Legal News

Homeowner can be liable for party injuries resulting in death, but not for furnishing alcohol

October 26, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court held Wednesday that a woman whose party guest died at her home after a drunken brawl could be considered negligent because she did not seek care for the guest, but not on the basis of supplying alcohol to the men involved in the fight.
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IN Supreme Court holds that bar shooting was not foreseeable

October 26, 2016
Olivia Covington
After deciding that foreseeability in the context of duty in a negligence case is different than in the context of proximate cause, the Indiana Supreme Court held Wednesday that a Grant County bar was not negligent in a shooting that injured three people because the shooting was not foreseeable.
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Supreme Court upholds burglar’s sentence, rejects COA assessment of appellate argument

October 25, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court affirmed Tuesday a burglar’s felony conviction and sentence, but also rejected a harsh Court of Appeals assessment of the his argument appealing his sentence.
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7th Circuit upholds drug offender’s conviction, vacates life sentence

October 25, 2016
Olivia Covington
A man convicted of multiple drug offenses and sentenced to a life term in prison will soon receive a new sentence after the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated it on Tuesday.
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Indiana Supreme Court upholds decision granting convicted felon’s motion for relief

October 25, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court will allow a convicted felon to bring his case for post-conviction relief back to court to be heard on the merits after finding that his motion for relief was filed in a timely manner, despite a seven-year delay.
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Justices dismiss misconduct charge against White County deputy prosecutor

October 25, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Supreme Court has entered judgment in favor of a White County attorney after finding that the state Supreme Court Disciplinary Commission failed to prove that the attorney had violated a rule of professional conduct, resulting in a man’s erroneous convictions of child molestation.
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Planned Parenthood asks judge to strike abortion law

October 25, 2016
Dave Stafford
Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky has asked a federal judge to throw out abortion restrictions signed this year by Gov. Mike Pence that were blocked from taking effect July 1.
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Appeals court rules that DCS employee can proceed with caseload claims

October 25, 2016
Olivia Covington
An employee of the Department of Child Services can continue in her complaint that alleges violations of the state-mandated caseload maximums despite a ruling that the employee has no private right of action under Indiana Code.
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COA reaffirms decision in church breach of contract case

October 25, 2016
Olivia Covington
The Indiana Court of Appeals granted a church’s petition to rehear its breach of contract case and reaffirmed its previous ruling that the church had failed to carry out the terms of the lease in question.
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State appeals judgment for deaf litigant denied interpreter

October 25, 2016
IL Staff
The state of Indiana is appealing a federal court ruling that a deaf Indianapolis man was discriminated against when he was denied an interpreter for a court-ordered mediation session in his child custody case.
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Nurse who survived Ebola settles with Texas hospital system

October 25, 2016
 Associated Press
A nurse who contracted Ebola two years ago while caring for the first person to be diagnosed in the U.S. with the deadly disease settled a lawsuit Monday against the parent company of the Dallas hospital where she worked.
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Wild West court for patent ‘trolls’ may be tamed

October 25, 2016
 Bloomberg News
Apple Inc. and Dell Inc. found an unlikely ally when they were sued over a patent for camera technology in a courthouse that has a reputation for siding against big companies in such fights: the judge.
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Kagan: Supreme Court gender diversity positive sign to youth

October 25, 2016
 Associated Press
Gender diversity on the U.S. Supreme Court sends a positive message to young girls and boys, who hear "women's voices coming from all over the place" as the three female justices join in asking questions during oral arguments, Justice Elena Kagan said Monday.
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Huntington Superior Court judge resigns

October 25, 2016
IL Staff
Judge Jeffrey R. Heffelfinger has announced his resignation from the Huntington Superior Court, effective Saturday, four years before his term is set to expire.
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Short-handed Supreme Court delays action in 3 cases

October 24, 2016
 Associated Press
The U.S. Supreme Court is offering new evidence that the short-handed court is having trouble getting its work done.
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Prosecutors push back against new bail rule

October 24, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
The Indiana Prosecuting Attorneys Council has come out against Indiana Criminal Procedure Rule 26, which sets parameters for the use of bail as a condition of release from incarceration.
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Indiana Supreme Court grants transfer in injured immigrant worker's case

October 24, 2016
IL Staff
The Indiana Supreme Court will decide if an undocumented Mexican immigrant who was injured on the job in Indiana should receive compensation based on wages for his job in the United States or based on wages for the same job in Mexico.
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2 more counties switch to e-filing

October 24, 2016
IL Staff
Two more Indiana counties have made the switch to electronic case filings in the last week, bringing the total number of participating counties up to 20.
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Report: Indiana fails to provide consistent indigent defense

October 24, 2016
Dave Stafford
Indiana is failing to equally provide constitutionally guaranteed effective counsel to indigent people accused of misdemeanor, felony and juvenile offenses, according to a report released Monday. In some counties, poor people facing criminal charges are encouraged to negotiate directly with prosecutors before being appointed counsel.
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Man who broke officer's jaw gets 30-year sentence

October 24, 2016
 Associated Press
A southern Indiana man convicted of punching a jail officer so hard it broke his jaw in three places has been sentenced to 30 years in prison.
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Posting a ballot selfie? Check your state laws first

October 24, 2016
 Associated Press
While secrecy in the voting booth has become a thing of the past for those ready to share their views and daily lives on social media, laws nationwide are mixed on whether voters are allowed to take pictures of themselves in the act or of their ballots — "ballot selfies".
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Evansville groups giving domestic violence survivors a voice

October 24, 2016
 Associated Press
Domestic violence affects more than 10 million people a year in the U.S., but almost half of those incidents go unreported. Organizations such as the Evansville YWCA and Albion Fellows Bacon Center are hosting programs throughout October — domestic violence awareness month — to encourage reporting domestic abuse.
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Southern District seeking public comment on proposed rule amendments

October 21, 2016
IL Staff
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana has opened a period of public comment on amendments to certain local rules.
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Stanley ruling extends to government medical reimbursements

October 21, 2016
Dave Stafford
The Indiana Supreme Court on Friday extended the admission of evidence of reduced health care payments in personal injury suits to include reimbursements from government payers.
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Suspended lawyer ‘cannot take no for an answer,’ must pay sanctions

October 21, 2016
Dave Stafford
A suspended Gary lawyer continues to pursue cases that federal judges have ruled frivolous, and a judge in Hammond this week rejected his claim that he couldn’t afford to pay a $500 sanction imposed in one of the cases.
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  1. Where may I find an attorney working Pro Bono? Many issues with divorce, my Disability, distribution of IRA's, property, money's and pressured into agreement by my attorney. Leaving me far less than 5% of all after 15 years of marriage. No money to appeal, disabled living on disability income. Attorney's decision brought forward to judge, no evidence ever to finalize divorce. Just 2 weeks ago. Please help.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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!!!

  5. 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.

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