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Opinions July 14, 2010

July 14, 2010
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Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals

Eastern Alliance Insurance Group, Chubb Insurance Group, and Total Interior Systems America, LLC v. Elizabeth Howell

93A02-0912-EX-1287
Civil. Reverses penalties assessed against Eastern Alliance by the Full Worker’s Compensation Board due to a lack of diligence. The board’s factual findings demonstrate that Eastern Alliance reasonably investigated the claim and communicated with the parties, and afterwards it reasonably determined that it was not liable for the claim. Vacates penalties assessed against the company and remands that the board determine and enter an order regarding whether Chubb Insurance should be held responsible for the entirety of the penalty and attorneys’ fees awarded for its lack of diligence.

Paul Christy and Julia Christy v. Paul Sebo and Anita Sebo
55A05-1002-CC-131
Civil. Reverses the order denying the Christys’ request for attorney’s fees and costs against the Sebos in the Christys’ defense of an adverse possession claim and litigation of a breach of warranty claim. Summary judgment was granted in favor of the Christys and against the Sebos on whether the Sebos breached the warranty of title and the Sebos have not appealed that ruling. The fact that the Christys and the Clarks ultimately settled their adverse possession dispute is irrelevant to the question of whether Sebos breached the warranty of title. Remands for further proceedings.

Randy O'Brien, et al. v. C. Bruce Davidson, et al.
49A04-0910-CV-569
Civil. Reverses order granting summary judgment in favor of The Bar Plan Mutual Insurance Co. in Ashby and O’Brien’s legal malpractice action against The Bar Plan’s insured, C. Bruce Davidson Jr. Bar Plan has been able to investigate and defend the clients’ claims against the insured after receiving prompt, actual written notice of the claims from the clients.

Fidelity National Title Insurance Company v. Rhys Mussman and Sally Mussman
64A03-0905-CV-204
Civil. Reveres grant of summary judgment of $1.6 million in favor of the Mussmans on their complaint alleging conversion of funds held in an escrow account by Intercounty Title Company. ITC was Fidelity’s title insurance agent, not its agent for closing and escrow services, so the trial court erred when it held the Mussmans are entitled to judgment as a matter of law. Remands with instructions.

Jeannie Hall v. Larry Hall Trust and Jack Hall, Trustee (NFP)
64A05-0912-CV-715
Civil. Affirms determination that Jeannie Hall is not entitled to the income from all of the properties in the Larry A. Hall Trust.

Maurice J. Tatum v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-0912-CR-1213
Criminal. Affirms order revoking probation.

John Jacob Campbell v. State of Indiana (NFP)
18A02-0912-CR-1189
Criminal. Reverses order revoking probation and remands with instructions to the trial court to accommodate Campbell’s indigence consistent with the opinion.

Michael Furlong v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A04-0911-CR-658
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony burglary and Class D felony theft.

Marcus R. Berry v. State of Indiana (NFP)
02A03-1002-CR-109
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation.

Johnny Byers v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A04-0910-CR-612
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A felony attempted murder.

Shalini Kohli v. Vishal Mahajan (NFP)
29A02-1002-DR-131
Domestic relation. Affirms the decree dissolving marriage.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline
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  1. The sad thing is that no fish were thrown overboard The "greenhorn" who had never fished before those 5 days was interrogated for over 4 hours by 5 officers until his statement was illicited, "I don't want to go to prison....." The truth is that these fish were measured frozen off shore and thawed on shore. The FWC (state) officer did not know fish shrink, so the only reason that these fish could be bigger was a swap. There is no difference between a 19 1/2 fish or 19 3/4 fish, short fish is short fish, the ticket was written. In addition the FWC officer testified at trial, he does not measure fish in accordance with federal law. There was a document prepared by the FWC expert that said yes, fish shrink and if these had been measured correctly they averaged over 20 inches (offshore frozen). This was a smoke and mirror prosecution.

  2. I love this, Dave! Many congrats to you! We've come a long way from studying for the bar together! :)

  3. This outbreak illustrates the absurdity of the extreme positions taken by today's liberalism, specifically individualism and the modern cult of endless personal "freedom." Ebola reminds us that at some point the person's own "freedom" to do this and that comes into contact with the needs of the common good and "freedom" must be curtailed. This is not rocket science, except, today there is nonstop propaganda elevating individual preferences over the common good, so some pundits have a hard time fathoming the obvious necessity of quarantine in some situations....or even NATIONAL BORDERS...propagandists have also amazingly used this as another chance to accuse Western nations of "racism" which is preposterous and offensive. So one the one hand the idolatry of individualism has to stop and on the other hand facts people don't like that intersect with race-- remain facts nonetheless. People who respond to facts over propaganda do better in the long run. We call it Truth. Sometimes it seems hard to find.

  4. It would be hard not to feel the Kramers' anguish. But Catholic Charities, by definition, performed due diligence and held to the statutory standard of care. No good can come from punishing them for doing their duty. Should Indiana wish to change its laws regarding adoption agreements and or putative fathers, the place for that is the legislature and can only apply to future cases. We do not apply new laws to past actions, as the Kramers seem intent on doing, to no helpful end.

  5. I am saddened to hear about the loss of Zeff Weiss. He was an outstanding member of the Indianapolis legal community. My thoughts are with his family.

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