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Opinions July 21, 2010

July 21, 2010
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Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Adoption of A.M.; M.M. v. M.M. & A.C.
53A05-1002-AD-71
Adoption. Reverses denial of grandfather M.M.’s uncontested petition to adopt his biological granddaughter A.M. Based upon the reasoning in K.S.P., the idea that the best interests of the child is the primary concern in an adoption proceeding, the purposes of the adoption statutes as stated by the legislature, and the trial court’s initial determination that adoption was in the best interests of A.M., preventing the adoption in this specific case on the basis of Ind. Code Section 31-19-15-1 and Ind. Code Section 31-19-15-2 would cause an absurd result not intended by the legislature. Remands for further proceedings. Judge Najam dissents.

Brandon Vest v. State of Indiana
49A02-0912-CR-1276
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement. The state prosecuted Vest for only one indivisible instance of resisting law enforcement, and jurors were not required to agree on which particular officer Vest fled.

T.J. v. State of Indiana
49A04-1001-JV-8
Juvenile. Affirms adjudication for animal fighting, a Class D felony if committed by an adult. The testimony from the witnesses support a reasonable inference T.J. and another boy were encouraging a larger dog to attack a smaller dog.

Anne Walterman Murphy, et al. v. William Curtis, et al.
49A04-0909-CV-503
Civil. Reverses summary judgment for Curtis and other members of the class. An administrative law judge’s refusal to consider evidence of conditions not disclosed on a Medicaid disability application doesn’t violate federal Medicaid law and the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment. Judge Riley dissents.

Indiana Dept. of Insurance v. Robin Everhart
84A01-0912-CV-614
Civil. Reverses findings of fact, conclusions of law, and judgment of $1 million in favor of Everhart in her claim against the Indiana Patient’s Compensation Fund. It is not consistent with Supreme Court precedent to hold the fund liable for more than the increased risk of harm that the doctor caused. Remands for the trial court to recalculate its damages award and award damages to Everhart in proportion to the increase in risk of harm that was caused by the malpractice and address whether the fund is entitled to a set-off.  

Centerfield Bar Inc. v. Michael Gee, et al.
05A02-0911-CV-1070
Civil. Affirms denial in part of Centerfield Bar’s motion for summary judgment in a complaint filed by the Gees that the bar’s negligence in failing to remove or control another patron resulted in Michael’s injuries. Based on the facts set forth as evidence, Greenfield hasn’t demonstrated that the assault on Michael was not foreseeable as a matter of law.

Eric Pilipow v. State of Indiana (NFP)
71A03-1001-CR-19
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class C felony battery.

Raymond E. Robinson v. State of Indiana (NFP)
18A04-0912-CR-692
Criminal. Affirms order revoking probation.

Joshua Orman v. State of Indiana (NFP)
11A04-1003-CR-216
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felonies burglary and aggravated battery.

Jonathan Perkins v. State of Indiana (NFP)
44A05-1001-CR-11
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony robbery, Class D felony aiding in a theft, and Class B misdemeanor visiting a common nuisance.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. The fee increase would be livable except for the 11% increase in spending at the Disciplinary Commission. The Commission should be focused on true public harm rather than going on witch hunts against lawyers who dare to criticize judges.

  2. Marijuana is safer than alcohol. AT the time the 1937 Marijuana Tax Act was enacted all major pharmaceutical companies in the US sold marijuana products. 11 Presidents of the US have smoked marijuana. Smoking it does not increase the likelihood that you will get lung cancer. There are numerous reports of canabis oil killing many kinds of incurable cancer. (See Rick Simpson's Oil on the internet or facebook).

  3. The US has 5% of the world's population and 25% of the world's prisoners. Far too many people are sentenced for far too many years in prison. Many of the federal prisoners are sentenced for marijuana violations. Marijuana is safer than alcohol.

  4. My daughter was married less than a week and her new hubbys picture was on tv for drugs and now I havent't seen my granddaughters since st patricks day. when my daughter left her marriage from her childrens Father she lived with me with my grand daughters and that was ok but I called her on the new hubby who is in jail and said didn't want this around my grandkids not unreasonable request and I get shut out for her mistake

  5. From the perspective of a practicing attorney, it sounds like this masters degree in law for non-attorneys will be useless to anyone who gets it. "However, Ted Waggoner, chair of the ISBA’s Legal Education Conclave, sees the potential for the degree program to actually help attorneys do their jobs better. He pointed to his practice at Peterson Waggoner & Perkins LLP in Rochester and how some clients ask their attorneys to do work, such as filling out insurance forms, that they could do themselves. Waggoner believes the individuals with the legal master’s degrees could do the routine, mundane business thus freeing the lawyers to do the substantive legal work." That is simply insulting to suggest that someone with a masters degree would work in a role that is subpar to even an administrative assistant. Even someone with just a certificate or associate's degree in paralegal studies would be overqualified to sit around helping clients fill out forms. Anyone who has a business background that they think would be enhanced by having a legal background will just go to law school, or get an MBA (which typically includes a business law class that gives a generic, broad overview of legal concepts). No business-savvy person would ever seriously consider this ridiculous master of law for non-lawyers degree. It reeks of desperation. The only people I see getting it are the ones who did not get into law school, who see the degree as something to add to their transcript in hopes of getting into a JD program down the road.

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