Legal News

Medical malpractice complaint moves forward

February 19, 2016
Scott Roberts
A man will have his medical malpractice complaint heard after the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a trial court’s decision to dismiss it.
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Interviews conclude for Supreme Court applicants

February 19, 2016
Dave Stafford
The last of 29 applicants for a pending vacancy on the Indiana Supreme Court were interviewed Friday by the Indiana Judicial Nomination Commission, which is deliberating to reduce the number for a second round of interviews. Those semifinalists are to be announced Friday.
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Court affirms grandparents’ rights to visitation

February 19, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the denial of a motion which would have denied grandparents visitation rights.
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Indianapolis family law attorney Strain dies

February 19, 2016
IL Staff
An Indianapolis solo practitioner who was active leader in bar associations died Wednesday. Jana K. Strain was 51.
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Court reinstates father’s rights

February 19, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Supreme Court reinstated a father’s parental rights, determining there was not enough evidence to support termination.
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Supreme Court affirms battery charges

February 19, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Supreme Court affirmed battery charges against a man who said the evidence against him was “testimonial hearsay” and violated his federal and state confrontation rights.
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7th Circuit reverses, remands motion to suppress evidence

February 19, 2016
Scott Roberts
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the denial of a motion to suppress evidence after police found heroin in a man’s car and remanded the case to district court because the police had no probable cause to pull over the car in the first place.
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Court reverses marijuana, nuisance convictions

February 18, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a man’s convictions after finding the probable cause affidavit did not contain enough information to support issuing a search warrant.
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Majority finds no violation of deceased inmate's 8th Amendment rights

February 18, 2016
Scott Roberts
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment for a correctional medical services provider in a lawsuit alleging the company violated an inmate’s Eighth Amendment rights against cruel and unusual punishment.
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COA affirms intimidation conviction

February 18, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Appeals Court affirmed a Level 6 felony intimidation charge against Demetrius Holloway after Holloway challenged the sufficiency of the evidence supporting his conviction.
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Ex-worker's suit: Indiana plant's illegal hiring depressed wages

February 18, 2016
 Associated Press
A former employee of an Indiana pork processing plant is suing two company officials, saying they were involved in knowingly hiring hundreds of people who weren't in the country legally in order to keep wages low for all of the plant's workers.
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Attorneys added to Marion County judicial selection committee

February 18, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The Courts and Criminal Code Committee in the Indiana House of Representatives passed an amendment Wednesday modifying the makeup of the Marion County judicial selection committee. The amendment adds more Marion County attorneys to the committee that will send names to the governor for appointment.
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Texas A&M, Colts settle '12th Man' trademark suit

February 18, 2016
 Associated Press
Texas A&M University says it has reached a settlement agreement with the Indianapolis Colts in the school's federal lawsuit it says was meant to protect its "12th Man" trademark from infringement.
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No demand futility in Biglari transactions

February 17, 2016
Scott Roberts
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has affirmed a decision that a company did not commit demand futility during three transactions in 2013.
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Court OKs increase in CLE distance education hours

February 17, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Supreme Court passed an order Monday increasing the number of continuing legal education hours that judges and lawyers can take through distance education.
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Scalia vacancy boosts prospects for Obama’s carbon-cutting plan

February 17, 2016
 Bloomberg News
The U.S. Supreme Court vacancy created by Justice Antonin Scalia’s death improves the outlook for President Barack Obama’s controversial plan to cut carbon emissions from U.S. power plants, just a week after the court raised doubts about its viability.
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Indiana justice applicant interviews to begin Wednesday

February 16, 2016
IL Staff
Twenty-nine lawyers and judges vying to replace retiring Indiana Supreme Court Justice Brent Dickson will be interviewed by the Judicial Nominating Commission beginning Wednesday morning and continuing Thursday and Friday.
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Judges uphold sentence, find prosecutorial misconduct claim moot

February 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a man’s convictions and sentence for possession of cocaine, resisting law enforcement and misdemeanor possession of marijuana, among other charges.
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COA: Neither party entitled to summary judgment in ‘household’ definition dispute

February 16, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals held summary judgment is inappropriate for either party in a lawsuit seeking to declare a woman who was renting a home as a member of the household of the homeowners for insurance purposes.
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Logger’s theft convictions stands on appeal

February 16, 2016
Dave Stafford
A southern Indiana logger convicted of three counts of theft after he reneged on agreements to equally split proceeds with landowners for timber he harvested from their property lost his appeal Tuesday. The Indiana Court of Appeals rejected his claims he was denied a speedy trial and the evidence was insufficient.
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Justices: Couple not entitled to prescriptive easement

February 16, 2016
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court on Tuesday reversed the holding of a trial court that a couple should receive a prescriptive easement for the use of their outbuildings that encroached onto a strip of land purchased at a tax sale.
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COA upholds jury verdict in fired worker’s complaint

February 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a ruling from Elkhart Superior Court that a man was entitled to $412,680 in compensatory and punitive damages after his employer fired him without cause after he filed a workers’ compensation claim.
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Woman loses appeal of request for protective order

February 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals has denied the appeal of a woman seeking a protective order against a man who she claims allegedly committed a sex act against her.
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Justice Antonin Scalia dead at 79

February 13, 2016
 Associated Press
Antonin Scalia, the influential conservative and most provocative member of the Supreme Court of the United States, has died, leaving the high court without its conservative majority and setting up an ideological confrontation over his successor in the maelstrom of a presidential election year. Scalia was 79.
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US joins Syrian refugee case against Pence

February 12, 2016
Dave Stafford
A federal judge had tough questions Friday for the lawyer representing Gov. Mike Pence as he tried to make a case for state sovereignty in attempting to block the resettlement of Syrian refugees in Indiana. Oral arguments came on the heels of the U.S. Justice Department entering the case, claiming Pence’s actions discriminated on the basis of national origin.
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  2. Mr. Levin says that the BMV engaged in misconduct--that the BMV (or, rather, someone in the BMV) knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged fees but did nothing to correct the situation. Such misconduct, whether engaged in by one individual or by a group, is called theft (defined as knowingly or intentionally exerting unauthorized control over the property of another person with the intent to deprive the other person of the property's value or use). Theft is a crime in Indiana (as it still is in most of the civilized world). One wonders, then, why there have been no criminal prosecutions of BMV officials for this theft? Government misconduct doesn't occur in a vacuum. An individual who works for or oversees a government agency is responsible for the misconduct. In this instance, somebody (or somebodies) with the BMV, at some time, knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged. What's more, this person (or these people), even after having the error of their ways pointed out to them, did nothing to fix the problem. Instead, the overcharges continued. Thus, the taxpayers of Indiana are also on the hook for the millions of dollars in attorneys fees (for both sides; the BMV didn't see fit to avail itself of the services of a lawyer employed by the state government) that had to be spent in order to finally convince the BMV that stealing money from Indiana motorists was a bad thing. Given that the BMV official(s) responsible for this crime continued their misconduct, covered it up, and never did anything until the agency reached an agreeable settlement, it seems the statute of limitations for prosecuting these folks has not yet run. I hope our Attorney General is paying attention to this fiasco and is seriously considering prosecution. Indiana, the state that works . . . for thieves.

  3. I'm glad that attorney Carl Hayes, who represented the BMV in this case, is able to say that his client "is pleased to have resolved the issue". Everyone makes mistakes, even bureaucratic behemoths like Indiana's BMV. So to some extent we need to be forgiving of such mistakes. But when those mistakes are going to cost Indiana taxpayers millions of dollars to rectify (because neither plaintiff's counsel nor Mr. Hayes gave freely of their services, and the BMV, being a state-funded agency, relies on taxpayer dollars to pay these attorneys their fees), the agency doesn't have a right to feel "pleased to have resolved the issue". One is left wondering why the BMV feels so pleased with this resolution? The magnitude of the agency's overcharges might suggest to some that, perhaps, these errors were more than mere oversight. Could this be why the agency is so "pleased" with this resolution? Will Indiana motorists ever be assured that the culture of incompetence (if not worse) that the BMV seems to have fostered is no longer the status quo? Or will even more "overcharges" and lawsuits result? It's fairly obvious who is really "pleased to have resolved the issue", and it's not Indiana's taxpayers who are on the hook for the legal fees generated in these cases.

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