ILNews

Supreme Court grants 5 transfers

Jennifer Nelson
January 1, 2008
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The Indiana Supreme Court granted five transfers within the past week to cases dealing with traffic stops, life insurance polices, unpaid medical expenses, modification of a custody order, and plea agreements.

The high court granted transfer and released its opinion yesterday in Sergio Campos v. State of Indiana, No. 45S03-0804-CR-199, involving a traffic stop and Sergio Campos' arrest after police found drugs in the car. A story in today's Indiana Lawyer Daily covers the Campos case in more detail.

The Supreme Court granted transfer April 30 to Estate of Jerome Mintz v. Connecticut General Life Insurance Co. and Wayne E. Gruber, No. 49A05-0609-CV-532. At issue is whether the trial court erred in granting summary judgment in favor of Wayne E. Gruber on the estate's negligence claim and whether the court erred in granting summary judgment in favor of Connecticut General as to the estate's vicarious liability, negligence, and bad faith claims. Jerome Mintz was retiring and needed to convert his group life insurance policy into an individual policy. Mintz, who died before the suit concluded, didn't properly convert his policies because he believed Gruber had taken care of the conversion. When Connecticut General wouldn't allow the entire value of the group policy converted into his individual policy, the Mintzes brought a suit against Gruber and Connecticut General. The appellate court affirmed the decision of the trial court.

Transfer was also granted Wednesday in James Butler, as personal representative of Nondis Jane Butler, deceased v. Indiana Department of Insurance, et al., No. 49A05-0612-CV-742; In the Matter of the Paternity of K.I., by grandmother and next friend, Juanita Ivers v. Jeremy Hensley, No. 13A05-0706-JV-329; and Bruce Wayne St. Clair Jr. v. State of Indiana, No. 76A03-0708-CR-361.

At issue in Butler is whether the trial court erred in admitting evidence regarding payments and benefits from Medicare and Medicaid in violation of the collateral source rule and whether the court erred by denying the estate's request to recover Nondis Jane Butler's unpaid medical expenses pursuant to the Indiana Adult Wrongful Death Statute. The appellate court affirmed the judgment of the trial court.

In Ivers, the appellate court reversed the trial court's ruling that awarded custody of K.I. to Jeremy Hensley from Juanita Ivers and granted Ivers visitation. The appellate court remanded for a determination of whether the parental presumption had been overcome and if so, whether a modification is in the best interest of K.I. and whether there had been a change in one or more of the relevant statutory factors.

At issue in St. Clair is whether Bruce W. St. Clair waived his right to a direct appeal by entering a plea agreement with a fixed plea. The trial court denied St. Clair's petition, but the appellate court reversed it, finding he had an open plea and met the requirements of Post-Conviction Rule 2. The Indiana Court of Appeals remanded the issue so that St. Clair would have the opportunity to argue for a lesser sentence in accordance with his open plea agreement.
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