee. He then re-filed his suit Thursday, alleging the same claims.
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SCOTUS chief justice to speak at IU-Indy

March 17, 2010
IL Staff
The chief justice of the United States Supreme Court will deliver the ninth annual James P. White Lecture on Legal Education at Indiana University School of Law - Indianapolis.
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Man didn't timely file petition to reopen estates

March 17, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court correctly denied the request to reopen the estates of a man's deceased parents to correct an error because he failed to timely file his petition, the Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed.
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New judge gets 60-day unpaid suspension

March 17, 2010
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court has suspended LaPorte Superior Judge Jennifer L. Koethe for 60 days without pay, effective March 12.
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  1. Call it unauthorized law if you must, a regulatory wrong, but it was fraud and theft well beyond that, a seeming crime! "In three specific cases, the hearing officer found that Westerfield did little to no work for her clients but only issued a partial refund or no refund at all." That is theft by deception, folks. "In its decision to suspend Westerfield, the Supreme Court noted that she already had a long disciplinary history dating back to 1996 and had previously been suspended in 2004 and indefinitely suspended in 2005. She was reinstated in 2009 after finally giving the commission a response to the grievance for which she was suspended in 2004." WOW -- was the Indiana Supreme Court complicit in her fraud? Talk about being on notice of a real bad actor .... "Further, the justices noted that during her testimony, Westerfield was “disingenuous and evasive” about her relationship with Tope and attempted to distance herself from him. They also wrote that other aggravating factors existed in Westerfield’s case, such as her lack of remorse." WOW, and yet she only got 18 months on the bench, and if she shows up and cries for them in a year and a half, and pays money to JLAP for group therapy ... back in to ride roughshod over hapless clients (or are they "marks") once again! Aint Hoosier lawyering a great money making adventure!!! Just live for the bucks, even if filthy lucre, and come out a-ok. ME on the other hand??? Lifetime banishment for blowing the whistle on unconstitutional governance. Yes, had I ripped off clients or had ANY disciplinary history for doing that I would have fared better, most likely, as that it would have revealed me motivated by Mammon and not Faith. Check it out if you doubt my reading of this, compare and contrast the above 18 months with my lifetime banishment from court, see appendix for Bar Examiners report which the ISC adopted without substantive review: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS

  2. Wow, over a quarter million dollars? That is a a lot of commissary money! Over what time frame? Years I would guess. Anyone ever try to blow the whistle? Probably not, since most Hoosiers who take notice of such things realize that Hoosier whistleblowers are almost always pilloried. If someone did blow the whistle, they were likely fired. The persecution of whistleblowers is a sure sign of far too much government corruption. Details of my own personal experience at the top of Hoosier governance available upon request ... maybe a "fake news" media outlet will have the courage to tell the stories of Hoosier whistleblowers that the "real" Hoosier media (cough) will not deign to touch. (They are part of the problem.)

  3. So if I am reading it right, only if and when African American college students agree to receive checks labeling them as "Negroes" do they receive aid from the UNCF or the Quaker's Educational Fund? In other words, to borrow from the Indiana Appellate Court, "the [nonprofit] supposed to be [their] advocate, refers to [students] in a racially offensive manner. While there is no evidence that [the nonprofits] intended harm to [African American students], the harm was nonetheless inflicted. [Black students are] presented to [academia and future employers] in a racially offensive manner. For these reasons, [such] performance [is] deficient and also prejudice[ial]." Maybe even DEPLORABLE???

  4. I'm the poor soul who spent over 10 years in prison with many many other prisoners trying to kill me for being charged with a sex offense THAT I DID NOT COMMIT i was in jail for a battery charge for helping a friend leave a boyfriend who beat her I've been saying for over 28 years that i did not and would never hurt a child like that mine or anybody's child but NOBODY wants to believe that i might not be guilty of this horrible crime or think that when i say that ALL the paperwork concerning my conviction has strangely DISAPPEARED or even when the long beach judge re-sentenced me over 14 months on a already filed plea bargain out of another districts court then had it filed under a fake name so i could not find while trying to fight my conviction on appeal in a nut shell people are ALWAYS quick to believe the worst about some one well I DID NOT HURT ANY CHILD EVER IN MY LIFE AND HAVE SAID THIS FOR ALMOST 30 YEARS please if anybody can me get some kind of justice it would be greatly appreciated respectfully written wrongly accused Brian Valenti

  5. A high ranking Indiana supreme Court operative caught red handed leading a group using the uber offensive N word! She must denounce or be denounced! (Or not since she is an insider ... rules do not apply to them). Evidence here: http://m.indianacompanies.us/friends-educational-fund-for-negroes.364110.company.v2#top_info

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