State agencies

DCS admits petition flawed; COA orders more proceedings

August 31, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Gibson Circuit Court committed fundamental error in terminating the parental rights of a mother and father over their young child, the Indiana Court of Appeals held Friday. The Department of Child Services admitted that it failed to comply with statute when filing the petition to terminate their parental rights.
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State moves forward with IBM appeal

August 21, 2012
Dave Stafford
Attorneys for the state of Indiana have begun the formal appeal process after a Marion County court in July awarded a $52 million judgment to IBM over cancellation of the company’s contract to privatize social service claims processing.
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Lawmakers seek leader for 'interesting, challenging and unique' post

August 21, 2012
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana General Assembly has begun the search for a new executive director of the Legislative Services Agency.
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Tax judge declines to require attorneys represent LLCs in court

August 20, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Department of State Revenue asked the Indiana Tax Court to create a rule requiring limited liability companies be represented by attorneys in court, similar to a rule pertaining to corporations, but Judge Martha Wentworth declined to “invent such a rule where one does not currently exist.”
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DCS taking recommendations for members of child fatality review teams

August 14, 2012
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Department of Child Services has begun the process of establishing child fatality review teams across the state.
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Court issues injunction against BMV

August 13, 2012
Marilyn Odendahl
An Indianapolis single mother of six has had her driving privileges reinstated after a Marion Superior Court judge granted a preliminary injunction in a lawsuit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana and private counsel Scott DeVries against the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
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Struggles mount for labor

August 1, 2012
Dave Stafford
Indiana this year became the 23rd state to enact a right-to-work law in which workers cannot be compelled to pay union dues. Within months, individual workers in union shops opted out, even as court challenges linger.
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Ruling for IBM likely first act in legal epic

August 1, 2012
Dave Stafford
A ruling that ordered the state to pay more than $52 million to IBM due to cancellation of its contract to privatize social service claims processing certainly will have a second, and most likely a third, act.
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Summary judgment upheld in contamination case

July 30, 2012
Dave Stafford
The former owners of a Beech Grove shopping plaza that once contained a laundry and dry cleaning business that contaminated soil and groundwater cannot be held liable due to the statute of limitations, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled.
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State will appeal IBM ruling

July 18, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The state is going to appeal Wednesday’s decision in Marion Superior Court that it pay IBM $52 million for ending early its billion-dollar contract with the company to update the state’s welfare system.
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State must pay $52M over terminated welfare contract

July 18, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Marion Superior Judge David Dreyer has ordered the state to pay IBM an additional $12 million in early termination closeout payments and for equipment it retained after canceling a contract with IBM to implement a modernized welfare system. The judge previously ruled in January that the state was on the hook for $40 million in subcontractor assignment fees for terminating the contract.
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State to defend Planned Parenthood ban after adverse Medicaid recommendation

July 9, 2012
Dave Stafford
The Office of the Indiana Attorney General continues to defend a 2011 state law that denies Medicaid funding for health care services to Planned Parenthood because the organization performs abortions.  A federal hearing officer recommended that the Department of Health and Human Services disapprove the state Medicaid plan amendment in the law.
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High court ruling opens Medicaid escape hatch for states

July 4, 2012
J.K. Wall
While upholding President Barack Obama’s health care law, the U.S. Supreme Court on June 28 also opened an escape hatch for states that do not want to take on the project of expanding their Medicaid programs.
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High court ruling opens Medicaid escape hatch for states

June 28, 2012
J.K. Wall
While upholding President Barack Obama’s health care law, the U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday also opened an escape hatch for states that do not want to take on the project of expanding their Medicaid programs.
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NRC may dictate placement of pier

June 27, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
A family that owns property on Bass Lake failed to show that the Natural Resources Commission’s decision that the family must move its pier to accommodate the placement of a group pier was arbitrary and capricious, or unsupported by evidence, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled.
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Settlement adds $7.2 million for State Fair stage collapse victims

June 22, 2012
Dave Stafford
Two defendants in lawsuits over the Indiana State Fair stage collapse that killed seven and injured dozens have agreed to add $7.2 million to money the state has already distributed or appropriated, Attorney General Greg Zoeller announced Friday.
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ACLU of Indiana files proposed class action against BMV

June 22, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The ACLU of Indiana filed a lawsuit Wednesday in Marion County to require the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles to reinstate a woman’s suspended license. The ACLU of Indiana claims that the BMV randomly selected Lourrinne White from a “Previously Uninsured Motorist Registry” and suspended her license for not having insurance, even though she did not have a working car titled in her name at that time.
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COA reverses in favor of FSSA in provider payment dispute

June 8, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals held that a trial court erred in ruling in favor of health care providers regarding payments from the state’s Residential Care Assistance Program.
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Justices vacate review of voided tax warrants in 'puppy mill' case

May 18, 2012
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court on Tuesday vacated an order granting review in a case that concluded tax agencies and the Indiana attorney general’s office overstepped their authority by issuing jeopardy tax warrants to seize animals from an alleged puppy mill in Harrison County.
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COA affirms when interest on payments from state fund begins to accrue

May 3, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court ruling in a dispute over what interest rate is charged and when it begins to accrue on payments due from the Indiana Patient’s Compensation Fund to successful medical malpractice claimants.
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Former secretary of state suspended

April 26, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court suspended former Indiana Secretary of State Charlie White Wednesday because he was convicted of several felonies following a trial on voter fraud charges.
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Fighting to stay in shape

April 25, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
An Indianapolis attorney wins his division at the Indiana Golden Gloves.
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Department of Workforce Development scammed out of $2 million

April 19, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Department of Workforce Development announced Wednesday afternoon that it allegedly has been cheated out of $2.4 million in unemployment insurance benefits. Fifteen people have been indicted for allegedly scheming to use fake companies to claim benefits.
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COA rules in favor of DOC employee

March 29, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has found the trial court should have granted summary judgment to a Department of Correction employee on a man's claim that he was personally deprived a liberty interest when the DOC refused to remove his name from the sex offender registry.
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Governor names acting director of CJI

March 29, 2012
IL Staff
Gov. Mitch Daniels has appointed Mary L. Allen as acting director of the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute. She replaces Mark Massa, whom Daniels selected to join the Indiana Supreme Court.
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  1. For the record no one could answer the equal protection / substantive due process challenge I issued in the first post below. The lawless and accountable only to power bureaucrats never did either. All who interface with the Indiana law examiners or JLAP be warned.

  2. Hi there I really need help with getting my old divorce case back into court - I am still paying support on a 24 year old who has not been in school since age 16 - now living independent. My visitation with my 14 year old has never been modified; however, when convenient for her I can have him... I am paying past balance from over due support, yet earn several thousand dollars less. I would contact my original attorney but he basically molest me multiple times in Indy when I would visit.. Todd Woodmansee - I had just came out and had know idea what to do... I have heard he no longer practices. Please help1

  3. Yes diversity is so very important. With justice Rucker off ... the court is too white. Still too male. No Hispanic justice. No LGBT justice. And there are other checkboxes missing as well. This will not do. I say hold the seat until a physically handicapped Black Lesbian of Hispanic heritage and eastern religious creed with bipolar issues can be located. Perhaps an international search, with a preference for third world candidates, is indicated. A non English speaker would surely increase our diversity quotient!!!

  4. First, I want to thank Justice Rucker for his many years of public service, not just at the appellate court level for over 25 years, but also when he served the people of Lake County as a Deputy Prosecutor, City Attorney for Gary, IN, and in private practice in a smaller, highly diverse community with a history of serious economic challenges, ethnic tensions, and recently publicized but apparently long-standing environmental health risks to some of its poorest residents. Congratulations for having the dedication & courage to practice law in areas many in our state might have considered too dangerous or too poor at different points in time. It was also courageous to step into a prominent and highly visible position of public service & respect in the early 1990's, remaining in a position that left you open to state-wide public scrutiny (without any glitches) for over 25 years. Yes, Hoosiers of all backgrounds can take pride in your many years of public service. But people of color who watched your ascent to the highest levels of state government no doubt felt even more as you transcended some real & perhaps some perceived social, economic, academic and professional barriers. You were living proof that, with hard work, dedication & a spirit of public service, a person who shared their same skin tone or came from the same county they grew up in could achieve great success. At the same time, perhaps unknowingly, you helped fellow members of the judiciary, court staff, litigants and the public better understand that differences that are only skin-deep neither define nor limit a person's character, abilities or prospects in life. You also helped others appreciate that people of different races & backgrounds can live and work together peacefully & productively for the greater good of all. Those are truths that didn't have to be written down in court opinions. Anyone paying attention could see that truth lived out every day you devoted to public service. I believe you have been a "trailblazer" in Indiana's legal community and its judiciary. I also embrace your belief that society's needs can be better served when people in positions of governmental power reflect the many complexions of the population that they serve. Whether through greater understanding across the existing racial spectrum or through the removal of some real and some perceived color-based, hope-crushing barriers to life opportunities & success, movement toward a more reflective representation of the population being governed will lead to greater and uninterrupted respect for laws designed to protect all peoples' rights to life, liberty & the pursuit of happiness. Thanks again for a job well-done & for the inevitable positive impact your service has had - and will continue to have - on countless Hoosiers of all backgrounds & colors.

  5. Diversity is important, but with some limitations. For instance, diversity of experience is a great thing that can be very helpful in certain jobs or roles. Diversity of skin color is never important, ever, under any circumstance. To think that skin color changes one single thing about a person is patently racist and offensive. Likewise, diversity of values is useless. Some values are better than others. In the case of a supreme court justice, I actually think diversity is unimportant. The justices are not to impose their own beliefs on rulings, but need to apply the law to the facts in an objective manner.

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