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US House chops legal aid budget

June 4, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Budget cuts to legal aid funding approved June 3 by the U.S. House of Representatives could mean layoffs and office closures nationwide.
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Panel splits over interpretation of corrupt business influence statute

June 4, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The majority on a Court of Appeals panel tossed out a man’s corrupt business influence conviction after finding his criminal activity did not pose a threat of future criminal conduct. But the dissenting judge noted the majority was inserting a new element into the Indiana statute that does not exist.
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Judge to allow recordings from Indy blast at trial

June 4, 2015
 Associated Press
The judge hearing the trial of a man charged in an Indianapolis house explosion says he'll allow prosecutors to present an audio recording of the screams of a man who initially survived the blast before dying.
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Developer proposes revised plan for Indy criminal justice center

June 4, 2015
IBJ Staff
The partnership that wants to develop a criminal justice center in Indianapolis has proposed a slightly scaled-down version in hopes of resurrecting the project.
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Whitestown likely to appeal Zionsville case to Supreme Court

June 4, 2015
Lindsey Erdody
A ruling from the Indiana Court of Appeals allowing Zionsville to merge with Perry Township is likely to be challenged before the state Supreme Court.
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Tax Court orders more proceedings on sale of racetrack and card club

June 3, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Department of State Revenue scored a partial victory in Tax Court on Wednesday when the court granted the agency's motion for summary judgment regarding whether I.C. 6-3-2-2.2 applied in its taxing of a portion of the gain generated by a Las Vegas-based corporation's sale of a horse racetrack and card club to an out-of-state company. But there are issues of genuine material fact as to whether the department correctly classified Pinnacle Entertainment's gain as business income.
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Inconsistency by trial court leads to partial reversal

June 3, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
Because a trial court hearing a child support matter at first declined to impute the income of the stepfather to the child's mother, but later treated their income as the same when it came to the cost of her child's health insurance, the Indiana Court of Appeals partially reversed a Hamilton Superior Court's 2014 ruling.
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Legislature continues support of We the People program

June 3, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Indiana's We the People program, a civics education curriculum that teaches elementary, middle and high school students about U.S. history and government, has received another round of funding from the Statehouse.
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Justices: Adoption agency didn’t breach duty to couple

June 3, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
The Indiana Supreme Court ruled 4-1 in favor of an adoption agency that it did not have any duties with respect to the putative father registry in excess of statutory requirements. A couple who adopted a baby through the agency – only later to have her removed from their care after the biological father contested the adoption – sued the agency alleging negligence.
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AG may appeal death penalty reversal in deputy’s slaying

June 3, 2015
IL Staff
The state is considering whether it will appeal a federal court ruling Tuesday that reversed the death penalty imposed on a man convicted of killing a Morgan County deputy sheriff nearly 14 years ago.
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Appeals court sides with EPA on air pollution limits

June 3, 2015
 Associated Press
A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that the Environmental Protection Agency complied with the law in deciding which areas of the country failed to meet federal limits on smog-forming pollution that can cause asthma and respiratory illness.
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NCAA's top lawyer ready to keep fighting in O'Bannon case

June 3, 2015
 Associated Press
Donald Remy has an answer for those who believe the NCAA is waging a losing battle against Ed O'Bannon: Think again.
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Supreme Court pulls plug on audio-video transcript pilot project

June 3, 2015
Dave Stafford
Transcripts generated by video cameras have had their day in court in Indiana. The verdict is in favor of keeping paper records.
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Criminal defense attorney Robert Hammerle joins Pence Hensel

June 3, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Between them, the three defense attorneys have handled a range of cases from murder and the death penalty to fraud, civil business litigation and even treason. But on a recent morning, the trio of legal minds was gathered around the conference room table discussing the most pressing matter of that day – office furniture.
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Legislative Council assigns topics to summer committees

June 3, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Although a study to determine the appropriate number of courts in Pulaski County was not assigned to a summer interim committee, the Indiana Legislature may not be finished with making reductions in some state courts.
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Making room for the millennials

June 3, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
The new generation of lawyers embraces technology and collaboration.
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Abrams: Engage with professionals to discover opportunities

June 3, 2015
Jeffrey Abrams
I would encourage recent law school graduates to remain optimistic, work hard and network with as many attorneys as you can find since you never know when the next law firm or employer will need to hire a recent graduate.
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Meeting clients in cyberspace

June 3, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Twenty-five years ago, people needing legal help either met with an attorney face-to-face or made a phone call. Person-to-person, they explained their problems and made up their minds if the lawyer had the answers. Today, when picking a lawyer, clients first visit the Internet.
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Notre Dame mock trial team rallies, excels after death of coach

June 3, 2015
Dave Stafford
Dawson Robinson remembers getting the shocking news that his mock trial coach, mentor and friend Drew Haase had died at age 31. Haase died on April 1, just 16 days before his beloved Fighting Irish were to make their first appearance in five years at the American Mock Trial Association national championship tournament.
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Supreme Court appoints team to look at pro se litigant problems

June 3, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Less than two years after appointing a commission to expand civil legal services for the indigent, the Indiana Supreme Court has assembled another group to examine the nagging problems caused by pro se litigants.
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Federal Bar Update: Removing state-court actions to federal court

June 3, 2015
John Maley
Removal of state-court actions to federal court has provided a seemingly never-ending source of procedural disputes. Fortunately many of those mind-numbing issues have been resolved in the last several years by Congress and the courts, with the Supreme Court of the United States addressing one key issue recently.
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Abeska: St. Joseph County Bar Foundation is hitting its stride

June 3, 2015
The St. Joseph County Bar Foundation's philanthropic efforts are made possible by support from attorneys and law firms, though fundraising remains a challenge for the board.
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Quick: How to get noticed by the media

June 3, 2015
Swallow your pride. Sometimes the media doesn’t believe your law firm is as important as you do.
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New laws shelter attorneys-in-fact from liability in settling estates

June 3, 2015
Dave Stafford
How long heirs have to initiate an action arising from an attorney-in-fact’s final accounting of an estate has been an open question in Indiana, but a recent change in state law settles it. Mostly.
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Open House: Connor Reporting moves up

June 3, 2015
Dave Stafford
Indiana Lawyer is launching an occasional series in this issue titled “Open House.” In it, we will feature law firms, legal service providers, and other law-related entities that have undergone a redesign of their office to improve flow and function or that have repurposed a building or space to fit the needs of today’s legal providers. This issue features Connor Reporting.
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  1. Hmmmmm ..... How does the good doctor's spells work on tyrants and unelected bureacrats with nearly unchecked power employing in closed hearings employing ad hoc procedures? Just askin'. ... Happy independence day to any and all out there who are "free" ... Unlike me.

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  3. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  4. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  5. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

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