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Magistrate, attorney general bills become law

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Magistrates can now be certified as senior judges, and the parents who don't pay ordered child support but gamble at casinos can have their winnings withheld. Those are just two of the many bills Gov. Mitch Daniels has signed into law.

The Indiana General Assembly ended its 2010 session March 13, with the fate of the surviving bills in the hands of the governor. As of Indiana Lawyer deadline, Gov. Daniels had 98 bills before him and signed into law March 12 many of interest to the legal community including:

- Senate Enrolled Act 36 allowing magistrates who meet certain criteria to be certified as senior judges;

- SEA 65 on guardianships, estate administration, trust matters, and wills;

- SEA 394 that allows the attorney general to intervene in a declaratory judgment action which alleges a statute or ordinance to be unconstitutional, and to file a friend-of-the court brief without leave of the court; and

- House Enrolled Act 1350, which enacts the Uniform Interstate Depositions and Discovery Act.

On March 17, the governor signed SEA 163, a child support bill that includes a provision garnishing casino winnings of parents who owe child support.

Also signed Wednesday were HEA 1044 regarding clerk liability; HEA 1062 enacting the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act; HEA 1154 about Marion County courts; and HEA 1193, which creates the law enforcement, school policing and youth work group.

The governor signed SEA 307 regarding Floyd County courts and HEA 1234 addressing criminal procedures and controlled substances Thursday. Many bills have yet to reach the governor's desk for signature, including HEA 1271 on problem-solving courts and SEA 224, which details how registered sex and violent offenders can have their names removed from the registry if they meet certain requirements.

One piece of legislation the governor won't see is Senate Bill 149, which dealt with Department of Child Services matters. The bill died in conference committee because the language would have reverted back to allowing the courts to decide whether to send juveniles to out-of-state placements. Last-minute revisions at the end of the 2009 special session allowed for DCS to make that decision. Rep. Dennis Avery, D-Evansville, said he heard Senate leadership was supporting the administration and felt the placement revision was an attempt to embarrass the DCS and Director James Payne.

Many enrolled acts have yet to reach the governor's desk for signature or have signing deadlines past IL deadline. The governor has seven days to sign legislation once he receives it. If he chooses not to sign it, it becomes law on the eighth day unless he vetoes it. Visit the governor's Web site to the check the status of bills awaiting his signature.

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  1. I like the concept. Seems like a good idea and really inexpensive to manage.

  2. I don't agree that this is an extreme case. There are more of these people than you realize - people that are vindictive and/or with psychological issues have clogged the system with baseless suits that are costly to the defendant and to taxpayers. Restricting repeat offenders from further abusing the system is not akin to restricting their freedon, but to protecting their victims, and the court system, from allowing them unfettered access. From the Supreme Court opinion "he has burdened the opposing party and the courts of this state at every level with massive, confusing, disorganized, defective, repetitive, and often meritless filings."

  3. So, if you cry wolf one too many times courts may "restrict" your ability to pursue legal action? Also, why is document production equated with wealth? Anyone can "produce probably tens of thousands of pages of filings" if they have a public library card. I understand this is an extreme case, but our Supreme Court really got this one wrong.

  4. He called our nation a nation of cowards because we didn't want to talk about race. That was a cheap shot coming from the top cop. The man who decides who gets the federal government indicts. Wow. Not a gentleman if that is the measure. More importantly, this insult delivered as we all understand, to white people-- without him or anybody needing to explain that is precisely what he meant-- but this is an insult to timid white persons who fear the government and don't want to say anything about race for fear of being accused a racist. With all the legal heat that can come down on somebody if they say something which can be construed by a prosecutor like Mr Holder as racist, is it any wonder white people-- that's who he meant obviously-- is there any surprise that white people don't want to talk about race? And as lawyers we have even less freedom lest our remarks be considered violations of the rules. Mr Holder also demonstrated his bias by publically visiting with the family of the young man who was killed by a police offering in the line of duty, which was a very strong indicator of bias agains the offer who is under investigation, and was a failure to lead properly by letting his investigators do their job without him predetermining the proper outcome. He also has potentially biased the jury pool. All in all this worsens race relations by feeding into the perception shared by whites as well as blacks that justice will not be impartial. I will say this much, I do not blame Obama for all of HOlder's missteps. Obama has done a lot of things to stay above the fray and try and be a leader for all Americans. Maybe he should have reigned Holder in some but Obama's got his hands full with other problelms. Oh did I mention HOlder is a bank crony who will probably get a job in a silkstocking law firm working for millions of bucks a year defending bankers whom he didn't have the integrity or courage to hold to account for their acts of fraud on the United States, other financial institutions, and the people. His tenure will be regarded by history as a failure of leadership at one of the most important jobs in our nation. Finally and most importantly besides him insulting the public and letting off the big financial cheats, he has been at the forefront of over-prosecuting the secrecy laws to punish whistleblowers and chill free speech. What has Holder done to vindicate the rights of privacy of the American public against the illegal snooping of the NSA? He could have charged NSA personnel with violations of law for their warrantless wiretapping which has been done millions of times and instead he did not persecute a single soul. That is a defalcation of historical proportions and it signals to the public that the government DOJ under him was not willing to do a damn thing to protect the public against the rapid growth of the illegal surveillance state. Who else could have done this? Nobody. And for that omission Obama deserves the blame too. Here were are sliding into a police state and Eric Holder made it go all the faster.

  5. JOE CLAYPOOL candidate for Superior Court in Harrison County - Indiana This candidate is misleading voters to think he is a Judge by putting Elect Judge Joe Claypool on his campaign literature. paragraphs 2 and 9 below clearly indicate this injustice to voting public to gain employment. What can we do? Indiana Code - Section 35-43-5-3: Deception (a) A person who: (1) being an officer, manager, or other person participating in the direction of a credit institution, knowingly or intentionally receives or permits the receipt of a deposit or other investment, knowing that the institution is insolvent; (2) knowingly or intentionally makes a false or misleading written statement with intent to obtain property, employment, or an educational opportunity; (3) misapplies entrusted property, property of a governmental entity, or property of a credit institution in a manner that the person knows is unlawful or that the person knows involves substantial risk of loss or detriment to either the owner of the property or to a person for whose benefit the property was entrusted; (4) knowingly or intentionally, in the regular course of business, either: (A) uses or possesses for use a false weight or measure or other device for falsely determining or recording the quality or quantity of any commodity; or (B) sells, offers, or displays for sale or delivers less than the represented quality or quantity of any commodity; (5) with intent to defraud another person furnishing electricity, gas, water, telecommunication, or any other utility service, avoids a lawful charge for that service by scheme or device or by tampering with facilities or equipment of the person furnishing the service; (6) with intent to defraud, misrepresents the identity of the person or another person or the identity or quality of property; (7) with intent to defraud an owner of a coin machine, deposits a slug in that machine; (8) with intent to enable the person or another person to deposit a slug in a coin machine, makes, possesses, or disposes of a slug; (9) disseminates to the public an advertisement that the person knows is false, misleading, or deceptive, with intent to promote the purchase or sale of property or the acceptance of employment;

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