Opinion

Hammerle On… 'Still Alice,' 'Fifty Shades of Grey'

February 25, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle says Julianne Moore's performance in "Still Alice" won an Oscar for a role you will never forget.
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Foos: Forget the next big thing; focus on your existing technology

February 11, 2015
What we often forget is that the focus of legal-based technology is to increase the productivity of attorneys, paralegals and administrative staff. We’re focused on the next big thing when we should be identifying how to customize our existing technology to save time and increase productivity.
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Lucas: Looking back, looking ahead, and saying thanks

February 11, 2015
Kelly Lucas
The dramatic changes that our world has experienced, and the impact those changes have had on the practice of law, has produced a fertile supply of topics to address over the years.
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Indiana Judges Association: Law, time and judgment are shared responsibilities

February 11, 2015
David Dreyer
When New York City claimed 20-30 inches of snow were coming (and got less than 10), I was reminded of so many lawyers who claim three days for their case (but only use one). All of us on the bench or bar tailor our talents toward forming our best judgments. Such a responsibility necessarily includes the talented due consideration of time.
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Lundberg: The importance of preserving the attorney-client privilege

February 11, 2015
The dispute between former Indiana University Purdue-Fort Wayne Chancellor Michael Wartell and Purdue University has attracted much media attention – some of it wondering why Purdue would fight so hard to protect its claim that a lawyer-investigator’s report was protected by the attorney-client privilege and should not be released.
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BGBC: Don’t get duped. Test your fraud skills

February 11, 2015
Do you think you are too smart to be duped by a fraudster? Have you been paying attention to our fraud articles? The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners estimates that the typical organization loses 5 percent of its annual revenue to fraud. Test your knowledge on fraud by taking this 10-question quiz.
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Neutral Corner: Use of mediator’s proposal should be a last resort

February 11, 2015
John Van Winkle
Mediation got an early and strong foothold in California in the late 1980s and that state has been an incubation site for several trends in the mediation process – some good, some bad and some perhaps a little ugly.
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Hammerle makes his 2015 Oscar picks

February 11, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Let me again venture out on a limb and make my Academy Awards picks. Of course, I will likely be wrong, but never in my cinematic heart.
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Riggins: The effects of Obama’s immigration executive actions

January 28, 2015
Wandini Riggins
A debate is being waged regarding the effects of the executive actions. Proponents tout ameliorative socioeconomic effects, while opponents decry a thinly veiled grant of amnesty. In this landscape, it is important to understand the intent and effect of the executive actions.
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Federal Bar Update: Southern District's uniform protective order

January 28, 2015
John Maley
Throughout 2014, a subcommittee of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana’s Local Rules Committee, including Magistrate Judges Denise LaRue and Debra McVicker Lynch, was hard at work on a proposed uniform protective order.
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Making Rain: Business strategies for in 2015

January 28, 2015
Dona Stohler
The beginning of a new year always seems like a good time to look at what’s working and what’s not in terms of your business development strategies.
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Hammerle on … 'Selma,' 'American Sniper'

January 28, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle says the strength of "Selma" flows from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s relationship with his wife and President Lyndon Johnson.
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Zoeller: Use depositions over interrogatories in family law matters

January 14, 2015
We’ve all received the responses to interrogatories so doctored by opposing counsel there is virtually no substance, or so littered with objections and qualifications that the answer is meaningless. So for many years my solution to this problem has been to take depositions. I will outline a few of the reasons more family law practitioners should do the same.
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Letter responds to commentary on Resnover execution

January 14, 2015
Members of Gregory Resnover's defense team respond to commentary written by a former employee in attorney general's office at the time of Resnover's execution in 1994.
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Bell: 3 things to know about the ethics of interviewing witnesses

January 14, 2015
James Bell
January brings frigid temperatures, snow and icy roads. In other words, it is a perfect time for you to knock on doors and conduct a field investigation. But before you put your coat on and head out to find that needle-in-a-haystack witness who will save your case, remember that there are ethical rules regarding how you deal with witnesses.
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Living Fit: Aerobic exercise or resistance exercise?

January 14, 2015
Sharon McGoff
The hard-core cardio junkies swear by aerobic exercise as the best way to lose weight, get fit and remain lean. Yet, those who are diehard weightlifters or yoga and Pilates fanatics claim that resistance exercise is the only way to lose weight and become strong and lean. What’s the answer?
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Hammerle On… 'The Imitation Game,' 'Into the Woods'

January 14, 2015
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle says that "The Imitation Game" is one of the best films of 2014.
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INBOX: Lawyers question use of qualified immunity for police

December 31, 2014
Attorneys from an Indianapolis law firm suggest lifting qualified immunity, the shield that protects police officers' actions.
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Quick: Start the new year with a ‘firm’ marketing plan

December 31, 2014
Jon Quick offers tips for firms to consider when creating an effective marketing plan.
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Commentary: Lawyer recounts work on Resnover death penalty case

December 31, 2014
Attorney David Hurley writes about his work for the state on the Gregory Resnover execution. Resnover was put to death by electrocution in 1994.
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Hammerle on...'Top Five,' 'The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies'

December 31, 2014
Robert Hammerle
Bob Hammerle says a tearful goodbye to the "Hobbit" series.
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Inside the Criminal Case: Grand juries in Indiana shrouded by law

December 17, 2014
James Bell, K. Michael Gaerte
The effectiveness of grand juries has been in the news lately. In one case, a Missouri grand jury failed to indict a police officer in a case involving the death of an unarmed suspect. When inconsistent testimony was raised as a possible justification for this result, many opined that police needed to carry body cameras. However, approximately a week later, a New York grand jury failed to indict another police officer involved in the death of an unarmed suspect where the officer’s interactions with the suspect were caught on a cellphone video. This led lawyers and non-lawyers alike to wonder what happens behind the closed doors of grand juries. This article speaks to how grand juries are used in Indiana.
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Federal Bar Update: End-of-year tweaks to federal court rules

December 17, 2014
John Maley
John Maley takes a look at rule changes in federal courts and reminds attorneys that the rule on Statement of the Facts has been deleted.
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Gallagher: Recent Supreme Court rulings could help end patent trolls

December 17, 2014
There have been recent efforts in Congress and state legislatures to address the issue of so-called patent trolls, also known as patent assertion entities. This year, at least three of the six patent-related decisions by the Supreme Court of the United States have been widely regarded as impacting PAE activity. Although these decisions are only six months old, they appear to be on a path to help curb these unwanted lawsuits.
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White: Say ‘I do’ to IP due diligence in business transactions

December 17, 2014
Intellectual property is one of the most valuable and important assets of any consumer products, life sciences or technology driven company. Despite the inherent value associated with these intangible assets, IP rights are often overlooked or are only cursorily evaluated when a company is embroiled in a business transaction (such as a merger or an acquisition).
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  4. 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.

  5. 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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