In This Issue of Indiana Lawyer

MARCH 3-16, 2021

Indiana Capitol Police say they feel a special sense of pride and honor carrying out their duties safeguarding the Indiana Statehouse and other Circle City landmarks. A recent ABA resolution is urges new programs to assist law school graduates and law students experiencing financial hardship due to student loan debt. Family law practitioners and longtime colleagues James Reed and Michael Kohlhaas made a career move that runs counter to the current trend — they went from big to boutique, and they aren’t the only big law firm lawyers who have made such a change.

Top StoriesBack to Top

ABA urges key reforms on student loan debt

In an effort to address the crushing weight posed by student loan debt, the American Bar Association House of Delegates adopted a resolution penned by a group of young lawyers during its midyear meeting last week. The resolution urges programs to assist law school graduates and law students experiencing financial hardship due to their student loan debt.

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Bill aims to prevent ‘social justice prosecuting’

Under a bill in the Statehouse, a prosecutor who establishes a policy of not charging certain offenses would be considered “noncompliant.” But local prosecutors fear changes that would step on their prosecutorial discretion and give the attorney general, a statewide officeholder, a say over her local decisions.

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FocusBack to Top

Kelln and Harrell: Hoosier McCabe’s EPA nomination elevates climate change policies

A little more than four years ago, Hoosier Janet McCabe ended her service as assistant administrator of EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation. Since then, the most significant aspects of the Obama-era climate change regulations, namely the Clean Power Plan, have been unwound. Biden’s selection of McCabe signals a doubling down on regulating greenhouse gas emissions.

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Sugarman and Thomas: Can plaintiffs ‘squeeze’ restoration damages out of ELA?

On April 20, 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its decision in Atlantic Richfield Co. v. Christian, No. 17-1498, 140 S.Ct. 1335. The Court’s holding was relatively simple: plaintiffs (Montana landowners) could bring state court claims pursuing cleanup of additional contamination from the “Anaconda Smelter,” but they were first required under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) to seek the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) approval for additional cleanup. While on its face this decision addresses the interplay between CERCLA and Montana state law claims, the ramifications of Atlantic Richfield may be felt in Indiana.

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Doehrmann, List and Hagerty: Coal combustion residual regulation outlook under Biden

It has been just over one month since President Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States, and he is delivering on his promise to move quickly. Biden has signed more executive orders in his first 30 days than any president in U.S. history. Perhaps another record-breaking instance is the proportion of these actions that relate to energy and environmental policies.

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OpinionBack to Top

McDermott: Lake, St. Joseph judiciary bill raises questions

The undeniable truth is that there is a long legislative history in this nation of powerful majorities diminishing and silencing the voices of minorities. While I have no reason to believe the motive of the current judicial selection legislation for Lake and St. Joseph counties is racial, this law will undoubtedly have a disproportionally negative effect on citizens who happen to be racial minorities.

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Stafford: A veteran of Indiana GOP politics looks on, shakes his head

I asked former three-term Indiana Attorney General Linley Pearson, if you were a younger person today, would you run for office? He didn’t hesitate. “There’s no question today I could not be in politics,” he said. “It’s just totally changed, and it’s not very attractive to me. … If you want to exaggerate or malign a person, you could always do that, but do you want to do that?”

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JLAP: An interview with Justice David — because he cares

Talking about what motivates him to be a JLAP volunteer, Justice Steven David pointed out parallels in his legal and military career paths. In both, ordinary people are called upon to do extraordinary things: solving problems, working in the midst of conflict and making decisions that affect lives. We set high expectations for ourselves. Failure is not an option.

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Bar AssociationsBack to Top

IndyBar: Body Language Expert and Celebrity Lie Detector to Open Bench Bar 2021

“What if you could get exactly what you want in life by reading and understanding the body language of murderers?” asks Janine Driver, New York Times best-selling author and award-winning keynote speaker. With more than 16 years of experience as a federal law enforcement officer within the Department of Justice, Driver will be presenting the opening plenary session for the 2021 Bench Bar Conference in Louisville from June 17-19.

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IndyBar: Does Anyone Else Miss the Red Drink Tickets? How to Network During a Pandemic and Beyond

As a small-firm practitioner who makes her money by providing personal legal services, networking is vital for the continued source of clients I need to support my business and keep my associates busy. Planning committees, nonprofit boards, volunteering, social gatherings and local events were my go-to formula for expanding my circles and getting my name and face in front of people who needed to hire a lawyer for highly personal and sometimes sensitive reasons. They needed to have met me in person. They needed my name to come from someone they knew and trusted. At least, that is what I believed to be the only way, until that way no longer existed. And I am not just saying its disappearance is because of the pandemic.

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DTCI: Contact Tracing in the Removal Context

When faced with a case involving unincorporated business entities, a defendant must carefully consider whether the requirements for diversity jurisdiction are satisfied before filing its notice of removal. Failure to do so could result an adverse award of attorney fees on a motion for remand, or the district court sua sponte remanding the case to state court upon discovery that it lacks subject matter jurisdiction over the action.

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