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Opinions Aug. 17, 2011

August 17, 2011
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Lisa Hicks v. Avery Drei, LLC and Chance Felling
10-2744
U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana, Indianapolis Division, Judge Jane Magnus-Stinson.
Civil. Affirms grant of Avery Drei and Felling’s motion for judgment as a matter of law on Hicks’ vacation pay claim and a portion of their similar motion on her overtime pay claim. Evidence shows that Hicks and Felling had an agreement that Hicks would not earn vacation pay until after being employed for one year; her employment ended before she reached her one-year anniversary. The District Court did not abuse its discretion in denying Hicks’ motion in limine. Affirms in all other respects.

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Amy Gulbranson v. State of Indiana
71A05-1103-CR-120
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony assisting a criminal. Gulbranson’s reliance on authority interpreting prior versions of Ind. Code 35-44-3-2 is misplaced.

C.S. v. State of Indiana
67A01-1101-JS-19
Juvenile. Reverses adjudication as a delinquent child for violating the compulsory school attendance law, a status offense. There was insufficient evidence that C.S. is in need of care, treatment, or rehabilitation, which is a required element in order to be adjudicated.

Randall Thomas Ford v. Debra Ann Ford
07A01-1012-DR-601
Domestic relation. Affirms the trial court’s conclusion that Randall Ford’s employer-funded health benefit account constitutes a marital asset subject to division, but reverses the judgment regarding valuation of the account. Although there are possibilities that might impact the valuation of the account, they do not alter the fact that that Randall does have an immediately existing right to present enjoyment of the account. Remands with instructions to conduct a hearing at which the value of the account as a divisible marital asset may be determined.

Outboard Boating Club of Evansville, Inc., et al. v. Indiana State Dept. of Health
82A01-1102-PL-52
Civil plenary. Affirms grant of the health department’s motion to dismiss the boating clubs’ action for declaratory judgment that the health department had no jurisdiction to regulate the clubs’ facilities. The trial court lacked subject matter jurisdiction due to the clubs’ failure to exhaust administrative remedies.

Joshua Farmer v. State of Indiana (NFP)
89A01-1012-CR-656
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class D felony possession of a narcotic drug.

Tat-Yik Jarvis Ka and Amanda Beth Ka v. City of Indianapolis (NFP)

49A02-1103-CT-188
Civil tort. Affirms summary judgment for the City of Indianapolis on the Kas’ suit for negligence, negligent infliction of emotional distress, trespass and nuisance after sewage from a city pipe backed up into their home.

Thomas Hopkins v. State of Indiana (NFP)

48A04-1101-CR-13
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

David G. Carmichael v. Candace (Carmichael) Ballard (NFP)
52A05-1012-DR-770
Domestic relation. Affirms denial of Carmichael’s motion for relief from judgment.

Kevin R. Franklin v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A03-1012-CR-651
Criminal. Affirms convictions of murder, Class C felony carrying a handgun without a license, and Class D felony criminal recklessness.

N.D. v. T.D. (NFP)
71A03-1011-DR-648
Domestic relation. Affirms trial court’s ruling regarding custody, provisional child support, tax exemption, attorney fees, and bias. Remands for further consideration regarding the father’s pension.

Base Alston-Butler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1101-CR-55
Criminal. Affirms convictions of four counts of Class B felony robbery.

Beverly Jinkins v. Jet Credit Union (NFP)
49A02-1006-PL-666
Civil plenary. Affirms partial summary judgment for Jet Credit Union on Jinkins’ counterclaims alleging breach of contract and various tort claims. Affirms grant of Jet’s motion to strike Jinkins’ untimely response.

Term. of Parent-Child Rel. of: S.C., et al.; D.C. v. I.D.C.S. (NFP)
79A02-1102-JT-203
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights.

Frontier Insurance Co. and Midwest Bonding, Inc. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A04-1102-CR-89
Criminal. Reverses denial of motion to correct error challenging an order for forfeiture of a bond and the imposition of late surrender fees.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

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  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

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