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Reports break down caseloads, costs in Indiana courts

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It cost nearly $400 million to operate Indiana courts last year, according to new reports released by the Indiana Supreme Court Division on State Court Administration.

The 2009 Indiana Judicial Service Report  and Indiana Probation Report   provide information on costs, caseloads, and other court information.

The data is based on the 2009 calendar year and found that nearly two million new cases were filed in courts last year. This is the second highest number ever and is a 16.5 percent increase in filings as compared to 2000.

The reports also show:

   - 12,625 Child in Need of Services cases were filed across the state in 2009
    
   - More than 385,000 cases included pro se litigants
    
   - Mortgage foreclosure filings increased nearly 20 percent from 2005 to 2009
    
    - It cost taxpayers $26.33 each to operate the courts after revenues were deducted from expenditures
    
   -  It cost $64.31 to incarcerate someone per day in the Department of Correction; adult felony probation supervision costs $1.80 per day per person.

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  1. Why in the world would someone need a person to correct a transcript when a realtime court reporter could provide them with a transcript (rough draft) immediately?

  2. If the end result is to simply record the spoke word, then perhaps some day digital recording may eventually be the status quo. However, it is a shallow view to believe the professional court reporter's function is to simply report the spoken word and nothing else. There are many aspects to being a professional court reporter, and many aspects involved in producing a professional and accurate transcript. A properly trained professional steno court reporter has achieved a skill set in a field where the average dropout rate in court reporting schools across the nation is 80% due to the difficulty of mastering the necessary skills. To name just a few "extras" that a court reporter with proper training brings into a courtroom or a deposition suite; an understanding of legal procedure, technology specific to the legal profession, and an understanding of what is being said by the attorneys and litigants (which makes a huge difference in the quality of the transcript). As to contracting, or anti-contracting the argument is simple. The court reporter as governed by our ethical standards is to be the independent, unbiased individual in a deposition or courtroom setting. When one has entered into a contract with any party, insurance carrier, etc., then that reporter is no longer unbiased. I have been a court reporter for over 30 years and I echo Mr. Richardson's remarks that I too am here to serve.

  3. A competitive bid process is ethical and appropriate especially when dealing with government agencies and large corporations, but an ethical line is crossed when court reporters in Pittsburgh start charging exorbitant fees on opposing counsel. This fee shifting isn't just financially biased, it undermines the entire justice system, giving advantages to those that can afford litigation the most. It makes no sense.

  4. "a ttention to detail is an asset for all lawyers." Well played, Indiana Lawyer. Well played.

  5. I have a appeals hearing for the renewal of my LPN licenses and I need an attorney, the ones I have spoke to so far want the money up front and I cant afford that. I was wondering if you could help me find one that takes payments or even a pro bono one. I live in Indiana just north of Indianapolis.

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