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Opinions March 15, 2011

March 15, 2011
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Indiana Supreme Court
Debra L. Walker v. David M. Pullen
64S05-1101-CT-6
Civil tort. Reverses grant of Pullen’s motion to have a new trial and remands for the trial court to reinstate the original jury verdict of $10,070. The trial court judge only made general findings and not special findings as required by Indiana Trial Rule 59(J). Justice Dickson concurs in result.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Grange Mutual Casualty, et al. v. West Bend Mutual Ins., et al.
29A02-1008-PL-965
Civil plenary. Affirms in part and reverses in part summary judgment granted to West Bend Mutual. Finds that both policies were triggered – West Bend’s was triggered by the original fracturing of the storm drain pipe which resulted in immediate damage to the pipe and the subsequent flooding. Grange’s was triggered by the flood damage that occurred during its policy period. Remands for the trial court to apportion damages accordingly. Judge May dissents.

Jason W. Hall v. State of Indiana
25A05-1008-CR-534
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to two counts of Class B felony burglary. Hall didn’t establish an abuse of the trial court’s sentencing discretion or that his sentence is inappropriate. He also wasn’t denied credit time to which he was entitled.

Lovetha Smitherman v. Kroger Limited Partnership I, et al. (NFP)
49A02-1008-PL-880
Civil plenary. Affirms grant of partial summary judgment to Kroger upon Smitherman’s claim for negligent hiring and retention.

Susan Ricketts v. Subaru of Indiana Automotive (NFP)
93A02-1008-EX-1030
Civil. Affirms order of the Worker’s Compensation Board on Ricketts’ claim for disability and medical benefits arising from a work related accident.

L.M. v. B.S., et al. (NFP)
71A03-1010-MI-514
Miscellaneous. Affirms order denying grandmother L.M.’s verified petition for grandparent visitation.

Term. of the Parent-Child Rel. of S.H.; R.H. v. I.D.C.S. (NFP)
36A01-1008-JT-418
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  1. Your article is a good intro the recent amendments to Fed.R.Civ.P. For a much longer - though not necessarily better -- summary, counsel might want to read THE CHIEF UMPIRE IS CHANGING THE STRIKE ZONE, which I co-authored and which was just published in the January issue of THE VERDICT (the monthly publication of the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association).

  2. Thank you, John Smith, for pointing out a needed correction. The article has been revised.

  3. The "National institute for Justice" is an agency for the Dept of Justice. That is not the law firm you are talking about in this article. The "institute for justice" is a public interest law firm. http://ij.org/ thanks for interesting article however

  4. I would like to try to find a lawyer as soon possible I've had my money stolen off of my bank card driver pressed charges and I try to get the information they need it and a Social Security board is just give me a hold up a run around for no reason and now it think it might be too late cuz its been over a year I believe and I can't get the right information they need because they keep giving me the runaroundwhat should I do about that

  5. It is wonderful that Indiana DOC is making some truly admirable and positive changes. People with serious mental illness, intellectual disability or developmental disability will benefit from these changes. It will be much better if people can get some help and resources that promote their health and growth than if they suffer alone. If people experience positive growth or healing of their health issues, they may be less likely to do the things that caused them to come to prison in the first place. This will be of benefit for everyone. I am also so happy that Indiana DOC added correctional personnel and mental health staffing. These are tough issues to work with. There should be adequate staffing in prisons so correctional officers and other staff are able to do the kind of work they really want to do-helping people grow and change-rather than just trying to manage chaos. Correctional officers and other staff deserve this. It would be great to see increased mental health services and services for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities in the community so that fewer people will have to receive help and support in prisons. Community services would like be less expensive, inherently less demeaning and just a whole lot better for everyone.

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