Courts

Lake County investigating unreported driving suspensions

May 19, 2016
 Associated Press
Prosecutors in northwest Indiana are investigating whether a former Lake Station city clerk intentionally failed to send convictions in drunken driving cases to the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
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Coal mine environmental risk grows with bankruptcies

May 19, 2016
 Associated Press
As more coal companies file for bankruptcy, it's increasingly likely taxpayers will be stuck with the very high costs of preventing abandoned mines from becoming environmental disasters.
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Supreme Court disbars South Bend lawyer

May 19, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Supreme Court issued a disbarment decision Wednesday finding Elton Johnson committed attorney misconduct in a number of ways. The per curiam decision lists incompetent representation, converting client funds and failing to cooperate with the disciplinary process as reasons for Johnson's disbarment.
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Ex-credit union chief loses defamation per se appeal

May 18, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment for an employer after the president of a company was fired over an executive's hotline call. The president claimed defamation per se and considered the hotline company liable, but the COA ruled comments made during the call were not defamatory.
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COA reinstates ex-boyfriend's complaint for damages

May 18, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals found a man's complaints for compensation against his girlfriend for work he did on two houses, including a house they both lived in, should not have been dismissed. The case was remanded to the trial court.
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US backs Syrian refugees against Pence at 7th Circuit

May 18, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Department of Justice is urging the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago to affirm an Indianapolis district court judge’s ruling that blocked Gov. Mike Pence’s directive to suspend federal aid to Syrian refugees resettled in Indiana.
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COA: Search under probation did not violate Fourth Amendment

May 18, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals found a warrantless search of property did not violate a man's Fourth Amendment and Indiana Constitutional rights and upheld the denial of his motion to suppress evidence after he was convicted of two methamphetamine counts.
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COA upholds conviction, trims sentence in heroin case

May 18, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a man's conviction but reduced his sentence for dealing heroin even though he didn't actually participate in the transaction in one of the counts.
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Judge dismisses sludge lawsuit against Terre Haute

May 18, 2016
 Associated Press
A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit that alleged the city of Terre Haute and its officials defaulted on an agreement to take out water from waste and use the sludge to make fuel.
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Teen courts across northwest Indiana dole out justice

May 18, 2016
 Associated Press
The Teen Court program in Lake County, along with others in northwest Indiana, gives teens an alternative to the traditional trajectory of juvenile justice. The program uses a novel approach in which a jury of teens decides the punishment for peers who are diverted from the juvenile justice system.
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Slaughter moves from arguing high-profile cases to judging them

May 18, 2016
Dave Stafford
New Indiana Supreme Court Justice Geoffrey Slaughter brings an impressive resume and a wealth of experience, but he acknowledges a couple of learning curves ahead.
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Surgery centers sue No.1 insurer UnitedHealthcare

May 18, 2016
Dave Stafford
Several Indiana surgery centers are suing the nation's largest health insurance company, claiming it violated state and federal law by failing to pay for services the centers' doctors provided to patients. In a similar lawsuit against the insurer, a key dispute is what the word "pay" means.
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Statewide crisis of CHINS stretches judicial resources

May 18, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
The increase in filings of juvenile children in need of services petitions across the state has been growing steadily since 2011 but ballooned to 14,227 in 2014 and could likely top 17,500 for 2015.
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Rucker likely to leave Supreme Court in 2017

May 18, 2016
Dave Stafford
Justice Robert Rucker, a Gary native appointed to the court by Democratic Gov. Frank O'Bannon in 1999, will turn 70 in January. Rucker informally has informed lawyers and judges he intends to retire from the court sometime next year in order to begin a dialog among those who may consider serving on the court.
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Disciplinary Actions - 5/18/2016

May 18, 2016
IL Staff
Read who resigned and who the Indiana Supreme Court recently suspended.
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Indiana Supreme Court establishes new committee for civil legal aid

May 17, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
In an amendment to the Indiana Rules of Professional Conduct, the Indiana Supreme Court is revamping its response to civil legal aid.
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2 at IPS accused of not reporting sex abuse get diversion

May 17, 2016
 Associated Press
Two Indianapolis Public Schools officials charged with not immediately notifying authorities of sexual abuse allegations against a former counselor have agreed to enter pretrial diversion programs.
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7th Circuit: Man not eligible for sentence reduction

May 17, 2016
Scott Roberts
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a prisoner is not subject to a sentencing reduction after it ruled an amendment that decreased the recommended penalties for the crimes he committed did not allow for a reduction.
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Insurer who paid wrong party doesn’t have to pay correct one

May 17, 2016
Scott Roberts

The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed summary judgment for an insurance company that acknowledged paying a death benefit to the wrong party but successfully argued that the proper recipient waived its right to the proceeds by allowing the wrong party to claim the money.

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COA: Evidence obtained during welfare check is admissible

May 17, 2016
Scott Roberts

The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled evidence from a search where police officers went into a house without a warrant to check on the children was valid evidence at trial and affirmed denial of a woman’s motion to suppress.

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Donnelly, Coats pleased nomination hearing set for Ong

May 16, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
Indiana Senators Joe Donnelly and Dan Coats are applauding the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee's decision to consider the nomination of Hoosier Winfield D. Ong for the federal bench.
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Appraiser has no duty of care to real estate seller

May 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled an appraiser has no duty of care to a seller after he appraised a house for much less than the proposed purchase price. The COA upheld summary judgment for the appraiser in a case where the seller alleged negligence, fraud and slander of title.
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Justices deadlock 2-2 on transfer in two cases

May 16, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Supreme Court deadlocked on one case after oral arguments and denied transfer to another after a 2-2 vote in the court's list of transfer dispositions for the week ending May 13. The split vote in the absence of a fifth justice reinstates rulings of the Indiana Court of Appeals.
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Justices give win to Internet site in false data case

May 16, 2016
 Associated Press
The Supreme Court says an Internet search site that posted false information about people can be sued only if the errors caused actual harm.
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High court sides with Ohio in debt collection dispute

May 16, 2016
 Associated Press
A unanimous Supreme Court says a pair of Ohio law firms did not use illegal tactics when they sent out debt-collection letters on stationery bearing the name of the state attorney general.
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  1. CCHP's real accomplishment is the 2015 law signed by Gov Pence that basically outlaws any annexation that is forced where a 65% majority of landowners in the affected area disagree. Regardless of whether HP wins or loses, the citizens of Indiana will not have another fiasco like this. The law Gov Pence signed is a direct result of this malgovernance.

  2. I gave tempparry guardship to a friend of my granddaughter in 2012. I went to prison. I had custody. My daughter went to prison to. We are out. My daughter gave me custody but can get her back. She was not order to give me custody . but now we want granddaughter back from friend. She's 14 now. What rights do we have

  3. This sure is not what most who value good governance consider the Rule of Law to entail: "In a letter dated March 2, which Brizzi forwarded to IBJ, the commission dismissed the grievance “on grounds that there is not reasonable cause to believe that you are guilty of misconduct.”" Yet two month later reasonable cause does exist? (Or is the commission forging ahead, the need for reasonable belief be damned? -- A seeming violation of the Rules of Profession Ethics on the part of the commission) Could the rule of law theory cause one to believe that an explanation is in order? Could it be that Hoosier attorneys live under Imperial Law (which is also a t-word that rhymes with infamy) in which the Platonic guardians can do no wrong and never owe the plebeian class any explanation for their powerful actions. (Might makes it right?) Could this be a case of politics directing the commission, as celebrated IU Mauer Professor (the late) Patrick Baude warned was happening 20 years ago in his controversial (whisteblowing) ethics lecture on a quite similar topic: http://www.repository.law.indiana.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1498&context=ilj

  4. I have a case presently pending cert review before the SCOTUS that reveals just how Indiana regulates the bar. I have been denied licensure for life for holding the wrong views and questioning the grand inquisitors as to their duties as to state and federal constitutional due process. True story: https://www.scribd.com/doc/299040839/2016Petitionforcert-to-SCOTUS Shorter, Amici brief serving to frame issue as misuse of govt licensure: https://www.scribd.com/doc/312841269/Thomas-More-Society-Amicus-Brown-v-Ind-Bd-of-Law-Examiners

  5. Here's an idea...how about we MORE heavily regulate the law schools to reduce the surplus of graduates, driving starting salaries up for those new grads, so that we can all pay our insane amount of student loans off in a reasonable amount of time and then be able to afford to do pro bono & low-fee work? I've got friends in other industries, radiology for example, and their schools accept a very limited number of students so there will never be a glut of new grads and everyone's pay stays high. For example, my radiologist friend's school accepted just six new students per year.

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