Courts

Majority reverses conviction based on meth manufacturing

April 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
A divided Indiana Court of Appeals has determined that the state can’t use the amount of manufacturing materials and empty packets of ingredients at a person’s home to prove he was dealing in that substance, without clear evidence the drug would have been produced in that amount.
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Northern District seeks magistrate in Hammond

April 5, 2012
IL Staff
The Judicial Conference of the United States has authorized the appointment of a full-time magistrate judge for the Northern District of Indiana in Hammond. Applications are being accepted for the position.
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Court preserves woman's day in court despite delays

April 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has reversed a trial judge’s order to dismiss a woman’s medical malpractice case because of her failure to comply with discovery deadlines and trial rules, finding that the decision to deny her a day in court was too harsh.
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Panel disagrees on foreclosure settlement resolution

April 5, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled that federal law and housing regulations require that deeds in lieu of foreclosure release the borrower from any mortgage obligation, and the mortgage company issuing an agreement can use that federal language in the contract.
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Summary judgment affirmed in favor of attorney

April 5, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
An attorney who withdrew as counsel for two related family-owned businesses did not make false and defamatory statements in explaining his withdrawal, the Indiana Court of Appeals held.
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COA holds false customer review violates no-contact order

April 5, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed a trial court’s revocation of probation for a man who wrote a false review of his father’s cleaning company.
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Judges affirm decision in speedy trial claim

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
A Hendricks County judge did not err in denying a man’s motion that his criminal case be discharged because the state failed to conduct a speedy trial within one year of charges being filed, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled.
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Court rules on estate's claim against insurer

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a judge’s ruling against a California reciprocal insurance exchange in a dispute over whether the insurer would have to pay part of a million dollar judgment.
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Court upholds child molester's no-contact condition

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled that a man convicted of two child molesting counts didn’t have his constitutional rights violated because no double jeopardy violation occurred, and the trial judge’s probation condition that he have no contact with anyone younger than 18 is constitutional.
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Trial rules require sufficient postage

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has a simple message for litigants: if you are filing anything by certified mail, make sure to put enough postage on your paperwork. Otherwise, don’t expect to use that insufficient postage as an excuse to get around trial rules and court deadlines.
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Appellate court rules on bona fide purchaser dispute

April 4, 2012
Michael Hoskins
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld a ruling by a Marion Superior judge in a land title case, finding that a bona fide property purchaser can not be held responsible for deficiencies in the court record that led to the underlying dispute.
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Court of Appeals revises robbery sentence

April 3, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has ordered that a man’s robbery sentence be reduced because that conviction and sentence were not allowed due to double jeopardy. The man’s sentence for murder, robbery and rape dropped from 160 years to 130 years.
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4 charged after investigation of ballot petition case

April 3, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Four people in St. Joseph County have been charged following an investigation into whether signatures were forged on an election ballot petition for president in the 2008 Indiana primary election. A special prosecutor has been assigned to the cases.
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Volunteer attorneys sought for teen court

April 3, 2012
IL Staff
Evansville’s Youth Resources is seeking volunteer attorneys to assist in its Teen Court. The court is an early intervention/diversion program in the Vanderburgh County Juvenile Justice System for first-time youth offenders ages 10 through 17.
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Judges order another look at whether woman qualifies for disability

April 2, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has found that an administrative law judge failed to properly assess a woman’s residual functional capacity in deciding whether she qualified for disability insurance benefits from the Social Security Administration. The judges ordered the case back to the agency for further proceedings.
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Judges affirm part of sentence, reverse enhancements on double jeopardy grounds

March 30, 2012
Jenny Montgomery
A woman whose dogs attacked and injured two people failed to prove that the evidence was insufficient to support her convictions. But the Court of Appeals agreed that a portion of her overall sentence should be vacated based on double jeopardy grounds.
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Judges uphold original decision in Clark County surveyor's suit

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals granted the former Clark County surveyor’s request for a rehearing on its decision regarding his involvement in two county projects, but found his assertions on rehearing are without merit.
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Trial court erred in modifying custody in favor of father

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court’s decision to grant a father’s motion to modify custody and prevent his ex-wife from relocating with their son was clearly erroneous, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded in reversing the decision. The lower court ruling virtually ignored the immense benefit the mother’s new position in Tennessee would bring to her and her son.
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Judges rule in favor of homeowner

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
A trial court did not err when it found in favor of a homeowner on his breach of contract claim against the contractor he hired to repair his clay tile roof following a storm, the Indiana Court of Appeals concluded.
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Judges: Couple lacked standing to challenge road closure

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals ruled that a trial court properly dismissed a couple’s complaint over the closure of an access road into cemetery where their daughter is buried.
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Home improvement contract enforceable

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
Even though a restoration company’s contract with a homeowner did not satisfy the requirements of the Home Improvement Contracts Act, that did not automatically render the contract void, the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled. The judges reversed judgment in favor of the homeowner and ordered he pay the company for the work it performed.
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COA affirms judgment for bank in replevin action

March 30, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals has upheld summary judgment for a bank in its attempt to repossess a motorcycle, finding that while the purchasers of the motorcycle had an interest in it, their interest was not superior to the bank’s perfect security interest.
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PACER fees increase Sunday

March 30, 2012
IL Staff
The fee for electronic public access through the Public Access to Court Electronic Records System increases to 10 cents per page April 1.
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COA adopts Restatement (Third) of Torts Section 14

March 29, 2012
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court in concluding a new trial is warranted to determine allocation of fault in a man’s murder. At issue is the percentage of fault to allocate to a criminal defendant and his former employer.
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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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