ILNews

Opinions March 29, 2011

March 29, 2011
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Indiana Supreme Court
Edward Dawson v. State of Indiana
49S02-1103-CR-176
Criminal. Rules that the Indiana Court of Appeals was correct in declining Edward Dawson’s belated appeal of the trial court’s decision to revoke Dawson’s probation and impose a six-year sentence. States that the COA correctly decided that belated appeals from orders revoking probation are not presently available pursuant to Post-Conviction Rule 2, as the sanction imposed when probation is revoked does not qualify as a “sentence” under the rule, and therefore Dawson is not an “eligible defendant.” Grants transfer and adopts and incorporates by reference the opinion of the Court of Appeals under Appellate Rule 58(A)(1).

Indiana Court of Appeals
Mike Hawa v. Gerald R. Moore
87A01-1007-SC-344
Small claim. Affirms small claims court ruling in favor of a countersuit against property owner Mike Hawa, stating Hawa failed to provide contractor Gerald Moore with adequate assurance that Hawa would pay him for his services. States that small claims court erred by awarding Moore the cost of transporting materials after the lawsuit was filed, saying Moore should have used reasonable diligence to mitigate. Reverses with instructions to reduce Moore’s damage award amount.

Connie Brumley, et al. v. Commonwealth Business College Education Corp. d/b/a Brown Mackie College
45A04-1002-CT-66
Civil tort. Affirms trial court’s order compelling arbitration, ruling that the plaintiffs’ actions challenge Brown Mackie’s entire enrollment agreement, not just its arbitration clause. Judge Barnes concurs in a separate opinion.

Ricky D. Whitaker v. Travis M. Becker, et al.
02A03-1006-CT-303
Civil tort. Reverses trial court’s decision to deny Ricky Whitaker’s motion to correct error, stating the court’s decision was an abuse of discretion. Reverses trial court’s decision dismissing the case and awarding $3,700 to Becker’s counsel as reasonable attorney fees for unacceptable conduct. Orders sanction of Whitaker’s counsel with orders to pay $625 in reasonable attorney fees to Becker’s counsel, and remands for further consideration.

Francisco Ponce v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A05-1008-CR-492
Criminal. Affirms trial court’s sentencing of Francisco Ponce on convictions of two counts of Class B felony aggravated battery, Class C felony battery, Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement, and Class C felony carrying a handgun without a license.

Eddie J. Williams, Jr. v. State Employees' Appeals Commission (NFP)
49A02-1011-MI-1269
Miscellaneous. Affirms trial court’s dismissal of appellant’s petition for judicial review of a decision by the State Employees’ Appeals Commission.

The Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

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  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

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