Opinions Oct. 8, 2010

October 8, 2010
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 Indiana Supreme Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.

Indiana Court of Appeals
Richmond State Hospital, et al. v. Paula Brattain, et al.
Civil. Reverses finding that the merit employees, represented by Veregge and Strong, are entitled to 20 years of back pay and remands with instructions to recalculate the merit employees’ back pay based on the time period beginning 10 days before the July 29, 1993, complaint was filed and ending when the state abolished the split class system. Instructs the trial court to determine whether the state abolished the split class system on Sept. 12 or Sept. 19, 1993. Affirms in all other respects.

Earl Budd v. State of Indiana
Post conviction. Affirms denial of successive petition for post-conviction relief. The post-conviction court didn’t err by finding Indiana Code Section 35-50-6-3.3(h)(2)(B) doesn’t constitute a bill of attainder, an ex post facto law or a denial of equal protection.

R.R. F. v. L.L.F.
Domestic relation. Affirms order father pay retroactive child support to a date preceding the filing date of mother’s petition to modify. The provision in the parties’ agreed entry whereby father ceased child support payments upon E.F.’s 18th birthday was contrary to law and void. The dissolution court should have credited father for certain payments against the court’s order that he pay $2,961.75 for the period May 11 to Aug. 22, 2009. Remands to the dissolution court and instructs to first consider the reduction in the parents’ obligation toward E.F.’s college expenses realized by mother’s tax credit and then apportion the parents’ obligations accordingly.

Victor J. Bandini v. Joann M. Bandini
Domestic relation. The trial court correctly interpreted the parties’ settlement agreement as contemplating an equal division of Victor’s gross retirement pay. The trial court erred in ordering him to pay his ex-wife an amount equal to half of his gross retirement pay prior to any deductions for his Veterans Administration disability benefits waiver and Survivor Benefit Plan costs. Indiana trial courts lack authority to enforce even an agreed-upon division of property insofar as it divides amounts of gross military retirement pay that were, previous to the decree, waived to receive disability benefits or elected to be deducted from gross pay as SBP costs to benefit the former spouse. Holds that a military spouse may not, by a post-decree waiver of retirement pay in favor of disability benefits or Combat-Related Special Compensation, unilaterally and voluntarily reduce the benefits awarded the former spouse in a dissolution decree. Remands for further proceedings.

Ronald J. McGary v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentence following guilty plea to operating a motor vehicle as a habitual traffic offender as a Class D felony.

Jason D. Miller v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Reverses determination of Miller’s credit time classification and remands for proceedings consistent with this opinion. Affirms convictions of and sentences for Class A felony child molesting and Class C felony child molesting.

Steven A. Reynolds v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Affirms sentences for two counts of Class A misdemeanor battery.

Fraternal Order of Police, Evansville Lodge No. 73 v. City of Evansville, IN. (NFP)
Civil plenary. Affirms conclusion the city didn’t breach the collective bargaining agreement by reducing the number of patrol sergeants allowed to work on holidays.

Jeremy M. Frantzreb v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Criminal. Reverses convictions of Class C felony forgery and Class A misdemeanor possession of marijuana and remands for a new trial.

Indiana Parole Board v. Martin De La Torre (NFP)
Criminal. Reverses denial of the Indiana Parole Board’s motion to correct error.

S.T. v. State of Indiana (NFP)
Juvenile. Affirms adjudication for committing what would be Class C felony robbery if committed by an adult.

Indiana Tax Court had posted no opinions at IL deadline.


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  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues