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Settlement reached on foster care rates

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Indiana Lawyer Rehearing

The Indiana Department of Child Services has agreed not to cut subsidies for foster and adoptive parents and other caregivers as part of a class-action settlement in federal court.

Though it hasn’t received final court approval in the Southern District of Indiana, the Nov. 19 agreement between the state agency and the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana would make permanent a preliminary order issued by U.S. Judge Sarah Evans Barker in January. That order barred DCS from imposing a 10 percent cut in the maximum $25 per day subsidy that parents and guardians receive for foster kids and some special needs adoptive children. DCS had proposed the reduction late last year after Gov. Mitch Daniels ordered state agencies to slash their budgets because of revenue shortfalls, but two federal lawsuits that were later combined alleged the cuts violated parts of Title IV-E of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. § 670, et seq.

The case is C.H., et al. v. James W. Payne, No. 1:10-CV-381. This proposed settlement stipulates that DCS isn’t admitting any violation and does not concede on the merits, but that both parties want to reach a settlement.

This proposed settlement allows DCS to come up with a new formula for calculating the daily rate for children in foster care by the end of 2010, but that does not preclude foster parents from challenging the new rates when they’re determined, according to a class notice attached to the proposed settlement. The proposal also provides that DCS will pay about $104,812 in attorneys’ fees and costs.

Once the class members receive notice, Judge Barker will likely consider the proposed settlement in January.•

Rehearing "Cuts trigger two lawsuits" IL Jan. 6-19, 2010

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  1. IF the Right to Vote is indeed a Right, then it is a RIGHT. That is the same for ALL eligible and properly registered voters. And this is, being able to cast one's vote - until the minute before the polls close in one's assigned precinct. NOT days before by absentee ballot, and NOT 9 miles from one's house (where it might be a burden to get to in time). I personally wait until the last minute to get in line. Because you never know what happens. THAT is my right, and that is Mr. Valenti's. If it is truly so horrible to let him on school grounds (exactly how many children are harmed by those required to register, on school grounds, on election day - seriously!), then move the polling place to a different location. For ALL voters in that precinct. Problem solved.

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  3. Let's be honest. A glut of lawyers out there, because law schools have overproduced them. Law schools dont care, and big law loves it. So the firms can afford to underpay them. Typical capitalist situation. Wages have grown slowly for entry level lawyers the past 25 years it seems. Just like the rest of our economy. Might as well become a welder. Oh and the big money is mostly reserved for those who can log huge hours and will cut corners to get things handled. More capitalist joy. So the answer coming from the experts is to "capitalize" more competition from nonlawyers, and robots. ie "expert systems." One even hears talk of "offshoring" some legal work. thus undercutting the workers even more. And they wonder why people have been pulling for Bernie and Trump. Hello fools, it's not just the "working class" it's the overly educated suffering too.

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