Opinion

Dean's Desk: Stewart Fellows bring global experience to Indiana

May 6, 2015
Austen Parrish
Globalization, once the exclusive domain of so-called international lawyers, now touches many lawyers’ practices. For this reason, the IU Maurer School of Law has been on the forefront of offering global opportunities to our students.
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Neutral Corner: Admitting mediation communications in bad-faith actions

May 6, 2015
John Van Winkle
Are statements, offers and demands made during a mediation admissible in a bad-faith case? This issue is presently pending before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals and is being watched by many in the mediation community with the hope it will clarify to what extent exceptions will continue to be created to the mediation confidentiality statutes.
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Technology Untangled: Remember this useful tip for fixing a computer

May 6, 2015
Stephen Bour
There is always so much new information to learn and absorb when utilizing and maintaining your computer. Sometimes, though, you can forget about some of the really good things you already know (or knew). After digging deep into a recent computer problem that appeared to be a major issue, I remembered to try an easy fix.
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Michael: The importance of Article 7 of the Ind. Administrative Code

May 6, 2015
Article 7 of the Indiana Administrative Code provides standards, procedures and protections for students with disabilities and is a “lucky number” for attorneys to remember when it comes to clients and their educational needs.
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Hammerle On…'The Water Diviner,' 'Ex Machina'

May 6, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle gives Russell Crowe credit for trying to match the power of "All Quiet on the Western Front" in his movie "The Water Diviner."
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Lechleiter: PTO improves adversarial procedures for challenging patents

April 22, 2015
As the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issues more and more patents each year, inevitably many companies will find themselves named as defendants in patent-infringement litigation.
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McCauley: Are you prepared for a data breach litigation?

April 22, 2015
John McCauley
Data breaches can be very stressful events for an organization and counsel should be prepared to help a client navigate the complexities of a proper response. At the end of the day, maintaining the client’s ongoing relationship with its customers and its reputation in the marketplace should be the primary goal of the client and counsel.
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Indiana Lawyer owner reflects on paper’s 25-year history

April 22, 2015
The Indiana Lawyer was launched 25 years ago with a quest to have a prestigious publication that would be educational and enjoyable, and have a positive impact on the legal community.
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Making Rain: Use these tips to improve email etiquette

April 22, 2015
Dona Stohler
Maybe you are thinking, “What does email etiquette have to with business development?” Generally, quite a lot.
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Living Fit: It's up to you to be happy

April 22, 2015
Sharon McGoff
For most of us, the answer to the question, “Are you happy?” depends upon who we’re with, our health, work life, finances and family dynamics.
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Hammerle On… 'Fast & Furious 7,' 'While We're Young'

April 22, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle says even if you have to wear a disguise, you should go see "Fast & Furious 7."
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Dean's Desk: Preparing for a more specialized profession

April 8, 2015
Nell Jessup Netwon
The legal community is keenly aware of the trend toward ever-increasing specialization in the legal profession. The trend has picked up steam every year during the past decade.
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Hammerle On… 'What We Do in the Shadows,' 'It Follows'

April 8, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle says "What We Do in the Shadows," a mockumentary about four vampires, is an inspiring bit of cinematic lunacy.
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Stevenson: Construction contractor non-delegable duties: then & now

April 8, 2015
With over 200 years of history, the non-delegable duty doctrine is not likely to disappear. As with many long-standing legal principles, it will likely be molded to fit today’s complex construction world.
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Quality of Life: Take steps toward a course for new beginnings

April 8, 2015
Jonna Kane MacDougall
While some behaviors may have helped us progress through life at one time, often they become limiting as we develop and mature. There are ways to change these patterns – to create new internal responses or maps, so to speak, so that you will move in a different direction from your old way of being.
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Start Page: Tips to reduce email notification distraction

April 8, 2015
Seth Wilson
Love it or hate it, email is here to stay. With electronic filing, more of our practice becomes electronic every day.
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Waggoner: What I’ve learned from lawyers gone bad

April 8, 2015
Recent news of Hoosier attorneys donating $100,000 to the victims of disgraced Indiana lawyer Bill Conour prompts several thoughts about bad lawyers and the consequences for those victims.
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Hammerle On…'Chappie' and 'The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel'

March 25, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle says “Chappie” was "everything that I didn’t think it would be."
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Dean's Desk: Learning to write for the law

March 11, 2015
Andrea D. Lyon
One of the educational challenges facing those of us in higher education (not just law) is teaching writing. The entry of what is often referred to as the millennial generation into higher education has shown a marked decrease in prior opportunities to write, to be critiqued, and, sadly, even to have been instructed in the basics of grammar, sentence structure and syntax.
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Lucas: Indiana Lawyer names 2015 Leadership in Law award winners

March 11, 2015
Kelly Lucas
Congratulations to our 2015 Leadership in Law Distinguished Barristers and Up and Coming Lawyers! This year’s group comprises an exceptional representation of legal talent, and Indiana Lawyer is pleased to have the opportunity to honor their work.
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Technology Untangled: Meet face-to-face with these free video-chat apps

March 11, 2015
Stephen Bour
This article will look at Firefox Hello and compare it to the similar GoToMeeting.
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Chamberlain: Brain injury awareness month highlights affects on survivors

March 11, 2015
March is brain injury awareness month in the United States, recognizing that 3.5 million Americans suffer a brain injury each year. Brain injury is a lifelong, ongoing and degenerative disease process that affects survivors, their families and the general public.
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Hammerle On … The Oscars revisited; 'McFarland, USA'

March 11, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle calls "McFarland, USA" a Hispanic version of the movie "Hoosiers."
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Start Page: Get more out of your iPhone using these 3 tips

February 25, 2015
Seth Wilson
It seems to me that more lawyers are using iPhones. Almost all the attorneys in my office use an iPhone, and I see iPhones at depositions, hearings and client meetings.
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DTCI: Still learning after all these years in practice

February 25, 2015
From DTCI
The practice of law is still exciting and challenging for me, even as I approach my 34th year of practice.
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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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