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Opinions Oct. 14, 2010

October 14, 2010
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The following opinion was posted after IL deadline Wednesday.
Indiana Supreme Court
TRW Vehicle Safety Systems, Inc., and Ford Motor Company v. Sally J. Moore, personal representative of the estate of Daniel A. Moore, deceased  
73S05-0909-CV-404
Civil. Reverses allocation of fault to Daniel Moore, Ford Motor Co., nonparty Goodyear Tire, and TRW Vehicle Safety Systems in a wrongful death suit. Reverses judgment of $1.25 million entered against TRW, reverses determination of total damages and remands for retrial to allocate 100 percent of the fault between Moore and Ford and re-determine the total damages subject to fault allocations unless the estate accepts remittitur as specified.

Today’s opinions

Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Town of Culver Board of Zoning Appeals v. Roderick J. Ratcliff and Pamela A. Ratcliff
50A03-1004-MI-179
Miscellaneous. Affirms judgment in favor of the Ratcliffs on their petition for writ of certiorari from an adverse decision of the Board of Zoning Appeals. The storage sheds on a landscaped gravel lot supplied with electricity aren’t considered “structures” within the definition of Culver’s zoning ordinances.

Claudette Gee v. Green Tree Servicing, LLC
27A02-1003-MF-304
Mortgage foreclosure. Affirms denial of Gee’s motion to set aside the sheriff’s sale of her property. The sheriff complied with Indiana Code Section 32-29-7-3(e)’s requirement that notices of the sale be posted “at the door of the courthouse” when the notice was posted at the temporary court offices instead of the permanent courthouse, which was under renovation.

D.C. v. State of Indiana
49A02-1002-JV-100
Juvenile. Affirms the juvenile court didn’t abuse its discretion in ordering a commitment to the Department of Correction. Reverses order of both a determinate and indeterminate commitment. Because I.C. Section 31-37-19-10 is applicable to D.C., he is subject to a determinate commitment of up to 2 years in an authorized facility. Remands to issue a new dispositional order.

In the Matter of the Adoption of K.F. and T.F.; B.F. v. L.F.
47A04-1006-AD-373
Adoption. Affirms grant of stepmother L.F.’s petition for adoption of B.F.’s minor children. The evidence is sufficient to show mother had the ability to pay child support but did not, and that she is unfit to be a parent.

M.R., M.R., F.R., and K.R., Alleged to be CHINS; F.T. v. IDCS and Child Advocates
49A05-1002-JC-140
Juvenile. Vacates parental participation decree with regard to the alleged father of one of the children and remands for further proceedings. F.T.’s paternity of F.R. has never been established and certain procedural prerequisites for a parental participation decree weren’t followed.

Term. of Parent-Child Rel of J.P., et al; A.P. and A.P. v. I.D.C.S. and Child Advocates (NFP)
49A02-1003-JT-385
Juvenile. Affirms termination of parental rights.

Lisa A. Fowler v. State of Indiana (NFP)
34A04-1003-CR-171
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to possession of cocaine within 1,000 feet of a youth program center as a Class B felony.

Jarrod S. Snyder v. State of Indiana (NFP)
57A05-1003-CR-155
Criminal. Affirms revocation of probation and order Snyder serve the entire suspended portion of his sentence.

Mark Thomas v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1002-CR-193
Criminal. Affirms sentence for Class C felony burglary, Class D felony attempted theft, Class B misdemeanor criminal mischief, and determination Thomas is a habitual offender.

Timothy Williams v. State of Indiana (NFP)

49A02-1003-CR-308
Criminal. Affirms convictions of Class B felony attempted robbery, Class C felony battery, and Class A misdemeanor carrying a handgun without a license.

Phyllis A. Merriweather v. State of Indiana (NFP)
49A02-1003-CR-428
Criminal. Affirms conviction of Class A misdemeanor criminal trespass.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.
 

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  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

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