Legal News

Dickson: ‘Time is right’ to step down as chief justice

June 11, 2014
Dave Stafford
Saying “the time is right for this transition,” Chief Justice Brent Dickson announced Wednesday he would relinquish his leadership of the state Supreme Court but will remain as an associate justice until he faces mandatory retirement in just over two years.
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Reasonable suspicion needed to search home detention participant’s residence

June 11, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the suppression of evidence found at a Tippecanoe County home by community corrections officers, finding the roommate of the man on home detention had a reasonable expectation of privacy.
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Judges order protective order extension recalculated

June 11, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Finding a 28-year extension of a protective order to be unreasonable, the Indiana Court of Appeals ordered the trial court to determine a “reasonable extension.”
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COA rules against former Junior Achievement boss in defamation suit

June 11, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed that a central Indiana organization and its president did not defame the former president of Junior Achievement of Central Indiana or tortiously interfere with a business relationship.
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Constitutional convention proponents to meet in Indiana Statehouse

June 11, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The movement to convene a constitutional convention aimed at reining in the power of the federal government is coming to Indianapolis June 12 and 13.
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Dickson stepping down as chief justice

June 11, 2014
IL Staff
Indiana Chief Justice Brent Dickson announced Wednesday that he will step down as chief justice sometime before Sept. 1. Dickson plans on staying on the Supreme Court as an associate justice until he reaches the mandatory retirement age of 75 in July 2016.
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Uninsured coverage doesn't include property damage in hit-and-run accident

June 11, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court Tuesday affirmed summary judgment for an insurance company that its motor vehicle policy issued to a family does not provide uninsured motorists coverage in a hit-and-run accident.
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COA affirms judgment in coverage dispute between insurance companies

June 10, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a trial court’s judgment regarding indemnification clauses and coverage under insurance policies. The issue came before the trial court after a worker sought compensation for severe injuries he sustained when he was electrocuted on the construction site of a Wal-Mart in Boone County.
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Judges order good-time credit reinstated

June 10, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The head inmate law clerk at an Indiana correctional facility is entitled to the 30 days of good-time credit that the prison revoked after finding he used the library’s computers without authorization. But the inmate was just following orders from prison library staff, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals pointed out.
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Bankruptcy Court seeks volunteers for pro bono panel

June 10, 2014
IL Staff
The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Indiana is accepting new volunteers who would like to work on the court’s Bankruptcy Pro Bono Panel.
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COA: Schools required to transport students for free

June 10, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday that Indiana students cannot be charged to ride the bus to and from school. The judges found an arrangement between a school corporation and a private company that required parents to pay for their children to ride the bus violated the state constitution.
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7th Circuit reverses ‘troubling’ ruling in discrimination case

June 9, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Because a District Court judge made several errors in analyzing the evidence brought by an African-American electrician in his lawsuit alleging he wasn’t hired because of his race, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals reversed judgment in favor of the company.
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Nonprofit unable to prove it is entitled to charitable tax exemption

June 9, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Tax Court Friday upheld the decision to deny a charitable purposes exemption for the 2006 tax year to a Bartholomew County nonprofit that provides housing for low-income residents. The court agreed the nonprofit failed to show that its rental properties qualified for the exemption under I.C. 6-1.1-10-16.
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Justices decline injured officer’s benefits case

June 9, 2014
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court will leave in place the amount of disability benefits an Indianapolis police officer will receive after he was shot in the line of duty.
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IMPD lawyer to be deposed in councilor’s wrongful arrest case

June 6, 2014
Dave Stafford
Lawyers for Indianapolis City-County Councilman Joseph Simpson may depose a city attorney about legal advice she gave in another case regarding a state statute at the heart of Simpson’s wrongful arrest case, a federal judge ruled Friday.
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Youth Summer Legal Institute set for IU McKinney

June 6, 2014
Dave Stafford
Teenagers interested in legal careers will learn from judges, lawyers and other legal professionals at a program June 16-20 at Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law in Indianapolis.
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State bar solo and small conference examining future of law

June 6, 2014
IL Staff
The 2014 Indiana State Bar Solo & Small Firm Conference runs through Saturday and the theme of the 13th annual conference is “The Future of Law.”
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Court orders defendants to wear leg restraints at trial

June 6, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A federal judge in Terre Haute has granted the government’s request that two defendants wear modified leg irons at an upcoming jury trial due to their violent criminal histories – both outside of prison and while incarcerated. The men face charges stemming from the murder of a fellow inmate.
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Federal court seeks comment on local sentencing procedure rule

June 6, 2014
IL Staff
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana has determined there is a need to amend Local Criminal Rule 13.1 on sentencing procedure and is accepting comment on the proposed changes.
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COA: Man’s sentence after guilty plea is illegal

June 5, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a man’s 10-year sentence resulting from a guilty plea for abusing his adopted teenaged children, holding that the sentence was based on an incorrect application of I.C. 35-50-1-2.
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Electronic devices must be turned off in Southern District courtrooms

June 5, 2014
IL Staff
If you plan on bringing your mobile phone, tablet or any other electronic device into court in the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Indiana, make sure you turn it off. That’s an order from Chief Judge Richard Young.
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Spanish-speaking man did not waive rights in plea, justices hold

June 5, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A non-native English speaker was able to show the Indiana Supreme Court that, during his guilty plea hearing, he was not properly advised of the constitutional rights he was waiving by pleading guilty. The justices reversed the denial of his petition for post-conviction relief.
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Tax Court affirms 2006 assessment appealed pro se

June 5, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
Although sympathetic to a mother and daughter’s plight, the Indiana Tax Court affirmed the 2006 assessment of a downtown Indianapolis condominium. The judge pointed out that pro se litigants are held to the same standards as licensed attorneys.
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Dropped charges against former IURC chief won’t be appealed

June 5, 2014
IL Staff
The state no longer is contesting the dismissal of official misconduct charges against former Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission Chairman David Lott Hardy.
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Husband’s agreement doesn’t preclude judgment against wife

June 4, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
A company is allowed to sue both parties who executed a promissory note seeking recovery of owed funds because it will still only be entitled to one satisfaction on the debt, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday.
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  1. I can understand a 10 yr suspension for drinking and driving and not following the rules,but don't you think the people who compleate their sentences and are trying to be good people of their community,and are on the right path should be able to obtain a drivers license to do as they please.We as a state should encourage good behavior instead of saying well you did all your time but we can't give you a license come on.When is a persons time served than cause from where I'm standing,its still a punishment,when u can't have the freedom to go where ever you want to in car,truck ,motorcycle,maybe their should be better programs for people instead of just throwing them away like daily trash,then expecting them to change because they we in jail or prison for x amount of yrs.Everyone should look around because we all pay each others bills,and keep each other in business..better knowledge equals better community equals better people...just my 2 cents

  2. I was wondering about the 6 million put aside for common attorney fees?does that mean that if you are a plaintiff your attorney fees will be partially covered?

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  4. I expressed my thought in the title, long as it was. I am shocked that there is ever immunity from accountability for ANY Government agency. That appears to violate every principle in the US Constitution, which exists to limit Government power and to ensure Government accountability. I don't know how many cases of legitimate child abuse exist, but in the few cases in which I knew the people involved, in every example an anonymous caller used DCS as their personal weapon to strike at innocent people over trivial disagreements that had no connection with any facts. Given that the system is vulnerable to abuse, and given the extreme harm any action by DCS causes to families, I would assume any degree of failure to comply with the smallest infraction of personal rights would result in mandatory review. Even one day of parent-child separation in the absence of reasonable cause for a felony arrest should result in severe penalties to those involved in the action. It appears to me, that like all bureaucracies, DCS is prone to interpret every case as legitimate. This is not an accusation against DCS. It is a statement about the nature of bureaucracies, and the need for ADDED scrutiny of all bureaucratic actions. Frankly, I question the constitutionality of bureaucracies in general, because their power is delegated, and therefore unaccountable. No Government action can be unaccountable if we want to avoid its eventual degeneration into irrelevance and lawlessness, and the law of the jungle. Our Constitution is the source of all Government power, and it is the contract that legitimizes all Government power. To the extent that its various protections against intrusion are set aside, so is the power afforded by that contract. Eventually overstepping the limits of power eliminates that power, as a law of nature. Even total tyranny eventually crumbles to nothing.

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