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Opinions March 28, 2011

March 28, 2011
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7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Scott C. Cole and Jennifer A. Cole v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue
10-2194
U.S. Tax Court, Judge Diane L. Kroupa.
Tax. Affirms finding that the Coles omitted more than $1.2 million of income and more than $1.3 million of self-employment income from their 2001 joint tax return and that they fraudulently avoided tax liability. The Coles did not show clear error in the Tax Court’s finding that because they did not produce credible documentary or other evidence showing otherwise, that the commissioner’s reconstruction of their income was “reasonable and substantially accurate.” The Coles failed to show that the Tax Court clearly erred in finding that Scott may not avoid tax liability on his income by assigning it to another corporation when substantively his Bentley Group ownership never changed as evidenced by his continued dominion and control over the partnership’s funds.

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Sean T. Ryan v. Dee Anna Ryan
71A03-1009-DR-453
Domestic relation. Reverses denial of Sean Ryan’s motion for relief under Indiana Trial Rule 60(B)(8) regarding the prices set for the sale of real estate as listed in the settlement agreement. The trial court abused its discretion in denying his motion for relief from judgment without hearing pertinent evidence. Remands with instructions.

Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Indianapolis, Inc. v. Metro School District of Lawrence Twp., et al.
49A02-1004-PL-427
Civil plenary. Affirms denial of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Indianapolis and Joseph Piper and other parents’ requests for declaratory and injunctive relief and the judgments in favor of Metropolitan School District of Lawrence Township and Concetta Raimondi, as superintendent of the school district, in a suit challenging the termination of a shuttle bus service paid for by the township to the private schools in the township. Indiana Code Section 20-7-11-1 doesn’t mandate that the school district must provide special school bus routes and free shuttle bus services not already in effect for the sole benefit of nonpublic school students.

Arnaldo Trabucco v. Pamela Trabucco
03A05-1003-DR-195
Domestic relation. Affirms the trial court’s use of income averaging to compute Arnaldo Trabucco’s child support obligation. The trial court did not err in using an income averaging approach to calculate his weekly gross income for child support and in including funds set aside for their son’s college and other accounts within the marital estate. Remands with instructions to consider whether the Home Federal IRA and IRA #1491 were consolidated into another IRA and therefore should not have been counted separately. Remands to also provide a detailed explanation of how the trial court arrived at the specific value assigned to a coin collection.

Capitol Construction Services v. Farah, LLC
49A04-1006-PL-354
Civil plenary. Affirms order denying Capitol Construction Services’ motion to dismiss demand for arbitration in favor of Farah LLC. Farah has not waived its right to arbitrate and equity favors the result reached by the lower court.

Steven A. Wright v. State of Indiana (NFP)
20A03-1004-CR-233
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class A felony and Class C felony child molesting.  

G.F. v. R.F. (NFP)
26A01-1008-DR-395
Domestic relation. Affirms denial of father’s petition for modification of child custody.

Cynthia Taylor v. Community Hospitals of Indiana, Inc. (NFP)
49A04-1008-PL-499
Civil plenary. Affirms summary judgment in favor of Community Hospitals of Indiana after Taylor fell and was injured in the hospital.

Ashley Straub v. State of Indiana (NFP)
92A05-1007-CR-458
Criminal. Affirms convictions of two counts of dealing in a schedule I controlled substance as Class B felonies, and one count of Class D felony possession of a schedule I controlled substance.

Alois Cronauer v. Starke Co. Jail, et al. (NFP)
75A03-1009-PL-496
Civil plenary. Affirms denial of motion for relief under Indiana Trial Rule 60(B).

Kristin M. Escamilla v. State of Indiana (NFP)
45A04-1009-CR-570
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to Class B felony dealing in narcotics.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

The Indiana Supreme Court dismissed one appeal for the week ending March 25.
 

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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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