Legal organizations/services

Norman Metzger praised for longtime leadership at ILS

August 27, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Like many young adults in the 1960s, Norman Metzger was inspired by the belief that it is possible to change the world. After a lifetime in public service, the 75-year-old attorney has never lost his passion to make things better for those who have little means and often no voice.
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Indiana IOLTA expected to benefit from Bank of America settlement

August 25, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Indiana’s Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Account program is expecting to receive a portion of the federal government’s historic multi-billion-dollar settlement with Bank of America, bringing a much-needed influx of funds to the program that has suffered dramatic declines in revenues as a result of the economic recession.
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At new immigration clinic, 'We're all family'

August 20, 2014
 Associated Press
At its most basic level, Lafayette Urban Ministry's immigration services clinic is about family. That notion was in the forefront of Jefferson High School senior Devon Wolfe's mind as he designed the logo for the newly launched clinic.
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Long-time legal aid leader stepping down

August 12, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Indiana Legal Services executive director Norman Metzger has announced he will retire March 31, 2015, ending a tenure at the nonprofit that stretched more than four decades.
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ACLU of Indiana to host discussion of government surveillance

May 30, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
A panel of experts next week will take a closer look at the devices that are taking a closer look at us.
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5 lawsuits keep marriage debate alive in Indiana

March 26, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
The attorney general says he will defend the Indiana Defense of Marriage Act unless the Supreme Court of the United States rules otherwise.
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Legal Service Corp. requests substantial boost in funding to meet growing need

March 5, 2014
IL Staff
In the budget released March 4, the White House recommended the Legal Services Corp. receive a federal appropriation of $430 million for the fiscal year 2015.
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ILAS keeps eye on fundraising after successful holiday dollar campaign

February 12, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Indianapolis Legal Aid Society continues to position itself to cope with a significant loss of support from its main contributor.
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Indiana Legal Services’ case load likely to increase with additional federal dollars

January 31, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
After watching its federal appropriation sink to $4.7 million during the economic downturn, Indiana Legal Services is set to receive a boost in funding for the 2014 calendar year.
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COA Judge Riley to chair access to civil legal services panel

January 27, 2014
Dave Stafford
Court of Appeals Judge Patricia Riley has been appointed to chair the Commission to Expand Access to Civil Legal Services created last year by order of the Indiana Supreme Court.
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Untying the knot yourself

January 1, 2014
Marilyn Odendahl
Couples forgoing legal counsel in divorce risk creating big messes the courts can’t clean up.
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Legal service nonprofits look to private dollars as public funds shrink

December 4, 2013
Marilyn Odendahl
The alteration the Indianapolis Legal Aid Society made this season to its letters soliciting donations reflects a strategic decision by the nonprofit to go after higher contributions and underscores the need for service organizations of any kind to be aggressive.
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Fostering cooperation between Indiana legal service providers

November 20, 2013
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Supreme Court has formed a new commission to address the problem of Indiana residents who cannot afford legal services. But rather than giving attention to the clients, this group will focus on the nonprofit agencies that provide the assistance.
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Faith in practice

October 23, 2013
Marilyn Odendahl
Red Mass reinforces the value of respect, civility and community in the legal profession.
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Dickson: Trial courts face 'crisis' of unrepresented litigants

October 23, 2013
Dave Stafford
About three in five litigants appearing in Indiana’s civil trial courts are doing it themselves, according to data compiled from statewide case filings this summer.
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Legal aid agency now has room to grow

October 14, 2013
IL Staff
The Indianapolis Legal Aid Society has completed its move into larger office space which will help the organization service its growing roster of clients.
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Legal aid group, IndyBar, church to join for refugee Green Card effort

October 8, 2013
IL Staff
About 70 refugees from at least seven nations are expected to receive free legal help this weekend thanks to efforts of the Neighborhood Christian Legal Clinic, the Indianapolis Bar Association, Grace Community Church and other volunteers.
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416 pass July bar exam

September 24, 2013
Dave Stafford

July 2013 bar exam results were published today, and 416 of 557 people sitting for the test passed, according to statistics posted by the Indiana Board of Law Examiners.

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Guantanamo court reporters to address convention

September 20, 2013
IL Staff
Court reporters part of the “StenOps” team reporting the military tribunal hearings of suspected terrorists at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, will be among the featured speakers at the annual convention of the Indiana Shorthand Reporters Association Sept. 27-29.
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St. Thomas More Society plans Red Mass, honors for Zore

September 20, 2013
IL Staff
The St. Thomas More Society of Indianapolis will honor Marion Superior Probate Court Judge Gerald Zore with its Man for All Seasons award following its annual Red Mass on Wednesday, Oct. 9.
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Second expungement forum to include private consultations with attorneys

September 5, 2013
IL Staff
A second public forum on Indiana’s new expungement law will include a panel discussion as well as free consultations with attorneys.
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ACLU suit targets Evansville schools’ service-dog restrictions

August 30, 2013
IL Staff
Evansville public schools’ restrictive policy on service dogs is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the ACLU of Indiana contends in a federal lawsuit filed on behalf of two high-schoolers whose medical conditions require the animals.
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Family Justice Center of St. Joseph County awarded grant to expand project

August 28, 2013
IL Staff
The Family Justice Center of St. Joseph County has been awarded a two-year grant to support its work with victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and stalking.
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Paralegals take another stab at proposed rule on voluntary certification

July 31, 2013
Dave Stafford
Marion Superior Judge David Shaheed paid tribute to the professionals of the Indiana Paralegal Association at the group’s annual meeting July 17.
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ACLU of Indiana to look at civic literacy at August event

July 19, 2013
IL Staff
The August edition of the ACLU’s First Wednesdays program will ask if democracy can survive given the current state of civic literacy in the United States.
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  1. Applause, applause, applause ..... but, is this duty to serve the constitutional order not much more incumbent upon the State, whose only aim is to be pure and unadulterated justice, than defense counsel, who is also charged with gaining a result for a client? I agree both are responsible, but it seems to me that the government attorneys bear a burden much heavier than defense counsel .... "“I note, much as we did in Mechling v. State, 16 N.E.3d 1015 (Ind. Ct. App. 2014), trans. denied, that the attorneys representing the State and the defendant are both officers of the court and have a responsibility to correct any obvious errors at the time they are committed."

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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)

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